I believe every pastor should help his church grow in generosity. One tool I’ve used for many years is called a “Tithe Demonstration Day.” It’s essentially setting aside one Sunday each year, usually in a stewardship sermon series, when we challenge every person in the church to tithe, give 10 percent of one week’s income. It’s always the highest giving Sunday of the year. And weekly giving usually increases after that Sunday as well. I’ve included below the text of a bulletin insert we’ve used that simply explains it. We called this one the “7-30-90” plan because we encouraged not only tithing for one week, but continued tithing/increased giving for 30 or 90 days. Most people who build a habit over 90 days make it permanent.
If you schedule a Tithe Demo day, consider these pointers first.
- Promote it well through all your promotion channels. Start a month prior.
- Use a tithing testimony the week prior.
- Mail a reminder the week prior in addition to sending an email reminder.
- Create a special envelope for that Sunday.
- Have your church tithe 10 percent of the offering given on Tithe Demo day to some ministry outside the church. Be sure to promote this well. This models for the people that your church will also tithe.
- If you are the senior pastor, share your commitment about giving.
- Report the results the week after. Make it a big celebration.
- Include some sort of continued giving commitment that you are comfortable with, as the insert does.
- Ideally, teach a four-week series on generosity and schedule Tithe Demo day on the fourth week. If you don’t do a full series, preach on giving two weeks prior.
Here’s the text of the insert we used. Use it any way that helps.
The 7-30-90 Generosity Plan
If you consider (church name) your church home, would you prayerfully consider accepting the “7-30-90 and beyond” challenge?
Recently Pastor Charles challenged those who don’t yet tithe to trust God to enable them to begin tithing in a step-wise fashion. He also challenged those who do tithe not to view tithing as a ceiling, but a foundation upon which to become a “beyond” giver.
God’s Word teaches that Christ followers should generously give back to Jesus their time, talents and treasures. A tithe serves as a monetary ‘benchmark’ for systematic, proportionate giving. The word “tithe” is a mathematical term that means “a tenth or 1/10.” It means giving 10 percent of your income back to the Lord (Malachi 3:10).
The “7-30-90 and beyond” challenge is a three-step faith venture.
Step 1: tithe (give 10 percent of a week’s income) on Sunday, (date) on our all church Tithe Demonstration Day* (details below)
Step 2: after taking that first step continue to trust God and tithe your income through the entire month of March
Step 3: continue your faith journey and trust Him to enable you to continue tithing for three months (March-May)
Tithing example: If you make $52,000 per year and divide that by 52 weeks, your weekly income is $1,000/week. $1,000 weekly income x 10% = $100. A weekly tithe would be $100.
Note: Because of your financial situation, you may need to modify Steps 2 and 3 by increasing your giving over a longer time period so that by year’s end you can tithe regularly.
After three months of faithfulness, tithing will become a regular part of your financial plan.
If you now tithe, consider the ‘beyond’ part of the challenge an opportunity to review your giving and consider giving beyond a tithe.
(the back side of the bulletin insert is below)
TITHE DEMONSTRATION SUNDAY – SUNDAY, (date)
WHAT IS TITHE DEMONSTRATION SUNDAY?
It is an invitation for everyone who calls (church name) their church home to give one week’s tithe on this Sunday (10 percent of gross household weekly income). The purpose is to demonstrate what our potential could be if every household in our church family tithed.
WHAT IF I WON’T BE IN CHURCH on (date)?
If you can’t attend church on (date), please use one of these three options: (a) Mail in your tithe so it will arrive prior to Sunday, (date); (b) Drop your tithe off at the church office; (c) Send it with a friend; (d) use our online electronic funds transfer option (go to…your website…for instructions).
WHAT IF I’M ALREADY TITHING?
Thank you for your faithfulness. If you give on a monthly or biweekly basis, please adjust your giving schedule to participate in this church offering for this one Sunday.
WHAT IF I FEEL ABSOLUTELY UNABLE TO TITHE?
We ask that you give consistently as God leads you. If you feel absolutely unable to tithe, check your heart and God’s Word and make sure it is consistent with His leading.
On that day our church will tithe that day’s offering. We will be giving 10 percent to (ministry).
“I just learned a simple way to encourage tithing in my church.”
How have you helped increase your church’s generosity?
This article originally appeared here.