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      Nurturing people in the image of God since 1868.                                                                          POB 397/520 Dry Creek Rd./Smithville, TN




Scrooge and Stewardship

Are you familiar with the Dickens' tale entitled "A Christmas Carol"? The story is about the transformation of Ebenezer Scrooge, a greedy old businessman who cares nothing about his employees or his friends. Only after an encounter with three ghosts--the ghost of Christmas past, the ghost of Christmas present, and the ghost of Christmas future--is he able to see himself and change his ways. What a change! Scrooge ends up being the most generous, loved man in town.

Several lessons are apparent in this favorite story.

    1. Once one has a reputation, it is hard to live it down. We may know and love the story of Scrooge, but most of us think of Scrooge as stingy and miserable. The name is synonymous with a materialistic, money-grabbing attitude.

    2. It is more blessed to give than to receive. Christians believe these words simply because they were spoken by our Lord, but the lesson is hard at times. Scrooge learned by experience the joy of giving. It is more blessed to give! Christians delight in giving. God loves "hilarious" givers.
    3. We need to consider the big picture. Wrong decisions often come from tunnel vision. Life is more than the present. Plans must consider the past, the present, and the future. Values must be shaped by all of life. Every score will not be evened in this life.

    4. God's plan for every life is transformation. Every day we can improve upon the previous day. We can grow, we can change, and we can develop.

At this giving time of year, each of us can evidence our generosity. We can lay up treasures in heaven. We can continue to grow. Thank you for being a generous church. It is apparent where you hearts are. Thank you for being a loving church. Thank you for caring. Thank you for making a difference.

— Robert J. Young

For His Cause,
Tim Woodward