Transferring the Title Deed to God
"Present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God." -Romans 12:1-2, emphasis added
God owns all things, whether we recognize it or not. But life becomes much clearer, and in some respects much easier, when we consciously and continuously choose to acknowledge that Truth. The question is not whether we theoretically affirm God's ownership. The question is whether we have deliberately transferred the ownership of our assets and ourselves to Him-like that sweet little white-haired lady who wanted to sell me her car when I was a teenager. It was hers, and no matter how much she told me she wanted me to have it, it was not mine until she relinquished the title deed to it; then it became mine. We can talk about God, and sing numerous songs of commitment, but until we actually give our all to Him, it is not real.
Have you invited Him to be what Scripture says He is--the Creator, Owner, and Controller of your family, your possessions, your money, and yourself? And have you extended the invitation again after you have taken things back into your own hands? Such self-surrender to God is the beginning of true stewardship.
When we come to grasp that we are stewards, not owners of our money, it totally changes our perspective. Suddenly we are no longer asking, "How much of my money shall I, out of the goodness of my heart, give to God?" Rather, we are asking, "Since all of my money is really Yours, Lord, how would You like me to invest it today?"
Commonly, most Christians reverse this. Instead, they think that it is really magnanimous of them to give God something. But in reality, it is all His anyway, so how much are you keeping of His money? His time? His talents?
It was revolutionary when I truly realized that God has a claim on 100 percent of "my money"--not just a few dollars to throw in an offering plate, or whatever percentage I was willing to give Him. Suddenly I was God's steward, God's money manager. I am not God. Money is not God. God is God. He is in His place, and I am in mine.
We must remind ourselves of both God's role and ours to gain perspective in the face of loss or turmoil. What a life-changing and freeing perspective is God's ownership and sovereignty when the house is robbed, the car is totaled, the bike is stolen, and even when the diagnosis is cancer. We thus can think: It is not my life; it is not my body; my possessions are not mine. They belong to God. Accordingly, we have two choices:
1. We can give ourselves to God: "They gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God's will" (2 Corinthians 8:5, NIV). It is easier to staff the material needs and ministry positions of a church if this is obeyed absolutely and positively.
2. We can neglect to give ourselves to God and live for our own pleasure: "This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God" (Luke 12:21, NIV).
Do you believe that God owns you? Have you acknowledged that to Him? Will you relinquish the anxious care of stuff and the continuous calculating of whether you will have enough? Will you trust God to tell you when He wants some of it, and how to be a steward of it?
If you send your treasures ahead to be with Christ, you will never have to worry about which way the markets go. And you won't have to fret about lightning strikes, tornadoes, or floods--because He is the Master of the winds and the waves. You can safely entrust all that you have to the care and control of your Almighty God.
Make a Choice to Live in Hope: When we come to Christ, God puts all His resources at our disposal. He also expects us to put all our resources at His disposal. This is what stewardship and life in Christ is all about.
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