We invite you to worship with us every Sunday at 8 AM, 10:45 AM & Spanish service at 10:45 AM. Sunday School is open for all ages at 9:30 AM.
Holy communion is celebrated on the first, third and fifth Sundays of the month.
The Fall is also become known as the Holiday Season. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas all seem to run together with all of the preparations, purchases and promotions that go on at this time of the year. It’s a good time to think about how we treat our stuff, both money and possessions. John Wesley was an Anglican Priest and Oxford professor in the late 1700’s. He is best known as one of the founders of the Methodist Church. He had a good idea of how his money and things should be used.
John Wesley grew up in grinding poverty. His father was a Anglican priest of one of the poorest parishes in England. With nine kids to support, the senior Wesley was always in debt and went to debtor’s prison once. John Wesley had no illusions of wealth when he became a priest like his father. But John was called to a different path than his father. After being ordained and serving two years at Savannah (in the then American colony of Georgia), John was called to be a professor at Oxford University. This position paid 30 Pounds Sterling a year. He needed 28 pounds to pay all his expenses and then had two pounds to give away. The next year his income doubled, but he still lived on 28 pounds and now had 32 to give away. In the third year his income jumped to 90 pounds. Instead of letting his expenses rise with his income, he kept living on 28 pounds and gave away 62 pounds. This was his habit until his dying day.
John’s idea about money is that a Christian should get as much of it as possible! “In the hands of [God’s] children, it is food for the hungry, drink for the thirsty, raiment for the naked. It gives to the traveler and the stranger where to lay his head. By it we may supply the place of a husband to the widow, and of a father to the fatherless. We may be a defense for the oppressed, a means of health to the sick, of ease to them that are in pain. It may be as eyes to the blind, as feet to the lame: yea, a lifter up from the gates of death!”
Based on 1 Timothy 5:8 and 6:8 he believed you should make good and adequate provision for food, clothes, home and shelter for family and other dependents. Based on Romans 13:8 Creditors should be paid off while recognizing that those in business need adequate tools, capital and stock to do their business.
To sum it up, as a Christian’s income increases it is not the standard of living that should increase, but the standard of giving that should increase!
We have each been blessed to be a blessing. As you look at the opportunities and expenses of the coming holiday season, think and pray about how you will use your resources. For the year ahead think and pray about how you will support the ministry here at Apostles Lutheran Church with your time, talent and money. If you give a percentage of your income to the church, think and pray about increasing that gift by 1%. That is not an amount that will be missed by most of us. Watch how God makes up that much and more to you in the year ahead. In the same way think and pray about how you use your time, energies and talents. Recognizing that they don’t belong to us really, but are a generous gift from God above. Use them with his priorities in mind.
Enjoy the blessings and fun of the holiday season. And enjoy the grace of our good God who has made them all possible.