What are the Foundations of Good Stewardship

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You work hard after school or over the summer to save your money for something. So learning how to have good stewardship over your money is an important part of both your faith and your daily life. The Bible actually speaks more about money than it does about love, which may seem odd, but the love of money can be quite a corrupting thing. Also, learning to manage your money well can help you be a more responsible Christian and adult.

In Luke 19:11-27, Jesus tells a parable of the 10 minas that describes how important it is to be good stewards over our faith and our lives. Good stewardship is an important spiritual discipline, so here are some important ways to demonstrate strong Christian stewardship in your life:

Understand What You Have is God's

Good stewardship begins with the foundational understanding that the things we have, including our money, are blessings from God. We need to accept that the things we own belong to God. This means that we need to be responsible about the money we earn and how we use it. We should look at our possessions as a treasure God has provided, and we should understand the privilege of having such things.  After all, God is giving us an opportunity to have the things we do, to worship as we will, to control where we go and what we do.  We should care for those things and honor Him through what He provides for us.

Stewardship Means Using Your Treasure

If you have money and material possessions, it means God is trusting you to use those things responsibly. Being a good steward, whether it's over your finances or faith, does not mean hiding your hoarding what you have and never letting it see the light of day. It also doesn't mean spending it all or giving it away willy nilly.

We have to use our relationship with God to see how we should use the money and possessions He has provided.  This means spending time in scripture and prayer learning about His expectations for us.

Giving Back to God

In order to use the money and things God has given, it is important that we give back to Him. Sure, you might put your money away for college one day, but you should makes sure we give back to God in ways that he expects. For some denominations giving back means tithing 10 percent of our income. For others it means giving what we can to the poor. Sometimes good stewardship means going through the things we own and giving them away to those who are in greater need. Even if we're not talking about financial stewardship, we can give of other blessings God provides like intelligence, time, energy.  There are many ways to be a good steward over God's blessings and give back.

Understand You Can't Take it With You

Sure, we need to put some money away for things in our future, like college. Yet, when our love of things or money come before our faith we can lose sight of what is important. Good stewardship means having balance between saving and giving, and it takes practice and discipline.

We should always keep in mind that no matter how many computers, cars, iPods, shoes, purses, etc. that we have, when we are no longer here it will just be us and God. Just like we are reminded in 1 Tim 6:7, a good steward knows we really can't take it with us.