The Gift of the Spirit

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O God,
How right and good it is
To come to you in prayer.
Help us to be still inside ourselves
As we wait for you.
If you have a word for us;
let us hear.
If you have a vision for us;
Let us see
If you have a path for us to walk;
Give us strength that will not fail.
As Jesus gave himself to you
So we give ourselves;
For we know that in giving we receive
And in Jesus we find our way.
-Peter Short

God gives the gift of the Spirit who travels with us. When, by the light of the Risen Christ and in silent communion with God, we begin to open ourselves to more and more of God's gifts, we soon see a way – a way to follow, a way to live, a way to give. As the way becomes clearer, we are offered the gift of the Holy Spirit as our companion, guide, and strength.

The Children of Israel were guided through the wilderness, even when they believed they were lost and forgotten by God. I have never experienced a cloud or a pillar of fire, nor have I discovered a specific road map for where God wants me to go, how God wants me to live, or how much God wants me to give. However, I have known those frequent, sometimes irritating, nudges that are God's way of asking me to pay attention. Stewardship is about paying attention to God, to ourselves, to others, and all the world. God helps us to respond with a generosity that surprises and delights us with its simplicity and joy.

Guiding Spirit, show me the way. I am getting better at accepting your gift of silence. I want to follow the light of Christ and let it shine through me. I need the gift of the Spirit who travels with me. Grant me the courage, strength, and wisdom to commit to greater generosity wherever you lead me. Amen.

This stewardship story is from "The Gifts of God for the People of God" Theme Materials Starter Kit. "The Gifts of God for the People of God" theme focuses on the connection between the Eucharist and faithful stewardship. Use the Giving: Growing Faithful Stewards in Your Congregation  magazine volume 1 and the Starter Kit to create a congregational stewardship emphasis on "The Gifts of God for the People of God".

The Ecumenical Stewardship Center offers congregational stewardship resources featuring 17 different, timeless biblical themes. Peruse them all and place an order in the ESC web store.

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