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Stewards of God's Creation

"Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others. Let the same mind be in you that was in Christ Jesus."

(Philippians 2:4-5)

The people in Philippi are struggling because Paul has been imprisoned for his beliefs. Paul seeks to encourage and to reassure them that his joy and confidence are undiminished, even under his present circumstances. Paul wants the people to stand fast in their faith by standing together and looking after one another. It is easy for us to focus on ourselves when we feel defeated or inferior to others. It is our humanness that compels us to compare our life with other lives. Paul reminds us that we will find blessings and joy for ourselves by reaching out to others.

Activity

The springtime of the year brings many opportunities to see new life in God's creation. It also reminds us of our responsibility to care for the environment and all of God's creation. Many people in our church families are unable to care for their yards during the spring and summer.

Contact your church office and find those who may be physically unable to care for their garden, trees, or yards. Extend beyond the homebound and the elderly. Remember the single parent, the recently widowed, the person with allergies, the young person with limited gardening ability.

Offer to have your family regularly help people with their outdoor work.

By being a steward of God's creation, you will bring joy to others as they enjoy gazing into their backyard. You can alleviate a burden that is piled on an already overwhelmed single parent. You will sense a closer relationship with people in your church family. You will be drawn closer together as a family by helping others. You will be closer to God by sharing your talent with someone in different circumstances.

Prayer

Lord, help me to see the needs of others. Help me to be aware of the joy that I can share by stepping out in faith to help others. In Jesus' name, I pray. Amen

Discussion Questions

  • What are some ways that you compare yourself to others? How can you overcome making these comparisons?
  • Were people surprised by your offer to be a steward of their yards?
  • In what ways did helping others bring a blessing to your own personal life?

Ruth M. Blum is an ordained United Methodist Deacon who serves as Associate Pastor of Children and Families at Dove of the Desert United Methodist Church in Glendale, Arizona.

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