A young minister who runs a growing ministry and was also at our last EASE CONFERENCE came to me sometime ago and asked, “Sir, I noticed that you people fed people and all the ministers during the last conference and there was no special seed or offering raised all through the conference. I also noticed that the people around you sow into the work effortlessly. Please how do you do this things?”
I told him, “You don’t just teach people to give, you must exemplify giving to them. People don’t give to a church because there’s a need, they give because they trust the pastor. The feeding and several other things were handled by members”
I went on, for them to trust you, you must proof you love them genuinely and not what they have. You must show a genuine interest and commitment to their personal success rather than trying to use them achieve your personal vision or goals. People know when you love them without you saying it. They see beyond your packaging and hear beyond your articulate grammar.
I said to him, I have had the privilege of pastoring a lot of big and successful people in politics, business and in the corporate world yet, I have never directly or indirectly asked any of them to give me or the church I pastor anything even when it’s red in my corner. When there are needs in church, I say it from the altar the way it is and those who are led respond as God leads them to. Today we have quite a number of our people voluntarily paying monthly for billboards, evangelism materials, radio programs etc.
Again I told him, you must first invest, reinvest and keep investing in their lives.
For instance, last year, we got some young men with business ideas which they pitched before a group of selected people and about nineteen of them were selected and seed capital running into millions were given to them with prayers on top and other experienced people assigned to mentor and monitor their progress and feed me back. Many of such we do from time to time. I did not just start this in DACA, it started while I was in Enugu. Now I said to him, if God blesses any of these guys and ladies tomorrow, they won’t struggle to give to the church or their pastor.
Now, when other well to do members of the church see you are heartily committed to the well-being of others, their hearts too get opened towards you and the ministry in your hands.
There were times in Enugu people bring huge sums to me directly strictly for those who need to be empowered or for school fees of members with a caveat that they don’t want their identities disclosed. They could trust me with that. This we are already seeing now in DACA just within this two years of our existence.
Never forget that people are not stupid, that they did not confront you for courtesy sake does not mean they agree with what you are doing. Their resentment is always shown through withholding their resources from you and the work in your hands.
When do you start to invest?
Yes since yesterday!
Start by killing selfish ambitions, greed, gimmicks, manipulative devices and profligacy. Stop enticing rich people from other churches with prophecies, titles or positions- it doesn’t last. Be content with your level per time while aspiring for greater things under God.
Continue with fasting and praying for their spiritual and physical success.
Search out materials that can profit their career and businesses and buy it for them where you can or get them to buy for themselves.
Encourage them to attend conferences, seminars and trainings in their fields.
Get good resource people to upgrade their minds in order for them to build capacity to create, upgrade, innovate and compete Favourably in their fields.
Invest quality time to prepare the messages you teach/preach. Always prepare to preach your destination not your situation.
Understand that harvest is always preceded by SEED AND TIME.
Hope this helps you!