02/04

Stewards of the Gifts

“As each one has received a gift, minister it to one another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.” I Peter 4:10

Peter said that God has given each one of us a gift or gifts to minister to one another. The word “minister” in the original Greek language is diakoneo, meaning, “to be a servant, attendant, to serve, wait upon, minister.” The gifts given to each one are gifts that are meant to help others, not only to enjoy ourselves.

There is a desire God places inside of us to want to be a vessel God can use to help someone else. We also desire to experience the grace and the power of God flowing through us. The truth about the gifts of God is that they increase as we put them to use. If we do not act on the gifts, they can often lay dormant. However, at any time we decide to activate those gifts, the Holy Spirit causes the gifts to stir up and activate.

A steward is someone who has been entrusted with the management of matters that belong to another. God wants us to be good stewards of the gifts God has given to us, to follow His desires for how the gifts are to be used. He doesn’t want us to hide or stifle the gifts, but to stir up the gifts to be a blessing to those in need. II Timothy 1:6 says, “to stir up the gift of God which is in you through the laying on of hands.” Stirring up the gift gave the idea of kindling the remains of the embers of a fire, a rekindling. Other definitions of being stirred up are to resuscitate, bring back to life, or to strengthen.

The Apostle Paul referred to himself as a bondservant of Jesus Christ. We get insight into what a bondservant is from Deuteronomy 15:12-18. In this passage, a servant paying off his or her debt was called a slave. When a servant’s debt was paid, that person was allowed to go free. However, if a person loved the man he served, loved the house he served, and saw that he prospered in the man’s house, the servant may not want to leave the house. Instead, he could choose to remain in the house and to continue to serve. Apostle Paul called himself a bondservant of Christ, someone free from sin, but someone choosing to commit himself to serve the Lord because of the love he has for his redeemer.

A bondservant prospers in the house he or she serves in. Jesus said in John 12:26, “If anyone serves Me, let him follow Me; and where I am, there My servant will be also. If anyone serves Me, him My Father will honor.” Serving the Lord comes with benefits. Being a steward of God’s gifts has a blessing with it. Serve God, and He will take care of you.

Application: If you mean this prayer, pray it from your heart, “I am your bondservant, Lord, and I want to be in your house forever.”

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