Dear St. Lukers,
In God we trust. This statement and the past three Sundays has called us to examine all the things we put in the place of God’s name in our lives. As Pastor Corey and I have shared, our actions show we sometimes trust more in ourselves, others, money, and status than we do in God with the totality of our lives. Those other things we place in the blank of “In _____ we Trust” do not only block us spiritually from fully trusting in God, but they become obstacles to sacrificial generosity toward God and God’s church.
Our scripture from Jeremiah for Sunday is one familiar to many. Jeremiah 29 says “For I know the plans I have for you, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future…”
God has not only invited us to trust God with our entire lives, but also with the ministry of this God’s holy Church. All Saints Day reminded us that before the saints were our beloved, they were first God’s beloved. And so it is with St. Luke’s United Methodist Church. Before there was the first leveling of ground or first wall placed on this property, God had a vision of the people who would be reached and the life transformation which could happen through the ministry and work of a United Methodist church on this road. God had plans for St. Luke’s to prosper and flourish and give the people of the West Orange community hope and a future far beyond their imagination.
Although faces and programs may have changed in the last 39 years, God’s promise and vision for St. Luke’s to be a place of hope and transformation has not. In fact, over the last year, God has placed new dreams and visions on the hearts of all of us who call ourselves St. Lukers and claim this is our home. God has brought each one of us here to be a part of the continuing vision for St. Luke’s ministry to offer our community hope and a future. God has a vision to call us and use us for the purpose of helping St. Luke’s continue to be a beacon of hope and love for our neighbors and for our lives to be a part of St. Luke’s legacy.
We are called to not only trust God with all of our lives, but to trust we are a part of God’s plans for St. Luke’s to prosper in the new visions and dreams for our community. In God we trust, now we ask can God trust us? Your promise card helps us understand how to manage and plan our budget for the ministries of 2019. No matter what size the gift, the promise card empowers us to know how we can live into God’s vision of building disciples for the building of the Kingdom. This Sunday you will receive your 2019 Stewardship Look Book and Promise Card if you haven’t already picked one up. Prayerfully consider your promise to use all God has given you to continue to help St. Luke’s prosper and offer hope and a future for our community. We invite you to bring your promise cards back for worship this Sunday or next Sunday.
Grace and Peace,