Do Our Finances Reflect God's Priorities?

A Genesis church generously provides economic resources to finance the mission in their city, their district and the world.

A few years ago my kids, wife, and I gathered together and talked about different hopes and dreams that we had for the next decade.  One of the goals that we set was to go to the World Cup by 2022.  We all got excited about that idea – Qatar is lovely that time of year (no one thought ever)!

Every so often we would talk about the World Cup and how fun it would be to go.  We even saved some money here and there.  But it wasn’t much and we did not have a plan.  As we evaluated our progress 20 months after the first meeting, we discovered that there would be no way to see this mammoth dream become a reality without making some significant changes in our lives.

Sacrifices would need to be made.  We decided we would take no “expensive” vacations for the next few years; we would “stay-cation” instead.  Almost all Christmas or birthday money and other monetary gifts received would go toward the World Cup Fund.  We would save up all our airline miles so that the huge expense of travel would be virtually covered.  We would even start to pray that God would provide for us and prepare us for the World Cup.

Do you know what happened? We realized that with these sacrifices, we would not have to wait until 2022 – we could aim for 2018 in Russia instead!

This story reflects what also often takes place in the Church.  We can say that we prioritize world evangelism.  We can declare that we want to reach our community.  We can preach about the importance of the lost.  But if we do not back all this up with money given to reach these goals, the “values” that we possess prove to be hollow.

Jesus said it this way: “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Lk. 12:34).

The ninth characteristic of a Genesis church is that it generously provides economic resources to finance the mission in their city, their district and the world.

A Genesis church is generous.  Although the world urges us to operate out of fear and “scarcity,” we function out of a deep well-spring of hope and faith in the God who has all the resources of the world at his disposal!

A Genesis church gives sacrificially to propel global mission.  The focus is not merely on our own congregation or even our own city.  A Genesis church utilizes its money to send and support missions and missionaries in order to impact countless cultures and nations all over the globe.

A Genesis church makes sure that its budgets reflect their core values.  Is helping others to know Christ important to us? Then we better have more than 1% of our budget allocated to evangelism.  Is serving our community a vital part of our mission? Then that should be reflected greatly in our expenses at the end of the year.

Did you know that many churches spend 85-90% of their tithes and offerings (or even more) on two things: salaries for pastoral staff and utilities/maintenance of their building and property? That does not leave a lot for reaching our city, much less the nations.

Maybe it will be necessary for us to perform an audit of our finances.  I am not talking about an official analysis done by an auditor, although that is essential, of course!  I am speaking of a financial audit done through spiritual lenses.  What do our family and church income and expenses look like? Are our priorities reflected in the way we give to others? Are God’s priorities reflected in our finances?

After such an audit, we will probably come to the same conclusions my family did.  Sacrifices will need to be made to see the dream become a reality.  And kingdom impact in our communities and world is certainly a dream worth giving to and a goal worth working toward!


A Genesis church generously provides economic resources to finance the mission in their city, their district and the world.


-Scott Armstrong, missionary in the Church of the Nazarene