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Stewardship Meditation 11/27/2022

The First Sunday of Advent

Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming (Matthew 24:42).

Our Lord’s return in glory may seem slow in coming, but as Jesus says, that is not an excuse for us to let our guard down. He encourages us to stay awake, to stay alert, for His coming may happen at any moment. We also have a tendency to put off certain things in life thinking that there will always be time to do it tomorrow, to do it later. Even though we often lament the fact that people we love are called home to glory far too soon, we still tend to put things off as long as possible. How true this is when we consider things like estate planning. No one likes to think about the end of their life, or what will happen with their worldly blessings, and yet as Jesus reminds us, the end may come when we least expect it, whether that be in death or our Lord’s coming again. Gifts of Love can help you in staying awake and ready when that time comes, having your affairs in order so that you are not a burden to your loved ones, and so that you can bless others with the blessings you have received in life. It is not prudent to sleep on such things, for Christ is coming. We know not when, but in Him we remain awake so that we may receive Him with joy!

Stewardship Meditation 11/20/2022

The Last Sunday of the Church Year

And [the criminal] said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.” And [Jesus] said to him, “Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in paradise”(Luke 23:42–43).

To be remembered by Jesus is one of the greatest blessings we have as Christians. Even when sin prevents us from remembering our Lord, He remembers us. It is His remembrance of us, along with His death and resurrection, that gives us hope of our place with Him in paradise. We are accustomed to remembering our loved ones in our will, but did you know that you can remember other charitable organizations too? Gifts of Love can help you with establishing a charitable gift plan where you can remember organizations like LWML which seek to proclaim Christ to the world. Our Gift Planning Counselors are ready to assist you with this process so that organizations that are dear to you can be supported in the next generation and beyond. Prayerfully consider remembering LWML in your gift plan as we seek to connect others to the Lord Jesus who remembers all God’s children and brings them into paradise.

Stewardship Meditation 11/13/2022

The Twenty-third Sunday after Pentecost

“As for these things that you see, the days will come when there will not be left here one stone upon another that will not be thrown down” (Luke 21:6).

As the disciples of Jesus marvel at the beauty of the earthly temple, our Lord makes it very clear that earthly things will fade away, for they are but a shadow of what is to come. It is a reminder that what we build for ourselves in this life is temporal, but our hope is built on that which is eternal. This does not mean that such temporal things are unimportant, however. What our Lord blesses us with in this life is intended for our use in supporting body and life and serving our neighbor. Thus, taking time to thoughtfully plan for what will happen with our material blessings once we have gone to our eternal rest is also important, and can be a blessing to our family. Through Gifts of Love, you can also set forth a gift plan that includes faithful charitable organizations like the LWML so that hope in Christ may be proclaimed to all nations, calling people to the joy of the permanent, eternal life in God’s kingdom. Contact one of our counselors today and learn more about how you can bless your family and Christ’s Church until He comes again.

Stewardship Meditation 11/6/2022

All Saints’ Day (observed)

“These are the ones coming out of the great tribulation. They have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (Revelation 7:14b).

Such is the glorious promise given to all the baptized saints of God. In the end, we shall be delivered out of the tribulation of a life of sin, washed in the blood of Jesus so that we stand before the Father in the robes of Christ’s righteousness. While we have this hope, there are many who are stuck in the tribulation without such hope. LWML provides numerous resources, training opportunities, and Bible studies which seek to encourage and equip women to reach out with the Gospel to those going through the great tribulation. Our hope and prayer is that they will join the saints in the eternal kingdom, coming out of the tribulation into the joy of heaven. The Gifts of Love ministry helps individuals and families consider how they might support LWML in this work for generations to come. By prayerfully considering LWML in your charitable gift plan, you can continue to point people to the hope that leads out of the great tribulation into life within God’s kingdom!

Stewardship Meditation 10/30/2022

Reformation Day (observed)

Then I saw another angel flying directly overhead, with an eternal gospel to proclaim to those who dwell on earth, to every nation and tribe and language and people (Revelation 14:6).

As we observe Reformation Day once again, it is important to remember that we are not celebrating a day or moment in time or even Martin Luther and the Lutheran Church. What we remember is a call back to the Gospel, an eternal Gospel, which has been proclaimed throughout time and space. As John says, this is an eternal Gospel intended to be proclaimed to everyone on the earth. Such is the work that the Church continues to do today, and it is the work that LWML seeks to support contributing to missions throughout the world. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is for all people, and our hope is that through ongoing support of missionaries, the eternal Gospel might be proclaimed to all who have never heard it, and to those who need to hear it again. It is in proclaiming this Gospel that reformation happens, not just of the Church, but of the hearts of people who are turned away from lives of darkness and death toward the life that Christ has won for them. Prayerfully consider support of Gifts of Love which seeks to help the LWML continue its mission for the next generation and beyond. This eternal Gospel is for all people, for it points people to our Lord and to His everlasting salvation.

Stewardship Meditation 10/23/2022

The Twentieth Sunday after Pentecost

For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted (Luke 18:14b).

What a gracious God we have! We rightly confess, like the tax collector in this story, that we are sinners and are in no way deserving of anything good. In humility each week, we confess our sins, and rather than condemnation, we are forgiven for the sake of Christ. As Jesus says, the humble are exalted. God takes the hollow shell of sinners and fills them up with His love, and then makes use of His saints in service to the kingdom, a kingdom which has eternal success. What grace! Have you taken some time to consider how God has blessed you? Have you considered how such blessings might also be used for His glory? Our Gift Planning Counselors are here to help you evaluate your blessings and see how you might put together a charitable gift plan. Such a plan might include the LWML which seeks to reach out to the sinners of the world with the love and Gospel of Christ. Your prayerful consideration of such a gift can be a witness to the grace of God at work, blessing sinners with forgiveness and exalting them with Christ to the kingdom eternally.

Stewardship Meditation 10/16/2022

The Nineteenth Sunday after Pentecost

And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? (Luke 18:7).

One of the great promises we have from our Father is that when we cry to Him, He hears us. As part of LWML’s mission to proclaim Christ, certainly we pray to our Father in heaven that He would bring His justice to bear upon those who have suffered injustice. This is not, however, a prayer that the unrighteous would finally get their due. It is a prayer that God would do as He has promised: to make right all that has gone wrong in our world. Such prayers have been answered for us in Jesus Christ who has suffered the injustice of the world upon the cross so that God’s justice would be served. Not retribution, but forgiveness and grace for sinners. By prayerfully considering a present or legacy gift to LWML through Gifts of Love, you can assist us in continuing the work of supporting those who undergo injustice, praying for them before our Father who promises to hear and to answer, and pointing them to the grace revealed to us in the cross of Jesus. We do all this knowing that in Christ, our Lord has not delayed long over us, giving us justice in Him through forgiveness and life eternal.

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