I was recently at a church leadership conference for young, beautiful, next generation leaders like myself and 14,000 of our closest friends. It was an amazing two days that re-energized me and refocused my passion for what I do.
As part of the conference, the organizing team passed out $10 bills to everyone at the conference (I have to say that the money I'm sure was donated by a wonderful sponsor whose name is escaping me). Our challenge was to use the $10 and multiply it to make a BIG difference for the kingdom of God. No other instructions were given. We were just supposed to make a BIG difference. Specific multiples were not mentioned.
Their point was that it might just be $10 to me but since we all got $10 that's $140,000 for the kingdom. I mean I might not be able to do a whole lot with $10 but $140k is a lot more. And if I multiply my $10 by at least doubling it and so does everyone else that's $280,000 for the kingdom of God.
BUT… what if we tried to multiply it more than 2x? And what if I tried to convince others to join in this challenge? Then we aren't just talking $10 and 14k people. We are talking about infinite possibilities; and isn't that was the kingdom of God is all about – the infinite possibilities.
Wow. As I looked at my envelope with $10 and thought about how I held in my hand the possibility for infinite change, I was a bit overwhelmed. And I decided that this was too much to ponder on an empty stomach so I tucked my envelope in my binder (as to not spend my $10 on a burrito at Moe's) and set it down in my chair to hold my spot.
I know. I KNOW! I held the power for infinite change in my hands and left it in a chair in an arena with 14,000 other people. I came back from my Tex-Mex fix ready to worship and change the world only to find that the people next to me had decided to move (I guess that they didn't like my singing) and had taken my binder by mistake. Yes I am giving them the benefit of the doubt that they took my binder as there was another binder still there – just not mine (always put your name on your binder). Of course, when they discovered that they had a bonus $10 – I did notice that they weren't running back to find me.
I wasn't going to let my lost $10 get me down. It wasn't mine to start with. It was for the kingdom and I just prayed that the binder thieves would take their challenge seriously and spend their (now) $20 on something more fruitful than I could come up with.
And I left it at that.
That was until yesterday when the people I went to the conference with asked what we were all doing with our money. Ugh! What money? I'd lost mine within 45 minutes! And I felt that nagging feeling that I hate. The one that tells me God is asking me to do something. Something new. Something different. Something that I might just not want to do. And I said in front of God and everybody, "If I get an extra $10 this week what I was not expecting, THEN I'll decide what to do with it."
A-ha! A challenge! God really seems to laugh when I issue Him a challenge.
It seems that our financial person at the church had just finished setting up the possibilities for online donations. So as web-mistress, I go online to create the button/link on our web site and I decide to test it out. I login to PayPal and discover that we have an extra $20 sitting in our account. I ask my husband about this and he says that we must have sold something on eBay and not cashed in on it yet.
(Insert the sound of how you think God laughs here) So not only did I find my unexpected $10 but it was already multiplied by the time I found it. So I donated it online (I got to be the first to check it out).
Now back to exponential functions. It seems to me that if we have an unknown amount of money and an unknown amount of times it can be multiplied then we have an exponential equation. The amount we are talking about has infinite possibilities.
I keep wondering how I can make the biggest impact. I'm not an inventor so I can't patent the next big thing. My book is only halfway through and as I've never published before I'm not sure it'll be the next best seller.
So I'm doing something that I don't like to do but that I feel is important to do. I'm asking you to join me in this challenge. Do you have it in you to match the $10 (or more) that I've put in? I'd LOVE for you to donate to The Lighthouse Church via our new online button on the left at www.lighthouseumc.net . That way we could see the exponential equation in action as you put in and ask your friends to do the same. But if you aren't comfortable with that (and I know many aren't), I challenge you to make at least a $10 difference for the kingdom of God somewhere. I'll be blogging more later on the importance of giving and safe ways to do so but for now, please consider joining me in this challenge.
The possibilities are infinite.
Until Everyone Hears,