Since I no longer have a “home church”, I find myself going to a different church each week and lovin’ it. As I ‘shalom’ from coast to coast, I hop around from church to church seeking to have an experience. I know I should go to church because its the right thing to do, or because I’m committed, or because I’m a churchman…but I go somewhere each week simply to have an experience of God in worship. And I mostly do.
Today, I went to my “default” church in Morristown, NJ. LiquidChurch.com –the place I go when I’m not church hopping.
One of their tag lines is “Not your mama’s church” liquid is a place where worship band members have tattoos to let you know they have a past. Where the music is played at very high decibels on stage, under theater the lights, in a large ballroom at the Hyatt Hotel. Where the pastor is known as “big hair preacher.” Its a very cool, theologically conservative, socially active, media savvy, culturally relevant to a young, postmodern generation. Some call it an “emerging church.” I go there because I like loud music, dig the band, feel free to lift my hands and move my feet, and because I’ friends with the pastor.
Today at LiquidChurch, Pastor Tim preached on money–the second most frequent topic that Jesus talked about in the gospels. Second only to the topic of the kingdom of God.
Instead of preaching on “IN GOD WE TRUST” which is still on our currency, Pastor Tim preached on how
GOD TRUSTS YOU. Then he passed the plates and gave away $30,000 of last week’s offering!!!
He said it was God’s money entrusted to the church, and that God trusted us, individually and corporately, to invest it wisely in the work of the Kingdom. Just like in the Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25: 14-30).
As the plates were passed, we all took out some money. Some got an envelop with $50 inside. Some with $20. And some with $10.
I only got a ten dollar bill. I felt like the “wicked servant” in the parable.
Pastor Tim said that for some, it would be an answer to our prayers. For others, an opportunity to pay it forward.
Granted, Liquid is a large church in three locations with multiple services. But $30,000 is a lot of money to give away in one day!
Holding the $10 bill in my hands, I reminded myself of what I mostly believe about money:
- All the cattle on a thousand hills, all the silver and gold in the land, even all the money made on Wall Street…belongs to and comes from the hands of God Almighty, Creator of Heaven and earth.
- We are stewards, trustees, managers, of what God has given us to invest in the the kingdom of God and for the common good.
- I’m accountable for how well I manage the little or large amounts of money God has allowed me to receive.
- There is a ministry of money as wells as principles of good stewardship for the people of God.
- So now what do I do with this ten dollar bill in my hand? Pastor Tim wants us to let the church know in three weeks what we did with God’s money.
“Cast your bread upon the waters, for after many days you will find it again” (Ecclesiastes 11:1).