The offering is the most boring time in the typical church. One reason why is so little thought and planning goes into it. I actually had a staff member tell me once that the offering interupted the flow of worship and irritated her. That view while not openly expressed by many is none the less what we loudly communicate with poor offering set ups. Is it any wonder that giving is in decline?
The offering should be viewed as worship and thus made worshipful! One way to accomplish this is by setting up the offering to be meaningful. I wrote an e-book a few years back entitled, “Elevator Pitch Your Offerings.” In this book I give 52 one to two minute offering talks. Since it is Memorial Day weekend I thought I would share with you for free what I wrote for this weekend. Here it is…
A Memorial Gift – Memorial Day
This weekend is Memorial Day. The sad thing about a lot of our holidays is that we have forgotten why they exist. Memorial Day which is celebrated on the last Monday of May was first started to commemorate fallen Union soldiers that died in the Civil War. By the 20th century it had been extended to honor all Americans who have died in all wars. It developed from there into a day for general expressions of memory for deceased relatives whether they had served in the military or not. So the day is suppose to be a day of remembering and honoring those that have gone before us.
The Christian singer Steve Green sang a popular song few years ago entitled, “Find Us Faithful.” That song says, “We’re pilgrims on the journey of the narrow road. And those who’ve gone before us line the way, cheering on the faithful, encouraging the weary their lives a stirring testament to God’s sustaining grace. Surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses Let us run the race not only for the prize but as those who’ve gone before us let us leave to those behind us the heritage of faithfulness passed on through godly lives.”
The song is based upon Hebrews 12:1 that says, “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.”
Think about where we would be without those that have paid the price for our freedom. We owe so much to so many. It is fitting that we take time out to remember their sacrifice. It is fitting that we memorialize those who served our nation and family members who served us.
Many times we give a memorial gift in honor of someone. You may have noticed plaques in churches where pews or windows were given in the memory of someone. The focus of our giving should always be to be obedient to the Lord. Yet this morning as we approach our time of offering wouldn’t it be special if our gifts were given as a memorial statement of gratitude for those who have invested so much for us? As our ushers come forward for our offering let’s give gifts that would honor those that have gone before us.
Mark Brooks- The Stewardship Coach
Founder and President, The Charis Group and Charis Giving Solutions