Ministering to their Wallet, as Well as Their Heart
Once every year around November I bring in “Christmas barrels” that include personal items for me to use during the year (like coffee and electronics) as well as some ministry tools. Almost every year I also bring in items that can’t be found in SVG for individuals who will pay me back during the year.
Over the years I always collect from individuals after the receive the times….
Except for Bible College Students
They almost always get items for free.
The financial reason for this is because students are unable to work a normal job since they are always at the college. But even if they had the money, I still wouldn’t worry about getting paid back. Because a big part of missions is giving to the next generation of ministers what they need to succeed.
I have written about this in the past, but a pastor visiting Saint Vincent for a Bible conference gave one of the best definitions of missions I’ve ever heard. He said “missions is like being a grandparent. Their goal instead of doing the work themselves, is to give their spiritual grandchildren what they need to do the work. Then they just stand back and smile.”
This grandparenting view of missions has greatly impacted my teaching because it reminds me students don’t just need spiritual help, but financial as well.
This begins by simply sharing what you have
Over the years, I’ve shared any goodies from home, and necessary items with the students
- Jolly Ranchers
- Oreo Cookies
- and LOTS of coffee (I even give them creamer which I never use)
- Pens and backpacks
- And other items
After sharing what you have, it’s about giving what they need
There are two people I’ve ever allowed to drive my car without my being present. The first has since gone overseas, the second is a college student who drives it to do young peoples meetings on Fridays. It was a joy to go up with him one weekend to see the young people he was able to minister to.
This post probably sounds like I’m bragging, please forgive me for that, the truth is I can do so much more for the students! Instead of making myself look good, my point is missions must be at it’s core generous. While we cannot help everybody with everything, we must give whatever we can to those who are actively serving the Lord.