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“Just as each one of you has received a special gift [a spiritual talent, an ability graciously given by God], employ it in serving one another as [is appropriate for] good stewards of God’s multi-faceted grace [faithfully using the diverse, varied gifts and abilities granted to Christians by God’s unmerited favor].” 1 Peter 4:10 (AMP)


We all have something that was given to us only by God. No one is exempt from that - each of us has been blessed with a gift and the purpose of that gift is to bring God glory. Every one of us has been given talents, time, and treasure so what have we done with these and what will we do with them since we are all stewards of God. The word “steward” is rooted in the Greek word “oikonomos,” which means “the manager of a household”.

So often in the body of Christ if we are not given the ‘obvious’ gift such as the ability to sing or preach we step back into the shadows believing that the gifts we have are insignificant, they hold no real value in the house of God. The danger of this is that we are allowing our wrong thoughts to cause us to fail in our job as stewards of God. We need to understand that our lives are not our own. Our life is on loan from God, regardless if you acknowledge this or not. God calls you to steward everything about our lives for his glory and the good of others. Given the word for Alive City Church this year is ‘Growth and Expansion’, we have to stretch ourselves to step into the fullness of our roles as stewards of God. Stop making excuses, stop lurking in the back - step forward and take action because if you are a manager of what ultimately belongs to God, you will definitely have to give an account back to God, our boss.

In a work setting, we all want to impress the boss and would bend over backwards, working late to go above and beyond to show the leadership that we are good stewards over what we have. Yet, in the Kingdom many of us give less to God. We fail to realise that the promotion that we seek comes from God ( Psalm 75:6-7). This year, we need to stop dissociating the gifts we have been given and its relevance to the church. Reflecting on the gifts you use in the workplace, at home and amongst friends and family - what do people know you for? What do they always come to you to help with? Now consider if the church benefits from these gifts, do they know you have them? We all want to hear those words when we enter heaven, “well done, good and faithful servant”.

A good steward is committed to selfless service, they embrace innovation and change, they are team players, they believe in communication and being transparent and they always acknowledge and thank the master they serve. In 2022, stretch yourself in the area of stewardship, knowing that you have done everything you possibly can to nurture what God has given you.

Further Study: Matthew 25:14-30, Titus 1:7, Colossians 3:23, 1 Corinthians 4:2, 2 Corinthians 9:6-7, 2 Timothy 1:14

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“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God”. Romans 8:18-19 (NIV)


Paul here writes ‘For I consider’ i.e., I know that your perspective when going through hardship matters. How you consider the tough seasons will configure or shape how you come out of the other side. We know from this scripture that there is a present suffering and future glory. So if there is a future glory, then there must also be a present glory - despite the present suffering. Later on in Romans 8:28 Paul writes ‘And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose’.

So while we are not exempt from hardship, we can be assured that even in those hard times God has a plan for us and the end result will ultimately work out to favour us. How are we to then consider and navigate the challenges life will undoubtedly throw at us? James, in chapter 1 in verses 2-4, puts it like this; “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything”.

Each one's plight will look different. You might be suffering through addiction, struggling with low self esteem or perhaps mourning the death of a loved one. You may be battling with anxiety - your mental, physical or spiritual health may be at jeopardy; whatever it is, know that there is hope. We serve a God who is mighty to save. Nothing is too hard for God. Whatever you are going through today is not worthy to be compared with future glory that we will attain in Christ.

Throughout this fast let us reconsider our suffering with the perspective that we serve a powerful God, the God of the whole earth (Isaiah 54:5). Let us not allow the pain of what we go rob us of the hope we have in Jesus and the promises we have made plain to us in God’s Word. You are an overcomer. You will overcome your suffering and all things will work out for your good.

Further Study: Romans 5:3-5, Hebrews 4:15, 1 Peter 5:10, Romans 8:37-38

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Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.” 2 Corinthians 9:6 (NIV)


Giving is an area which has become so sensitive in the Body of Christ, that preachers and teachers steer away from it. Ironically, talking about receiving blessings and all the things God can do for you as Jehovah Jireh is always trending. Yet giving is a big part of our Christian faith. God gave His only son so that those on the receiving end might get something. God sowed a seed, He sowed His only Son, so that we might have eternal life (if we decide to believe). God gives to us every single day; He provides our daily bread and when we go knocking, He opens the doors to us. We expect God to give but we don’t like giving to God in exchange. We expect God to stretch into His storeroom of the miraculous and give to us every time we ask, but we fail to give to Him consistently. Giving financially is a faith step, showing God that we can give back to Him because we are only stewards of our finances. Its’ a two-way stretch.

We need to go beyond the attitude of just receiving from God and the church and start to invest and sow into the church. An example I want to use is Hannah. Hannah was a barren woman but yearned to give her husband children. One day, she decided to pray and made a promise to God that if he gave her a son – just one son – she would give him back. She knew her desires would only be fulfilled by God. Yet she was audacious enough in her faith to give her only, even if it meant she wouldn’t have anymore. She stretched her faith to the point that she was willing to sacrifice all that God would give her, because she understood that God could do anything and provide everything.

This year we need to go beyond giving our change and give to God our all. As Hannah made a commitment to God, so should we. God is worthy of it. If you don’t tithe, stretch yourself this year and commit to giving 10 percent, and watch what God does with your 90%. If you don’t even give an offering, commit to giving every week and see how God transforms you into a generous person who can bless others. Hannah gave her only son, after years of longing for that one child. In return God blessed her with 3 sons and 2 additional daughters. She understood that she needed to stretch herself in giving to God. Now it's your turn. Don’t just reach out to receive from God, stretch yourself and give back to God in 2022.

Further Study: 1 Samuel 1; 1 Samuel 2:1-10, 1 Samuel 2:21, Genesis 4: 1-7, Malachi 3:6-10

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