Wesley Word – October 12, 2022
To go along with service on: Sunday, October 16, 2022
2 Corinthians 9:6-15
We are continuing our series based on our membership vows called Promises. When we become members of a local church in the United Methodist Church we promise that we will faithfully participate in the ministries of the church by our prayers, our presence, our gifts, our service, and our witness. Today, we look at the promise of gifts.
In other words, this week is the money sermon, so you’ve been warned! This is also often known as the “Sermon on the Amount.”
However, I think there is something far more important than the amount of money we give. After all, someone with a lot of money can give a lot of money and not be as generous as a person who can only give a little. Developing the spirit of generosity is what is really important and generosity is a matter of the heart, not the checkbook.
So, how do we become more generous? We get generosity, like any other spiritual good, by practicing spiritual discipline, in this case, disciplined giving.
First, generous giving is intentional. Notice 2 Corinthians 9:6 says that each of us should give what we have made up our minds to give. We decide how much to give. Our giving should be proportional to what we have, (1 Corinthians 16:2) those who have more, should give more. Tithing, giving 10%, is a great way to do this.
Second, our giving should be regular. In 1 Corinthians 16:2, Paul says we should give every week. Regular giving, every week or every month, is what makes the most difference in the church budget.
Third, giving should be willing and cheerful. Our giving has to be free and willing and not under compulsion. To be blessed, our giving has to be cheerful; to be cheerful it has to be free.
Many of you have received pledge cards, and we will also have some at church. Many of you pledge every year and will be renewing your pledge. We appreciate you all. Some of you have not pledged previously. Here is what we are asking you to do: Decide how much you can give, it does not matter how much, and put that on your pledge card. You do not even have to put your name on it if you don’t want to. Also, please note that each pledge card offers an opportunity on the back to renew our commitment to support the ministries of the church by our prayers, our presence, our gifts, our service, and our witness. So, there is no excuse for anyone not to complete a pledge card. We will be collecting pledge cards during services on November 6th.
Question for Reflection/Discussion:
- How is God making me into a more generous person?
New Testament in a Year: https://wesleyonline.org/biblereading/
- October 12 1 Thessalonians 5:4-28
- October 13 2 Thessalonians 1:1-12
- October 14 2 Thessalonians 2:1-17
- October 15 2 Thessalonians 3:1-18
- October 16 1 Timothy 1:1-20
- October 17 1 Timothy 2:1-15
- October 18 1 Timothy 3:1-16
- October 19 1 Timothy 4:1-16
Expressing Love: Family/Mission Activity
Money, money, money…….I feel as though every decision in my life revolves around money, where to spend it, who to give it to, watching the grocery bill go higher and higher for each trip. We learn at a young age what money is and what to do with it. Children in school learn how to count money, save money and the right way to spend money. SO why is it so hard for people to give money to their church?
All of this got me thinking about how I feel about tithing. On occasion I have lapsed into thinking that now that I have done that I can just do with everything else exactly as I please. I have also known a number of persons who wanted to trade tithing for time assuming that God had some sort of point system and they would get enough from one area to substitute for another.
I found myself remembering Matt 23:23 where Jesus said to paraphrase, “you tithe…but…” Jesus was not saying that giving the tithe was bad, not at all. He was saying that only giving the tithe and not loving God or loving our neighbor was to totally miss the point. It was not our money that Jesus was after, but a relationship, a personal relationship with Jesus, therefore with God. He was saying that God wants us to be in a loving relationship with him more than anything else. Tithing is and should be one part of that expression of love. I should not want to tithe so I will get something in return. I should want to at least tithe because of the simple fact that I love God and am so grateful for all He has done for me.
This week I challenge you to count out the change you have laying around the house (if you are like me, it will be all over and not in the change jar) to make $1.00. As you count out each piece of change, speak out loud a blessing for Jesus, your family, your church, your community and so on. If you are counting out pennies, you will have so many blessings to count!
“And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Jesus Christ” – Philippians 4:19
- WOW (Wesley on Wednesdays) 6:00 pm. Refreshments, devotions, adult classes, and programming for youth and children.
- First Presbyterian Church is hosting a Trunk-or-Treat on Oct 30th from noon to 1pm. Grab some candy, a lawn chair and pop your trunk to help our churches neighborhood celebrate Halloween and our gracious neighbors First Presbyterian. If interested, please call Kayla at 563-263-2696 to make sure a spot is available to you. Trunk-or-Treat will take place in the parking lot at the corner of 4th street and Sycamore.
- Annual Charge Conference—Sunday, November 6, 3:00 pm in Fellowship Hall.