Our Lord Jesus Christ tells us that the Kingdom of Heaven is like a man went on a journey and called his servants together and entrusted to them his property (Mt. 25.14). This is important because the foundation of this passage is that God has entrusted his earth, and all that is contained therein, to us. The foundation of understanding Stewardship as a Way of Life is to understand that the Lord our God trusts us to do the right thing with our time, our talents, and our treasure.
The second thing we should notice about this passage is that he entrusts us with as much as we can handle (Mt. 25.15). The Lord is not out to get us. He is wants us to succeed. We are not set up by God for failure. Another foundational aspect of Stewardship as a Way of Life is a loving God who wishes us to succeed.
In this story from Matthew 25, the first two stewards took what the man had given them for success, and made more (Mt. 25.16-17). This is the ideal. This is what God wants us to do. He gives us time to pray and read the Bible so that we get to know him better and depend upon him. He gives us talents, or charisms, gifts that are part of us (some paint, some write, some sing, some fix things, etc.), which we should use in service to the Church to carry out the Lord’s mission. He gives us treasure, or land, money, and investments, that we are to enjoy, but also give for support of the Lord’s mission. He gives us the Mass and Confession, so that we can connect with him every week and be freed from our sins once per month. All of these are His gifts to us. The proper response is to use them, at least in part, for his glory.
Every servant who used their talents for him prospered. They were not only successful, but were given more success and more authority over his affairs. The Lord wants us to succeed in life. He wants us to thrive. The first two servants in this passage understand this and have a healthy relationship (Mt. 25.20-23; 29).
It is the third servant who was only given one talent in accordance with his ability that doesn’t understand. He had a view of the man as one who was stingy and took things that weren’t his. He saw the man as stingy, because he, the servant, was. He hid the talent (Mt. 25.19). When the man returned, this servant even said out loud what he felt: the man was stingy and was using him to get more, so the servant decided he wasn’t going to be used. The whole scene is an outrage. The man did not set his servant up to fail. On the contrary, he set him up for success. It was the servant’s own selfishness that skewed his view (Mt. 25.24-28).
We at Christ the King are servants who have been given much and we know we serve a loving and generous God who wishes that we succeed. August 2020 is Stewardship Month. Our theme is “Stewardship: Meaningful Use of His Gifts”. In order for us to evaluate our use of the time, talents, and treasure, we have set up a program that will walk us through thoughtful and prayerful consideration of how we can be better stewards. We know we are stewards who were set up for success and faithfulness by a loving God. We want to think of our life and how we might be able to be even more faithful with the gifts he has given us. We know he trusts us, so we approach this month with confidence.
The program is based on the Five Pillars of Stewardship:
- Scripture Reading
- Service in one ministry of the parish
- Mass attendance and Confession
Please take time to listen to these five minutes presentations and renew your commitment to your relationship with Jesus Christ, His mission, and his mission through our parish, Christ the King.
Fr. Mark Kurowski, Dean