We surrender, God builds
Newsletter of the Albright Church Capital Stewardship Campaign
September 29, 2019 | vol. 2
WHAT SACRIFICE WILL YOU MAKE?
Serious building requires serious surrender, and serious surrender requires serious sacrifice. Yet some believers live lifestyles that require little or no sacrifice. They’re familiar with John 3:16, “For God so loved the world...,” but they need to be equally familiar with 1 John 3:16: “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.”
Whatever it cost to enrich the lives of others on behalf of Christ, Paul considered it a worthwhile sacrifice (Phil.3:7). He kept his eyes firmly fixed on the prize (Phil.3:14). He followed Jesus, who “for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame” (Heb.12:2). Jesus set aside the privileges of deity and took on “the very nature of a servant” (Phil.2:7), so that those who believed in him would be marked with the Spirit (Eph.1:13).
We all benefit daily from the sacrifices of other believers. One simple illustration is the building where we meet for our weekly service. Have you ever considered how many people have surrendered and sacrificed so you would have this specific place of worship?
Generations before us have sacrificed on our behalf, and now it’s our turn to willingly surrender to what God desires to build in and through us for those in our generation, those who will come after, and all for His glory. God doesn’t ask us to give any more than Jesus, who came “as an atoning sacrifice for our sins...since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another” (1 John 4:10-11).
Our Christ-like sacrifices should be:
1. Voluntary. Jesus said his life was not taken from him, but given freely (John 10:18). We may not be asked to die for our faith, but Jesus does expect us to die daily to our self-interests (Luke 9:23).
2. Costly. Israel’s King David said he would offer no sacrifice to God that cost him nothing (2 Samuel 24:24). Surrendering to God and serving Him is costly, and the cost is more than just financial. We may be asked to give up our dreams, our expectations, our reputations, our retirements – whatever God asks of us in order to serve His purposes.
3. Steady. We’re to be “completely humble and gentle...patient, bearing with one another in love” (Eph.4:2), doing for others what they cannot do for themselves; we’re to do this consistently.
As believers, our role in life has changed. Our job now is to represent the interests of Jesus. We are to be His face and hands and feet - we function as ambassadors for Christ (2 Cor.5:14-21); we serve at the will of King Jesus.
Our ambassadorship is more than a mere job; it is our highest calling. But in order to be built up as true ambassadors, we each have to make a critical decision: how much are we willing to sacrifice? Are we truly willing to surrender all to God, or not?
(Mostly taken from “Better Together” by Rick Warren.)
To remember our past, celebrate our present, and inspire our future, a “We Surrender, God Builds” Banquet will be catered here at Albright on Friday, October 25 at 6:30 pm. All individuals, Grade 6 and over, are invited. This advance notice gives you just over one month to make arrangements to be in attendance. You are urged to mark your calendars now and commit to attending this important event in the life of our church! Tickets will be available starting on October 6 for $10 a piece.
WHAT IS YOUR PART?
“Just what, exactly, is my part in ‘We Surrender, God Builds’?” This is a good question to be asking, and actually, is a question that only you can answer. No effort will be made during this campaign to instruct anyone as to the specific amount they should or should not give. You will not be told the dollar amount you are expected to give. This decision will rest with you.
But quite frankly, there is only one way for each of us to determine our commitment. It should be large enough to represent a real sacrifice. Our commitment should show our willingness to do without something we had planned otherwise to have. Of course, this will be different for each person. Our giving will not be equal, but our sacrifice should be. This is so that all may equally share in this great undertaking.
Starting the beginning of October, each household will have the opportunity to make a commitment to this campaign in the form of a commitment card. The commitment to be entered on this card should be over and above any tithe or offering now being given. In order to reach our goal and what is needed to begin our expansion, it will be necessary to increase what we are now giving to our church.
Earnest prayer is essential as we each reach a decision about this kind of commitment. We know it takes courage and trust to make a sacrificial commitment, and courage and trust come to those who pray.
Therefore, we encourage and will continue to encourage you to submit yourself before the Lord in prayer before you make your sacrificial commitment. We encourage and will continue to encourage you to evaluate and re-evaluate your level of commitment to Albright. We encourage and will continue to encourage you to fully surrender yourself to the Lord.
Our goal is to raise $750,000 in 3 years for our building expansion. It is important to note that this amount of capital is required before we can begin expanding. Continued information regarding your involvement in this campaign will be given in future newsletters over the next weeks.
PRAY ABOUT IT
Sometimes knowing God’s will is not our struggle, but doing God’s will is our real struggle. Many times when we say we are seeking God’s will, what we are really wanting to say to God is this: “Ok God, here’s what I’m planning to do. Now I need you to rubber stamp this, all right?” But God’s will is what HE Commands, NOT what WE plan.
We need to act upon HIS plans for us. We are to seek the will of God and obediently do it. Before God even begins to reveal His will to us, we must be surrendered to doing whatever it is that He desires for us to do.
We urge you to join us in praying for our “We Surrender, God Builds” campaign. Please pray faithfully:
1. That we, as Albright Church, will do God’s will.
2. For the spiritual growth of each person at Albright.
3. For a deeper commitment and involvement from each person.
4. That you will surrender to what God wants you to do in obedience to Him, even before He shows you what His will is for you.
5. For a successful Capital Stewardship Campaign.
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy,
to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God -
this is your true and proper worship.”
*Design plans and past newsletters are available for viewing in the hallway outside the prayer room*
Albright Stewardship Team:
Len Bobrowski, Sarah Millar, Angela Moore, Jeremy Nickerson, Rob Runtz, Anna Sipinski, Vivian Wesee