A Good Steward

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1 Peter 4:10 “Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.”

“Faithfully administering God’s grace” is a little free in its rendering of Peter’s words. The Greek reads more literally, “a good steward of God’s grace.” As much as this wants to emphasize what you do, it wants to describe who you are even more. When you use your gifts to serve, you are a God’s steward, a good steward who cares for God’s gifts the way he intends.

Stewardship is not a new concept to most of us. In the household of a wealthy man, the steward was the master’s most trusted servant. He was the manager to whom the owner could entrust everything else he had. Joseph was the steward in Potiphar’s house. Joseph was responsible for overseeing and taking care of everything Potiphar owned.

It comes as no surprise that God asks us to trust him. No being has ever proved more trustworthy than our Lord, who still loves us even when we have despised him, graciously saved us from our sin, and faithfully provides for us every day. What’s not to trust? Peter is right when he says two chapters earlier, “The one who trusts in him will never be put to shame” (2:6).

It beggars belief that God should trust us as his stewards. But that is exactly what he does. And the trust he has placed into our hands affects more than the smooth running of a home or the success of a business. How we use his gifts to serve others, whether we use his gifts to serve others, can affect the eternal fate of the souls he died to save.

Just the same, you and I are his stewards, servants of the living God into whose hands he has placed gifts for service to his kingdom. No king has ever claimed a higher title, no celebrity has ever claimed a higher honor, than the one that God has graciously entrusted to us. We are stewards of God’s grace, and that trust is one that ennobles you and me.

Sometimes we need some straightening out on this whole concept of serving. Jesus once delivered an attitude adjustment to help his disciples understand who they were, and who they should aspire to be, “Whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

We are the servants of the Servant, who gave his life to serve us. Use his gifts, then, to serve each other.

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