I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.
I made a $500 mistake in my checkbook. Not good. At Christmas. Really not good.
I have spent the morning trying to figure out what I did and unfortunately, I found it. I screwed up. Just didn’t write a couple of expenses down in my checkbook. Mistakes like this can put the screws to what is looking like a tight Christmas to begin with. I have to admit, my gut reaction is to panic. But then I remember- this is not the first time that God has gotten me out of a tight jam. This is definitely not my first rodeo, nor will it be my last.
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What is Stewardship?
Psalms 24:1-2 says, “The earth is the Lord’s, and all it contains, the world, and those who dwell in it. For He has founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers.”
They say a great definition of worship is tied up in the idea that God is great, and worship is just acting accordingly. We acknowledge His greatness. Stewardship is similar. The Scripture says God owns all things, stewardship is just acknowledging that and simply living like God owns it all. What would change in your finances if you thought of yourself as the manager of what God has given you to manage, and He is the owner of all that you “own”?
We would like for you to consider becoming a Generous Steward. That requires a few things.
1. To be generous is to give of your finances to advance God’s Kingdom
“People go through three conversions: the conversion of their head, their heart and their pocketbook. Unfortunately, not all at the same time.” -Martin Luther
In 1517, Martin Luther nailed his famed 95 Theses on the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany. This act of protest would spark the Protestant Reformation. While the content of his concerns were salvific in nature, he went on to teach everything under the sun about living out the Christian life, including the need for us to have a conversion experience related to the way we think about our money. Continue reading “We Need a Reformation of the Pocketbook!”→
I would not have made a very good Israelite in the days of Manna. You remember those right? The nation of Israel had recently exited from Egypt under the strong arm of the Lord and had left the Egyptians in complete disarray. The victorious nation with heads held high would soon war with the nations of the promised land and live in a land full of milk and honey or said another way- a land so blessed that they would have everything they needed and more. The plentiful vision of the land to which they were heading set up an expectation that would come to haunt them for the next 40 years or so. As you probably know they would receive the Law of God in the middle of a Golden-Calf revolt. Then they would “chicken out” at the border of the Promised Land at Kadesh Barnea. Because of their lack of faith, they would spend the next 40 years wandering through the wilderness. How disappointing! Continue reading “The Blessings of Daily Bread- Intro”→
Our ministry is a stewardship ministry. That means that we help families and individuals respond well to the truth that God owns all things. Even the name of this blog reflects the drum that we beat on a regular basis. In Psalms 24: 1-2 we see that
The earth is the Lord’s, and all it contains, the world, and those who dwell in it. For He has founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers.
I am in the middle of processing payroll and about to pay bills. Looks like it is going to be a MANNA month. What is a Manna month you ask? A manna month is one in which the Lord is providing exactly what we need and no more. On the surface that sounds great but the reality is that I prefer a SURPLUS month. I like to look at my payroll account and my savings account and see a lot left over. And yet it seems that we have more months that are “manna” than “surplus” which seems to be the Lord’s preference. Let me backfill the Manna part for you. Continue reading “Manna Living”→
Have you ever wondered if your faith is genuine? You may be able to recite all the creeds and your behavior is consistent with what you read in the Bible and the Christian subculture you associate with. But, you are looking for something deeper. Something that reassures your heart as well as your mind. I ran across a passage in 1 John 3 that is both convicting and comforting all at the same time.
17 But whoever has the world’s goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him 18 little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth. 19 We will know by this that we are of the truth, and will assure our heart before Him 20 in whatever our heart condemns us; for God is greater than our heart and knows all things. 21 Beloved, if our heart does not condemn us, we have confidence before God; 22 and whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do the things that are pleasing in His sight.
Warren Buffett is known for his one-liners and one of his most memorable ones is about financial mismanagement. He says, “You only find out who is swimming naked when the tide goes out!” By that I think he means that if you are not managing your finances well, then when you encounter a tough time your vulnerability will be obvious to all. That is why we are so insistent that every family needs a financial spending plan. As we discussed in our previous post two out of three families are just winging it when it comes to their finances. And as Mr. Buffett says time will reveal what we are wearing under the water. Continue reading “Signs of a Healthy Financial System: Generosity”→