Rob Martin in his book When Money Goes on Mission says that “it travels in the form of financial gifts, carried along in the pockets of those who spend it on the ordinary things of life and ministry, so they can do the extraordinary things God has called them to do.” What a clear picture that is of how all of us can be part of something significant.
He goes on to remind us that “in general, money passing from one person to another is a transaction, nothing more than an exchange of something of value for something of value in return. However, unlike everyday financial transactions, when ministries fundraise and Christians give for the mission of sharing Christ, the true value is eternal, not temporal. The gift is given to encourage a transformative act, a loving action of the gospel, where good gets down to work at the very furthest extension of mission, darkness is penetrated, and those around the world created in His image are delivered from deprivation, injustice, loneliness, and the grip of Satan.”
I don’t know about you, but I want to be part of the expansion of the Kingdom of God here and now. The goal is not to live the American Dream today and go to Heaven someday. The goal is to become all that God created us to be now and to help others find that wholeness that comes through Christ’s transformative power. I am personally returning a portion of what God has blessed me with to support as a first obligation, our local Eastview congregation, then globally, the very significant church planting movement called North India Christian Mission and community wise, the local work of Stability First. I would also like to encourage each of you to think through what you are doing with what God has blessed you with. Together we could really make a Kingdom impact.
Allow me to share a few thoughts on Mothers that were shared by others that will go un-named.☺ First a twist on a famous line; “The hand that rocks the cradle usually is attached to someone who isn’t getting enough sleep.” Another good one was, “I’d like to be the ideal mother, but I’m too busy raising my kids.”
You probably heard the one about the teacher who gave her class of 2nd graders a lesson on the magnet and what it does. The next day in a written test, she included this question: “My full name has six letters. The first one is M. I pick up things. What am I?” When the test papers were turned in, the teacher was astonished to find that almost half of the students answered the question with the word Mother.
In normal cases, the acts of mothers point to the truth that we were made in the image of God and the sacrificial nature of mothers for their families reflects the sacrificial love God has for the world. The Bible tells us that we are to honor our mothers and the Bible is also very clear in referencing the importance of motherhood and the many acts that mothers perform daily for their children and their families. These actions need to be acknowledged and honored by others so that mothers will be encouraged to press on in their God given roles. E.W. Caswell says, “The mother, more than any other, affects the moral and spiritual part of the children’s character. She is their constant companion and teacher in formative years. The child is ever imitating and assimilating the mother’s nature. It is only in after life that men gaze backward and behold how a mother’s hand and heart of love molded their young lives and shaped their destiny.”
Today we want to say in as many ways as possible that we appreciate moms and that we are grateful for their love and devotion. Let us also acknowledge that today is one of the hardest days of the year for many for many different reasons.
I agree with Abraham Lincoln who said; “No man is poor who has had a godly mother.”
To go along with the message today I would like to share with all of you a poem by Russell Kelfer entitled; You Are Who You Are
You are who you are for a reason.
You’re part of an intricate plan.
You’re a precious and perfect unique design,
Called God’s special woman or man.
You look like you look for a reason.
Our God made no mistake.
He knit you together within the womb,
You’re just what He wanted to make.
The parents you had were the ones He chose,
And no matter how you may feel,
They were custom designed with God’s plan in mind,
And they bear the Master’s seal.
No, that trauma you faced was not easy.
And God wept that it hurt you so;
But it was allowed to shape your heart
So that into his likeness you’d grow.
You are who you are for a reason,
You’ve been formed by the Master’s rod.
You are who you are, beloved,
Because there is a God!