For a church ministry to grow and fulfill its mission requires consistent giving from the congregation. Church budgets are full of line items from salaries, mission efforts, ministry needs, and more. It is certainly the job of the pastor to preach on the subject of tithing from time to time as well as sharing the needs of the church with the membership to ensure financial goals are met. So, what is a pastor’s role outside of preaching?
Giving in a church should be extremely confidential which includes the pastor not knowing what individual members give unless they choose to share with the pastor themselves. The pastor however should be practicing what is preached and leading by example. As a general rule the pastor should never ask a member to do something that he is not willing to do. This is especially true when it comes to giving. The Bible says that God loves a cheerful giver and the pastor must take the lead in all areas of the church, including good stewardship in giving.
Most conservative churches hold to a 10% tithe according to the Bible. Personal conviction should lead each individual member in what they give, but one thing is for certain; you cannot out-give God. He is the owner of all! He gave His Son Jesus to us and the pastor should model this spirit of giving in all aspects of life including the tithe.
A pastor who truly gives can expect to reap the rewards of this behavior in several ways.
1) Pastors can be incredible fundraisers by modeling before their people a spirit of sacrifice. People want to follow and support a leader who lays it all out on the line.
2) Church members see the heart of the pastor after a short period of time on the job. They see the tireless effort and all that the pastor is doing to serve the Lord at the church. This is a motivational tool that hopefully inspires others to follow suit and give their time and resources too.
3) Pastors are often not paid the highest salaries for their profession. Church giving is an act of faith that is showing others and God that you truly do trust Him. In the Bible, you see over and over the theme of extreme faith followed by blessing. A pastor that lives by faith when it comes to stewardship can expect that God is going to take care of His family through the good and tough times.
Churches take on the personality of the pastor in so many ways, which includes giving. Hopefully that will translate into increased levels of giving year after year. Tithing is ultimately about being faithful to God and less about the amount. The story of the widow’s mite in Luke 21 is powerful story for all to know about the attitude of the heart and living out your faith.
How does your pastor inspire your congregation to give back?