Honor the Lord with your wealth, with the firstfruits of all your crops; then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine. Proverbs 3:9-10
Our lives are all about stewardship – taking care of what has been entrusted to us in terms of our time, our talents, and our treasures. How we end up taking care of them really comes down to our understanding of ownership in those areas of our lives.
In his book The Treasure Principle Randy Alcorn gives these stewardship principles.
- Principle #1: God owns everything. I’m his money manager.
- Principle #2: My heart always goes where I put God’s money.
- Principle #3: Heaven, not earth, is my home.
- Principle #4: I should live not for the dot (my present life on earth) but for the line (heading on into eternity).
- Principle #5: Giving is the only antidote to materialism.
- Principle #6: God prospers me not to raise my standard of living, but to raise my standard of giving.
Do you believe he is right about these truths? I do. BUT, I must admit that they are easily “believed” but so hard to incorporate into my daily living. To be honest:
- I find myself too often seeing God’s stuff – loaned to me to use for His glory – as my stuff to do with as I please. Not quite being a good manager.
- Occasionally God has taken a back seat in my life to the stuff He has generously loaned to me.
- Sadly I have occasionally realized that my aim in life has been for this world instead of my eternal home – living stupidly for the temporary dot and not for the unending line.
- And to add to my poor management I forget sometimes that I’m most like our Lord Jesus Christ when I’m giving.
How are you doing in your stewardship of God’s stuff? Each second of your life is His gift to you. Are you living for Him or for yourself? Your natural talents and your spiritual gifts have been given to you to make you useful in this world and in God’s kingdom. How’s that going? Is the Lord pleased with the way you are honoring Him with the abilities He has given to you? And how about all of God’s stuff that He has allowed you to acquire? You know, His house, His car(s), His money, His possessions, His children loaned to you, His job, His _______. Are you managing His belongings in the ways He desires? It all belongs to Him – right?
As we near Christmas our minds and hearts, hopefully will be turning to God’s greatest gift – Jesus Christ. Was His Son a good steward of God the Father’s gifts of time, talents, and treasures? Several times during the Lord’s earthly life the Father said He was well pleased with Jesus’ stewardship. God even put an explanation point on Christ’s death by raising Him from the grave. Do you think your stewardship deserves a “Well done” from God?
Here is what Paul says, “This, then, is how you ought to regard us: as servants of Christ and as those entrusted with the mysteries God has revealed. Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful” (1 Corinthians 4:1-2). As we are close to ending one year and beginning a new one, do you think you need to join me in confessing poor management of God’s stuff and making a fresh commitment to be a faithful steward? We are and will be held accountable to the One who has entrusted His precious stuff to us.
For Your Glory Lord – Pastor Steve