God was able to provide
Parishioner Susanna Guffey looked forward to making a big leap on Consecration Sunday last year – until she lost her job. Her faith compelled her make a commitment despite her fear and sadness, and by doing so she found herself drawn even more deeply into her relationship with God and her church family. Read on...
I am looking forward to Consecration Sunday. Maybe some of you are, as a time of community and committing yourself to our church. For some of you, maybe the thought of next Sunday fills you some unease or even a sense of dread. I get that.
The buildup to last year’s Consecration Sunday started off very well for me. Growing up as the daughter of clergy, I was intimately aware of the good works our pledges do for a church. As a member of the stewardship committee, I eagerly placed phone calls – maybe to some of you in this room – encouraging you to sign up for a meal and join us for last year’s event. I myself was prayerfully considering what God wanted me to give in 2016. I love St. James', I had been coming for three years, and I felt strongly about the mission of this church and that I wanted to continue to contribute and be an active part of this church home. I knew I wanted to give more than I had the last year.
Then, two days before Consecration Sunday, I lost my job. Suddenly, I felt myself dreading to come to this service and joining in a meal I had once looked forward to. I was feeling lost, anxious, and sad – and the last thing I wanted to do was come into this space and think about money, my income (or now lack thereof) and what to give away that I didn’t have at the time.
With the help of some of my fellow St. Jamesians, I made it here and sat in the pew and found myself making the pledge that I had decided on before my work status had changed. I went to the meal following and felt myself thoroughly wrapped up in the warmth of God’s love through all of your presence. I was able to rely on my faith and trust in God and the support of this church family to get through the difficult days and weeks that would follow.
God was able to provide in my life. I found myself with a new job and new opportunities and I’ve seen God working immensely in my life this past year. By sticking to my pledge, I was able to stay involved, which left me open to whatever God had in store for my life. A pledge is more than just giving money to the church, it is pledging yourself to be a part of this family in Christ – a family where we are all welcome and well-loved.