October 2019 Worship Corner
STEWARDSHIP AS WORSHIP
by Martha Ramsey, Director of Worship Arts & Music Ministries
October is the time when we focus on Stewardship at St. Paul’s. As I was thinking and studying about Stewardship, one point kept coming up in everything I read: STEWARDSHIP IS WORSHIP. Christian Stewardship is a fundamental part of Christian Discipleship. It is concerned with the gifts of God and the way we use these gifts. It is concerned with the love and commitment of God to his world and its people and with our response to God’s love and God’s commitment.
Worship has a pivotal role in any consideration of Christian Stewardship in the life of the Church. In worship we give thanks for the gifts of God; we confess our failure to use these gifts as God expects them to be used; we explore the pages of the Bible and engage in theological reflection on God’s giving and our response; we offer to God our time, our talent, our money to glorify him and advance his kingdom.
Christian Stewardship acknowledges the many gifts we receive from God and reminds us that these gifts should be used to praise God the giver. The way we use our money and other possessions is one indication of our willingness to praise God in every aspect of our lives. We are expected to display a sharing, unselfish attitude in the way we use these resources at our disposal.
In his article An Invitation to Faithful Stewardship, James L. Brewer-Calvert, Sr. Pastor at First Christian Church of Decatur, GA shares the following teaching of his father. I think this is a good challenge for each of us:
- Dedicate the first two hours of work each week to God and see how your attitude at work and productivity and collegial relationships and family life improve.
- Give the first tithe of your time and effort in a relationship to God and see how that impacts your friendships.
- Give to God your first two thoughts of a new day and see if your daylight hours aren’t brighter.
- Give the first two hours of your weekly income to God and see if you still don’t have enough for all the rest of your bills and livelihood.
- Make the first check or automatic payment be your tithe to God’s ministry, then watch with gratitude how the Lord provides for you and yours.
In closing, I would like to share these words of John Davies in World on Loan:
When we worship, as Christians, we bend our minds and imaginations and motives to fit God’s mind and God’s intentions. The wavelength and wave-pattern of our human spirit are adjusted to coincide with the Holy Spirit. Our value-system is corrected by God’s values. This is what true worship is about.