Eating and serving together1
He wrote them to observe the days as days of feasting and joy and giving presents of food to one another and gifts to the poor.
- from Esther 9:22
Part of the point of the Purim holiday was to do all this together. Purim can’t be celebrated alone. And neither can Chatham Serves.
When celebrating Purim, the whole community stops what they’re doing and takes a break from their ordinary, day-to-day way of doing life. And they participate in activities that facilitate communal, corporate interaction. They give presents of food to one another and enjoy a feast. They give gifts to the poor and do that together.
At our Chatham Serves celebration, we also look for ways to help you connect with each other.
We gather for a meal together. Why do we do this? We know you can make your own breakfast. We know you might end up driving right past your worksite on your way to breakfast. We know many of you will have already had breakfast and that this is really Second Breakfast for you. Having a meal together isn’t efficient. But it’s important.
By eating together, we’re reminded that God has been good to us … to us … not just to me and not just to you. When we eat delicious food together, we remember that God has provided for us and is constantly making space for us to be loved and accepted by his people who voluntarily want to spend time with us.
And then, on that foundation, we can move out to serve … together. We don’t send anyone to a worksite alone. We always move out in community. And this community provides an opportunity. You might get to talk to someone you don’t see every week. You might be able to see a side of someone you’d never get to see in our normal Sunday worship. You might discover something encouraging God is doing in another part of our community, something that would give you faith and hope and courage.
When you show up for Chatham Serves, look for opportunities to connect with one person you don’t know very well or see very often. Take advantage of the different way of interacting with each other. Make the most of this opportunity.