For many of you in rented accommodation, it’s moving day. The mad dash to squeeze all your worldly possessions into your mate’s Corsa and to cover up those stains on the carpet… so it might be time to get off Instagram and crack on with cleaning your cupboards!
Moving house, like any major transition, is a melting pot of emotions – sadness for what’s passing, excitement for what’s to come, all topped off with a whole heap of logistiscs (a.k.a. inconvenience). And it’s at this point in the day, surrounded by all the pots and pans your housemates so kindly ‘gifted’ you before moving out early, that you’re probably longing for the day when you have a permanent place you can call your own.
But as you glance at the oven, or the shower tray, and wonder just how much dirt you can leave and still get your deposit back, I wonder if it’s worth taking a moment to consider if God might be saying anything?
All of us, in the grand scheme of things, are stewards. In this life we get given things to “possess” for a time but in the end, just like your rented room, at some point those things you thought were yours end up passed along to somewhere else.
I don’t see this as a sadness, but a beautiful part of the way God orders the world. Even the breath in your lungs isn’t yours to hold on to. I think the invitation in all of this to ask ourselves, is what I’m stewarding getting better or getting worse?
Maybe these are too clunky terms, but I think you can see the point: am I adding or taking away? Am I tightly holding on to what has been given to me and merely consuming it for my benefit, or could I get a little glimpse of a new way of contributing to the world.
A friend of mine once stated her New Year’s Resolution as being ‘leaving people and places better than I found them’. I love that, and think a key to getting there is see ourselves less as owners and more as stewards – looking after something for the benefit of those who come later.
Ralph Pedley, Campus Awakening UK Director