Growing in Generosity Sunday
As part of our final year of the Capital Campaign Growing to Give we focused on Growing in Generosity to All. As we close out this campaign, we wanted to give members an experience of what we have been talking about.
On Sunday, October 4 everyone in worship was given five dollars ($5). This is a gift of grace- unexpected and unearned.
The invitation to the assembly was to take these gifts of grace, this unearned abundance, and go out and be generous with it in the world. Do something meaningful with this money. Think of some way they could make an impact on those in need- family, friends, neighbors, organizations, strangers.
We also asked members to share the story of what they did with this gift of grace through pictures and video. So, tell us your story!
Post pictures on social media using the #sjlcgives hashtag or email them to We'll post them here as they come in!
Joyce shared her experience-
Last Sunday we received a five dollar bill to “pass on” a little generosity to someone else. I had picked up a few extra soups from the First Presbyterian Soup Supper, so I decided to drop one off to our neighbor. This neighbor has had a few set backs this year, and we had not seen much of her throughout the summer. For various reasons, I had a little anxiety taking the soup over to her. My thoughts were, “Would she like this soup, could she even eat this soup, does she want me to stop at her home?” But, I gathered up my courage and knocked on her door. She did not answer, and I thought “Whew. I got out of that one. I don’t have to talk to her. At least I tried.” However, I did go back the next day, and she answered the door. She was so happy to see me. We talked for a few minutes, and when I handed her the soup, she was so grateful and could not thank me enough. She told me that she had difficulty eating, but soups were something that worked well. Then, she started talking about the blessings that she had received over the past several months.
A couple side benefits from this challenge were:
- I got to know my neighbor better and appreciate her struggles.
- Giving that small gift to my neighbor probably brought me more joy than it did to her.
- I hope to continue doing some of those small things to “make someone’s day.”
One member shared the following experience-
I was leaving Westdale Mall today and saw something many of us have seen before, a person in a wheelchair holding a piece of cardboard with the words “God Bless”. At first, I was relieved to be in the outside turn lane and I didn’t have to make eye contact. I reached in my purse and there was the envelope we received on Sunday with the $5 bill. I came back around, pulled up next to the person and held out the money. She asked if I could get her something to eat as she hadn’t eaten in two days. A cheeseburger and fries and maybe an orange soda would be good. No one behind me honked as we sat through the green turn arrow. I added a couple of dollars and picked up a meal at McDonald’s.
I went back, parked, and joined her in the median. Her name is Christina, and she has muscular dystrophy. She has a motorized wheelchair that would take her back to 33rd Avenue where she’s staying in a hotel. I gave her the meal and told her Jesus told me to do it and I’d pray for her. Sometimes these situations are scams (I don’t think this was), but would Jesus second guess the need? How do you get a meal at McDonald’s if the dining room isn’t open? Can you go through the drive through in wheelchair? How handicapped accessible are shelters in our area? I’m glad she didn’t just take the $5 I originally offered.
Sometimes, our generosity isn’t perfect, just as those we are generous with aren’t perfect. But in the middle of this exchange, something happened that fed both of those involved.
Jason, Kim, Weston, Kylin, and Brooklyn Vogelgesang shared this story-
We are not very active with social media but heard we can email our experience with the Growing in Generosity here. We were not present for the outdoor service and did not receive the $5 gift but wanted to participate anyway. We purchased ingredients to make "ghost cookies," baked them as a family, and took them to the kids' Great-Grandmother in the Solon Assisted Living facility. Nadine (NeNe) cannot leave the facility due to COVID-19 but having cookies brought to her brightened her day. We were able to see her and eat the snacks in the facility's outdoor gazebo with masks on.
Thanks for the wonderful opportunity!
And it's not just members, Brenda Johnson shared the following- We were at our granddaughter’s (Ashlyn Williams) confirmation at your church. We added our $5 to buy socks for our churches Socktober giving mission. Thank you for your giving back! May God continue to bless you and the church.
Tina and her son Otto shared their $10 by buying food for the Scouting for Food drive on October 10.