As a church leader, it’s important to know why this is the case in your church. Stewardship is arguably one of the most important aspects of the Christian life. Jesus spoke more often about money than he did prayer and faith combined.
Helping the people in your church steward their resources is an important part of your call in their life.
Below are seven common reasons why people don’t give.
As you’re involved with the people in your church, prayerfully think through these different reasons with them. Doing that will enable you to more effectively shepherd the flock and minister to each individual.
#1: They don’t believe
In general, Christians give because they have been given a new life in Christ. In time, we will respond to Jesus’ generosity by being generous.
If people in your church, both old and new, do not give, then the first hurdle they need to cross is within their heart.
Question: Do they believe in Jesus?
#2: They don’t know why
Christians receive a new life in Christ.
For the sake of pointing out the obvious, this means Christians will not know how to live for Jesus at the beginning. We need to learn how to live and love like Jesus (Matt. 28:18–20).
As a church leader, don’t assume everyone in your church understands what the Bible says about stewardship. They may have never learned, been taught, or may have received different teaching from your own.
Question: Do they know why they should give?
#3: They’re in transition
As Christians, we’re constantly growing in our faith.
As we grow in Christ, our growth trajectory is not a neat, clean, and continual straight-line. Like all of life, we need directions, take the occasional U-turn, and hit a few potholes along the way.
Are the members of your church new to faith, learning about biblical stewardship, and need of making lifestyle changes to glorify God with their possessions? As a church leader, it’s important to graciously walk alongside of your people during these times as God graciously works in their life.
Question: Are the people in your church in transition?
#4: They’re in a difficult financial season
Let’s face it.
Life can be difficult.
Many of us — if not most — will go through seasons of financial highs and lows.
During these times, it’s important to remind people to focus on stewarding what they have, not on what they don’t have (2 Cor. 8:12). This will help people fight fear, overcome anxiety, and battle discontentment over stewarding what they don’t have.
God’s grace helps us to be generous after financial setbacks, poverty, and difficult seasons (2 Cor. 8:1–2, 7).
Question: Are they in a difficult financial season?
#5: They don’t know how
Most people within your church will know how they can give. But people who are newer to your church may not know.
Be sure to regularly teach people how they can give. Whether it’s in the offering plate, online, or through a mobile app, share with people the options they have available to give.
Question: Do people know how they can give?
#6: They don’t know where their money goes
How do you steward the resources you’re given?
Do you provide an annual report?
Inviting people to look into the finances of the church will encourage (or in some cases discourage) them to see how their gifts are being stewarded.
It’s okay if people ask questions or express concerns on how your church is stewarding money. This is one way the church holds itself accountable.
Fight the temptation to keep the church’s finances in the dark. Walk in the light and invite the members of your church to look into your financial records.
Question: Do people know how the money they give is stewarded?
#7: They don’t see why
Administrative costs are essential for running a local church. There’s no way around it. But giving toward the day-to-day needs is not a compelling reason to give.
God is at work in your church.
People are coming to faith. Marriages are being restored. People are sharing the gospel in their community and around the world. You’re hosting children during the summer vacation Bible school.
Share with your church how God is at work. Let them see the lives redeemed and changed. Invite them to be a part of what God is doing. They need to know that their gifts are what makes the ministry of your local church possible.
Question: Are you sharing stories of God’s work in your church?