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Catalyst 2.0 Prayer Guide : Why Should I Bring My Tithe Into the Storehouse by Larry Jones

Why Should I Bring My Tithe Into the Storehouse? 

by Larry Jones    

Malachi 3:10:  “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it.”   

There are so many ways to spend my money these days.  There are many opportunities for entertainment, or if I really feel philanthropic I can find lots of non-profit organizations that are doing great work. However, while I enjoy concerts, and I have my favorite organizations that help the poor in our community and make the community better, I support them with the funds I have available AFTER I bring my tithe into the storehouse of the Lord. While I work hard for the salary I receive, I only have that job because God made it available to me. I only have the education I need to be able to do the job I do because God prepared the way for me. With this in mind it only seems appropriate that I also return to the Lord at least a tenth of what He has given to me.   

I don’t believe that by giving back to the Lord, I will not face challenges in my life. I don’t believe that you can buy salvation. I don’t believe that by giving to the Lord it makes me any better than anyone else.  I do believe that it is what God wants, what God teaches, and what is expected of a Christian.    

Giving must be from the heart, and it must be without a grudge, for scripture also says that the Lord loves a cheerful giver.  As we enter into Catalyst 2.0, I hope you will give to your fullest capability and thank the Lord for the opportunity.

We are an affluent people.  Ask yourself if you are maximizing the resources God has gifted you with in order to further God’s kingdom.
Posted by Terri Soper at Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Catalyst 2.0 Prayer Guide : With Kindness and Clarity by Jerry Cain


With Kindness and Clarity 

by Jerry Cain

Acts 16:9:  During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, “Come over to Macedonia and help us.” 

On the oldest maps it is called “Disputed Territory” but today it is marked as North East India connected to the rest of India by a tiny strip of land barely 25 miles wide.    

A unique feature of the “disputed territory” is the strength of over 7000 Baptist churches located in these seven states approximately the size of Kansas and Missouri combined. The first Christian missionaries arrived in Arunachal Pradesh in 1965 and today 26% of the population has embraced the good news of Jesus. Mizoram has the highest literacy rate in India and is 85% Christian. The residents of Nagaland embraced their first missionary in 1872 and now over 91% of the population is Baptist.   

This strategic Christian community is bordered on all sides by four major worldviews and has daily interaction with Communist China on the north, Buddhist Burma to the East, Muslim Bangladesh to the south and Hindu India on the west. Much like the early Christians in the Acts of the Apostles, these followers of Jesus speak with kindness and clarity to worldviews we seldom encounter in Clay County.   And now these brothers and sisters feel led to start a Christian liberal arts university.   

Second Baptist Church had a part in this nascent cause by supporting Steve Smith and me last April to visit this “disputed territory” and advise concerning the birth of North East Christian University. One sleepless night Paul envisioned a Macedonian saying, “Come over and help us,” and he took the gospel to Europe thus impacting the way people in Clay County see the world. North East India has now made that same request, “Come over and help us,” and 2BC responded through the Send Initiative. Only history will tell if the “disputed territory” becomes the epicenter of peaceful, international religious interchange through North East Christian University.

Who is calling to you, “Come over and help us?”  Ask God to open your ears and your eyes to the call.
Posted by Terri Soper at Monday, October 20, 2014

Catalyst 2.0 Prayer Guide : Experiencing Faith by Christy Edwards

Experiencing Faith

by Christy Edwards

Hebrews 11:1:  Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.   

As an experiential learner, I love to see things with my eyes, walk the streets with my feet and feel the love for people with my heart. I also want this for my children. So, it made perfect sense for us to travel to South Dakota to learn about the Lakota people and experience this new culture and people as a family.   

I can talk to my kids all day about the beauty and gift of serving alongside others, but until they begin to experience that for themselves, it is simply someone else’s story to them. Going to SD together gave my sons the chance to begin writing their own chapter in what I hope will be a lifelong novel about what it is to show the love of Christ to others.   

I often pray that God will use me as the hands and feet of Jesus. It was a new thing to pray this for my children. Watching Jackson work alongside Blane Baker was something I will never forget. Blane was working with the group to move a mountain of dirt. They had shovels and large buckets. Seeing Jackson wanted to participate, Blane found him a spade and a coffee can so he could join in. Jackson worked hard to fill his coffee can and help move that mountain of dirt. While working together, Blane became Jackson’s new friend and role model.   

In the evenings, Byron and Toni Buffalo ate with us. After dinner one night, Byron got out his flute and began playing. The music was mesmerizing, but no one loved it more than Luke. He was enchanted and every time Byron stopped playing, Luke asked for more. Seeing the way my one year old son connected to this Native American man was a gift. Children have a special way of moving beyond cultural boundaries.   

Going to South Dakota as a family was a rich experience for us and without the generosity of so many who have given to Catalyst, it would have been a financial burden. I’m grateful to be part of such a giving community of faith.    

Ask God to use you as the hands and feet of Jesus: in Liberty, in the Kansas City Metro Area, and around the world.
Posted by Terri Soper at Sunday, October 19, 2014