A typical dictionary definition of the word “stewardship” is, ‘The careful and responsible management of something entrusted to one’s care’. When you realize that God has created, given and entrusted ALL things of this world (excepting, of course, the faith He places into our hearts through the Holy Spirit), this implies we have the responsibility of carefully managing all of that.
And so it is – and even though that comes from an earthly dictionary, Scripture supports every word of that definition. But if that is so, how is it that the word “stewardship” has become associated almost solely with money and the raising of it by churches? How is it that an activity that should be joyful, a response with a grateful heart rooted in the Gospel has become one rooted in the old demands and schemes of the Law? How is it that a God who has given us so much in our lives has been reduced to one who gives us primarily a cash allowance and the only part of our life’s stewardship that matters is if we are conforming to a mathematical equation of giving back?
I’m going to say it if no one else will – THAT IS NOT STEWARDSHIP!! If we are going to live our lives in the living, loving care of what God has first given us, our eyes have got to quit looking first in our pockets, and instead start looking instead into the world and reality(ies) that God has placed us in. Once we do that, then we will see everything from money, gifts, family, but most of all, FAITH!
That cannot be over-stated. THE most important thing God has given anyone is faith. And even though we are not involved in the process of coming to faith, our managing of that faith once it is a part of our lives is most definitely an integral part (and the most important part) of our stewardship as the manager of the generosity of the ultimate owner, God.
I could go on and on about the various aspects of our lives in which we have a “stewardship” as we show in our lives our gratefulness to our Lord. And indeed, I will do that in a series of messages throughout the month. In fact, beyond, the streamed audio message, I will also be placing into the “Pastor’s Message” section the PowerPoint of each of the sermons, so you can at least catch a summary of it.
Elsewhere, I will also be placing some weekly “commitment cards” based on our weekly theme. Please check back each week to get the newest one, and join us in committing the month – and the year – to our loving and Gospel-motivated response to ALL God has given us.