Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. (1 Tim. 6:17-18)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Giving Automatically

For a number of years now, many churches have gone to some type of web-based online giving tool to enable its members to give electronically.

There are many benefits, but also some drawbacks to online giving.

  1. with a few clicks, you can automate all of your giving to your church and schedule it to occur at your choosing. This option works well if your income is fairly steady each month.
  2. you can not only automate your budget/tithe giving, but also capital campaign giving and specific ministries within the church itself.
  3. your giving happens automatically even if you forget your checkbook, tithe envelope, get sick, or go on vacation.
  4. your church's budget giving remains steady and consistent from month to month, especially as more church members use this giving option.
  1. does not work well if your income fluctuates from month to month. You can still give online, but you would need to log-in to your account and alter your giving amounts on a regular basis.
  2. you miss out on the "worship" aspects of giving within your worship service when you have nothing to place in the offering plate. Many churches are now solving this drawback by providing online givers with a special card to place in the plate saying that they gave online.
  3. if you do not budget and track your accounts carefully, you could potentially overdraw on your personal account.
  4. as with any online personal information, there is a slight risk of identity information theft. These online giving services are normally very secure.
I have personally used the online giving option for at least the last 4 years. As a church staff member, I have found it extremely helpful so that I don't "forget" to give. During the offering time of our services, I'm normally so busy on the platform that I can't even get to an offering plate to drop in my tithe envelope.

1 comment:

  1. As a church administrator, I certainly see the benefits of online giving. There are many people who see their giving as more of an "admission price" to church so if they aren't there, they don't give. However, even though our church does use it, I personally don't. As you mentioned, one can easily miss the worship part of giving as well as the joy that God wants us to experience when we give back to Him. I like the idea of cards but there is not that emotional attachment that comes with cash, or to a lesser extent, a check. Great post!