• You can also download a teacher’s guide to “Ish” at
Just as Ramon discovered that his pictures didn’t have to
be perfect—they could be ish—we don’t have to give everything away, or deny ourselves things that give us pleasure.
It’s okay to be generous-ish and kind-ish. And the neat thing
is, if we start with one small thing, it will lead us to add
another, and another, and another. And pretty soon, all those
ishes add up. Pretty soon we discover:
• Being kind-ish can make us more kind.
• Being generous-ish can make us more generous.
STORY-TIME ACTIVITIES (60+ mins)
• Make an “Ish” poster. Fill your poster with pictures of
the big things in the world; things you would change, or
things that bug you. After you are done, think about one
tiny thing you can do to make a difference for each of these
things. Remember—small things count—just like God’s
stories of a mustard seed and yeast for baking bread.
• Make an “Ish” self portrait. You can also partner up and do a
portrait of your partner and they can make one of you. Label
them “ish-fully.” For example: “Jack-ish,” or “Ava-ish.” You
could also make a self-portrait of yourself as a generous-ish
person, and label it with the many ways you are generous
with your time, your talents, and your treasures.
• Pray in colour. Use the workshop outline and the templates
found on the Praying in Colour website to create a picture of
how you can be generous, the people you want to be generous
with, the places where you think generosity is needed, or a
combination of these.
• Ask a few people from the congregation to come and talk
about the ways they give of their time, their talent, and
• Create giving buddies. Email, write letters to each other, or
check in at church with your giving buddy about the ways
you were generous over the last week.
• Create “save, spend, and give” jars or tins for allowance or
money earned. Google Pinterest for ideas on how to decorate these containers.
• Ghandi once said: “A thousand candles can be lighted
from the flame of one candle, and the life of the candle
will not be shortened. Happiness can be spread without
diminishing that of yourself.” Use your “Ish” self-portraits,
or some other drawing, and follow the instructions here for
transferring your drawing onto a candle.
Be sure to pray and give thanks for the fun, the learning, and
each other. Ask God to help you be generous-ish. Chose one
of the following hymns to wrap-up the workshop:
• More Voices #30, “It’s a Song of Praise to the Maker.”
• More Voices #191, “What Can I do.”
The Rev. Kerrie Perry is Toronto Conference Minister for
Community and Connection and Regional Youth Ministry.
SOMETIMES I WRITE WORKSHOPS WHEN I AM DRIVING,
OR WALKING, OR WASHING DISHES. My brain needs to
be distracted in order to be creative. When we stop focusing
on something and enter into a repetitive task, it opens our
brains to new possibilities.
Walking toward the subway through Yorkdale Mall in Toronto
recently, I spotted a huge sign that read: “This is a sentence in
which each letter is slightly smaller than the previous one until
the letters are so small that you have to come super close in
order to be able to read these final words.”
It was different enough to capture my interest; to make
me stop and read it. And when I did, I was inspired. For me,
this image works in the opposite direction of generosity. Small
acts of generosity make us more generous. The more you
practice little bits of generosity, the more generous you will
feel and the bigger the impact your joyful generosity
will have—for you, for others, for the world. —Kerrie Perry
Little to big: