I don’t know about you, but when I think of stewardship I usually think about money and the responsibility that we have to use God’s financial gifts in a way that glorifies Him. But, actually, we are called to be good stewards of all of the gifts that God has given us – including the gifts that are intangible.

At St. Michael’s God has shown His faithfulness to us in many ways, but in the past year He has given us new opportunities for outreach to our parishioners, our community, and even outside our borders. The St. Michael’s Pickleball courts are full and are enjoyed by both parishioners and members of the wider community.  In addition, these courts have offered us yet another way to engage with our neighbors at Carlsbad-by-the-Sea with an activity that reaches across generations. On the other end of the spectrum, St. Michael’s Children’s Ministry has developed a relationship with Vida Joven de México, a home for vulnerable children in Tijuana, México which has provided the opportunity for our parishioners to pour into young lives across the border. Finally, our continued participation in the Carlsbad Music Festival is community engagement at its best: sharing the blessing of our campus and providing a witness for Christian hospitality in support of the vibrant arts community in Carlsbad.

So, what does it mean to be a good steward of these (and other) outreach opportunities? I believe that our first responsibility is to recognize them and acknowledge that they are gifts from God.  Secondly, we need to seize the opportunity before us – to meet new people, deepen relationships, and help people plug into life at St. Michael’s. That’s not just a job for the greeters and the ushers. Each of the opportunities listed above has the potential to bring people onto our campus who might not otherwise come. God then presents us with an opportunity to meet them wherever they are in their spiritual journey. In these interactions, members of St. Michael’s will receive the spiritual blessings that flow from the practice of serving others out of obedience to Christ.

Written by Vestry Member, Erica Martin.