According to Dictionary.com, stewardship is managing another’s property, financial affairs or estate. The responsible overseeing and protection of something considered worth caring for and preserving.
As I was taking a walk last week talking out loud to the Lord (which is something I do often), I literally pictured myself emptying my heart and my mind as I shared my concerns and burdens with him. That particular day, I wanted to talk with him about a few big decisions I needed to make regarding some home repairs I noticed needed to be done. I prayed for clear direction, provision… and shared with the Lord the pressure I was feeling of making sure I chose the best company that would honestly and proficiently help fix the problem.
It was then that this thought hit me… “Lord, I am not an owner of anything, am I?”
“I am a steward of what you’ve given me and am just trying to maintain and take care of what you in your sovereignty have provided my family. This situation is on you, God! Who do you want to come over to take care of these issues in your home? Guide me Lord, I want to steward well what you have already provided us and I do feel like I have been doing that to the best of my ability.”
It was after this conversation that a portion of a verse came to mind that totally supported this realization. I could only remember a part of it, but it was something like… The earth is the Lord’s the people and all who dwell within. Once I returned to the house, I looked up the scripture and this is what it says: “For the [whole] earth is the Lord’s and everything that is in it.” 1 Corinthians 10:26
In that moment, my role was clarified; I realized prayer is my responsibility, good stewardship is my responsibility, but guidance, direction and provision is up to the Holy Spirit and my Heavenly Father.
Do you remember the definition of stewardship?
Stewardship is managing another’s property, financial affairs or estate. The responsible overseeing and protection of something considered worth caring for and preserving.
I proceeded to confess my tight fisted grip of “supposed ownership” that I had taken on and released what I was concerned about to Him. Immediately, I noticed my confidence in God’s ability to sustain my family increase. Also, the fear of making a wrong decision and not being able to do what needed to be done went away! I was reminded of the verse the Lord had shown me earlier in the week that truly brought comfort to my heart, and maybe it will comfort you, too.
“Behold, God is my helper and ally, The Lord is the sustainer of my soul [my upholder].” Psalm 54:4
Some translations say that the Lord is the upholder of our very lives. Wow! I don’t know what you are holding tightly and secretly fearing you might lose or not be able to take care of like you have in the past. But let me offer the same firm but gentle reminder God gave me: you don’t own anything; it is all His. Let the false sense of ownership go, release it to him willingly. Get out from underneath that yoke! It feels great to be free from that.
Remember 1 Corinthians 10:26: “For the [whole] earth is the Lord’s and everything that is in it.”
So, how can you respond to this?
- Would you take a walk today? Acknowledge the truth that God owns everything you see, enjoy and even pay for!
- Confess the truth that you are just a steward who desires to follow His guidance in caring for what He has given you.
- Ask Him to clarify your stewardship role, and feel the weight of responsibility that is NOT YOURS lift off your heart and mind and maybe even physically off your shoulders.
You may be a mom like me who is honestly doing your best to steward the gift of your time, your home and your family during this unique season. Or, you may be the primary bread winner of your family like me and feel the weight of that stewardship, especially now during a time when you are fully trusting God to equip you long-term to lead and provide for your family and those you work with. You could be a high school or college student who has had to steward more responsibility or varying roles within your family during this time, while also grieving all the losses you’ve suddenly experienced.
Whatever hats you are wearing right now, can we commit together that we are going to hold tightly to the hand of God that “is able” while relinquishing our grip on the false sense of ownership and misplaced expectations we’ve unnecessarily placed on ourselves?
God owns it all; He will handle and already has a plan for what is going to happen with THAT… whatever THAT is for you.
All you and I need to do is ask for wisdom to best steward what our Father has entrusted to us. We can pray for faith to trust Him to provide all that is needed in our stewardship role.
Honestly, the best way I have found to “do hard things” like this is to literally pray God’s Word back to Him.
Because, God’s Word is His will and we will receive an answer when we pray it. So, I’d like to close us in prayer with Psalm 121 entitled: “The Lord the keeper of Israel”.
“Father, we will lift up our eyes to the hills (to you), where does our help come from? Our help comes from you Lord, the maker of heaven and earth. You will not allow our feet to slip; You keep us and you will not slumber. You keep Israel too and you will neither slumber [briefly] nor sleep [soundly]. Lord, you are our keeper; you, Lord, are our shade on our right hand. The sun will not strike us by day, nor the moon by night. You, Lord, will protect us from all evil; You will keep our lives. Lord, you will guard our going out and our coming in [everything that we do] from this time forth and forever. Amen!”
I’d like to leave you with this challenge found Deuteronomy 4:39: “Today, recognize and keep in mind that the LORD is God in heaven above and on earth below; there is no other.”