Posted by Jim Murphy on Thursday, April 10, 2014 @ 3:21 PM

What I Have is Not My Own

Matthew 16:24-26

We are God's Plan A for changing the world.

God works in the world through each of us who have put our faith in Jesus Christ. The change we want to see in the world comes only when we allow God to work his plan through us. To fulfill this plan, we have to understand two important things.

1. Everything belongs to God

What we have is not our own. Our possessions, our wealth, our talents, our abilities, our dreams, even our all belongs to God. We think it’s ours but the reality is that it isn’t. It all comes from our Creator the Sustainer of Life. Furthermore, Christ bought us with his blood. When we put our faith in Jesus, we acknowledged that we are not our own but we belong to Jesus. Read and consider the following passages.

Psalm 24:1 – “The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.”

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 – “Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies.”

2. We are Stewards

God has chosen to give us the task of managing the world, the environment, our wealth, our talents, and our own affairs. This makes us what is called “stewards” – a person employed to manage another person’s property. Read and consider the following passages.

Matthew 25:14-30 – (Parable of the Talents/Bags of Gold)

Matthew 16: 24-26 – “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. ... What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?

Therefore, God expects us to manage these things well, to take care of our world, to take care of each other. He asks us to deny ourselves and our selfish desires in order to take care of the needs of others above our own.

Small Group Questions

  1. What does “everything belongs to God” mean? What does “we are stewards” mean?
  2. How does this change the way we view our possessions, our wealth, our talents, our souls?
  3. How do you think God wants us to manage the money we’ve been given? The talents we’ve been given? The earth we’ve been given? The souls we’ve been given?
  4. So, based on the facts that everything belongs to God and we are His stewards, what is God’s plan A for changing the world?

Conversations at Home

First, in what way are you, as parents, modeling stewardship. Do you have a tendency to live life and talk about your posessions, wealth, talents, etc. as if they are your own or as if they are God's? Do you model generosity, compassion, and an others-centric approach to meeting people's needs?

Second, look for opportunities to help your teen see that they do, in fact, have a lot that God has entrusted to them–their talents, their posessions, their gifts and money, etc. Change your language to include phrases that acknowledge that God has provided for your needs and prayers that include requesting God's guidance for the wise use of your resources. Include your teen in discussing ways to give to others or to serve others.

It's best to model this to your teens and to genuinely include in them real demonstrations of stewardship, servanthood, and generosity than it is to try to just talk about it or lecture about it.

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These posts are from the weekly lessons at Wednesday night FUEL. They are designed to share with you an outline of the content of our discussions, the small group questions, and ideas for conversations at home. Feel free to use these for your own conversations or lessons.

Jim Murphy

Jim Murphy, Associate Pastor, NextGen MinistriesAssociate Pastor NextGen Ministries

218-751-3699 ext 14



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