“We know so many who have lost their jobs, are struggling with the loss of their loved ones, and may feel like distancing themselves from God and the church, but it’s important to cling to God,” said Pastor Roberto Herrera, Stewardship Ministries director for the church in Inter-American and organizer of the division’s Stewardship Congress. The congress was also designed to reinforce the mission of the church in every community, explained Herrera. It’s about reaffirming the faith of each member in the plan God has for each one of His children, he added.
Pastor Elie Henry, president of the church in Inter-America, reflected on God’s promise of providing for His people found in Philippians 4:19. “This is not about finding a way into prosperity but how God wants to give us what we need as our Provider, but it goes beyond material things,” said Pastor Henry. It’s about understanding what our needs and wants are, where treasures lie in our heart, he added. “God wants us to trust in Him and think beyond, to the eternal life to come.”
The two-hour online event, held on August 14, in English, Spanish, and French, separately, highlighted God’s plan through offerings and the tithing system. Keynote presentations were featured to support the on-going Stewardship Ministries programs and activities held across the 24 unions, or church regions, in the IAD every month, organizers said.
“To understand stewardship, or life management, we have to understand what it means to return to God, to walk with God, follow His instructions and counsel,” said Evangelist Alejandro Bullón. Seeking God and His wisdom while surrendering body, mind, heart, and all that we have will lead to becoming faithful stewards, he added.
Paul Douglas, treasurer of the Adventist World Church, highlighted tithing and offering around the world church through several decades as a view of how God provides through the tithing system. Douglas pointed to the purpose, practice, principles, policies, patterns, and promise associated with tithing. “God gave us this tithing system for a purpose, and one of those purposes is to finish this work, so we must rally together as leaders and members committed to the task,” he said.
Giving offerings is far more than supporting the church and its mission, said Pastor Benjamin Maxson, former stewardship director for the Adventist World Church. “The primary purpose of the offering is to free our hearts from the chains of materialism that are broken only through a relationship with Jesus Christ our God,” said Maxson. Tithing is about returning to God a portion of what He has given, and offering is a celebration of praise of who God is in our lives, he further explained.
Committing to giving offerings will bring about immeasurable blessings, said Pastor Ismael Castillo, president of Montemorelos University during the Spanish program of the congress. “We need to see that we have local responsibility, with a global vision, in the plan of salvation with our offerings. Whatever is missing, God will supply.”
There’s no doubt that being good stewards will result in greater blessings for the church in Inter-America. “We are convinced… that Christian stewardship and the spirituality of the church is vital in fulfilling the mission year-round, especially in the times that we are living in,” Herrera said.
The congress included Q&A sessions, musical selections, prayer, and additional spiritual nuggets.
To view Inter-America’s Stewardship Congress, click your preferred link: