Last week I shared information regarding an incredible leap of faith and devotion to the true spirit of Christmas at Baxter Road Bible Church. The entire month of December they are giving 100% of church income to those less fortunate in our community, with special emphasis on local missions.
Their church theme for December is “It’s Not Your Birthday”. Sr. Pastor Bob Mather’s sermon last Sunday was on this theme and can be accessed by clicking here.
Pastor Bob reports that so far this month, their members have contributed over $20,000 for their Christmas Benevolence Fund. He notes, “We are trying to mainly help the ministries that don’t have deep pockets behind them. After these checks go out we are going to concentrate on helping a few of the more needy ministries with greater amounts instead of spreading it out and only helping each one a little.”
He shared the names of the organizations having checks drawn for them this week.
$2,000 – AWAIC (Abused Women’s Aid In Crisis)
$1,000 – Alaska Correctional Ministries (HMCC – TLC Program)
$1,000 – Parachutes (Youth Ministry in Dimond Center)
$2,000 – Crisis Pregnancy Center
$1,000 – Kid’s Kitchen
$1,000 – Rodger Huntington (Kokrine Hills Bible Camp for Native Youth)
Pastor Bob and his congregation are truly excited and committed with this new venture. I’m speechless for their commitment. All I’ve been hearing since early November is “buy, buy, buy”…”special pricing”, “sale”, “spend now”, “hurry”, and “don’t be left out”. Here’s a group of dedicated Christians who are putting their faith to work by giving to others instead of to themselves. So far, no other church in our community has come to my attention with a program of this magnitude.
If you want to be a part of this endeavor, I’m certain Baxter Road Bible Church would not turn down a contribution in support of this massive act of faith. Their website is here and their phone number is 907-337-5222>.
In 1999, noted American theologian Walter Brueggemann penned an article for Christian Century titled “The Liturgy of Abundance, The Myth of Scarcity” . It can be accessed online by clicking the title.
In this article Brueggemann observed:
The majority of the world’s resources pour into the United States. And as we Americans grow more and more wealthy, money is becoming a kind of narcotic for us. We hardly notice our own prosperity or the poverty of so many others. The great contradiction is that we have more and more money and less and less generosity — less and less public money for the needy, less charity for the neighbor.
Robert Wuthnow, sociologist of religion at Princeton University, has studied stewardship in the church and discovered that preachers do a good job of promoting stewardship. They study it, think about it, explain it well. But folks don’t get it. Though many of us are well intentioned, we have invested our lives in consumerism. We have a love affair with “more” — and we will never have enough. Consumerism is not simply a marketing strategy. It has become a demonic spiritual force among us, and the theological question facing us is whether the gospel has the power to help us withstand it.>
The folks at Baxter Road Bible Church are showing they get it.