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Counsels on Stewardship

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    Then the Message Will Go With Power

    God's people should practice strict economy in their outlay of means, that they may have something to bring to Him, saying, “Of Thine own have we given Thee.” Thus they are to offer God thanksgiving for the blessings received from Him. Thus, too, they are to lay up for themselves treasure beside the throne of God.CS 300.3

    Worldlings spend upon dress large sums of money that ought to be used to feed and clothe those suffering from hunger and cold. Many for whom Christ gave His life have barely sufficient of the cheapest, most common clothing, while others spend thousands of dollars in the efforts to satisfy the never-ending demands of fashion.CS 301.1

    The Lord has charged His people to come out from the world, and be separate. Gay or expensive clothing is not becoming to those who believe that we are living in the last days of probation. “I will therefore,” the apostle Paul writes, “that men pray everywhere, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting. In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; but (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.”CS 301.2

    Even among those who profess to be children of God, there are those who spend more than is necessary upon dress. We should dress neatly and tastefully, but, my sisters, when you are buying and making your own and your children's clothing, think of the work in the Lord's vineyard that is still waiting to be done. It is right to buy good material, and have it carefully made. This is economy. But rich trimmings are not needed, and to indulge in them is to spend for self-gratification money that should be put into God's cause.CS 301.3

    It is not your dress that makes you of value in the Lord's sight. It is the inward adorning, the graces of the Spirit, the kind word, the thoughtful consideration for others, that God values. Do without the unnecessary trimmings, and lay aside for the advancement of the cause of God the means thus saved. Learn the lesson of self-denial, and teach it to your children. All that can be saved by self-denial is needed now in the work to be done. The suffering must be relieved, the naked clothed, the hungry fed; the truth for this time must be told to those who know it not. By denying ourselves of that which is not necessary, we may have a part in the great work of God.CS 301.4

    We are Christ's witnesses, and we are not to allow worldly interests so to absorb our time and attention that we pay no heed to the things that God has said must come first. There are higher interests at stake. “Seek ye first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness.” Christ gave His all to the work that He came to do, and His word to us is, “If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.” “So shall ye be My disciples.”CS 302.1

    Willingly and cheerfully Christ gave Himself to the carrying out of the will of God. He became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Shall we feel it a hardship to deny ourselves? Shall we draw back from being partakers of His sufferings? His death ought to stir every fiber of the being, making us willing to consecrate to His work all that we have and are. As we think of what He has done for us, our hearts should be filled with love.CS 302.2

    When those who know the truth practice the self-denial enjoined in God's word, the message will go with power. The Lord will hear our prayers for the conversion of souls. God's people will let their light shine forth, and unbelievers, seeing their good works, will glorify our heavenly Father. Let us relate ourselves to God in self-sacrificing obedience.—The Review and Herald, December 1, 1910.CS 302.3

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