Stewardship Notes for January 2019

     As we are beginning another year of Grace, we contemplate the work that God has called us to do, and the steps that must be undertaken, because we are Stewards of God’s Mission. God’s mission is the restoration and reconciliation of all people to unity with God and each other in Christ.  
     After his Resurrection, Jesus told his disciples, Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.”  When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”  [John 20:21-23 NRSV] Elsewhere in the New Testament, we read, “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, in order that you may proclaim the mighty acts of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.  Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.”  [1 Peter2:9-10 NRSV]  These two scriptural texts are just a small sample about Christians being called to carry on God’s mission in our world. We also could cite many other Bible verses about our mission. As Stewards of God’s Mission, we are called to glorify God and to fulfill God’s deep desire by telling people about Christ’s redemptive work, by showing God’s love, and by healing the world’s brokenness. Embodying God’s mission in our world is a big responsibility. How can we do that?
     One thing is certain, we cannot do it by ourselves, or through our own natural abilities. But the Holy Spirit empowers the Church to fulfill God’s mission. The Holy Spirit equips us, both individually and collectively, to tell people that through Jesus, they can be reconciled to God. Furthermore, the Holy Spirit sends us out to confront injustice, and also to alleviate suffering wherever we find them. As people of faith, hope, and love, let us pray for strength to respond appropriately whenever we have opportunities to share God’s love with others. And encourage and support our congregation leaders as they seek to organize us for doing God’s work in our community and in the world. Don’t expect others to do the work of being God’s people. Be a Steward of God’s Mission yourself, an active participant using the gifts that the Holy Spirit has entrusted to you. What are we here for? To be the Body of Christ in our world. Find ways that you can help to fulfill God’s mission, whenever and wherever you are.  
     At Peace Lutheran Church, our Pastor, Church Staff, Church Council members, and members of the Boards of Worship, Spiritual Development, Outreach, Property, Congregational & Community Care, and Preschool all want you to join us in our ministries of welcome, worship, learning, and service throughout 2019. Soon you also will be hearing about exciting new ministry opportunities with our partner organizations, Hill Country Community Ministries, Capital Area Food Bank, and others. Be Stewards of God’s Mission in those endeavors too!