Jesus once asked to rank the greatest of God's commandments. His answer: You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength...and secondly, Love your neighbor as yourself (see Mark 12:28-34). In a couple of sentences, Jesus sums up the totality of the law and the prophets in a simple, yet comprehensive, picture of what it means to follow God.
The Great Commandment is the central theme of our stewardship season, called the Great Invitation: Discovering the Closeness of God's Kingdom Every Day. During this season we are examining what it means to truly love the Lord with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength...and our neighbor as ourselves. As simple as the message sounds, loving God in this way touches on every aspect of our being; where we direct our thoughts, how we spend our time, and what we do with our money and possessions, even how we pray. Understanding how simple every day decisions affect our ability to fulfill Jesus' teaching can be a springboard to a more enriching spiritual life and a greater awareness of God's plan for our days.
Now, whenever we discuss stewardship, it is easy to become cynical and confuse our calling to e good stewards with the church's need to receive. It is true that St. Andrew relies on your generosity to carry out our ministry, but the real reason we study stewardship is because it is such an essential component to our lives as Christian disciples. When we are generous, we reflect the loving and generous nature of our Creator God. My hope during this season is that we will all come away with a deeper appreciation of the great invitation we have been given to participate in the work of the Lord through the sharing of our resources.
November 6 was Stewardship Commitment Sunday. My prayer is that all of us will grow in generosity, loving god with all our heart, mind, soul, and strength, and our neighbors as ourselves.
I'm excited about the coming weeks, and I invite you to join me for this important season. Together, and with the help of the Spirit, we can grow in such a way that our lives will more truly reflect the great and generous love of Christ.
You can view a snapshot of our financial picture twice a month in the weekly Mini-Messenger and monthly in the Messenger newsletter along with the news of how your giving is working for God's glory. Come see how the fruits of your stewardship are flourishing by visiting the News page on our website.