Rustlings (October 9, 2017)

It’s one of those things that make you tense up. Just the sight of it can cause a knot in your tummy and an increase in your pulse. Your mind immediately starts racing. You start looking for reasons. You start looking for solutions. I saw it this past Thursday. The ‘tire pressure warning light’ lit up on my car dashboard.

I was in the middle of nowhere between Greenville and Athens, GA, on my way to Macon, GA. When the warning light began to flash, I immediately began looking for a place to pull over. Since the car was not pulling, shimmying or making any funny noises (my best auto mechanic lingo), I drove for almost five miles before finding a service station. As it turns out, the slight shift in weather affected the air pressure and all was fine. The warning light turned itself off. I traveled on…

It’s one of those things that make you tense up. It can put a knot in your tummy and a slight increase in your pulse. Your mind starts racing to ascertain causes and solutions. Okay, maybe this is just what happens to me. Our tithes and offerings for 2017 have been outstanding. From January to August, we were steady and faithful in our support of the church, her ministries and her mission endeavors. In September, however, our giving dropped significantly. Causes? We always have at least one weak month each year, and this was it…or people gave so generously during the summer (with no typical summer dip) that they decided to ‘dip’ in September… or everyone is saving up to make extremely generous offerings during the last quarter of the year… or monies were funneled to hurricane relief and other worthy causes… or… it’s just the weather, and there’s no need to be concerned.

I’ve always trusted God’s people to make generosity a part of the fabric of their faith. I know – because I’ve witnessed it – that generosity is at the very core of First Baptist’s faith. Let’s practice generosity the last three months of this year. Catch up on your tithes and offerings. Make an additional gift as a symbol of thanksgiving to God for God’s blessings in your life. I have no doubt the warning light will turn itself off.

— Jim