I’ve heard a similar statement from two different places recently. In a book called Stop This, Start That and from a seminar with Elmer Towns. The general sentiment was that the best time to preach about money is when the people need it, not when the budget needs it.
The church often talks about money during campaigns, during the fall budget renewals, or at the end of the year. Each of those times are focused on the need for money for a particular project or ministry season. What if we preached about a Godly perspective of money when people need to hear it? Here are a couple of examples of when the average church member may be more receptive to money issues in life:
1) Just after the New Year begins is often a good time to help people get a grip on their debt, their giving and their saving.
2) Sometime in the summer might be a good time to help people think about how they will get into better habits as the fall begins.
Preach to help people focus on their faith in God and allow money to be a witness of that faith. Help them understand what the Bible says about tithing. Help them understand that we either serve God or money, not both. Teach what it does for the soul to give sacrificially – so that we are not bound up by the chains of putting our trust in earthly treasure that can be so easily stolen, ruined or lost. Help people learn what the Bible says about planning and saving. Give people a vision of what it means to live within your means. Give examples of what generosity does in the hearts of the giver and the receiver.
And if we teach this during a time when we’re more focused on growing faithful people than meeting the financial obligations of the church, three things will happen. 1) You will see an increase in your confidence level as you are teaching, 2) You will notice more receptivity from the congregation and 3) When it comes time for the budget issues, they will, in many ways, have already taken care of themselves.
The church needs to be continually taught what it means to be givers. But in order for that to happen, they must incorporate habits of faithfulness in every day life. When is the next time you are preaching on money issues?