On Stewardship and the Orthodox Life - Part 71: Be Still And Know That I Am God
“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear though the earth should change…” (Psalm 46:1-2 RSV)
God has promised many blessings for His people. For most of us, that blessing is abundance. Abundance is defined as “plentifulness of the good things of life; prosperity.” The world’s majority, many of whom suffer at the hands of war, famine and disease, envy the abundance we have in our country.
On the other hand, many who are blessed with abundance often live like they are in a condition of scarcity: “the state of being in short supply.” Recently it was reported about a group of professional athletes arriving for an out-of-town game. As they left the team bus, each was handed an envelope of money. This money was for meals and incidental expenses. It was lunch money for millionaires – millionaires living like they were in a condition of scarcity: “the state of being in short supply.”
What many of us have in “short supply,” however, is trust in God’s ongoing goodness. Earlier this year, due to overseas economic problems, the stock markets in the U.S. took a large loss. Those who had their money tied up in stocks found a great deal of the value of those stocks gone. What were they to do? Were they on the brink of financial disaster? Think further of the hundreds of thousands of refugees pouring out of the Middle East to escape war and the poverty that often accompanies war. I would imagine that many of those who were panicking over the stock market losses did not do as the Psalmist suggests: “…we will not fear though the earth should change.” What of those who had only what they could carry on their backs and were on the brink of losing even that? Many who were interviewed for media reports on the refugee crisis said that their faith in God would see them through – not matter what: “we will not fear though the earth should change.”
The story is told of a foster parent who took in two little children. Both had been starved and ill-treated in their former lives. The older lived with the foster family for six months. When the younger child arrived, she was scared that she would never have enough to eat. The foster parent had hidden food all over the house so that the older child could take the younger one around to prove there was always food to eat.
Good stewards know that God will provide “…though the earth should change…” Our task is to see the abundance that is around us, acknowledge the God who provides it, and share that abundance with others without “fear though the earth should change…”
This weekly series of brief thoughts on stewardship and Orthodox life is brought to you by your Diocesan Stewardship Commission.
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