“What if?” Is that a phrase that strikes fear in you as you consider all the trouble this world finds itself in these days? “What if?” is a question we often ask when we feel insecure. Security is one of our basic needs, and thinking about all the “What ifs” can cause anxiety issues. But what if? What if that question wasn’t so much about our fears and more about our possibilities? What if when we trust God, God can do far more with what we give, in our lives and in the lives of others, than we could possibly imagine or do on our own?
In October we will have a worship/stewardship series, “What if…?” We’ll imagine what God could do through us if we really trust God with what he’s blessed us. We will begin on October 1 with “What if…we Celebrate!” The Deuteronomic call for a tithe was not just about money, but about celebrating. It was a party where the people celebrated God’s goodness. We don’t celebrate enough, so let us begin with a celebration.
Our church calendar is full, and we tend to move from event to event without pausing to evaluate or celebrate our successes. During this coming month as we prepare to celebrate, will you share with me your ideas of what we have to celebrate and how we can celebrate? Later this month, we will distribute sticky notes to celebrate ministries around the church. You will be encouraged to write a note of thanks for ministries that have impacted you and place the sticky notes in the appropriate areas.
We will celebrate God’s goodness in worship Oct 1 through music, Word, and Eucharist (another term for Communion that is a transliteration of the Greek word eucharistia, which is itself a translation of the Hebrew word berekah. All three words have the meaning of thanksgiving, or praise for the wonderful works of God.) Finally, the day will culminate with celebrating together at our annual picnic at 3:00 PM in the parking lot with games, sharing, eating, and evening devotions and singing.
The following week we will consider, “What if…we humble ourselves and pray?” Then we will celebrate the ministry of the Laity on Laity Sunday with Shirley Keck preaching and the celebrating of ministries together with 17 sister churches at our Charge Conference at 3:00 PM at Memorial UMC. On week four we will consider “What if…we seek God first?” We will conclude the month considering “What if…we do something extraordinary?” At that time we will have the opportunity to commit to partnering with God’s church in bringing to reality the amazing and glorious things that our “What if?” questions will accomplish as we join God in making disciples of Jesus Christ for the Transformation of the World.