• ELCA Stewardship: Web and DVD resources, including sermon starters, Bible studies, and ideas for children’s activities and congregational events. For more information, contact the ELCA stewardship office, 8765 W. Higgins Road, Chicago, IL 60631; 800-638-3522.
• Passing the Plate: Why American Christians Don’t Give Away More Money by Christian Smith, Michael O. Emerson and Patricia Snell (Oxford University Press, 2008).
• The Stewardship of Life Institute: An independent project out of the Lutheran Seminary at Gettysburg (Pa.), offers stewardship resources, sermons, links and more.
The Bible has good advice for people who are facing tough economic times. Here are four messages of Scripture that may be more pertinent to our lives now than ever.
Be confident! God will provide. Our first impulse may be to worry about our lives and future, but there is no need for anxiety. Jesus reminds us that God feeds the birds and clothes the fields with beautiful flowers. So also, God will provide for us (Matthew 6:25-33). Our future is in the hands of a God who loves us. “Do not worry about tomorrow,” Jesus says (Matthew 6:34). “Do not worry about anything,” Paul adds, but “with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God” (Philippians 4:6).
At First English Lutheran Church, Wheeling, W.Va., they show how to be generous even during tough economic times. Members use their multimillion endowment to support youth, campus ministry and other mission work (see "A crisis & faith").
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