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3 Components of Fruitful Christian Stewardship Campaigns By Dr. Gary Hoag

The goal of Christian stewardship campaigns is to rally people to participate with God in His work through prayer, service, giving, and social interaction. Done right, campaigns build interpersonal and virtual communities!

Because God’s Word contains no magic formula for success, how should we lead? Research reveals that faithfulness to biblical teachings in three areas can help us position our church or ministry for fruitfulness.

(1) Leaders must live out the red letters

Many Bibles mark Jesus’ words with red letters. As leaders, we know them, but do we live them out? Recent findings of Chris Willard and Jim Sheppard show that generous leaders lead generous ministries.

Last month, a large church pastor told me that for as long as he could remember, his church had insufficient funds to accomplish its mission locally, regionally, and globally. That is, until his “What if” series: “What if we did what Jesus said?” What if we lived out the red letters of Jesus?

In this teaching, the pastor preached the Word and shared aspects of his life inconsistent with Jesus’ teachings. For instance, he shared how he was guilty of storing treasures in the wrong place (Matt 6:19-21). In repenting of his foolishness, his church followed his example. Generosity starts with the leader.

(2) Organizations must put God’s resources to work

 Most stewardship campaigns focus on what churches or ministries don’t have instead of putting what they do have to work. If we only had more money… If we only had more square footage… Sound familiar?

If you feel you lack resources, remember the words of Adoniram Judson: “We may indeed desire much more. But let us use what we have, and God will give us more.” Faithful stewardship is about putting God’s resources to work (Matt. 25:16) and trusting God to provide what is needed as the ministry grows.

Don’t look to money to grow your ministry; look to the Sustainer of all things (Col 1:17). Looking to money is described in antiquity as “the love of money” or “greed,” which is idolatry (1 Tim 3:3; 6:10; Col. 3:5; Eph 4:5). Remember, as a steward leader, your role is to put God’s resources to work and leave the results to God.

(3) Stewards should be instructed to participate willingly from what they have

Consider how Paul approached the Corinthian church regarding their participation in the Jerusalem collection. In his first letter to them: he did not ask them to give, he directed them to take up a voluntary collection for their brothers and sisters who were in need (1 Cor. 16:1-4). All giving should be willing.

How much were they to give? “For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have.” (2 Cor. 8:12). Participation in God’s work is not linked to percentages but to provision. If you’ve been blessed a little, give a little. You get to provide a lot if you’ve been blessed a lot!

Want to have a fruitful Christian stewardship campaign?

It starts with you. Are you giving willingly and generously from what you have? Because people will follow your lead, what does your example look like?

As an organization, are you putting God’s resources to work by the instructions in His Word? In so doing, your work may suffer, stagnate, or flourish. Only God knows. Your role is to be a faithful steward.

Lastly, are you instructing stewards to participate willingly from what they have? If not, start today because such giving is acceptable to God and helps people grow in the grace of giving.


Gary Hoag is the Generosity Monk. Visit his website, Generosity Monk, and learn more about encouraging Christian generosity.


What is Christian Leadership Alliance?

Christian Leadership Alliance equips and unites leaders to transform the world for Christ. We are the leaders of Christ-centered organizations who are dedicated to faithful stewardship for greater kingdom impact.

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