We pray. We study the Bible. We make friends. We tell our stories. We give ourselves away in generosity and service.
A PERSONAL PRAYER
There are so many things that are obligations, things I have to do. I hear people say “the only thing you have to do is pay taxes and die.” Nope. At least it doesn’t feel that way to me. Because I am in relationships, because I live in a world where other people live, I have certain duties to perform as a husband, a father, a son, a friend, a citizen, a pastor, a leader, a member of St. Luke’s, and most of all, a Christian. All of these are covenants of which I am a part. And when I have my head screwed on right, I know that these duties are what life is all about, that doing the very tasks required by these covenants gives me great joy. Is it possible, God, to know joy at the same time I do something that is an obligation? I think so, God. Each task is a small investment in something that really matters. And the more I invest, the more I experience the blessings of that relationship and promise. You created me to serve. You created me to give, to give myself away, a minute, an hour, a day at a time. And when I do that which I was created to do, I feel joy! Thank you, God. Send me to do my duty to my family, my church, my community, my country, my fellow human beings, and most of all, to you.
In the name of the one who came to do his duty for us, Jesus Christ.
KEY VERSE FOR THE WEEK
It’s the same with you. When you’ve done everything expected of you, be matter-of-fact and say, ‘The work is done. What we were told to do, we did.’” –Luke 17:10 (The Message) Read the whole scripture passage for this Sunday here: Luke 17:7-10
QUESTIONS FOR CONVERSATION
When has duty been a joy for you? How would you answer the question “what were you made to do?”
SOME THOUGHTS TO SHARE
Last Sunday’s grand opening and ribbon cutting was so amazing. What a wonderful spirit of gratitude and joy our congregation has. I am so thankful for everyone who has worked so hard to make the day so special. It is such a privilege to serve this congregation and to work with this team of staff and lay leaders. Just yesterday, we received our permanent certificate of occupancy, so the Johnson building will be open for entrance to the main buildings. Classes and groups will be moving to new spaces at various times in the future, so watch for information about those moves. Yay.
We continue our series this week, entitled Rich in Heart, as we look at the components of a rich and full life and how generosity both helps us take hold of that life and grows out of it. We will look at “duty,” and discuss how our generosity and service grow out of covenants of which we are a part. If you are a member of St. Luke’s church, I hope you received a letter from me and a commitment card in the mail. Your financial decision is between you and the Lord, but I ask that you please take it seriously. We ask that you pray through the prayers below, one for each day, to help you discern God’s will for your 2017 financial commitment. Your pledge is important because
1) it is a way that you are intentional about your own generosity, and
2) it helps the church to budget to meet our needs. You can make that commitment online here, and we will dedicate our pledge cards on Sunday, October 30.
Sunday, October 23
Heavenly Father, help me to be the man you want me to be- father, son, husband, brother, friend and all the other roles you’ve given me in life. Be with me as I work to become who you want me to be.
-Mike Stroman, Generosity Committee
Monday, October 24
Today, think about what a giving God we have. Everything in your life is a gift from God and we are called to be good stewards of these gifts. Give thanks to God in prayer for your many blessings.
Tuesday, October 25
Today, focus on the many amazing ministries at St. Luke’s. Think about the lives of children, youth and adults we bring closer to Jesus through these ministries. Give thanks to God for all God is doing at St. Luke’s through our many programs.
Wednesday, October 26
Today, think about the joy you receive serving within a ministry at St. Luke’s. Everyone has a role in accomplishing the Lord’s mission and what a gift it is to give oneself away in generosity and service. Thank God for the opportunity to serve our church and the world.
Thursday, October 27
Today, think about your current giving level and prayerfully consider increasing your gift. Give thanks to God for all God has given you and for the strength to step out in faith and give more.
Friday, October 28
Today, as you complete your pledge card, ask God for wisdom and guidance. Trust the joy that will come as you once again give yourself away in generosity and service to your church. Thank God for this opportunity to give.
Saturday, October 29
Dear Lord God, Jesus and Holy Spirit, I praise your name and pray your will be done. Holy Spirit please help me do your will and not my own. Lord Jesus, thank you for saving me and all of us. I love you Lord.
-Craig LaFollette, Generosity Committee