What comes to mind when you think of the word stewardship? Being more responsible with your finances? Having a home that is spotless and clean? Leaving the house early so you’ll never be late to anything? All of these are great characteristics to have when it comes to being a good steward, but that’s just the surface level. Stewardship is way bigger than we think. It’s much more than wealth, cleanliness, and time management. Stewardship is about managing what God has given us.
When you own something, you can do whatever you want with the item that you own. If you own a house you can paint the walls red, change all the light bulbs green, and put a leopard print couch in the living room. If you own a business you can choose to go to work at 7 in the morning, 3 in the afternoon, or take the whole day off and not come in at all. Whatever it is, if you own it, you are free to do whatever you want to do with it. We tend to use this same mindset with our lives. This is my life and I can do whatever I want with it. You only get one right? So why not live it up and enjoy it? Only part of that statement is true though. We can do whatever we want with our lives, but we don’t own our lives. We’re just managers. Our life has been given to us by God. We come into this world with nothing and we leave out this world with nothing. What happens in the middle is God giving us the gift of life. Throughout our life God assigns us different responsibilities that he trusts us to handle. If he sees that you’re being a good manager (or steward) over the responsibilities that he has given you, he seeks to promote you.
With promotion comes bigger responsibilities though (Luke 12:48 & Matthew 25:29). Biggie was on to something when he rapped about “Mo Money Mo Problems.” What he viewed as problems was probably a result of mishandled responsibility though. We’ve all had that one manager at a job that doesn’t do anything. You go to look for them when you have a problem and you can’t find them. You ask them for help and you can tell that they have no clue what their doing by the answer that they give. They tell you to get to work, while they sit in the back office on their phone. They’re just terrible managers. They definitely have the potential to be great since they were able to get the job, but they just don’t utilize themselves well. We are the same way when it comes to managing the things that God has given us. He gave us these gifts because he knows we can do it. We just choose not to use them wisely or at all. How are you handling the responsibilities that God has currently placed in your life? Are you being a good manager, or are you being like that one bad manager we all know so well?
A thing we tend to do a lot is look at the talents, gifts, and abilities that other people have and compare it with our own. If we don’t measure up to them, we view our lives as worthless until we finally get that promotion.
He has 100k followers on Instagram, 200k monthly listeners on Spotify, and he lives in California! There’s no way I can do anything with my lil ole voice from this small town in Mississippi. Ima just wait until the right opportunity comes.
God doesn’t want you to wait until the right opportunity comes for you to use your gifts. He wants you to utilize it now. He wants to see how faithful you are to the things he has given you. We see an example of this in The Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25:14-30). To make a long story short, a man was going away on a long trip and he entrusted his servants with talents. A talent was a unit of weight and value back in the ancient times—it was basically money. Let’s change the word to dollars for now. He gave 5000 dollars to one servant, 2000 dollars to another, and 1000 dollars to the last servant. When he came back from his trip, the servant with the 5000 dollars ended up making 5000 more dollars. The servant with the 2000 dollars also doubled the amount that he started with. The last servant started with 1000 dollars and ended with 1000 dollars.
The man got mad that the third servant didn’t earn any extra money so he ended up giving his money to the first servant. The third servant was put to death for his actions. Yikes! Pretty harsh right? Many might look at the parable and think that it’s unfair since one servant was given 5000 dollars, while another servant was only given 1000 dollars. How do you expect the servant with 1000 dollars to do anything? He has way less money than all of them! The thing is, the parable isn’t about how you start; it’s about how you finish. Well if he was given 5000 dollars like the first servant, he would have used it better! Would he? At the end of the day, even though they started off with different amounts of money, the first two servants both doubled what they started with. They were good at managing what was given to them. The last guy started with less and couldn’t even double that. What makes you so sure that he would’ve been able to do more if they all started at the same level? What makes you so sure that you can do more with your gift if you were at a different level?
There might be a reason why you aren't progressing to another level. God might not trust you to have more gifts. He’s not making use of the little bit of equipment and clients that I have already given him. How can I trust him with better equipment and a massive amount of clients? We have to make better use of the resources that God has given us. In the game of Monopoly, each player starts out with $1500. How you manage that money is the key to winning the game. You can buy up every property you land on in the beginning, but if you don’t make any money off them, you’re gonna go bankrupt. You’ll also go bankrupt if you choose not to buy any property. In order to win the game you have to spend your money wisely, and you have to get monopolies (preferably in the red, yellow, green, and navy blue areas lol). So it really isn’t about the amount that is given, it’s about how wise you are with the amount you have.
Don’t let your circumstances determine how you use what God has given you. Joseph was called to be a ruler at age 17. He didn’t become one until age 30. He didn’t compare himself to others and just wait until the right opportunity came. He was a good steward over the responsibilities that God gave him. He was a leader as a slave, prisoner, and eventually as ruler over all of Egypt. Don’t belittle yourself or think too highly of yourself. God gives you different responsibilities and puts you through different circumstances because he knows you can do it. God has faith in YOU! Don’t sleep on the responsibilities that he has placed on you. Manage it well. Yea you might not be where you would like to be, but God has still given you all the tools that you need in the current season that you’re in. When you perform well in the workplace over a given period of time, you receive a promotion or raise. God does the same when you perform well with the gifts he gives you. Don’t be a good manager just so you can get more though. Be a good manager because the gifts that have been given to you aren’t yours—they’re God’s. He owns it all.
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