Heart Essentials: January Worship and Stewardship Theme

Our 2016 stewardship vision and January worship theme is Heart Essentials. During this heart-felt stewardship season, we will be thinking about, reflecting upon, and perhaps even wrestling with ways we can cultivate healthier hearts and stronger, more vibrant spirits.

With the foundation of Jesus’ teaching, “where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:21), we will discern where our hearts are now and where our hearts might thrive. Then, with thriving hearts, we will seek to respond to the goodness and the gifts God showers upon us.

Our worship theme follows three stories of Jesus encouraging people to cultivate thriving, responsive hearts. These stories will lead us to invigorated spiritual health and renewed understanding of our hearts.

LAUMC’s Heart Essentials stewardship season will include three Sundays focusing on Heart Essentials as well as three stewardship gatherings. We will be invited to make our commitments to the 2016 Operating Fund on or by Sunday, January 24, using an online form or commitment cards.

Heart Essentials Worship Series

January 10: A Heart of Surrender
The scripture story will be about a man whom Jesus healed when he gave Jesus his withered hand. After he was healed, what was the state of the man’s heart? What did the man do?

January 17: A Heart of Gratitude
The scripture story will be about the group of people Jesus healed of leprosy. After they were healed, where were their hearts? How did they respond?

January 24: A Heart of Worship
The scripture story will be about Zacchaeus, whose heart yearned for something more. We will discover how his heart became strong and how he could not help but respond generously to his newly found abundant life.

Stewardship Gatherings

To support our stewardship focus, there will be three informational and participatory gatherings, each with a different focus but all designed to help us grow healthier hearts in 2016. Please consider registering for and attending at least one gathering.

Stewardship of Gifts and Resources
Thursday, January 21, 7:30–9:00pm, Creekside
Hosts: Becky Everett, Tonya Treble, and Derek Nam

There have been announcements in recent weeks about a contributions shortfall at LAUMC in 2015. Are you concerned? Would you like to understand the congregation’s giving patterns and the underlying demographics? Would you like to know more about how we invest our operating funds to support our ministries? Through our stewardship, we provide resources that enable LAUMC to reach out in faith to our congregation and our community while, at the same time, we cultivate our own hearts of generosity and gratitude. Come learn about the financial realities we face as a congregation as Derek Nam, chair of the Finance Committee, Tonya Treble, from the Extravagant Generosity Committee, and Becky Everett, LAUMC director of operations, host a discussion of how our stewardship can ensure a healthy future for LAUMC. Registration is appreciated, though drop-ins are welcome.

Stewardship Through Family Generosity
Friday, January 22, 6:00pm, Creekside
Hosts: Brian and Kim Jones

It’s tough to raise a family in the Bay Area. How can we be generous to the church and still pay for tuition, sports, extracurriculars, and a home, all while trying to pay off debt and save for retirement? What do we teach our kids about giving, and how do we set examples for them? How can our practice of giving draw us closer to God and give us peace? Hear Brian and Kim Jones share their experiences, and then discuss what Extravagant Generosity might look like for us. Come for a snack supper at 6:00pm, followed by child care for young children, stewardship activities for older children (with Lisa Conway and Pastor Mariellen), and interactive conversation for adults. If you would like supper and/or child care provided, please register at least one week in advance so arrangements can be made. For others, registration is appreciated, but drop-ins are welcome.

Stewardship Through Scripture and Stories
Saturday, January 23, 11:00am–12:30pm, Creekside C/D
Hosts: Phil Pompei and Pam Milam

How can we cultivate hearts of generosity while living a lifestyle that demands so much of our time, talents, and treasures? What wisdom can we learn from the scriptures in our quest to cultivate generous hearts? What does generous living look like, and how can it bring us closer to God? Discuss these and other important questions at an open meeting. Hear stories from LAUMC members Pam Milam and Phil Pompei and bring your own to share as we wrestle with our call to practice extravagant generosity. Those who want to continue in conversation might want to go out to lunch together. Registration is appreciated, though drop-ins are welcome.

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