THE STEWARDSHIP OF OUR TREASURES

What is the true meaning of stewardship? The definition of stewardship is the careful and responsible management of something entrusted to one’s care. What do we hold most valuable in our lives? What are our treasure that we hold most dear? The definition of treasures are the somethings that we hold great value to us. This article will focus on how we should manage our treasure in our lives. If you believe God or something created man and the universe then you also have to conclude that the creator has the power over all that they or God created. Meaning that to main focus of this article is concerning how God wants us to manage all that He has created or given to us.

Let’s start with money since we all need this form of our treasure to survive in most cases. It is stated in the word of God in 1 Timothy 6:10… 10 For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, for which some have strayed from the faith in their greediness, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows... What the scripture is talking about is greed leads to all kinds of evil, such as marriage problems, robbery as well as blowups in partnerships. To master greed you must control it at its root. This means to get rid of your desire to be rich. To some this statement might be strange to say that it is a sin to be rich. Read the scripture carefully it states ‘the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil, not have money or acquiring wealth. God doesn’t really have a problem with rich people, but God does have a problem with rich people who places money over all other things one would need to live by. A great example of this is stated in Luke 16:19-31… 19 “There was a certain rich man who was clothed in purple and fine linen and fared sumptuously every day. 20 But there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, full of sores, who was laid at his gate, 21 desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell[a] from the rich man’s table. Moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. 22 So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s bosom. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 And being in torments in Hades, he lifted up his eyes and saw Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom. 24 “Then he cried and said, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus that he may dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.’ 25 But Abraham said, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things; but now he is comforted and you are tormented. 26 And besides all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed, so that those who want to pass from here to you cannot, nor can those from there pass to us.’ 27 “Then he said, ‘I beg you therefore, father, that you would send him to my father’s house, 28 for I have five brothers, that he may testify to them, lest they also come to this place of torment.’ 29 Abraham said to him, ‘They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them.’ 30 And he said, ‘No, father Abraham; but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ 31 But he said to him, ‘If they do not hear Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded though one rise from the dead... In New Testament days the Pharisees considered wealth to be a proof of a person’s righteousness. Jesus startled them with this story where a diseased beggar is rewarded and a rich man is punished. The rich man did not go to hell because of his wealth but because he was selfish, refusing to feed or take care of Lazarus, the beggar. The rich man was hardheaded in spite of his great blessings. The amount of money we have is not as important as the way we use it. What is your attitude toward your money and possessions? Do you hoard them selfishly, or do you use them to help others? God wants us to manage our money wisely to help others and not just ourselves.

One last point about money. Many Christians don’t give a tenth of what they earn (or what is called the tithe) to the ministry of Christ or the church. According to Malachi 3:10… Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this,”
Says the Lord of hosts, “If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you 
such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it in this passage of scripture the storehouse was the place in the temple for storing grain and other food given as tithes. The priest lived off these gifts or tithes, much like the Christian church survives off the tithes we give today. Malachi, the prophet, was urging the people to stop holding back their tithes, to stop keeping from God what He deserved. The people during this period ignored God’s command to give the tithe of their income to God’s temple. They may have feared losing what they had worked so hard to get, but in this they misjudged God. In Luke 6:38… ‘Give, and it will be given to you…’ When we give we must remember that the blessings God promises are not always material and May not be experience completely here on earth, but we will certainly receive them in our future life with God. So as Christians we must give the tithe (which God commands us to give a tenth of our income) because at the end of the today it is all of God’s money anyway!!!

