Summary: The church and our lives should be one of generosity and giving.
Giving It Away
8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
Most Christians know this verse. Martin Luther penned the word “sola” in the margin of his Bible emphasizing that we can do nothing to earn salvation. Instead it is a gift from God. He has given us the gift of life – now with abundance and with infinite riches in the forever.
But while most Christians are familiar with this verse many are not aware of the next…
Giving Grace… Giving Life
10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
The New Year is a time to reflect and prepare. It’s a time for second chances, fresh starts, and new ways of living. During the month of January I will be sharing with you the 2012 vision for ministry at MCC based on Ephesians 2:8-10.
It’s not a new vision. It is the natural outgrowth of a church growing in spiritual maturity and in God’s grace. Look again at the verses in Ephesians 2.
Verse 8 tells us that we have been given God’s grace, that is the free gift of life – abundantly now, and joyfully tomorrow when we cross into eternity.
Verse 9 points out that this gift was not and indeed, cannot be earned by anything we have done.
In Verse 10 our purpose on this earth is revealed. It is to take the gift of life we have been given and to give it away through good works.
The church and our lives should be one of generosity and giving. These are not just words. This is a philosophy of life that invades everything that we do. When this way of thinking becomes a way of living it inhabits the totality of
your existence. Generosity isn’t something you do. It is the description of what you are.
Our vision for ministry at MCC in 2012 is one that based on a culture of generosity.
Watch this… (video)
A Culture of Generosity
* Generosity in supporting the Ministry of MCC
* Generosity with our Brothers and Sisters
* Generosity in Our Community
In the next several weeks I’m going to be teaching about generosity, stewardship, debt, giving, and whole lot of stuff about money.
You need to know three things going into this series of teaching… full disclosure.
1. I like to talk about tithing and giving offerings in church because it is closely connected to our spiritual wellbeing.
2. Someone is always uncomfortable when I teach on money. I have had people quit coming to church because I preached about money. I’ve even gotten a few anonymous letters – which I don’t read. (If it’s anonymous I can’t deal respond to the person and it just riled up with nowhere to go. If you send me a letter – sign it!)
3. Generosity makes me uncomfortable. This not my natural gift. My gift is being frugal. I am not a generous person. I am cheap. It’s hard for me to be generous.
So with those three thoughts let’s look at how we can be generous at MCC.