Quick Guide to Giving
Everything we have is God’s in the first place.
We are given everything in trust and are to be wise in using it for God, this includes our time, talents, skills, gifts and money. (Psalm 24:1-3, 1Chronicles 29:11-12)
Money is not evil, only the love or obsession with it.
God has more than enough resources for his people’s needs. We are to live free from addiction to money. Giving to God’s work is a key discipline in learning freedom from money’s grasp. (1Timonty 6:10)
We are called to find and live out ‘contentment’.
It is not more holy to be either very rich or very poor. Rather we are to give as much as we can with a contented heart. (Hebrews 13:5)
Our giving is to be a reflection of God’s giving of love to us.
God gives everything in Jesus and our giving is called to reflect that sacrificial generosity. Giving is about right when it costs us something sacrificially (like the widow in Jesus’ story in Luke 21:1-4). People often try and suggest a particular percentage as being right. For many years people thought the tithe or 10% is what we should give. However, God is more interested in what we give from a sacrificial, joyful and contented heart. Some of us might be able to manage 1%, others should be giving 30%! It all depends on our circumstances as we must be wise. Everyone can give something and most people find they can do more than they might first think.
God loves giving which is done (a) in secret and (b) with joy!
Christians should neither trumpet their giving from the rooftops, nor begrudgingly let people know how lucky they are to get anything! In our church no one (other than the treasurer) knows who gives what and we want to encourage joy. (2Corinthians 9:7)
We are called to support both the mission of St Erkenwald’s and also churches and ministries related to us.
The apostle Paul spent lots of time raising money for poor sister churches as well as seeking support for his own mission initiatives. As he pointed out, we need to be generous in good times so that when we are in need of help, others are happy to offer it to us. (2Corinthians 8:1-12)
We reap what we sow.
God does not say that if we give everything away he will make us rich, but he does make it clear that if we invest in the work of the gospel, God will bring a great return in every way. (2 Corinthians 9:6)