02/05

Top Requirement for Stewards

“Moreover it is required in stewards that one be found faithful.”
I Corinthians 4:2

When God is looking for His interests to be managed, He requires faithfulness. When a employee, pastor, or other leader is looking for a team to lean on, faithfulness is the most valuable characteristic. When a leader has team member that is unfaithful, it usually sets back the vision, causes damage to areas of development and productivity, and has a negative effect on momentum and moral. Breaking a commitment also damages relationships because it shows you do not value the person you made a commitment to. It’s God’s idea for people to work together, and when you work together, you need a leader. From a leader’s point of view, when you go to lean on a person to fulfill their area of responsibility, and he or she isn’t there, it causes a suffering for that leader and for the team. The Bible puts it this way, “Putting confidence in an unreliable man is like chewing with a sore tooth, or trying to run on a broken foot.” Proverbs 25:19 (TLB). See also Proverbs 20:6.

It is a sin to break our word. God considers our word to be our covenant. Breaking a commitment hurts a vision and the people who are a part of that vision. When I have broken a commitment, God has required me to repent. He didn’t treat a choice to break a promise lightly, and neither should we. Jesus often referred to faithfulness for those joining him in ministry, making comments like, “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God (Luke 9:62),” and “let the dead bury the dead (Luke 9:60).” So many have chosen to turn from commitments due to an inability to trust God with their families and careers. Jesus said in Luke 14: 26 “If anyone comes to Me and does not hate their father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple.” In context, Jesus told people to count the cost for stewardship before making the agreement to serve in ministry. Don’t commit yourself as a steward and then leave because of a personal or family issue. Stewards must be faithful.

Apostle Paul has been criticized for refusing to take John Mark on another missionary journey, but John Mark was unfaithful and broke a commitment to Paul. Paul risked his life on his journeys. He was beaten, shipwrecked, stoned, imprisoned, and often struggled for food and lodging. Paul needed a team he could rely upon. Paul needed a Timothy, not a John Mark. My husband often shows great mercy, and as a pastor who has been let down once in awhile, he has graciously pointed out, Paul still found John Mark useful in the ministry (II Timothy 4:11). Even if someone fails us, we pray they will still be useful somewhere else.

Application: Is there a button the enemy pushes to distract or derail you from keeping your word? Surrender that concern to God and be faithful.

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