"Breathing Shalom into Mammon... the NEXT STEPS!"
Last Sunday, I shared a message that hit closer to (my) home than I had anticipated. If I face it, I'm a product of this world's culture. The result is an unhealthy relationship with things and money -- to the point that it's categorically abusive. Unfortunately, I hit rock bottom in that relationship and I had to face the music the hard way.
Maybe you're not entirely in the same situation as I was, but you can feel a tension in your relationship with things and money... a lack of shalom (peace). I shared three ways to get back onto the road to financial and material restoration:
1) Address the Heart Issue.
It's a tough thing to do, but at Restoration Church, we're trying to simplify this for everyone. We call it a "Jesus-centered Way of Life." Five simple rhythms that we believe are key indicators of restoration happening in us. For more on that, click here: http://restoration.church/our-way-of-life/ACTION STEP
: Join a Restoration Community Group near you to unpack this more! http://restoration.church/community-groups/
2) Address the Health Issue.
The path to shalom in our relationship with "mammon" also means understanding our responsibility for:
To plan based on biblical values, goals, and priorities. Doing so keeps us from getting caught up in the whirlwind that is the world’s pursuit of earthly treasures (see, LUKE 12:13
-23, 1 Timothy 6:6-10)
To follow-through on our good intentions. Good intentions don’t mean much unless we follow-through with them. Godliness in our finances requires discipline (see, 1 Timothy 4:7-8)
To recognize that everything we are and have belongs to the Lord. Life is temporary. All we are and have -- our time, talents, and, certainly, our treasures -- are trusts given to us by God which we are to invest for God’s kingdom and glory (see, 1 Peter 1:17
-11; Luke 19:11
> And, even, Working:
To earn a living so that we can provide for ourselves, our families, and, importantly, for God’s work -- helping those in need, both in God’s family and outside his family.ACTION STEP
: What are you doing to take steps to celebrate recovery in your relationship with things and money? What ways are you exercising a healthy practice?
3) Invest in the Kingdom.
One of our CORE VALUES is "Gospel Generosity." We give because God gave. The gospel of grace is the greatest example of generosity. Generosity, therefore, is God’s idea and He leads by example. As the people of God, our reasonable response to His grace and generosity is to be filled with grace and generosity toward others.
Author Michael Frost said it best:
"God gave us these material and monetary gifts so that we might breathe shalom throughout the world -- to defend and protect this beautiful earth, defend the oppressed and protect the widow and the orphan, but also to announce the beautiful message that through Christ, our God reigns. He defeated sin, death, and Satan, and is offering you a relationship with him and citizenship in a brand-new world that is here and still coming!"ACTION STEP
: Invest in what God is doing in our neighborhood, communities, and world to bring about the restoration of all things. Here are a few ways:
1) Manna Food Bank.
They sponsor a program called "Smart Sacks," in which Restoration Church partners. 29,000 students in the area are eligible for FARM, but only 4,900 students (and families) are being actually reached. This is Manna's most expensive program and it needs your help! Give today: http://www.mannafood.org/community-building/donate-to-manna/
2) Compassion International.
Sponsor a child. Provide help and relief to Hurricane Matthew victims. Provide relief to survivors in Haiti. You can make a difference today. http://www.compassion.com/
3) Restoration Church.
Our mission is to join God in the restoration of all things. We're committed to being in and for the neighborhood. To accomplish this, it'll take a significant financial (and people) investment. Begin investing in the Kingdom of God by a) committing to praying for us, b) visit us and consider joining us as we join God, and c) kindly donate to enable us to carry out God's mission in Gaithersburg. Find out more, here: http://restoration.church/giving/
God is bringing restoration. He's doing that through reconciliation of our relationships with people. He's doing that through reconciliation of our relationships with things and money. Join us next week, as Pastor Rodrigo Bender shares how God is bringing restoration through JUSTICE!
God's got a restoration story brewing in you. Let me hear about it in the comments below. I'd love to celebrate that with you!
By God's good grace,