Pray: The Macedonian church was seen to have faith beyond the horizon. They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us, the Church. Our faith beyond the horizon doesn’t come from our personality or even our emotions but seeking God through prayer. Our faith beyond the horizon comes by being with Jesus. Ask God what He wants you to give to the UNCHARTED initiative. Surrender all you are and all you have to Him. Be BOLD as you pray!
Reflect: As you pray, we believe the Holy Spirit will speak to you. Take some time to reflect on what you think God is saying to you. If you are married, talk about where you sense the Holy Spirit leading. If you find yourself in different places, continue to pray and reflect, humbling yourselves before God and each other.
Take An Uncharted Step: Discipleship and stewardship go hand in hand. As we go deeper into our relationship with God, we learn what it means to value Him above all else. Growing as a follower of Jesus is a journey of ongoing steps of trust in Jesus. We don’t grow without taking a step of faith. So growing in stewardship requires us to take a step in trusting Jesus as we give what He has called us to give. We do this because we value Him more than any commitment to generosity for the specific purpose of navigating people to God.
The Uncharted Journey: The Uncharted Journey (see below) is a tool designed to help a person move from money being their god to money being a tool for God’s Kingdom. The Uncharted Journey focuses on behaviors and attitudes of our hearts rather than on amounts or percentages, further transforming us into the likeness of Christ. Each step of the Uncharted Journey represents growth in a lifestyle of generosity and sacrifice. These are not steps you slowly ascend to get to God, but simply a way to evaluate your growth in generosity. Scripture encourages us to grow in every facet of our walk with Christ, including the grace of giving (2 Corinthians 8:7).
In the past, Redemption has had campaigns (as have other churches you may have been a part of) asking you to give ‘above and beyond’ your regular giving in an effort to complete special projects. At Redemption, these campaigns have been used to build buildings used for the mission of loving God, loving people, and seeing God change the world. We have found, however, this kind of ‘above and beyond’ giving can be confusing to people who don’t have foundation of ‘regular giving’ or who aren’t able to put an amount on their giving. We believe we are all on ONE MISSION — the mission to love God, love people, and see Him change our world.
Redemption’s UNCHARTED initiative will last two years (Nov. 2017 to Nov. 2019). In these two years, every gift given to Redemption Christian Church will go to ONE FUND, the Uncharted Initiative, to help us faithfully do the kingdom work God has set for us to do.
Sample Commitment Card
Commitment cards will help us determine our budget going forward in 2018 and 2019. Names are not required (completely up to you). Commitment cards will be collected on the final Sunday of the UNCHARTED series, Oct. 15. We will have cards to hand out soon at each campus.
Our goal of $7 to $9 million is a big leap of faith. However, with God, all things are possible. On the right, you can see how many people giving varying levels it will take to get to our highest goal of $9 million.
In 2 Corinthians 9:7-8 (NLT), Paul write to the church in Corinth, “You must each decide in your heart how much to give. And don’t give reluctantly or in response to pressure. ‘For God loves a person who gives cheerfully.’ And God will generously provide all you need. Then you will always have everything you need and plenty left over to share with others.” What you give is a decision to be made prayerfully. In Scripture, a tithe is a tenth of your earnings. (See Malachai 3:10). At Redemption, we believe and teach each person should be prayerful about what they give and give cheerfully.
The Uncharted Giving Journey
Depending on your background, a time of giving at church may inspire a multitude of thoughts and emotions.
You may be a rookie giver, giving this whole “giving” thing a shot and trusting God with your finances for the first time. You might be the kind of person country singer Toby Keith once sang about who feels good when you “put an extra five in the plate at church.”
You might be a regular giver, giving on a consistent basis but not necessarily sacrificing. You might give regularly, but it’s not a big factor in your budget or among the top priorities.
Or … you might be a radical giver, giving consistently in a way that costs you with an eye on longer-term impact for the Kingdom of God. Giving is at the top of your budget each week and you don’t ask God what you should give, but rather, what you should keep.
No matter which type of giver you are, we want you to take an uncharted step of faith during this initiative and move toward a new level of faith in God’s provision.
Debt: The Story So Far
Debt and savings are not always the most inspirational tools in terms of spurring God’s people toward generosity. However, God has shown us through His word that debt can hinder and we are to be wise with the resources He has provided.
With that in mind, and as we seek to pay down debt and be wise by saving for big-ticket items in the future (building repairs, heat and air systems, audio-visual systems, etc.), below is a look at Redemption’s costs for building/renovating structures since the construction of our first building in 2006-07. You can also see how much we have borrowed toward those projects (the first building in Jasper, the first expansion of that building, Jasper’s Worship Center A, and the Loogootee Campus building renovation), and how much we have left to pay.
While the road ahead is, seemingly, long, we can see how far we’ve already come through God providing, through His people being generous, so far in this work in southern Indiana.