Jesus, Money and Stuff

A Life of Stewardship in Light of Eternity

“A disciple learns to remain generous by decisions to engage in hospitality, settle into a level of living, choose simplicity and refrain from debt.”

Masterworks’ mission is to help our clients connect their constituents to what God is doing in the world through the giving of their time, talent and treasure. We exist to further God’s Kingdom by amplifying generosity.

My pastor, Chris Manginelli, nailed this topic recently. Do you want to be generous?  Here’s how . . .

  • Engage in Hospitality — This is truly a lost art today. Paul encouraged the church to “practice hospitality” (Romans 12:13). Ever notice the word “hospital” in hospitality? I’ll never forget the kindness of my college chaplains, Bob and Ellen Stamps as they opened their home every Friday night to students like me — all hungry for a warm meal and caring hugs. I was 2,000 miles away from home and yearned for the warmth emanating from theirs. How generous they were to share as they did!
  • Settle into a Level of Living — So, when is enough, enough? And when will we decide to honor Jesus with ALL of our money and possessions? John Wesley said it well, “Gain all you can, save all you can, in order to give all you can.”
  • Live Simply — Ever notice how complicated life gets as we add more stuff? My wife and I decided to buy a backyard spa for our home some years back. What was a want had become a need. While lounging in a pool of hot water on a cold Seattle night was nice at first, that spa became such a drain in both time AND money. So much money for so much trouble! What else could we have done with these funds?
  • Refrain from Debt — Yikes!  Look at this . . .
    The average American consumer owes $15K on auto debt, $173K on mortgage, $26K on student loans, $48K home equity debt and $6K on credit cards (Consumer Credit Score Climate Report).

Bottom line?  As we free ourselves from debt, we are free to be even more generous.

Some questions to ponder:

  • How, in my present circumstances with finances and possessions, can I engage in hospitality?
  • Where do I need to simplify my financial behaviors in order to become more generous?
  • What one matter is God bringing into clear focus for prayer and growth?

Doug Clark is a Senior VP in Client Services at Masterworks. He and his wife, Sandie, volunteer at Safe Place, a shelter that receives children entering the foster system.