The Kingdom of God is Literally in our Hands

November 19, 2019

Over the past month, I have been awed and humbled by the generosity of our local community.  Each year as we prepare for the Locavore Love Your Neighbor Fundraiser, we collect donations toward our silent and live auctions.  It’s beautiful to see how many generous donations are handed to us.  These come from individuals, churches, and local businesses.

I happen to know that our local businesses are asked multiple times a week for donations year-round.  And as we come to them in the fall, asking to consider one more gift, I am astounded at how kind and willingly generous they are to Bridge of Hope.

Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to walk around downtown and collect pledged items.  By the time I got to Ten Thousand Villages and the manager handed me a necklace made from bombshells transformed into images of peace, tears came to my eyes.  As I later reflected on why I was so moved at that moment, what came to me was the phrase, “The Kingdom of God is at hand.”

While this phrase means that the Kingdom of God is near, at that moment I was also seeing it being passed between our hands.  A business giving a gift to an organization, to auction to other generous hands willing to give money, to support families facing homelessness in taking their futures into their hands.  This was a snapshot of kingdom reality that we are living!

I told this story at the Locavore fundraiser, and I spoke from my heart when I said, “The kingdom of God is not only near us, it’s literally in our hands.  It’s in our hands all the time if we choose to say ‘yes.’  And so it is here tonight.  We have the power to say yes to safe and sustainable housing for women and children.  Yes to good opportunities and bright futures.  This is what Jesus prayed for when he said, ‘as in heaven, so on earth.’”

Our matching donor, John Black, shared his reflection on the miracle of the loaves and fish.  He invited us to consider that all Jesus asked for was what they had.  It started with some loaves and fish.  But as they began to pass it around, others in the crowd considered what they had to give as well, and they added their offerings.  The real miracle was multiplied generosity.

Like the crowd Jesus fed, our Locavore crowd responded with incredible generosity, resulting in our most successful fundraiser to date.

The Kingdom of God is in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County.  If you wish to see it, look in your hands.

The Kingdom of God is Literally in our Hands