H OLY C ROSS L UTHERAN C HURCH Stewardship Team Newsletter
“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” – Matthew 6:21 –
W E R ECEIVE
H OLY C ROSS :
W E G IVE
VOLUME 9, ISSUE 10 October 2011
“God has given us two hands – one to receive with and the other to give with. We are not cisterns made for hoarding; we are channels made for sharing.” – Billy Graham
Stewardship at Holy Cross plays out in many ways – acts of service, sharing one’s expertise or talents, or giving money. Being a good steward is a trait we all want to be known by. When I think of being a servant to others, I think of Jesus washing the feet of his disciples at the Last Supper.... A strong example of being a servant to others from the greatest servant of all.
As I come to the end of my presidency at Holy Cross, I think back on all the things I have learned about stewardship at our church the past three and a half years. The signs of stewardship are everywhere. I have seen many at Holy Cross volunteer repeatedly and give generously. We are a loving and grace-filled community that cares about one another. We committed to an expansion project that will require all of us to help pay for it, and many have stepped up to the plate and given generously. We continue to be blessed by getting additional gifts toward some of the furnishings and equipment that will help us “finish” this new space. I also have been shocked by some things I have learned about stewardship. Some statistics have shown that a surprising 53% of Christians in our country have not given anything to their church last month. At Holy Cross many have given less than $5.00 every month. We continue to have blank lists for volunteers to teach Sunday School, usher, assist with communion, etc. Many stand at the edge and think, “Someone else will do it.”
I used to be that person. I gave little and volunteered even less. I can tell you for certain that I will never be “that person” again. I have finally learned the lesson of stewardship – the more I give, the more I receive. Now it is hard for me to imagine not getting involved or not giving to support the ministry of my church. Getting involved and supporting the church financially does wonders for the soul. So I challenge you to come to church and open your minds and hearts to the lessons of stewardship. Open your two hands – one to receive the gifts and grace offered here, and the other to give your acts of service, talents and/or money. The more you give the more you will receive. Thank you all for allowing me to be a leader of our great church... Thanks Be To God! Court Anderson, Holy Cross Council President
Quarterly Statistics 2 Reflections from Scripture
My Stewardship Story
Year-to-Date Giving Statement
Dave Anderson Tom Barr Rick Cerkowniak Mike Dircksen Aaron Kvistero Adam Roark Bruce Swan Nolan Thompson
It is the mission of the Stewardship Team to help people grow in faith as trustees of God’s generous gifts.
MONTHLY STATISTICS July — September 2011 Mission & Ministry Income $ 167,832 Expenses $ 179,893 M&M Budget 2011 $ 171,427 Building Mort. & Maint. Fund Income $ 28,446 Expenses $ 21,263 B&M Budget 2011 $ 44,300 Mortgage Loan Balance $ 792,986 CONSTRUCTION LOAN BALANCE Received $ 1,793,474
‘NOW IS THE TIME!’ Received $ 326,149 Spent $ 307,831 Balance $ 18,319 Out of town?
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II C ORINTHIANS 8:1 – 5: We want you to know, brothers and sisters, about the grace of God that has been granted to the churches of Macedonia; for during a severe ordeal of affliction, their abundant joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. For, as I can testify, they voluntarily gave according to their means, and even beyond their means, begging us earnestly for the privilege of sharing in this ministry to the saints – and this, not merely as we expected; they gave themselves first to the Lord and, by the will of God, to us. What an amazing passage. The Macedonians, by right, should have been asking for financial aid! Paul describes their poverty as “extreme.” But, instead of focusing on their needs, they seized the opportunity to be overly generous! The Christians in Jerusalem were suffering, and Paul wanted to secure some help for them. Did he ask the Macedonians for help, or did they catch wind of it and jump on the chance to give?
Paul gets right to the reason for their generosity. “They gave themselves first to the Lord and by the will of God to us,” Paul explains.
Right there you have the basis for Christian stewardship. Our giving is determined by (1) need and (2) gratitude for what God has done for us. For those two reasons the Macedonians (and we) have to give. We do not want to be deprived of the basic need to give.
By Pastor Dave Johnson, Interim Senior Pastor
A simple choice; a generous response
C ONSUMER OR C ONTRIBUTOR
By Tom Barr, Stewardship Team
I recently attended my nephew’s church and heard a message that really struck me. The pastor spoke about the difference between consuming and contributing, and I’d like to share some thoughts about how this relates to stewardship at Holy Cross.
Every congregation is made up of people at various stages between consuming and contributing, much like a child grows from needing everything provided for him to the point where he can care for and help others. And I believe it’s important for each of us to consider where we are on the scale from being a consumer to becoming a full contributor.
Some of us are at a point where we really need to receive all that the church has to offer. If this is you, you can be assured that Holy Cross is a church that is happy to provide you and your family all you need to grow in your faith; and we (the members of Holy Cross) are here to help, comfort, and support you. On the other hand, if you have consumed the Word of God, have grown in your faith and, in connecting to the church, have developed to a point that you can become a greater contributor; then by all means please do try to find ways you can help share the gifts God has given you. This is what Stewardship is all about – Contributing in ways that God will find pleasing.