Beginning October 25, our church will hear about God’s generosity and our response as we explore the stewardship study, first: putting GOD first in living and giving, developed by author and pastor Mike Slaughter of Ginghamsburg United Methodist Church in Tipp City, OH. There will be opportunities in worship, in small groups, in youth and children’s classes, and in devotions that can be used at church or at home.
We are made in God’s image and are meant to be creators of life and hope, not the consumers of our culture’s shiny gods. We have the ability to change the world and create a legacy that will live forever in the lives of generations to follow. That legacy starts when each of us takes the hard steps of financial discipline and fulfilling the call to generosity that God has placed in all of us.
The goal of this stewardship study is not to make you feel guilty, nor is it to say that you have to be exactly like this or that person. The goal is for all of us to ask questions of ourselves and be open to the possibility that God will lead us in new directions in our lives. Furthermore, the goal is to consider what it means to truly put God first in all areas of our life.
During the four-week program, we’ll find ourselves challenged in a number of different ways. We’ll be asked to look for the idols in our own lives. We’ll look closely at the influence money, work, and debt have in our own lives. We will consider what it means for us to be faithful, to save, and to give.
Finally, we’ll be challenged to give with our hearts, not out of obligation or a sense of duty and not just when we think the recipient deserves our gift. Instead, we’ll be challenged to give the way God gives—freely, fully, with no favorites or expectations of repayment.
It is our prayer that, at the end of these four weeks, we will have begun to grow into the individuals and the church that God knows we can be. Please join us in first: putting GOD first in living and giving.