I listen to 91.3 Spirit FM while I drive in the Roanoke area. When I turned on the radio, they were going through their annual fundraising drive. As I am amazed to see them start so early, I also caution that people in our church will see our Stewardship Sunday in the same way.
When we think about ‘stewardship,’ many consider it a responsibility as members to contribute to funding that will help the church to operate. I do agree with the principle of us being responsible for the community of believers. However, I am certain that Biblical Stewardship goes beyond this.
Biblical Stewardship is our commitment to be faithful to our call as a follower. God called us to ‘Love God and to Love others.’ Through our commitment, we are renewing our call to love God with our heart, soul, mind and strength’ (Mark 12:30-31).
1. Heart: Our commitment to living under the Biblical teaching of tithing is our commitment to be free of materialism. Jesus said we cannot serve two masters (Matthew 6:24). Tithing is the best antidote to be financially free.
2. Soul: Our commitment of our time with God, through worship and prayer is an essential part of our stewardship. Without a relationship with our Lord, all we seem to carry becomes a heavy burden. However, we remember that Jesus promises that his yoke is not heavy. (Matthew 11:30).
3. Mind: Stewardship means to fix our eyes onto our Lord, as we carry out the call. We are offering our lives, as a living sacrifice. We are not to be conformed to the world, but rather see how God renews our mind (Romans 12:1-2).
4. Strength: Our time to serve others and serve God’s Kingdom is the final part of Biblical Stewardship. Not only is it a reflection of our love of others (Mark 12:31), but also it is a visual representation of us being faithful to the call to bless others (Genesis 12:3).
So, do not see Stewardship Sunday, on November 19th, 2017, as an attempt for our church to raise funds for the next year. It should be our renewed commitment, being offered as a thanksgiving to our Lord, to continue our journey as called people in this world. Reach Out Challenge 2017 is one expression. Our financial commitment to our Lord is another part of it. But most importantly offering our heart is the most important stewardship God asks from us.