Thursday, May 08, 2008

    Youth Stewardship




    Each spring, the church I serve has its annual stewardship campaign. I just finished sending the pledge cards (and letter explaining the basic tenets and concepts of stewardship) to our youth. I’m a little late sending the letter this year; and I was pleased to hear several youth asking when their pledge cards would arrive. I don’t know if other churches have their youth pledge as well? We encourage youth to make a pledge to the church once they have been baptized and become members (this usually begins in fifth grade).

    Writing the letter, encouraged me to think about how we discuss the issue of money, tithing, and stewardship with our youth. We try to convey the idea that everything we have (money, homes, family, the earth) belongs to God. We are caretakers of everything that God has created.

    While the youth I serve have always more or less agreed with this concept, it seems extremely difficult to put such actions into praxis. The idea of sharing our wealth and possessions is definitely a counter-culture idea. So, how can we help our youth follow the teachings of Jesus and learn to share all that they have? Looking back, I wish I had learned the idea of stewardship a long time ago. I truly believe it changes the ways in which you understand life.

    Anyone else doing something similar with their youth?

    --Jacob

    2 comments:

    Celeste said...

    Check out Dave Ramsey's "Generation Change" program for youth! If you've never heard of Dave Ramsey, he is a best-selling author and nationally syndicated radio talk show host who teaches about money God's way...that all money is really God's to begin with! He has amazing resources for people of all ages. His website is www.daveramsey.com.

    Brian said...

    Ma'ake sent in this response by email:

    Bula Jacob,
    Firstly i take my hat off to you for all the good work that you do, I'm Ma'ake and i live here in Fiji, i follow with alot of interest the work that you do with your youth group. Keep up the Great work, God be praised oth ave such people like you!!!

    On this issue about the tithing, our church does not encourage people to give 10% of their wealth as this was apractice followd in the time of the Old Testament. what it usually encouraged though is for people reagrdless of their being youth/employed /old whatever to give whatever they feel they can. by issuing such a 'levy' to justify that you worhsip the lord i think is immoral, (this is my personal view) i know of unfortunate instances here in Fiji where pastors use this to get people to give to the church.

    What we usually do instead is organise small fundraising drives to gather the funds we need. it usually builds that sense of responsibility and knowing that you are actually 'doing' something for the propogation of the Lord's ministry, as the proceeds would go to the good work of the youth.

    Anyway just thought i'd let you what i think, sorry if i stepped on any toes. God Bless and keep up the great work

    Vinaka

    Ma'ake