Cup of Coffee?
Mission work is the engine that propels the church forward, making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. Effective missional engagement is a sign of a vital, healthy, growing church. Missional outreach is rooted in Christ’s command to love God and love neighbors.
Who are our neighbors and how are we to love them? Jesus was asked a similar question in Luke 10. Jesus responded with the Parable of the Good Samaritan. See a need. Discern God’s will. Meet the need. Exceed expectations. Witness to the fact that your missional outreach is because Jesus told you to roll up your sleeves and get in the game! Leave the rest up to God.
See a need. The Pieter’s Family Life Center (1025 Commons Way, Rochester, NY 14623), a part of Heritage Christian Services, is in need to reopen their coffee shop, but is unable to afford to hire staff to operate it. Pre-pandemic, the coffee shop was a sacred place for fellowship, devotions, meeting old friends and making new ones. It served families, staff, and the general public.
I take my son, Christian, to the Life Center each Friday for him to run on a treadmill in the exercise room, while I wait in the lobby. Boy, I could sure use a good cup of coffee. I started to think, dream, pray, and discern. That started a year ago.
The Rush church partners with Heritage Christian Services to host our day program. Perhaps we could open new missional opportunities to meet the community’s need for coffee, fellowship, and devotions at Pieter’s Family Life Center?
Discern God’s will. I spoke with Christian about the possibility of starting up the coffee shop. He loved working in the school coffee shop his last six years of High School. Yep. He liked the idea. I spoke with numerous leaders throughout Heritage Christian Services. Given COVID precautions, the response was, without exception, enthusiastic. I consulted with our Lay Leader for Missions, Erma Perkins, who agreed to opening another missional opportunity for our church family.
Meet the need. Every idea needs a plan to get it launched off the ground. A Ministry Action Plan (MAP) was created and approved by all stakeholders, including our Leadership Ministry Team. The goal is to open the coffee shop one day per week, starting this Fall.
Can you volunteer a few hours a week or month? Can you make and serve coffee? Can you lead others in a short, daily devotions? Can you run a cash register or organize a small business? Got a retirement plan? Do you want to serve others and make new friends?
Is God calling you to be on the cutting edge of the Missions and Ministries of the Rush United Methodist Church?
I’m asking you to think, pray, discern God’s will. Outreach opportunities are not mutually exclusive; you can still dedicate your time and effort to your current work. The potential coffee shop is a new, groundbreaking opportunity to love our neighbors in the name of Jesus, exceed their needs, and invite them into our loving congregation. Will you join me?
God loves you, beloved Rush United Methodist family, and so do I.