Words from the Keynote Speakers, Randy Evans and Shelley Webb
I had the privilege of presenting as a keynote speaker at the 2019 Missional Wisdom Foundation National Gathering. This year’s theme was “Threads,” and in my message, I reminded everyone that we are all deeply loved and are not alone. As a Foundation, we are consistently working hard to create space for those who feel unwelcomed and unseen within the local church. This is the mission and vision that intertwines us together. I challenged those at the National Gathering to move from a transactional mindset to a transformational mindset. In other words, focusing on each individual relationship with the intent of creating scared space for healing. We accomplish this through building platforms to amplify those voices that are continually silenced. One of the misconceptions we learned about was at times we feel like we’re the only ones doing our specific work. This is what leads to bitterness, burnout, and becoming jaded. During our time together, we were given opportunities to listen to other’s stories and learned that we are better working together. The three days of the 2019 MWF National Gathering, we were reminded that we’re all in this together, we are loved, and surrounded by support.
"Five years ago, Sharing House embarked on a spiritual journey and evaluation of our ministry practices. Founded 39 years ago, our faith-based collaborative community outreach began to offer food, clothing, financial assistance and self-sufficiency programming to ‘help’ the poor. Food was given to those in need in a box, handed out over a galley door, that literally and figuratively divided those who had resources to give and those who needed desperately to receive. Missional wisdom calls out to even established ministries such as this, to see things in a new and inviting way. Instead of seeing people as objects of generosity, the way of Jesus demands we see one another in relationship. We all have needs and we all have resources to share in beloved community. It's taken five years to transform our view to practice the way of Jesus. We are all in this life together. To change the direction of a well-established ministry took a good dose of courage and grace. Our programs and services now invite everyone's participation, including decision making power around board tables. Every voice has opportunity to be heard, and anyone who wants to volunteer and share gifts are empowered to do so. Sharing in the power of community, where everyone is respected and heard, has broken down barriers. We know each other's names and stories, we relish in common ground and unique takes on life. We feel God's spirit leading us and even surprise us with the diversity and capabilities we each possess to share.”