Step 1: Spend some time in Spiritual Discernment
In the Lutheran church - we are committed to being people of the Bible. We affirm that the Bible is "the source and norm of our life and proclamation." As we think about our possessions - specifically our finances - here are a few passages from Scripture that might be helpful to consider:
- “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:19-24)
- “Give generously to him and do so without a grudging heart; then because of this the Lord your God will bless you in all your work.” (Deuteronomy 15:10)
- “Bring the whole tithe . . . and see if I will not . . . pour out much blessing.” (Malachi 3:6-12)
- “The love of money is a root of evil . . . be rich in good deeds, generous, and willing to share.” (1 Timothy 6:6-19)
- “Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” (Luke 12:13-21)
Step 2: Consider what others have said
Any time you are considering lending your financial support to a church it is important to know what others are saying about the ministries, the community and the leadership. Here are a few excerpts from a recent satisfaction survey conducted in May of 2018:
- “There are many inspiring things happening here. Along with the traditional, there are events, attitudes, and most importantly, actions of the minister and its members that are fresh and contemporary.”
- “This church shows love and acceptance VERY well.”
- “I really enjoy the pastor’s method of studying the readings and making them relevant to today’s world. He is empowering and makes me want to take action in my faith, not just experience it once a week at church.”
- “Faith+Journey welcomes all individuals — this is the first church I’ve felt comfortable going to.”
- “Each time I have visited Faith+Journey I have left feeling much better than when I entered. The sermon, the atmosphere, and the people are so uplifting. I truly feel God’s presence here.”
- “the pastors ROCK!"
Step 3: Discerning Your Gift
Ok, this is the toughest part - it shouldn't be - but it is. So many times we approach this idea from the point of scarcity (if I give to God then I won't have enough for...) instead of abundance (God has already given me all that I need). Money has a powerful influence on out lives and it is hard to let it go sometimes - OK all the time. Across the ELCA - the average gift given to the local congregation is $906/year! That equates to $17.42/week. This means that there is a lot that the local church would like to do - in the life of its people and in the life of the community - that we simply cannot do - only because we do not have the resource to do it. Luckily, at Faith✟Journey support per attendee is roughly $2,403/yr.
Take a moment to reflect on the following questions and allow your reflections to guide your thinking:
- What have I received from God (possessions, gifts, feelings, relationships, etc.)?
- What have I received from my community?
- What positive forces have I noticed at work at FJLC through these testimonials and my own experiences?
- How do my calendar and checking account speak to my priorities?
Now - consider making a move toward regular and consistent support of God's work at FJLC. This can be done in a few ways:
1. Pick an amount that you feel is right to offer in support of God's mission at FJLC. What that amount is depends on you and your personal reflections and prayer. Here are some examples that some people use:
$10/Week (roughly the price one Supersized Big Mac meal per week) over the course of a year = $520
$20/Week (roughly the price of one large pizza) over the course of a year = $1040
$50/week (roughly the price of a night out) over the course of a year = $2600
2. Consider offering to God's work a portion (percentage) of your income. A tithe is an Old Testament idea with roots in Jacob’s promise to give God a tenth of all he obtained out of thanks for everything he had been given (Genesis 28:12-22). Christians have adopted the tithe as a spiritual practice that helps develop a thankful heart for all God’s gifts and redirect their dependence on God.
A. Determine You Current Giving Percentage
☐ ÷ ☐ = ☐ ×100 = ☐
Expected Expected Percentage of
Total Giving Total Income Income given
B. Consider moving up - one percentage point (or any increase you choose) from your current level.
☐ × 1.__ = ☐
Current Percent increase New Giving Level
Total Giving (1.02 = 2%, 1.10 = 10%)
C. Consider figure your giving and then make the commitment to increase you giving (weekly, monthly, whatever you decide) by a set amount.
Imagine the power that a congregation could muster if everyone simply increased their giving by $10/week? Again, it's not about the money - it is about the ministry that we can (or cannot) do - based on the resources that we have to fund the ministry we want
Step 4: Communicate Your Commitment
We strive for your firm commitment to make our goal become a reality. Once you’ve prayerfully considered your gift, please communicate it to us. This serves one purpose only - when we print out your quarterly giving statement - your commitment amount will appear on that form for your reference and comparison.
Step 5: Fund Your Pledge
Here’s how to fulfill your commitment:
Automatic Electronic Giving
Sign up at our online giving page. It takes 90 seconds to input your information and set up weekly, monthly, or yearly giving that debits directly from your bank account (FJLC’s preferred method).
Give using your Phone
Text "FJLCGive" to 77977 and follow the on screen directions
Personal Offering Envelopes
Envelopes will be made available for you if you indicate this preference. These physical reminders can help you fulfill your obligation. Once a year, everyone receives a pack of envelopes to use.
Use your Credit/Debt Card
We have giving stations that accept all major credit cards so that you can give in a way that make the most sense to you. There is processing fee charged to the church for his service - so you might want to add a small amount to cover that fee.
We provide small envelopes in the pew for your gift during service. Please be sure to mark your name on the envelope so we can attribute the gift towards your pledge.
Step 6: Receive Our Thanks!
Only you can help us grow together—thank you! We look forward to thanking you many times.