Gravity is an invisible force which pulls and holds us down to earth. It’s probably something which we don’t really think about very often. We are beginning our yearly discussions on stewardship, and what we are using as our focus this year is this idea of gravity, based on the book Defying Gravity: Break Free from the Culture of More, by United Methodist pastor and scholar Rev. Tom Berlin. Why gravity? Well, just like there is gravity in our world, there is also something known as financial gravity. Financial gravity is the force which compels us to pursue our basic necessities. Now, this is not necessarily a bad thing, but it becomes dangerous when we allow this “pull” to control us – so much so that we become victims of materialism and fail to practice good stewardship of the time, talents, resources, and energy which God has given us.
As we read in Matthew 19, this struggle with financial gravity is not new – it dates back to the times of Jesus. For in this passage we discover a young man struggling with the tension between the kingdom of God and the kingdom of self. And the same challenge is present in our world today; for we too feel the pull to live in the kingdom of self as opposed to God’s kingdom. It happens when we fall victim to materialism. Thus, the challenge becomes to break free from the force of financial gravity and instead choose to live in God’s kingdom. And in so doing, we become good stewards of our time, talents, resources, and energy. May we all defy gravity, let go, and submit ourselves to Christ!