Just Stewards, Not Owners

Oh how easy it is to forget where we fit in the overall scheme of things! Selfishness and self-sufficiency is a disease with which all of us are fatally infected. Me. Mine. What I want. My way. My car. My money. My home. My job. My wife. My time. Jesus once asked one of us, “Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?” Luke 12:20.

The truth is that we are all stewards, not owners. That’s right. In the big scheme of things, not one of us owns one thing. God owns everything including the air we breathe, the earth where we reside, time itself and even us. We didn’t bring even one penny into this world, and we won’t take even one penny out. We’re just passing through, privileged to enjoy a few of the things that belong to God the owner. When you back off a bit and look at the true picture, it becomes obvious that every moment is precious. Yes. Precious! Call it a lifetime trip or the trip of a lifetime; either way, life is quite a trip.

The older I get the more keenly aware of stewardship I become. Managing what God lets me have is a daily balancing act, especially time management. From the deepest recesses of my soul I want to use wisely all he allows me to touch. It is not uncommon for people to become somewhat irritated with me because I’m not as readily available as they think I should be. They can’t always instantly reach me by phone, and I don’t return their call quickly enough. They want me to call or visit someone, make a hospital or shut-in call or be somewhere or do something. Usually on their timetable. With all the preaching and seminar work I do (all of which requires lots of preparation, usually many hours), the books and other materials I write, the travel and the help and advice I give to people all across America and often foreign countries, I often find myself overwhelmed. There’s more work than there is boy, not to mention a wife and family and a seemingly incessant increase in time spent in doctor’s offices.

More and more this forces me to view my time and other resources in light of the eternal, what my owner would have me as a steward do with His resources including the time He allows me to have. Only He knows how much I want to make it count! My use of it may sometimes disappoint and irritate others, but more than anything else I want my stewardship to be acceptable to God. If I have disappointed you, please forgive me. Sometimes my days and weeks end well before I complete all that is before me. Thanks to all of you who have cut me a little slack and been so patient and understanding. Pray that I will give the very best I have to my Master, and be a good steward of the resources He has entrusted to me. I am well aware that the day of accounting for my stewardship is not far away.