When you decide to step out of financial stress and get on the ladder toward financial peace, make sure you give your initial gift in a way that is identifiable and by which you can be held accountable. That means, first of all, that when you give your gift to your local church, do it through whatever offering system the church has in place. If your church provides offering envelopes, make sure you give using an offering envelope. Or maybe you can give in a way that lets the church leaders know you gave.
People sometimes question this by bringing up Jesus’s words in Matthew 6: “Watch out! Don’t do your good deeds publicly, to be admired by others, for you will lose the reward from your Father in heaven…Give your gift in private, and your Father, who sees everything, will reward you” (vv. 1, 4).
Too many people think this passage means they should give without any kind of acknowledgement. But that’s an incorrect interpretation. In reality, it means you shouldn’t brag about the fact that you gave or disclose the dollar amount of your gift to your friends and relatives. In no way does it mean your church leaders shouldn’t know.
When you give your gift to your local church, do it through whatever offering system the church has in place.
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Scripture goes on to tell us that those who have been appointed leaders within the church should know that people are giving back to God. In fact, Mark recounts the story of Jesus sitting by the collection box in the temple, watching as people brought their gifts (Mark 12:41). In the book of Acts, givers actually brought their gifts to the church and laid them at the pastor’s feet (Acts 4:34-45 NIV). Aren’t you glad we don’t have to do that today?
Even though we have moved away from ancient methods of giving to more modern options like envelopes, online giving, and bank auto-debit, the principle remains the same. You must give your gift in a way that is identifiable to your church leaders. Why? So that they will be able to hold you accountable for your giving–not so they can lord it over you but so they can report back to you on what you’ve given and how it is being used.
You must give your gift in a way that is identifiable to your church leaders.
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–Nelson Searcy and Jennifer Dykes Henson
The above excerpt is from pgs. 49-51 of The Generosity Ladder: Your Next Step to Financial Peace.
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