O merciful Creator, your hand is open wide to satisfy the needs of every living creature: Make us always thankful for your loving providence; and grant that we, remembering the account that we must one day give, may be faithful stewards of your good gifts; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Book of Common Prayer page 259
Two Simple Definitions of Stewardship
1) What I do, with all that I am and all that I have, after I say, “I believe.”
2) Using the gifts God has given us, to do the work God is calling us to do.
Stewardship is using the gifts of time, talent and treasure that God has given us to do the work God calls us to do. Stewardship is an outlook of abundance but so often when we think about giving we do so from an attitude of scarcity:
There is only so much time in a week. Do you spend less time praying about the best way to spend your time than you do opening the daily mail? Maybe you’re overlooking the most important message anyone could ever send you. If we increased the time we spent listening to God we might discover that we are being drawn into a powerful ministry with, and for, others that is better than anything we might have otherwise chosen. Offer more time to God and prepare to be surprised.
There is only so much talent in any one of us. Think about the great things that can be accomplished by a group of faithful people who are willing to join together in God’s name. Your gifts might be the one ingredient missing from the mix. Offer your gifts to God and prepare to be part of something creative and fruitful.
There is only so much money. When the amount you are willing to pull out of your pocket increases and is joined with an increasing amount offered up by hundreds of others suddenly you’re talking about real money- enough to run a church and to fuel major missions. Offer more money for God’s work and prepare to make the church and Christ’s ministries in the world grow.