Centerport United Methodist Church
            The Pastors' messages comes from the November issue of our monthly church newsletter - The Focus.

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AS SIMPLE AS ONE, TWO THREE
You may very well remember the financial crisis of the American car companies several years back. The “Big Three” – Ford, GM, and Chrysler - were on the verge of financial collapse until the federal government stepped in to bail them out.

You may also remember the debate over the wisdom of the bailout. Some argued that the companies should be allowed to fail the way others do when faced with bankruptcy. Others said that failure of the Big Three would have devastating consequences on the U.S. and global economy and lead to the loss of too many jobs. No matter how you feel on the subject (I was personally in favor of saving those jobs), you would have to agree that the demise of the Big Three would have shaken things up in this country. Even the prospect was somewhat traumatic.

We Christians have a different “Big Three” to think about. It’s called the Holy Trinity, and it is far more reliable than car companies or anything else we’ve come up with. In fact, it’s eternal. No bailouts, no rescue packages, no political maneuvering is needed. Just faith in a God who is expressed in a three-fold way as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

As Christians, we love to think in threes. So it’s no wonder that we’ve come up with a Trinitarian approach to Stewardship. Our Commitment Campaign each year focuses on three important aspects of giving: Time, Talents, and Treasures.
Like our understanding of God, it is a holistic
approach to stewardship—three aspects of the same
central concept.
Time—We’ve all got it. We complain about
never having enough time to do all that we want.
But there is time to do what we can. It’s really a
question of our priorities. Is God important
enough in my life to set aside some of my
precious minutes or hours to worship or to

serve? My belief is that we all have time to do
something for God and/or the church if we want
to. It’s just a question of choosing to do it.
Talents—This is a truly gifted congregation. And
I’m not just talking about singers or builders or
computer experts. Every person in our church is
gifted by God with something to share for the
benefit of someone else, whether it’s cooking a
meal, visiting a friend, clearing a lot, serving on a
committee, or one of the many other talents. The
opportunities, and the needs, are endless.
Treasures—Times are tough for a lot of us.
Money is tight; expenses are increasing. But to be
honest, we’re still pretty rich. Most of us have
some discretionary income to spend on things of
importance to us. We put our money where our
values are. People of faith place a high value on
God, who has really given us everything to begin
with.
By these measures, our church has a pretty good
hold on the Stewardship Trinity. We have a devoted,
giving, multi-talented congregation full of folks who
share their three-fold resources in deeply faithful
ways.
I’m hoping that if you are one of those good
stewards and that you will pray and ask God to help
you offer even more. If you haven’t yet taken the
step into the Trinity of Giving, I want to urge you to
make a move in that direction. You will find there a
surprising ability to give far more than you thought
you could and a God who never stops giving to you.
We all have been given much to build our lives upon,
so many blessings to enjoy. Organizing ourselves on
the basis of what we can give in return multiplies that
feeling of blessedness. Thankfully, that’s something
we can all do. It’s really as simple as one, two, three.

AS SIMPLE AS ONE, TWO THREE
You may very well remember the financial crisis of
the American car companies several years back. The
“Big Three” – Ford, GM, and Chrysler - were on the
verge of financial collapse until the federal
government stepped in to bail them out.
You may also remember the debate over the wisdom
of the bailout. Some argued that the companies
should be allowed to fail the way others do when
faced with bankruptcy. Others said that failure of the
Big Three would have devastating consequences on
the U.S. and global economy and lead to the loss of
too many jobs.
No matter how you feel on the subject (I was
personally in favor of saving those jobs), you would
have to agree that the demise of the Big Three would
have shaken things up in this country. Even the
prospect was somewhat traumatic.
We Christians have a different “Big Three” to think
about. It’s called the Holy Trinity, and it is far more
reliable than car companies or anything else we’ve
come up with. In fact, it’s eternal. No bailouts, no
rescue packages, no political maneuvering is needed.
Just faith in a God who is expressed in a three-fold
way as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
As Christians, we love to think in threes. So it’s no
wonder that we’ve come up with a Trinitarian
approach to Stewardship. Our Commitment
Campaign each year focuses on three important
aspects of giving: Time, Talents, and Treasures.
Like our understanding of God, it is a holistic
approach to stewardship—three aspects of the same
central concept.
Time—We’ve all got it. We complain about
never having enough time to do all that we want.
But there is time to do what we can. It’s really a
question of our priorities. Is God important
enough in my life to set aside some of my
precious minutes or hours to worship or to
serve? My belief is that we all have time to do
something for God and/or the church if we want
to. It’s just a question of choosing to do it.
Talents—This is a truly gifted congregation. And
I’m not just talking about singers or builders or
computer experts. Every person in our church is
gifted by God with something to share for the
benefit of someone else, whether it’s cooking a
meal, visiting a friend, clearing a lot, serving on a
committee, or one of the many other talents. The
opportunities, and the needs, are endless.
Treasures—Times are tough for a lot of us.
Money is tight; expenses are increasing. But to be
honest, we’re still pretty rich. Most of us have
some discretionary income to spend on things of
importance to us. We put our money where our
values are. People of faith place a high value on
God, who has really given us everything to begin
with.
By these measures, our church has a pretty good
hold on the Stewardship Trinity. We have a devoted,
giving, multi-talented congregation full of folks who
share their three-fold resources in deeply faithful
ways.
I’m hoping that if you are one of those good
stewards and that you will pray and ask God to help
you offer even more. If you haven’t yet taken the
step into the Trinity of Giving, I want to urge you to
make a move in that direction. You will find there a
surprising ability to give far more than you thought
you could and a God who never stops giving to you.
We all have been given much to build our lives upon,
so many blessings to enjoy. Organizing ourselves on
the basis of what we can give in return multiplies that
feeling of blessedness. Thankfully, that’s something
we can all do. It’s really as simple as one, two, three.



