At Our Best
We’re at our best when we’re giving.
A good friend and mentor of mine shared this bit of wisdom with me a while back and it’s stuck with me. We’re at our best because when we give,
we put others’ needs before our own
we remind ourselves that all things belong to God
we realize how much we truly have
we bear the image of God
This last one is important. We usually think of God as “creator,” but in the Biblical imagination God doesn’t just create the world and all that is in it, God creates the world and then gives it to us. God creates, but then God gives, and I believe it’s in our giving that we truly live into our calling.
So in one way, giving is the most natural thing in the world; we are giving creatures made in the image of a giving God. But in another way, good giving takes some effort. It takes some thoughtfulness. We don’t all grow up learning to think of giving this way, so here are some suggestions to help you plan your giving in the coming year.
• If you don’t currently give, make it your goal to start this year. Start with something you can feel good about and allow the Spirit to work from there.
• If you already give occasionally, make it your goal to give regularly. Make it a part of your Sunday worship. Take time to sit down and plan what you’d like to give. Don’t get hung up on tithing 10%—make that a goal to work up to. Start with a percentage you’re comfortable with and do your best to stick to it. You’ll find that giving is like exercise in that it becomes easier and more fulfilling the more you do it.
• If you already give regularly, make it a goal to give more this year than you did the year before. Maybe it’s 1/2%, maybe it’s 1%. Keep exercising your giving muscles!
• If your situation has changed in the past year and you’re unable to give as you have in the past—give what you can, and feel good about it. Giving is an act of community and Scripture is filled with examples of God taking small gifts and doing miraculous things with it.
However you choose to give, I invite do it thoughtfully and prayerfully. Too often we think of giving as a burden instead of the blessing it’s intended to be.
I’m excited to ask you to consider how you will support the mission and ministry of our church because I feel so strongly about all the incredible things God is doing here. In the coming weeks you’ll be hearing more about many of them. But as you consider your giving for the coming year, don’t just give because the church needs it.
Give because you know the ways God has moved in your life and you want to respond to it.
Give because you’ve seen the ways God has moved in the life of this church, and you want to be a part of it.
We’re at our best when we’re giving, but we’re even better when we give together. I hope you’ll join us on the journey.