It seems that three unwritten qualifications for vocational ministry that every young pastor needs to have are: a strong back, a pickup truck, or at least an uncanny natural ability level for Tetris. Furthermore, it would be advantageous to come to grips sooner than later, that even one of the three would ensure ministry sustainability in any context!

This week, as you might easily guess, I helped someone move... ...again. And, while this has become somewhat commonplace for me and many others connected to the local church, I'm reminded that for many people, this is necessarily the case. Many of our friends who don't come from a church background find it very difficult to assemble enough people to make their move, even a simple one one across town, even bearable. In considering this, I want to bring to light today how much of an opportunity helping someone move really is to make the Gospel tangible and accessible to everyday life. Here are a few ideas as well for helping a friend move. (No heavy lifting required)

1. Bring a meal. Not thanksgiving. Think about food without utensils, tables, or chairs.
2. Bring packing supplies. Not enough to bubble wrap the house, but extra just in case. 
3. Watch a pet. Not until the next moon cycle, but for an hour to give it relief from chaos. 
4. Offer a vehicle. Not for the winter solstice, but until they can pack / unpack their own. 

Christ followers have been challenged to love God, love each other, and love the world. When a person sacrifices their own time, and gives some sweat equity to help someone else, they look a lot like what Jesus would look like if he were living in our neighborhood, shopping at our grocery stores, and working in the next cubicle down the line. Don't you think he would be open to lending a hand if someone needed it? I believe he would! So, why don't you make an effort to be available next time help is needed?

Pastor Milo

Local website which calls itself a city guide for best things to do, and best places to eat in WNY said this this week about the Kingdom Bound Festival. Mind you, this is not a faith based publication. Check out what they had to say:

"Music connects people. Faith connects people. And that's exactly what this festival is all about - connecting people from all walks of life through faith-filled music." 

That is a pretty great review! If you are new to our area, or if you are a person who is generally more comfortable with an organ and a choir over a drum-set and a couple guitars, you may not be aware of this annual 4 day event. The Kingdom Bound Festival is New York's largest and longest running Christian music festival is celebrating 33 years this summer. The lineup features 50+ artists and speakers from across the country and Canada. 

Today, we will shuttle a number of our young people out to Six Flags Darien Lake and enjoy amusement park rides, and some of the best Christian artists currently touring the United States. This will undoubtedly be a lot of fun. Yet, it's not just about having a good time and participating in some uplifting worship experiences. 

I believe that between the Great Commission and The Great Commandment given by Jesus Christ in Scripture, we are given some core truths to live by. Regional gatherings like this one give us an opportunity to make these things tangible.  I believe what will connect with every person who attends, both people of faith, and people far from Jesus are these three ideas: 
   1. You matter to Christ. (He sacrificed everything for you.) 
   2. You belong in the Church. (We have a place for you.) 
   3. You can make a difference in the Community. (Come join us.)

40,000 people will attend Kingdom Bound this year. How many of them will truly be connected to the source of Living Water so they will never thirst again? I propose this has much more to do with us as an active local church and as engaged fellow believers than it does for the organizers of the event. When done well, this is why Kingdom Bound will connect with people. This is why a "church event" will get local publicity, and make a splash for the Kingdom (pun intended.) What role might you play? 

Pastor Milo