Each Summer at Annual Conference, Bishop Beard challenges us to “Get Fired Up.” We’re to move forward with hearts warmed by the Holy Spirit. We’re not where we were. But we are standing on holy ground. In Exodus 3:2-5, God speaks to Moses through a burning bush. Moses was doing his everyday thing, watching the flock, when he saw something extraordinary. A bush was burning, but not on fire. God has heard the Israelites cries. God knows the injustices and directs Moses saying, “So get going! I’m sending you!”
We were doing our everyday thing, going to work, attending school, caring for children or parents, when something extraordinary happened. COVID closed our doors, moved us home, kept us from doing our normal ways of connecting with one another. We continue to alter our lives in an effort to keep our community healthy. But God hears our cries. Our church has heard the community’s cries. And like God telling Moses to get going to bring the people out of Egypt, God calls us to bring fellowship, connection, and blessings to our community.
It is hard to plan for the future when we don’t know what the future looks like and each week comes with new guidelines. Imagine what it was like for Moses, who only knew of the Pharaoh’s government and the subjugation of the Israelites. How could Moses trust that it could be different? Moses trusted God. Moses took the first step onto holy ground. Moses asked God questions. Why me? What should I say? Moses doubted people would listen to him. He didn’t speak well. He asked God to send someone else. Instead, God gave Moses a partner. Aaron would be Moses’ spokesperson.
Like Moses, God has called us to step onto holy ground. In the midst of uncertainty, our church is still being church. In the midst of uncertainty, we're called to be generous. God created us to be generous in all circumstances. In giving, we find the blessings of God.
In this year's stewardship campaign, it's important to remind your congregation of a few things: trust God through uncertainty, the work of your church is exciting and meaningful, and your church cares about you.
Here you'll find resources to help with a stewardship or giving campaign in your congregation. From sermon outlines to a sermon by Bishop Beard and graphics and templates that will help you facilitate generosity in your congregation. Click on the resource and it will either be downloaded to your computer to open or opened in a new window. Resources are given in Word or PDF format. If you need a different format or have any other questions, feel free to contact Amy Shreve, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Giving Guide- color, black & white, editable
Stewardship Sermon by Bishop Beard
I Movie Outline- create a short movie trailer showing how your church lives into your mission
Providing opportunities for members to think about the ways their money is used and how God could be calling us to prioritize our money will set people free to live generously. Think about offering financial planning resources through Financial Peace, I Was Broke Now I’m Not, or connecting with a financial planner for 1:1 consultation or a seminar. Host a church-wide study using Enough by Adam Hamilton or The Generosity Challenge by Scott McKenzie and Kristine Miller. Both offer biblical reflections and financial planning to help people tackle the sin of greed and provide the space to give generously.
Some of the resources have been adapted from Enough Stewardship Program Guide by Adam Hamilton (2018) and Generosity Rising: Lead a Stewardship Revolution in Your Church. by Scott McKenzie (2016) ©Abingdon Press Used by Permissions. All rights reserved.