Sleep on This: The welfare of the city (May 26)
Good evening, friend!
Cyndi and I were walking in Gig Harbor the other day, one of our favorite things to do. As we passed one of the many little shops that is shuttered, we lamented anew our concern for those business owners and, frankly, for the economic welfare of our town. It grieves us to imagine the steep road to recovery that lies ahead…a road that many of them may not be able to climb.
We began talking about what we, as a church, could do to help those small business owners—beyond, of course, ordering take-out! Cyndi had a great idea.
What if, when the time comes that stores can be re-opened, Chapel Hill were to offer a workforce of people who could come in, without pay, and do the extra cleaning, sanitizing, stocking…whatever is required? They might not be able to afford hiring the help they need at the very time when they need extra help! Wouldn’t that bless them?
I think it’s a great idea. I sent a note to the Chamber of Commerce and to our mayor, making that offer. If accepted, I hope I can count on hundreds of you to step up!
Jeremiah 29:7 says, “But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the Lord on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare.” These words were written to the Jews who had been carried off to exile following their defeat at the hands of the Babylonians. It’s actually a pretty amazing admonition. Instead of sabotaging the city of their captors in a show of defiance, they were to seek its welfare and pray for it!
We who live in in this region…Gig Harbor, Port Orchard or wherever…hardly feel like we are in exile, although Jesus DID say, “…my kingdom is not of this world.” But in this moment of mutual challenge, wouldn’t it be wonderful if the Church of Jesus rose up in a very practical way to bless our local businesses? I’ll keep you posted!
Dear Lord, as I lay me down to sleep, I pray for the local business leaders who are struggling to hold things together. Make them brave and creative, speed the day when their doors can re-open and inspire me with ideas for how I might seek their welfare…and the welfare of my city. Amen.