Effective Stewardship

Wouldn’t It Be Great?

Ken Williams

One of my all-time favorite commercials is one from a few years ago for Kellogg’s Raisin Bran in which a technician is trying to help three people realize that Raisin Bran not only “tastes great,” but it is also “good for you.” As they gleefully consume their bowls of Raisin Bran, the technician reminds the first individual that Raisin Bran is “good for you.” The second person says she knew that. Knew what? “That Raisin Bran ‘tastes great.'” With that, the technician pounds the table and exclaims that it’s “good for you.” The third person then adds, “Wouldn’t it be great if it was also good for you?”

I guess the reason I like this commercial so much is that it reminds me of some people I have encountered along life’s way. What should be obvious from instruction or some other means somehow remains a mystery to them. This commercial also reminds me of a few churches that have discontinued the
“Effective Stewardship” program.

Recently, a pastor called to indicate that his church was meeting its budget and paying its bills currently, something that had not happened in a long time. However, a couple of members had expressed concern that the “Effective Stewardship” program kept scriptural financial issues before the congregation too frequently, so the church was going to discontinue using the program.

The church was satisfied with the materials and felt they were theologically accurate. The pastor was complimentary as to the value of the program and about our business practices and reliability. That’s when I wondered what was wrong with this picture and thought of the Raisin Bran commercial.

As you know, the “Effective Stewardship” program is not fund-raising. It is education and training based on God’s Word. It “tastes great,” but it is also “good for you” since in most situations, it leads to an increase in overall financial support of the church as it trains people to be better stewards.

Wouldn’t it be great if that could be done without mentioning money, material possessions or giving? Perhaps it could, but I doubt it. You see, the Scripture has more verses about these categories than about heaven and hell combined or about faith. How we handle our wealth is an important subject in God’s eyes.

As you move forward with the “Effective Stewardship” program, please think about the Raisin Bran commercial and ask yourself the question, “If the program ‘tastes great’ and is also ‘good for you,’ doesn’t it make sense for your congregation to keep using it?”

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