When we launched our church almost 9 years ago we made a critical mistake. We avoided talking about money. Our motives were really good. We had seen the issue of money handled poorly by the churches in our past and we wanted to handle it in a different way. The problem with our plan was that we really never talked about the issue. The problem with our strategy then was that we might have wanted to not talk about it but when you read the Bible you see Jesus talk about it all the time. Read any of the Gospels and you will discover Jesus talks about money frequently so it’s difficult when the church doesn’t address the issue.
Our story changed in 2011 when our team realized we had made a mistake with our approach. My friend Casey Graham and his team at Giving Rocket helped us face the issue in our church and I hope you will check them out. What we learned is that you never stop learning when it comes to church, money, and funding the mission. You never stop learning because as a church grows the challenges change.
This past Sunday we pushed pause on our current series and gave a financial update to our church. Our team prayed and planned this Sunday for the past three weeks and I was blown away by how God worked. I was once again reminded about the passion and dedication of our church family at Grace Community Church. We made this Sunday available to anyone so you can see the service on our website. Adam Dressler spoke and our Rossview Campus and I spoke at our Kenwood Campus. Would love for you to check out how we handled the talk this week. We worked hard to inform, inspire, and lead through a hard topic.
Here are a few principles we have come to embrace over the past few years when it comes to church, money, and funding the mission…
- People need information & inspiration in order to invest. // Most leaders focus on one area or the other and people really need both. We have to balance both needs.
- People need direction not demands. // Guilt is a short term motivator and Jesus is about freedom and not guilt. Lead people and never lean into guilt.
- People need honesty and the freedom to ask questions. // Be real and invite people to ask hard questions.
- People need to be invited to give. // We all like to be asked to help solve a problem. People need to be asked to give to your organization. Everyone else is inviting people to participate and give to their nonprofit so why would the church not invite people to support God’s plan A to bring hope to the world.
- People need to trust in order to sacrifice. // Trust is earned and when people feel they can trust leadership they will be able to invest in the mission.
- People need to be reminded what their investment if accomplishing. // People need to be reminded why they are giving! We try to do this every week during our offering.
If you are a church leader I would love to hear how your church helps people fund the mission. If you are a part of Grace Community Church I just want to say thanks for allowing us to serve, lead, and invest in you and also thanks for supporting the mission and vision of Grace Community Church!