I have the pleasure of seeing the fruit of our labors. I see it in the shy child, who over time learns to speak from the pulpit with grace and courage. I see it in the acts of goodness and kindness from our children. I see it in the children’s ability to write prayers, using such beautiful sacred language. I see it in our youth when they become passionate about an issue of social justice. I see it in so many, many ways and all of them are like little gifts that are presented to me.
I was given one of these gifts on Sunday. In our Journey to Adulthood (J2A- youth) class, we were doing a unit on Stewardship. We looked at the economics of scarcity, the mindset of abundance. We looked at making choices, and they learned about the difficult task our Trustees face each in year in creating a budget. Mid-way through the class, I gave everyone Monopoly money and I told them we were having an auction. Each person got $3000 and were given a list of auction items. Some of the auction items included: straight As for life, housing for everyone who is homeless, having your dream job, curing all the world’s diseases, an oceanfront home, being closer to God, never being lonely, a trip to New York City, always having a good relationship with your family, endless gift cards to Dunkin’ Donuts and more. As always in working with teens, the auction went from the sublime to the ridiculous and there were many, many laughs. After the auction ended, they shared what they won and why they bid on those items. This also got pretty funny! I then charged them with coming up with one winning item as a group, as I wanted them to understand the challenges that are faced with lots of folks trying to agree on what’s best. And that is when they presented me with a gift. They decided that what they would bid on was to always be closer God. That was their one item. They said that if they had that, everything else would follow. Imagine that! Seed planted, roots grounded and a most beautiful flower blooms!