Tuesday, February 23, 2010

More Than Gold

There's something about being away from home, being on an adventure, that opens people up to ideas and encounters.  And what bigger adventure for people just now than the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver!  Realizing that folks would be visiting their city from all over the world, the Christian community of Greater Vancouver/Fraser Valley has come together to "collaborate for the common good, to create spaces to extend the radical hospitality of Christ."

More Than Gold is designed to touch the lives of people on many levels during this time of festivity and competition in the Greater Vancouver area.  Through prayer teams, the venues have been prayed over.  Volunteers have been trained to be available -- to ride the trams and buses, to serve coffee, to engage others in conversation, with the purpose of showing kindness in the name of Jesus.  Through their emphasis on the arts, there are hundreds of events scheduled around the area that feature musicians, dancers, actors and visual artists.  MTG has a homestay program for visitors. With Sustainability a guiding value of the 2010 Olympics, More than Gold has chosen three Sustainability initiatives to address as they partner with groups in the area dealing with sex trafficking, homelessness, and creation care.

All of these avenues provide opportunities for believers in Christ to reach out to others in His name.  After studying their website (http://www.morethangold.ca/) and hearing their Director of Operations, Bob Kraemer, on the radio, I am impressed with this massive outreach.  There is the stereotype of button-holing people to get them to come to Jesus, but this does not apply to the efforts of More Than Gold. Instead it is made up of Christian believers across denominational lines whose desire is to be available to those hungering for more in life.  

Let's face it.  Even a gold medal cannot fulfill the deepest need of a person's life, and many who strive for excellence in their sport or other passions will be let down to realize that they still have a hole somewhere inside.  Men and women who know and love Jesus and are trained to offer His love through hospitality are available to serve those who have come to Vancouver for this historic event. Might God bless their efforts and answer their prayers as they freely share His love.

“We ought to show hospitality to people so that we may work together 
for the truth.”  3 John 1:8

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