Summary: Stewardship is the missing piece to successful living. Adapted from a John C. Maxwell sermon.
Stewardship: The Missing Piece to Successful Living
"The Benefits of Lifestyle Stewardship" 1 of 4
(Originally preached by Dr. John C. Maxwell)
January 5, 2002 FBC, Chester, IL Mike Fogerson, Speaker
Draw your attention to the puzzle on the front of your sermon notes.
A Stewardship is the missing piece to successful living.
a I’ll be talking the whole month on how stewardship is the key to spiritual growth/development.
b Been a big month in the life our church for the last two years. (Look forward to January)
B Overview of the next four weeks....
a Benefits: Biblical Model of stewardship.
b Balance: Poverty or Prosperity-Which is biblically correct?
(Some people say if you serve God you’ll have everything/nothing. Which is right?)
c Responsibility: If God Owns It All What Am I Doing With It?
d Partners: 1 + 1 = One
C Today’s notes...
(3 pages of notes for this sermon...mostly scripture. Don’t panic.)
a Biblical model of lifestyle stewardship.
b Luke 6
*Jesus is doing some marvelous teaching about living a lifestyle of giving.
*READ LUKE 6:27-38 FROM NIV (DON’T PRINT IN SERMON GUIDE)
II Four Observations
(1.) This behavior is to be our lifestyle. (Does Jesus really expect us to live this way? YES!)
(2.) This behavior sets us apart from the world. (vs. 32-34)
Three different times Jesus says if we don’t live this high road of giving, sharing, loving there is nothing that seperates us from the sinners/world.
(3.) This behavior is modeled by our heavenly Father. (v.6.)
(4.) This behavior will reap many benefits. (vs. 35, 37-38)
Reward will be great (35)
If we don’t judge, we won’t be judged. (Condemned, forgive)
(We pretty much determine our own sentence from God. Our attitude towards others determines our attitude toward us.)
E Remember in school when the teacher called for someone to answer a question and if you knew the answer you raised your hand in the air and waved it!!!
a You knew the answer and you wanted to tell everybody else that you knew the answer.
b Remember what it was like when the teacher asked a question and you had no idea what the answer was. (Dear God, please don’t let her call on me!)
F I’m excited about this month, because I really know biblically how things can turn around for you financially, spiritually, your life. (Hang with me over the next month and I promise you it can beautifully, incredibly bless your life.)
a God’s Word teaches us specifically how to live a successful life and the missing piece in many Christians life is this piece of STEWARDSHIP. Stewardship= Managing the resources that God has given you and me.
*I’ll try my best in next four weeks to teach you how to manage what God has given you. (If you manage it correctly, you receive more. Incorrectly, you receive less.)
b Not an accident why some people are blessed and others aren’t blessed.
(Talk about being river instead of reservoir, channel of blessing..if we understand the biblical principles of stewardship.)
II How Do We Develop A Lifestyle of Giving?
1 Totally give yourself to God.
A True stewardship doesn’t begin when I give in the offering plate on Sunday. (It begins when we give ourselves totally over to God.)
*In 2 Corinthians 8:3-5 Paul talks about how the Church in Macedonia took an offering...  For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own,  they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the saints.  And they did not do as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then to us in keeping with God’s will.
*How could they give more than they were able to give? Because they first gave themselves to the LORD. (Lordship!!)
*The first thing you give God isn’t your money, Sunday, what you watch, listen to....the first thing you give is yourself. Then everything else comes.
*Most Christians NEVER learn this principle (I’ve seen them lose blessings financially, spiritually, emotionally because they never given everything over to God first.)
a (Fries Story)
He doesn’t understand I’m the source of his fries.
I can take them away or bury him in fries.
I don’t need his fries. (I can go get my own.)
WHAT I WANTED/NEEDED: He willingness to share what I’ve given him back with me.
b The height of ingratitude is when God gives us something and we build a fence around it and not want to share/give back. (Possessive with it.)
*What God gave us is ours!!
*First thing we’ll learn is that we own nothing!!!
*If I die today I’m taking nothing me.
*Stewardship starts when we give Him the only thing we can..ourselves.