Defined by Generosity

One person gives freely, yet gains even more; another withholds unduly, but comes to poverty.
A generous person will prosper; whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.
Proverbs 11:24-25 TNIV
Dear Friends in Christ,
This will be the last letter I write on an “annual stewardship church campaign” for a church’s operating budget. My upcoming retirement has me experiencing lots of “last time” events as I journey through the year. For our entire marriage, Cara and I have been faithful in our tithing to our Lord in the local church setting. Our full tithe (10% of our gross income) has always been given to the local church where we work, fellowship, worship, and grow.  This will be the fifth time in my career when we will pledge a half-year support, knowing we will be planting and tithing in a new church come July of 2024. At that time, our “Prayers, Presence, Gifts, Service, and Witness” will be planted in a different church family as we continue our discipleship story of following Jesus. Reflecting on Solomon’s wisdom from Proverbs 11, let me ask you this question:

What defines your financial life? Would it be Giving or withholding? Generosity or scarcity? All in, or waiting to see? Solomon said each of these life orientations has its own set of outcomes and implications. It is clear that our lives are defined by what we end up doing with our TIME, TALENTS, TEASURES, TESTIMONIES and RELATIONSHIPS. Each of these dimensions of our lives have been created by God and intended for our conversion and completion by focusing and engaging our lives “…on things above, not on earthly things” (Colossians 3:2).

This fall, God is asking us to renew our commitment to being a family in ministry together!  One of the ways we share as a family is through our financial investment in kingdom ministry that God is doing through Oak Harbor First United Methodist Church. Every day, God challenges His people with the opportunities to be dedicated to “FIRST FRUITS” living as we respond to the claims of God on our lives and learn more about “excelling in this grace of giving” (2 Cor. 8:7).

To be decisive and committed in giving our FIRST and BEST to God with a spirit of gratefulness and cheerfulness is how God calls us to live.  Please join me in filling out your 2024 Commitment Card as an act of faith and bring it with you to our worship service on Sunday, December 3rd for dedication unto God.  a pledge card is not a legal contract, but a spiritual indication of what you believe God is calling you to do to support our church financially in 2024. Your clarity is an important gift; a metric to help our Finance team and Church Council adopt an accurate budget for the coming year of ministry.

May God challenge us and stretch us all in our faith and discipleship. Do not let this church languish as we await the UM General Conference decision in May of 2024. “I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthains 6:2). As long as it is called “today,” and as long as you are here in this family, please be “ALL IN” with your whole-life stewardship!

To God Alone Be the Glory!

Pastor David 😊

Watch this Igniter Media one-minute video:
“Why We Give?”  -

No Comments





no categories


no tags