Stewardship is a feature of a Christian life. In many churches it is the topic of a sermon around the time of the annual accounts being presented to the church. Stewardship in a wider sense is in the news again. The Government’s commitment to a Carbon Neutral UK by 2050 forces the nation to focus on the reduction of carbon emissions. We are not doing badly so far. We emit 40% less carbon dioxide than at the base date used by the Government, but a closer look shows that air travel is not included, and shipping seems to fall to the country of registration. In other words there are major areas that need attention. But there is no denying we are making progress in many areas.
Stewardship is not a ‘governance issue’ to be left to Parliament, Local Authorities, the NHS and other ‘faceless’ bodies; stewardship comes from the heart.—its personal.
How do YOU steward your life?
Time needs to be stewarded in a busy society; do you need to review the balance of the issues that drive your day? Family, Job, Leisure, Worship….
Money is not elastic, but demand seem always to rise, entrepreneurs seem to devise new ways every year for children to pressure parents for the latest gizmo, the fashion industry changes the ‘in‘ colour and style faster than traffic lights change.
Lifestyle sucks us onward toward some imaginary state where we will ‘have it all’.
Church can suck you in too, — time, talents, commitment, leadership.
Is now, with the coming of summer, the long light evenings, the bright days, and time in the garden or at the seaside, the time to undertake a serious review of your life? A review that will involve the wider family, you church life and relationships.
What, as a Christian, are your priorities?
Where should you be investing time and talents, money and skills?
What part of your life and routine is now dated, time expired or no longer relevant?
It is interesting to observe the changes that supermarkets, grocers, fruit suppliers are making to meet the social demand for less plastic, more recycling, more re-use. People are reviewing their hopes and desires for their childrens’ future and are adjusting lifestyles.
As Christians we worship the creator of the universe. We need to review our stewardship of God’s planet. But it’s too easy to go with the flow, it takes energy and purpose to lead.
I want to challenge you to think about your life as a Christian—in all its aspects. How can you reduce the pressures, adjust your lifestyle to live a lower impact life and to enhance the world your children will inherit.
I am hopeful about environmental issues. Partly that optimism stems from the shift of public opinion in support of reducing environmental damage and restoring balance to our ways of living. I hope the changes are deep and lasting.
It is part of your reasonable service to God to ensure that for you and your family you take decisions to live simpler, quieter lives that impact far less on society; for Christians that means we need to listen to God’s leading. Take time to review as individuals and as families (and as churches) your impact on society, the planet, your town and, yes, your family too.
Dr Andrew Wright
(Chair of the JRI Board)
Image: Coins by mnplatypus on Pixabay: https://pixabay.com/photos/coins-currency-money-cash-2125366/