Are You a Good Manager?

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Admit it. Nobody likes a bad manager.

When things are poorly managed, everybody suffers. Things become disorganized. People get confused. Information gets lost. Productivity wanes. All in all, poor management can lead to mass chaos.

Good managers place priority in taking good care of the people or tasks assigned to them. They model service. They are selfless. They set a standard of excellence for others to follow.

In reality, we’re all managers. God has entrusted to our care numerous things of which He expects us to be good stewards. A literal translation of the word steward is manager. Whether it’s money, time, relationships, talents, or even God’s green earth, we’re called to be responsible managers.

So how are you managing the things God has placed in your care?

Keep these things in mind when it comes to managing your God-given responsibilities:

  1. God is in charge. Psalm 24:1 (NIV) reminds us, “The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it.” And in the Book of James we learn, “Every generous act and every perfect gift is from above” (1:17, HCSB). As humans who are often on mission for fame, possessions, and power, we must humble ourselves daily, acknowledging God as our Creator and Sustainer. As we trust in His provision, God will give us all we need.
  2. Honesty is the best policy. Manipulation and deceit are Satan’s tactics when trying to lure us off the path of being good managers. Don’t let Satan win. We’re reminded in 1 Corinthians 4:2 (ESV), “Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found trustworthy.” Always be honest and trustworthy.
  3. We need each other. When we each use our God-given gifts, everyone benefits. We learn in 1 Corinthians 12:6-7 (MSG), “Each person is given something to do that shows who God is: Everyone gets in on it, everyone benefits. All kinds of things are handed out by the Spirit, and to all kinds of people! The variety is wonderful.” As we strive to be good managers, we must work together and appreciate the different abilities, gifts, and skills that each person brings to the mix.

If you allow it, the ability to be a good manager is attainable. It won’t always be easy. It won’t always be fun. But in the end, our responsibility to God remains. Choose to be a good manager. As you make stewardship a priority, you’ll glorify God and set a great standard for those around you to go and do the same.

Want to help kids understand how to be good managers? Discover how Meet Penny Nickels can be a simple and effective tool to start the conversation early! Learn more at pennynickelsbooks.com

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When Family Hurts You

 

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“The strength of a family, like the strength of an army, is in its loyalty to each other.” – Mario Puzo

Ever felt hurt or betrayed by family? Or maybe someone you love or held in high esteem suddenly became untrustworthy or strangely deceitful in behavior? 

At some point, we all experience it. Disappointment in family choices and behaviors can cut deep to the heart like nothing else. When you feel like you truly know someone–his or her heart or intentions–and then witness disloyal or secretive behaviors from them, it can leave you feeling abandoned, confused, and ultimately bitter. In the end, it’s the legacy of family who’ve gone before us that gets tarnished when one or more remaining family members are disloyal.

As I’ve wrestled with this topic in my own life recently, I was reminded of God’s picture of family loyalty and good stewardship throughout His Word. The Bible is clear that loyalty to God demands that we be loyal to others. Here are just a few Scripture passages on loyalty and responsibility:

“Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you” (Exodus 20:12).

“He who brings trouble on his family will inherit only wind, and the fool will be servant to the wise” (Proverbs 11:29).

“A greedy man brings trouble to his family, but he who hates bribes will live” (Proverbs 15:27).

“Watch out and be on guard against all greed because one’s life is not in the abundance of his possessions” (Luke 12:15).

“And even more will be expected of the one who has been entrusted with more” (Luke 12:48).

“It is expected of managers that each one of them be found faithful” (1 Corinthians 4:2).

“If people say, ‘I love God,’ but hate their brothers or sisters, they are liars. Those who do not love their brothers and sisters, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have never seen” (1 John 4:20).

It’s obvious that God desires for us to be loyal. It’s also obvious that He desires us to be good stewards of what we’ve been entrusted. When family is involved, these principles should take great priority over any of our (intentional or innocent) selfish desires. As decent, moral human character seems to be a lost concept in our world today, we must fight all the harder at staying true to who our Creator designed us to be.

Lord, may I never be disloyal to family, but rather an example of godly, upright character and selfless love. May I always put the feelings and needs of others before myself. When entrusted with much, may I honor You in my management and leadership. And ultimately, God, may you receive the glory for it all!