Cornerstone exists because of Jesus. We are a people who have been transformed by the gospel, the good news of Jesus Christ. Through Jesus’ death and resurrection, God has forgiven us and adopted us into his family. Now, we have a whole new life.
Through the gospel, God redeems us, forgives us, and adopts us into his family. The good news of Jesus’ death and resurrection makes each one of us a new creation and gives us a new identity: children of God. This is why we can never think of the church as an organization or a building. The church is actually a family—God’s family, filled with redeemed sinners that are now his children.
Through the gospel, God forgives us, adopts us into his family, and makes us his disciples. This means that the church is not just any family. We are a family formed by God—and sent out with a purpose.
The church is a family that ministers to one another, cares for one another, and builds one another up. Each member of the family is a child of God who is uniquely gifted to bless the family and to be a light in our city.
Just like a vine grows best with a good trellis, our church family grows best with good programs. Our programs and ministries are tailored to support the community and mission God has given us.
“Knowing that our money is God’s money means we need to put some thought in to what we do with it—and invite others to help us.”
When it comes to social situations, it’s common knowledge that you really shouldn’t bring up religion or politics. They make people uncomfortable, the reasoning goes, because they are so personal and people have so many different opinions.
Whether or not this is good advice, there is a third topic that is so taboo that we don’t even put it on the list: money. You can talk about money in general—the cost of living, for example—but it is absolutely and completely off limits to inquire about someone else’s money to their face. It is impolite to ask how much money someone makes, we definitely don’t ask how much debt they have, and we would never question how they spend. (Can you imagine? “So how much do you make a year? Do you give a lot to charity? Do you think maybe you should have gotten a less expensive car?”)
The reason we don’t talk about finances is because it feels immediately intrusive—we know intrinsically that our money is extremely personal. There is a kind of immediate understanding that where our treasure is, there our hearts are also. So asking about someone’s money is asking about their heart.
Yet this is the same reason why we have to talk about money. While not everyone should know all our business, someone should. We might not appreciate strangers or acquaintances asking us about our cholesterol levels and exercise habits, but we tell our close friends, families, and definitely our doctors. We do that because the people we love and the experts we trust deserve to know what’s going on, so we can make sure we are healthy. In the same way, there are people we love and experts we trust who deserve to know what’s going on with our money, so we can make sure we are healthy.
There’s a larger reason to invite people to speak into our financial lives: it’s not technically our money. As Christians we understand that “the earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it” (Psalm 24:1). Our money is God’s money. We are just stewarding it. So we can’t bury our heads in the sand and pretend what we do with our money isn’t all that important. It’s not wise to assume we know what’s best when it comes to our financial lives. Knowing that our money is God’s money means we need to put some thought in to what we do with it—and invite others to help us.
To hear more about this topic, click here for audio from our Thriving Financially in West LA Conference
Brian serves the church by overseeing preaching and Sunday morning services at Cornerstone.
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