Teaching tithing in church can prove to be a challenge. At Generis we want to normalize that conversation. I started a short series called 3 steps to teaching tithing and I would encourage you to read the initial post , Evaluate post and Formulate post.
The final step in the process is to educate your people on your church’s stance on tithing. This is when it get can get scary, difficult, challenging, etc. It is one thing to sit behind closed doors with your close friends and advisers and talk about how important it is for our church to have a clear stance on tithing. It is also fairly easy to sit in a staff meeting and formulate a plan to implement a clear communication strategy surrounding tithing. Your staff comes up with plans for big initiatives all the time right?
However, many churches find launching this type of initiative to be more challenging than most. Here are some things to expect when you begin to educate your congregation on your church’s stance on tithing:
- Attacks from the enemy. You have now crossed lines; enemy lines. Deception surrounding giving back to God is one of the top weapons the enemy uses against us. Pastors are on the front lines so who do you think the enemy is going to attack first?
- Push back from the congregation. Once again, you have crossed lines. “Pastor, it is ok to talk to me about sin, heaven, hell, forgiveness, adultery and even sex. But you have gone too far trying to tell me about tithing and that I should be giving back to God. You have gone to meddling.” These types of comments will not only come from people who are ‘sort of’ involved at the church. Some of your 20% will bark. In the words of one of my colleagues “A hit dog hollers.”
- Questions. If you have not spent much time in the past discussing tithing and generosity you will receive questions once you begin the discussion. Some will be quite simple; “Why are we talking about money now? We never have before.” “Where did this emphasis come from? What is the genesis of it?” “Are we getting ready to have a capital campaign?” Unfortunately some of the other questions could be on the negative side. (See the previous bullet point)
- Departures. Yep. Some people will leave your church seeking a church with a pastor that “doesn’t talk about money all the time.” Guess what? They will find that church.
- Increased immediate giving. Yep. Giving will go up; probably that Sunday. If not that Sunday, definitely on the second Sunday. Why? Because you are sharing biblical truths. Christians respond to biblical truths.
- Increased sustained giving. If you will work the entire plan you and your leaders formulated you will see giving increase and remain at higher levels. “Will giving continue to rise?” Yes, as long as you work the plan.
- Spiritual growth. You will grow closer to God and so will your people. That’s a good thing right?
- Financial freedom. If you will ‘normalize the conversation about generosity’ your church will eventually be free of the shackles that often prohibit churches from achieving their God-inspired vision.
Would you like to achieve ALL of the aspects of the God-inspired vision for the church you serve? Implement the plan.
I will ask the question one more time. Am I over simplifying this? Apparently all of the readers either agree with everything I say or think I have lost my mind. I’d love to hear from you.