How can we create abundance in the world?
By Jack Jezreel
One of the Lenten season’s treasured readings is the story of the loaves and fishes, the only miracle story found in all four Gospels. In it, a few loaves and a couple of fish not only feed thousands of people but there is an overflow of leftovers! It speaks to the kind of abundance that comes with sharing in the life and vision of Jesus. There is some kind of—what shall we call it—sacred multiplier effect going on!
For the last several years, Bread for the World and JustFaith Ministries (JFM) have been exploring together this phenomenon of faith multiplying goodness and creating abundance in the world.
As many of you know, JFM creates resources that are meant to deepen faith, widen prayer, and prompt new commitments on behalf of God’s most vulnerable people. Our tagline for many years has been, “JustFaith Ministries changes people; those people change the world, with God’s help.”
Our version of the loaves and fishes story is that JFM graduates make new commitments to organizations that create hope where there was none, abundance where there had been scarcity, love where there had been neglect, community where there was fear, and possibilities where there was only despair. Stories of authentic change seem to multiply goodness in astounding ways and on an extraordinary scale! Consider how the life of one transformed person can impact the lives of dozens, hundreds, or even thousands of others.
Many JustFaith graduates make their way to the invitation and work of Bread because it has so thoughtfully, prayerfully multiplied the capacity of faith to change the world with effective strategies in order to impact the political possibility. What we could not possibly do on our own, we can do together because Bread has gathered, educated, organized, and inspired us!
Over these years of collaboration, JFM is proud to have had a role in inspiring new commitments to Bread and we hope to increase those numbers in the years ahead. So, we invite all Bread members to consider offering one or more of our programs in your church. The typical result is that participants get fired up about the vision of God’s justice in the world and want to find an effective way to channel that newfound passion.
So, help us help you! Our only reason for being is to inspire commitments to the work of God’s justice and healing. Our aim is to add to the active membership of Bread for the World. Consider hosting one of our introductory workshops or sponsoring one of our programs in your local church or community.
Bread and JFM together invite God’s Spirit to inspire, grow, and even multiply a new possibility for this wonderful and wounded world.
Jack Jezreel is executive director of JustFaith Ministries, based in Louisville, KY. For more information, see www.justfaith.org or call (502) 429-0865.