Oh God, our help in ages past and our hope for years to come, I voice today the gratitude of this congregation, which has been blessed by Your presence, challenged by Your Great Commission, and supported by Your daily guidance in good times and in bad.
While we often struggle and are anxious about today and tomorrow, we know in our hearts that You are with us, blessing us with bounty that most people in our world cannot begin to envision, yet always comforting us by Your presence in good times and in bad.
We ask again today the question raised by the hymn writer, “What can I give to Jesus who gave His life for me?” While we are about to give our tithes and our offerings, we are reminded by the hymn writer that these tithes and offerings are but symbols of greater gifts of ourselves: our hearts, our minds, our time—each and all are aspects of offerings. May we not just put coins and bills in the offering plate, but may we offer our hearts, our minds, and our time to You in deep devotion, because without these, our monetary contributions are more like a payoff than a sincere and dedicated gift. But the vision of our gifts is not just between You, our God, and each of us. It represents a vision of a sinful and needy world that needs Your presence and Your hope. May our gifts become a channel of hope for all who stand in need of You and of the abundant life You offer all.