Treasure Principle Key #1: God owns everything. I’m His money manager.
As a freshman in college, we received a monthly stipend of $50. Thankfully they provided us with food, clothing, and shelter. We were not allowed to own anything (or at least maintain anything) aside from the items required to focus on the mission of the institution. Living in this manner relieved many responsibilities and burdens for the students. At the same time, I was growing as a young Christian. I began to give unto God (specifically to the church) $5 or ten percent of my $50 income. Many people refer to this tenth as a tithe (that’s another discussion for another day), but I have considered 10% Giving a starting point to show gratitude for the great and loving God who has given me so very much. I was always excited to give and when I began to earn more money, it was easier to give a minimum of 10% consistently because I gladly developed the discipline of giving with the small amount of $5 at the tender age of nineteen. I’m thankful to openly share God’s blessings with others.
Since everything belongs to the Lord and we are only managers of his wealth, Randy Alcorn challenges us to adopt a stewardship approach to the resources that God has given us. What does that mean? “A steward manages resources for the owner’s benefit (pg. 24).” When considering finances and assets, we should ask ourselves, “Does this expense benefit God’s work? Am I using this asset to fulfill the work outlined for the New Testament believer?”
The key is to find out what God wants us to do with the assets he entrusts to us, and then consistently follow through with action. “When we think like owners, it’s a red flag. We should be thinking like stewards, investment managers, always looking for the best place to invest the Owner’s money (pg. 25).”
Alcorn offers a few key points to assist in changing our money mindset:
- Determine a reasonable amount to live on (this amount will vary from person to person and family to family) (pg. 26)
- Commit not to hoard (store up excess) or spend the excess (pg. 26)
- Consider how your resources can impact the kingdom for Christ: explore opportunities to support evangelism and discipleship ministries, helping others who are less fortunate or those who are in need.
So what? Why consider the Treasure Principles? Here are some other key reasons: Giving brings joy. Giving is a privilege. Giving makes us more like God. Giving makes us more gracious. Giving makes us more grateful. Giving helps us extend God’s grace to others (2 Corinthians 9:6-15).
Do you often think of yourself as an owner of assets? How does this approach affect your management of his resources?
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