Making Church Matter

Happiness Works

January 12, 2012

Two interesting things happened this past week for the people who work here at Church of the Nativity.  First, we had our biggest (non-Christmas/non Easter) weekend ever. Over 4200 people (that’s a lot of people). The energy and life of the place was palpable and exciting. What a great way to kick off a New Year. That is a cause for joy for all of us, but is especially gratifying to our staff who are investing themselves in this place on a daily basis.

In the midst of that crowd there was a group of seminarians from St. Paul’s Seminary (in Washington DC) who had previously requested to join our weekend experience.  They worshiped at 9am and then shadowed staff members to learn more about their jobs and what they do, as well as get a behind the scenes look at our programs. Subsequently we participated in a Q & A about what they had seen and heard and experienced. It was very encouraging to see these young men excited about what is happening at Nativity.  More than anything else, they were impressed with our staff.

In many places in the Bible, God zeroes in on a specific person, whom he calls by name: the call of Moses, the call of David, the call of Jeremiah, the calls of Mary and Joseph, and Peter and Paul, and many others. In each of these callings people are doing one thing and God calls them to do something else, they’ve got a job or a career but he gives them a calling.

The Bible teaches us that these “callings” are very important, critically important to what God is doing in the world. In fact, every time God is getting ready to do something, he calls someone, somewhere to help him do it. Don’t know why because he doesn’t need the help, but that’s the way he does it.

In accepting their calling these heroes of the Bible come to understand that they’re part of a larger mission and something bigger. They are effective and successful and, not incidently, happy.

I believe that God has given the staff of this church a calling to serve here and as they have accepted that calling success has followed. Our understanding, that we’re part of something bigger God is doing, has also begun to grow. And that is just fun to be a part of.

God has a call on your life too. Whoever you are, wherever you are, God has a call on your life.  And your willingness to get to know it and answer it, will absolutely impact your effectiveness and your happiness.

Anyway, that’s what we’re talking about this weekend. This is a huge and important issue in your life, so don’t miss this weekend:

  • Live, here in Timonium, at any of our five weekend services: Saturdays 5pm, Sundays 9 & 10:30am, 12n & 5:30pm
  • Live online, Sundays at 10:30am and 5:30pm.

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  1. We at Nativity know how proud we are to be a part of a parish that is vibrant, faith-filled and staffed by a group of individuals who wear their happiness and joy of serving on their faces. Now it is very exciting to know that future priests are wisely looking at this place as an example of how to “make it matter!” Blessings on all of those who make it matter weekly at Nativity!

  2. I feel so blessed that you listened to your calling as I believe God has used you and Nativity to help me answer mine. It’s definitely not the easy path but belonging to a faith community like ours makes us stronger and keeps us closer to God. It is so exciting to be a part of the movement! God is so awesome!

  3. I echo the above comments. Somehow Father White’s messages so often seem as if they are directed right at me – just what I need to hear at that moment, to feed my soul. So glad our staff is getting the much deserved attention. Thanks to all!

  4. I agree! The energy and life of the place WAS palpable and exciting….so much so that it brought tears to my eyes. I told a friend afterwards that I went to mass Sunday in the very environment I have always dreamed of celebrating mass! What’s not to be excited about? I heard every word of a wonderful meaningul homily while I looked around the cafe and great room at people of all ages dressed in their finest purple! I’m a member of a parish where babies have places where they can behave like babies while young parents celebrate mass; a place where you can have a cup of coffee if that’s what you need to help you focus on the message; a place where everyone is smiling! How can God not be smiling down on the scene we had there Sunday! It was amazing! Many many hanks to Father White and our wonderful wonderful staff – you made it happen!

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