Showing our gratitude for our blessings
By Rev. Ileana Rosario

Every morning we open our eyes to a wonderful world that was created for us! We know that God’s blessings are new every morning and that everything we have comes from his amazing love for us.

Giving back to God is part of our spiritual disciplines as Christians. It is also our vows as members of Lower UMC. Summer time with fun activities, traveling, sports and vacations, can distract us enough that we forget to give back to God in gratitude.

As members of Lower UMC we have vowed to support the church with our prayers: for the members, for our pastor and for those who we intend to reach out to in love. Prayers help us align our thoughts to God’s will in the world and remind us of his amazing love.

We have vowed to support our church with our presence in worship and the different events we hold together as a church. Our presence in worship is an easy way to show our love and encourage others in their struggles. Our positive joyful presence is a gift to others. When we relate with other members in love, grace abounds, miracle happens and faith is restored!

We have vowed to support our church with our monetary gifts, our tithes and sacrificial giving in order to support the vision of our church and grow in numbers, in spirit and in love. Our giving is an investment in God’s Kingdom that multiplies and achieves what God intends for this community. Our giving is “an acceptable sacrifice that pleases God” according to Philippians 4:18. We give trusting that God in his mercy will meet our every need according to his reaches in glory.

We have vowed to support our church with our service, following Jesus’ example as he washed his disciples’ feet. “Do you know what I have done for you?” Jesus said, “I have given you an example: just as I have done, you also must do. Since you know these things, you will be happy if you do them” John 13:12-17. We serve because it makes us happy! Service turns our heart around from focusing on our own needs and fears and allows us to see others in love, the way God sees them.

We have vowed to support our church with our witness, to proclaim Jesus good news to the world like in Pentecost where people were amazed when they “hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues” Acts 2. We believe we are chosen people so that we may “declare the praises of him who called us out of darkness into his wonderful light”. We proclaim and declare God’s love wherever we go!

Enjoy your summer, but remember to give back to God who blesses you every day with your prayers, your presence, your giving, your service and your witness. We know these things, but we will be happy if we do them!