“Merciful Father, we offer with joy and thanksgiving what you have first given us—our selves, our time, and our possessions, signs of your gracious love. Receive them for the sake of him who offered himself for us, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”
Lutheran Book of Worship, Setting One Offertory Prayer
Dear Messiah and St. Stephen’s family,
The offertory prayer printed above from the Lutheran Book of Worship has been formative for my faith. There is a cadence and rhythm to this prayer that my home congregation instinctively knew as we recited the prayer together before Holy Communion. This prayer has also formed my understanding of Christian stewardship. Everything is a gift from God. We are stewards of everything that God has entrusted to our care. This includes our bodies, the time in each day, and our material possessions. Stewardship is a daily act of worship, expressing the faith God has given us and a way of growing in relationship with God. Stewardship is about all of life--about giving ourselves to God, and using all that God has given us in grateful ways. Stewardship is the way of life for people who belong to God.
The current pandemic has challenged my stewardship in all aspects of life—finding new ways of nurturing relationships with friends and family near and far; in-person pastoral visits changed to electronic Zoom meetings or phone conversations through windows; and discovering new ways of daily living thru social distancing guidelines.
Yet, in the midst of this pandemic, the God of abundance continues to bless us and lead us to wisely steward everything that God has entrusted to us. As congregations we will continue to share God’s bounteous gifts and manage them for the best promotion of God’s purposes in the world. It is in grateful response to God and through faith in Jesus Christ that we steward the gifts of God to renew and bless the entire creation!
Peace be with you!
11:30 am, 2nd Sunday of every month
Faith 5 Meetings
Every Sunday at 7:00-7:45 pm via Zoom
*Highs for the week
*Lows for the week
*A Bible verse & how that verse relates to us
*Pray for One Another
*Bless One Another