Molly Morton | Serving in Ireland
Each day at lunch I try to open my Lectio 365 app and listen to the Scripture and thoughts offered there. I call it Lectio Lunch. Today the Scripture was Matthew 15:32-36, a shorter description of Jesus feeding the five thousand. At one point in the story, Jesus asked his disciples, “How many loaves do you have?” It struck me that Jesus was not only asking a practical question but also a relational one. He is asking, what do you have, what are your gifts, what are your skills, what do you bring to the table? Jesus asks because he wants to know what he’s working with, but I think he also asks because he wants the disciples and the thousands that have been following to act outside of their known capacities, to go outside their comfort zone.
In the last few weeks, God has been making evident to me that one of the loaves I have is presence. I work on a church staff with two married men who each have three children under the age of ten. I am not married, I do not have children, but I do have time and space to be present. As I’ve learned over the last few years, presence can be all I bring to the table. I don’t have to bring skills, gifts, and talents, even though I do have those, many times what a situation needs is presence. As an introvert and a chronic helper, just being with someone can seem like not enough to me. But I’ve realized that I get to be present. I have the time, the space, and the margin to be present in a way that my colleagues can’t be due to their own family obligations.
One of my favorite ways to do this is to host people in my home. I was blessed with my home in the center of Greystones, in a bustling neighborhood and within walking distance of the church. I have been making it a point to have more people in my home for dinner, coffee, etc. Yesterday morning, I hosted my Thursday morning Bible study ladies and their kids (see the photo above). We drank good coffee, ate good pastries, chatted, laughed, planned trips, prayed for each other, and were generally present for each other. It lasted for four hours! It was a dream for me. When I first viewed this home, this is what I envisioned. As some of you know, I have been praying specifically for friendships with other women, close and deep friendships. The women in this group are beginning to give me the answer to that prayer.
Thank you for praying with me and for my ministry here in Ireland.
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