by Greg Floars
Find out more about the ministry of Free Will Baptist Home Missions at www.homemissions.net.
“I want to be a good steward for my Lord” was my first thought when asked to write this article. I began to think about the things God has entrusted to me for good stewardship. How had I done managing his gifts? More important, how was I doing?
Most of us are familiar with the stewardship slogan: Time, talent, and treasure. The statement is accurate, challenging, and convicting. A person may be a good steward in one of these areas, but that does not release him from responsibility in the other areas.
A generous giver is still expected to be generous with the days God has given him, to spend them wisely. A person who spends hours at church and church-related activities is still expected to support the Lord’s work financially. Everyone has a talent God expects him or her to use for His work and His glory. He wants us to be good stewards in every area of life.
While this trio is a great measuring stick for stewardship, I don’t believe it is an exhaustive list. We are to be good managers in many other areas of our lives. The longer the list, the more convicted I become, and the more determined I am to do a better job. Knowing what God expects of us can sometimes be overwhelming—even for those who strive the hardest.
I constantly find new areas of responsibility. It is frightening to realize I have neglected an area unintentionally and have not given God my best. When this happens, I ask Him to forgive my failure and I commit to do a better job with His guidance. The Lord doesn’t just throw us into the world and leave us. He is always close at hand, ready to help us if we ask.
God has given me a wife and three children. It is my responsibility to lead them in the ways of the Lord. When I neglect them or fail them, I am not being a good steward. My church family needs me, and when I fail them in their hour of need, I have not been a good steward.
God has placed unsaved souls in my path, giving me the opportunity and responsibility to share the sweet gospel message of Jesus Christ with them. If I am sidetracked or distracted and miss this opportunity, I have failed to be a good steward in the worst way. To miss a divine appointment carries eternal consequences.
It is impossible to list all of the areas for which God holds us responsible. But you can sum up stewardship with one word—life. God wants our whole lives, every area, not just a portion.
“Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.” This terse statement from 1 Corinthians 4:2 makes it clear that stewardship is more than just a good idea; it is a requirement. God expects it.
In 2 Timothy 4:13, Paul asked Timothy to bring him some things he had left behind, “…the cloak I left at Troas with Carpus, when thou comest, bring with thee, and the books, but especially the parchments.” I have often wondered what else Paul left scattered across the ancient world after being arrested in the marketplaces, leaving city after city just ahead of a howling mob, being shipwrecked, lowered over the city walls in a basket. Certainly he had little time to pack.
One thing is certain. Paul gave everything to his Lord. He was prepared to stand before God knowing he had been a good steward. He had invested in an eternal land where the market will not crash. He was involved in the most important business on earth—leading lost souls to Christ.
He would soon stand before Christ, and he was looking forward to it. He told Timothy, “I am now ready…” He had been a good steward of time, talent, treasure, and much more. When all is said and done I want to stand with Paul as a good steward, having given all for my Lord.
About the Writer: Greg Floars is a home missionary to Marquette, MI. To learn more about his and other Home Missions churches, visit www.homemissions.net.