Starting the Money Conversation
- February 10, 2016
- Nathan Ealy
In the last blog I recounted the time I heard a curse word in church. It was an interesting experience but made me think more about how many churchgoers equate talking about money with saying a bad word.
Hopefully the message is clear that we should be having these conversations in church, but the question is how? Do we all of a sudden start having church business meetings or should the pastor tell what he’s giving next Sunday? In a word, no. I have met pastors with good intentions who wanted to jump in with both feet on the money subject and the members were shocked! The key is to slowly and deliberately begin the discussions.
I have a group of friends that are very special to me. The four of us deem ourselves “Team San Diego” because I was married there and they were all in my wedding. We are now scattered across the country, but talk daily on an app called “Hey-Tell”(It’s great, check it out), and share everything going on in our lives.
Just like in church though we didn’t start talking the day we all met about how much money we made or what our bank accounts looked like. It started slowly; I went through a period of time when changing jobs and money was scarce. Another friend sacrificed his career for his wife’s because it would help them financially in the long run. The third changed jobs because of needing to provide for his new family. Fortunately now we’re talking about more fun financial issues like new contracts for those who sell, a nice bonus for a financial planner, potential new salaries for one looking for a new opportunity. And we don’t bat an eye; it’s just what we do.
That’s how it should happen in our churches. Have a respected member speak about how he or she learned to give and how faith has grown through giving. Let the pastor or finance chair celebrate how many new givers have gotten on board this year. Show the number of families who grew their giving year over year and thank the congregation for their generosity. It may seem awkward at first, but over time it will be just my San Diego guys, another conversation about life.