It’s Good Friday in the Western Church, so I thought I’d spotlight the friends that need our support the most: our local churches.
Your local churches will obviously be quite different than mine, but I would encourage every Christian reader to give to your local church this weekend. If you are not tithing to a church already, start doing so! Only 5% of churchgoers tithe, but American Christians earn $5.2 trillion annually. Imagine the transformative impact if every Christian gave ten percent. That could feed, clothe, and shelter a lot of people. It would also be an incredible witness to Christians’ commitment to their faith.
Once you start tithing, you don’t miss it. There are plenty of other things we give money to monthly without batting an eye.
Granted, not all churches are good stewards. Use discretion. I recommend including an allocation note for tithes if there is some particular aspect of the church you want to support. For example, for years I dedicated my tithes to paying off my church’s passenger van, because I did not want my church carrying any debt.
One time I allocated $10 of my tithes to take a friend of mine who worked at another church to lunch. Her boss—the choir director of the church—took her to lunch. That is the Christian equivalent of Van Halen’s “no brown M&Ms” rider—it was an easy test to make sure the church was doing as I instructed with the money (and I wanted to delight my friend).
Some Christians might argue we shouldn’t be so nit-picky with God’s money; I’d counter that I trust God, but I don’t always trust His followers.
That said, I do trust my church, Southside Free Will Baptist. It is a small church—we have forty on a typical Sunday morning (sixty if we serve lunch after service)—but the church is a good steward, and uses its resources well.
If you’d like to make a donation to my local church, you can do so here (make the check to “Southside Free Will Baptist Church”):
Southside Free Will Baptist Church
P.O. Box 5
Darlington, SC 29540
Just be sure to tell the pastor to take the pianist to lunch. ; D