My yearly stewardship bible study is in full swing on Sundays. We’re utilizing materials from the ReImagining Stewardship Group. And I find myself, as in years past, reevaluating and questioning what stewardship means in the Christian church. This cycle’s question has to do with your uniqueness. Who has God made you to be? How has the Spirit uniquely gifted you? You do know, don’t you, that He has made you, and gifted you, and placed you in ministry at this time for a purpose … right?
But purpose can seem a little illusive at times. Folks that I talk to often ask me about God’s purpose; they are looking alternatively for something “to do” within the programs of the church, or else outside those programmatic structures, that will make them feel they have a stake in what God is doing in their life and ministry. The question in my mind is always the same: where does your pain (or, sometimes, righteous anger) intersect with the blessings God has given you? In other words, what kind of problem bothers you the most?
I know Christians who have problems with childlessness that have led them to work with orphans in America and elsewhere. I know godly men whose passion for a generation that has been robbed of clear male leadership has led them to work with boys and men in order to reclaim a biblical view of marriage and fatherhood. The examples could go on, but the point is that those places where God has shown you a need and uniquely equipped you to address that pain (injustice) are road signs to where He is taking you in ministry.
But when you find where it is God is leading you, are you ready to step out in faith and risk for the gospel? Risk means you could fail. Risk means you could lose. Risk means others may say unkind things of either your success or failure. But risk also means that the reward in ministry could be larger than you anticipated. And where the Spirit is leading, the risk you take isn’t with your own ability or resources. The risk is that of trusting in the God who made you the promise to be with you “even to the end of the age” in order that one more person may know His salvation.