This past week I was visiting with one of our families in the hospital and the husband reached in his pocket and took out their tithing envelope and handed it to me to take to the office. I can’t tell you how many times that has happened to me in almost 40 years of ministry. I have been in the hospital with someone that was terminal and they would say, “Pastor, please take my tithe to the office.” I don’t know if you know how amazing that is or not, but it is absolutely amazing! They were giving for one reason; they were stunned by the gratitude of God and could not help but give. They were not trying to pay for something or give something at the last minute of life, hoping for blessings. These same people were never deterred by anything from giving, not even in the depression. They supported their church but their church was not their primary motivation. Their commitment to give was totally and completely because of what Christ had done for them. They trusted Him with their soul eternally and as a result they could easily trust Him with the material things of life. This past week I read an interesting statistic about church giving, about tithing. It is a fact that Christians gave at a higher percentage in the depression than they do today. Sure they gave less money, they had less, but their giving percentage was higher, in the midst of poverty. It is also interesting that the more money “believers” make the less they give. One would think that it would be the opposite, the more we receive the more we give, but it does not work that way. Jesus tells us that we can’t serve God and money because we will in actuality love one and hate the other. It is as if one cancels out the other. Love of God cancels love of money, and love of money cancels love of God. One would think with the wealth in this country among believers that churches would prosper bountifully, but that is not the case. The potential is there but many look at giving as a duty and not a grateful response for what Christ has done. I am convinced that when Jesus captures a heart He also captures earthly treasure. Hopefully all of you received a letter from your pastor with the support of the elders. Our elders have a spiritual focus about our church for today and tomorrow. We trust God for today and we trust Him for tomorrow, but our trust in Him must grow for us to continue to be an effective church in our community for generations to come. Your spiritual leadership team is taking the lead in encouraging each of us to give generously to the cause of Christ at Crosspath, each of us to take personal ownership of today and tomorrow because of what Christ has done. Thank you for your faithfulness in giving and your response already to the need.
During the Month of August there will be no afternoon or evening activities or services on the first two Sunday evenings of the month. On August 17, we have a church wide Life Project to work on the High School stadium dressing rooms (visitors). On Sunday evening August 24, at 5pm, we will watch the powerful movie, God’s Not Dead. Make sure you see the movie if you haven’t seen it and bring someone with you, or invite someone. And if you have seen it I am sure you want to see it again. It is just that good! ESL will go on at the regular time, 5-6:30pm, beginning August 3.
Volunteers – We are still looking for volunteers. Have you seen any volunteers lately that are not involved specifically in a Christ honoring ministry? If you see any, we need volunteers in every area of our work. We especially need workers in AWANA and ESL. I can promise you one thing: if you get involved in either of these ministries you will be blessed miraculously. Thanks to all of you for your faithful service in so many ways. You are a blessing to the Lord, the church and your pastor.