I've had a money-filled week. It hasn't been filled with money in the "make it rain" kinda way. No, that would be nice. But it's been filled with money in the "God has sharpened my awareness to a particular conversational thread" kinda way.
I love it when this happens. It feels like it rains and then pours, like particular themes keep coming back up over and over. When we were struggling with infertility, everyone around us got pregnant. When I was thinking about evangelism, everyone around me started inviting their thoughtful friends to think about Jesus. God's doing something.
It's easy to assume that these things are happening more and more frequently around me, that there are more babies, more evangelism, more talk about money. But I'm not sure that's true. I think that seasons like this just sharpen my awareness, that God helps me notice and remember particular things that are happening around me day-to-day.
And this week, it's money and vulnerability. Here are some stories:
During the Urban Plunge element of the missions trip, we wandered around Union station with $2 for dinner. I was suddenly aware of how much food costs. Two dollars could feed a family if it had to, but it could barely feed me.
In South Florida this weekend we visited Church by the Glades with the Lavins. They had received an e-mail that week, informing them that the next week or two would not be a great time to bring a visitor to the church (as the church would be having their annual series on tithing). They brought us anyways and it was fantastic. The church was unashamed, sensitive, clear in its conversation about money.
We visited a new Small Group at Chantilly Bible Church up in Northern Virginia tonight. Although it was their first meeting, they invited a couple of missionaries to come, since the broader church was engaged in its Missions Emphasis Week. Since I'll only be in VA Mon-Wed of this week, we went up tonight, presented about InterVarsity, asked for prayer support and asked for money.
Paul wrote this at the end of his beautiful letter to the Romans, not as an afterthought, but almost as the pinnacle:
But now that there is no more place for me to work in these regions, and since I have been longing for many years to see you, I plan to do so when I go to Spain. I hope to visit you while passing through and to have you assist me on my journey there, after I have enjoyed your company for a while. - Rom. 15:23-24
Talking about money makes people in ministry feel vulnerable. Maybe it makes everyone feel vulnerable. Why is that?