We have been abundantly blessed by God in many ways, both personally and collectively as a church. With the gifts of life and free will, we have time which we can use in many ways. We have been blessed with a wide variety of skills and abilities. Our family and friends are cherished and priceless treasures. And during his earthly ministry, Jesus often taught about another gift: money (or material wealth).
In times of old, stewards were servants who served as business managers for their masters. Stewards had to wisely manage and maintain their lord’s wealth (e.g., land, buildings, money) and ensure that the lord’s household was always provisioned with food and drink. Each of us are called to be stewards of God’s wealth, both individually and together, as members of God’s household.
How we use our time and money reveals a great deal about who we really are! Both our interests and values can be seen in our bills and receipts. Of course, many of them are associated with the stuff of life, where money is spent on food, clothing, housing, and much more. But, despite our challenges with personal budgets, there are probably very few of us who do not spend money on things we don’t need. We can of course use that money for ourselves or for greater purposes. But only through giving can we mimic our Creator, express thanks to our Savior, and get a into a right relationship with the Holy Spirit.
"The most important one," answered Jesus, "is this: `Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is on.e Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.' The second is this: `Love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no commandment greater than these."
Mark 12:29-31 (NIV)
We are called to put God and others first in our lives. Are we doing that with our time and money? Can we each take a step toward that by increasing our giving for God’s work in this world?
Tax-deductible donations may be made to “First Congregational UCC Church” and submitted through the offering during worship or mailed to the church office (e.g., via check or your bank’s electronic bill-pay program).