"It is more blessed to give than to receive." (Acts 20: 35)
15 Signs of a Good Steward “He that is faithful in a very little is faithful also in much: and he that is unrighteous in a very little is unrighteous also in much.” (Luke 16: 9-15)
On the face of every dollar bill, it says, “In God we trust.” Today’s Gospel turns that statement around and asks, “Can God trust us?” Can He trust us with His money? It is His, after all. Every dollar, every dime, every nickel and penny belongs to Him. Everything we have is His; it’s simply on loan to us. And He wants to know whether He can trust us with it. Can we live within our means? Can we use His money wisely?
There are plenty of Shylock’s ready and willing to convince us that the wise use of money involves schemes like: “cash advances, no credit, no worries;” “no down payment, no interest, no payments until . . .” We met a lot of those smooth talkers during the housing bubble and now we must live with the aftermath of that kind of thinking . . ."15 Signs of a Good Steward" continues. Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes
“ . . .he took the five loaves and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake the loaves; and he gave to the disciples to set before them; and the two fishes divided he among them all.” (Mark 6: 34-44) The feeding of the multitude with five loaves and two fishes reminds me of a ritual that we observe in our parish. Once a year, we take up a “reverse collection” in which the offertory baskets are passed down the pews and each member of the congregation is invited to remove a slip of paper identifying food items needed by a local food bank . . . "Miracle of the Loaves and Fishes" continues. Jesus' Teaching on Money On at least seven occasions Christ explicitly cautioned His disciples about the dangers of wealth. The old saw that, “money can’t buy happiness,” is only half right. The truth is buying creates an emotional rush – the use of our “purchasing power” gives us a fleeting sense of happiness. But, like any emotional high, the euphoria wears off. We get used to it. To achieve that same high again, we need more money, or what money can buy: material possessions security, status.
Compulsive spenders are addicted to the feeling they get when they buy, buy, buy. They get a fix each time they swipe their credit card . . . "Jesus Teaching on Money" continues.
Shopping Locally is Good Stewardship My wife and I make a conscious choice to patronize the small, local retailers in our area, even though it may cost a little more and the small merchants don’t have the same wide selection as the big bog box stores. By shopping locally, we hope to act as good stewards, sharing what we have received with our friends and neighbors. The hard-working, creative entrepreneurs, who give our town its unique character and who are the backbone of our community, have been hard hit by the recession. A number of stores have closed for good. They need and deserve our support. What’s more, this form of stewardship is in everyone’s best interest . . . Continue reading: "Shopping Locally is Good Stewardship." What Would You Do If You Won $1 Million? A Las Vegas man received the shock of a lifetime this summer, when
America’s most welcome drop-in guests surprised him. Joseph Beane of Las Vegas received a visit from the Publishers Clearing House Prize Patrol, who named him the winner of the company’s latest SuperPrize award of $1,000,000. Since 1967, Publishers Clearinghouse has given away $223 million in prize money. What would you do if the Prize Patrol came knocking on your door? Take this quick online poll and see how your answers compare with those of other people.
Rule of Thumb
When making donations, find a charity you can trust by visiting Charity Navigator, which evaluates the financial health of over 5,500 of America's largest charities.
Stewardship: We Cannot Out-give the Lord Bob Larranaga “It is hard for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 19: 23-30) Most of us would agree that we are not among the super rich, who Jesus spoke about. But we wouldn’t mind being put to the test – if only the Lord would shower us with riches, we'd show Him what good stewards we’d make. We would not commit the same mistake the rich man made when he walked away from Jesus.
But not so fast. The stewardship test includes a trick question. You see, surveys show our definition of wealth is only loosely related to our net worth. When the rich are asked how wealthy they are, most of them say they are “middle class;” and that includes many millionaires.
O.K., so maybe some of those uber rich are a little misguided. But what about the rest of us? Is it possible that we, too, are wealthier than we think? In all likelihood, the answer is “yes” for two good reasons. First, we tend to compare ourselves to our neighbors, the Joneses, who enjoy a standard of living comparable to ours. So we think of ourselves as being “average.” And, second, all of us know of others who earn a lot more than we do. So we assume we are more or less “middle class” . . . just striving to get ahead. Certainly not rich. Not by our standards.
But what about God's standards? What if He judges us, not by what we give, but by what we keep? We Americans enjoy the world's highest standard of living. Our middle class ranks among the planet’s wealthiest people. The Lord expects us to share our blessings unstintingly with the needy. And, if we do, He will continue to bless our nation. We cannot out-give the Lord. Read other Recent Posts on stewardship and add a comment.