Being a good steward is important

hurricane debrisHelping a sister clean up after a hurricane is an example of being a good steward.

Most of the time we hear someone speak of being a good steward, we automatically think about tithing to the church. That is certainly the biblical interpretation and the topic of many sermons.

But it is actually much larger than that. The dictionary defines a steward as a person in charge or responsible for the careful use of money, time, talents or other resources, especially with respect to the principles or needs of a community or group. That covers a lot of territory.

We already know that major components in our quest for a great life is to feel like we’re making a difference, like our lives matter and we’re helping create a better world for future generations.

How we manage our money, time, talents and other resources are indications of how we might be faring in our journey.

What does it say about a retired person who has plenty of time on her hands but does nothing for her community? She doesn’t share her wisdom through writing books and blogs or broadcasting podcasts. 

She doesn’t volunteer with any of the non-profit groups who always need a helping hand. She doesn’t support the local theater groups with attendance, volunteering or financial contributions.

Would she be considered a good steward of her time or money? Probably not.

What about someone who is an accomplished musician or artist but refuses to allow anyone else to hear his beautiful music or see his amazing paintings? Is that being a good steward of his talents? Not really.

Now, you may think, there could be perfectly legitimate reasons for these people to be hoarding their time, money or talents. 

Maybe they have health issues that prohibit them. Maybe they have mental blocks that get in their way. Maybe their lifestyles just don't allow it.

These situations could be true but are likely exceptions rather than the rule. We’re referring to people who have no valid reasons for not wisely managing their money, time, talents and resources.

Recycling is an important activity to manage the Earth's resources.

Examples of being a good steward

  • Keep your home, yard and automobile clean; pick up trash 
  • Recycle fervently, compost food and yard scraps where possible
  • Help friends and loved ones in need
  • Contribute time and/or money to organizations that help others
  • Attend and participate in community events – concerts, plays, sports, public hearings
  • Pay bills on time; go paperless when possible
  • Pay attention to how your money is used; be frugal when needed and generous when appropriate
  • Share yourself, your experiences, your wisdom with others
  • Perform good deeds; smile at strangers
  • Surround yourself with positive people who are also good stewards
  • Use your brain power to solve the world’s problems
  • Elect local and national officials who care about and serve their constituencies

Examples of being a lousy steward

  • Litter, throw trash out of car windows
  • Recline on the couch all day watching non-stop television
  • Buy pornography, subscribe to porn sites on the internet
  • Ignore housework for months on end, allowing critter infestations
  • Spout insults to neighbors
  • Spread lies and gossip 
  • Hang out with negative riffraff who constantly complain
  • Deliberately harm people or pets
  • Start forest fires for kicks
  • Elect only dirty, rotten, divisive scoundrels who are out for their own good

We only have one life to live. And we are the ones in charge of how that life is used. We can choose to be good stewards or not to be.

Which are you?

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