Good Managers for Jesus
By Linda Koh
As Christian parents, we want our children to learn how to be God’s faithful stewards. Children are bombarded with materialistic messages every day that often lead to a sense of entitlement and dissatisfaction with life. Stewardship encourages an attitude of gratitude. Moreover, very early in life, between ages six and ten, children form their attitudes about sharing. Thus, teaching them the spirit of giving and sharing during these formative years helps our children learn that stewardship is a way of life. Every decision we make about how we use our time, talents or treasure is a stewardship decision.
"In addition to giving, our children need to learn how to plan their spending. Teach them how to make good choices and develop a monthly budget."
What Are We to Manage?
After God created Adam and Eve, He gave them the responsibility of taking care of God’s world. They were to manage, to plan and to control their environment. They were to care for the animals and birds, to keep the garden attractive and to provide a home for themselves and their future children (Gen. 1:26-28; 2:15). In our world today, we want our children to recognize that we are to manage what God has given to us:
We need to teach children to put aside a tithe, 1/10 of what they have received from their pocket money, special birthday or Christmas money, etc. Gratitude to God can be shown by also giving a portion of their money as a free-will offering which might include also putting money aside to help those in need, such as victims of natural disasters.
In addition to giving, our children need to learn how to plan their spending. Teach them how to make good choices and develop a monthly budget. Making wise choices in purchasing a good product rather than being influenced by advertisements is a great value to inculcate in children today.
Finally, we must not forget to teach our children how to save up for the future. Proverbs 21:20 (LB) tells us that “The wise man saves for the future; the foolish man spends whatever he gets.” It is imperative that they need to live within their means and not get into debt.
"The wise man saves for the future; the foolish man spends whatever he gets."
Our Body It is important to help children understand 1 Corinthians 6:19 where Paul reminds us that our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. We are to manage our body well by eating right, exercising, sleeping enough hours, drinking enough water and living a balanced life.
Children and teens are especially vulnerable to peer pressure in regard to trying alcohol, smoking and drugs. Parents need to provide a great deal of guidance for these youngsters so they can choose to live healthy, happy lives and be of service to the church and to society.
Our Time God has given to everyone 24 hours a day. God wants us to use our time to serve him and to serve others. We are not to waste it on ourselves by spending too much time watching TV or playing computer games. Parents can guide their children by providing limits for time spent in watching TV, using the internet, and playing computer games.
Our Talents and Abilities
God has given every one different gifts and talents and we want our children to use their talents to serve others, their church and their country. Acquaint them with 1 Peter 4:10 which teaches that each one should use their gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.
"Children need to learn an appreciation for God’s earth; how to help care for it and keep it clean."
Children need to learn an appreciation for God’s earth; how to help care for it and keep it clean. They can learn to recycle materials, pick up trash and not litter. Children need to respect property like their school, the church, the city and the roads. We can involve our children in special projects in the community like picking up trash at the beach.
Parents, it is never too soon to start to teach our children to be good managers for Jesus. Set a good example. Then, whether in small ways or performing simple tasks, children can begin to learn what it means to be good managers in God’s kingdom! Parents, it is never too soon to start teaching our children to be good managers for Jesus. Set a good example. Then, whether in small ways or performing simple tasks, children can begin to learn what it means to be good managers in God’s kingdom!