“But I trusted in thee, O Lord: I said, Thou art my God. My times are in thy hand…” – Psalm 31:14–15
Cancel. That was the advice of the leadership of the church I pastor concerning our worship services today. After thinking about it, checking every forecast we could find, and praying over it, the decision was made to forego our weekly gathering for the safety of the congregation. I was disappointed because I love gathering with my church family and celebrating Christ. I love hearing what God is doing in their lives, and the opportunities they’ve had to share the gospel with people throughout the week. I love hearing their prayer requests and sharing their burdens. To me, not gathering on Sundays is like having a much-anticipated vacation cancelled at the last minute. It was the right decision, but I don’t have to like it!
Another reason I was disappointed was because I have been teaching a series about stewardship. So far we’ve talked about the fact that God owns all things and we own nothing, we are simply managers of God’s assets. Our mission is to use what He provides for His benefit, purpose, and glory. Today I was going to talk about trusting God as the owner of all things and one verse, in particular, seems appropriate today. Psalm 31 was written by David while he was under extreme duress. James Montgomery Boice said it is “a psalm of trust growing out of an individual lament—a magnificent psalm of confidence.”
In expressing his trust in God, David revealed that all the time of his life was in God’s hand. That’s extraordinary! In this statement David confessed that every second, not just of his day, but of his life, was owned by God. God owned the time of David’s youth and David’s maturity. God owned the times of victory and defeat. God owned the times of joy and discouragement. God owned every moment of David’s life, therefore David was to trust God by living each moment for the purpose and glory of God.
How does this apply to us? We have to understand that the principle stated is every bit as relevant to us as it was to David. We don’t own even a portion of the 86,400 seconds provided to us today. Time belongs to God who entrusts precious seconds to us to use as He desires. Today worship services across the nation were cancelled because of the weather and I can’t help but wonder how believers managed their “extra” time. Did they take the opportunity to turn off the alarm clock in order to get a little extra sleep? Did they use the time to relax and catch up on some reading, or did they pursue some hobby they enjoy? Did they use what they would have offered as an expression of gratitude for God’s grace to make an extra payment on a credit card, or buy a pizza, or do a little shopping at the mall? The question is, did they consume the gifts God’s has given on themselves for the purpose of fulfilling their desires, or did they manage these resources for Christ?
The answer to that question reveals much about a person’s heart toward Biblical stewardship. Owners live as owners, while stewards live as managers. Owners use all things for their benefit, while stewards seek to use all things for God’s purpose. Upon examining how you used the time and resources provided to you today, can you say you were a faithful steward? Did you live as though the times of your live are in the hand of God?
“Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.” – 1 Corinthians 4:2