Invitation to the Offering
The offering you made last week empowered ministry within our congregation and in response to the needs of our community. It also helped support the work of ministries beyond the local church that reach people who are in desperate need to feel the touch of love and reconciliation. Through the World Service Fund, a talented group of global communicators, lead by United Methodist Communications in Nashville, Tennessee, directs messaging that reaches people who have never set foot in one of our churches. Through billboards, digital advertising, video spots, radio and more, they give people outside the church a glimpse of who we are and what matters to us as Christians. This ministry happens thanks to the generous support of United Methodists like you. I invite you once again to give generously as we worship God through the sharing of our gifts, tithes and offerings.
Learn more about the work United Methodist Communications atwww.umcom.org and www.rethinkchurch.org.
God of our deepest joys and Alleluias! We sing our Resurrection songs this morning, not because of a miraculous historical event, but because you continue to bring life out of death and hope out of despair! When you rolled away the stone and let light enter Christ's tomb, you entrusted each of us who follow him to be bearers of light into the dark places of our world – carriers of the inexhaustible hope into lives filled with despair. May the joy of this morning, of the triumph of the Resurrection, empower us in our living out of these tasks, and in our generosity to support others who serve in our name. In the name of the risen Christ, we pray. Amen. (John 20:1-18)
Saturday, April 18, 2009
Loving your neighbor, Reflection on Acts 4:32-35
Remember, no social security, no medicare, no unemployment insurance. How were people who needed help to be cared for?
Giving everything seems hard--and it seemed hard to them, too. Keep reading in this chapter.
But, back to this lesson: Luke has emphasized that discipleship to Jesus involves one's possessions. See Luke 6:20-26; 12:13-21; Acts 11:27-29, among others.
Is there a conflict between being of one heart and one mind (v.32) and having private ownership? Even if we cannot imagine common ownership, is there any way we can accept a modification of this principle?
How do you find a connection between verses 33 and 34? What is our responsibility toward the needy (v.34)? Does this responsibility leap across national borders?