During the 2014 Super Bowl, Pepsi ran a commercial showing the imagined origin of football’s halftime. Two weary old time football teams lined up for a play when a car full of young women drove up asking for help. They offer the players a bribe of ice cold Pepsi, and the tired young men decide to take a break. Later they decide to call this new tradition “Halftime.” Here’s a link if you want to see it.
Perhaps Christians sometimes think of the offering as a break in the action and not a part of worship. But in our faith heritage, the offering is central to worshiping God. It’s never a sideshow – it is the show. Our Methodist founder, John Wesley, taught people to understand our relationship with money on very simple terms – Earn, Save, Give.
That’s the focus of our 2019 Stewardship effort and our worship series from mid-October to mid-November. Earn. Save. Give. This series will glean wisdom from Methodist founder John Wesley and retired elder James Harnish. At the end of this series, we will receive our new pledge commitments at worship on November 11.
To be right upfront about this, we are asking the members of our church community to significantly increase their giving to Cross Winds. This is needed to support our congregation and continue our mission in the community. Our church is very careful with money and manages its budget wisely. But over the last few years a handful of Cross Winds strong supporters have relocated because of job changes or retirement. Others have answered the call to help start new churches. A few are no longer with us because of death. And new giving has not replaced these gifts. These events are not unique to Cross Winds – they happen to every church. And when they happen, that’s the time when church members step up to the challenge of growing in their giving. So we will be encouraging you to “step up” by giving a greater portion of your income in the coming year.
During this worship series you’ll be hearing stories from many Cross Winds’ partners about how they and their families have been touched by the church. Others will share how they have been able to joyfully support Cross Winds. So watch for information coming to you about “Earn. Save. Give.” In a variety of ways, including worship, email, letters, etc. we will be sharing great stories and advice about money.
The offering is not halftime, it’s the very center of worship, where we cease being spectators and participate in the ministry of Jesus Christ today.
Thank you for loving your church and faithfully supporting Cross Winds.