May 18, 2020

One of St. Paul’s UCC graduating seniors, Stephen McCarthy, was asked what advice he would give to the children in our congregation. He said, “You can never put too much good out into the world.” Wow!

I’ve been on the receiving end of “good” so many times in my life.  One that comes to mind happened about 19 years ago, when we first moved from Wisconsin to Maui.  We were church hunting, and attended Po`okela UCC one Sunday. An older gentleman, Bob Johnson, greeted us, and got our contact information. The very next day, he called and invited me to attend the Wednesday lunch time Bible study that met at his house.  I knew no one, and I figured I had nothing to lose.  I was finishing seminary on-line, so had free time on my hands. So that Wednesday I arrived at 11:30 for lunch. I was welcomed, we had a great time of Bible study and prayer, and I had one of my first introductions to some local food, including of all things, Spam Musubi (think Spam inside a sushi roll). Bob and all of that small group became dear friends.

A close up of sushi

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We had visited a number of other churches, but this was the first one that had reached out personally. Bob Johnson, unbeknownst to him, was hugely influential in welcoming me not only to that congregation, but also to the denomination I now call home. Bob put good into the world, in many ways far beyond inviting a stranger to his home for a Bible study. But that one act of hospitality, of good, changed the direction of my life.

Stephen’s words were both simple, and profound. They encourage me to be the good I want to see in this world, to pay attention to the good that I receive, to give thanks, and to pay it forward.

We never know what one act of kindness can do to change the world, one person at a time. ~ Anne

PS – I do not like green eggs and Spam. Anne, I am.

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