Stewardship at NDC
Based on the Sermon Series “MINE!!!”
For six Sundays, we spent time learning about stewardship versus ownership and what it means to be good stewards of what God has blessed each of us with — our giftings, talents, and resources. To put it simply, God owns everything and distributes it as he chooses. Our job is to be good and wise stewards of what we’ve been given.
Everyone in attendance at the start of the series received an envelope with money in it. Either $100, $50, $20, or $10 bill. The task was to be good stewards of this money and invest it in God’s kingdom in a creative and meaningful way (and no give-backs! Meaning, you weren’t allowed to give it back to NDC).
We asked everyone to fill out a short anonymous survey with what they did with the money (thank you to everyone who filled it out!) Below are the responses. We hope reading the responses encourages you to continue pursuing the spirit of giving and stewardship.
Upon receiving the $20 I immediately lost it. I was carefully considering how best to invest it in the kingdom of God and praying for inspiration when I realized I did not know where my envelope was. I searched a bit, but it was nowhere to be found. After losing it, I spend a significant amount of time considering that I may, in fact, be a terrible steward. I thought about my own money and other things entrusted to my care. So I think you could say this was successful insofar as I have come to think about stewardship and desire to become a better steward. Then, after a few weeks, there in the back of the car, I found the envelope! Still a bad steward, but not so bad now. I continued to pray and wait for inspiration of what I should do. I have finally decided to donate the $20 to the cause for canonization for Julia Greeley. I chose this as an investment in the kingdom of God because she is a model Christian and I think it would benefit many people if her story is more widely known. If she becomes a canonized saint her story has a greater chance of traveling across the world and inspiring others. Julia Greeley was born into slavery and later moved to Denver. She worked tirelessly to support the poor of her community and she met the racism and discrimination of her time with charity. She was a devoted Christian and a beautiful example of what it means to live for the Kingdom of God. More information about her life is available here: https://juliagreeley.org/
- We donated to Joshua Station because we have given to them in the past.
- I give to St. Jude Medical Center for research and care of children with cancer. I especially love that they care for the children and their families free of charge. I am investing the money I received to further their efforts. Thank you for this opportunity!
- My husband and I combined our two $10 bills, added $100 of our own money and made a $120 donation to K-Love radio. K-Love radio ministers to people throughout the world through songs that speak the truth about the love and redemption God offers to a hurt and dying world.
- I donated to The Dolores Project – a women’s shelter in Denver.
- I doubled the money in my envelope ($20), to equal $40. I immediately thought of World Vision, since it costs $39 to sponsor a child. Then today I got an email from World Vision saying that donations today would make 15x impact towards a Hunger Relief Fund… so the money would go even further. Finally, I’ve been behind in the Bible reading plan and was reading today in Mark, where it talks about how Jesus multiplied the fish and bread to feed a bunch of people. So I felt like that was where I should invest the money from church. So I donated $40 to the Hunger Relief Fund of World Vision.
- We combined two envelopes plus a little extra to a single mom raising 5 children. Her own mom died many years ago of AIDS due to drug addiction. She was raised by a grandmother who is no longer living. This girl works very hard to be a good mom, worked hard to earn her LPN. She also enjoys nature, photography and writing poetry. We asked her to spend the money on something special for herself .
- I added $10 of my own and donated the money ($20) to Joshua Station! I wanted to invest my money into our community and to an organization that I know really needs it and will use it wisely.
- I’m giving the money to my two grandsons. They are saving money to be able to go to “Christ in youth” camp in June. Planted the money seed on fertile soil.
- I put the money towrads Joshua Station’s Spruce-a-Room.
- We added $230 of our money to the $20 we had from NDC and used it to sponsor a child in Guatemala.
- I donated it to The Ocean Cleanup Foundation – taking care of God’s creation is an investment in the kingdom.
- Recently a young pastor died very tragically. His 3 children are students at one of the local Christian schools. I invested the money given to me in the educational fund that was set up for them by the church their dad had pastored.
- I gave the $10 I received from the church to missionaries serving the Berkeley area helping lead college kids into a relationship with Jesus.
- I donated to Childhelp.org. I multiplied my $10 by 10 and donated to help abused kids get a back pack of essential items to help them adjust to moving out of their situation.
