Reflections on Faith and Community

Dear friends,

In this blog, you will find weekly reflections on life and faith. My hope is that, in some way, they will prove helpful to you in your daily living. May God bless you on the spiritual journey.

Andrew S. Odom
Pastor

10/15/2018 8:57 PM

In It Together

10/15/2018 8:57 PM
10/15/2018 8:57 PM
“I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing.” (John 15:5)
 
Sunday kicked off our annual Stewardship Campaign, and I preached on giving, specifically asking the question, “Why do you give?” It’s a great question. Why do we give? I sometimes ask that question of myself as if I’m asking it for the very first time. It’s healthy to talk about questions like that. But we all know what I’m basically doing. I’m asking you to give to the church. You know it. I know it. We all know it. What’s particularly unique for pastors, though, is that I am not just asking you to give, I’m asking myself as well. What an odd place to be.
 
Perhaps one of the reasons pastors struggle to talk about money, and they do, is precisely because we are both an asker and a giver. We don’t want to push too hard if we know we can’t give much more ourselves, or we don’t want to offend if we are able to give a good deal more but know that some are not in that same place. Being the asker and the giver puts one in a funny place where we have an understanding of both sides, making it tedious at best.

Do you want to know what changes it for me, though? Simply this: we are in it together. That’s it. We are in it together. That one truth reminds me that this is not some church giving competition where the highest bidder gets the prize. It’s not a Ted Talk where I’m simply trying to get my angle out to the masses. This is us: you, and me, and Jesus. We are in it together, and because we are in it together, I can relax and talk to you about money and giving. I can do so believing that, like the vine is to the branches, Jesus is present in the relationship, that our giving together not only glorifies God by allowing the church to see another wonderful hope-filled year of ministry. We’re in it together. How great is that?

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