Everyone's Invited: Giving
Growing up, we didn’t really go to church. When I did go it was either to a cold nearly empty Anglican building or to my cousin’s baptist church where they took things very seriously indeed!
Whilst both churches were very different they had in common this one bit of the service where some serious people would come around during a hymn and pass around either a shiny brass plate (the Anglicans) or a bag with wooden handles (the Baptists). As the plate/bag neared, a grown up would lean over and hand you a coin. “Put it in there.” “Why? What for?”
Apparently this was ‘The Offering’; where it went and what it was for was a mystery to me!
For many of us this might be where we are regarding financial giving and following Jesus. So let me explain some principles and then suggest some things we can all do.
Our giving is not a tax; it is a gift given as an act of worship. A gift we give in response to the amazing gift we have received in and through Jesus. In choosing to give financially to our church we are choosing to worship God with our finances.
Our giving is not a membership fee; it is a gift to enable the work of our local church. When we give in worship we give primarily to our local church. Why? Because this enables us, as the local church, to fulfil the mission God has given us to to tell people about the amazing love of Jesus.
Our giving is not all the same; it reflects our individual situations and stories. God is not interested in the amount, but interested in how we respond from the heart given our own circumstances.
We are in a season of growth at B&A Church. It is amazing seeing people join in with what God is doing and discovering God’s love for them. Growing churches face many challenges. A common one is making sure we are structured for our new size, and that we are able to do all we need to do to fulfil our mission and God’s call. Key to meeting that challenge is growing in our giving.
Throughout 2018 we face a challenge to grow our giving across this year by approx. £2,000 per month. That means that by the end of the year our total amount of monthly giving needs to be £2,000 higher than it currently is. So each month we need to grow our giving by an average of £160. There are lots of ways we can do that; 12 new standing orders of £160, 20 new standing orders of £100, or two standing orders of £1,000. What will probably happen is that it will be a whole range of standing orders representing a whole range of situations and incomes.
This is for all of us, every amount counts. So if you are a member of B&A and you’ve not yet set up a standing order why not pick up a form at the back of church, fill it in and get going on this amazing way of worshipping.
We know that for some people money can be a really difficult subject. Some of us may be struggling with managing finances, debts and keeping our heads above water. If you want help, we have people in church who would love to chat to you confidentially and help you begin a journey out of your difficulties. If that is you, please do speak to one of the clergy.