Everywhere my associates and I go, we encounter the same response to the “Effective Stewardship” program: “We have nothing like this. . . .” From denominational officials to pastors of small and large churches, from the east coast to the west, from north to south, again and again, we hear, “We have nothing like this. . . .”
Why is that statement made so frequently? Possibly because it is so accurate. To the best of our knowledge, there is nothing like the “Effective Stewardship” program on the market today. This low-key program of providing stewardship training and instruction is unique, not only in its concept, but also in the philosophy which underlies it.
Make no mistake — the “Effective Stewardship” program is not fund raising. It is not a high-pressure shot-in-the-arm approach to a church’s financial situation. Nor is it a merely a short-term financial campaign.
Rather, “Effective Stewardship” is a consistent year-round effort that utilizes both written and verbal communications to emphasize the truths of the Scriptures,
“ . . . line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little, there a little” (Isaiah 28:10).
Most denominations have not even begun to think about this approach. Many pastors have, but once they realize the amount of intense work and effort required to create and sustain such a program, they usually do not have the time or resources to devote to this task. And as one pastor observed recently after discovering the “Effective Stewardship” program, “Why should I bother to reinvent the wheel in the area of stewardship training when this program does it so well?”
Because it is unique and so different from the norm of “professional fund raising,” though, the “Effective Stewardship” program frequently meets with resistance when it is first introduced to a pastor or lay leader. Some folks have a hard time comprehending how a simple program could have any kind of effect on their respective churches. However, the track record of the “Effective Stewardship” program is clear: If this program is used as it has been designed, it heightens a congregation’s awareness of what God’s Word says concerning money, material possessions, and giving and usually leads to an increase in overall financial support.