For over 75 years Green Lake Presbyterian Church has faithfully proclaimed God’s Word in Seattle and beyond. Starting as a neighborhood children’s Sunday School, our community has since made thousands of disciples, planted churches throughout the Northwest, and equipped and sent dozens of missionaries across the globe.
This is a rich and beautiful legacy, a story of God’s faithfulness to His Church. But it’s also a testimony to the power of generosity. Over the last eight decades, God’s people at Green Lake have understood and supported the Kingdom- centered mission of Jesus Christ and His gospel.
At its core, Seeds: Planting for the Kingdom is an initiative focused on continuing this legacy for another generation. As the gospel frees our hearts to be generous it opens with it all the potentialities of God’s Kingdom. Consider Jesus’ parable of the mustard seed. “[It] is the smallest of all the seeds on earth, yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes larger than all the garden plants and puts out large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade” (Mark 4:31-32). What a powerful image of the Kingdom!
This is what we believe God is calling us to: to plant, cultivate, and grow the Kingdom of God in our midst. To be a church where the weary can find rest and shade for their souls, where disciples are made, and where the good of the city is sought and realized.
— Pastor David Richmon
Green Lake Presbyterian Church
Generosity and the Gospel
True generosity is inspired and shaped by the gospel. God’s lavish love and grace towards His people should influence the way we steward our money, and encourage us to be generous with all that God has given us.
How does the gospel transform us into living radically generous lives? Jesus talks of this in terms of treasure: “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” In this association, Jesus draws a direct connection between the status of our hearts and the desires of our hearts. We often look to worldly treasures (wealth, knowledge, time) to be our saviors. But what if instead of living in pursuit of the treasures of our hearts, we seek to know the one who treasures us? The gospel liberates us from these false gods while providing a perfect Savior in Jesus, who is our ultimate provider and the sustainer of life. In 2 Corinthians 8, Paul talks about generosity as an “act of grace” that offers us the opportunity to access riches far greater than anything the world has to offer: “For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his poverty might become rich.”
By releasing our desires to Christ, we too can access riches that far surpass any worldly definition of the term. Generosity opens the door to denying our own self- sufficiency and trusting in His promise to be our ultimate provider.
A life characterized by generous living doesn’t develop from coercion or manipulation, but can only grow from a heart that has been radically changed by the gospel; the truest and most fulfilling currency is not the treasures of this world, but the fact that we are Christ’s ultimate treasure.
Fruit of Generosity
Not only does God call us to live generously, but He promises us joy and blessing in return. He even challenges us to test Him in this promise (Malachi 3:10). What does this blessing look like?
In 2 Corinthians 9, Paul describes the reward for generosity as a Harvest of Righteousness:
“He who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will supply and multiply your seed for sowing and increase the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way to be generous in every way, which through us will produce thanksgiving to God.”
We aren’t promised riches or wealth as a reward, but joy stemming from participation in the Kingdom. James describes us as “a kind of firstfruits of His creatures,” living as those who know a New Kingdom is here and who strive to participate in it.
Jesus told us that this amazing work starts with faith the size of a mustard seed. Our small efforts to follow Christ and live as the firstfruits of His Kingdom are used to grow a beautiful Church that provides shelter to all those who call upon the Lord. Green Lake’s mission is to be an urban resource church that seeks to:
Here we are in Seattle teaching and training God’s people using the means of grace: the Word, the sacraments, and prayer. We live together as He has called us.
Beautify the City...
We take what we are given and step out into the city to call more people to join us. We invest our time, love, and service in our city. In this way we...
Grow the Kingdom...
We lay up treasures in Heaven and pray to see His Kingdom come!
Planting the Seed
In addition to money being a symbolic indicator of our hearts, money is also a very practical resource for Kingdom building. Through planting seeds of generosity, we actively participate in the work of the Kingdom. Imagine the ways that an increase in generosity would enable Green Lake to grow in our mission to make disciples, beautify the city, and grow the Kingdom.
Money cannot go out unless it comes in. As a congregation, we will be taking this time to consider our individual journeys with generosity and stewardship while prayerfully considering how the Spirit is prompting us to grow.
Money is a tool. We don’t have to work hard to dream of all the things we would love to see accomplished for the Kingdom! Increased generosity will enable our congregation to grow in our Core Values:
• Spiritual Formation
• Covenant Community
• Mercy & Outreach
• Church Planting
Increased funding in the coming years would support a number of key projects and significantly increase our ministry capacity. At Green Lake, we have been blessed by an incredible legacy of generosity of those who came before us. Let’s imagine the legacy we can leave for those who will call Green Lake their home ten, twenty, even fty years from now.
Put our hands to the plow and enter the fields. Our acts of generosity don’t end with a drop in the offering plate. A budgetary increase is no good if it isn’t accompanied by a congregation full of servant hearts, mobilized to be the hands and feet of the church as God’s avenue for blessing the world.