It All Began with a Mustard Seed
Dear Mustard Seed Family,
Last week Wangeri Maathaidied. She was a wonderful role model, the first African woman to win a Nobel Peace prize, and a planter of seeds that literally transformed communities around the world. Her life story reminded me that the creative potential to be world changers lies within all of us. It highlighted the importance of the work that MSA does in stirring imagination and stimulating creativity as we resource and network followers of Jesus to make a difference in God’s world.
Exciting Times Ahead for MSA
In January, as I reported in our recent MSA Happenings, we will relaunch the MSA e-zine as an exciting new publication focused on imagination and creativity. It will increase our ability to share inspirational stories like Wangeri Maathai’s and provide resources that stir our faith and equip us to initiate creative kingdom responses to the challenges of our volatile world.
In September 2012 we will begin a semester-away program for college and University students on environmental issues. This will enable students to re-imagine how to live more sustainably, both environmentally and economically, in ways that reflect their faith values. They will also learn how to be agents of change in their communities by creating local, sustainable possibilities in partnership with communities and congregations.
There are exciting times ahead for MSA, but we cannot accomplish it alone.
Just before our Celtic retreat in August, I wrote a blog post entitled Whatever Happened to Thomas – When Doubt Overwhelms Us in which I shared: I am struggling because I want to see God’s plan mapped out and I want to see it happen now, on my terms. I want to see big donations come in, but God is sending small mustard seed donations that move us forward one step at a time. I feel like Thomas who needed to see Jesus in the flesh with the scars from the nails in his hands and feet in order to believe.
We needed $500 before the Celtic retreat to clear the area where the pole barn, our first Mustard Seed Village building, would stand. I shared my discouragement with a friend at church and she said: I’ll do it! I’ll raise that $500. And she did. Over the next week she asked friends at church to contribute $10, $20, $50 to the cause. That gift was immediately doubled by another unexpected gift of $500. The land was cleared and at the Celtic retreat on August 13th we held a very moving dedication ceremony on the cleared area.
In the last couple of weeks we have seen these mustard seed gifts multiplied many times. Indeed some very generous gifts have been contributed as a result, and in the next couple of months we will begin work on the first building at the Mustard Seed Village. I am convinced that, without the initial gift from St. Albans parishioners, this would never have happened.
Many of you responded to our challenge in May to give us a leg up so we can help you more effectively create a future of hope and promise. Our summer networking mentioned in the recent MSA Happenings was made possible by your gifts.
Will you say I’ll do it today?
Again we need your help, your mustard seeds, to move us forward. The coming year will be a monumental one for us as we relaunch our e-zine and begin the semester away program at the Mustard Seed Village. We will also host a series of events designed to stimulate our imaginations and stir our creativity to respond to the growing challenges we face. The MSA team is passionate about the need to provide resources that prepare us to live as more effective followers of Christ in our turbulent and broken world — and we invite you to join us.
Would you, like my friend at church, say I’ll do it! and partner with us in launching MSA into the future with a gift of $10, $20 or $50? Or consider a monthly commitment of $10-$50 for the coming year?