Aspects of Community

For the past ten months I have been stuck on a song: “Kind and Generous” by Natalie Merchant. According to my iPod, I have listened to it more than 85 times. The first line is, “You've been so kind and generous. I don't know how you keep on giving...” It has become a sort of quiet anthem for me.

Every time I play it, I think of Unity of Portland. I guess I hear it as an expression of the awe and the gratitude that I feel for so many in our community who keep on giving and giving. I also feel it as a prayer and affirmation that we are an ever more giving community.

One of the most important aspects of community is to serve as an avenue for each of us to give the love that we are, to give our time and talent and treasure and in doing so transform ourselves and the world.  The vision of a larger Unity of Portland is not about overflowing attendance or overflowing coffers, although these are likely to happen as we increasingly give the love that we are. The vision for our community is overflowing giving – Christ in us expressing.

For the Christ that you are I say “... For your kindness, I'm in debt to you. For your selflessness, my admiration. And for everything you've done, you know I'm bound, I'm bound to thank you for it... I want to thank you for so many gifts you gave in love with tenderness. I want to thank you for your generosity, the love and the honesty that you gave me. I want to thank you, show my gratitude, my love and my respect for you. I want to thank you.”

Thank you.