Summary: We are to be full of grace (and thus, givers).
Th: Grace-Full Living
Pr: WE ARE TO BE FULL OF GRACE.
?: How? How do we be full of grace?
How do we give? by following…
KW: Principles (of grace, giving)
TS: We will find in our study two principles of giving that show how we can be full of grace.
The ____ principle of giving is…
The ____ outcome of our giving is…
RMBC 8/27/00 AM
ILL Notebook: Money (ten dollahs)
Stumpy Grinder and his wife Martha were from Portland, Maine. Every year they went to the Portland Fair, and every year Stumpy said, “Ya know Mahtha, I’d like ta get a ride in that theah aihplane,” and every year Martha would say “I know Stumpy, but that theah aihplane ride costs ten dollahs…and ten dollahs is ten dollahs.” So Stumpy said, “By Jeebers Mahtha, I’m 71 yeahs old, if I don’t go this time I may nevah go.” Martha replied, “Stumpy, that theah aihplane ride is ten dollahs…and ten dollahs is ten dollahs.”
But the pilot overheard them and said, “Folks, I’ll make you a deal. I’ll take you both up for a ride. If you can stay quiet for the entire ride and not say ONE word, I won’t charge you. But just one word, and it’s ten dollars.”
They agreed and up they went. The pilot did all kinds of twists and turns, rolls and dives, but not a word was heard. He did it one more time, still nothing…so he landed.
He turned to Stumpy as they came to a stop and said, “By golly, I did everything I could think of to get you to holler out, but you didn’t.” And Stumpy replied, “Well, I was gonna say something when Mahtha fell out…but ten dollahs is ten dollahs!”
Have you ever noticed the hold money has on people?
Perhaps we should be more personal.
Have you ever noticed the hold money has on you?
Sometimes we find it very hard to let go of it, don’t we?
Perhaps we think we should spend it for another matter.
Perhaps we feel we should save it for something else.
And we never seem to have enough.
We would all feel a bit more secure if we had two times or three times more than we have now…
We all know that churches have reputations of always talking about or asking for money.
And to be truthful, just as for any organization, money is an issue.
To prove it, check my mail from time to time and you will discover that there are all kinds of companies out there that are willing, for a fee of course, to help us with the stewardship program of our church.
So you may not be surprised at what length, for example, some leaders in a church will go to…
ILL Internet: electrocution
The story is told of a pastor who was about to speak on stewardship. And he took the drastic action of calling in an electrician and wiring the pews. The next day, when the offering time came, the pastor announced, "From now on all pledges will be made publicly in the worship service." Then he added, "All those who will pledge $10 per week, stand." At that moment, the switch was thrown that sent the juice through the wires in the pews. The response was immediate—one half of the congregation jumped to their feet. Then the pastor said, "All those who will pledge $20 please stand." The electrician raised the voltage and a second, stronger shock wave caused more people to rise. The whole process was repeated several more times. Each time the amount was raised and so was the voltage. The ushers had to work frantically to get all the names and the pledges written down. Later, in the counting room, the pastor and his staff were busy adding up the totals and congratulating themselves on the great success of the campaign, that is, until an usher came in and announced that four parishioners had stubbornly remained glued to their seats and were electrocuted.
Anybody out there ready to make a pledge?
OK, maybe that wasn’t so funny after all!
But let me be serious here…
1. Money is a matter of spirituality.
In the church, we have sometimes let money become a secular matter as opposed to a spiritual matter.
This is why some churches (including many Baptists) run with two governing boards—trustees and deacons.
The trustees handle the secular matters, including the money.
The deacons handle the spiritual matters.
I believe that this is a false distinction.
Money is a spiritual issue because it is about control.
Who is in charge?
Richard Halverson, former chaplain of the Senate has said: