What is Christian Whole-Life Stewardship?
The LCMS defines stewardship this way: Christian stewardship is the free and joyous activity of God’s family — the church — in managing life’s resources for His purposes. When stewardship is taught correctly it is about the whole life of the Christian. However, it is not about the Christian. It is about how a Christian loves the Lord with all his or her heart and all of his or her mind and all his or her strength and all his or her soul and loves his or her neighbor as himself for herself. It is about the teaching of the radical generosity of our Lord toward us in Jesus and then our Holy Spirit-inspired response of generosity toward others.
Who’s responsibility is it?
I believe that God has made me and all creatures; that He has given me body and soul, eyes, ears, and all my members, my reason and all my senses, and still takes care of them. He also gives me clothing and shoes, food and drink, house and home, wife and children, land, animals, and all I have. He richly and daily provides me with all that I need to support this body and life. He defends me against all danger and guards and protects me from all evil. All this He does only out of fatherly, divine goodness and mercy, without any merit or worthiness in me. For all this it is my duty to thank and praise, serve and obey Him. This is most certainly true.
(Martin Luther - The First Article, Small Catechism, 1529)
Every child of God is called to be a steward of what the Lord entrusts to him or her. God has created us for this free and joyous task (Gen. 2:15). When our stewardship failed (Gen.3), the Lord redeemed us through His work on the cross. We are restored to our role as stewards by virtue of our Baptism into Christ. The Holy Spirit calls us by the Gospel as He gathers, enlightens, sanctifies and keeps us in the one true faith (Small Catechism, Article 3 explanation). Our entire life of stewardship is then a response to this wonderful mercy shown us by our Lord (Rom. 12:1-2).
What can we do at my church to educate and incorporate stewardship?
Contact Bill Jordan at District Resources for additional stewardship information.
email@example.com, 715-845-8241 x102
WHOLE LIFE STEWARDSHIP