This turn of phrase has been a core life concept to me as long as I can remember. Loving people in Jesus name requires this viewpoint. Along these lines Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s description of the Kingdom of God has been a big inspiration for me.
“It is a kingdom stronger than war and danger, a kingdom of power and authority, signifying eternal terror and judgment to some, and eternal joy and righteousness to others, not a kingdom of the heart, but one as wide as the earth, not transitory but eternal, a kingdom that makes a way for itself and summons men to itself to prepare its way, a kingdom for which it is worth while risking our lives.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer Letters & Papers from Prison
I find this extremely clarifying. The reality of this eternal kingdom gives me reason to sacrifice so that the power of God and the love of God might move through me to others. You and I are the hands and feet of Jesus in the world. Jesus lived a sacrificial life and he calls us to this life so his living power can benefit those we love for his sake.
Last July I shared an update on our ministry funding. Delores and I found our hearts warmed by your response. Several people stepped forward with increased giving, causing us to be filled with gratitude.
The overall picture is encouraging to us. Once again the increases in donations basically offset the loses we experienced since July. Additionally, gifts given toward our end-of-year funding request helped wonderfully. Our appeal was to make up a $20,000 shortfall for 2016. The generosity expressed toward this need resulted in gifts totally $11,048. This is a great help and has allowed us to receive our full salary checks since the first of the year. Thank you for this expression of love and trust. God’s provision through you makes a real and practical difference for us — and overflows in much thanksgiving to our Heavenly Father.
I mentioned in the July letter that we planned to do some fund-raising work in the fall. We have postponed this in light of the other challenges of our current season. The reality is that we still need about $1000 per month in additional income for this to work well. Please join us in prayer in this regard.
I conclude with the words of the Apostle Paul in Philippians 4,
“Not that I seek the gift; but I seek the fruit which increases to your credit — And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus –– the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your Spirit.”
Always thanking God for you,