God is bringing us together for Christ! On the night before his crucifixion, when Jesus prayed for his disciples, he appealed to God, “I ask not only on behalf of these, but also on behalf of those who will believe in me through their word, that they all may be one. As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me” (John 17:20-21).
When Christians talk about “salvation,” we are talking about being brought into union with our Creator. Ultimately we will have the same intimacy with God that Jesus has with his Father. Through the death and resurrection of the Son of God, and through the sheer wonder of God’s amazing grace, you and I and everyone else are invited to participate in the life of the Holy Trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. In John 17:3, we read, “And this is eternal life, that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent.”
To be drawn into oneness with God means also to be drawn into oneness with each other. In John 17:22-23, Jesus prays, “The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.” To love one another in the Body of Christ, to be at one with each other, is the highest witness we can make to convince the world that God truly has sent Jesus to be the Savior.
Our stewardship drive, Together for Christ, is a call to come together to love God and to love one another, for the sake of the world Christ died to save. Even as God’s love for us took on flesh in the life of Jesus, our love for God and for one another must “take on flesh” in shared ministry. My financial giving to God through the Church is one way that I enact my worship of God, my love for God, and my love for others. My giving becomes one with your giving as the Body of Christ is strengthened and empowered to express God’s love for the world.
I believe in the Biblical principle of tithing, bringing ten percent of my gross income to the altar, as an act of worship. Whatever one gives, the key is that it be a genuine expression of love – love of God and love of neighbor. When all our acts of giving, small or large, are brought together for Christ, Christ himself can manifest God’s love through our oneness in ways that bring salvation to people’s lives. May God bring us together for Christ!
Grace and peace,
Trinity United Methodist Church
3430 Harrison | Beaumont, TX 77706
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