If there is time…if we can fit it in…if we feel up to it…if we have the spare change…each of us has probably used one of those excuses in our lifetime to avoid going somewhere or doing something. The excuses are abundant. When it comes to our faith life, there should be no excuses, right? An intentional disciple makes time, prioritizes time for service, gives abundantly. I get it, we are all busy. Between work, extracurriculars, family obligations, the list goes on and on for where we spend our time, talents, and treasure. However, when we are in pursuit of intentional discipleship you intend to pray more, serve more, and give more. It’s priority #1.
I have often said it is easier to teach children about stewardship than us adults. Take this example, when I ask children what the first day of the week is they respond Sunday. Easy. They look up at the visual calendar posted on the wall and see Sunday all the way to the left. To kids, Sunday is the first day of the week. Ask adults the same question and you get a totally different answer. In a small poll I did with some adult friends of mine, I asked them the first day of the week. Monday. The first day of the week in many of our minds, without really thinking about it, is the day when we have to get back to work, get the kids loaded in the car, think about lunches, snacks, after school activities, the board meeting later….and again, the list goes on and on.
Interesting, isn’t it? If you were to ask yourself that question before reading this article, would you say that your week started on Sunday or Monday? Now, why is this significant? Because depending on if you are a Sunday or Monday person, your state of mind regarding stewardship might change. “First fruits” mentality is seeing Sunday as the beginning of the week. Your week begins with Sunday Mass. Your first “appointment” is time in prayer, your first “activity” is serving during Mass (Reader, Usher, Musician, etc.), your first “expenditure” for the week is your gift to the Church. Time, talent, and treasure- a stewardship way of life, completed by 9am Sunday morning. What a way to kick-off your week! In the leftover state of mind, you might miss Mass because you ran out of time this weekend, or didn’t have extra cash to contribute, or energy to serve. Do we give our leftovers or the first fruits?
Now, don’t feel left out if you attend Saturday evening. I am sure you get the idea. We must make choices that prioritize stewardship, if we are on a pathway to intentional discipleship.
Katie Price is the Coordinator for Stewardship at the Cathedral and within the Diocese of Springfield. She can be reached at the Parish Offices or at [email protected]