3 Ways to Build A Culture of Generosity in Your Church

by Rev. Bill Gruenewald

In their book “Contagious Generosity,” Chris Willard and Jim Sheppard write, “Generosity is at its core is a lifestyle, a lifestyle in which we share all that we have, are, and ever will become as a demonstration of God’s love and a response to God’s grace.” 

We serve a gracious and generous God. It should be only natural that every Christian would have an attitude of generosity in all areas of life. Unfortunately, though, this topic is not often talked about in our churches. So how can church leaders help bring about a culture of generosity in their church? 

We believe there are three primary ways to help a congregation cultivate generosity in the church:

1. TEACH IT

As Baptists, teaching is important in the life of our church, and it’s the main focus of Sunday school or Bible study. It is a part of our DNA; it helps us understand God’s Word and apply it to our daily lives. With more than 2000 verses dealing with money and finances, we need to teach what God’s Word says, so we can make life changes in how we handle money. This will allow us to become better stewards and give us the freedom to be more generous with the material blessings God has given each one of us.

2. TELL IT

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. I believe a story is better than 100 sermons! Stories come from our life experience, and when we share them, we encourage others in a more memorable, impactful way. We need to have members share their stories to show the impact of how generosity is making a Kingdom impact as well as how they have been blessed to be the instrument of God’s love and grace. Sharing stories gives other members an opportunity to relate and be inspired toward growth in their own lives.

3. PRAISE IT

As a church, we do not say “thank you” as often as we should. In fact, many secular nonprofits do a better job at donor relations than the church. We need to cultivate gratitude in addition to generosity. Sending notes, emails, and even—when warranted—a public expression of gratitude will foster more generosity in your congregation. In an age where value is often defined by “what’s in it for me?”, gratitude is one of the greatest spiritual characteristics leadership can model for our members.

Willard and Sheppard go on to write:

“Generosity, when motivated by genuine love for God, is contagious, drawing others to wonder why people would give of themselves while expecting nothing in return. In fact, a life and a church community that is characterized by generosity may be the most compelling, effective evangelism strategy we have as followers of Christ.”

That is the type of lifestyle that needs to be encouraged within all our Tennessee Baptist congregations. The TBF would like to work with you to build this type of generosity in your church through our Legacy Ministry program. Give us a call today at 615-371-2029. We are here to help.

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Please note that the advice offered in this article is not intended to be construed as tax, legal or accounting advice. This material has been prepared for general informational purposes only and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice for the reader. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any transaction.