Share the good newsSeptember 2023GP0|#c82282c9-ac80-45f6-8913-587c567bdd34;L0|#0c82282c9-ac80-45f6-8913-587c567bdd34|Extending Beyond;GTSet|#bb9274b4-45fe-43f1-8b69-3df0b933cdb0;GPP|#a82c2124-212e-4f7a-b626-9a0c5a3534c2;GPP|#96e4d92c-656e-45f6-9cd5-ab8aed108e3c Beyond/908/Share the good newsShare the good newsExtending BeyondBy Marisa Smucker, Interim Executive Director



<p>​As I reflect on our mission and vision statement and read the following story about Carolyn and Enos Tice on their Service Opportunities with Our Partners (SOOP) journey, I am inspired and encouraged. The Tice couple is among many who engage in God's work in the world and "illustrate what shalom looks like," in Enos Tice's words.   </p><p>We, at Mission Network, are so glad that the Tices have chosen to use their time, gifts and funds to help others in communities throughout the United States. Their commitment to caring for others, along with those with whom they are partnering, is an example of being fully engaged in God's mission.  </p><p>In the <em>SOOP Orientation Handbook and Reflection Guide,</em> Del Hershberger, former director of Christian Service at Mission Network, was quoted, saying, "This is the foundation in the is whole enterprise, joining in God's work in the world — reconciling and healing the world so that all of God's creation experiences shalom and that the kingdom of God increasingly becomes a reality for the world" (page 4).  </p><p>When we put God first and are guided by the Holy Spirit, we see the world and others in a new way. First, we become right with God and can see, through God's eyes, what could be —­ the reconciliation, healing and renewal that the world needs. Then, through Jesus, we learn what it means to commit to and carry out God's will, and we are invited in to participate. Finally, by the Holy Spirit, we are empowered and strengthened, as we join this work of reconciliation and healing.   </p><p>The triune God has chosen us, and all of creation, to be co-laborers in this work. This participation happens through volunteer work, prayer, giving financially and many other creative ways. Any amount of time dedicated to supporting SOOP is appreciated, whether it be a few minutes, hours, days, weeks or years.  </p><p>My prayer is that we all may be encouraged to seek God's will, allowing ourselves to be filled with the Holy Spirit and sent out to share God's love and peace with all we meet. There are no greater commandments than to love God and to love our neighbor(s) as ourselves. God's love is abundant and overflowing!  <br><br><strong>Marisa Smucker</strong><br>Interim Executive Director</p><p><br></p>




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