Thankful In Not Knowing The Outcome

Thankful In Not Knowing The Outcome

Oct 26, 2017

by Pastor JR Shick

Keith Edwin Shick JR, known by family and close friends as JR, has been the Pastor of the White Cloud Seventh Day Baptist Church, MI, since 2014. JR has been married to his wife Sarah for thirteen years and has two children, daughter Kashya, 11, and son Keith III, 8.

One of the key reasons we do not “GO and DO” work for the Kingdom is the fear of it not being a success.

In the process of learning we must always ask questions, figure out the outcome, and then put what we have learned into practice. Most all of us have heard the quote from Yoda in the movie Empire Strikes Back — “Do. Or do not. There is no try.” Most of us tend to go with the idea, “I will just give it a try.” Time and energy are critical in the decision-making process. I heard someone once say, “They were a Christian, but not a practicing Christian.” WHAT?!! That is like saying you are allergic to water!! You are alive or dead!!! You either do or not do! To be a follower of Christ you believe HE is alive and follow HIS instructions. All of them! James 1:22 “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”

Now remember, we are all called to be disciples of Christ. Ask the question: what is a disciple and what does he do? Disciples are an understudy or an apprentice. They learn and then do what they have been taught. Being followers or disciples of Jesus Christ, we learn from HIM and do what HE has told or shown us to do. Some examples include John 13:34-35, “Love” like HE does; “Serve” like Jesus did in Mark 10:45. Also there is Matthew 28:19-20, “Go.” This last one tells us to take all that we have learned and “DO.”

Most all of us have trust issues. If you are a believer in Jesus Christ, then you have trust issues. You do not trust that Jesus Christ is in control and you want to do things your way. One of the key reasons we do not “GO and DO” work for the Kingdom is the fear of it not being a success. Jesus never said everything would go your way and that your life would be easy. HE just said it would be worth it!! The Bible never said anything about the disciples retiring and living the easy life on a beach in Galilee. Fear should never be the end of doing something for the Kingdom; it should only be a motive to ask Jesus for courage. We did that as a church last year and it impacted the whole community. We did a ROCC (Real Opportunities Connecting Community) the Block event. It was amazing — that alone had an impact — but that was only a starting point. The biggest impact our little church had is found in the White Cloud Elementary School.

There are many here in White Cloud who serve in the church who are or have served in education in some way: as school board members, teachers, and a custodian. You can even throw in parents and grandparents of students who attend. The connection came from ROCC the Block and how the families reacted about the gifts the children received from the prize drawings.

Meetings were held after the event about how things worked or how things could be improved. In the meeting, a question was stated something like, “Wouldn’t it be great if we could bless the kids all year long?” This was followed by another question, “Do you think we could do something for the school?” The idea came to bless the teachers and then that could benefit the children.

One of the members of the church, who is a teacher, had the theme for the school year, “We are Superheroes.” Teachers have the power of teaching and the students have the power of learning. That theme carried over to the new idea of “Teachers are Superheroes, but even Superheroes need help once in a while.” A meeting was set with the Principal of the school to pitch the idea at a staff meeting. The Principal loved the idea and agreed that I could come in on behalf of the church and talk to the staff. Teachers were asked what they could use in their classrooms that would make their job easier. They just needed to fill out a wish list and we would see what the church could do. The lists would be picked up before Thanksgiving so we could deliver the requests before Christmas break. Almost all of the teachers filled out a wish list. Most of teachers filled out a list with real simple requests like: Expo markers, Clorox wipes, copy paper etc. There was one request for a whole classroom of hard cover dictionaries! The P.E. teacher asked for some baseball gloves. As it turned out, the church was able to purchase every requested item.

That is not all: the Women’s Circle of the church wrapped all the requested items with CHRISTmas wrapping paper and then delivered them all to the teachers with a card that they read to their classes stating that all the teachers, students, and gifts had been prayed over. In addition to those gifts, a teacher put on Facebook that a child from her class was

in need of shoes for winter. This set the ball rolling for the church to collect not only shoes for students, but snow gear as well. Shoes for that student along with fifty complete outfits of jackets, snow pants, hats, gloves and snow boots of various sizes were given to the school so that any student that needed them had them available to use.

The Principal was so moved by the church’s generosity she gave our church name to be used for Time Release Bible Study. That is a Bible Study done for school children during the school day. About thirty children are pulled from school and come once a month to do a Bible Study in our church!! BUT WAIT THERE IS MORE!! The Women’s Circle made up jumbo candy bars for the teachers for their birthdays or half-birthdays and prayed for them during their meeting once a month. This gave me the opportunity to visit the school monthly to deliver the goodies by putting them into the staff mailboxes. The relationships that are being made at the school are impacting the whole community. Not just individuals, but churches and businesses are looking to team with us to help spread the GOOD NEWS. Due to all of this, I was asked by a teacher to come to the school once a week to meet with a group of teachers that gathers together to pray for staff, students and their families.

It is easy to say “NO” because of the lack of trust in Christ and fear that grips us from time to time. I had no idea how this was going to turn out and I still don’t. It has gone better than I could have hoped or imagined. Sometimes you have to say “DO!” DO, or do not, win or lose, failure or success but never just “try.” Either way you will be thankful!!

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