grow a healthy church


8 Ways to Build a Culture of Generosity at Your Church

8 Ways to Build a Culture of Generosity at Your Church

I love helping churches grow in their financial intelligence which includes creating a culture of generosity.

Generous churches tend to be healthy churches as this key value flows through areas of serving and kindness as well as giving.

I’ve written extensively on this topic including

4 Ways To Avoid A Fiasco In Your Church Cash Flow Analysis,

14 Reasons Pastors Avoid Preaching On Money,

12 Best Practices In Church Finances, and

How to Establish a Vision-Centred Church Budget.

My good friend Dean Sweetman, CEO of Tithely. models generosity in his own life and his leadership.

His leadership of the giving tools found in Tithely has helped it grow into one of the critical apps for churches.

In this post, Dean outlines vital steps you can take to build a culture of generosity in your church.

Creating culture is no easy task. This article will help you in this complex task.

8 Ways to Build a Culture of Generosity at Your Church

I’m passionate about generosity…and I’m especially passionate about generosity in the church.

I believe that generosity is key to healthy discipleship and Kingdom-centered growth. But it’s not always easy to build a culture of generosity at your church.

Culture of Generosity

The reality is, people, don’t like giving away their hard-earned money.

They need to catch the Biblical vision for generosity–and they need to be equipped with tools that make it easy to give.

In the following article, I’m going to talk about how church leaders can build a stronger culture of generosity and equip their people to respond to the call to give. This is gleaned from my 30 years of experience as a pastor and nearly 10 years of running one of the most widely used online giving platforms in the world.

Ready? Let’s dive in.

1.   Get a personal revelation on giving.

Teachers and preachers who have a personal revelation on generosity are better equipped to lead others in generosity.

In other words, teachers and preachers who give are better at helping others to do the same!

Dive into Scripture, get a revelation on giving, and see that it’s easier than you thought to teach on giving.

2.   Don’t overlook your offering message.

While I believe you should preach full sermons on generosity (see #3), you should also pay attention to your offering message. 

How can you craft an offering message that makes an impact?

  • Use scripture.
  • Bring revelation to Scripture.
  • Make it easy to give online.
  • Direct church members to a moment of prayer.

You may want to invite other church leaders or members to prepare a 5-minute offering message. This can also be a great chance to train and raise up others.

Finally, take a prayerful moment during your offering time. Slow down, share Scripture or a testimony (or both), and ask people to pray.

While giving can be tough for anyone, it can become a natural habit for your church members when they get a revelation of just how blessed it is to be generous.

Culture of Generosity

3.   Preach on generosity.

At least once a year, prepare a sermon series on generosity.

This can be a powerful opportunity to reinforce truth and address an aspect of generosity that you haven’t talked about in a while.

It’s also important to teach this kind of a series during an annual giving campaign.

You may want to talk about tithing, above and beyond giving, or giving to missions. Preach over a series of 3-4 weeks, dig deep into Scripture, and rely on prayer and worship to allow revelation to unfold.

4.   Talk about giving in small groups and discipleship.

One of the best ways to help build a culture of generosity at your church is to talk about it in smaller settings, like a Bible study.

There will also be times when you meet one-on-one with individuals about their financial journeys. For example, you may want to meet with business leaders in your church to pastor them through the unique challenges that come with entrepreneurship.

5.   Make it easy to give.

Remove the friction from giving. The best way to do this is to provide a way for church members to give online and on their mobile phones–even with a text message.

Culture of Generosity

You can learn more about easy online giving here.

6.   Offer recurring giving.

If you’re already comfortable with teaching Biblical generosity, the next step is to encourage your congregation to make a recurring gift.

A recurring gift makes it automatic for someone to give regularly. If they miss church, or they’re in the middle of a busy season, giving doesn’t slip through the cracks. For people who are already committed to your church, this isn’t a big ask.

It’s simply an invitation to partner with you in a way that makes sense for your budget and community.

Start by asking your leadership and core members to give on a recurring basis. Then, you can open it up to your entire church.

Over time, you’ll find that recurring giving will allow you to budget and plan better for the future.

raise more money

Pastor, do you want to raise more money for your mission?

Take our simple 3 min quiz and we will give you specific and personalized steps to boost your church's finances.

7.   Embrace data, reporting, and tracking.

What’s the biggest difference between leading a church and running a business?

In business, you can’t afford to ignore the numbers: revenue, income, and expenses.

But in church, we often make the mistake of ignoring data, including statistics on church growth, giving, attendance, and more.

Why do we look the other way? Because it can be painful to compare your ministry to others or to see the evidence that your church isn’t growing as quickly as you’d like.

But numbers matter. Data gives you key insight into what’s happening at your church, so that you can plan for the future and be proactive about drop-offs in attendance, giving, and growth.

Embrace the numbers. They’ll make you a better leader, and help you build a healthier church.

Culture of Generosity

8.   Try a pledge campaign.

Pledge campaigns are designed to raise money for a specific project–such as a new church building. They can also help build enthusiasm and excitement for a specific goal…and contribute to a culture of generosity.

Here are six keys to running a successful pledge campaign:

  1. Have a clear vision of what you’re doing and how much you need to raise.
  2. Systematically cast vision for 4-8 weeks.
  3. Connect with generous givers.
  4. Host a giving gala.
  5. Set up easy giving with Tithely.
  6. Give a call to generosity at a weekend service.

The most important thing for your church members to remember is that a pledge campaign is not about giving an equal amount…it’s about making an equal sacrifice to help reach your goal together as a church.

Grow Your Church with Online Giving

One of the most important ways to build a culture of generosity in a church is to make giving easy and frictionless. People want to be able to give with just one or two clicks…and they want to be able to give when and where they want.

That’s why I started Tithely–an online giving platform that makes generosity intuitive for church members, and affordable for churches. Check out Tithely to learn more about using free online giving tools for your church.

raise more money

Pastor, do you want to raise more money for your mission?

Take our simple 3 min quiz and we will give you specific and personalized steps to boost your church's finances.


John is a wellspring of information, experience and advice in all things church. His responses were often out of the box of what's been said before.
Ps Christie Blaikie
Oasis Church

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