Something For Nothing

In my day job, I work in an industry where the customers expect something for nothing. We work with federal money, and we get people who seem to believe that should be their primary source of income. The welfare culture has created a generation that believes in participation trophies, a generation that can't bear to call anyone below average. People expect their mere existence to be a rewardable achievement.

I am disheartened, therefore, to hear about that same mindset plaguing the church. I hear about churches with otherwise amazing people, being shuttered because of a lack of giving. Ministers with years and years of training end up working at fast food restaurants to keep their families fed. And yet, everyone bristles at the thought of being asked to give more, sometimes leaving churches because they were "all about the money."

Yet, I think this is merely an educational issue. We have been conditioned in one way of thinking. That way isn't correct.

Hear me, Texas and Arizona friends... Nothing is free. In the case of federal money, the price for the handout for some is paid by the taxes of another. There should be a gratitude there.

The situation with churches is different. The price is not going to be paid by anyone else. We are all called to sacrificial giving countless times in the Bible, and this sort of uncomfortable giving is a show of faith. Even ministers do this. In fact, they give more than you may ever know.

Nothing is free. The price for a "something for nothing" attitude in the church is nothing short of closed churches, broken hearts, and a generation of disillusioned pastors. I am annoyed to see this attitude in my day job... and brokenhearted to see it in my spiritual family.

Because of the life I've lived, chances are you know me from some sort of ministry. Wherever you are attending right now, be a cheerful giver. If you know the joy that come from faithful giving, teach others. If you don't... don't come to God with your money in a clenched fist. Have an open hand and a cheerful heart, and do something out of faith. An open hand is the only way for money, or anything else, to come into your hands. God doesn't promise to bless a clenched fist.
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