Firstfruits began with an idea: How could women’s needs to gather with other women, experience God’s love and go forth more centered on their own giftedness and purpose be met? Then the Holy Spirit stepped in and something powerful happened!
In the beginning … Firstfruits began as a vision for a women’s ministry whose purpose was to gather women to experience God’s love. And as a result, be transformed!

As word spread about this unique opportunity, other parishes became interested in hosting a Firstfruits gathering. It became apparent to the founders of Firstfruits that this “gathering” needed to be moveable. We became known as a moveable feast of spiritual opportunities for women.

Seagulls in the Parking Lot

Every time I pull into the parking lot at my local Target store, I am amazed at the number of seagulls flying around.

It strikes me as so odd that such beautiful birds, normally associated with pristine beaches of Florida or “The Shore” (as my east coast friends have taught me to say) would be content spending their lives in the parking lot of a Target store in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

Instead of being fed crusts of half-eaten peanut butter and jelly sandwiches from the vacationing kids in Ft. Meyers, they are scrounging for stale french fries from the nearby McDonald’s.

Instead of soaring over the vastness of the Atlantic Ocean or Gulf of Mexico they are soaring over the nearby Office Max and Pick N Save!

What are they thinking? Do they know what they’re missing? How sad it makes me feel.

Hmm…

Isn’t that probably what God says when we choose not to live the abundant life he wants to provide for us?

A life rich in blessing, where there is nothing we shall want. Green pastures. Safe waters. Goodness and love all the days of our lives. A dwelling with him for years to come.

All that is set before us, and yet we leave it unclaimed and live a parking lot existence.

Stale french fries or God’s abundant life?

Don’t be a bird brain!

Scripture Verses:

Psalm 23
The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I lack.
In green pastures you let me graze; to safe waters you lead me; you restore my strength.
You guide me along the right path for the sake of your name.
Even when I walk through a dark valley, I fear no harm for you are at my side;
your rod and staff give me courage.

You set a table before me as my enemies watch;
You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.
Only goodness and love will pursue me all the days of my life;
I will dwell in the house of the Lord for years to come.

Sirach 15:14
When God, in the beginning, created man, he made him subject to his own free choice.

Discussion Questions:

  1. If God provides all that we need, why do we seem to never be satisfied?
  2. Reflect on our gift of freewill. Do you believe it is a good thing? How does it prevent us from living the life promised to us by God?
  3. Do you believe that the life God promises to provide is the best life you could have?
  4. What might God ask you to let go of in your life right now in order to have that best life?
  5. Do you look to Jesus as your shepherd? Do you recognize his voice?

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Joan Carey, Firstfruits executive director, is an author and speaker with a passion for helping women grow in their relationships with God. Her Ponder This book contains a series of modern day parables sure to get you thinking about and seeing our extraordinary God in our ordinary experiences. Joan invites you to use resources on this website for daily reflection in your journey to grow in God's loving care for you.
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