October 2019 – From the Pastor’s Desk

The Old Testament tells us God’s people followed the law of tithing. To accomplish this commandment, Church members give one-tenth of their income to the Lord through His Church. These funds are used to grow the Church and promote the truth of the Lord throughout the world. We are called to live by this principal throughout our lives. We also promise to do so when we are confirmed or profess our faith in the United Methodist Church.
A five-year study that culminated a few years ago, revealed that “only 10-25 percent of the families in the church tithe.” If we would try to put a picture to that, we learn that out of the 247 million US citizens who claim Christianity as their religion, only 1.5 million tithes. The math tells us this is less than 1%.
We talk continually of what it takes to support our church and not only through money, but also in way of service, presence, prayers and witness, just like it says in our membership promises. But for some reason, we find ourselves cringing when it comes to talking about our finances. It is a real piece of this church and what we are doing.
Let’s think about this study and put our own words and pictures to this…We have approximately 175 active members, let’s say they average about $15,000 in an annual income and multiply that by 10%, which is the tithe that God calls us to, our church would receive $262,500 annually for their yearly budget. Say instead, there is an average annual income of $25,000 and they decide they can only give 5%, that gives us $218,750 for our annual budget. While the first amount offers money on top of our budget, both scenarios would support our current ministry, but you see the difference….and though the point is not so much about having enough, its more about the idea of giving back to God, who then works at providing ways for us to share his love in more ways.
Besides that, we know that often we fall below tithing. And often, we look at our giving to church differently than what the Bible tells us.
What if every member of our church tithed? Would we be able to make an even greater difference in our church, community and/or world if we were to give as God called us to? How many more people could be reached with the gospel if we had the means to share it even more? We already touch many, many people through the things in place now. We have added regularly to our membership for a bit now and this is not the norm in the United Methodist Churches, and we can thank Jesus for bringing people to us. Can you imagine if we were to continue to add to our membership? What a blessing that would be!
Many of you have all kinds of stories about how God has provided amazing moments of clarity and presence. This letter is written to try and prompt a thought process and call all of us to a deeper sense of prayer about how we support our church. There is not a doubt that we can raise a great deal more than the numbers provided here. Throughout the next three months, you are going to hear lots about giving and supporting your church, so please be prepared. We will also do several things to try to raise the money we need to meet our budget for the end of the year:
  1. The Bison Feed, please come, as this is one way a family uses their resources to helps us raise dollars for our budget. We are thankful for that opportunity and we need to be a part of it.
  2. Our Dessert Auction at the end of the month, another wonderful way to support our Church and receive in return.
  3. In November we will be putting up a “Thanks” giving board with 100 envelopes on it. You will have the opportunity to choose an envelope and give the corresponding dollars written on it. Another painless, but simple way to support your church.
  4. Our annual Holiday Letter will go out mid-November/December.
We are also going to collect notes and letters from people who are a part of this Faith Family in varieties of ways, in order to hear from others how they feel about what happens here. Please read this note and those to come in the manner they are written. Giving and supporting your church is one of the most difficult yet fulfilling and meaningful pieces of church life, and something very important to our ministry to all of God’s people. It is also important to note that many churches are struggling right now.
We have made a difference in many lives and we can make a difference in even more people’s lives with your help. And remember, that is more than just dollars and cents! We need you as well! You are sometimes the only Bible some people will meet.
We need to continue building our strength to do so…
isn’t that a great thing!?