- I purchased a Jesus Calling desk calendar and a prayer journal for a friend who lost her mom a few months ago and very recently a sister-in-law who was like a sister to her and only a year older 🙁 I spent a little over the $20 because I have another friend who has had a rough year in teaching, similar to me, and I personally love Jesus Calling (Sarah Young) so I bought her one as well just as a daily pick-me-up. A lot of teachers, myself included, are having a really hard time finding our purpose this year so daily pick-me-ups have become almost a requirement to help get through the day.
I signed our family of four up to cook a meal at the Ronald McDonald House in May. I will use this money to supplement the preparation for the meal. I have always wanted to volunteer with my boys and find it challenging with their ages. RMH Denver is perfect. Our son is a frequent flyer at the Children’s Hospital, so it’s a great way for us to give back. Thank you.
- Donated to NSCD (National Sports Center of the Disabled in Winter Park Colorado). My son, picked this as he sees them on the mountain and in the community. Proud of him for picking this on his own.
- I invested this money in cleaning up the planet. It’s important to me because I would not like our planet to die.
- I invested the money in Community Bible Study. I have been a leader in this ministry for 25 years. Their mission is to make disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ in our communities available to all.
- I got $20 in my envelope, and my wife got $10. We decided to combine both of ours together and deposit it in our account with kiva.org. I opened this account with Kiva in 2010 when NDC first did a stewardship series. I took the $5 I got and added $20 of my own to make my first loan. Every time the loan got repaid I lent it again, paying the transaction fees to send it out to other loan recipients. In 2018 when we did another stewardship series, I took my $10 and added $15 of my own to double our loanable balance and continued making new loans. This year with the $20 I received and the $10 my wife received, we added $20 to double our loanable balance again. In total, the $50 we’ve received from NDC over the years plus the additional amount we’ve added has been loaned out a total of 19 times for a total loaned amount of $525. We’ve sent money to 8 different countries with almost 50% going to Guatemala, including the money we received this year. The money we received from NDC two weeks ago went to a group of women operating a business in Guatemala. Here’s the description of the loan we made with the money we received: Esmeralda is twenty-seven years old, is married, and is the mother of four children (ages 3 to 11). She is a very busy businesswoman. She is married to a teacher and together they teach at the kindergarten and primary level. Esmeralda opened a small bookstore eight years ago, where she sells school supplies and stationery from a room in her house in a rural area in the state of Quiché. With her first KIVA loan, she will be able to buy more inventory (paper, notebooks, pens). Seven Mayan women who speak Pocomchi and Quechí form part of the “Bright Minds” Puente de Amistad Community Bank. They are determined to get ahead with their bookstore businesses. Because they have little to no formal education, the monthly educational talks that are part of the “Microcredito Plus” program for loans, education, and health services, are essential to their success. Topics are drawn from 4 areas including health, family issues, women’s issues, and effective business management tools. Every two months they have access to basic health services including examinations and consultations. Thanks to the great work of Kiva and their partners the money we received from NDC will continue helping people with microloans for many years to come. We thought this was the best way to steward NDC’s money by taking a relatively small amount of money and multiplying its impact over time through microfinance.
- I gave the money to a friend getting a kidney transplant!
- I combined it with my own money to sponsor a child in Guatemala.
- We combined our money and decided to start sponsoring a child monthly. This child was found through the organization Hawassa Hope, which is a nonprofit that was started by some people we knew in our community growing up. Hawassa Hope is dedicated “being hope to vulnerable children and families through sponsorship, children’s home support, small business grants and clean water.” They work with families in Ethiopia. We decided to sponsor Bizunesh who is 9 years old and in 2nd grade. Bizunesh’s father is blind which makes it difficult for him to work. We used New Denver’s money to initiate this sponsorship but we will continue to sponsor Bizunesh.
- I gave to the Denver Rescue Mission because homelessness is so prevalent in our city and I see so many unhoused individuals in my area. My hope is that giving to this organization can help provide individuals and families with the basic human rights to shelter and food while offering long-term additional support. I feel called to give to God’s kingdom in a way that will provide for others in need.
