Health and Growth

6 Ways the Gospel Changes Your Work

The gospel and work isn't something you can separate or compartmentalize. Here are 6 ways the gospel influences your work.

6 Ways the Gospel Changes Your Work

Like it or not, most of us have to work for a living.

Whether this means a full-time job, being an entrepreneur, or having a side hustle, we spend a good deal of our time earning a paycheck. There’s a reason why Working For the Weekend was a hit song.


This is true for Christians and nonbelievers alike.

All of us have bills to pay. Most of us have a boss to keep happy. But there is still a difference between the work of Jesus followers and everyone else. Not because we’re any better or more blessed, but because we have the gospel.

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The word of God makes a difference in the work we do. Whether or not we work in the church or faith-based organizations, the Bible should influence the shape and trajectory of our careers. And here’s just a few reasons why.

#1. The gospel changes why we work

More than anything else, scriptures about work help us to define the reason why we work. Living a life for Christ means our professional life should be about more than just collecting a salary. Working is about more than a job title or the company who employs us.

Jesus’ life reminds us that life is more than a job. Our life is about glorifying God and loving one another. As such, our careers should be an extension of that. It’s not always easy to do, but as much as possible, we should seek to serve God and other people through our work.

When you adopt this perspective, it can radically change the work you do. Even if you don’t love your job, you can still be hopeful because your life is much more than work. The gospel changes the reason why we get up and go to the office every weekday.

#2. The gospel changes what job we choose

If the gospel influences why we work, it should naturally influence the jobs we pick.

That’s not to say that we must all choose Christian-related jobs. All of us can’t work for a church, or at a nonprofit, or as an international missionary. It’s perfectly OK for there to be Christians employed as accountants, chefs, and racecar drivers.


However, your faith should still play a role in determining your career path. Ask yourself why you think God is leading you in a specific direction. Pray before accepting a job. Discuss career changes with people you trust. Don’t make your livelihood doing anything immoral.

Sometimes it’s not always going to be obvious what professional industry you should be in. But knowing what the Bible says about making decisions can make a difference in the jobs you take. We spend so much time at work—it should be a place that brings us closer to God, not drive us further away from him.

#3. The gospel changes who we work with

Occasionally, it’s pretty apparent the companies or people we shouldn’t work with. That doesn’t mean we should only work with other Christians. That would be shortsighted and limiting.

But there are times that coworkers or work environments are detrimental to our faith and our career. Maybe it’s the group of colleagues who continually pressure you drink too much at after-work functions. Perhaps it’s the business client that fudges their financial paperwork. Maybe it’s the CEO who insists you worship him as your deity (hopefully that one’s a joke).

As Christians, we should expect ourselves and those we work with to have certain standards. We can still work with people who don’t share our exact faith and values, but not to the point that it makes us compromise what we believe or who we are.

#4. The gospel changes our workplace values

Plenty of workplaces are competitive. It takes hard work and long hours to climb the corporate ladder. Some of the people we work with would do anything to get ahead—to earn that raise or promotion. Working for Christ means that there are some lines we shouldn’t cross at a job.

Related: 5 Critical Questions to Discovering Godly Ambition

Being a Christian doesn’t mean our work can’t be excellent. In fact, we should always hold ourselves to high-performance standards. But we should also hold ourselves to higher moral standards. It’s not worth lying or cheating our way to a bigger paycheck because we lose ourselves in the process.

One of the best ways you can elevate being a Christian in a secular work environment is to be the most ethical and trustworthy person in the building. When your coworkers see that your values come from your faith, they’ll learn to respect both.

#5. The gospel changes our work-life balance

The Bible can help show us where and how to work. It can also teach us when not to work.

Even if a true work-life balance is a myth, we can still manage to have a healthy margin between our personal and professional lives. If we give too much of our time to the job, there won’t be enough left for God.

Rest is a biblical principle practiced by God himself. However, the fourth commandment (“keep the sabbath day holy”) is the only one Christians brag about breaking. This doesn’t just mean working on Sunday. It means allowing work to creep into any place you should reserve for your family, God, or self-care. Set clear boundaries for your work and hold yourself accountable.

Don’t check email on the weekends. Stop answering phone calls from your boss at 2 a.m. Disconnect from social media during meals. Don’t pack your laptop when leaving on vacation. Prioritize your family over work. These simple steps will help you to keep work at work, and honor the sanctity of rest.

#6. The gospel changes how we lead at work

Some of us are lucky enough to become leaders in our professional lives—CEO, director, or manager. Even if we don’t have a leadership title, we can all take on a leadership role at work. Having a leadership role comes with the responsibility to lead well.

