Wednesday, October 01, 2003

Newsletter: The Forgotten Spiritual Discipline

The market for books of spirituality has grown considerably in the last two decades. Now almost every bookstore has a growing section devoted to books on prayer, fasting and meditation. The plethora of Christian titles suggests a real spiritual hunger. People want to tune into something beyond themselves. People desire to put their faith into action. Prayer, fasting, the study of Scripture, and worship are all ways in which we respond to the grace God has given us in Jesus Christ.

However, there is another spiritual discipline which is rarely discussed. In Matthew 6, Jesus adds the giving of alms to the more familiar disciplines of prayer and fasting. The giving of our money, our time, and our talents are spiritual disciplines. Our checkbooks may unfortunately speak more about our spiritual lives than our prayer journals. We must recognize that stewardship is not something that occurs once a year. Instead, stewardship is a life in which we recognize that Christ is Lord of everything…including our hard-earned resources. In this season, I urge all of us to consider the discipline of giving--to the church, to our neighbors, and to the least among us. Likewise, we should prayerfully consider how we can get involved, in the church and in our communities. Let us together take up the discipline of giving.

Grace & Peace,