"Give it ALL to Christ."
That sounds scary, and I'm sure most of you are thinking, "Is he talking about my money? Am I to give it all away?" But, just so you will continue to read on, know that this is not what I am talking about here. I am talking about our fear. I am talking about our work. I am talking about all the things that occupy our minds, hearts and desires each and every day.
We need to go through life giving it all to Christ. What we should not do is separate our money from the rest of our lives—separate our giving, our debt or our financial stability. We are not to separate or compartmentalize these things that are related to our money.
Over the years, thousands have had the opportunity to be a part of my town hall meetings in cities around the country. One thing I always make note of when I speak is that, if you are a believer in Jesus Christ, you may be a person who prays for everything, just as so many of us do. Prayer is a wonderful gift and something we should do throughout each day. But we seem to pass over our financial situation. We very seldom pray for whom we can trust to help us with our finances. We don't pray about how or where we might give our money. We don't pray regarding where we might spend it. We don't pray about the struggles, trials and turbulence that lie ahead because of a lack of it. We always desire to take total control over this area of our lives, and we very seldom give it all to Christ.
We are to be good stewards of the gospel of Jesus Christ. I love Paul, as I am sure he was in a very uncomfortable position—likely in a Roman prison—when he wrote the book of Colossians. In chapter 1, starting in verse 24, he says this: "I now rejoice in my suffering for you and fill up in my flesh what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ, for the sake of His body, which is the church, of which I became a minister according to the stewardship from God which was given to me for you, to fulfill the word of God..."
We may be struggling, and we may have situations in our financial life that we just can't seem to give over to Christ. But we, too, if we know the Lord, are very similar to Paul. Although we may struggle and suffer and have trials and heartaches, we first and foremost are stewards as ministers of God. I am sure many of you have never thought of yourself as a minister of God or a steward of the gospel. But Paul held on to that glorious job he was given to get him through some very difficult times. We often, instead of holding on to our work for the sake of God, seem to let that part of it go when it comes to our suffering from a financial perspective. God not only wants us to give it over to Him—in fact, He expects us to do so—and He wants us to expect that He will take care of our struggles. We should be committed to God in all things—not in all things except our finances—but in all things.
If you are struggling through some difficult financial heartaches, take a moment and think about whether you truly gave them over to Christ and then stepped away. Be sure you are not continuing to meddle in what He is doing or continuing to check on Him to "make sure" that it is going the way you would like it to go.
Have you truly given it over to Him and stepped away from it? We must give all things to Christ. Our fear of losing money or of the lack of money will change as our perspective changes.
Dan Celia is president and CEO of Financial Issues Stewardship Ministries, Inc., and host of the nationally syndicated radio and television program "Financial Issues," heard daily on more than 650 stations across the country and reaching millions of households on several TV networks. Visit www.financialissues.org.