Church Giving During COVID: Reasons for Optimism
God’s people are still giving, churches are learning from this pandemic, and God is still faithful.
October 26, 2020
What is the key to building a generous church culture?
Is it telling a compelling story?
Sharing a recent testimony?
Letting them know that their gift matters?
Twisting them with a tinge of guilt?
There are many tactics church leaders can use to motivate their people to give. The tactics we use may lead to short-term generosity. But tactics will not help build a generous church culture. There is only one way you can do that.
Zacchaeus may have been a man of small stature (Luke 19:3), but he was a man of great wealth (Luke 19:2).
He was despised by the people of his time. Not because he was a man of financial means. But because he presumably used his position as chief tax collector for collecting more than he should.
But Zacchaeus was transformed into a generous giver.
He was inspired to give half of his possessions to the poor and pay back what he took from others fourfold (Luke 19:8).
Zacchaeus was transformed when he met Jesus (Luke 19:3–6). Jesus gave him a new life and a new heart (Luke 19:9–10). He led Zacchaeus to become a giver. The hands he once used to take money are now being used to generously give money.
There’s an important lesson in this story church leaders can learn when it comes to building a generous church culture.
The key to building a generous church culture is not accomplished by your tactics or demands. The key is to lead the people in your church to Jesus.
I know this sounds trite, but hear me out.
Jesus is a giver.
He graciously gave his for us so that we might live in him.
Like Zacchaeus, it is only when we come face-to-face with Jesus when we are transformed into generous people.
This isn’t a superficial transformation. It’s not a one-time deal or giving campaign.
In Christ, our desire to give will in time overshadow our desire to receive, the grasp on our belongings will become loosened, and we are led to joyfully to give from what we have.
If you want to build a generous church culture, then preach the gospel.
Remind your church that Jesus has given them life. That he paid the ultimate sacrifice so that they would be forgiven of their sins and receive of his perfect righteousness.
Join God in his work in the life of your church by leading them to him. For God’s grace will empower the people in your church to be generous.
In time, as you preach the gospel and lead people to meet Jesus, then you will see your church respond to his generosity by being generous.