Stewardship Soundings – Become a good receiver from God
Focus scripture: Luke 14:25-35, in which Jesus teaches his disciples (students, including us) the cost of being a real disciple.
In this passage, Jesus says that he isn’t interested in half-hearted followers. He’s not interested in building up attendance numbers. Rather, he tells us that being a follower is going to be costly. He says we need to “hate father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and even life itself”.
Perhaps, Jesus doesn’t mean “hate” as in the opposite of “love”; for that would be in opposition to other teachings of Jesus where he commands us to love others, even our enemies. Perhaps Jesus is making a comparison of attention or the way we strive after things.
We admit with our mind that our family is given life by God and that it is God’s good pleasure that they are in our life. So, do we to treat our family as people special to us? Or, do we treat our family as people special to God?
Perhaps Jesus is saying that we tend to value family and life more than we value God. Might Jesus be saying that if we are not willing to let go of our hold on family and life, we prove we value them more than we value God?
Perhaps, Jesus is saying that in order to be a true disciple we must be willing:
“We are a society that encourages greed over giving, hoarding over sharing, and overabundance as a marker of social status over the elimination of poverty. What humans have created, we can eliminate by daily recommitting ourselves to the God who loves compassion, mercy, and justice and hates poverty, greed, inequity, and injustice”
(Mitzi J. Smith, J. Davison Philips Professor of New Testament, Columbia Theological Seminary, Decatur, Ga., written on www.WorkingPreacher.org, September 8, 2019). That is stewardship.