First You’d Better Buy a Semi and Eight Other Stewardship Sermons
- Author: Ordained in 1951, George Haynes is a mission developer for Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Rockport, Texas. He is an ELCA Stewardship key leader.
- Updated: 09/11/2008
- Copyright: George Haynes,
P.O. Box 301,
109 Peach Tree Drive,
Rockport TX 78381
Generous, faithful, awesome. George Haynes trumpets these attributes of God in a series of stewardship sermons.
When I heard George give one of these inspiring stewardship meditations, I asked him if he would give them to me so I could post them on the Stewardship for the 21st Century Web site. "That way," I told him, "they will be globally and ecumenically available."
I was thrilled when I received the packet in the mail from this faithful and long-serving pastor and am pleased to make them available for your inspiration.
To appreciate them, you need to read them out loud with passion and conviction. Be excited about what God is doing! Proclaim loudly in many ways, "Our God is a God of abundance." God speaks through these sermons; lives are shaped and changed by them. Through them, you will encounter a living, loving, inviting, giving and grace-filled God.
(Note: The title of each excerpt below is a link to the complete sermon text.)
[Editor's note: This sermon is not about a "get rich quick scheme"; that is, a promise that if one tithes they will receive blessings in return.]
First You'd Better Buy a Semi
(Go Ahead -- Test God!)
It is God's own promise that when you do put God to the test, God will open the floodgates of heaven for you and pour out for you an overflowing blessing.
From my own experience, I am absolutely convinced that God's greatest delight consists in pouring out one blessing after another, after another, upon his children -- way beyond even the fondest of expectations."
One Incredible Trust
(We're Not Talking Peanuts Here)
God has, in fact, entrusted everything that is God's into your hands; God has taken everything that is God's -- or even associated with God -- and put it right smack dab into your hands as a trust ...
To care for it ... to manage it ... to use it ... to administer it for God!
What glory and honor God has given you; what dignity and power and opportunity God has given you ... entrusting you with the care, management, use and administration of everything that is God's.
God's Crazy Arithmetic
(Give It -- There Will be More to Give)
1 Kings 17:8-16
Trust and obedience, committing one's self to the Lord and to his word ... is the key to discovering the truth of God's promise and God's providence.
Here is God's crazy arithmetic ... that more is given by the very act of being given away!
The Great Giveaway
(What Does God Do With It?)
I Chronicles 29:10-16
When God gives, God gives abundantly; when God bestows, God bestows lavishly!
God not only deliberately calls and chooses you and me to work together with God and with each other in making God's dream come true and bringing that vision to reality ... God also entrusts to your hands and mine everything we could possibly need to get that job done -- everything we could possible need!
Give Us What We Deserve ... Not!
(Welcome to the Vineyard)
God just cannot stand that anyone should be less than what God has created them to be.
God cannot sit still so long as anyone is lost or on the "outside" ... "standing idle" in the market place, apart from God, or from God's household.
So God continually comes into the marketplace of your life ... calling you ... inviting you.
The glorious truth is that you are in the vineyard not as a hired laborer, but as the very child of God, as a member of God's own family.
By God's grace, you are called to be a steward, to be a worker together with God and with one another, bringing God's will and purposes to fulfillment. There can be no greater joy than this!
Not Just Be Careful -- Beware!
(Watch Those Attachments)
This world is not our true or permanent home. We are here as pilgrims and sojourners. We are reminded by Holy Scripture that our commonwealth is in heaven.
We are citizen/servants of God's kingdom, with a very important assignment, as we make our way through this world.
As pilgrims with purpose, our Father has given us the kingdom business to do while here.
The world and its resources are tools and means God has built into his creation, to assist us in accomplishing our mission.
Being Rich vs. Thinking You Are
(The Story of Two Farmers)
The real question is how you look upon your life and what you have -- whether you see it in terms of "I," "my," and "mine," or as a gift and a trust from God.
The real question is what you do with what has been given to you - whether you "stall" it, in your purse, bank account and personal pleasures, or whether you see yourself as one of God's stewards, with the holy obligation and happy opportunity to manage it and use it to serve and glorify God.
What Is This 'Just' Stuff?
('Only'? ... 'Only'?)
1 Corinthians 12:4-12
You have a vital need for the gifts and ministries of every other member; and every other member has a vital need for the unique gift(s) and ministry you bring to the whole Body of Christ.
...how absolutely interdependent we are; how much we truly need one another for our faith and life and ministry in Jesus Christ.
How truly needed and significant every single one of you is to the ministry and mission of your congregation and to the whole church of Jesus Christ.
The Culture of Scarcity
2 Kings 4:42-44
Now, the very first truth I want to engrave on your hearts and in your minds is this: No one who comes to the Lord ever goes away hungry. No one who enters into the presence of the Lord ever goes away empty. No one.
The reason for that is very simple and is the second truth I want you to engrave on your hearts and in your minds: our God is a God of abundance.