Many of you have heard me say that I’ve been to all 50 states, and some of them I’d be willing to visit again. I have also been known to offer unsolicited travel tidbits about various states, such as the best Chinese food in the world is served at Pagoda restaurant in North Pole, Alaska (it is found on N. Santa Claus Ln).
Among my travels, one of my favorite cities is Savannah, Georgia. While the shrimp and grits at Paula Deen’s is a must, the primary reason I enjoy Savannah is for all of the history. Below is a picture of the John Wesley monument located in Reynolds Square.
Wesley would later become the founder of Methodism, and while he spent most of his life and career in England, it is because of his time in Savannah that the two are linked in my mind. Among his many commentaries and quotes is the following:
“Do you not know that God entrusted you with that money (all above what buys necessities for your families) to feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, to help the stranger, the widow, the fatherless; and, indeed, as far as it will go, to relieve the wants of all mankind? How can you, how dare you, defraud the Lord, by applying it to any other purpose?”
When reading Wesley you quickly discover that equivocation was not one of his faults. While I believe that stewardship is a joyful response to God’s many gifts, Wesley all but declares that the joy is optional. The obligation is paramount, the need is everywhere, taking action is urgent. The words are intended to make us uncomfortable and spur change. They can also reinforce the thought that the topic of Stewardship is "just another talk about money".
Now I do not want to be misunderstood, and I am not asking people to give less money. Giving to our mission and ministry continues to be the emphasis.
Yet the three T’s of Stewardship are Time, Talent, and Treasure. We can talk about tithing our treasure, but what about giving God 10% (or more!) of our time? 2-1/2 hours a day in prayer, bible study, or worship. Giving our talent – sharing our spiritual gifts – is another way of giving our time. When you share your gifts as part of the Pilgrim ministry, you grow in Christ, and increase the ways we can share Christ with all people.
We have a very talented and dedicated congregation, and still there are needs. If you have time and are willing to serve, there are committees that need you. There are outreach ministries that Ruth Ann needs help with. Pastor needs someone to coordinate greeters and people to become ushers! Make yourself known and see where the Holy Spirit leads you.