5 Modern-Day Church Offering Talks

5 Modern-Day Church Offering Talks

Every weekend, your church sends someone up to make the announcements and talk about the offering. Talking about money in church is notoriously uncomfortable. Some people come to your service armed with the notion that you just want their money. But that’s not what you’re about or why Christians give.

You don’t have time to give a sermon about tithing before you collect the offering, but taking a moment to talk about the value of giving could inspire generosity.

To help you navigate this important topic, we’ve put together five sample talks you could give during your next service.

1. Even when we can’t give much, God can do much with it

In the midst of a very severe trial, their overflowing joy and their extreme poverty welled up in rich generosity. For I testify that they gave as much as they were able, and even beyond their ability. Entirely on their own, they urgently pleaded with us for the privilege of sharing in this service to the Lord’s people. And they exceeded our expectations: They gave themselves first of all to the Lord, and then by the will of God also to us.” —2 Corinthians 8:2–5

Melissa Smith beat cancer twice in her 20s. But the high doses of chemotherapy caused her to develop a rare neurological condition called Transverse Myelitis. It left her paralyzed from the waist down, and she was told she’d never walk again.

Her limited mobility forced her to quit nursing school, and her third-floor apartment—which she couldn’t afford to move out of—transformed into a prison. Melissa was only in her early 30s, but the future was bleak.

After watching her sister win two battles against cancer, Stephanie Smith couldn’t stand by and watch her be defeated by hopelessness. She launched a GoFundMe campaign and reached out to Chive Charities—a group dedicated to championing causes like Melissa’s and getting communities to rally behind needy individuals.

Stephanie and Chive raised more than $400,000 from donors, and for a time there was about $837 pouring in every minute.

When you only think about the resources you have, it’s easy to feel like you can’t make a difference. But as we see in 2 Corinthians, and as we learn through Melissa’s story, generous communities can have a huge impact, even when we don’t have much to offer as individuals.

No matter how much you have to give, God will use it.

Teaching Your Church To Give is a free resource designed to help church leaders like you take these giving talks and develop an even deeper culture of generosity. Click here to download this free ebook and learn how other forward-thinking churches are encouraging giving in this modern age.

2. How are you using what God gives you?

Those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.” —1 Timothy 6:9–10

Pursuing or holding onto money too tightly can ruin us. In fact, this scripture uses words like “harmful” and “destruction” to describe the result of a loving relationship with money. God gave us resources to serve and bless others, and when we adopt that stance, it becomes easier to be open-handed with money. We need to use it to love others, to build up God’s kingdom, and demonstrate our trust in the Lord.

Every week when we gather together, we have the opportunity to ask ourselves, “How am I using what God has given me? Am I close-handed or generous with his financial blessing?”

3. The only investment that lasts forever

Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” —Matthew 6:19–21

Having a healthy retirement plan and college savings for your children is one thing. But we must be wary of investing our resources and our attention in things that won’t last.

This passage is calling us to use what we have to invest in God’s Kingdom, where moth and rust cannot destroy anything. And where thieves can’t break in and steal.

This scripture is showing us that when we look to God and commit ourselves to Him, our finances will also be committed to Heavenly things. Both our heart and our money must be in the same place. Money isn’t just a thing we use here on earth. How we use our resources is an open display of whose we are.

As we prepare to give, we encourage you to reflect on this scripture and what it means to commit your heart and your finances to the Kingdom.

4. Giving: the antidote to hoarding

Then he said to them, ‘Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.’” —Luke 12:15

We live in a fascinating time. Consumerism and materialism are running rampant in our culture, and yet at the same time, people are discovering that living with less can bring them more joy. Books about “tidying up” by getting rid of things are selling millions of copies. And we watch shows about people suffocating under the weight of their possessions for entertainment.

It’s easy to look at people with too much and think, “They need to buy and keep less stuff. Why can’t they just get rid of all that junk?” But the reality is that we’re all vulnerable to the greed of accumulating things—even if it hasn’t transformed our homes into a spectacle.

Jesus warned us a long time ago to be on our guard against greed. You don’t need to be rich to be greedy. Anybody with any income can become greedy and hoard or long for possessions and money—giving sets us free from the bonds of greed.

5. We are all stewards

Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much.” —Luke 16:10

Everything we have doesn’t just come from God. It belongs to Him. As stewards, we are called to be God’s financial advisors and investors. He entrusts us with His money, and we choose how it will be used and invested.

The true test of our ability to be good stewards doesn’t happen when we have plenty. In fact, it’s when we have little. How do we invest the little (or plenty) we have to bless others and honor God through good stewardship? Are we open-handed and generous, or are we stingy because we’re afraid of being in lack for long periods of time?

Steward the little God has given you well and you’ll be trusted with much. We encourage you to approach generosity with an open heart as we commit God’s resources back to Him with thanksgiving and continue investing wisely into the kingdom.

Inspire generosity

Tithing is a complicated topic. But the Bible isn’t afraid to talk about how we should use our money, and the church shouldn’t be, either. Even if you don’t use these sample offering talks, we hope they inspire you to find other ways to bring the ancient truths of Scripture into our modern understanding of money.

Discover how else your church can effectively teach generosity despite the awkwardness that comes with it. Download the free ebook, Teaching Your Church To Give, today!

Ryan Nelson

Ryan Nelson has been a volunteer youth leader with Young Life for nearly a decade. He writes in the Pacific Northwest, where he lives with his wife and twin boys.