Finding Christ Relevant to Every Area of Life

What does it mean to be a steward of grace in marriage?

DDCommunity: Marital Stewardship of God's Grace

I am a steward of God’s grace to my spouse

Because I am the recipient of God’s grace, I can be a steward of God’s grace in my marriage. That is to say God works through me to minister to my mate. God’s grace gives me the power to live that enables me to fulfill His will and be complete. And since I am complete in Christ and God supplies what I need in marriage our masterpiece marriage displays the portrait of Christ and His bride for all to see.

Grace may only flow forth from a fountain set in the Rock, capable of producing the sweet waters of redemptive love. A heart in tune with God’s Spirit and the direction of His will possesses passions and concerns for their spouse unnatural to this present world. Holy Spirit interaction turns our souls toward selfless resolve in seeking His good pleasure through the outpouring of grace.

In the original design husband and wife were to work together as stewards over Christ’s creation. The fall separated humankind from God as well as man and woman from each other. Now we spend our energies trying to understand our differences instead of embracing Christ’s redemptive work that is the only means to reunite the broken. People, the highest and most dignified of creation, are called and equipped to be the most effective within God’s economy as stewards of grace.

Stewards of Jesus’ flock

Jesus warns of the hireling who lacks loving commitment to both his responsibilities and the sheep but values his own life above the helpless and needy.

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd sacrifices his life for the sheep. A hired hand will run when he sees a wolf coming. He will abandon the sheep because they don’t belong to him and he isn’t their shepherd. And so the wolf attacks them and scatters the flock. The hired hand runs away because he’s working only for the money and doesn’t really care about the sheep.

John 10:11–13 NLT

In a world valuing prestige, God’s people are called to value one another instead of managing our own interests. Hurt, frustration, anger, envy, greed, and thievery seize the heart of disloyal overseers.

Stewards of God’s Holy Spirit

As stewards we manifest God’s grace in our marriage through our loving disposition. A steward of God’s Holy Spirit possesses a repository of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, and self-control (Gal. 5:22), evidencing the image of Christ and the character of godliness. Stewardship exists by virtue of God’s love and mercy as a means to convey God’s grace to others, seeking the godly best on behalf of all. In daily living a steward understands the nature of the need and seeks to minister through the sundry resources given by the Spirit of God.

Stewards of God’s grace in marriage

Recognizing his position as a steward of God’s grace in Philemon 3, Paul prays for “Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ” (ESV).

“An appeal for grace is an entreaty to God to supply His unmerited favor to meet fresh needs. Paul wants the Lord to provide the sufficiency of His power, guidance, wisdom, quality and tone that is an elixir of spiritual life. Grace in its new bounties will lift Philemon to experience and show God-honoring attitudes, words and actions in dealing with the issues of life.”1

Paul’s continuing prayer indicates the results of a life responding to the grace of God.

“I thank my God always when I remember you in my prayers, because I hear of your love and of the faith that you have toward the Lord Jesus and for all the saints, and I pray that the sharing of your faith may become effective for the full knowledge of every good thing that is in us for the sake of Christ.”

Philemon 4–6 ESV

We may all experience refreshment through God’s grace. But stewarding an abundant supply of God’s grace in marriage further evidences Jesus’ intentions for His bride, the church.

Insight Journal

  • I ministered grace to my mate when . . .

1 Jim Rosscup, Exposition on Prayer: Igniting the Flame to Fuel Our Communication with God New Testament Volume 2 (Galatians thru Revelation) (Chattanooga, TN: AMG Publishers, 2011), 2400.

Marriages that Minister by J. Kirk and Melanie D. Lewis

Excerpts from Marriages that Minister by J. Kirk & Melanie D. Lewis. Available from your favorite book retailers including Amazon and Redemption Press. (As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you.)

Read more from Marriages that Minister: A Portrait of Christ and His Bride.

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