- I used the money to make lunch and invited 2 ladies, who sat next to me at church (I didn’t know them), to come to my house, had lunch and got to know them! I did it because I value friendship and fellowship in the church as part of the kingdom of God. And now the Lord gave me a bonus – 2 new sisters in Christ!
- I like to keep a couple granola bars in my car’s glove compartment so that if I see a needy person at a red light, I stop to give him/her a bar. I’m really disappointed when I stop to open my glove box and realize I’ve run out of bars, so I used my $10 to buy a large box at Costco to keep in my car.
- We’re investing in a Spruce-a-Room project for Joshua Station. This outreach is something that resonates in our home and we were glad to have the additional opportunity to support a new set of families moving in.
- We’re using the money towards Joshua Station’s Spruce-a-Room.
- My friend recently got married and has had a tough year. I bought her a health juice and listened to her, provided comfort, and reminded her of God’s love and plan for her.
- We added our own money and made 48 homeless kits that include socks, water and a snack. We keep them in our car and give out a needed
- I am a case manager and was working with a client who struggled to keep his apartment clean as well as make payments on his rent . I had prayed for an avenue to help this man, especially with tidying up his home. When I showed up at his apartment, a woman (who had been homeless) had cleaning supplies and was getting ready help my client tidy up. I was so grateful and immediately was reminded of the money the church had provided in the envelope. I handed her the money and asked if I could assist in her finding help. She was grateful for the gift and I was blessed through this experience.
- I was inspired by the story Norton told of David preparing the resources for Solomon to build the temple. So I wanted to put it towards some form of worship. I used this money plus some of my own money to purchase a beautiful, high quality nature photo that will be hung in my office and will be a reminder to worship God throughout my day. It is scenery from the desert, southwest region of the US, which is a reminder of a trip I took to Christ in the Desert Monastery. Also, the photographer gives 40% of the purchase price to support the monastery, a place where monks are continually praying and worshiping God throughout their day.
- We bought a Harry Potter lego set for a girl in need in our neighborhood. A few weeks ago, she was having jabbing pains in her ankle, but the doctor diagnosed it as just a sprain. The pain kept getting worse. So they went to 3 more doctors and they all said, just a sprain. Meanwhile, the ankle was getting bigger and redder, and the pain worsened. Finally, her mom asked a doctor friend and found out she had a bacterial infection. She went to the hospital for a week, she took a lot of pain medicine, and three holes were drilled into her ankle, causing her to miss activities. She is in a wheelchair but is feeling much better and having a speedy recovery.
- Three people in our family combined our amounts and added some of our own money to purchase 64 backpacks for immigrants that were just released from the ICE detention center in Aurora today. Casa de Paz provides the backpacks to help immigrants and helps them reunite with loved ones.
- A fellow alum from my high school has come upon some hard times after a very successful career in economics. He contracted sepsis and lost all of his fingers on both hands and most of his toes on both feet. Unable to work now he is dire straights financially, and to top it off, his landlord is raising his rent and he is unable to live in his apartment any longer and on short notice he has to move. We decided to use the money from the church and our own to help him with rent for a new apartment.
- Upon receiving the $20 I immediately lost it. I was carefully considering how best to invest it in the kingdom of God and praying for inspiration when I realized I did not know where my envelope was. I searched a bit, but it was nowhere to be found. After losing it, I spent a significant amount of time considering that I may, in fact, be a terrible steward. I thought about my own money and other things entrusted to my care. So I think you could say this was successful insofar as I have come to think about stewardship and desire to become a better steward. Then, after a few weeks, there in the back of the car, I found the envelope! Still a bad steward, but not so bad now. I continued to pray and wait for inspiration of what I should do. I have finally decided to donate the $20 to the cause for canonization for Julia Greeley. I chose this as an investment in the kingdom of God because she is a model Christian and I think it would benefit many people if her story were more widely known. If she becomes a canonized saint her story has a greater chance of traveling across the world and inspiring others. Julia Greeley was born into slavery and later moved to Denver. She worked tirelessly to support the poor of her community and she met the racism and discrimination of her time with charity. She was a devoted Christian and a beautiful example of what it means to live for the Kingdom of God. More information about her life is available here: https://juliagreeley.org/