What do you say when the King of the universe who is all powerful, and owns everything on earth, invites you to enter into a life changing relationship with Him. When He says to you, “My
child, if you sacrifice your life, I will bless you beyond your wildest dreams,”
what do you say?
You say yes!
Most young people I
know define stewardship in the narrow sense—from the premise that stewardship
just deals with money. Truth be told, in the broad Biblical sense, it’s really
about a person’s relationship with God in every area of life.
What I would like
to explore here, is the theory that stewardship is indeed more than tithes and
offerings; that stewardship is more than only managing money. When we stop to
really think about it, we recognize that God really is owner of everything we
often claim as ours.
Yes, we struggle applying this to our daily life,
but at least we acknowledge the concept. . .right? We talk about working for
God and managing His resources. But as stewards we are more than God’s
employee—we are partners with Him.
Yes friends, the very God of the universe calls us to “return” to Him to the relationship for which we were created. When we do this, then every part of life becomes an exciting adventure of walking with God."
There are different
types of partnership. Normally, partners are two equals who bring something of
equal value to the relationship. In some cases, one partner is the investor of
money and the other an expert who invests knowledge or know-how.
partnership is a reward for a special service or superior performance. Our
partnership with God, however, is quite different. After all, what can we bring
to this partnership?
God is owner of
all. He gives us abilities and talents. He provides all our resources. He gives
us our very lives.
We really don’t
bring anything of our own to this relationship with God; we merely choose to
accept the great privilege of partnering with Him except for a submissive
heart. God will not force us into this incredible partnership, He merely calls
us. What are we going to say?
What We Can Do
In order to help us
answer God’s call, let’s explore the broader sense of biblical stewardship
using 4 “T”s.
What better way to illustrate the stewardship of time than to go
back to the Bible. More specifically, the Ten Commandments. Look at the Fourth
Commandment. It deals with the Sabbath. This commandment gives us two tests;
first, that we are to work six days and second, that we are to rest on the
seventh day. In other words, the religion we profess makes it as much our duty
to engage our time in work (paid or not) for six days, as it is to rest and
keep the Sabbath holy on the seventh day!
Believe it or not, our health is also an important aspect of
stewardship. We are to balance our lives with regards to labor, rest,
recreation, and diet. 1 Corinthians 6:19, 20 says: “Do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit
who is in you, whom you have from God, and you are not your own? For you were
bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which
Yes indeed, we have all been blessed with special talents and it
is up to us to ask God what they are so we can use them to His honor and glory.
When Christ was ascending to heaven the Bible tells us in Acts 4 that He “. . .gave gifts to men.” This tells me it
is our responsibility to really bless others with the gifts we have been given.
This is the essence of the stewardship of our talents.
This is the aspect of stewardship that we are most familiar; the
stewardship of money. My favorite verse in this regarding is Malachi 3:10: “Bring all the tithes into the
storehouse, that there may be food in My house, and try Me now in this,” says
the Lord of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven and pour
out for you such a blessing that there will not be room enough to receive
My First Car
I remember that a
while back, I really did “try God on this.” I wanted to buy my first car by a
certain date. At this point in my life owning my own car was essential. I had
just moved back home to Zimbabwe, and had been offered a job as an accountant
for the Zimbabwean Union Conference. Public transport was very expensive and
unreliable, and owning a car would make the difference between being able to
get to work or not.
I was on my own,
and had no money of my own. I made a commitment to be faithful in all my tithes
and offerings, and prayed that God would bless me as per His promise in Malachi
could even see how I was struggling, and offered to help me out by lending me
her car for a few months! That really put me under pressure to save up. I put
God to the test, and to my every need, He was faithful.
I lived on a shoestring budget for about 5 months, making many sacrifices, but God did the rest. He really stretched my savings and came through for me."
I lived on a
shoestring budget for about 5 months, making many sacrifices, but God did the
rest. He really stretched my savings and came through for me. The result was I
got my car with almost a month to spare. On top of that, God brought someone
into my life at just that moment an uncle of mine who
reminded me that because I was a recently returning resident, I was eligible
for a waiver of import duties on an imported car. This reminder saved me about
a third of the total cost of purchasing my car.
I know it was the
Lord who guided me through this whole process. I am so grateful for His
The end of this
story is remarkable! I got my car with almost a month to spare, and to top it
all, I wasn’t required to pay a cent on the import duties I was expecting to
have to pay. This saved almost one third of the total cost of the vehicle. What
Yes friends, the
very God of the universe calls us to “return” to Him to the relationship for
which we were created. When we do this, then every part of life becomes an
exciting adventure of walking with God. Try saying, “yes” today. Try applying
partnership with Him to each moment and each action in every aspect of your
life, and feel His blessing.