One Great Hour of Sharing is an offering that makes the love of Christ real for individuals and communities around the world who suffer the effects of disaster, conflict, or severe economic hardship. Started in 1946 prompted by Bishop- Henry Knox Sherrill of the Episcopal church, our nation was called to raise 0ne Million dollars in one hour to help people and a world in need following WWII. During the first three years Episcopalians raised $3.8 million and in 1949 church leaders from many denominations organized to coordinate the separate campaigns of America churches into a campaign titled “One Great Hour of Sharing”. Pulling together they demonstrated to the world the great power generated when followers of Christ unite in a common cause. In the 1990’s receipts often exceeded $20 million dollars annually.
Our world is still in need. We here at First Congregational Church participate in this ecumenical effort to collect special gifts to assist those in need. Banks and suggested giving calendars were distributed Sunday 2/17/19 at worship and if you didn’t get one, there are extras still available in the Bess Fulton Room near the Outreach Giving Tree. They will be collected starting March 17. Or an online offering can be made thru the UCC web site at https://www.ucc.org/donate_to_oghs
In the children’s message we are reminded that it isn’t how much you give, rather that by giving, you allow God’s grace to provide what is needed. Our only two choices in this life are not showing up and showing up to the raw hunger of the world with only a bag lunch that we packed the night before and what happens is the miracle of grace where 5000 people are fed. Our God gratefully accepts whatever gift we can bring up that hill, gives thanks and feeds the whole world with it.
When this kid refused to factor in the gap between the need and what he had, and refused to listen to his heart’s drumbeat of shame that said it’s ridiculous to offer something so inadequate—when this little boy showed up anyway the not-enough that he had became enough.
Showing up is enough.
Enough is showing up.
When you get to the top of that hill, awkwardly shuffling your feet because you’re so nervous that you don’t have what it takes — our God laughs with joy, unconcerned with what you’re bringing or not bringing, because God makes everything He touches “enough”. God is just delighted to see you coming up this hill, He’ll take it from here.