We hear a lot these days about the stock market and volatility in share prices and sluggish house prices and underperforming investments affecting retirees. Investments are things we put in place to help secure our future and bring a return. In listening to some conversations on the radio it made me think about how we invest as followers of Jesus and where we are putting our efforts and what kind of return we are seeking.
As we farewell Jess at the end of this month we will celebrate all that she has invested into the life of our kids ministry at Parkside. She will move on to invest in another community and in more young people, but the seed she has sown and the investment she has made in the lives of our kids and families will still bear fruit long after she has gone. I want to thank Jess for all the time and effort and passion she has given to helping our kids grow in their knowledge of God. This is sowing and investing that will reap an eternal reward, not just a dividend or profit that is of limited earthly value.
In fare-welling Jess and thinking about investments from our societies point of view, it made me question where I am investing and what things I am giving my heart and efforts to. We can put time and effort into things that we can’t take into the next life, or we can seek to invest in God’s kingdom with our whole heart, while also being good earthly stewards of the physical blessings God has given us. Jesus in his ministry and Paul in his letters talked a lot about sowing and investing into eternal things. People and their souls and spiritual development; things that will carry over into eternity.
Jesus in Matthew 6 says: "Don't hoard treasure down here where it gets eaten by moths and corroded by rust or - worse! - stolen by burglars. Stockpile treasure in heaven, where it's safe from moth and rust and burglars. It's obvious, isn't it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being.” – Message Translation
Paul in 1 Corinthians 3 says: “I planted the seed, Apollos watered it, but God has been making it grow. So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow. The one who plants and the one who waters have one purpose, and they will each be rewarded according to their own labor. For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building. By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ.” – NIV
May we all seek to sow and invest in God’s kingdom, and in people and their faith journey. Who are you sowing into and who are you investing in. God does the work of growing, but he calls us to sow and invest and water. We pray a blessing on Jess as she moves to a new community to keep sowing and investing into kids and thank her for all she has done at Parkside over the past 3 years.
Grace and Peace - Garry