Yes, yes, we’ve all heard it before…”It seems that all churches ever talk about is money.” So, let’s set the record straight... At West Sound money is not the only thing we talk about… in fact, if one simply added up every word spoken by our pastors and teachers, money would come in way at the bottom of the list. So, that’s one thing set straight. Here’s another, at West Sound we should talk about money much more than we do. However, since we are keenly aware of the inaccurate assumption mentioned above – i.e. that’s all we ever do – we’re inclined not to do so. In contrast, our Lord Jesus was not so inclined. Should you like to make a study of what he had to say concerning finances, try reading through the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. You will find that Jesus teaches most often about the Kingdom of God. And what topic would you suppose comes in second? That’s right… money, material possessions, and how to handle them. He taught about giving, lending, borrowing, paying, investing, taxes, tithes, and more. In fact, sixteen of the thirty-eight recorded parables of Jesus included money issues. If that’s not enough, one out of every ten verses in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John include money/materialism talk. So, what’s the point of all this? The point is simple…and it can be stated several ways:
Stewardship is a Christ-like act of obedience Stewardship helps the Body of Christ achieve its objectives Stewardship is merely one of many Christ-like characteristics we should cheerfully strive toward And, most importantly, stewardship is one among many ways we can worship our God.
Here’s yet another -- stewardship is not just about money. A true steward of the resources God gives is a person who delights in managing all aspects of his or her life for the greater good of God’s work in creation and history. Of course, this will include godly management of our material treasure, but it will also include the godly management of our talent and time as well. Worship includes all three…giving cheerfully, sacrificially, and intelligently of our time, our talent, and our treasure. If God is truly first in our lives then it will be reflected in how we manage our schedules: who and what gets the lion’s share and who and what gets the leftovers? If God is truly first in our lives then it will be reflected in how we manage our skills, expertise, abilities, and passions: who and what benefits most and who and what benefits less? If God is truly first in our lives then it will be reflected in how we manage our money and material possessions: who is it and what is it that motivates us to use money?