Stewardship Resource

Living a Life of Stewardship

Happening  Happening
  • Author: Karen Odegard of Prince of Peace Lutheran Church, Burnsville, MN.
  • Updated: 06/23/2008
  • Copyright: Karen Odegard

This congregation connects faith and money by giving Biblical resources and helpful hints. 

The theme for 2002 "Living a Life of Stewardship" is grounded in the reality: "Where your treasure is, there your heart is also."


The earth is the Lord's and all that is in it, the world, and those who live in it - Psalm 24:1

So what is eternal treasure?
Jesus tells us in these parables that there is a treasure which if we discover it, will be worth giving all the money and things we have to gain it.

Is your life a treasure hunt, a search for a perfect person or a perfect place? Have you been longing for a joy you cannot find, a treasure that eludes you? Would you be willing to give up everything you have to gain that treasure? Jesus is that person and heaven is that place.

"The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which someone found and hid; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field." "Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant in search of fine pearls; on finding one pearl of great value, he went and sold all that he had and bought it. - Matthew 13:44-46

Find some treasures that can be stored up in heaven

Power and responsibility:
Luke 19:15-19
Matthew 25:21,23

Rewards:
Ephesians 6:8
Romans 2:6, 10
Matthew 19:27-29

Pleasure:
Psalm 16:11

Friendship:
Luke 16:9


Growing Deeper

1. If your friends in heaven will be those lives you've touched on earth, describe these friends.

2. What are you willing to invest to gain eternal treasure?


How is treasure stored up in heaven?

God has declared that our value is eternal in Jesus Christ. Sooner or later all of the wealth we have stored on earth will be taken from us--but this treasure, our value in Jesus Christ, will last forever. Anything we put into God's hands will be ours for eternity. If we give instead of Keep, if we invest in the eternal instead of the temporary, we store up treasures in heaven that will be waiting for us when we arrive. Investing our resources in God's purposes serves God and others.    

"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." - Matthew 6:19-21


Explore ways to store up treasures in heaven

Show compassion to others: Luke 14:12-14

Give to the poor: Matthew 19:21

Treat your enemies kindly: Luke 6:35

Be merciful: Luke 6:36

Be kind: Matthew 10:42

Growing Deeper

1. How are you storing up treasures in heaven? What treasures are you storing on earth that can be put into God's hands to serve God and others?

2. Look at your checkbook and credit card bills. Where do they say your heart is?


Who really owns this abundant treasure?

God owns everything and everything God gives you is on loan to you. God trusts you to manage these treasures, puts your name on God's account and gives you unrestricted access to it.    

Yours, O Lord, are the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty; for all that is in the heavens and on the earth is yours; yours is the kingdom, O Lord, and you are exalted as head above all. Riches and honor come from you, and you rule over all. In your hand are power and might; and it is in your hand to make great and to give strength to all. And now, our God, we give thanks to you and praise your glorious name. "But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to make this freewill offering? For all things come from you, and of your own have we given you." - 1 Chronicles 29:11-14


Check out God's Abundance

God created the heavens and the earth: Genesis 1:1

Everything comes from God: 1 Chronicles 29:14

Every perfect gift is from above: James 1:17

All the silver and gold are the Lord's: Haggai 2:8

God pours out grace abundantly: 1 Timothy 1:14

God is able to provide abundant blessings: 2 Corinthians 9:8

God gives us power to gain wealth: Deuteronomy 8:18

Do not worry, God knows what you need: Matthew 6:30-34

God provides for our needs: 1 Timothy 6:17


Growing Deeper

1. Picture your most prized earthly treasure. Now visualize it sprouting wings and flying off. How do you feel about that?

2. Describe how you've experienced God's abundance.


So what does God want?

A steward is an investment manager for God who is responsible for using and giving away God's money to do God's work. God trusts you to set yourself a reasonable amount to live on and to always look for the best place to invest God's money by serving God and others.

There's a fundamental connection between our spiritual lives and how we think about and handle money. Our approach to money and possessions is central to our spiritual lives. Every day is an opportunity to store up treasures in heave3n. God gives us possessions as a tool to further God's kingdom on earth and bring others to Christ.    

Now to him who by the power at work within us is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. - Ephesians 3:20-21

Explore what God desires

Love the Lord: Matthew 22:37 

Love your neighbor:: Matthew 22:39

Give cheerfully: 2 Corinthians 9:7

Share generously: 2 Corinthians 9:13

Sow bountifully and reap bountifully: 2 Corinthians 9:6

Don't be anxious: Philippians 4:6 

Lead a life worthy of God: 1 Thessalonians 2:12

Put on faith, love and hope: 1 Thessalonians 5:8


Growing Deeper

1. What connection is there between your spiritual live and how you think about and handle money?

2. Think about your last paycheck as God's and yourself as the caretaker of it. What does God think of the way it has been used and invested for God?

I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation as you come to know him, so that, with the eyes of your heart enlightened, you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance among the saints, and what is the immeasurable greatness of his power for us who believe, according to the working of his great power. - Ephesians 1:17-19


(This information is based on the book, The Treasure Principle, by Randy Alcorn. Multnomah Publishers.)


Ways to invest in the ministry  of Jesus Christ through Prince of Peace

After you've investigated the meaning of eternal treasures, please prayerfully use this tool to help plan your giving back to God from the gifts God entrusts to you. Keep this covenant you've made with God as a reminder of your commitment to manage God's resources to further God's work on earth and store up eternal treasures.

Ministry

Being God's stewards by making a difference in the lives of the people of Prince of Peace.

Gifts to the Ministry area provide for programming, staff and regular upkeep of our facilities.

$__________ per week $__________ per month $__________ other



Outreach

Being God's stewards by making a difference in the lives of people in our community, nation and the world.

Gifts to the Outreach area provide for our benevolence giving, programs and staff.

$__________ per week $__________ per month $__________ other


Development
Being God's stewards by caring for Prince of Peace finances and properties in order to grow ministry and outreach.

Gifts to the Development area provide what is necessary for servicing the mortgage on our facilities.

$__________ per week $__________ per month $__________ other




Foundation
Being God's stewards by making a difference for future generations.

A portion of the earnings from gifts invested through The Foundation are intended to advance current programs beyond what can be done through regular giving.

$__________ per week $__________ per month $__________ other





If you would like help determining what your tithe would be, try the Tithe Calculator at www.nacba.net/tithe.htm

For more information regarding the above information or any other stewardship questions, please call Karen Odegard at 952-898-9321 or e-mail at kodegard@princeofpeaceonline.org.

For information on giving special gifts to either Prince of Peace or the Foundation, please contact Jim Sheldon (952-898-9313),  Alan Bachman (952-898-9352) or  Karen Odegard (952-898-9321).

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