By Dave Eitland with the Stewardship Ministry Team
What are you thankful for?
This definition of stewardship comes from the book called Bounty: Ten Ways to Increase Giving at Your Church by Kristine Miller and Scott McKenzie. The Stewardship Ministry Team and the Vestry have been reading the book this year as a guide to our thinking of the annual stewardship ministry emphasis and education.
This fall we are going to ask you to pray, think, and give to the ministry of Grace in the context of gratitude. Gratitude in giving, to me, is based in an “attitude of gratitude” as an act of faith that builds my discipleship and equally acknowledges that God has given everything to me.
We pray each Sunday as our offerings are received, we proclaim
“All things come from you, O Lord. And from thine own we give thee. Amen.”
God, creator of the universe, provides to us all good things to maintain our lives. God has placed us in this time in history and endows us with housing, food, education, earth, a culture, government, willing givers, infrastructure, air, water, family, talent, faith, the Church, the Gospel and salvation. There is nothing I do or say that has given me the means to live my life; everything comes from God.
Our giving grows out of this recognition in the form of praise and thanksgiving for what God has given us, our lives, our time, and our possessions … signs of God’s gracious love.
One of the first things you will hear about is our celebration of World Gratitude Day on Sunday, September 21. This day was created by the United Nations for individuals to focus on the great things in life and what they have been given. During this weekend at Grace, we will ask you to complete a small list of the things you are grateful for, write them down, and present them as an offering to the Lord. The Stewardship Ministry Team will also ask your permission to use your insights as we educate the parish on gratitude throughout the fall.
Oh, let us give thanks to the Lord for God is good, and God’s mercy endures forever