If I did not have faith, I do not know how I would have survived the most difficult time in my life.
My husband, George, had lost his independence due to rapidly progressing physical ailments, and I was unable to provide the care he needed. I knew I had to lean into the mercy of the Lord, so I would take walks and talk with God about what I should do. I didn’t know the outcome, but I knew we were in His hands. George peacefully passed away in December of 2013 in the comfort of our home and the presence of his family and the Lord.
After George passed, I decided to move back to Dallas from Waxahachie and to say ‘yes’ to whatever came along. I knew if it were the wrong thing, God would make it clear to me. For years, I’ve volunteered and raised money for my alma mater, North Dallas High School. In fact, that’s also how I knew about and started attending Church of the Incarnation. Through the outreach ministries, I became involved with anything to do with the high school and its feeder schools.
Taking heed to Bishop Burton’s expectations of membership to worship regularly, get involved with a Growth Group, serve the community, and give financially, I decided it was time to give back to the place that served me and allowed me to serve.
Somewhere I came across the philosophy ‘give until it hurts.’ Giving has been an important step for me in my faith journey. My first year’s gift didn’t hurt, so the second year I increased my monthly contribution to the church. Each year since then I have looked at my budget and asked myself ‘are my bills getting paid?’; ‘am I eating three square meals a day?’ Then, I ask God to guide my giving. I have to be practical and take care of business, but these gifts are spiritual acts that have knitted me into the life of my church.
I know I have God’s unmerited favor and grace. The Lord’s Prayer teaches us to extend grace to others. No matter how small my role, it is an expansion of God’s compassion in the world. He is honored by my investment of time and gifts into the ministries of our church, and I am blessed and grateful that Incarnation has such a commitment to serve the poor.
Do you give without fear?