The Church is not about money. It’s that simple. But it is about life – all of life – which, for most of us, involves at least a little bit of money. And what we do with what we have says a lot about who we are – and who we are growing to be.
And while the Church so often gets money wrong (think: TV hucksters, or celebrity pastors known most for their popularity and their paychecks, or church leaders who misuse church funds), this doesn’t mean we stop talking about money. To do that would mean we would have to stop talking about life.
I understand that talking about money makes some of us uncomfortable. Especially when the talk turns to my money. Even so, all of us need, on occasion, challenges that are both specific and clear. Ones that say exactly what is being asked, and describe how to take that step. Even when it makes me uncomfortable, I need to be stretched in specific ways. And so do you.
So that is why I am challenging you, if you are a part of Fern Creek Christian, to take the next step in living a generous life. (For that matter, if you are not a part of Fern Creek, you can certainly do this at your church. I’m pretty sure they won’t mind.) To stretch yourself in your giving, I am asking you to do one of these three things over the next three weeks:
- If you are not giving anything, or just giving occasionally, will you plan to give something, intentionally and thoughtfully, over the next 3 weeks? Would you allow God to grow you and teach you by planning to give to God’s work at your church for the three weeks of Aug 24, 31 & Sep 7?
- Some of you are giving regularly, but from the leftovers of your income. If this describes you, would you commit to giving from the top of your paycheck? This means that you sit down and intentionally set aside an amount of your income, before you start tackling bills and “me money.” Again, try this for three weeks, and see what God teaches you about faith, money, and you.
- Finally, some of you are giving regularly and thoughtfully. But maybe God would stretch you to give sacrificially, in a way that says your first priority is going to be the work of God. Even if it hurts a bit. Even if it means you cut back on trips to Burger King and baseball games and the beach. So, I am asking those of you who give regularly, but are not currently setting aside 10% of your income (a tithe), to step out in faith and try that during the next three weeks. As I said on Sunday, this may feel crazy – even impossible. And you’re right. Unless … unless, you remember who you are and who you belong to.
If you are a part of the Fern Creek church family (or any community of believers) – what would it look like for you to take your next step in faithful giving? Will you take that next step during these next three weeks? If you do, be ready for it to be about so much more than money.