Starting in 2010, the Acton Institute began developing a seven-part stewardship curriculum to strengthen the connection of faith, calling and economics in the daily life of the believer. The small group curriculum for Our Great Exchange is largely tailored for evangelical small group engagement and features over two hours of creative storytelling and practical insight. In a particularly moving scene, Chuck Colson, in his last-ever extensive interview, talks about his calling and its impact upon his life.
Acton is committed to continually reach new audiences. This resource further engages people in the church and discipleship communities. The curriculum is another great launching pad for us to continue to grow as we expand our reach and influence with additional stewardship resources for churches and small groups.
The curriculum ties directly into our mission to promote a free and virtuous society characterized by individual liberty and sustained by religious principles. Based on the framework of our NIV Stewardship Study Bible, this curriculum focuses on seven purposes God has entrusted human beings with their resources to manage on his behalf—a profound privilege and responsibility that warrants our exploration beyond the "what" and "how" of stewardship to ask the more fundamental questions of "why" and for "what purposes" he calls each of us to be co-creators and cultivators.
Our Great Exchange is also the first curriculum available in StudySpace (StudySpace. org)—Acton's brand new digital and mobile platform that provides an enhanced learning environment and supplements the small group study material with daily, rich-media study material. Throughout the week it enables individuals in small groups to gain further insight and share thoughts with other group members and friends. The daily study material in StudySpace offers video insights from leaders, rich content from the NIV Stewardship Study Bible all revolving around passages related to entrepreneurial stewardship, generosity, business practice, whole-life discipleship and God's economic design of all aspects of daily life. You can go to OurGreatExchange.com and watch the teasers for each part of the curriculum including the teaser to Chuck Colson's compelling story.
Later this year we plan the release of a subsequent small group series with the working title of For the Life of the World. This series examines how the Church— through our effective stewardship of God's resources—shapes the cultural institutions all around us, including the family, the workplace, government and society.
In his Confessions, Augustine declares, "Give what you command, and then command whatever you will." That's a great dictum to live by and central to our thoughts as we expand our curriculum, relationships, and resources so the faithful can grow in their relationship with God and fully grow into who they are called to be.
Kris Alan Mauren