Sunday, October 19, 2008

Gas Buy Down - Showing God's Love in a Practical Way

I am very perplexed. I am home sick today as you know and I was surfing the net.I was reading a post on my buddy Gavin's web page where his church got an unfavorable review at Google. So it got me thinking...I should check our church. So I did and it was fine. We got props for our organ, our fellowship hall and our beautiful stone church which we refer to as the "rock church."

Then I was thinking about this church that I see sometimes from the road that has a digital marquee. If you live in the Gallatin area you also can't help but see people in T-shirts from this particular church. The church in question - Freedom Church on Harris Lane. So I decide to check them out. They have a very busy web page with lots of rolling graphics and such. The pastor also has a blog that you can link up with. But what caught my eye as I was exploring their page was this "Gas Buy Down" Event. Apparently, they were able to knock .25 cents off gas and they stood on the street with signs that read that they were showing God's love in a practical way by doing so.

WOW! I am just so perplexed over this. I am saying NOTHING bad of this church or it's people but I just don't get it. Knocking .25 cents off the price of gas is showing God's love in a practical way? I just don't know that I agree with that. I was thinking back to Matthew 6:1-4 which reads, "Be careful not to do your 'acts of righteousness' before men, to be seen by them. If you do you will have no reward from your Father in heaven...But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right is doing, so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you."

This brings me to an aspect about my own church newsletter that troubles me. On the back of our weekly newsletter it displays a list of people of who have given monetary gifts in memorial or in honor of someone. It displays the family name and what their gift was in honor of or in memorial to and what they have directed their donation to. Sure it lets everybody know who has done a good deed by further supporting the church in a way other than tithes and offerings but I often wonder if this is in "violation" of the above verses from the book of Matthew. I often wonder how other people feel when they read this who would love to be able to give but can't do it as often as they like. We need a way to showcase God's love given through others in a practical way so as not to highlight only our monetary givings.

I don't know about knocking cents off gas or publishing givings is the right way to show God's love in a practical way. I would love to hear your thoughts. I am still percolating this one...


gavin richardson said...

i think one of the things missed is that gas is a luxury.. God provided manna for the Israelites, not more horses or whatever. we are not necessarily giving/showing God's grace as much as making it easier to live the life we've become accustomed too.. and i think we can all agree that our accustomed living could use some honest adjustment.