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Weekly Stewardship Meditations

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The 16th Sunday after Pentecost

“Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or do you begrudge my generosity?” (Matthew 20:15).

Generosity begets generosity. Jesus has given us all things in this life, and He has secured our eternal life by the power of His resurrection. It would literally take a lifetime to sit down and contemplate all the ways that our Lord’s generosity has blessed us personally. Yet, even a short list is enough to astound us at His generous and gracious heart. In joyful response, we then are set free to be generous in response, for the riches of the kingdom of heaven have been given to us already. With careful and intentional planning, you also can have a generous and faithful impact on the work of missions both here and abroad. There are many ways that we can deal with our assets when we have gone on to glory. However, what better gift can we give than to support the work of the Gospel and to respond with a generosity that follows the pattern of Jesus who has given us the kingdom. Contact one of our Gift Planning Counselors today, and they can help you explore ways that our Lord’s generous life can overflow to others for years to come.

The 15th Sunday after Pentecost

“Out of pity for him, the master of that servant released him and forgave him the debt” (Matthew 18:27).

Compassionate and forgiving: these are the attributes of this merciful master as he deals with his debtors. In many ways, this is the motivation behind all that the LWML seeks to do in their work. We seek to be the compassionate presence of Jesus that desires to understand people’s struggles and to walk with them through those difficult times when the debt of sin weighs heavily upon them. In addition, we seek ways to proclaim the forgiveness of our Savior, Jesus Christ, the One who has removed the stain of sin from our lives and brings peace to our heart and conscience. By His grace, the Lord has helped us be a blessing to so many, but we seek your help to assist us in moving forward. Gifts of Love is a program which will help the LWML to continue this compassionate and forgiving work well into the future. Our counselors are happy to assist you to look at ways that you can show forth your compassion and love for those outside of Christ’s Church so that they can see the mercy of God in Christ, be released from the debt of their sin, and join the fellowship of the saints who will dwell in the life of heaven eternally.

The 14th Sunday after Pentecost

“So it is not the will of my Father who is in heaven that one of these little ones should perish” (Matthew 18:14).

Jesus has been highlighting the importance of children in this chapter of Matthew’s Gospel. Children are to be welcomed, Jesus says. They are to be kept safe and not handed over to temptation and sin. They are vulnerable and are in need of loving parents and a loving community to watch over them and to show them the ways of God. Of course, by baptism, all of us have been made to be the children of God. In those waters, the Father has declared His love for us and has promised us His divine protection and eternal salvation. And now, it is through the Gospel that the Father is calling the world to be His children and to give them life. The Church has been tasked with carrying on this work by baptizing and teaching, making disciples of all nations (see Matthew 28:19–20). For many years, the LWML has been partnering with missionaries in various parts of the world to assist them in this important work, calling the nations to faith and life in Christ. With your help, and by the grace of God, this work can carry on unencumbered so that no one may perish outside of salvation, but be welcomed into the kingdom as children of our heavenly Father.

The 13th Sunday after Pentecost

“Whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul?” (Matthew 16:25–26a).

When it comes to the kingdom of God, things are upside down. The world would say that the one who has the most is clearly ahead of the game. The one who has little is sometimes viewed as insignificant. In the kingdom of God, however, it is only in losing that we gain everything. It is in letting go of our attachments to the world that we gain an eternal resting place for our soul. Such is the pattern that we see in God himself. The Father gave up His only Son so that salvation for the world would be gained.  In Christ, we also may set aside our worldly riches, and in so doing, we gain the riches of heaven itself. Through Gifts of Love, worldly riches are offered as a way for the Lord to carry on the work of connecting people to Christ and to the salvation He has won for the world. Missionaries are supported and encouragement is given to women in the Church to use their gifts in service to the Lord. This is how the LWML can continue to serve the world with the Word of God and His love for us all in Christ. Prayerfully consider how the Lord might be calling you to offer up some of your blessings so that He might gain the world for Christ.

The 12th Sunday after Pentecost

Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matthew 16:13).

Once again we hear a powerful, bold confession before Jesus. Last week it was the Canaanite woman who called Jesus “Lord.” This week it is Peter: You are the Christ. Jesus is the Messiah, the long-awaited One, who has been promised to set the world to rights once again. This confession is the one upon which the Church is built, and as Jesus promises, even hell cannot tear it down. Such is the confession we pray all would have. Through Gifts of Love, the LWML has been able to ensure that we have resources to help us bear witness to Christ for years to come. Our desire is to help the Gospel get out into the world by any means possible so that the Spirit of God may work on the hearts of all people, leading them to the same confession of Peter, and to live in the same hope. Through careful, prayerful planning, you can come alongside us in this important work. Our Gift Planning Counselors stand ready to assist you, to answer your questions, and to show you how you can help to support the LWML and to connect others to Christ, the Son of the living God.

The 11th Sunday after Pentecost

But she came and knelt before him, saying, “Lord, help me” (Matthew 15:25).

It is a simple prayer from a foreign woman. In this prayer, however, she is not simply declaring that Jesus is a miracle worker, but that He is Lord, and that He has the power to help. There are many who neither have this knowledge, nor have any connection to the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ. They go through life and experience all that we do, but without hope. They cry for help, but who can help? The LWML seeks to point people to Jesus as the source of divine and eternal help for all the world. Through the generous donations that are received, we are able support missions and mercy work all around the world. We are able to answer the cry for help for many people, and it is a blessing to be able to do so. The true hope, though, is to allow people to cry out with the faith of the Canaanite woman: Lord, help me. He is the One who can truly help, and who truly fills all things with His grace. Won’t you consider helping us to do this work? Gifts of Love assists the LWML in looking ahead so that the Gospel can continue to go out and connect people to the divine help that is Jesus, our Lord and Savior.

The 10th Sunday after Pentecost

Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” (Matthew 14:31).

Little-faith. That’s what Jesus calls Peter after He pulled him up out of the water. That must have felt like a slap in the face, especially in front of the other disciples. Hearing the story of Peter attempting to walk on the water might give us cause to puff out our chest a bit and think we would have been bolder. Surely if Jesus had invited us out of the boat, we would have made it all the way to Him, right? Maybe. Our life might say something else, however. Like Peter, we may have been walking boldly before the Lord back in January and February. Then, a pandemic came upon us, and everyone retreated. The wind and wave of virus and fear swept over us, too, and for many, it seemed like they were drowning. It was even harder to stay fixed on Christ when we couldn’t even go to church! Yet, even in the storm-tossed world we live in, Jesus promises always to be there. He reaches out to us, grabs us by the hand, and lifts us to safety in His loving arms. While these times may still be a bit scary, the work of the LWML goes on, supporting women in their life in Christ and supporting mission work around the world. Even now, consider how you might support Gifts of Love so that in good or scary times, we can continue to connect people to Jesus and to His powerful hand that saves us all from peril and gives us true security and life.

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