While driving back to town after a family vacation, a feeling came over me a feeling I can best describe as "coming home." I have only lived in Minot for a year, but I have to say that I have experienced something truly special in this place.
Over the past year I have heard countless stories from so many people about the changes Minot has experienced over the years. When I think about the changes and challenges encountered here in Minot, I am reminded of Jesus multiplying the fishes and loaves. Upon hearing Jesus' request that the disciples feed the thousands of people who were present to listen to Jesus' teachings, the disciples were, at first, convinced by the ethic of scarcity. There were way too many people and too little resources to do what Jesus had asked them to do. But upon bringing what little they had to Jesus, something incredible happened all were fed.
In my short time in Minot, I have seen incredible things happen from watching folks who confidently offer "what they have" in the face of a global culture of scarcity. Multiple times over the year I have heard stories of people opening up their doors to friends who lost their homes in the flood. They offered their homes, hearts, hands and their resources to provide for a neighbor in need. I have witnessed people giving of their time and resources to help start the Minot Men's Winter Refuge this past winter. These were people who were committed to the idea that no one should have to freeze in Minot. I have seen servants across Minot who participate in the community lunch program offering free lunch and fellowship every day of the week in locations across the city. I have toured the Lord's Cupboard, spoken with some of their volunteers, and heard stories of the lives changed by its presence in Minot.
These examples only scratch the surface of God's work being done here in Minot but it tells me that the city of Minot is full of dedicated people who are committed to doing what they can in order to care, feed and support their neighbors. It tells me that Minot is full of people who are answering the call of discipleship to bind up the broken, feed those who are hungry, love their neighbor and proclaim the good news.
In a city growing as Minot is, it may feel at times like we are always trying to catch up, and we may feel worn out in a never-ending cycle of asking, "What else can we do?" The challenges can, at times, seem too great. However, it is clear to me that we have much to be thankful for in this city. I give thanks for the servants of this community who do not live their lives guided by an ethic of scarcity. I give thanks for the Spirit at work within this community which reminds us that the well-being of our neighbor is of extreme importance to our life in faith. I give thanks for the disciples in this community who are asking, "What can God do through us?" I am thankful to call Minot home.