About Tracy Earl Welliver

Tracy Earl Welliver is the Director of Parish Community and Engagement for LPi and an active member of Saint Pius X Catholic Church in Greensboro, North Carolina, where he previously served as Pastoral Associate for 22 years. Saint Pius X received the Archbishop Murphy Award in 2009 from the ICSC. Tracy is a writer, speaker, and teacher in the areas of stewardship, engagement, catechesis, and strengths theory, and has worked with Catholic communities throughout the US, Australia, and New Zealand. You can read Tracy’s Everyday Stewardship column in LPi’s CONNECT!, a bimonthly lectionary-based liturgy preparation publication. His writing can also be read on his Nutshell Blog, The Main Thing Blog, and in contributions to Catholic TechTalk. He also serves on the faculty for the ICSC Stewardship Institutes. Tracy has theology degrees from DeSales University and Duke Divinity School. He has been married 23 years and he and his wife, Mariann, have 3 children.

All That We Need

An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time 2017

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Remember a time when jealousy or envy reared its ugly head and you wished you had that which someone else owned? Maybe it was a house, a car, a bank account, or even that luscious green lawn. All humans have had that feeling before and some of us more often than others. After the emotion hit you, hopefully, you considered all the good gifts you did have in your life and gave thanks for them. Let’s pray that you are still not hanging onto those feelings. Unfortunately, we do live in a world that seems to fuel those desires and push us toward wanting more and more.

But let’s level the field here. Did you ever hear of someone who died and was able to take any of those things with them into the afterlife? The reality is that nothing we have in this life truly belongs to us. We come into this world with nothing and as time goes by more gifts are entrusted to us but we never truly own them. So whom do they belong to anyway?

Of course, you know the answer. All that we have has been entrusted to us by God; to be cherished, cultivated, and then given back to Him for His glory. God doesn’t need any of these things, and we only need them short term. All that we need long-term is God. If He is all we need in the end, I bet our lives would be more fruitful and happier if we focused on that now instead of later.

Stewardship is Not a Competition

An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the 25th Sunday in Ordinary Time

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As everyday stewards, I hope that each of us tries to live daily lives of generosity for the glory of God. I hope that we are all working to cultivate characteristics of a good everyday steward so that we can grow in maturity of faith and draw closer to Christ. But if we could accurately see on a magical computer spreadsheet how everyone else around us was living life would it impact how we lived out our stewardship way of life? If we found out that others weren’t trying as hard as we were or they were not nearly as generous as we would it give us reason to pause?

In the workplace, school, and general life, people can easily look around and choose to adapt what they are doing to match more closely what others are doing. Why give work more hours if no one else is willing? Why give a 20% tip to a waiter if you suspect everyone else is only giving 15%? Why spend hours studying for a test when no one else is taking it that seriously?

Our lives of stewardship should never be measured against that of others. Even though we are all called to give all we are and all we have to God, each one of us is unique in our response to that call. Instead of any type of comparison that may temper our generosity, we should hold to the truth that the more we give of ourselves the more fulfilled we will feel. Also, as we grow in our relationship with God, the more we will want to glorify him. Stewardship is not a competition. It is a call to serve a God without counting the cost.