Pastor Roy


 

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SOCIAL JUSTICE - SO, WHAT CAN I DO?

 

 

Continue the dialogue. For now, one thing you can do is share your thoughts and feelings about what is happening. Talk to your family, your neighbors, fellow church members, and friends about what is going on in our society. What does Scripture say? What is our call?

 

 

You ca Learn more. A few resources are listed here: http://www.racialequitytools.org/resourcefiles/ERASE_Racism-long-island-district-facts.pdf.

 

 

https://msw.usc.edu/mswusc-blog/diversity-workshop-guide-to-discussing-identity-power-and-privilege/.

 

 

McIntosh, Peggy. “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack.” Independent School 49, no. 2 (1990): 31-35. https://www.racialequitytools.org/resourcefiles/mcintosh.pdf

 

 

3 ½ Minutes 10 Bullets, Marc Silver, dir. (2015). http://www.takepart.com/three-and-a-half -minutes-ten-bullets.

 

 

http://www.indigenouspeople.net/blackwht.htm.

 

 

Glaude Jr., Eddie J. Democracy in Black: How Race Still Enslaves the American Soul. New York: Crown Publishing Group, 2016.

 

 

O’Neil, Cathy, Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy. New York: Crown Publishers, 2016.

 

 

Wilson-Hartgrove, Jonathon. Reconstructing the Gospel: Finding Freedom from Slaveholder Religion. Westmont, IL: Inter-Varsity Press, 2018.

 

 

Join our efforts to eradicate racism. Our church is working to join groups and find more resources in our community to continue the efforts to listen, learn, connect, and take action. Stay tuned for more information to come.

 


Continue the dialogue. For now, one thing you can do is share your thoughts and feelings about what is
happening. Talk to your family, your neighbors, fellow church members, and friends about what is going on in
our society. What does Scripture say? What is our call?
You can learn more. A few resources are listed here:
http://www.racialequitytools.org/resourcefiles/ERASE_Racism-long-island-district-facts.pdf.
https://msw.usc.edu/mswusc-blog/diversity-workshop-guide-to-discussing-identity-power-and-
privilege/.
McIntosh, Peggy. “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack.” Independent
School 49, no. 2 (1990): 31-35.
https://www.racialequitytools.org/resourcefiles/mcintosh.pdf
3 1⁄2 Minutes 10 Bullets, Marc Silver, dir. (2015). http://www.takepart.com/three-and-a-half-minutes-
ten-bullets.
http://www.indigenouspeople.net/blackwht.htm.
Glaude Jr., Eddie J. Democracy in Black: How Race Still Enslaves the American Soul. New York: Crown
Publishing Group, 2016.
O’Neil, Cathy, Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality
and Threatens Democracy. New York: Crown Publishers, 2016.
Wilson-Hartgrove, Jonathon. Reconstructing the Gospel: Finding Freedom from Slaveholder Religion.
Westmont, IL: Inter-Varsity Press, 2018.
Join our efforts to eradicate racism. Our church is working to join groups and find more resources in our
SO, WHAT CAN I DO?
Continue the dialogue. For now, one thing you can do is share your thoughts and feelings about what is
happening. Talk to your family, your neighbors, fellow church members, and friends about what is going on in
our society. What does Scripture say? What is our call?
You can learn more. A few resources are listed here:
http://www.racialequitytools.org/resourcefiles/ERASE_Racism-long-island-district-facts.pdf.
https://msw.usc.edu/mswusc-blog/diversity-workshop-guide-to-discussing-identity-power-and-
privilege/.
McIntosh, Peggy. “White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack.” Independent
School 49, no. 2 (1990): 31-35.
https://www.racialequitytools.org/resourcefiles/mcintosh.pdf
3 1⁄2 Minutes 10 Bullets, Marc Silver, dir. (2015). http://www.takepart.com/three-and-a-half-minutes-
ten-bullets.
http://www.indigenouspeople.net/blackwht.htm.
Glaude Jr., Eddie J. Democracy in Black: How Race Still Enslaves the American Soul. New York: Crown
Publishing Group, 2016.
O’Neil, Cathy, Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality
and Threatens Democracy. New York: Crown Publishers, 2016.
Wilson-Hartgrove, Jonathon. Reconstructing the Gospel: Finding Freedom from Slaveholder Religion.
Westmont, IL: Inter-Varsity Press, 2018.
Join our efforts to eradicate racism. Our church is working to join groups and find more resources in our
community to continue the efforts to listen, learn, connect, and take action. Stay tuned for more information
to come