a stewardship reflection by Aubrey Hardman
Most economists suggest we are digging ourselves out of the great-recession, jobs are slowly coming back, and the economy seems to be starting to stabilize. However, there is still a long way to go and much uncertainty remains. Where there is uncertainty there is fear and worry which drives companies to take less risk and slow growth. This feeds unemployment and stifles wage growth that curtails consumer spending which in large part is the fuel of the American Economy. Therefore, fear and worry limits economic growth. I wonder how many of us are allowing fear and worry of the unknown to limit our spiritual growth.
Working in the Finance industry, I have made a career out of quantifying the risks of the unknown to mitigate financial exposure for my shareholders. I’ve made numerous recommendations to limit investment due to uncertainty. It will come as no surprise that I applied this same level of rigor to my personal finances as well. I paid attention to personal finance gurus and started early in my career mitigating financial exposure for my family through paying off all debt, building a cash reserve, starting and contributing to Roth IRAs, maximizing my 401K contributions, taking out additional life insurance beyond what my employer provided, etc., etc., etc. No amount of money that I saved was enough. I was so consumed with fear of protecting my family against the unknown that I didn’t realize I had also stopped making the spiritual investments for my family and my spiritual growth. I was no longer allowing God to participate on our lives. Overtime, it’s easy to trust in yourself and not God.
Stewardship is the act of letting go of fear and uncertainty and allowing ourselves to trust in and grow through God. It’s acknowledging that everything that we have is a gift from God with which we are entrusted to employ to do His works on the earth. Why would God give us less than we need to do the works He calls us to do? God gives us everything we need to succeed. It’s up to us to realize that – through God – we will always have what we need to succeed and finally let go of fear and worry of the unknown because no matter what challenges lie ahead, as long as we open the eyes of our heart to God’s guidance, we will see that He has given us everything we need to rise victoriously to His will.
Stewardship is a testament of this awakening to us and our community in faith. I dare you to let go of fear and worry with me and begin to take spiritual risks in uncertain times and be the growth the world needs.