Almost 400 miles separated us this afternoon as Conference Minister Rich Pleva, Associate Conference Minister Brigit Stevens, and I joined one another for our weekly web-based check-in time. We spent nearly an hour together, listening and talking our way through topics that were sadder and more challenging than usual.
At the end of the hour, I closed my laptop with a sigh of thanksgiving. No, no, not because another staff meeting was over! But for the God-gifts I found in that shared hour; for Rich and for Brigit and for the Holy Spirit. When the three of us are prayerfully puzzling, there are more than three portions of wisdom on the table. When the three of us are prayerfully groaning, there are more than three portions of strength and support at the table. When the Spirit stirs among us with the balm of playfulness, the laughter multiplies by a number greater than three.
I am excited about the opportunity to puzzle, groan, laugh, and collaborate with an even wider circle of partners if our vision of tri-Conference staff sharing is voted into reality. Together with one shared Executive Conference Minister, four Associate Conference Ministers buy benicar online (two in Iowa, one in Nebraska, and one in South Dakota) will be connecting to offer wisdom, strength, support, and – no doubt – doses of healing humor for one another’s ministries in our three Conferences. Imagine the multiplications! Imagine the insight, experience, faith and courage multiplied by a number greater than five.
One of the great talents Rich Pleva has brought to the Iowa Conference is the gift of gathering staffs whose members contribute fairly few overlapping gifts to the whole. We each bring widely different experiences, skill sets, and expressions of bold Jesus following. For these differences, our ministries are richer. Imagine the collaborations when five persons with few overlapping gifts can support one another’s ministries across three Conferences!
I look forward to ongoing opportunities for wondering and learning and listening with you as conversations continue around the Iowa Conference about the vision of tri-Conference staff sharing. I hope toward the opportunity to bring my little dish of gifts to a potluck with a longer table, joining a larger staff team in cheering on the congregations and pastors of our three Conferences.
Thanking God for gifts that multiply,
Jonna Jensen, Associate Conference Minister