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Stewardship Universal Law Gal.6

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STEWARDSHIP: A UNIVERSAL LAW

GAL. 6:7-10

INTRO: ANDREW MURRAY: THE WORLD ASKS WHAT DOES A MAN OWN? CHRIST ASKS HOW DOES A MAN USE WHAT HE HAS? CHURCHILL: WE MAKE A LIVING BY WHAT WE GET—WEMAKE A LIFE BY WHAT WE GIVE-----POSSESSIONS DON’T DEFINE A PERSON—A BIG KEY IS USING WHAT WE HAVE TO IMPACT GODS KINGDOM AND SERVE OTHERS SINCE ALL THINGS OF THIS LIFE WILL ONE DAY BE BURNED UP (2 PET. 3:10)—WE CAN BE GENEROUS WHEN WE LIVE OR WHEN WE DIE BUT ONE DAY IT ALL GOES. JOHN ORTBERG BOOK “WHEN THE GAME IS OVER IT ALL GOES BACK IN THE BOX”—HE WROTE OF PLAYING MONOPOLY WITH HIS GRANDMOTHER & NEITHER LIKED TO LOSE BUT WHEN GAME WAS OVER IT ALL WENT IN THE BOX.

THIS PASSAGE HAS TO DO WITH LIVING A LIFE PLEASING TO GOD—HONORING HIM BEFORE OURSELVES—PRINCIPLE OF REAPING & SOWING—CONTINUING TO DO GOOD & WAITING FOR GOD TO BRING THE HARVEST.  WHEN WE LIVE IN A DEBT CONDITION (PHYSICALLY OR SPIRITUALLY) WE MISS BLESSINGS FOR OURSELVES/FAMILIES/CHURCH/NATION. SO HOW WILL WE CHOOSE TO INVEST OUR LIVES & MONEY

I.                  THE SPIRITUAL FALLOUT OF DEBT

A.   DEBT KEEPS US FROM “SOWING” TO GOD’S WORK –LIVING IN DEBT RESTRICTS WHAT WE CAN GIVE TO KINGDOM WORK AND HELP OTHERS. MANY CHRISTIANS SEE GIVING AS ANOTHER DEBT OBLIGATION INSTEAD OF A WAY TO BLESS OTHERS & RECEIVE BLESSINGS—EPH.4:28 ENCOURAGES US TO GIVE SO WE CAN HAVE SOMETHING TO SHARE WITH THOSE IN NEED.  (EX: BOY HELPED BY IRS AGENT)  GIVING IS NOT MATTER OF OBLIGATION OR GUILT BUT OF HEART.

B.   DEBT REDUCES OUR CONFIDENCE IN GOD—DEBT OFTEN LEADS TO DEPRESSION/FEAR. WHEN WE LIVE IN FEAR WE DOUBT AND DON’T RELY ON GOD. SATAN WILL USE FINANCIAL STRESS TO STEAL OUR  JOY.

C.   COMMON REASONS FOR GETTING INTO DEBT

1.     UNABLE OR UNWILLING TO MANAGE MONEY

2.     SELFISHNESS—WE JUST WANT TOO MUCH  (EX: BOY IN STORE & CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES)

3.     IMPATIENCE—WE MUST HAVE IT NOW! PEOPLE CAN MAX OUT ONE CARD & GET ANOTHER—GET INTO VICIOUS CYCLE TRYING TO KEEP UP THE CASH FLOW-OFTEN JUST ENOUGH TO MAKE NEXT PAYMENT.  AVG. CREDIT CARD IS OVER $8,000 & AVG. CAR PAYMENT IS $464

II.               STAND AGAINST THE ENEMY’S SCHEMES

YES WE BATTLE OUR OWN SELFISH DESIRES & SATAN LOVES TO EXPLOIT THOSE AND SET UP STRONGHOLDS IN OUR WEAK AREAS—ALL TO DRAW US AWAY FROM DEPENDENCE ON GOD.  BUT WE CAN CHOOSE TO SEEK THE LORD (PS.34:4 “I SOUGHT THE LORD & HE ANSWERED. HE DELIVERED ME FROM ALL MY FEARS; JA.4:8 “COME NEAR TO GOD AND HE WILL COME NEAR TO YOU” ; 1 PET.5:7 CAST ALL YOUR ANXIETY ON HIM. GOD CAN DELIVER US FROM ANY TRAP THE DEVIL SETS. SATAN LOVES TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF OUR EMOTIONAL WEAKNESS

A.   FEELINGS OF INFERIORITY—SOMETIMES WE

FEEL BETTER IF WE CAN BUY SOMETHING SPECIAL (NEW OUTFIT/CAR/TOOL—WE COMPENSATE FOR OUR FEELINGS BY SPENDING—IT IS A “QUICK FIX”---PROV.13:7 “ONE PRETENDS TO BE RICH & HAS NOTHING. ANOTHER PRETENDS TO BE POOR BUT HAS GREAT WEALTH” (EX: PEOPLE IN TN. WHO HAD MONEY BUT CHOSE TO LIVE IN SHABBY HOMES WITH DIRT FLOORS) OUR VALUE HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH WHAT WE OWN—BUT WHO WE ARE IN CHRIST—HE PAID THE RANSOM PRICE FOR OUR FREEDOM (2 COR.8:9) HE BECAME POOR SO YOU MIGHT BECOME RICH---SPIRITUAL RICHES

