One of the unwavering commitments of your Elder Council during these last three years of prayerful discussion regarding the Campus Development Plan that is before us a church has been to not compromise or de-emphasize Brook Hills’ annual collection of a Global Offering. Over the years, it has become an important part of who “We Are,” and, Brook Hills, it seems that year after year you rise to the occasion!
In one of our campus development informational meetings earlier this fall, Pastor Matt told those in attendance that he has been praying this year might be a year that, as a church, we give more than we ever have to the Global Offering. I’ve joined him in that prayer.
Here are three reasons I believe in and remain committed to the Brook Hills Global Offering:
- I find joy in giving sacrificially.
It’s one thing to give faithfully and obediently—and even generously—to the local church. The fact of the matter is that’s what followers of Jesus should do. But it’s another thing to give sacrificially. Now, sacrificial giving doesn’t mean irresponsible giving or foolish giving, but I do think it means that it should hurt a little bit.
When talking with the church about the Global Offering, we often use language like, “over and above your regular giving.” What does that mean? It means that in addition to what we discipline ourselves to give regularly, we dig deep into those pockets of money we’re tempted to hang onto (or might otherwise spend on something else) to the point that it feels a little uncomfortable. And, we may even, in faith, give more than what makes sense. Why? For the glory of God.
Over my years as an adult, there have been a few purchases I’ve made that I’ve second-guessed or wished I could have over again (maybe you can relate). But I can’t think of a single time I’ve regretted or second-guessed a financial gift to my church. If there has ever been a question, it’s been, “Did I dig deep enough?” or “Should I have given more?”
Sacrificial giving is not done out of obligation, nor is it done so that God might bless me in return. Rather, when sacrificial giving happens, it brings great glory to God and genuine joy to the giver.
I love investing in the next generation of missionaries.
One of the things I love most about the Global Offering is how it supports students going on short-term trips. In our own family, Kathy and I have been able to send our two (now college) kids on nine mission trips collectively to places like East Asia, Nicaragua, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, New York City, and Atlanta.
Yes, our family had to save thousands of dollars over the course of the last seven years for that to be a reality. But, if you gave to the Global Offering, you were a part of that reality along with us. How? Every student Brook Hills sends has 50% of their trip supported through the Global Offering. What a beautiful picture (and practical expression) of a faith family being on mission together!
Brook Hills, it’s not insignificant that we are intentionally building into our teenagers a love for and commitment to missions. I believe this will pay spiritual and eternal dividends for years and generations to come. Year after year, we are sending scores of middle school, high school, and college students on short-term trips. I’m convinced that some, if not many, of our students will begin going mid-term (it’s already happening). I’m also convinced that some will ultimately decide to give their lives to serve long-term. And to think—you and I get to be a part of how God is shaping the lives of these young men and women! What beats that?!
My dollar goes a long way—literally!
This morning in our gatherings, you are going to hear some of the ways that your Global Offering has been used this past year. As you listen, let it sink in that the money dropped into these baskets around the room is resourcing kingdom work ALL OVER THE WORLD. The gift you give at 3145 Brook Highland Parkway is funding gospel advancement and church planting in some of the most difficult-to-reach places on the planet.
Your U.S. dollar, before it’s spent, gets converted into Rupees, Lira, Ringett, Yuan, and (insert your foreign currency of choice). Why? Because the Global Offering doesn’t stay here. It’s not paying the electric bill or buying office supplies here in Birmingham. It’s sending faithful gospel workers to distant places and supporting fruitful gospel work in those places.
So, Brook Hills, do we believe it’s possible to meet or exceed our church budget needs and begin to resource a campus development project and give more than we ever have to the Global Offering? I believe it is, and I invite you to join me in making each of these a reality.
Let’s be clear. It’s not about setting records. It’s not about patting ourselves on the back. And it’s not even about funding all of our expenses as a church. No, it’s about something . . . Someone . . . much bigger.
Dennis Blythe and his wife, Kathy, have been members of Brook Hills since 2011. They have two children, Bekah and Braden. Dennis currently serves on staff as our Executive Pastor.