In January of 2000, an employee in the group I managed at the largest communications company in the world walked into my office with a very heavy heart. He said, “Do you know how much money I lost today?” You see that morning this company issued a preliminary earnings report to warn Wall Street that they were going to miss their numbers. Needless to say, the stock plummeted when the market opened, and this man lost hundreds of thousands of dollars. He had been one of the original employees and had reaped an incredible number of stock options over the years. I reminded him of a discussion we had back in December of 1999 when he was heavy hearted over his tax situation, and I had told him that he ought to donate some of his stock options to a church and write off the gift. Not being a Christian, he laughed thinking that was certainly not a good way to reduce his tax burden. “Give my money away, are you crazy?” So, he asked me like a Pharisee testing my actions, “how much did you give to the church last year?” Although I don’t normally share that information with anyone because that commitment is between me and the Lord, I decided to tell him how much and his mouth dropped. No way! I said yes way! What an idiot, right? Wrong!

I tell you this story, not to seek glory for there is no glory to be had but the glory of the Lord, rather to give an example of what it is like to see the stewardship response of a person who does not believe in God, a person who worships only the almighty dollar and not the almighty God. And that is mainstream America today. Unless a person turns his/her life to the Lord, they will go to their grave with everything one could imagine from a temporal standpoint, but with nothing but hell to deal with for eternity. And all for the sake of the almighty dollar! How BLIND can one be?

My son Kevin was born on December 15, 1982, at Prince George County Hospital just outside of Washington DC. Although we didn’t know it at the time, he had a problem with his heart. When it manifested itself at the ripe old age of three weeks, Kevin was in very grave condition. He spent much of his first few months of life in Children’s Hospital in Washington, D.C. as they attempted to stabilize his heart. The end result was that the heart problem resulted in oxygen depletion to his brain, and he was diagnosed with significant left and front temporal lobe damage. This controls a person’s mood swings and ability to reason. Damage in these lobes results in decreased verbal memory (words, lists, stories), severe aggression - internally or externally driven, dark or violent thoughts, paranoia, emotional instability, and a host of other problems. That was Kevin. For 15 years, life in the DelCol house was nothing short of hell.

The challenges we faced were beyond description. Over 90% of families who have a child with Kevin’s condition split up. Why not our family? What was different about us? Let me tell you why … because whenever it was too much for us to handle, whenever either of us was headed to the door to walk away from this pain, whenever we wanted to give up, the Lord was there, and he wrapped his arms around us, and He brought us peace. How could I not give back to God what is his anyway? How could I not support his church on earth? How could I not look at myself in the mirror and say, thank you God for you have sustained us through all?

It is stewardship Sunday this week. Many churches will ask (in confidence via a ballot) what you plan to give to support the church for the upcoming year. I pray that the blessings we all receive from our Lord will prompt you to consider a true tithe.

Please join us for worship this and every Sunday at New Hope Church at 22200 Foresthill Rd., Foresthill. CA. 530-367-3650. Service begins at 9:30am with a time of food and fellowship immediately following worship. All are welcome so please come as you are ….

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