In recent years, carpe diem—“seize the day”—has become a motto for living each day to the fullest. That’s actually a biblical concept. We only have a limited time on earth to fulfill God’s purpose for our lives. We must seize every opportunity God gives us “as long as it is still called ‘Today’” (Hebrews 3:13).
This concept is called “stewardship.” It refers to the way we manage the life God has given you and me. We often think of God’s gifts in three areas: our time, our talent, and our treasure. Each is ours to manage every day of our lives.
Time: Investing the Minutes of Life in the Priorities of God
You’ve heard it said, “Life is like a coin. You can spend it however you want, but you only can spend it once.” Psalm 90 (the oldest psalm) tells us that we have a limited time on earth to accomplish God’s plan for our lives. We know time has to be handled carefully, but search the Internet for “time management,” and you’ll find 500 million sites full of tips and techniques to better manage your life. With so many options, where do you start?. . . God’s Word. Scripture shows us how we should wisely invest our most valuable asset, the minutes we spend on earth.
So teach us to number our days,
That we may present to You a heart of wisdom.
Talent: Putting Your Skills to Work in the Family of God
When you received Christ, you gained the right to be called a child of God. And with that position came the responsibility of pitching in to help meet the family’s needs. God has equipped you by His Spirit to minister in a way as unique as your fingerprints. In God’s family, everyone is considered “gifted.” Regardless of your personality, your IQ, or how high or low you rank on the social strata, you have spiritual gifts. And the body of Christ needs you—just as God designed.
Treasure: The Joy of Partnering with God
The whole subject of giving money can be confusing. We ask ourselves bottom-line questions. How much should I give? To what cause should I contribute? What’s the proper attitude I should have toward giving? The Bible explores our giving in great and varied detail, demonstrating how important our acts of financial stewardship are to God. By giving back a portion of what we have received from Him, we’re acknowledging His ownership of it. We’re acting as channels through which He supplies others’ needs. We’re proving our faithfulness in large and small matters.
Most of all, God wants us to give to Him because this act of worship is like a sweet, fragrant aroma to Him. When our generosity goes deep, the sacrifice delights Him (see Mark 12:41–44). When we give enthusiastically to Him, we put our money where our hearts are.
Do you want your life to count? Do you want to fulfill the purpose for which you were born? Begin here: seize the day . . . and entrust yourself to God. As the first and highest act of godly stewardship, invite Him to direct your days and the ways you spend your time, your talent, and your treasure.
An important aspect of being a godly steward of your treasure is managing how your money is spent, invested, and passed on to the next generation. No matter your age or income, be wise in how you manage what God has given you. Many people are unaware that you can significantly reduce tax obligations in your estate by designating a portion of your inheritance to a ministry you believe in and care about. Insight for Living is able to help you with the details—for your good and for God’s glory. For more information, visit www.insight.org/estateplanning, or you may send us an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions you might have.