Thankfully, we have the example of a great leader to learn from. Jesus was an outstanding leader of men in his own professional life. He led with empathy, compassion, and wisdom. These are smart traits to adopt in your leadership style. Ask yourself—how would Jesus lead?

Learn how to listen to the people around you. Lead by example to avoid the pitfall of hypocrisy. Clearly communicate expectations. Build trust through relationships with coworkers. Being an effective leader at work gives you the opportunity to show the love of God to others.

Over to you

As believers, we have the opportunity to make an impact with our faith and our work. God’s word through the gospel should be a guiding light for both.

How does your faith impact the work you do? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Editor's Note: This is a guest post from Robert Carnes. Robert is a writer and storyteller. He's the author of The Original Storyteller: Become a Better Storyteller in 30 Days. A former church communicator and nonprofit marketer, Robert works as a managing editor for Orange in Atlanta.

Why Write Church Donation Letters?

In a previous blog post, I shared the different ways your church can thank donors—from automated emails to year-end giving reports. Printed donation letters also play an essential role in your church’s stewardship efforts.

Donation letters are the Swiss Army knife of your church’s gratitude arsenal. It may not be the most powerful—but it’s versatile, handy, and gets used often.

Your basic church donation letter can serve many different purposes, including:

  • Acknowledging that you received a donation
  • Thanking the giver for being generous with their finances
  • Sharing other ways the person can support your church
  • Allowing the donor to write the gift off on their taxes
  • Encouraging supporters to make recurring donations
  • Requesting future donations from church members

A single, well-crafted donation letter can pull together several of these things simultaneously. Better donation letters lead to more giving, which leads to more donation letters—thus creating a cycle of on-going church generosity.

Church Donation Letter Samples

Here’s the good news—you don’t have to write an individualized letter for every person who gives to your church. That would be tough to do for even smaller churches. And most donors don’t expect you to. They’d rather you be putting their gift to better use in the community, instead of ceaselessly writing thank you notes.

With the possible exception of some unique circumstances, your church can use template language for the majority of your church donation letters. You’ll have to add in custom details like the donor’s name and gift amount, but you can write everything else in advance.  

To make this even easier on you, here are a few basic church donation letter templates you can copy and paste. Keep in mind that not all of these have to be in print—you could just as easily turn some of these samples into email appeals.

1. Donation Acknowledgment Letter

The Donation Acknowledgement Letter is a basic way you can confirm and affirm a monetary gift to your church. Sending these is standard practice in church and nonprofit culture.

Dear [first name],
I want to personally thank you for your donation of [gift amount] to [church name]. We’re honored you would bless us with your generosity. Donations like yours make a big difference in the work our church is doing in the community.
Without givers like you, our church can’t have an impact or influence in our community. With your support, we’re partnering with local nonprofits, sending out global mission trips, and hosting small groups on topics that help real people like you. Together, we can make a difference.
Because we’re a tax-exempt nonprofit, you also get to write this donation off on your taxes. This letter serves as official proof of your donation, so keep it in your records come tax season. At the end of the year, we’ll also send you an annual recap with how much you’ve given to the church.
Thank you for supporting [church name]!
[your name]

2. Donation Request Letter

Not every church member realizes the importance of giving, or understand Bible verses about tithing and giving.  So a Donation Request Letter helps to spread that awareness and encourage a spirit of generosity.

Dear [first name],
How are the finances in your household? That was a rhetorical question, so you don’t have to answer—besides, this is a letter so we wouldn’t hear you anyway. But we still want you to think about that question.
Money is a uniquely human issue, one we all struggle with to one degree or another. Even if you’re financially blessed, you still have the burden of stewarding your money wisely. And we believe that one of the best ways to invest your money is into the local church.
Tithing (giving 10% of your income) on a regular basis not only supports the work we do at [church name]. It doesn’t just support local missions and community growth. It also shows an obedience to God by making his work a financial priority in your life.
So if you find yourself ready to put God first in both your heart and your wallet, we encourage you to make a one-time gift or sign up to make recurring donations. That way, you won’t have to ever wonder again about the financial status of your household.
[your name]

3. Monthly Giving Letter

Many church donations aren’t just one-time gifts. Plenty of givers contribute monthly—and that should be acknowledged.

Use this template to correspond with recurring givers.  

Dear [first name],
Thank you for being an active and faithful member of our church community. By giving to our church on a monthly basis, you’re showing that our church has a meaningful place in your heart. We just wanted to write this to let you know that you’re in our heart, too.
Donating to the church monthly allows us to preach the gospel, make disciples, and support others in our community who need help. Others like the local food bank and the nearby homeless shelter. We’re answering the cry of the needy, and it’s all thanks to contributors like you.
We earnestly appreciate your ongoing support and want to let you know we’re here for you. If there’s ever anything we can do for you and your family, don’t hesitate to reach out. You are a valued member of our church family. And you’re financial support is making a difference.
[your name]

4. Year-End Giving Letter

At the end of each year, it’s customary to give your church supporters a summary of their gifts. The primary reason is for tax purposes, but it’s also a way to recap everything your church has done over the past year with their support.

