|Ministry Musings are also included on the latest pewsheet|
is the season of richness – the vibrant colours of late garden flowers, the
beautiful changing colours of autumn leaves, the bounty of the harvest, fruit
and vegetables that we often use to display in our churches at Harvest Festival.
And then there’s the fun of making jams and pickles!
As we ponder on the beauty of all that our Creator God has provided for us, it draws us deeper, to see the depth of love that is in His heart that goes much further than caring for our physical needs.
Psalm 103 comes to mind – “Praise the Lord, O my soul and forget not all His benefits”. Throughout this psalm David reveals to us why we should praise the Lord with all of our being:
“The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger.” He doesn’t dish out punishments to us when we make a mess of things in our lives. As we come to Him, through Jesus Christ, He removes our sins – verse 12 says He removes them as far as the east is from the west. And Isaiah declares in chapter 43 that “He will remember them no more”.
Why? Because we are precious and loved deeply by Him. That’s why, in the person of Jesus, He came to deal with the problem of our sin.
The Almighty God, our Creator, cares deeply about you and me. That should both comfort and challenge us. He cares about every aspect of our lives. He cares about everything that happens to us, how we are treated and how we feel. But He also cares about how we treat others.
In our culture today, the temptation to assimilate the world’s attitudes around us is great. It happens almost without realising it, and we get drawn in.
Among other things there is the temptation to succumb to excesses of all kinds when many are living in poverty. Of course there’s nothing wrong with wealth or possessions – but it all depends on how we hold on to them.
In the sermon on the mount, Jesus said don’t allow them to dominate our thoughts and take the pre-eminence. For instance – when we go shopping it’s a good idea to think before we buy – do we need it or simply want it? Is it a need or a want?
At the end of the day it comes down to who is in control of our finances. And if it’s God then we can trust Him to direct us.
The WWJD slogan (what would Jesus do?) is very relevant for us all.
God wants us to think generously in sharing, not only the love of Christ spiritually, but also practically, as we go about our daily lives.
As His children, all that God has is ours- we are children of the King of kings. And as we offer back all that we have to Him, He will use it not only to bring glory to His name and bless others, but to mightily bless us as well.
In the Old Testament book of Malachi God says “test me in this – and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room for it”.
What a wonderful, compassionate, generous God we have!