Ever since I took on the role as stewardship chair, I have been meeting with different groups in the church and they have all given me the same response, that there is something bubbling under the surface at KUMC. I liken it to calm river that has a roaring current flowing just under the surface. The Holy Spirit is moving in our church and we can sit on the shore and watch the calm river meander by, or we can jump in and swim with the current and be a vital part of God’s plan and intentions here in Kingwood.
My desire from the moment I took on the role was not to deliver you a phenomenal stewardship campaign. Actually, I want the opposite. I want to completely change the financial culture of the church when it comes to giving and be able to eliminate the need for these campaigns. This church is extremely generous. We are giving constantly. We give our time, resource, prayers, gifts, and we give our money. We do this because when we believe something is right and good, we throw our support behind it, and I believe we all believe the Church is good, because it is from God, and God is only good.
But what holds us back? I think so many hold back from fully supporting the church financially. But why? Maybe we don’t like one thing that someone did years ago. Or maybe we love the church but believe it’s not in our budget. “We’ll start giving when our finances are in order”, or “We have a little left over so let’s give to a worthy mission”. But why do so many hold back from giving to the church as a whole?
The budget isn’t glamorous. Paying for the church’s electric bill doesn’t seem like discipleship, so we’d rather give directly to a mission close to our hearts. And I’m not saying to not do that, but how many people are seeking and finding God on any given weeknight within these walls?
Mission and ministry are not all the highs of massive food packings and hundreds of kids singing VBS songs. It is also the small group dealing with grief on a Tuesday night, or the group dealing with addiction. Or the class meetings on Wednesday nights so that they can seek God with other adults while their kids are being loved on in the nursery.
We have come to depend on the highs of serving in elaborate and highly emotional ways and we forget about the small and individually impactful ways the church serves others on a daily basis. We forget that the church first started because a small group of people just wanted to teach others about Jesus.
What would the church look like if we poured back into it the same way God pours into our lives?
We have been given the means and opportunity to serve and we are called to support the church and equip its disciples to go and make more disciples.
So, my goal with stewardship is not to make you feel guilty and get you to give with a clenched fist. I have a vision of moving the entire culture of the church to one of joyful obedience. I want everyone in the church to know the feeling that I have found when I give willingly to God’s church. That there is actual freedom in giving of our first fruits and not our leftovers. I think this is something we can all work on, even the tither, to not only give joy to others, but to learn to give joyfully.