How Table Talk Shapes Our Hospitality and Generosity
In the book A Meal with Jesus, author Tim Chester points out the abundance of meals in the gospel of Luke. Luke writes, “the Son of Man [Jesus] came to seek and to save the lost” (Luke 19:10). That’s a clear mission statement. But any mission needs an effective strategy or method of implementation. So, Chester points out, Luke also tells us, “The Son of Man has come eating and drinking…” (Luke 7:34). How did Jesus carry out his mission of seeking and saving the lost? What was his strategy or methodology? Meals. Jesus chooses to make the rich grace of God real and tangible as he breaks bread with friends and with those whom religion had marginalized and alienated. “Food isn’t just fuel… It’s gift, generosity, grace… a central ingredient in our experience of God’s goodness.”i
Sharing God’s goodness is what Stewardship is really about. When we financially support Trinity we fund ministries that make God’s grace real and tangible in people’s lives. Last month, my pastor’s article talked about Trinity’s Caring Fund. We all know that caring costs something; it costs money, it costs our time, it costs our talents. When we invest in the lives of others, it costs us something. Jesus’ investment in us cost him his life. We have a chance to share his grace when we invest in the ministries of Trinity.
Trinity’s 2018 pledges were $198,837. This pledged amount is far shy of what is needed for Trinity to carry out its ministry. So, for this fall’s Stewardship Campaign, we are challenging every member to increase their pledge. If we can attain a $20,000 increase, it will allow us to address budget shortfall and to allocate $5,000 for Trinity’s Caring Fund Ministry in 2019. Trinity’s Caring Fund is changing lives by addressing needs like groceries, rent, utilities, etc. within the context of supportive Christian community. It is a fulfillment of our vision of “growing in love and service through relationships with God and community.” While contributions to the Caring Fund are helpful, they do not provide for the costs of “doing business” – staff time and skills and supplies that keep this ministry operational. Trinity’s leadership has taken significant steps in recent years to reduce facility and staffing costs so that your giving is focused on ministry.
I would ask you to gather your family around the table and talk about your experience of God’s grace and how you can share the goodness of God’s grace with others in need by financially supporting Trinity. Will you increase your giving in 2019 so that Trinity can increase the number of people touched by the grace of Jesus in real and tangible ways?
i A Meal With Jesus: Discovering Grace, Community, & Mission around the Table by Tim Chester; Crossway Pub, Wheaton, IL; 2011
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