When people love their jobs, they pay for it.
I could go on and on about service-based professions and the sacrificial giving that goes on behind the scenes.
What happens when a school budget gets cut, but nothing changes otherwise?
When I was a 5th grade public school teacher, I saw time and time again where teachers would pay for supplies out of their own pocket, and teachers providing for students, who would’ve otherwise gone without. These teachers love their job.
We’ve seen stories about police officers who have taken care of families in need whom they have encountered while on the job. These officers love their job.
What happens when a church budget gets cut, because people are not giving back to God, but nothing changes otherwise?
For example, if a church budget is cut, but things continue as planned, where do the funds come from?
Where do the materials come from?
Who pays the electric bill?
Who buys the toilet paper?
Who buys the snack for the children?
Who buys the construction paper?
The ministers, that’s who.
These people have such a heart for the people they serve, that they are not going to stop providing. These ministers love their job.
There are voices that say to these ministers, just stop buying. Stop paying out of your own pocket. Let people see what happens when hearts have grown cold to giving back, when hearts do not see what giving back to God really means.
You want to know what their response is?
“I can’t. I can’t do that to the children, to the youth, to the students, to the adults, to the choir, etc. Plus, people say all the time that ministers are paid too much, so it wouldn’t bother anyone that we’re paying for this stuff anyway.”
Please note that this is happening everywhere. And it’s been happening for years, upon years, upon years. This is not a new problem. This is not just happening in one or two churches, it’s happening in churches everywhere.
If you attend a local church, the next time you step in the doors, take a moment to stop and look around.
If your church has glass doors, think about the glass cleaner that is purchased to keep them clean.
If there is a door mat under your feet, who vacuums it? A volunteer? A paid janitor?
If you feel the refreshing blast of cool air, once you step inside, who pays the electric bill?
Or, if it is cold where you are, and if you feel the warmth once you step in, taking the cool chill off, who pays to have the units serviced when they break?
When you go into a Bible study class, who paid for the learner book you may be holding?
When you step into the restroom, are the toilets clean? If so, thank God for the cleaner that was purchased to make them that way.
Is there toilet paper?….give thanks again! Seriously. Stop and give thanks here!
What about the soap? The paper towels or air-dry unit, so you can leave with dry hands?
If you have children, are they engaged in tactile learning that will hold their attention? Do they have access to markers, crayons, construction paper, glue, scissors, etc?
Listen to the music….where did those instruments come from? Did they just show up one day?
Smell the coffee that may be brewing….who provided it?
Does your local church have a playground where children can let off some energy? If so, aren’t you so very glad there is mulch to help break falls? Who paid for that?
Are there pens around, so if you need to write a thought down that you want to remember, do you have access to one?
I don’t know what your local church has or doesn’t have, this is just a list to get thoughts moving.
If you read this, and your response is, “I give $X every month to my church, so I’m doing my part”, you have completely missed the point. Completely. As in, the point is way over there, and you have completely missed it. By a mile.
That’s the wrong response. It is NEVER about the dollar amount. It is ALWAYS about the heart.
If you read this, and your response is, “I am giving what God has led me and my family to give, but perhaps, I could pray about giving more”, then right on, sister or brother.
Giving is between you and God. Giving is putting your faith into action. Giving is a form of worship for me. It is my way of thanking, showing appreciation, for what God has given my family, and I acknowledge this in giving back to God what He has already given to me.
I heard it said once that giving is: God giving you some warm, perfectly salted french fries, and He just wants a few back.
Give God back some fries, people.
That’s what He wants–for you to do this simple act to acknowledge whose fries they are anyways.
Fries…dollars….you get the point.
I have lots of minister friends, since so many people I know have followed God into ministry. I have minister friends all over the country. And my heart breaks. As I said earlier, this is not just a one church, or a two church problem, this is happening everywhere. I am watching my minister friends give, and give, and give, and you know what? They are going to keep giving, because you cannot out give God. It is my prayer that hearts in their congregations are changed–if only just to relieve some of their burden for a while.
Also? It’s my prayer that people will experience what absolutely amazing things happen when one sacrificially gives back to God.
I could tell you story, after story, after story, filled with examples of what happens in a life when one begins to give sacrificially back to God, but the BEST story is your own.
If God is pinging your heart about giving back to Him, run, don’t walk, to your local church and give back what God has laid on your heart.
I have yet to encounter a person that has regretted giving back to God, have you?