Last Update 8th October, 2016.
What would your church look like if you had more money for ministry?
How many more opportunities could you take advantage of?
Think of the bigger impact you could make, think of how many more lives you could reach.
The purpose of this post is to make available tools, resources and techniques you can use to encourage your people to tithe and motivate them to give more generously.
For an excellent resource designed to equip you to take your church finances to the next level check out the Giving Rocket Core Coaching.
Put together by my friends at The Rocket Company, Giving Rocket will help you to receive a healthy, consistent offering each week so you can plan for ministry.
Something’s wrong when American Christians are only giving on average 2-3% to the church each year. A lack of tithing limits our ministry possibilities and hinders the gospel getting out into the nations.
A generous, tithing church is a powerful one. Not simply because of God’s blessing being released and poured out in the lives of your people, but more money in the offering basket means more lives changed. Really that’s what it comes down to.
In order to lead a generous church you need to encourage people to tithe and create a culture of giving.
And though there’s no shortcut or silver bullet to tripling your church’s income overnight, there are things you can do as a pastor with your leadership team that help foster and create a culture of giving.
It won’t happen automatically but it’s also not an insurmountable task either – it can be achieved. It is the result of a handful of small practices and processes done consistently over time and done well.
[bctt tweet=”God’s plan has always been to finance His work through the tithes and offerings of His people.”]
So for today, let’s take a look at 7 simple, yet effective ways you can encourage the people in your church to tithe.
Taken individually, these steps can begin impacting your church’s giving as soon as next week. Taken together, you can dramatically redirect the financial direction of your church in the months and years ahead.
1. Model sacrificial giving
Encourage people to tithe by modelling sacrificial giving yourself. Be a shining example and be generous with your time and money.
People will see this and follow your lead.
Years ago, I decided to be a giver. It’s a fundamental decision that changed the way I live. As a missionary in a third world country you could say I’ve given a lot up already. It would be easy for me to stay in a receiving mentality but I refuse.
I made a commitment to give more finances, to meet more needs, to send more teams and be a blessing to those around me. Only then am I comfortable challenging others to give more.
2. Talk about money
Encourage people to tithe by teaching and preaching what God’s Word says about tithing.
Here are 21 Bible verses about giving.
While some debate whether the New Testament teaches a tithe (10%), it is clear God expects believers to give cheerfully (2 Cor. 9:7), regularly (1 Cor. 16:2), and sacrificially (Mark 12:41-44).
If we don’t teach this mandate intentionally and passionately, we should not be surprised when our congregations don’t give.
And don’t just talk about tithing either – I’m guessing many people within the vicinity of your local church are struggling with the consequences of poor financial decisions.
The Bible is full of wisdom and guidance about money and healthy financial stewardship – teach about saving, budgeting, debt, spending habits, and money management.
Fear of teaching about financial stewardship results only in a greater need to teach about it later.
God’s people will give more to His work if we help them first learn to budget and spend well.
Pastor John Maxwell has taught sound Biblical stewardship principles at hundreds of pastors’ and leaders’ conferences.
He says that teaching a sermon series about money is the single most important thing he does each year to encourage his people to tithe and improve their spiritual and financial lives.
Be sure to try and use real-life illustrations in your sermons. Tell people how the Lord has creatively provided for you and others you know who faithfully honoured the Lord in their tithe. When you teach from the head it goes to the head, but when you teach from a life it goes to a life.
3. Encourage people to tithe by casting a clear, succinct and powerful vision
God’s people are far more willing to tithe for a clear and God-sized purpose. Churches that try to encourage people to tithe just so that they can keep their doors open to the regular few aren’t likely to increase their financial budget through a small or unclear vision.
Making your church vision succinct means it’s easy to remember. Ask your congregation to state your church’s vision in a single sentence; if most can’t do it, I suspect you’re missing out on financial support as well.
4. Lead your church to drip with financial integrity
Encourage people in your church to tithe by thanking them for giving and by showing them what their tithes are accomplishing.
You can do this by giving regular financial updates.
Your congregation are your biggest donors – they deserve to know what’s happening with their donations.
Review your church’s processes and systems for receiving tithes and offerings and distributing funds. Who counts and deposits the funds? How are the records handled? How are expenditures approved? How many people sign cheques? Are the books audited annually?
The work we do is God’s work, and anything less than absolute integrity will lack His blessing.
Put Biblical reasons “why to give” to the Lord on the bottom or back of your giving records.
Some churches send out quarterly giving record reports to their congregations with a financial newsletter.
Encourage your congregation concerning the the value and importance of their faithful giving.
For helpful articles, reports, and samples check out The Church Systems Bundle.
[bctt tweet=”That which gets rewarded gets repeated. Andy Stanley”]
Churches who regularly communicate with their congregations about budgets and ministry expenses have more people tithing than those that don’t.
Encourage people to tithe by using the key factors such as “transparency” and “knowing where my money goes”.
Celebrate your spending!
You’re using your budget to reach out to the unchurched and minister to your members. Why not share those details with the same members who made that work possible?
Try it for six months and see what a difference it makes!
5. Tell stories of changed lives
Just as people are encouraged to tithe by vision rather than need, more people will tithe in your church through stories rather than statistics.
While it’s important to share financial information, don’t stop there – personalise it. Put faces and names to their financial giving.
Is there a family in your community that your church was able to support during a difficult season?
Tell your givers!
Is there a couple in your congregation who was burdened by financial fear and stress until they discovered the life-giving power of the tithing principle?
Share the good news!
These stories make generosity personal and powerful. It doesn’t matter if you convey these stories via video, email or Q&A before the offering. Just get the word out!
If you want your church people to tithe more, show them what God is doing through the church. Plan testimonies in the services. Invite missionaries to speak. Highlight a different church ministry each month.
Nothing encourages people to tithe more than transformed lives.
That’s why we do what we do right?
6. Automate giving in your church
An interesting Church Giving Survey was conducted with over 1,000 churches revealed that only 14% of churches are exceeding their budget.
Of these 14% of churches, ‘the ability to receive automatic donations‘ was listed as the single most significant factor in encouraging people to tithe.
With the best of intentions, sometimes we can simply forget to give.
Members are able to ensure that illness, travel, cancelled services or forgetfulness will not come between them and their gift to your church.
When tithes and offerings are automated, it is consistent and reliable.
It’s win-win – it’s convenient for your tithers and your finance teams can start to predict in advance what their monthly giving will look like, making ministry planning much easier.
If you don’t already have an automated way to give see here.
7. Thank your tithers
This is the simplest way to encourage your people to tithe and yet it’s often the most overlooked. What better way to encourage a person toward a life of faithful financial stewardship than a simple and sincere “Thank you”?
Don’t just feel grateful – express it by saying thanks.
We say it all the time; for someone holding a door, for a plate of food received, for a compliment, but sadly this phrase seems almost non-existent in our church’s giving. Gratitude is often a trigger of even greater generosity.
This is more than a general “Thanks” from the pulpit.
If people are faithfully and regularly tithing into the church ministry then thank them personally.
Send hand-written notes, especially true with individuals who are giving to your church for the first time.
Check out the Giving Rocket Core Coaching from Andy Stanley’s to learn more about encouraging people to tithe, increasing your ministry finances.
What have you done in your church to encourage people to tithe?Leave your comments below.