“… When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man (or adult), I put away my childish things…” 1 Cor. 13:11
In this lesson I want to share with you what it takes to become a “Good Steward” of God’s business. In the book of Luke Ch. 16 verse 2, Jesus says, “…Give an account of your stewardship.” I sincerely believe God will only give us what He can trust us with. And remember, the Bible tells us, “…Where much is given, much is required.” Luke 12:48
As we begin this New Year of 2011 it will bring new challenges to each of us. The question I ask now is how much and how far do you want to go in life? On God’s part, He is ready to give you all you can handle. He has promised more than once that He will not withhold one good thing from you. But, are you ready to handle it? The first step to “shaking off” a dead, failed past, and moving into a new and successful tomorrow can be summed up in one word… RESPONSIBILITY!
Being responsible for what God has already given you determines what God will give you. Wise handling, right decisions, right connections, dealing with hard times, and coming through where others failed, this is the kind of responsibility that leads to spiritual maturity. There are certain “good common sense” changes you can make within yourself and God expects this. You don’t need to hear a voice from a burning bush to lend a hand to someone who has fallen. Or, hear a voice speak from a cloud to give food to someone who is hungry. All you need is good common sense and a heart of love. Paul is exhorting us to become mature Christians. Maturity, or spiritual growth, only comes through responsibility.
Paul declares, a child speaks as, understands as, and thinks as a child. However, there comes a time in life to “put away” childish things and ways and simply GROW UP! Realize one thing; there are no “short-cuts” to maturity, success, and stewardship. There is a certain process we must all go through. Like the new born babe who first learns to roll over, crawl, pull up, and fall, maybe fall many times before it learns to stand on its own two feet and walk. If a baby had to learn to walk without ever falling, it would never walk. Are you getting this? Spiritual maturity that leads to good stewardship and successful living is the same learning process.
It’s impossible to grow into a mature state of mind without making the necessary changes from childhood to adulthood. An adult no longer sees the world through the eyes of a child. We not only become adult physically… but mentally and spiritually. From irresponsibility to responsibility, from being a follower to a leader! This always comes in 3 steps… from being totally dependent on others for everything… to being independent, doing things for yourself, and finally, if you are smart, becoming inter-independent; being able to share your gifts and talents, without intimidation or jealousy, with others who are equally as talented. Realizing the old saying, 2 heads are better than one. Bill Gates is the best example, the richest man in the world. His formula; surround yourself with smart people. People who are still in the crawling stages cannot and will not help you run. And, you are in a race!
This brings us to the “Basic Ingredient” of spiritual growth and success. The key word is “self-discipline”. You will never accomplish anything without it. Simply said, SUCCESS COSTS WHAT IT COSTS! Notice this: the word “discipline” comes from the Greek word “Gym-nat-su”. It sounds like gymnastic and basically means the same thing; developing your muscles. Please save this teaching, I will continue in my next news letter… Believe me, this teaching will help you to grow and achieve.