Week of September 2, 2018

Tracy Welliver wrote a book titled Everyday Stewardship.  In his book he asks the question, “How does Jesus Christ call to us in everyday circumstances of our life?  If we are people outwardly active in our faith we can see God working in our lives at monumental moments:  the birth of a child, the death of a loved one, or the offer of a new job.  Because we at least attend Mass most Sundays and pray before meals and bedtime, we have alerted our senses enough to see God as present in major life moments.  What about hearing the voice of God in the ordinary, mundane, and even boring moments of our lives?  That can be a different story.  However, finding moments of our lives?  That can be a different story.  However, finding God there is at the core of real transformation as a faithful steward.

We believe that all comes from God as gift and that we are to cultivate it and return it with increase to God, then we mean ALL.  When we talk about gifts of time, talent, and treasure, we often focus too heavily on that which we offer to our parish community or favorite charities.  But ALL means ALL.  The time I spend at the parish working with children in a faith formation class is very important, but so is the time I spend at home alone in the quiet.  Giving my talent by singing in the church choir is definitely good stewardship, but so is the making of a sandwich for a child’s lunch.  The money I take out of my wallet and place in the collection basket belongs to God, but so does the rest of the money that goes back into my pocket.  When we begin to understand that my life is permeated with all the gifts God has given me, then we can begin to be mindful of God in all circumstances.  Suddenly, God is with me at every turn and I have the opportunity to be a good steward throughout the entire day.

Can you see how this understanding can transform a person?  As my own understanding of stewardship developed, I began seeing my children differently.  Before, they were my kids.  It was my job to be the best parent I could be.  They were gifts from God, but they were mine.  Then I began to see them not as mine but God’s.  They were given to me, but not forever, so they were not in the same sense mine.  They belonged to God.  It was no longer my job to be a good parent, it was my calling to help them become the best people possible and impart to them a love for Jesus, because I was going to give them back someday.  Furthermore, parenting became less about the big stuff and more about the everyday encounters.  I realized that God was there with us not only for the triumphs and disappointments of childhood, but also when the request came to shoot some hoops in the driveway.  I always saw the importance of being a disciple of Jesus Christ in my life on a daily basis, but now I saw the importance of being a disciple in my everyday life.  Stewardship is not just about living a way of life every day, it is about our normal EVERYDAY LIFE!  (Everyday Stewardship, Tracy Earl Welliver, MTS)

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