Stewardship

Stewardship Message

The Gift of Contentment

As children grow up, they often feel cramped by their parents’ restrictions. Dad says to be home by 11. But why can’t I say out ‘til midnight? Mom says to clean your room on Saturday morning. But I want to sleep in late, then roll out of bed, hop in the car and go to my friend’s house without delay. I want to do what I decide is best.
 
The older we get, and especially when we have kids of our own, we begin to see the truth. Mom and Dad were not cramping our style or trying to crush our personal freedom — they were looking out for us, providing for us and teaching us a better way of life.
 
If that’s how it is with fallible human parents, how much more so with our Heavenly Father! We sinners often feel cramped by the Law of God. Our sinful flesh wants to go its own way, do its own thing and be in charge. But in our heart of hearts, we know how foolish this is. We know that God loves us, and therefore all of His commands are for our benefit. Each one of His commandments is meant to bless us. Consider the last two commandments:
 
You shall not covet your neighbor’s house.
What does this mean? We should fear and love God so that we do not scheme to get our neighbor’s inheritance or house, or get it in a way which only appears right, but help and be of service to him in keeping it. (SC II)
 
You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.
What does this mean? We should fear and love God so that we do not entice or force away our neighbor’s wife, workers, or animals, or turn them against him, but urge them to stay and do their duty. (SC II)
 
The commandments against coveting are warning us against losing one of the greatest gifts we can possess: contentment. Being content and thankful with what God has provided for us is a necessary building block of living a happy life. Unthankful coveting of what we have not been given will only make us miserable, so God warns us against it.
 
God has proven His love for us in sending His only begotten Son to shed His blood for us, cleanse us of our sins and brings us back into His family. If He loves us this much, then when percentage of His commandments do you think are meant to harm us? Probably no more than one or two percent, right? Of course that’s absurd. God means to bless us with everything He says to us. The Law of God simply describes what a truly happy life, lived in thankfulness to Christ, looks like: It’s a generous, merciful, contented life that uses all of the resources God has given us for His purposes.
 

– LCMS Stewardship Ministry:  lcms.org/stewardship

Stewardship Thoughts

June 2 - Proper 4

2 Corinthians 4:7 – “But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us.” 
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June 9 - Proper 5

Mark 3:35 – “Whoever does the will of God, he is my brother and sister and mother.” 
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June 16 - Proper 6

Mark 4:34 – “He did not speak to them without a parable, but privately to his own disciples he explained everything.” 
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June 23 - Proper 7

Mark 4:40 – “He said to them, ‘Why are you so afraid? Have you still no faith?’” 
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June 30 - Proper 8

2 Corinthians 8:3 – “For they gave according to their means, as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord.” 
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