Moment for Mission
"For the message about the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God." — 1 Corinthians 1:18-25, NRSV
The needs of the world are overwhelming. Children are orphans due to health epidemics. There are mountains to move in the wake of earthquakes and tornadoes. Families are living without access to clean drinking water throughout the world.
It might seem foolish for someone to think that he or she can make a difference. It might even seem foolish to think that our churches can make an impact on the world.
Paul wrote to the Corinthians, "The message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing." However, for those who have chosen this journey of walking in faith, this message of healing and hope the world so desperately needs can be done "with the power of God."
In fact, there is much that has already been done.
Through the United Methodist Committee on Relief, we are doing humanitarian relief work at home and around the world. We are doing the work of sustainable development, helping people find ways to utilize resources in ways that strengthen the whole community. We are working to improve global health by helping communities gain access to clean water and fight against disease.
Through our gifts on UMCOR Sunday next week, we have the opportunity to keep taking the message of the cross — messages of healing, hope and restoration — to people in the wake of disasters and to those living on the edge of poverty.
God, we come to you this morning grateful for homes, families and all the things we rely on. We recognize that not everyone has access to food, clean water and a safe place to live. Open our hearts that we might give out of the abundance we live in to those who have been left with nothing. Amen.
From Discipleship Ministries: Third Sunday in Lent – Gracious God, we praise you! You revealed your love for the world in Jesus' self-offering on the cross. It is a mystery: the sinless One died to save guilty humankind. We are grateful that you speak by your Word and Spirit, through pastors and teachers, to help us receive this gift. May we live with a deeper understanding of true foolishness and wisdom. We present our offerings to you, so that those who are weak in the world will be made strong through our church's ministries. We pray in the name of Christ, who died and is risen indeed. Amen. (1 Corinthians 1:18-25)
The United Methodist Committee on Relief enacts the faith of United Methodists globally. UMCOR is the arm of the church that responds in crisis to help communities rebuild. UMCOR is committed to those people in need of relief, healing and restoration.
When crisis occurs, UMCOR not only responds, but also stays for the slow work of rebuilding, making the impact of its work long lasting.
While staying involved with relief and assistance for long-lasting impact might not seem efficient in our culture of instant gratification, it is how UMCOR is able to help people become self-sustaining again, or for the first time, in the wake of natural disaster, drought or the diseases of poverty.
All of the work that is done by The United Methodist Church through UMCOR helps people get their lives back, instills hope and builds up communities. This work of hope and restoration is what Jesus calls us to do. Our gifts on UMCOR Sunday next week allow this to continue.