By Bill McDonald
We will be launching into our annual stewardship campaign on October 12, Kickoff Sunday. But I want you to think of this campaign differently this year. This is not the church needing to receive your money. Oh, it does, there is no doubt about that. None of the ministries of South Elkhorn Christian Church come about without the financial support of its members and friends. What we do is only possible by our giving. But that isn’t the point of the campaign. Not “the church needs to receive.” The point is “the need of the giver to give.”
In our little morality play at the beginning of this article, you felt such gratitude for the magnanimous nature of your neighbor that you yearned to be able to repay her favors in some way. You felt the need to give. Well, substitute God for that neighbor in the story. I look at my life story and I see God’s handprints all over it. Blessings have poured into my life beyond the wildest dreams of my childhood mind. My early years were spent in a constantly changing series of duplexes, boarding houses, and small frame rental houses. I dreamed of the day I would live in a real house of our own.
That dream came true. I dreamed of a life of meaning, a career in which I could feel fulfilled. That happened. My education, my wife, my kids made up a sweet ice cream life-soda to savor and the grandkids are cherries on the top! (Actually, a couple of them are more like nuts, but that fits the analogy too!) When I try to count my blessings, I run out of calculating space in my brain. God is constantly busy piling blessings into my days. So how does that make me feel? It makes me feel a need to give back to God. Check out your life. Don’t you sense that same urging? So that’s our point for Stewardship Campaign 2014: “the need of the giver to give.”
Our campaign offers you the opportunity to give back to the One who has given so much to you, to scratch that incessant itch to give in return for all you have received. The theme this year is “What We Will Be,” taken from 1 John 3:2, “Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we will be has not yet been revealed.” And looking at the glorious past and present of our beloved church, I can hardly wait to see what God has in store for our future. But I think I can guess one thing we will be: grateful recipients of God’s grace and goodness. More, Lord? You are giving us even more? Makes me feel a need to give. How about you?