B.   RESENTMENT—WE MAY WONDER WHY CERTAIN PROBLEM CAME TO US—ENEMY PLANT THOUGHT “YOU DON’T DESERVE THIS PROBLEM—YOU GET DISCONTENT—RESENT OTHERS HAVE WHAT YOU SHOULD HAVE. RESENTMENT CAN HAVE LAYERS (LIKE ONION) THAT BUILD UP OVER TIME.  YOU CAN RESENT PEOPLE OR GOD. WE HONOR GOD WITH CONTENTED ATTITUDE (PAUL SAID HE LEARNED HOW TO DO THAT)

C.   GUILT—SATAN USES THIS TO REMIND US HOW MUCH WE OWE OTHERS & HOW INADEQUATE WE ARE—WE MAY USE CREDIT TO PROVIDE THINGS FOR LOVED ONES—OFTEN HAPPENS IN DIVORCE WHEN ABSENT PARENT COMPENSATES WITH THINGS OR MONEY.  BUT ITS CONVICTION THAT WILL HELP CHANGE OUR ATTITUDES & HABITS.

D.   FEAR—FEAR IS LIKE A JAILOR. IT CREATES PANIC & PARALIZES US.  GOD WANTS US TO FEAR ONLY HIM. FEAR OF LORD IS BEG. OF WISDOM & KNOWLEDGE OF HOLY ONE IS UNDERSTANDING (PROV.9:10) WE CAN OVERCOME THE SCHEMES OF DEVIL BY LEARNING TO TRUST GOD IN EVERY AREA OF LIFE.

III.           A BETTER SPIRITUAL HARVEST

TO GET BETTER SPIRITUAL HARVEST OUT OF OUR LIVES WE MAY HAVE TO SOW BETTER SEED—THAT MIGHT REQUIRE REPENTANCE—SPIRITUAL CONVICTION TO CHANGE BEHAVIOR

A.   ALLOW GOD TO BE YOUR FINANCIAL PLANNER—LOOK AT ISA. 26:3 “HE WILL KEEP HIM IN PERFECT PEACE WHOSE MIND IS STEDFAST BECAUSE HE TRUSTS IN YOU”  (PRAY OVER FINANCIAL DECISIONS—SEEK GODS WISDOM & DIRECTION)  1 JN 2:15-17---IF YOU HAVE USED MONEY FOOLISHLY THEN CONFESS IT & START FRESH.  THERE IS NO NEED TO LIVE IN FEAR.

B.   TAKE “BUYING THOUGHTS “ CAPTIVE---“IS THIS PURCHASE THE BEST FOR ME OR FAMILY?  IS THIS THE RIGHT TIME?  IS THIS WISE?  IS THERE A BETTER WAY TO USE THE MONEY?   2 COR. 10:4,5 “THE WEAPONS WE HAVE ARE NOT WEAPONS OF THE WORLD—THEY ARE ABLE TO DEMOLISH STRONGHOLDS—TAKE CAPTIVE EVERY THOUGHT TO MAKE IT OBEDIENT TO CHRIST”---SO WE GET INTO THE WORD---MEDITATE & APPLY THOSE PASSAGES THAT GIVE INSIGHT/WISDOM. JESUS RESPONDED TO SATAN’S ATTACKS WITH SCRIPTURE

C.   THINK AHEAD BEFORE YOU BUY—WILL YOU REGRET THIS PURCHASE IN FEW MONTHS? ALL OF US HAVE BOUGHT THINGS & WISHED WE HAD MONEY BACK.  ONE MAN SAID “I HAVE THE UNEASY FEELING WE ARE PUTTING THINGS OUT IN GARAGE SALE THAT STILL ARE NOT PAID OFF ON CREDIT CARD!”  SO AS PHIL. 4:6,7 SAYS—DON’T BE ANXIOUS, PRESENT REQUESTS TO GOD & PEACE OF GOD WIL GUARD YOUR HEART/MIND---FINANCIAL ANXIETY CAN BE LAID AT FEET OF JESUS. FOCUS ON POSITIVE BENEFIT OF BEING OUT OF DEBT & WORK TOWARD THAT GOAL. DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP. THESE ARE INTERNAL CONFLICTS/SPIRITUAL BATTLES THAT CAN BE GIVEN TO LORD. SO PRAY & GIVE HIM TIME TO WORK---REMEMBER RENEWING YOUR SPIRIT CAN LIFE YOUR SPIRITS!  OPEN YOUR HEART TO WORSHIP—FOREVER GOD IS FAITHFUL—FOREVER GOD IS STRONG—FOREVER GOD IS WITH US—FOREVER!   

CONCLUSION:  (EX: DANNY THOMAS LESSON OF FAITH)

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