On Being Stewards

As we continue our conversation about the basic beliefs of the Christian worldview this week, we are talking about people. What are people? More importantly, what should we think about them as followers of Jesus? The answer to that question is entirely wrapped up in how we got here and who put us here. Whether we like it or not, we are ultimately beholden to whatever or whoever that is. Let’s go back to the beginning to see just what people are for.

On Being Stewards

Let’s play a little game this morning. I’m going to describe an object and I want you to tell me what it’s for. The first object has three long legs and a large flat surface on top. Got an image in your minds? Okay, what’s it for? If you said, “for sitting,” you owe me some money because you probably just broke the floor tom for my drum set. A floor tom is for making music (or noise), not sitting. I really wish you’d be more careful. Let’s try this again. This time I’m thinking of an object with a handle usually made out of wood or some kind of composite material, and out of one end protrudes a long, thin piece of metal. Now you again: What’s it for? If you said, “putting in screws,” you are going to have your work cut out for you trying to put in screws with an ice pick. You can turn it all day long, but you probably aren’t going make much progress. You’re just so-so at this, aren’t you? I’ll give you one more chance. This time I’m thinking of an object that is usually made out of wood, though sometimes metal is used instead. It is typically about as long as your arm and tapers from a thicker end to a thinner one. What’s it for? If you said something along the lines of, “hitting balls,” it would technically work for that, although you’d probably better get the table leg back to whoever’s table you took it off of to play ball with along with an apology.

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Digging in Deeper: Genesis 2:18a

“Then the Lord God said, ‘It is not good for the man to be alone.'”‬‬ (CSB – Read was chapter)

Every story starts at a point of peace. Now, in our world, broken as it is by sin, we only rarely start from a place of actual peace, but at the least our stories start from a place of relative peace. Then, something happens that breaks the peace. The rest of the story, then, is about restoring that peace. It’s not just made-up stories that start like this, though, this is the narrative arc of the stories of our lives. Bigger than that, this is the arc of the story of creation. Indeed, all of the stories we write are merely reflections of this larger story.

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Morning Musing: Genesis 2:7

“Then the Lord God formed the man out of the dust from the ground and breathed the breath of life into his nostrils, and the man became a living being.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

The story of creation has attracted its fair share of attention over the years…probably more than that actually. Most of the focus is on how to understand what the “days” mean and whether we should understand them literally, figuratively, or in some other way. There’s certainly a time and a place for those discussions, and they aren’t without significance importance, but I don’t want to go there in this post. Instead, for just a minute, let’s set aside the technicalities and look at the beauty of what was happening here.

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Digging in Deeper: Proverbs 18:1

“Whoever isolates himself seeks his own desire; he breaks out against all sound judgment.”‬‬ (ESV) 

“I just need some time to myself.” Have you ever heard something like that before? If you’ve been through the preteen and teenage years the better question might be how many times do you hear that per day. Have you ever said it yourself (other than when you were a teenager)? What prompts such a declaration? Often it comes because we’ve had a bad day and want to be alone so we can lick our wounds in private. And, that’s okay. Being by ourselves isn’t a bad thing. Being isolated, on the other hand, is a problem. 

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Morning Musings: 2 Corinthians 10:5

“We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ.”  (ESV – Read the chapter)

Here is a truth that the world doesn’t know and Jesus followers forget much too often and always at our peril: Our chief enemies in the battle to advance the Gospel are always ideas and never people.  People are never our enemies.  They are always, only, and ever creatures bearing the image of God and, prayerfully, future brothers and sisters in Christ.  Our opponents are the ideas they carry and advance.  It is ideas that undermine and tear down the Christian worldview.  Ideas have consequences.  Bad ideas have victims.  We must be ruthless with ideas, but gentle and loving with people.  This is a tough balance to achieve, but one we must if we are to boldly advance the Gospel as is our call.