If you answered a medieval family clan from Scotland, then you would be onto something but you wouldn’t likely win a spelling bee. Your spellchecker however might give you the thumbs up. Mine did, and for a couple months the profile I had on nonlegibletyping.com stated that I considered myself a “stuart” of the earth. Blasphemy! Poor old great grandpa McIntyre was no doubt turning in his grrrrrrAAAAAve.
The Stuart clan did in fact derive its name from the family trade, as did many people at that time. It was only natural since people defined themselves by what they did. Hmmm. More about that later.
What about today? Can you imagine being called Jane Naturopath? or Sue Lifecoach? Or for those of us who work full-time and have a business on the side: Sandy Proctologist-Magician? And what would happen if you left your first career and married another one? We’d certainly be providing job security for Barbara Civilservant and her clan while we deal with a personal identity crisis requiring years of self-help books and girlfriend therapy…and a few “interesting” short-term gigs to keep our skills fresh, so to speak.
So if your last name is Stuart, stewardship is in your blood. You just need to hug that family tree. But what if your last name is Baker, Archer, Fletcher, or ironically that of any one of the famous oil and gas industry clans? Is there a Steward in you? No you say? Too busy with life? Well, has there ever been a Steward in you? S – T – E – W – A – R – D ladies! Tsk tsk.
The correct answer is absolutely! It is who you are at the very core. In fact, I would go so far as to say “Steward” is your middle name. Yeah baby!
I imagine your face is squashed like a frog now (I’d love to see a picture of that by the way…like a “before” shot), so let me explain.
First, a definition (from dictionary.com): A person who manages another’s property or financial matters; one who administers anything as the agent of another or others.
Here’s how you know you are a steward without even consciously realizing what you do.
If you’re a mother, you’re a steward. You don’t own your child’s poop do you?
If you’re a spouse, …. I’ll leave this one for you to decide.
If you volunteer, you’re a steward.
If you have older parents you take care of, you’re a steward.
If you house sit for your neighbour’s pet fish, you’re a steward.
The second level of stewardship boils down to how you view the forest, oceans, animals (including your pets), rain, air, the entire natural world. Do YOU own any of that? If your answer is no. Then…
If you care for a pet, you’re a steward.
If you tend a garden, you’re a steward.
If you carry your own coffee mug, you’re a steward.
If you use natural chemical free products, you are a steward.
If, if, if …
If the only connection you maintain with anything outside yourself (we’ll leave the third level of stewardship for a future discussion) is the plant you bought on a whim because you felt your place needed a little life, even if it just has one green leaf left on it, guess what? You are still a steward…just not a very good one …YET!
QED or K-ching! You’re loaded with stewardship! So much so that you even have your own personal jet. W.O.W. Woman on Wings!
Still not convinced?
What happened when the tsunami hit Indonesia, the earthquake leveled Haiti, the tsunami trashed Japan, Hurricane Katrina destroyed New Orleans, Hurricane Sandy mangled the US Northeast, and the list goes on… Time after time humanity has shown that stewardship runs deep within us. We take care of what we deem precious. We can’t help ourselves. We are inherently good. You are inherently good.
Even if someone paid you billions of dollars to keep you from performing a single act of stewardship for the rest of your life, you will secretly stray or you will spiral into despair because deep down you really are what you do.
Those who forget, live the life of regret.
Do you want to go there? I sure don’t.
What makes YOU a steward? And what does Stewardship mean to you? Show us that “after” shot.