Grace Notes in the Desert

Grace Notes in the Desert is written for the saints of Rio Grande Presbyterian Church and the surrounding community.

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Grace Notes acknowledges we need God's grace and forgivness as much as the desert water.



Go, sell what you own; and give the money to the poor,
and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me
-Mark 10: 21

November is, traditionally, the month of stewardship when the Church asks: “What greater good could we accomplish with our time, our resources, our gifts, our money?” And, “What am I willing to do for love of God and love of neighbor?”

As one Christian writer put it:

Stewardship is an expression of gratitude to God. It reminds us that we are the administrators, not the owners, of our assets. (To give) fills a need deep within each of us to worship God, to thank God for the abundant blessings showered upon us, and to share with others a portion of God’s blessing…”

Could this be why the rich young man in Mark’s Gospel was “…shocked and went away grieving” when Jesus said: “Go, sell what you have, give the money to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven…” because he couldn’t imagine any greater treasure than the one he already owned, those possessions (possessing him) that he loved more than Jesus?

Of course, the love of money isn’t the only thing that might be standing in our way of the real treasures God wants to share with us. What other ‘things’ might we be standing in our way? Are we willing to lay aside, these, as well, for love of God and love of neighbor?

It’s a question that reminds me of the last scene from the film, based on a true story, Schindler’s List. In it, a wealthy factory owner, Oskar Schindler, has spent his wealth and resources to save 1,100 Jews in Nazi Germany from concentration camps by employing them in his factory; yet, by movie’s end, he still isn’t satisfied with what he’s done, and looking at the gold ring on his finger, asks: “Could I have done more? I could have given more. If I made more money. I threw so much money away, you have no idea…I didn’t do enough. With this one (ring), I could have saved more lives…”

As we think about stewardship, let’s ask ourselves: “What more am I willing to do—in this place, Rio Grande Presbyterian Church, in this time, the time God’s given, with the resources, gifts and money God’s entrusted to us—for love of God and love of neighbor?”

Yours in Christ