being a good steward

15 11 2006

My church is currently teaching on stewardship, and to go with that, here’s a few quotes I have on stewardship (which, by the way, has to do with more than just money).

We are not owners of what we have in this life — we are merely servants / stewards.  Therefore we will have to give an account for what we have done with the resources and relationships that God has given us.

God’s desire is to move your possessions from ownership to stewardship.

Although Scripture doesn’t condemn wealth, it certainly warns against the pursuit of money as an end in itself.  Our Lord strongly denounced putting our confidence in riches as a source of pride and security (Matthew 6:24; Luke 12:15).  Therefore, our prayer should be: “Give me neither poverty nor riches” (Proverbs 30:8).  And what if the Lord blesses us with resources beyond what we need?  The apostle Paul urged believers to work with their hands “what is good, that [they] may have something to give him who has need” (Ephesians 4:28).  That’s the principle of stewardship — sharing our wealth to help others.

Time is swiftly passing by like a vapor.  We must be wise stewards of our time here on earth.  What we do here must impact eternity or we will have wasted our life. ~ Mike McNeely

How we handle money reveals much about our priorities.  That’s why Jesus often talked about money.  One-sixth of the Gospels’ content, including one out of every three parables, touches on stewardship.  Jesus wasn’t a fundraiser.  He dealt with money matters because money matters.  For some of us, though, it matters too much. … We may not think that money means more to us than God does.  But Jesus did not say we must serve God more than we serve money.  The issue isn’t what occupies first place in our life, but whether we serve money at all. … Does your checkbook show that Jesus is the Master in your life? ~ Haddon Robinson

I’m glad my church is teaching on it, because it’s very important, and I think it’s especially needed here in America.  Our society encourages us to spend our money on entertaining ourselves, and not that it’s all wrong to enjoy some clean entertainment, but we will have to give an account to God for what we do with what we have.

We live in the most prosperous nation in the world, yet so many people here are in debt and barely “making it”.  How can there be families with an annual household income over $50,000 a year who are struggling to make all their payments?  (Some would even say this is somewhat poor, if both adults are working, but that is not poor compared to the rest of the world.)  I know that many things here cost more than they do in other countries, but the fact is we choose to buy a lot of stuff that isn’t necessary.  Now, I’m not saying we should eat only rice and beans — I think it’s okay to go out to a nice restaurant and order steak once in a while; but when there are people in need around us and we can’t afford to help them, we need to ask ourselves if that’s really the case.

God wants to bless us and make us prosperous, but with that comes increased responsibility, because He expects us to help others.  I suspect God sometimes withholds financial abundance from someone to keep them from becoming even more focused on self.  If you suddenly received an extra $10,000, would you think mostly of how you can improve your lifestyle or would you think of how you can be a greater blessing to other people with your new-found riches?  Remember that we are stewards of what we receive from God.  Following Jesus includes surrendering all you are and all you have, which includes your bank account.

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