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Stewardship and Giving Edition Blog

February 28, 2022 The Stewardship and Giving Edition Blog

The idea for Hello Good Neighbor began with a simple conversation with a new neighbor. Over time it evolved and has developed a larger meaning in my life. Up ’till now, I have been exploring the concept of “all things neighborly” within the context of relationships through a podcast titled “Hello Good Neighbor”.

The concept of being a good neighbor encompasses so much more in my life and I imagine it does for you too. The concept of a neighbor does not only mean those who live next door or down the street, it is more universal. And I believe one aspect of being a neighbor is evident in our giving. How we approach life and view our role as stewards of what we have been given, what we have earned in a sense, and what we have discarded in life. Our outlook on giving and awareness of our ability to provide for ourselves, others and the future is important. Do you agree? 

This brings me to the title and focus of this blog, the Stewardship and Giving Edition. While we will explore relationships, lifestyle choices, and the places we call home, how do we interact with the concept of giving to the neighborhood? How do our actions reflect a life of stewardship? I have a desire to share about these two acts of service and what they mean to us. What they mean to others and our creator.

When you think about what it means to be a steward and the act of giving, what comes to mind?

Do you see yourself as a giver? What have you accumulated or been given that places you in a position of authority? What possessions or even relationships are you a steward for? As we explore relationships in the Hello Good Neighbor podcast, we have identified that our interactions with those in our care, those around us, and for those we are about to meet, these relationships are to be held with respect and are to be honored as valuable. What do you value at this point in your life? Are you willing to give it away?

I’ll admit, in my own humanity sometimes I find that it’s not good to be right. You may want to read that again. There are times when I know that I am correct about a given subject (as much as my facts line up), but that does not mean that my logic and correctness are appropriate for the subject at hand. Surely I alone cannot protect all of the items I hold dear such as family, personal belongings, trees and plants, and animals. Money. I cannot protect them all let alone every child or family in need around the world. I’m likely right in these statements, but is it good to be correct, and therefore not act at all? 

Therein lies the opportunity to learn the ways of stewardship and giving. The Bible says to give with a cheerful heart (paraphrased), and I agree. I am only able to do so much and the intent with which I do such things as giving and caretaking are what can affect those around me in a greater or lesser way.

My desire is to bring honor and glory to the one who created me and as the Bible states, He owns the cattle on a thousand hills. I give because I have received. I give because it is wholly appropriate to do so. I give out of necessity. Let that sink in.

My desire is to be a vessel that is in use, where rivers of giving come and go. Some describe how in order to properly give, we must also be able to receive. I agree with this statement, though my upbringing initially led me towards an ethic of hard work and the ability to earn what you receive. We will learn here about true giving and receiving.

As we explore this edition of what it means to be a Good Neighbor, let us consider the following:

1) Let’s explore the various attributes of Stewardship and Giving

2) Where do I start? Are you receptive to the art of giving?

3) How do I know what level of contribution is right? How may I be intentional with Stewardship and Giving?

4) What if I am in need, how am I to serve?

5) Do I set expectations for the results of service?

6) My desire is to give cheerfully, and so shall I live.

7) So much more will be explored as we seek out what it means to be an active participant in a stewardship role. (hint: you already are a participant)

I hope you will join the neighborhood as we explore the above concepts in this edition of the Hello Good Neighbor neighborhood. Until next time, consider your current views on giving and stewardship. How did you express these traits as a child, teenager, or adult? Are you open to exploring and acting upon the results during our journey? I sure hope you will join us in the neighborhood.

Your Good Neighbor, Tony Slabaugh