The word stewardship has been used as a buzzword by different groups to convey the idea that they have been entrusted to manage and care for various aspects of our lives. From businesses to private charities to governmental agencies and to religious organizations, stewardship is emphasized more and more. The goal of the organization is to convince their own members and those outside their membership that they should join in their efforts to be good stewards.
For example, many environmental groups see themselves as “stewards of the earth.” Through public relations, they promote their efforts to try to convince others to follow their lead. Many of these same groups then lobby the government to impose their will on others. As a result, sometimes groups have competing goals and interests. The stewards of business and the stewards of the environment often clash with each other.
Another aspect of stewardship lies in the fact that sometimes people are just not good stewards of the resources they have been given. Many times the resources are squandered and wasted. Poor stewardship can lead to the demise of their group.
Long before stewardship became a buzzword, the Bible emphasizes the stewardship we have been entrusted with: the gospel. Paul was writing to the Corinthian church about their poor stewardship of the gifts, talents, abilities, and financial resources of the church. As a result, some in the church accused Paul of being a poor steward.
Paul reminded the Corinthian church that he had preached to them, not to receive payment, which he could have earned, but because he had been entrusted by God to preach the gospel. Paul looked at this obligation as a form of stewardship. God had entrusted him to use his talents, gifts, and abilities to further the gospel.
As believers, we are all stewards of the gospel. We all have been given time, talents, treasure, and a testimony. We are to be good stewards of each of these areas in our life. God prefers that we do this willingly.
God wants us to be good stewards individually and collectively as a church. He wants us to work together to accomplish more by reaching the next generations of people in our community with the gospel. We are in this together and we should work together willingly to do just that.
The NLT translation states the above verse this way: “If I were doing this on my own initiative, I would deserve payment. But I have no choice, for God has given me this sacred trust.” RoS, we do not have a choice, God has given us the sacred trust of evangelizing our community and making disciples. The question is: are we being good stewards?
I love you and it’s a privilege to be your pastor.