The job of supervising or taking care of something, such as an
organization or property.” That’s a definition I found online about the
word “Stewardship.” I’d like us to take a few minutes to think about
that definition, to what it means to you and me and to our church, as we
live out our faith in following our Lord Jesus Christ.
Taking care of something – often, when we hear the word
“Stewardship” our minds directly go to money. We’ve all seen the
advertisements for Capital One – “what’s in your wallet?” We’re
groomed from a very early age about possessions. There’s the cute
definition of “Mine” from a baby’s point of view. A few of them are:
If I like it, it’s mine.
If I’m holding it, it’s mine.
If you’re holding it and I want it, it’s mine.
If you were playing with it and put it down, it’s mine.
If I gave it to you and have since changed my mind, it’s mine.
But there’s a big difference between “Mine” – that is, it belongs to you and me, and “stewardship” – that it belongs to God, who has entrusted it to you and me. And while there are differences between the two, the one thing they have in common is that in both, we’re the responsible party.
The parable of the Ten Minas (Luke 19:11-26) tells us about the importance of what we do with what God has entrusted to us. We begin with the premise that everything we have is from God – our own lives, our families, our jobs, our possessions – everything. And everything includes our relationship with God through Jesus. It includes the presence and power of His Holy Spirit in us and around us. In the parable, Jesus teaches about the responsibility each of us have, to wisely use what we have from God – our faith and relationship with Him, our possessions that He’s entrusted to us, our relationships with each other – and our church and its ministries and mission. In the midst of this, He has given us spiritual gifts and talents – unique things that are ours to use for
Him and for each other.
All of it falls under the umbrella of being good stewards – good stewards of His grace to us in Jesus Christ, and in using our relationships and possessions for His glory and for the good of those around us – our families, our church family, our friends, neighbors – everyone! In that stewardship is our faith – our daily walk with God, our prayer life, our worship of Him, and how we share our relationship with Him with others around us.
And in that stewardship are our possessions – realizing that all we have belongs to God and it is our responsibility to use those possessions wisely and generously, all for God’s glory and honor.
Using them wisely and generously means recognizing the needs of those around us – remembering the poor, the elderly, those less fortunate. Good stewardship is providing generously for their needs. Using our possessions wisely and generously means recognizing the ministry needs around us as well – people need Jesus, it’s as simple as that. They need Him as their Lord and Savior. They need Him as their friend.
They need to realize that need – and we need to share it with them – not only on Sunday mornings, but any and every other day of the week.
Pray about your possessions – recognize that they are God’s possessions, given to us to use responsibly and generously for Him and for His church. Orenco Church has so much to do – and relies solely on the generosity of its members and friends to financially accomplish the work God has called us to do. And in advance of your tithes and offerings, thank you!