Cultivating Contagious Generosity
I was worshiping with friends recently and, in the remarks before the offering, the pastor declared, “We celebrate generosity and the work God does through our sacrificial giving!” That got me to thinking about the beliefs and values reflected in that congregation.
They routinely celebrate the ways God is moving through their Christian community and neighborhood. Every Sunday I have been in worship there, the atmosphere is electric. People are expectant. God shows up in a word that is spoken, or in a song that is sung, in a time of prayer, or in a video that is shared. That church creatively shares the good news of what God is doing among them, and how persons are blessed through the investments of time, energy, and money they pour into their congregation. They understand it is the generosity of the faith community investing themselves wholeheartedly in the vision that sustains the ministry and mission of their church.
People of all ages want to be a part of making a difference in people’s lives, in transforming a community. They want to give of their time and resources to support a vision that is making a tangible impact. Making an impact is contagious; people tell their friends. Prayerfully reflect on the stories of the difference-making and lives being changed through your church’s ministry.
Look for ways in worship and in your communication channels to share your vision and what God is doing in your church, rather than focusing on what is not happening, or worse, what the congregation “needs” in the way of finances. Tell life-change stories every week, ideally through first person testimonies, live or on video, of how God is changing lives and making a difference through your congregation. Cycle the stories through your website and social media. God is up to something in your congregation. Let people know about it!