TODAY'S WORD FOR Monday, June 11, 2018:
A manager or trustee; overseer; administrator; a chief servant; guard.
As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.
I Peter 4:10.
The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it.
I Corinthians 10:26
KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE:
God is the source of all things. All of us are absolutely dependent on Him. All that we have has been given to us by God and everything that is on this earth belongs to Him. God has given us the responsibility to manage and use the resources He has given us. We are His stewards (managers) and God wants us to be good stewards of what He has given us. God holds us responsible to use the gifts that He has given us wisely and manage them well.
One of the areas of stewardship that the Bible addresses is our finances and God’s mandate on tithing. One of the most important things we wanted to teach our children early on in their young lives was the importance of being a good steward of the finances God gave them.
We have always practiced the principle of giving the first ten percent (a tithe) of our earnings back to God and more as we were able. God’s purpose in tithing is to teach us to put God first. Setting aside the first tenth of our earnings teaches us to value God above all others and reminds us that all we have belongs to Him. Parents best teach their children by example. Giving is a natural response of love. An offering is what is given over and above a tithe. Tithing is a demonstration of our obedience to God and our love for Him.
In Malachi 3:8-12 Malachi had to rebuke God’s people because they were not honoring God and were not being good stewards. They were ignoring God’s commandments and had stopped giving their tithes and offerings to Him. He tells them that they are robbing God when they withhold their tithes and offerings. He also tells them God will bless them if they bring their tithes and offerings to the Lord. Malachi challenges them to test God and see if it is not so. We can testify that it is so. There is great blessing that comes from giving to God what is rightfully His.
The second area of stewardship is the talents that God has given us. God has given each of us certain talents and abilities to use to expand God’s Kingdom. Jesus expects us to use these talents to bring others to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.
The third area of stewardship is our time. God expects us to give of our time to others. We have learned that nothing is more important than spending time in growing our relationship with God and serving Him. Not only is it our responsibility but it should be our desire to spend quality time with our children and family. Time invested for bonding, listening, guiding, teaching and learning with your children brings great rewards.
God also expects us to give time regularly to our spouses, to our extended families, to our neighbors and to the world we live in. Most people today spend their time on themselves. They watch TV; read the paper, magazines and books; play games on the computer, cell phone or iPad, communicate on face book or just get on the internet for hours. These are not bad things necessarily, as we all need down time, but the danger is to become so consumed by them that we neglect to do what God wants us to do.
God wants you to be a good steward of your time and invest it in people through your family, your church, your workplace, your neighborhood or through a mission project to a needy and hurting world.
In Luke 12:42 Jesus shares with us a parable about the good and bad stewards and that each one was rewarded according to his faithfulness and obedience. How good a steward we are of what God has given to us will determine our heavenly rewards. A good steward will work diligently and be obedient to his master’s commands. If our gifts and talents are limited, God does not hold us responsible for over and above what He has given us. We are responsible for how we use the talent He has given us.
We learn through this study that we need to be faithful to God as to how we use the talents, time and material blessings that God has given to us.
God is a generous God. Not only does He provide for all of our needs, but He gave His very own son to die for our sins to give us eternal life. Doesn’t He then have every right to expect us to be good stewards of all that He has given us?
Our memory verse for this week is found in Isaiah 40:31.
But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint.
Thank You for the talent, material blessings and time that You have entrusted to me. Work in my life to mold me to be the steward You want me to be each and every day. Help me to use what I have to bring honor and glory to Your name.
These Family Devotional thoughts are written by Dr. Ken Phillips, Executive Director of America's Hunger
Solution, and his wife Dottie. Ken has had ministry positions
with The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, World Vision, Youth For Christ, World Opportunities International,
and World Bible Society. He also has consulted for more than 30 Christian ministries in management and stewardship
development. They have published a book called No Problems Only Situations that discusses the journey of their family.
Ken and Dottie have been married for 60 years, and have 6 children, 20 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren. Their
second book, TODAY'S WORD, includes 365 daily
devotionals and is now available for only $10.
Ken & Dottie Phillips
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