Dear Grace Family,
In the midst of this time of uncertainty and heavy sadness, there have been indelible conversations that have encouraged my pastoral heart. First, a majority of those I’ve talked to or heard from have asked “what can we do to help”. This shows an outward looking focus and desire to love, which is what we would hope for with all of our Grace family. Second, no one that I’ve talked to has engaged in panic, but has been measured, wise, and faith driven in their response, which is what we’d hope for with those who follow Jesus and seek to glorify our Father. Lastly, there have been many who’ve expressed their desire to continue to give, and even want to know how they can get their offering to the church. This is a gracious response when faced with health and economic uncertainty.
A few thoughts about giving during a shutdown:
We’d ask that you still give during this time – Giving to the church in a New Testament context was ALWAYS an act of faith, where we give out of joy and generosity (2 Corinthians 8:2). During the time of lock down while our services are meeting online, I’d suggest setting up online giving, sending your offering to the church, or saving it for when we’ll be back together
Giving is always proportional…and sacrificial – The church in Corinth was praised for giving according to their means. In other words, they were not particularly wealthy but they were known for their giving, literally giving “even beyond their means, of their own accord” (2 Corinthians 8:3). They gave proportionally AND sacrificially. There will certainly be those in our church family who will face losing hours, jobs, and income during this time. Our suggestion would be to continue to give, but give less, according to your means. We should approach giving with wisdom and faith, trusting God with all things and being good stewards with everything we’ve been given by God.
Give graciously…because of grace – We can give cheerfully with what we’ve decided in our heart (2 Corinthians 9:7) because we know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, “that though He was rich yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich” (2 Corinthians 8:9). What a model of giving by grace!
Thank you for your faithfulness, graciousness, and generosity. Please continue to pray that we will care for all those at Grace, and that we’d look outward to those who are in need in our community.
Pastor Jordan Bakker