Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Being Stewards of God’s Resources

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JoHannah Reardon[1] shared, “The word stewardship comes from the Greek word oikenomous, which means somebody who manages a household. A person doesn't own the household but manages it.” Simply stated, we don’t own anything we think we own. Thus, the truth of God’s word rings true for everyone, “for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world” (1 Timothy 6:7 ESV).

In highlighting the role of being stewards, notice what the Scriptures say:

1.     God made us stewards: Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. James 1:17
2.     God provision for being a steward: But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33
3.     God’s expectation from His stewards: Serve with good will, as to the Lord and not to men. Ephesians 6:7

The first principle in becoming a successful steward of God recognizes the simple fact that stewardship is God’s idea. Therefore, our role is instituting it in our lives systematically. It occurs when God’s people apply biblical stewardship in every aspect of their lives: “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:21). Dr. Jim Eckman[2] shared A.W. Tozer’s four questions in revealing where our idea of treasure revolves around:

1.     What do we value most?
2.     What would we most hate to lose?
3.     What do our thoughts turn to most frequently when we are free to think of what we will?
4.     What affords us the greatest pleasure?

Next, stewardship is God’s initiative. Therefore, our role is influencing others personally in understanding the concept. It occurs when God’s people let others know about biblical stewardship of God’s resources: “As for the rich in this present age, charge them not to be haughty, nor to set their hopes on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly provides us with everything to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17).

Somebody said an interesting view of money:

Money has been defined as that something which buys everything but happiness and takes a man everywhere but to heaven. But money used in the right way can confer a great deal of happiness and be the means of starting many a person on the path to heaven.

Finally, stewardship is God’s invitation to living free of greed and grace-filled living. Therefore, our role is impacting every generation purposely. It occurs when God’s people take responsibility for seeing people learn about biblical stewardship, thus, weakening the work of the enemy and love of money:  “For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs” (1 Timothy 6:10).

In the end, here’s what we need to remember, according to Harvey Nowland:[3]

Christians need to understand that opportunities to achieve God’s agenda in building His kingdom involves not only our material possessions, but also our abilities, knowledge, skills and relationships. To make it really simple – everything from your backyard and bank account to your mind and body - is a resource that you must manage for God. No false humility required here, you are an important member of God’s management team – stewardship.

Let’s talk again!

[1] https://www.christianitytoday.com/biblestudies/articles/churchhomeleadership/accountablegod.html
[2] https://graceuniversity.edu/iip/2011/02/faithful-stewards-of-gods-resources/
[3] https://www.focusonthefamily.com/faith/faith-based-family-finances/stewardship/stewardship-being-co-managers-with-god