“Seek ye first the Kingdom of God, and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you” Matthew 6:33
Jesus taught that the Kingdom of God includes all aspects of life; our relationship to God and each other, our relationship to creation, our relationship to ourselves, our souls and bodies and our relationship to all that we possess. In short, Jesus is to be Lord of all that we are and all that we have. Yes, the Reign of Christ should extend even to our finances.
Although some think that our spiritual and material selves should occupy two distinct spheres of existence, there is no such duality for the Christian - all is part of a believer’s accounting before God. Jesus, throughout his earthly ministry, taught more about our relationship to our possessions than he taught about any other subject. Perhaps this is because Jesus was aware of how possessions have the power to possess and captivate us and reorient and repurpose our lives away from God’s reign.
The call to the Christian life means putting Jesus first as Lord of all in our lives, and giving God what is right rather than what is left. The gospel reorders our social priority in challenging us to love people and use things ~ not the other way around as is so common in the word in which we live. While our culture implies that the road to becoming more fully human involves developing one’s own selfishness, the gospel challenges us to become more fully human by developing our capacity to love. When we seek to love as Jesus loves, we become people of vision who move beyond fear and anxiety, toward mercy and generosity.
In seeking first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness, we lay claim to the promise that all these other “things” will be added to us. So, at Christ Church, as we seek to develop mature, generous followers of Jesus we are confident that the resources we need for our mission will be more than provided for.
We have had a grace filled year in the fulfillment of our mission and ministry. Many have said that although we have been distant physically, they have grown closer in fellowship at Christ Church through our on-line ministry. We have been given the grace, in these challenging days, to minister to hurting people among us, in our neighbourhood, across our city and around our world. While we have been able to do these things, God has provided for us abundantly as we have reached out.
This harvest we have so much to be thankful for; for all the blessings of our lives, for health in a time of pandemic, resources in a time of scarcity, friends and family in a time of isolation and faith in a time of fear. While the exact extent of these blessings vary according to our own situations, most of us have many, if not all, of these.
This year, as we give thanks for the harvest of the land, let’s also give thanks for the harvest that God has given us in the nurture and care of souls at Christ Church. Let’s give thanks for the abundant blessings that are ours when we seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness, knowing that all of what we need will be added to us as well.