Next, I would think that our relationships with others would be another form of treasure we may need in our lives. Regarding our relationships we are talking about our marriages friendships, business partnerships, as well as co-workers relationship. The word of God has many references in the way we must treat others people, but the central one in the word of God is in Romans 12:9-13…Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil. Cling to what is good.10 Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another; 11 not lagging in diligence, fervent in spirit, serving the Lord; 12 rejoicing in hope, patient in tribulation, continuing steadfastly in prayer; 13 distributing to the needs of the saints, given to hospitality most of us have learned to pretend to love others – how to speak kindly, avoid hurting their feelings, and appear to take an interest in them. We may even be skilled in pretending to feel moved with compassion when we hear of others’ needs, or to become indignant when we learn of injustice. But God calls us to real and sincere love that goes far beyond pretense and politeness. Since love requires concentration and effort. It means helping others become better people. It demands our time, money and personal involvement. We can honor others in one of two ways. One involves ulterior motives. We honor our bosses so they will reward us, our employees so they will work harder, the wealthy so they will contribute to our cause, the powerful so they will use their power for us not against us. God’s other way involves love. As Christians, we honor people because they have been created in God’s image, because they are our brothers and sister in Christ, and because that have a unique contribution to make to Christ’s church. Does God’s way of honoring others sound too difficult for your competitive nature? Why not try outdo one another in honor? Put other first!!! Christian hospitality differs from social entertaining. Entertaining focuses on the host- the home must be spotless, the food must be well prepared and abundant, and the host must appear relaxed and good-natured. Hospitality, by contrast, focuses on the guest. Their needs- whether for a place to stay, nourishing food, a listening ear, or acceptance – are the primary concern. Hospitality can happen in a messy home. It can happen around a dinner table where the main dish is canned soup. It can happen while the host and the guest are doing chores together. Don’t hesitate to offer hospitality just because you are too tired, too busy, or not wealthy enough to entertain.

Being a good steward with what God has given us means that whatever you may hold as valuable, God may require you to change what is valuable to you. No greater passage of scripture is this illustrated that in Luke 12:16-21… 16 Then He spoke a parable to them, saying: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded plentifully. 17 And he thought within himself, saying, ‘What shall I do, since I have no room to store my crops?’ 18 So he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build greater, and there I will store all my crops and my goods. 19 And I will say to my soul, “Soul, you have many goods laid up for many years; take your ease; eat, drink, and be merry.”’ 20 But God said to him, ‘Fool! This night your soul will be required of you; then whose will those things be which you have provided?’ The rich man in Jesus’ story died before he could begin to use what was stored in his big barns. Planning for retirement – preparing for life before death – is wise, but neglecting life after death is disastrous. If you accumulate wealth only to enrich yourself, with no concern for helping others, you will enter eternity empty-handed. Essentially this means you take what of value with to your grave. Regardless whether you are a Christian or not you should be more concern on you treat or help others than what you may want to do with your treasures. I have submitted a gospel video related to this article. Enjoy this video. Always remember “Keep the Faith and God Loves You and So Do I”.

What do you think? Your comments are welcome!!!

Written by Kofi Baruti

GETTING COURAGE THROUGH ALL YOUR DIFFICULTIES IN LIFE

Many of us whether we are Christians or not will go through difficulties and trails in our life. There are many reasons why we may go through these difficulties in our lives. It may be because we made bad decisions in our lives. It may be someone or people who are causing these difficulties. It could be our own desires that cause these difficulties. Whatever, reason why we go through these difficulties or trails will not be the focus of this article. The major focus of this article will be how we handle, respond or react to these difficulties or trails in our lives. More specifically the courage we may or may have when we are going through these difficulties and trails. This article will express the steps you will need to get or find courage through the word of God.

In the word of God it states in Deuteronomy 31:5-7… The Lord will give them over to you, that you may do to them according to every commandment which I have commanded you. Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.” Then Moses called Joshua and said to him in the sight of all Israel, “Be strong and of good courage, for you must go with this people to the land which the Lord has sworn to their fathers to give them, and you shall cause them to inherit it...Moses commissions Joshua to led his people the Israelites to the land God had promise them. God knew this was going to be difficult so God encourage Moses and Joshua to have courage because God will be with them in all there difficulties. It further states in the word of God in Joshua 10:25… 2Then Joshua said to them, “Do not be afraid, nor be dismayed; be strong and of good courage, for thus the Lord will do to all your enemies against whom you fight.” … with God’s help Israel won the battle against five Amorite armies. Such a triumph was part of God’s daily business as He Worked with the people for victory. Joshua told his men never to be afraid because similar victories over all their enemies. God has often protected us and won victories for us. The same God who empowered Joshua and who had had led us in the past will help us with our present and future needs, meaning in this case our present and future trails. Reminding ourselves of God’s help in the past will give us hope and courage for the struggles that lie ahead.

I also state in the word of God in Psalms 27:14… Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord! … in this scripture David knew from experience what it meant to wait for the Lord. He had been anointed king st age 16, but didn’t become king until he was 30. During the interim, he was chased through the wilderness by jealous king Saul. David had to wait on God for the fulfillment of his promise of reign. Later becoming king, he was chased by his rebellious son, Absalon. Waiting for God is not easy.. Often it seems that He isn’t answering our prayers or doesn’t understand the urgency of our situation. That kind of thinking implies that God is not in control or is not fair. But God is worth waiting for. Make good use of your period of waiting to discover what is God trying to teach you in all your trails.

