Keep building in faith!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Stewardship

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

James 5:7 Be patient therefore, brethren, unto the coming of the Lord. Behold, the husbandman waiteth for the precious fruit of the earth, and hath long patience for it, until he receive the early and latter rain.

If you ever have the chance to visit Jerusalem, one place you must see is Solomon's quarries – also known as Zedekiah's cave.It's a gigantic underground quarry beneath the old city of Jerusalem, an amazing archeological site which offers a glimpse of the handiwork of the builders of the first temple of King Solomon.  Can you imagine, as the Temple was under construction, what the craftsmen and the builders must have been thinking about this glorious house they were building?

Carpenters from Lebanon gathering cedar timbers, laborers moving building materials from Joppa, stonemasons cutting and honing stones – their imaginations must have been filled with expectation and wonder as the awesome heavenly plans given to King David materialized under their meticulous construction.  Each of them had a part and a glimpse of its glory as he worked, waiting, anticipating… the final manifestation of the glory of the completed Temple!

Each of us is also a builder, but our building is a living Temple, and we are also living stones of this Temple of the living God.  In our daily labors, we can catch a glimpse of the glory as we watch His image forming in ourselves and in those around us– but we can hardly begin to imagine the full splendor of His completed Bridal Temple!I'm sure there were times when the workers of Solomon's Temple felt weary after a long hard day of work – but those memories had to be completely erased when they finally beheld the Temple in its glory!  So if you're feeling weary and tired – just remember, you are building something magnificent, and the sacrifices of your labor today, will be returned a hundredfold by the generosity and joy of your Heavenly Bridegroom!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Stewardship

Remain Faithful!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Stewardship

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

1 Corinthians 4:2 Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.

In the early 1800's a preacher gave a message to call men to join him on the mission field in Africa. In the audience were only a few women along with a boy. The pastor knew that few women were expected to volunteer to face harsh African jungle conditions. However, he gave the message; and no one responded. What he didn't realize was that he had touched the heart of a little boy whose name was David Livingstone. This boy would grow up to spend the rest of his life ministering to Africa's unreached tribes.

David Livingstone was touched by the faithfulness of a pastor who gave his message when there seemed to be no obvious fruit from its delivery – and that made all the difference! The lesson is this: we are not in charge of results, but only responsible to be faithful to what God has given us to do. You may not be seeing any fruit from your obedient labor at the moment – it may appear next week, next year or a century from now, but in its time the fruit will appear, and may be greater than you could have ever imagined. Heaven will, one day, reveal the fruit of lives we have touched by our faithfulness!

Be encouraged – and don't give up. Your faithful stewardship will produce its true harvest which will never fade or pass away!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Stewardship

You can't escape it!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Stewardship

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

1 Corinthians 15:55-58 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, immoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.

Every day roughly 150,000 around the world die. Death has a way of raising our spiritual temperature and quickening us to re-evaluate life…especially to ask, "Am I doing all that I can do?"

Have you ever heard of how the Nobel Peace Prize originated?

Alfred Nobel, the inventor of dynamite, awoke one morning in 1888, shocked to discover his own obituary in the morning news. The newspaper had mistakenly printed the story about Alfred, instead of his brother, who had just passed away. As he read his own epitaph, the story of the "Dynamite King", the great industrialist who made an immense fortune from explosives — Alfred Nobel was rudely awakened to the fact that the world viewed him as a merchant of death! The mistake was not wasted on him. Rather, it served as his wake up call!

As he read his obituary with horror, Alfred resolved to make clear to the world his understanding of the true meaning and purpose of his life. So he used his immense fortune to create a foundation which would promote and embody his ideal for world peace…and he is now remembered, not as the "Dynamite King", but the creator of what we know now as the "Nobel Peace Prize."

Let's allow this little message to be our wake up call. Let's re-evaluate our lives, look within…and ask ourselves, "Are we truly doing all that we can be doing for the Lord?" Because when this life is finally past, and our deeds are all recorded in the "Books", only what was done with and for the Lord, will last…forever!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Stewardship

Multiply Your Talents!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Stewardship

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions

Matthew 25:26-29 But his lord answered and said to him, 'You wicked and slothful servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. Then you should have put my money on deposit with the bankers, and on my coming I would have received my money back with interest. Therefore take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents. For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away.

Reading this parable, we are struck by the serious consequences of failing to produce Kingdom fruit. But there's something I want to particularly point out. Many of the great heroes of the faith — people like Moses and David, were not given great responsibilities immediately. Each of these men first served as a lowly shepherd, tending sheep. Having tested them first in this humble vocation, God then felt confident to elevate them to positions of greatness — but it all started with a small step!

God is testing his saints in the little things — as we pass our early tests, the Lord will promote us to greater things. Don't despise the day of small things — a single talent invested wisely can produce a bountiful harvest! And remember that it begins with faithful stewardship of whatever gift or talent that God has allocated to you.

Let's be wise stewards in these last days, using our divinely given abilities for His glory and purposes so that we can produce an abundant return on the Lord's investment in our lives. Let's heed the warning and the encouragement that Yeshua (Jesus) gives us in this parable, multiplying, rather than hiding our talent. Amen!

 

Worthy Christian Devotions » Stewardship

He's looking for a few good men (and women)!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Stewardship

by George Whitten, Editor of Worthy Devotions.

Revelation 22:12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.

The following is an excerpt from Moody's Anecdotes, a must read.

"A young man enlisted, and was sent to his regiment. The first night he was in the barracks with about fifteen other young men, who passed the time playing cards and gambling. Before retiring, he fell on his knees and prayed, and they began to curse him and jeer at him and throw boots at him. So it went on the next night and the next, and finally the young man went and told the chaplain what had taken place, and asked what he should do. 'Well,' said the chaplain, 'you are not at home now, and the other men have just as much right to the barracks as you have. It makes them mad to hear you pray, and the Lord will hear you just as well if you say your prayers in bed and don't provoke them.'

For weeks after the chaplain did not see the young man again, but one day he met him, and asked – 'By the way, did you take my advice?' 'I did, for two or three nights,' [the soldier answered.] 'How did it work?' 'Well,' said the young man, 'I felt like a whipped hound and the third night I got out of bed, knelt down and prayed.' 'Well,' asked the chaplain, 'How did that work?' The young soldier answered: 'We have a prayer meeting there now every night, three have been converted, and we are praying for the rest.'

Oh, friends, I am so tired of weak Christianity. Let us be out and out for Christ; let us give no uncertain sound. If the world wants to call us fools, let them to it. It is only a little while; the crowning day is coming. Thank God for the privilege we have of confessing Christ."

Need we say more? Let's ask the Lord to touch our lives with power today. That we may be released from our stresses, our problems and even our own desires — that we may become focused on being available for the task at hand. There's so much work to be done!

Worthy Christian Devotions » Stewardship