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December 27, 2015

Have you ever noticed that whenever "stewardship" is mentioned people immediately start thinking about finances?  Perhaps one reason people become so uncomfortable with the discussion is because deep down we know that stewardship is more about our hearts than our about money.  Perhaps it is easier to think about dollars and cents than what God may desire to do in our hearts.
God speaks to Moses with instructions for Israel's giving:  "Tell the sons of Israel to raise a contribution for Me; from every man whose heart moves him, you shall raise My contribution" (Exodus 25:2).  The heart moved in surrender to God is the pre-requisite for giving.

The heart holds our purse strings and it is harder to surrender the heart than the purse.  If the heart is surrendered then giving becomes an easy response in one's relationship with Jesus.
Consider the illustration given to us in 1 Chronicles 29:9:  "Then the people rejoiced because they had offered so willingly, for they made their offering to the Lord with a whole heart..."  What a picture this is of great joy, of giving with rejoicing and fullness of heart.

If we're giving out of obligation and duty we may be doing ourselves more harm than good.  Perhaps we should just hold onto our money.  There is no joy in this and our giving falls far short of God's heart level blessings.
The Church is an organism.  It is the spiritual body of Jesus Christ, the Head of the Church.  We give because of our relationship with Jesus.  David asks, "What shall I repay the Lord for all His goodness to me" (Psalm 116:12)?  The answer is found in one word:  Everything.

Stewardship is the management of our lives in response to God's love given through Jesus Christ.  The giving of our lives, and so our time, talent, and treasure, is our responsibility in our relationship with Jesus.  Stewardship is our respones to His great love towards us.
May we give from our hearts.  May we give of ourselves with love from our heart to the One who loves us.