ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Tithes, Offerings and Stewardship Fears About Giving Money to the Church

Updated on September 30, 2018
janshares profile image

Janis spends a lot of time offering up her talents and treasures at her church in Washington, DC where she serves as Outreach Co-chair.

Offerings are Made in Collection Plates

The collection plate is passed during the worship service.
The collection plate is passed during the worship service. | Source

Stewardship Fears: What Scares Us About Giving?

Why does the word "stewardship" frighten church members so much, causing them to fidget in their seats? Usually, when the minister brings up this topic, it's inevitably about money. It immediately conjures up fears about giving more of ourselves, making a financial commitment, making sacrifices and staying on course.

In some cases, that may include making a financial pledge when the economy is unsteady, job status is no longer secure, and savings for the future are no longer guaranteed. With so much uncertainty, some church members, who are just trying to get spiritual nourishment, are anxious about whether they can live up to biblical expectations.

The following "what ifs" are realistic worries the average church member grapples with when faced with the decision to make a financial commitment to the church.

Common Fears About Financial Commitments

  • "What if I make a pledge to tithe and can't maintain it?"
  • "What if I can't keep up with my pledge and my bills?"
  • "What if I don't agree with how the money is used in the church?"
  • "What if I put off buying a new car for another year when the one I have is falling apart?"
  • "What if I can't go out to dinner as often as I like?"
  • "What if my commitment to tithe interrupts plans to finally purchase a new home?"
  • "What if I lose my job and have no salary?"
  • "What if I can't adjust to my retirement and change of lifestyle after tithing?"
  • "What if there's a family medical emergency that cause medical bills to skyrocket?"

Financial Planning Helps Us With Our Stewardship

Juggling bills and balancing finances can present difficulties for church members.
Juggling bills and balancing finances can present difficulties for church members. | Source

Church Members Struggle to Attain and Hold Onto Wealth

In addition to the fears of financial commitment church members have, there may be inner conflict and confusion about what God wants for us versus what we've been taught about working hard, saving, achieving, and attaining wealth.

We have been conditioned to strive for more, to be the best, aspire to a certain level of success, and to have something to show for it. Our success is defined by our savings account, perhaps a nest egg, or a nice home.

Realistically (although it's hard to admit), making a financial commitment to the church stands in direct conflict with our need to reach for, attain, and hold onto that success. For middle class families in particular and those who are struggling, there isn't much left over for recreation and indulgence, much less monthly maintenance.

It's extremely difficult for some to alter this type of thinking to imagine how tithing even fits into the financial equation. The question then becomes, "Do I pay my rent and car note to maintain my good credit or do I increase my financial pledge to the church?"

Stewardship: Balancing Savings and Pledges

Church members work to create wealth and maintain pledging and tithing commitments.
Church members work to create wealth and maintain pledging and tithing commitments. | Source

Church Members Still Have to Budget Expenses

Church members count their pennies to make ends meet.
Church members count their pennies to make ends meet. | Source

Making Financial Adjustments to Decrease Our Fears

The questions we ask ourselves about how to handle financial commitments can drive us crazy. So at some point we have to make the decision to "let go and let God."

We cannot allow our fears, although they are real, to prevent us from taking the necessary steps toward becoming good stewards of our time, talent, and treasure.

Obviously, adjustments have to be made so that we don't neglect our financial obligations and responsibilities. But we can all take a realistic look at the bigger picture to see what we can do to strike a better balance between our living and our giving. That means we may have to take a closer look at our spending habits, discern between wants and needs, and decide where to make adjustments by prioritizing what's most important.

An Offering is Made as a Pledge

Weekly church envelopes give structure to giving and tithing.
Weekly church envelopes give structure to giving and tithing. | Source

Parishioners of Saint George's Church, DC

Dedication of the renovation is supported by the church's building fund.
Dedication of the renovation is supported by the church's building fund. | Source

Letting Go and Letting God

The specific answer to the question about what to do is very personal and individual, as it is discerned between each church member and his or her God.

The broader answer falls somewhere in the ballpark of making God and the church a priority first, followed by being smart, realistic, and rational about making decisions that affect each church member's ability to live within a chosen lifestyle.

Establishing better money management, time management, and use of special gifts and talents will help church members to have better control over their resources.

  • Pledging and tithing is a representation of your relationship with and commitment to God and the church as it is used to run the ministries and maintain the building out of which his work is done through you.

A pledge to be good stewards in what we do, what we say, how we walk, and how we give should not scare us away from the church. We can't let our fears, conflicts, and uncertainties hinder us from relying upon our faith by, "letting go and letting God" in every decision we make in our personal lives and as members of a church community.

We Give Not Out of Fear, But in Faith, Out of Blessings Received

Philippians 4:6-7, 12-13 (Esv)

"Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Jesus Christ.

I know what it is to be in need, I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength."

Personal Stewardship

What personal resource do you give MOST to your church?

See results

© 2012 Janis Leslie Evans

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      3 years ago from Washington, DC

      Um, I think that's the sequence in some church services but not required. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to read, peachpurple.

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 

      3 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      is this the part when the church goers had to donate money before the communion?

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      5 years ago from Washington, DC

      Thank you for your comment, SwordofManticorE.

    • SwordofManticorE profile image

      SwordofManticorE 

      5 years ago from Burlington

      The simple truth about tithing is just stop. It is unbiblical. Then your finiances will increase. Mine did.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      6 years ago from Washington, DC

      You bring up excellent points, Renee. I think there are two ends of the continuum: on one end, the mega churches where money appears to be a huge focus, and on the other end, the struggling churches where, unfortunately, money IS a huge focus. I think the middle ground is the church with enough members whose consistent financial support take care of the physical building and run the ministries that are most needed to do God's work. It's a difficult balance to strike when you factor in life's ups and downs, change, transition, comings and goings, etc. Thank you for stopping by and for the comment.

    • ReneeDC1979 profile image

      Renee' D. Campbell 

      6 years ago from Gaithersburg, Maryland

      Hey sis,

      I was just talking about this especially about the news of losing your leadership. I agree stewardship automatically carries the question of finances. I think a lot of people get caught up in the thinking of God will not be pleased because I don't pledge the same amount as "The Joneses." I think we lose sight of our faith, our commitment, and our relationship with God that we forget that our walk as faithful stewards is not about comparing our time, talent and treasure, but about using what we have and coming together to build our faith together. Do you think money has taken over the church as a whole?

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      6 years ago from Washington, DC

      So true. Thank you, for stopping by and commenting, Nyamache. I appreciate it.

    • Nyamache profile image

      Joshua Nyamache 

      6 years ago from Kenya

      There is that fear that people experience especially tithing the 10%. They think it will affect their savings forgetting that it is God who enables them to be alive. We should not be afraid to do God’s work.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 

      6 years ago from San Francisco

      Good Hub, thank you.Our problem was membership, We had so few members we were facing closure. It took 7 years and relooking toward the future and some highly motivated members to face a facility that is too small.

    • janshares profile imageAUTHOR

      Janis Leslie Evans 

      6 years ago from Washington, DC

      Thank you, Faith Reaper, for stopping by and liking this hub. You are so right about whose in control. I'm grateful for your vote up and comments. Bless you, too :-)

    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      6 years ago from southern USA

      Very insightful hub dear one! All very real points stated here. Yes, it is always best to let go and let God be in control, as He is anyway, as He knows your heart and would not want you to be troubled and not come to worship Him and praise Him. Voted up, awesome, interesting and useful

      God bless. In His Love, Faith Reaper

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)