Stewardship in the Local Church
Recently I had been asked to speak to two churches on stewardship. One was a very millennial church in Southern California that is 9 years old and the other a denominational community church with a long history in Pacific NW, but with new young pastors. One church is filled with young Christians under 40, and the other filled with life-long Christians over 40.
It was interesting to teach, share, and listen to responses. Each has a unique set of church attenders, and therefore the understanding of, and communication strategies of stewardship were different. Yet the message of stewardship as a part of our walk with Jesus was met with agreement, importance, and even a bit of excitement.
Here are few of my observations that should apply whether you are working in a church or a parachurch ministry:
- The message of stewardship is a biblical mandate.
- The young pastors are very concerned about teaching stewardship rather than fundraising.
- Both churches want to teach holistic stewardship, but have audiences that hear very different things on this approach.
- While believing God is our source, their "flocks" still live in the world's economy.
- The younger pastors taught biblical stewardship, yet were frustrated that giving went up when they taught from the pulpit, and down when they did not.
- The key belief that stewardship is about our relationship with Jesus Christ is welcomed by all.
These are just a few observations. It was a great few days of being with people who really want to know what God is telling them about being a steward. They as pastors and leaders are catching the vision for teaching holistic stewardship as part of discipleship rather than about church budgets.
God is at work in his people and his church. If anyone reading this needs more information on teaching stewardship I would be happy to share any resources I have. For now, here are a few to check out:
- Jay Link www.StewardshipMinistries.org
- Gary Hoag www.GenerosityMonk.org
- Brian Kluth www.Kluth.org
I will list new resources as they become available. Let me know if you have others you want listed.
Blessings to you as you teach and live the lifestyle of a steward!