Sometimes we talk about stewardship in terms of resources, and sometimes we talk about stewarding relationships. Today, I find myself thinking more about the latter.
I don’t know about you, but to me, it seems the tension in our society is at an all-time high. Regardless of the topic, we are quick to take sides and go on the attack against people with opposing views.
I see in myself the tendency to condemn other’s behavior, with little regard for my own sinful thoughts and attitudes. I’ve been convicted of my own desire to defend rather than understand – to rebuke rather than listen.
In James 4:10 we read, “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” So recently, I have been challenging myself and those I lead to take a position of humility and grace as much as possible.
One friend reminded me of the story of the stoning of Stephen, found in the seventh chapter of Acts. All of Stephen’s opponents had their fists clenched around stones with great anger. Stephen, on the other hand, had his hands open, arms outstretched and his eyes pointed toward Heaven.
My friend asked me, “Are you taking a position more like Stephen – or of those stoning him?”
In this season, I believe my friend’s question is an especially important one. As people of God, we are called to live in a humbled posture where our hands are open, our arms are outstretched, and our eyes remain ever-focused on Jesus.