“The point is this: the one who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and the one who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. Each of you must give as you have made up your mind, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.

And God is able to provide you with every blessing in abundance, so that by always having enough of everything, you may share abundantly in every good work.

II Corinthians 9

In his wonderful and thoughtful sermon in October, David Beecher had occasion to reference this passage from Paul’s Second Letter to the Corinthians.

We are often struck by the apostle’s words on the blessing of a ‘cheerful giver,’ one who does not give out of obligation but out of a sense of gratitude for what God has provided to us. What we sometimes miss is
the post-script – the claim that in acknowledging the abundance of God’s blessing, we will then find the resources ‘to share in every good work.’

Stewardship season is indeed upon us, and it can never be said enough or sufficiently that we are deeply grateful for the generosity each of you show in your support for the life and ministry of First Congregational Church.

Stewardship can seem focused largely on our financial contributions to our church, but it is always more than that. It is a time to imagine the full range of our gifts; and how they all combine and blend to add richness to our life together at First Church.

And every gift matters. No matter how small we might judge our own gifts to be at times, God will make something of every offering, every gift, every kind word, every effort to bring joy, comfort or peace to a person’s heart or the world around us.

In a way, Stewardship is nothing more than the season in which we celebrate this reality. Again, my thanks to you all for the gifts to bring to our shared life, and blessings on this season of thanksgiving.