Handle with care.
We play different roles, and have the resources needed to ensure that we are efficient and productive. Whether we are parents, employees, or students, we must meet our goals without wasting time and resources. We are stewards of all that God has given us—family, environment, home, children, jobs, income, time, talents, and so on. Good stewards keep inventory of what they have, and make the most of it, faithfully.
10 “Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much. 11 So if you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with true riches? 12 And if you have not been trustworthy with someone else’s property, who will give you property of your own? 13 No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money (Luke 16).”
Our approach to small tasks determines how we tackle bigger ones. If we can’t do the little things well, we will not be diligent with the big ones. When small responsibilities are done haphazardly, they eventually affect other important ones. When one is careless about keeping time, meeting deadlines, replenishing supplies, cleaning after themselves, or not taking what isn’t theirs, they will inconvenience others. If we are assiduous about the aforementioned and other little responsibilities, we become detail-oriented and organized.
God will only entrust us with what we are faithful with. He has supplied us with earthly resources, and we must be good stewards of what rightfully belongs to Him. We will either serve God or ourselves. When we think of our income as belonging to God, we will not fritter it away on excesses. When we consider our children as belonging to God, we will nurture them in godly ways and love them as He would. When we see our jobs as a place to serve God, we will be on time, do a full-day’s work and not take home office supplies. We must be good stewards here, to inherit the true riches in eternity. We can’t serve God and our own interests; we will be more invested in one, or the other. We will give an account of how we handled all that God has given us. Our reward will be commensurate with our faithfulness, in managing what He has given us.
28 Let him who steals steal no longer, but rather let him labor, working with his hands what is good, that he may have something to give him who has need (Ephesians 4).
It is more noble to earn a living than to live on what belongs to someone else. Honest work is rewarding especially if it also meets the needs of others. When we use our hands to do what is good, with what we have earned, we will find our purpose in the work we do. Giving some of what we have worked for shows we are willing to care for the needs of others. Giving what we have not worked for is less gratifying because it doesn’t involve sacrificing what we need, for another’s needs. Our earnings reflect God’s Blessings. God facilitates our ability to make wealth; He gives us good health, strength to work, protection throughout the day, the know-how and the environment that is conducive for work. Using the fruit of our labor to do good is sharing God’s Goodness with others.
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, 5 having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His Will (Ephesians 1).
What have you done with the spiritual blessings you have in Christ? You were chosen in Christ, before the foundation of the world was formed. Everything that is in Christ has been given to you. God was pleased, according to His Will, to give you every spiritual blessing in Christ, in the heavenly places. Your inheritance is sure and guaranteed, prior to the inception of the world. Since you were chosen to be a child of God in Christ, you have a role to play. With every spiritual gift given to you, you must be diligent—blameless and holy in managing it. By loving God and others you are able to utilize every spiritual blessing to please God.
We can’t meet others’ needs without love, mercy, compassion, joy, gentleness, patience and self control. These are blessings we have received from God that stimulate us to love others. Love disciplines us to be good stewards of material and spiritual blessings. When we love, we will be blameless with what is entrusted to us. We are already chosen and predestined to be sons and daughters in Christ; so we are more than capable of expressing Who He is, with everything we have.
12 “Both riches and honor come from You, and You reign over all. In Your Hand is Power and Might; In Your Hand it is to make great and to give strength to all. 13 Now therefore, our God, we thank You and praise Your Glorious Name. 14 But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to offer as willingly as this? For all things come from You, and of Your Own we have given You. 15 For we are aliens and pilgrims before You, as were all our fathers. Our days on Earth are as a shadow, and without hope (1 Chronicles 29).”
How much are you willing to give back to God? All things come from Him; so we should be willing to give generously for His Glory. David and the people of Israel gave willingly for the building of God’s temple. They supplied materials of gold, silver, bronze and other metals, linen, animals for sacrifice, and all that was necessary for God’s temple and services. David acknowledged that they didn’t have a right to what belonged to God. We should not cling to material wealth because we will not die with it. This is God’s Earth and we are only here for as long as He wants us to be. We should bring our offerings from what God has given us, willingly, and with thanksgiving. True worship is glorifying God with praise and substance. God gives us the strength and ability to do great things. Since our days are as a shadow, a mist that eventually fades, we should spend our days in worship and gratitude. In the grave, there’s nothing we can offer God—not praise, glory, adoration or any service.
We don’t have to be wealthy to become stewards of God’s blessings. Every good thing we enjoy has been given to us by God, for a limited time. Whatever is at hand is ours to manage and use productively. We have to acknowledge God with every responsibility we have been given. We also must not withhold what He has blessed us with from honoring Him or meeting the needs of others. We are stewards of our marriages, families, jobs, time, income, homes and our very own lives.
When we love God and others, we will be wary of self-aggrandizement; we will be humble and faithful with all that we have. We have an inheritance in Christ, Our Lord: true riches and eternal blessings. We should be blameless and holy, in love, with earthly blessings. We can be faithful in maintaining the little things that make everything else run like clockwork. No responsibility is unprofitable; it benefits us as well as others. Make the best of every opportunity, by not wasting it.
24 “Then he who had received the one talent came and said, ‘Lord, I knew you to be a hard man, reaping where you have not sown, and gathering where you have not scattered seed. 25 And I was afraid, and went and hid your talent in the ground. Look, there you have what is yours.’
26 “But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. 27 So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. 28 So take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents. 29 ‘For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. 30 And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth (Matthew 25).’”