There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded toward your brothers and toward the poor and needy in your land.
I just learned of a surprise "Random Act of Culture" that occurred last weekend, Oct. 30 at Macy's in Philadelphia. A project of the Knight Foundation, they are offering 1000 random acts of culture over the next three years around the United States. The act at Macy's involved the Opera Company of Philadelphia, secretly posing as shoppers when suddenly, accompanied by the world's largest pipe organ, all 600 singers burst into the Hallelujah Chorus. You have to watch this video:
What a great act of generosity! Can you imagine the sound, surrounded by 600 professional vocalists accompanied by that massive pipe organ? Isn't it fun to give when people least expect it? I love this!! That Christ was exalted in this way is amazing.
As I watched the video, I was struck by another thought: isn't this exactly the way Christ's return on earth will occur? When we least expect it, going about our daily routine, suddenly there will be a sound unlike any we have ever heard. I can't wait! Can you? Are you ready?
What is the number one reason given by donors for why they choose to support a particular non-profit? There are over two dozen reasons why people choose to give. But the number one reason is a belief in the mission or cause of the organization. They align themselves with what you are doing, they identify with you, and they want to invest in the mission. They are moved to support what you are about.
What is your ministry mission - your mandate? The answer to the question: "What are we doing?"
I am not speaking of the great commission here, which is commonly the answer I hear when asking this question. That should be the calling of every church. But beyond that, how has God specifically called your church to accomplish what is uniquely your calling? What makes you different from the church down the street? From all the other churches in town? If your church was gone tomorrow, vanished, would anyone notice?
You may need to work on Mission depending upon your evaluation of these key thoughts: Read more »
“People no longer give to the church simply because it is the church. The church must prove it is worthy of donations.” George Barna
This quote from Barna and the following statistics should sound an alarm. More than ever, you and your church are competing for charitable contributions. And the church is losing.
Facts you need to know:
- From 1985 – 2009, the total percentage of all charitable dollars that went to religious causes fell from 53% to 33%. Read more »
The Chronicle of Philanthropy recently published interesting insights into Generation Y: People in their 20’s. Encompassing data from multiple sources, the snapshot provides intriguing insight into the preferences and attitudes of millenials.
93% say they prefer to receive updates from charities via email
- 37% joined a charity’s online social network in the past month
- 29% made their donations online in the past two years
- 83% slept with their cellphones on or near their beds
- 20 is the median number of text messages sent in a 24-hour period
- 21% say helping others is one of their biggest priorities
- $341 is the average amount members of Generation Y donate annually
- 3.6 is the average number of groups they choose to support with donations
There are a number of potential articles coming out of this list, aren’t there? This time though, let’s focus on communication – not the message itself, but how it is delivered. Read more »
I was reminded this week how blessed I am to have the opportunity to do the work that I do. I get to partner with churches and faith-based non-profit ministries who are engaging in God-inspired journeys to fund ministry, missions, projects, building expansions, renovations and debt retirement.
In a client meeting this week, the pastor stood before his leadership team to encourage their participation in a new journey upon which they were about to embark. Within his comments, a wonderful description of God's idea, His vision, passed down to the pastor and staff as a vision for their future ministry.The pastor shared that the vision as birthed in God's mind exists there in a perfect environment - absolutely pristine. There is no pollution to cloud the idea, no doubt, no fear of failure, no "what if?", "can we?", "yes, but", "you're crazy!", "in this economy?". Read more »