Tuesday, June 12, 2007

God's People Respond

It is always a joy to see God's people respond to a need. A month or so ago, I wrote that we were going to get the LSB but first we were going to need to raise the money. Well less than three weeks ago we started raising the money with a goal of 5700 and as of last Sunday 6100 had been given to the hymnal fund. At the same time we were raising money for equipment to start an informal evening service. Think bible study with music. People also responded nicely to the free will offering taken at a church lunch. All of this has made me quite happy and also feel vindicated. All those naysayers telling me people don't give to free will offerings, you have to charge'em to make money. A view I am happy to say is changing after I challenged our Outreach ministries to take only a freewill offering for the dinner they hosted during lent.

Now as happy as I am, I am also very baffled. Why? Because, we have a significant shortfall between our approved budget and offerings. I won't say how much but I will say it is a very big number. I am curious as to why they give so readily in these cases above but when it comes to regular offerings they are lagging so far behind.


jWinters said...

Well...my initial laughing question would be "What awful hymnal were you using before that got people to spend money hand over fist to get rid of it and get a new one?"

That probably misses the point.

People love to give to stuff that they can be proud of. The trick is to get people to walk in and notice that the lights are on, the Sunday School kids have donut holes and OJ, and homeless people are given groceries.

We tend to think that telling people that they can be proud of their stewardship is a sin. I don't know that it is Biblical to foist hyper-modesty on people. They will come up with modesty on their own because they will see their paltry gift in the light of Christ's sacrifice.

In the meantime - make everybody look up and see that the lightbulbs are on....and make them look at a couple that have burned out.

in Christ,

Dr. Luther in the 21st Century said...

That would be LW. Oh, I think part of it is that we are maintaining a budget for a church with ~500 active members when we are down to ~350. We lost a fair number of key people when we started a mission congregation. The sudden drop has affected us poorly and has given us the disastrous mentality of remember what it was like. Part of my job with our Outreach ministries is changing that attitude.