How to avoid Stewardship Sermons

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It happened last week. The annual stewardship sermon.

I could use this post as my chance to chastise people for the way they look at and follow through with giving their tithe. But, I won’t do it. I’m no saint, in fact, I’m a sinner – just like you. But, I will share a few things.

I am shocked at the low number of people who willingly put down in writing their goal for the coming year in terms of giving. As a business person, I have a plan and set goals each year for my production. How is it not the same with your financial plan for giving to your church?

Why is it so hard to talk about money? I welcome an honest congregation who just spells it out and asks for help. It amazes me at how different faiths and different people react to this concept of giving.

We can love the Lord with all our hearts, all our souls and all our minds but if you are going to do this…you have to give.

How do you avoid stewardship sermons? You don’t go to church. But then you will be the worse for that decision.

It’s as simple as that.

You can have it all!

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Daily I am bombarded with emails that assure me that if I only do a certain number of steps, I can live a life of perfection.

Typically, with the one easy and affordable payment, all of my dreams will come true. Money back guaranteed.

I will work only at a job I love, have perfect relationships, effectively get my day organized so that everything is done quickly and efficiently, love and be loved…and more.

Seriously?

These are empty promises my friends. Life can not be perfect in seven easy steps. It doesn’t work that way although it doesn’t mean you can’t try. But, keep your expectations realistic.

For the manual that will clarify your dreams and goals, you only have to look at the Bible. It clearly shows a plan of action to ensure a life well lived. There are no promises for 100% daily perfection but it does promise perfect love from a Father who will never abandon you.

There is peace of mind in that simple and true fact…and I just shared it with you at no cost.

I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:14

 

 

Regrets? I have a few

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I’m somewhat surprised when I hear someone say they have no regrets. I find that hard to believe.

There is only one person that I know who is perfect and we just celebrated His resurrection yesterday. But for the rest of us…we could use some work.

As for me, I have a lot of regrets. Too many to mention. I have been known to sit through Sunday service, say all my prayers of forgiveness with a genuine and contrite heart, march up for communion and then on the way back to my pew my mind wanders to something that I instantly regret. I can go south in a hot minute.

I once thought if I was the sort of person that believed in tattoos, I would put a permanent bodily marking of Romans 3:23 in a place where the sun doesn’t shine. That verse is courtesy of my sweet Baptist upbringing. Romans 3:23 rings true for my life. Some days I just fall a little short of the glory of God. Maybe a lot.

I have learned to live with regret but I try to learn from my mistakes as well. Even more important, I believe in a God that forgives my sins. In fact, it is my desire to try to please Him by decreasing my personal number of regrets earned in a single day.

Regrets? I have a few. But I also have a loving Savior who reminds me daily that He holds my hand as we walk through the highs and lows of this life together. Loving Jesus and choosing to follow Him is the one thing I will never regret.

How great is that?

When life gives you lemons

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…make lemonade

I know this sounds like a really sketchy concept for my Easter Sunday blog. But stick with me for a minute.

This is the ultimate bad day turns out great day in history. If we are to believe that Jesus really did rise from the dead on the third day after his crucifixion, then it is absolutely life changing. This is not fiction, it’s not a fable, it’s not just a great story. In fact, if you believe, then you can never go back to normal.

With Jesus – normal is not an option.

If you believe, then you have to believe without reservation or restrictions. It’s time to redirect your course. You can’t just fit Jesus into your life when convenient. Jesus IS your life now. You are a changed person.

Your life may have been lemons before you found Jesus but once you let him into your heart…it’s time to make lemonade. This story, this life of Christ is too big for one day. It’s for all eternity.

Are you all in?