Pastor’s Note – November 21, 2019

Schweitzer UMCPastor's Note


This week in worship, we’ll wrap up our series called Enough. We’ve been exploring the connection between contentment and generosity. Jesus says it’s more blessed to give than to receive. Somehow, in a paradoxical kind of way, we find we have enough not when we get more but when we give more.

This week in worship, we’ll also be doing something significant: we’ll be receiving commitment cards (also known as pledge cards).

I have two things I want you to know about commitment cards.

First, I want you to know this is not about the church budget. Yes, we are working on the church budget, but commitment cards are not the tool we use for building the budget. When we forecast revenue, we look primarily at historical trends and attendance patterns. I can’t say this clearly enough: I am not asking you to fill out a card because of the church’s budget. I put that last sentence in bold to be really, really clear about that point.

So, if it’s not about the budget, why do commitment cards? That’s the second thing I want to share with you.

Second, the simple reason I’m asking you to fill out a commitment card is because you need to. And so do I.

The easiest thing in the world is to skim. I’m sure you know what this feels like. Sometimes instead of going deep in life we just skim along the surface. This happens in our relationship with God very easily. Skimming is one reason why you’ll hear me say on a regular basis that spiritual growth doesn’t happen on accident. You don’t accidentally become close to God. You grow close to God. He’s already done all the work for us, but if we’re not careful we just skim through a relationship with him.

What I’ve found in my life, and I bet this is also true for you too, is that I need practices to draw me closer to God. This is why I read the Bible on a daily basis, and I set aside time to pray and be silent. In the same way, this is why I need to fill out a commitment card. Financial generosity is a spiritual discipline just like Bible reading is. Commitment cards give us the opportunities to think through what God is calling us to do in the very important realm of our life of our finances.

As you fill out your commitment card, here’s the question you need to be asking in prayer: Lord, what do you want me to do?
Have courage and be faithful to what God leads you to do.

We’ll be collecting commitment cards on Sunday, so bring yours with you. If you forget, we’ll have extras on hand.

I can’t wait to see you on Sunday!