Your church has a better chance of making budget this year if you will use these four easy ways to improve your offering.  With giving to the church declining we need to take seriously our approach to the offering.  The following four steps will help.

First, Pass the plate!  If you are not passing some plate, bucket, basket or other means by which people can put money in you are losing funds.  One recent study found that churches that don’t pass the plate raise on average 15% less than churches that do pass the plate.

I find it interesting that one of the most contemporary churches in America, North Point Community in Atlanta, passes offering buckets.  They have done this since their beginning and have grown to now be the second largest church in America.  They still attract Seekers even though they pass the plate.  So, pass the plate and you will increase your offerings over night.  Passing the plate is one way to make giving easy and it will increase the amount you receive.

Second, Preparation is the key to success.  Why is it that we understand this in so many other areas of Christian ministry but fail to apply this when it comes to the offering.  Here is a test, how much time last week did you spend thinking and planning the offering?  Most if they are honest will have to say very little or none.  Could it be that our thoughtless approach to the offering is one reason giving continually declines?  This week spend some time thinking about how you can improve the offering time during your services.

Third, Position the offering for success.  I am not simply talking about where in the service the offering is taken up.  While that is important what I mean is what you say leading up to the collection.  Most churches simply call the ushers forward and then pray.  You should consider using sixty to ninety seconds to focus in on why giving is important and why it matters.

I write weekly offering talks for my members!  So every week they have something positive to say that creates a desire to give.  My goal is to help those in attendance see that a dollar given at church helps change the world.  I call that connecting the dots.  Show people what you do with the money you collect and they will be much more likely to give you money.

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Fourth, Prayer is the fount through which dollars flow.  Do you spend time praying for the offering?  I don’t mean the thirty seconds we pray before we pass the plate.  I mean how much time during the week do you pray that the offering will meet the needs of your ministry?  Why is it that our most powerful tool as believers is seldom used with regards to seeing our giving increase?  You should be weekly if not daily be lifting up your offering needs to the Lord.  We pray people will respond to our preaching and teaching.  Why should we not pray that people will respond to the offering?

We need to understand that the offering is not an intrusion into worship it is worship.  If we do not place the importance upon the offering we are not only endangering funding our ministries but we are watering down the Gospel and cheapening discipleship.  These four steps can help you put the offering back to its proper place of worship.  The end result will be more money to do more ministry!

Mark Brooks- The Stewardship Coach