“Fairy tales do not give the child his first idea of boogey. What fairy tales give the child is his first clear idea of the possible defeat of boogey. The baby has known the dragon intimately ever since he had an imagination. What the fairy tale provides for him is a St. George to kill the dragon.”― G.K. Chesterton, Tremendous Trifles
Every one of us grew up reading or hearing stories. Even before we could understand the words, our parents would open up a book and tell tales of heroes, monsters, bravery, suspense, and true love.
Stories are an integral part of our lives and perhaps more important than many of us think. The tales our parents tell us give us a small picture of what kind of world we live in: the good, the bad, and the ugly. Most importantly, though, they tell us of what kind of world we can hope for.
This is important because all our lives are stories about ourselves. Every one of us has experienced joy, sorrow, laughter, pain, and much more. While we haven’t battled dragons, many of us have battled depression. While we probably haven’t saved a damsel in distress, many of us have offered a helping hand to someone in need. The stories we read as children teach us about the world around us but so do our own stories.
On Saturday, April 13, Convergence Church welcomed Matthew Korte, Pastor of Care and Community at Missio Dei Church in Cincinnati, Ohio. Matthew shared with us how the congregation of Missio Dei became burdened by the stories of children in their community and around the world who did not have families of their own. Missio Dei Church decided to do something about it. Now more than half of their church has chosen to change the stories of children from stories of loss and loneliness to stories of hope and love, either through direct adoption or through hospitality towards fostered children. They have found children floating around “the system” and have helped them to find a sense of belonging. Matthew shared his vision with our church, and showed us that through praying, providing, and even welcoming these children into our homes, Convergence Church can make an impact as well.
As of this writing, we are one small week from celebrating our Resurrection Sunday service at North Charlotte Park, which coincides with our church’s second anniversary celebration. Many families have come to Convergence Church these past two years with stories just like the above—stories of loneliness, sadness, and pain—but together we have learned that we are all part of an even greater story, His story, that we especially celebrate during the Easter season: a story of sacrifice, of betrayal and death, and ultimately, a story of hope. The crucifixion of Jesus Christ, the moment of ultimate despair, is not the end. On the other end of the darkness of death is a bright and shining light: the resurrection—the hope of eternal life. This is the story of the world, and it is the story that gives us hope.
As we have been impacted by this story, our lives have changed to reflect its truths. Broken marriages have been restored, people have been set free from addiction, and best of all, people have learned to love each other and their communities selflessly and sacrificially. We are taking the opportunity to share this story of hope with those around us who feel as if hope is beyond their reach, both in word and in deed.
This is why we celebrate Easter every year. We remind ourselves and those around us of the story shaping our lives and the hope that lies beyond our darkest moments. If you are interested in sharing your story with us at Convergence Church, or with joining us as we begin to reach out to children through our foster care/adoption ministry, we’d love for you to visit us at 3321 The Plaza.