Mid-Week Stewardship Thought

Perseverance in Faith

In the book of Acts, we read about the beginning of the Christian church, and throughout the twenty-eight chapters the author provides examples of those who persevered so the Gospel could be spread.  Consider Peter and John, who were called before the powerful Sanhedrin, the highest Jewish council and authority.  The members of the Sanhedrin commanded them not to “… speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus” (Acts 4:18).  “But Peter and John answered them, ‘Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge..  For we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard’ ” (Acts 4:19-20).  Following that bold statement, they met for prayer, asking for even more perseverance:  “And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to Your servants to continue to speak Your word with all boldness” (Acts 4:29).  History tells us that they persevered unto death.

Prayer: Lord, thank You for my faith and keep my faith steadfast. In Jesus’ name I pray.  Amen.

Blessings on your stewardship journey!

Advertisements

Mid-Week Stewardship Thought

Perseverance in Prayer

Jesus told many parables, one of them to His disciples “…to show them that they should always pray and not give up” (Luke 18:1 NIV).  The parable was about a widow who, time after time, pleaded with a judge to give her justice.  The judge, although not moved by pity or a desire to have justice served, finally relented, saying, “Though I neither fear God nor respect men, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming” (Luke 18:4-5)! Then Jesus added, “And will not God give justice to His elect, who cry out to Him day and night?  Will He delay over them?  I tell you, He will give justice to them speedily” (vs. 7-8a).  “Never give up” is the message of this parable.  Our heavenly Father promises that we will receive whatever we ask for in His name (Matthew 7:7).

Prayer: Dear good and gracious Heavenly Father, thank You for Your promise that You will hear and answer our prayers.  Forgive me when I’ve neglected to pray.  Help me to seek time with You in prayer throughout each of my days.  In Jesus’ name I pay.  Amen.

Blessings on your stewardship journey!

Mid-Week Stewardship Thought

Perseverance in Prayer

Jesus told many parables, one of them to His disciples “…to show them that they should always pray and not give up” (Luke 18:1 NIV).  The parable was about a widow who, time after time, pleaded with a judge to give her justice.  The judge, although not moved by pity or a desire to have justice served, finally relented, saying, “Though I neither fear God nor respect men, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will give her justice, so that she will not beat me down by her continual coming” (Luke 18:4-5)! Then Jesus added, “And will not God give justice to His elect, who cry out to Him day and night?  Will He delay over them?  I tell you, He will give justice to them speedily” (vs. 7-8a).  “Never give up” is the message of this parable.  Our heavenly Father promises that we will receive whatever we ask for in His name (Matthew 7:7).

Prayer: Dear good and gracious Heavenly Father, thank You for Your promise that You will hear and answer our prayers.  Forgive me when I’ve neglected to pray.  Help me to seek time with You in prayer throughout each of my days.  In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

Blessings on your stewardship journey!

Mid-Week Stewardship Thought

You Are Mine

At birth, your parents gave you a name and, through that name, an identity.  Wherever you are or go, you will respond to that name.  In a similar way, you gained another identity when you were born as God’s child in Holy Baptism.  God has created and recreated you so that you belong to Him.  Through His body and blood in Holy Communion, He forgives your sins and furthers His claim on you as His own.  You have one identity through your parents, but a much more important one through your Lord.

Because you belong to Him, you have another identity – that of steward.  As God’s steward, you see life as a gift and understand that all you have is on loan to you, and you willingly and responsibly manage what God has entrusted to you.  When you acknowledge His ownership, you understand your identity as a unique individual, as child of God, and as His chosen steward.

Prayer: Father, thank You for my baptism and Your unconditional love.  Amen.

Blessings on your journey as a steward!

Helping in the Face of a Hurricane

Most of us are simply overwhelmed by the visuals we see from Houston TX and the surrounding area these past few days. To hear of rainfall in the trillions of gallons just is beyond my understanding!

One thing is obvious–the need to help our neighbors in Texas is growing by the minute.

I encourage you to help in any way you can–through your own church denomination (just go to their website and search for disaster relief); national agencies like the American Red Cross; or, whatever you find you can do.

Within the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod, the Texas District has their own system set up to handle these all too frequent disasters. I ask, if you are interested and want to help, to check out their latest blog post and click on the Donate Now! button to offer financial assistance.

I have and I pray you will too.

For Those of You Who Didn’t Win the Powerball

One of my relatives texted my wife yesterday and asked a simple favor: would we pray for her Powerball tickets so that the winning one would be among them?

I’m never one to pass up on an opportunity to pray, so this is what I sent:

Lord, help me remain calm when I find out I wasted my money on those tickets. Grant me the grace I need to not be jealous when the winner is announced. Finally, dear Father, give me the common sense not to buy more tickets since I know I have a better chance of being struck by lightning than winning a drawing. Amen.

Never did hear back from her and with the information that the winning ticket was sold outside of Boston I guess my prayer wasn’t quite what was sought.

How about you? What were you praying for?

Mid-Week Stewardship Thought

In Christ, We Are New Creations

Scripture tells us that we cannot be free to be God’s servants or stewards until death to ourselves takes place in each of us.  This death is not a physical death, but a spiritual death.  It is the death of the old nature in us so the new nature or new life in Christ can be raised.   Paul wrote, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Corinthians 5:17).  All things in Christ are created anew.  It is this new life in Christ that people see as we give generously and serve freely.  “For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” (Ephesians 2:10).

Prayer:  Lord, thank You for Your love and strength that transform me into a new person who lives to serve You rather than myself and the ways of the world.  Grant me grace to remain in Your love and to be a giving and generous person.  In Jesus’ precious name I pray.  Amen.

Blessings on your stewardship journey!