In the joyous season of Easter, we often hear from the book of Acts. The writer describes the community of the first believers: All who believed were together and had all things in common; they would sell their possessions and goods and distribute the proceeds to all, as any had need. (Acts 2:44-45).
Those first believers gave generously close to home, sharing their bounty with their own community. Later, as Paul began his missionary journeys, believers gave to support other communities further away.
Does that sequence of giving carry a hint for us, for Women of the ELCA? I think it does, and our purpose statement seems to say the same thing.
Sharing our blessings first with our community of women created in the image of God and then reaching out to the rest of God’s beloved creation is a wonderful way to act in glad generosity as those first believers did. It’s good for our hearts!
This message is an excerpt from the April 2016 Women of the ELCA stewardship devotion by Audrey Riley.