Dear [first name],
You’re getting this letter because you gave to [church name] at some point during the past year. That might have been a one-time gift, or recurring donations. Either way, we want to thank you for your generous support. Every contribution helps.
One of the official reasons for this letter is for tax purposes. That’s right—you get to write these donations off on your taxes. Which is why we’ve included a summary of all the contributions you’ve made to our church this year.
But the other reason for this letter is to let you know what we’ve done with the money you gave. We take stewardship very seriously, which means we value spending our time and resources wisely.
During the year, our church supported local nonprofits, sent global missions teams, and baptised quite a few people. It was a great year for us—thanks in large part to donors like you.
So thank you for your support of our church, and we hope you’ll consider continuing to contribute to our mission in the coming year.
[your name]  

5. Church Fundraising Letter

Sometimes you need to make a more significant financial push using tried and true church fundraising ideas. Some churches call this a Stewardship Campaign or a Church Capital Campaign. Either way, the goal is to raise a certain amount of money for a big project. And typically, a solid letter of appeal is an integral part of that.

Dear [first name],
God has a plan for everyone and everything. That includes you, and it includes [church name]. None of us can fully know God’s plan—the best we can do is pray and listen for clarity. Our church leadership has been doing just that and are excited to announce our latest church project.
[Detail the outline of the major church project—this could include a building campaign, or raising support for a global mission trip. Anything specific to your church that requires a fundraising letter. Be sure to include a fundraising goal so everyone knows what you’re shooting for.]
But we can’t pull this off without your support. Whether you give to the church on a regular basis, or just attend on occasion, we’re asking you to consider contributing to this massive undertaking prayerfully. It’s something we need our entire church community’s help with.
Even if you can’t make a large gift, know that every little bit helps. It’s more about coming together as a community united behind a common cause. We hope that you’ll consider making a donation towards this great step forward that we’re making together.
[your name]

Tips when writing church donation letters

It’s not enough to just copy and paste this content and send away. The key to an effective church donation letter is a touch of personalization. Follow these tips to take your donation letters to the next level:

  • Examples: Add specific examples of how your church will use the donation. Tell a story about the work your church is doing in the community and connect that with giving.
  • Personalization: For regular donors, don’t be afraid to add a short, handwritten personal note. This shows that you’ve singled them out with praise.
  • Timeliness: Sending donation letters quickly reminds people you’re thankful for them. But this also takes organization and efficiency. All the more reason to use pre-written templates.
  • Storytelling: Everything is better with stories—including donation letters. Weave in a specific narrative of how your church is making a difference and how the money will be used.

There’s no one right or wrong way to write a donation letter or request contributions. You’ve got to do what is right for your church and congregation. But if you stick to these general tips, you’ll probably start to see some traction when it comes to giving.

What’s next?

Most people don’t love talking about money in church. But it’s a necessary and vital part of your church. And maximizing your efforts when it comes to donation letters will help make those conversations more comfortable. So what do you do next to put this into effect?

  • Customize these letters: Take the samples above and make them work for your church. Personalize the content. Remove the stuff that doesn’t sound genuine and add in stuff that does. Remember that these are just a starting point.
  • Create some systems: Develop processes that make it easy for you to replicate sending donation letters. Use a letter template that allows you to drop in names and details. Then develop guidelines for when these letters will be sent out.
  • Empower a champion: Find out who is going to be responsible for making these letters happen. Rather than thinking of this as adding more work to their plate, think about how you can elevate their work. This could be a staff member, or a volunteer.
  • Start sending: All of this will be for nothing if you don’t actually send out the letters. Take the time to get it right and get them into the hands of your church donors.

And if you’re looking for ways to grow your church’s giving capacity, Tithely can help.

We provide several different ways your church members can support your church financially—from online giving, text to give solutions, and giving kiosks.

Tithely’s systems make it as easy as possible for people to give to your church. Now all you need to start doing is generating a culture of gratitude. There’s nothing standing in your way. Go unleash generosity in your church.

How does your church use donation letters to spread generosity? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

Editor's Note: This is a guest post from Robert Carnes. Robert is a writer and storyteller. He's the author of The Original Storyteller: Become a Better Storyteller in 30 Days. A former church communicator and nonprofit marketer, Robert works as a managing editor for Orange in Atlanta.


6 Ways the Gospel Changes Your Work