Given the financial challenges many affiliates have experienced since the COVID disruption, it is helpful to consider some assumptions that sometimes undermine the operations and discipleship efforts of churches and agencies. In no particular order, here are five common ones.
- People are offended by talk about money.
Most people are not! We need to be careful not to overreact to what one or two have actually said and then cease connecting with the majority who are on-side. The few who are truly offended are probably not giving anyway.
- We shouldn’t talk about money so much.
We should probably talk about it more than we do! It was a significant subject for Jesus and how can it not also be for us. Discipleship, mentoring, and preaching are key vehicles for addressing the very real financial issues people face.
- Churches are always asking for money.
So too are all organisations with a compelling vision or a product to sell! An apologetic ask or a minimal mention is counterproductive, though. We need to ask well. Many churches make it hard for people to give, and will often display giving information for less time than it takes for a phone to be poised and ready to capture relevant details.
- The New Testament doesn’t teach tithing.
People argue that so that they can give less, not more! New Testament teaching inspires even greater generosity than the giving of a tenth, particularly within local communities. Budgeting makes generosity a planned priority.
- People can’t afford to give.
They can’t afford not to! Discipleship obedience does not require a giving prescription by a minister, just a well-placed Bible-based faith challenge. God gives seed to the sower (2 Cor. 9:10) but not to the non-sower. Faithful giving is faith-filled giving that trusts God to provide as we first sow, and because He says, not because a minister pushes an agenda.
Could your church or agency benefit from an inspiring life in its faith and vision?
So much can be said about this subject. Perhaps so much should be said, especially if the subject has been under-represented in times past. Why not reach out to churches and leaders who have seen significant shifts in giving and vision-casting? It could be your 2024 difference-making next step.