One of my favorite prayers comes from the Lutheran Book of Worship, when at the offering it suggests that we all say this:
Merciful Father, we offer with joy and thanksgiving what you have first given us--our selves, our time, and our possessions, signs of your gracious love. Receive them for the sake of him who offered himself for us, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Some say it's hard to understand God as a king, or queen, or monarch. It is hard, I guess, if we don't accept that God truly does reign over us.
But God's reign is the reign of freedom. God is eternal, and therefore God's reign knows no borders and no bounds. No force can stop God, nothing stand in the way of God's giving. So Christ is King and gives responsibility to his subjects, and expects them to serve and he serves them. But the reign of God does not rest on our success or failure. For where we are weak, Christ our King offers everything he is, everything he has for us--even his divine life. And so, no matter how dark the times seem, we can act in the freedom of knowing that Christ reigns, and not the power of darkness.
Pledge Sunday is a time for us to remember that all we are and all we have--our selves, our time, our possessions--are indeed gifts from God, for our benefit and for God's glory. Our prayer is that we use these gifts for the benefit of others and so that God may be glorified through them.
It's a day for you to give thanks for God's reign over you life, to rejoice that God has chosen you for his service, that God has given you gifts for God's purposes.
So come and rejoice!
Bring a water vessel and meet in the garden to begin church at 11AM. We will use them to rededicate our renovated garden.
This Sunday we give to God our pledges of time, gifts, and money. Pledge Sunday isn't drudgery--it's life-changing, when we experience the freedom of serving God instead of chasing down the dollar. Come and pledge!