Empty …

Brothers and Sisters,

This week, I want to talk briefly about two things: one is very practical and one is more spiritual. First, the more practical. I am excited by the opportunity over the course of
this summer to reach out to our neighbors and provide snacks for them! This is a wonderful chance to help families and small children in our community who are facing a persistent problem—hunger. So many people struggle with hunger and/or food insecurity in our world, wondering where their next meal is going to come from. Our Summer Snacks Project is one chance for us to do our part to combat hunger here in Durham. And there are so many ways to get involved!

First, you can help out by going and purchasing food items that are easy for folks to make for lunch or for a snack. Second, you can help out by making a monetary donation to the project. This allows the Missions Team to go out and purchase needed food items. If you want to donate money, please make your check payable to HVBC and write “Summer Snacks Project” in the Memo line. Finally, you can help out by donating your time either by packing bags to be delivered or by volunteering to help deliver the bags. If you’d like to be contacted about either packing or delivering, please reach out to Julie Stoops, Leigh Bigger, or Barbara Rowley!

The other thing I wanted to share with you all is something I was thinking about the other day. I had gone on a run for the first time in a long time (meaning my legs have been
barking at me for a while now!) and was listening to music on my phone. I had the phone set to shuffle through all my songs and one came up that I hadn’t heard in a while. It was called
“Empty” by a band named The Sowing Season. “Empty” is a slower song with a simple tune, but the lyrics are beautiful. They speak about the experiences that Mary, Thomas, and
Saul have with the risen Christ. In each verse, each of these people are reminded of the incredible love of God, the love that raised Jesus from the dead, overcame their doubts, and
forgave their sins. The song gently points to the message of the gospel—that God offers new life through the resurrected Christ. These three people enter the song empty, but they leave it filled up with the abundant grace of God. It re-minded me of the ways in which God fills each of us up, the subtle ways that God gives us life and encourages us to bless and give life to others. The God that is spoken of in “Empty” is one who is loving and generous and kind. May we seek to imitate our God in all that we do. May we continue to follow the example of God’s son, Jesus Christ. May we always listen for the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

If you would like to listen to Empty, you can find it right here.

Grace and peace to you all,