12th/13th August, 2017
This was the Gospel Reading of a couple of Sunday’s ago and most apt for this weekend’s sign up day as you generously gift your considered weekly contribution supporting your Church, parish and priests.
An exercise in evaluating in the course of time, that which you deem as most valuable to you does not change. As we grow, both up and in the world and more importantly, in God, our perception of what is truly valuable in this world, changes. Values change for almost everything – the cost of houses have spiralled, the cost of TV’s in many cases are more affordable etc. But certainly, there is one treasure, that has never lost its true value. In the thousands of years since it was given, it has never lost its value, it has never lost its appeal. It has not become dull, it is not corroded, it has not fallen away. The ultimate treasure, the ultimate gift that is given, that is the gift of grace given freely by our triune God. The gift of relationship, the gift of eternal life in God through Jesus Christ.
Professor Ken Blanchard, once speaking about the very notion of possessions and all material wealth spoke of it, as being on loan from God. There is nothing that we can fully possess, nothing that we can fully own, all is on loan from God.
Of our possessions of our money through this planned giving programme we are reminded of God’s goodness to us and of God’s invitation for us to share that which we can as gift to his church for the building up of God’s kingdom. Every one comes to Jesus with some gift and with some ability. Just as a scholar does not give up his scholarship but as a Christian he/she uses it for Christ. So also a business person need not give up their business; but rather, run it as a Christian person would.
It becomes obvious that it is giving that we receive. Jesus did not come to empty life but to fill it, not to impoverish life but to enrich it. So Jesus is telling us not to abandon our gifts, but to use them even more wonderfully in the light of the knowledge which he has given them to you. My appeal is that you will open your heart to a sacrificial giving, a considered weekly amount supporting your Cathedral Parish in its work for the next few years helping build the kingdom of God with the values of the love of Christ. A big thank you for your generosity, your love and support. “Giving is not a duty or a chore. Rather it is a response because we are loved, to the love we have been given. The challenge is to discover joy and happiness in being loved and in loving and in giving.
“If it dies it yields a rich harvest”. God’s blessings on you all – God will reward you.