This last week of the year wise leaders end the old year by thinking and planning the New Year. This is especially true when it comes to planning for any increase in giving. A key factor for everyone in the church to realize is that giving is on a constant decline. Nationally 2015 is projected to be another year of giving decline for the church. While that might concern us your real concern is your church. My question to you is what are you doing now to avert a giving crisis later in the year? Wise leaders plan in advance. The way to avoid a budget melt down in June is to make plans now to avoid that.
1%. That is what Americans will give to the church from their disposable incomes in the year 2050 if giving continues on its present decline. Yet amazingly most churches are oblivious to this declining trend. We are literally rearranging the chairs on the Titanic ignoring the gaping hole in our vessel. The lack of awareness of the giving decline is one key reason why few churches do anything to avert this.
“All the church ever talks about is money!” We hear that all the time yet statistically studies have proven that it is incorrect. Most of the time what I hear is, “It is time for our offering today. For those of you who are guests please don’t feel like you have to give.” We think that downplaying the offering makes guest feel more comfortable. Really? When was the last time the Red Cross apologized for asking for money? When did they ever get blamed for talking too much about money? If you talk about what you do with money in terms of making a difference people will never complain that you talk about money!
To be successful in anything you have to plan and this is especially true when it comes to giving! When it comes to giving I find that few churches if any make plans to address giving. Giving is an afterthought. For instance let me ask you, how much time went into planning out the offering this past Sunday? Your response to that question tells me a lot. Most spend no time thinking about how to make the offering strategic or impactful. Then we wonder in June why we are behind budget.
So, we know from data that giving is in decline. We know that seeing increases or even making your current budget is going to take work. Why not plan now to avoid a crisis later? Most pastors and staff simply do not know what to do. It is true that our seminaries did not teach us the basics we need to know. How do you make the “ask?” How do you take up an effective offering? How do you plan for giving increases? How do you connect with each generation? How do you raise funds for projects? AND, when do you find time for all of that?
Let me help you. A year ago I started The Stewardship Coach. I give weekly help to pastors, staff and lay leaders on giving. My plans will help you avert a giving crisis in June. You need to act now however.
My goal in life is to reverse the decline in giving one church at a time! Let’s start with your church.
Mark Brooks – The Stewardship Coach
Founder and President
The Charis Group and Charis Giving Solutions
Ready to start with a giving plan now? Enroll now in my monthly membership by going here http://thestewardshipcoach.org/join-now/