2018 Miracle Offering Called: One Word, Many Ways
"Imagine over 1000 persons being lifted in prayer… Imagine how the Holy Spirit will flood their lives… Imagine how God will be honored." -Bishop Bruce Ough
In John 15:16, Jesus says, “I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last…” One of the ways in which we, as United Methodists from across North and South Dakota, seek to do that is through the Miracle Offering collected as a part of our annual conference session.
Since 2012 Dakotas United Methodists have opened their hearts and generously given more than $550,000 to the Miracle Offering.”
The theme of the 2018 Annual Conference session—taking place June 7-9 in Sioux Falls, SD—is “Discover Joy: Live Deeply.” We invite you to discover the joy of generosity and faithfulness but participating in our Called: One Word, Many Ways Miracle Offering in two ways.
First, we invite you and the members of your congregation to live deeply by making a commitment to pray, bless and partner with us in helping others hear and respond to God’s call to their next step of faith and spiritual leadership. This commitment includes bringing their names to the 2018 Annual Conference to lay on the alter that we might ALL surround them in prayer for God’s Spirit to move and break through.
Second, we invite you to experience joyful giving through a financial gift to the Culture of Call Grant fund. These grants will serve as seed money for churches, groups and organizations to create opportunities for faithful discernment and courageous response.
Our goal is to lift up 1,000 names from our churches and communities and raise $100,000 to support churches, groups and organizations in creating opportunities to inspire and equip individuals to hear and respond to God’s calling!
How to Begin Creating a Culture of Call in your Congregation
1. Pray! Make this a part of your regular prayer rhythm and focus. During the Congregational Prayer, ask God to nudge people to that next step of spiritual leadership. Pray that eyes and hearts would be open to the Spirit moving. Pray that people would name those gifts they see in one another.
2. Plan a CALLED Sunday. Use passages such as 1 Samuel 3:1-10 or Exodus 3:1-12, songs like “Here I Am, Lord” or “Oceans”, and acts of worship such as altar calls or baptismal renewal to remind people that God is still calling us. Check out this link for more resources.
3. Share scriptures and questions for reflection/discussion with church members, committees and small groups to give people language and opportunities to talk about hearing and responding to God’s call as well as helping other to do the same. Check out this link for examples.
4. Integrate the Culture of Call into your Children’s and Youth Ministry by asking who they see among their peers that might be called to be a pastor or spiritual leader. Curriculum samples can be found at this link for children's ministry and at this link for youth ministry can also help facilitate those conversations. Camps and retreats are other great times for them to step outside their routine, so they can hear God’s voice.
5. Invite people to share their “God stories” of hearing and responding to a “nudge” from the Spirit to step out in faith. Show one of these inspiring video resources during worship or as a conversation starter in a small group setting or meeting to give people an example.
6. As name(s) are lifted up in your midst, bring them to Annual Conference 2018 as part of our CALLED: One Word, Many Ways Miracle Offering so we can provide prayers and support in helping churches and individuals embrace this Culture of Call across the Dakotas!