So with all that has been previously written here are the three basic steps to gaining courage in our difficulties or trails. First, recognize that God is in control, to a Christian that might seen very obvious, to a non-believer maybe. Jesus said in Matthew 19:26… 26 But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”Jesus states in this scripture told his disciples anyone can be saved, but not by mankind but through the power of God. It is further demonstrated the God in control in John 5:5-9… Now a certain man was there who had an infirmity thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there, and knew that he already had been in that condition a long time, He said to him, “Do you want to be made well?” The sick man answered Him, “Sir, I have no man to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; but while I am coming, another steps down before me.” Jesus said to him, “Rise, take up your bed and walk.”And immediately the man was made well, took up his bed, and walked. And that day was the Sabbath. 10 The Jews therefore said to him who was cured, “It is the Sabbath; it is not lawful for you to carry your bed.”After 38 years, this man’s problem had become a way of life. No one had ever help him. He had no hope of ever being healed and no desire to help himself. The man’s situation looked hopeless. But no matter how trapped you feel in your infirmities, God can minister to your ddespest needs. Don’t let a problem or hardship cause you to lose hope. God may have special work for you to do in spite of your condition, or even because of it. Many have ministered effectively to hurting people because they have triumphed over their own hurts or trails. This man hadn’t walker in 38 years and was healed, but the Pharisees were more concern about their petty rules than the life and health of human being. It is so easy to get caught up in our man-made structures and rules that we forget the people involved. Are your guidelines for living God-made or man-made? Are you helping people, or have they become needless stumbling blocks? Knowing that God is always in control we all can find the courage over coming our trails in life.

Second, we must believe that God can do what He has promise through our prayers. Jesus said, in Matthew 7:7-8… “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened. .. Jesus tells us to persist in pursuing God. People often give up after a few halfhearted efforts and conclude that God cannot be found or help in your situations or trails. But knowing God takes faith, focus, and follow-through, and Jesus assures us that we will be rewarded. Don’t give up in your efforts to seek God or ask God to give you the courage to face your trails. You must continue to ask God for more knowledge, patience, wisdom, love and understanding. God will give you your courage to face all you difficulties and trials in your life.

The last step to obtaining your courage in your difficulties or trails is that you must wait on the Lord. In the word of God in Isaiah 40:31… But those who wait on the Lord Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faintWaiting on the Lord is expecting that his promise of strength will help us to rise above life’s distractions-and difficulties. It also means trusting in God. Trusting helps us to be prepared when God speaks to us. Then we will be patient when he ask us to wait and expect God to fulfill the promises found in his Word. Trusting in God is the key in waiting on the Lord, because you don’t have to worry about what will happen to you while you are waiting on God to help overcome your trails. Jesus also states in Matthew 6:34… 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble… Planning for tomorrow is time well spent, worrying about tomorrow is time wasted. Sometimes it’s difficult to tell the difference. Careful planning is thinking ahead about your goals or trails you may face. Then trusting in God’s guidance. When done well it in most cases eliminate your worries and you will have the courage tom face your difficulties and trails. Once you have conquered any worries about your trails in your life you will have the courage to face all the situation that may come your way in life. I have submitted a gospel video related to this article. Enjoy the video. Always remember, “Keep the Faith, and God Loves You and So Do I!”

What do you think? Your comments are welcome!!!

Written by Kofi Baruti

A NEW LIFE WITH CHRIST

We all or at most of us are welcoming the new 2017. What will your life be like in 2017? Will you be the same person you have always been or will you have a new or different life? You can have a new life with Christ. But what does that mean to have a new life with Christ? Whether you are a non-believer or you have just join the body of Christ, this article will focus the actions of what any Christian should do to have a life with Christ. This article is about what it means to have a new life with Jesus Christ.

When someone joins the church of Christ he or she become a new creature as it is stated in the bible in 2 Corinthians 5:17… 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become newChristians are brand-new people on the inside. The Holy Spirit gives them new life, and they are not the same anymore. We are not reformed, rehabilitated, or reeducated – we are re-created (new creatures), living in vital union with Christ. At conversion we are not merely turning over a new leaf, we are beginning a new life under a new Master, Jesus Christ. To most people this essentially means you have a different attitude or outlook on your life. For example, if someone was an addict before they came to Christ, they are no longer an addict when they turn their life over to Christ. Why because as stated above the Holy Spirit (which in this case Christ dwelling inside you) you are given the courage and resolve to quit your addiction). With this attitude your old life will be no more as you begin to live your new life with Christ.

