Friday Followings: Rejoice in the Lord Always

Hello Gloria Dei,
 
Jesus tells many parables about landowners who, upon leaving on a long trip, leave their land in the hands of others to take care of. Of course, Jesus is making the point that God has done the same with us. Certainly God is always with us. However, God does give us the task of being stewards of all the gifts that he has given us to manage.
 
Every week we confess our faith in God, often reciting the Apostles’ Creed, which begins “I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth.”
 
The biblical worldview means that God is not just the creator of heaven and earth, but also the owner of heaven and earth. Distinguished bible scholar Dr. Harry Wendt suggests that when we say the first article of the Creed, we ought to add the word “owner”. “I believe in God…. The creator and owner of heaven and earth.”
 
What implications does it have for your life, as a believer and follower of Jesus, if God owns everything, including your very life? What if you and I are simply caretakers, or stewards, of the gifts that God bestows upon us? What if the talents we possess, the resources and money that we say belong to us, even our family, in reality, all belong to God?
 
For me, that truth helps to set me free. This is God’s world. He’s got it. My life belongs to God. He’s got it. My possessions…they aren’t really mine at all. It all belongs to God. And God’s got it. When I truly let that reality sink in and when I live in such a manner, I really do feel free to live with a joy in my heart. God’s got this. And I can live as God calls me to, keeping a love for God and a concern for others in my heart.
 
Our Stewardship theme for this year is Rejoice in the Lord Always. God, the creator and owner of all, has given us life, placed us into this time and space, loves us with an everlasting love, and calls us to use our life for his purposes. Taking care of what God has entrusted to us, how can we not rejoice always?
 
I want to say thank you to all of you. The way in which you use the time, talent, and money that God has entrusted you is evident at Gloria Dei. You are generous in your giving. God calls us to no less.
 
This past Sunday night a good crowd from Gloria Dei gathered at Willow Run. We heard from youth and adults of how Christ is impacting lives for the sake of the gospel. There is no other organization on earth with the mandate to proclaim God’s saving work in Jesus Christ. Your support is needed.
 
This weekend within worship, we will bring our financial pledges for 2020 to the altar as an act of worship. Our offerings support all of the ministry being done, as well as keeping up on our building and mortgage costs. I encourage you to pray about your level of giving to God’s work, and to increase it if possible, as God continues to impact thousands of people for Jesus Christ through this ministry. I encourage all of us to give generously, as the Good News of God’s love for us is indeed the one true and lasting hope for all the world. Again, our giving and support is needed. It is part of our calling as Christians. God has placed us in this time and place to be faithful stewards for God. Rejoice!
 
See You in Worship,
 
Pastor Tim