Beyond the Gospels: Corinthians

Today’s Reading: 2 Corinthians 8:16-24
(Click on the link to read today’s verses.)

For we are taking pains to do what is right, not only in the eyes of the Lord but also in the eyes of man.–vs. 21

Imagine Paul at this point. An offering has been collected and now they must make decisions about what to do with it. This is no easy task. Money sometimes brings out the worst in us. He assures them they are taking pains to do what is right… for God… for man. The two don’t always agree, and church leaders often have the hard task of making decisions and setting priorities for the whole body. It can be a struggle even to the point of pain.

This reminds me of two things. The first learned after many years of ministry. I’ve seen lean years when ministry dollars had to be cut, and it was painful. There is nothing easy about looking at your budget for the year and trying to discern what to go forward with and what to leave behind. I’ve shed tears over it, and worried about how it would effect those involved. The years have convinced me of one thing. If it is the right thing for God and man, He will provide. He’s proven it time and time again.

The second is a reminder to pray for those who are in leadership at our church. The sisters and brothers in Christ who have accepted the call to leadership roles that make decisions on behalf of the body of Christ. Let us lift them up in prayer today. May they be rooted and grounded in God’s love as they take pain to do what is right… for God… for us.

Father God, today I pray for those making financial decisions
for Your church. I pray first and foremost, they remember
it is Your church. Second, I ask You to remind them
to seek Your wisdom and discernment.
In turn, help me to honor those who have taken leadership positions
at FUMC, Jacksonville and respect the decisions they make.

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