STEWARDSHIP - some folks run when they hear this word because they think you're asking for money . . . and, to be truthful, sometimes we are. But "stewardship" is about so much more than money. Stewardship is literally the care and preservation of the property of someone else.
As Presbyterians, we believe that everything we have and are, is on loan from God. Therefore, what we do with our bodies, minds, spirits, in fact our lives is Stewardship of God's property. We spend our money, schedule our time, use our gifts, take care of our bodies knowing that they all belong to God and God is watching how we handle these responsibilities. Psalm 24 opens with "The earth is the Lord's, and everything in it, the world and all who live in it." Deuteronomy 8: 18 reminds us, "Remember the Lord, your God, for it is [God] that gives you the ability to produce wealth." God, the owner of all things, has rights. We, as stewards, have the responsibility for administering and caring for all that God loans us. We are accountable to God. As the Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25: 14-30) reminds us, we are accountable to God in the end of our days for how we used what was given to us. If we are good stewards, rewards will follow - in part while we are in this life and fully in the next, as Matthew 25: 21 from the aforementioned parable tells us, "Well done, good and trustworthy servant; you have been trustworthy in a few things, I will put you in charge of many things; enter into the joy of your Master."
Deborah Rexrode, Associate for Stewardship, in the Presbytery of the James, shares that we should also guard our time and be good stewards of time. We need to ask ourselves if we set aside time to be with God each day, once a week, or less often. OR,
do we just "hope it will happen." Praying intentionally each day, walking the labyrinth, taking time in nature, spending quality time with our spouses, children, and other family members, taking time to slow down and care for ourselves - all these help us strengthen our spiritual selves and find God in a multitude of places. Also, truly observing the seasons of the faith helps as well. Do we really think about the promise of the resurrection all through Eastertide which lasts more than one day? When we celebrate Christmas, do we remember Mary's Song of liberation for the poor?
I encourage you to set aside a little time and honestly ask yourself how your use of time, resources, and thought/speech reflect your heart's desires and see if they truly reflect how you feel about God. May the world see a person who reflects God's love, compassion, and grace in all that you do.
May God bless each one,