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A Good Steward – Part 2

Ecclesiastes12.13

Yesterday, we talked about stewardship.  Stewardship, according to the Holman Bible Dictionary, is "the responsibility to manage all the resources of life for the glory of God, acknowledging God as our provider."  Stewardship is more than money; it is time and energy and effort; it is all the resources of life that God has given us.  Being a good steward is first about acknowledging God as our Provider.  He is Creator and Sustainer of life.  Stewardship is also about the heart.  It is about surrender.  When we recognize and take ownership of our sin before God and when we repent of our sin and confess Jesus Christ as Lord, God changes our hearts.  He forgives us, cleanses us, and frees us from the bondage and penalty of sin.  A changed heart, a freed heart is a heart full of love, gratitude, and compassion for God.

Solomon was one of the wisest men to ever live, and in Ecclesiastes he talks about life.  He talks about the passions and the desires of life.  He talks about time and energy and effort.  In his conclusion, Solomon says in Ecclesiastes 12:13, "Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the duty of all mankind."  These are simple words, yet they are powerful words.  Stewardship is about fearing God and keeping His commands.  The fear of God is a fear that produces reverence and respect and awe.  Solomon says in Proverb 1:7, "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction."  He goes on to say in Proverbs 8:13, "To fear the Lord is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech."  As Christ followers, we recognize who we are apart from Jesus and who we are in Jesus.  We recognize that before repentance, our hearts were bent toward ourselves, full of evil - prideful and arrogant.  In our sinfulness, we did not fear God.  BUT THANKS BE TO JESUS!!!  We recognize in our repentance an awesome and loving God!  Our hearts bend toward Him.   God loves us!  God forgives us!  God blesses us!  Out of reverence and respect, as Christ followers we will want to give back to God.  Out of the overflow of a changed and thankful heart, as Christ followers we will want to be good stewards of all that God has given us.  It's not about earning salvation or deserving rewards from God.  It's about faith in God.  It's about an intimate relationship with Him through Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.  It's about our hearts!  Maybe that is why in Provers 4:23, Solomon said these words: "Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it."  The difference between good stewardship and bad stewardship is the heart.  I pray that God has our complete hearts, and I pray that we will be good stewards of all that He has given, is giving, and will give!  After all, this is the duty of all mankind...

I would love to hear your comments...

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