You don’t have to be an addict to come to a new life with Christ. You can be anyone who desires to have a more fulfilling life. For example, anyone never been in trouble with the law, never became addict to any drugs, or stayed away from the street. This person is basically a good person. But they may feel something is missing in their life. They don’t know exactly was it is but something is just not right or they don’t feel fulfilled in their life. One day they may attend a church service and during that service or after sermon or message was given they decide to try Jesus Christ. To them they may have tried everything else during life why not try Christ. Perhaps it something the minister said in their sermon or maybe it was a song they heard during the service. Everyone will come to Christ in their own way. So you do what is stated in Romans 10:9-10… that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Now that you are a new creature in Christ what actions should take to have a new life with Christ? I believe the first thing you must do is get a good instructional bible. It really doesn’t matter what version of the bible as long as it makes sense to you. Why is this so important? It is because in the world of sin in which we live you will need a guide to help to stay on track to your new life with Christ. The bible is the most important book you will ever own as stated in the bible in John 1:1… In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God What does John mean by the Word? The Word was another expression for God. John’s description shows clearly that he is speaking of Jesus- a human being he knew and loved, but at the same time the Creator of the universe, the ultimate revelation of God. The living picture of God’s holiness, the One in which all things consist. The next thing you should do to have a life with Christ is join or find a church that has a great bible study class. Now this is important because you may not understand everything in the word of God or the bible, so a great bible class will be very helpful to you in perhaps getting a better understand of the word of God.

The next actions you should take with your new life with Christ will best the greatest benefit you will ever have other than your own salvation is to pray. One the great things about being a Christians is that whatever you pray for you will receive according to your faith and God’s time table not yours. Prayer is your direct access to God as a Christian, but it is through Jesus Christ who intercedes for all of us in our prayers. In the bible it states in Matthew 7:7-8… “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened Jesus tells us to persist in pursuing God. People often give up after a few halfhearted efforts and conclude that God cannot be found. But knowing God takes faith, focus, and follow-through, and Jesus assures us that we will be rewarded. Don’t give up in your efforts to seek God. Continue to ask Him for more knowledge, patience, wisdom, love, and understanding. Jesus will give then to you.

An important action with your new life with Christ is what type of ministry you will have in this journey with Jesus. It would be highly recommended that you should not join a church with a great bible study class, but also a church that practices the ‘Gift of the Holy Spirit’ or what is known to some people a full gospel church. Many people talk about certain people speaking in tongue, healing others, comforting others, teaching others etc. in the ways of Christ. You will have to seek what role you will have in the church of Christ. In the word of God it states in 1 Corinthians 12:4-11… there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same[a] Spirit, 10 to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. 11 But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as He wills All Christians have faith. Some, however, have the spiritual gift of faith, which is an unusual measure of trust in the Holy Spirit’s power. In this passage of scripture what is meant in “Prophecy” is not just a prediction of the future, it can also mean preaching God’s Word with power. ‘Discerning of spirits’ means the ability to discern whether a person who claims to speak to God is actually doing so, or is speaking by an evil spirit. No matter what gifts a person has, each gift is given by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit decides which gifts each one of us should. We are responsible to use and sharpen our gifts, but can take no credit for what God has given freely given us.

One final thought to this new life with Christ is the ‘Great Commission’. To the non-believers the ‘Great Commission’ is the mission statement for all Christians regardless of their gifts or station in life. In the word of God in Matthew 28:16-20 states… 16 then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had appointed for them. 17 When they saw Him, they worshiped Him; but some doubted. 18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore[a] and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen God gave Jesus authority over heaven and earth. On the basis of that authority, Jesus told his disciples to make more disciples to make more disciples as they preached, baptism, and taught. With the same authority, Jesus still commands us to tell the Good News and make them disciples for the kingdom of God. Jesus assures us that why we are doing our ministry He is with us. How is Jesus with us? Jesus was with disciples physically until he ascended into heaven, and then spiritually through the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit would be the presence that would never leave his disciples. And Jesus continues to be with us today through his Spirit. I submitted a gospel video related to this article. Enjoy the video. Always remember, “Keep the Faith” and “God Loves You and So Do I”.

What do you think? Your comment are always welcome.

Written By Kofi Baruti