February 4, 2016

Truths That Transform: Stewardship – a God’s Eye View

Last year we looked at Jacob, and how God had transformed him from a grabbing to grateful. This month, we look at the continued transformation of his life – from putting a priority on money to putting priority on honoring God.

(Genesis 43) “The famine continued, and no relief was in sight. For nearly two years, crops had failed and food had been scarce. Once already, Jacob had sent his sons to Egypt to buy grain, and they had been forced to leave one of the brothers, Simeon, in Egypt. Now, the food was again almost gone, and Jacob asked his sons to return to Egypt to buy more grain.

On their return from their first trip to Egypt, the brothers had discovered that the money they had used to buy grain had been returned to them in their sacks of grain. Now, as Jacob got ready to send them again, he instructed them to take gifts to Pharaoh’s second-in-command (not yet knowing that it was his son, Joseph!) and to take double the amount of money, returning the money that they had found in their sacks.”

What a transformation Jacob had undergone! The man who had once taken advantage of his brother (Genesis 25:29-34), tricked his father into giving him the family blessing (Genesis 27), and manipulated his uncle’s flocks to build his own wealth (Genesis 30:37-43) now insisted on treating the prince of Egypt fairly and honestly. He had no plans to ever meet this man personally and no reason to believe that the money in the sacks would come back to haunt him. What happened to bring Jacob to this point?

First, Jacob had had multiple encounters with God and had been assured of God’s care and provision (Genesis 28, 32). He had come to recognize God as the true source of all he owned.

Second, Jacob had learned when to say, “enough”. On meeting his brother Esau, he had given this testimony of God’s faithfulness: “God has been gracious to me, and I have all I need.” (Genesis 33:11). No longer concerned about accumulating all he could, Jacob had sent lavish gifts ahead to his brother in hopes of a reconciliation. Other priorities besides worldly wealth now dominated Jacob’s mindset.

Finally, Jacob was aware that Someone else was watching – One who valued integrity and character. He appealed to God, his Provider, Protector, and Sustainer, for mercy on his sons’ journey to Egypt – little realizing at the time how God had already set his merciful plan into motion years before!

Stewardship is about more than earning, giving, saving, and spending. It’s about our attitude toward money, and about the character that’s revealed in how we handle money, especially in our dealings with others. Integrity – from simple things like returning excessive change at the counter to more complex things like business dealings and taxes – is noticed. Sometimes it’s noticed by non-believers around us and testifies to the character of God. But it’s always noticed by God.

Good Sense Movement Team
Good Sense Movement
Transforming Finances! Transforming Lives!