Creating a Generous Church Culture: Insights from Pastor Randy Deal

Generosity is at the heart of the Church. But how can you create a culture of generosity within your own ministry? In this episode of Moving Mountains, Pastor Randy Deal from Rock Point Church shares what they’re doing to create a culture of generosity and how it’s spreading beyond their campus to bless the community around them. If you’re looking for practical steps to create a culture of generosity in your own ministry, or some encouragement as you walk through the process, you’ll find that in this episode of Moving Mountains.

Talking About Generosity All Year Long

So does having a sermon series on generosity create a culture of generosity? Maybe. 

But at Rock Point, generosity is a value woven into everything they do, from outreach to events to sermons. Randy shares, “We’re not the church that, at the beginning of every year, has a generosity sermon series. We talk about generosity with your time, talent, treasure, and testimony all the time, in every sermon series, multiple times.” Consistently sharing that message allows everyone, from those brand-new to those who have been at Rock Point from the start 20 years ago, understand generosity at its core and how they can personally put it into practice. And for Randy, there’s a big difference between talking about money and generosity. At Rock Point, Randy notes, “we talk about generosity: your time, your talent, your treasure, and your testimony.”

Making Fundraising Fun

Randy told a friend at Vision Arizona, the church planting network, “You’re gonna fundraise till Jesus comes.” So if fundraising is such a crucial part of ministry, how can churches make it exciting and not just another item in the Sunday morning announcements?

Rock Point Church intentionally focuses a fundraising campaign on something they need and makes it easy for people to see how their gift makes a difference. 

“Since we grand-opened 21 years ago, I think we’ve had maybe ten generosity campaigns,” says Randy.  “Our first one was called ‘Take the Land’ because we were just buying land. And then we did one called ‘Upon This Rock’ because we were going to build. Then we were going to build again. It was called ‘He Builds.’ We even did a campaign called ‘Chairs’ because we built the building but had no money to outfit it.” Each campaign had a laser-focus purpose so that Rock Point could continue to grow and donors could easily get behind the cause. 

Even today, Rock Point is creating fun and intentional giving campaigns. Randy says, “I think people are like, hey, what’s next?” Now the focus has moved to the next generation. He shares, “Our current campaign is called the “We Are Rock Point” campaign. It just started last year. It’ll end in 2024. And it’s [fundraising] to build a third building now. It’s for a 30,000-square-foot kids building, so it’s all about kids ministry and reaching the next generation.” 

Simplifying Giving At Church

Technology is essential for churches. Especially as a church, Randy states that if you’re “trying to reach this next generation, that’s where they are, is on their tech… It’s absolutely the best tool to point people to Jesus by loving them like Jesus.”

For Rock Point, technology is essential for making things easy, whether getting connected or giving to a fundraising campaign. Randy says, “It has to be right now. If you click or tap your phone more than a couple of times, you’re probably not going to do it. And so, enter to the stage, Pushpay. Over 90% of our giving is online to Pushpay.”

Easy giving is one way to encourage generosity within a church. Randy notes, “We don’t pass an offering plate at Rock Point, it’s all online… And because of that, when we went through the pandemic, where we couldn’t meet physically together, our giving never suffered.” How? It all goes back to a culture of generosity. Randy says, “Because everybody was [giving] like they always had. They have that culture where members don’t have to be present, to give tithes and offerings.”

Putting Gifts Into Action

Randy shares, “When Pastor Bill and I started this church, we said from the beginning that our outreach efforts are going to be where God lands us.” And their local outreach starts next door.

“Our greatest gift that God has given us, local outreach wise, is Casteel High School. They built it right next to us, on that piece of land on the corner.” Randy recalls that Rock Point wanted to build on that land when they started the church, but he says, “God knew. Because then Chandler Unified School District built Casteel High School there.”

Randy shares that Rock Point’s staff thought, “There’s our mission field,” when Casteel high school was being built next door. Randy felt like God brought it right to them. From the start, Rock Point has been connecting with the school district to live out their mission of pointing people to Jesus by loving them like Jesus. Randy shares, “The original plans that Chandler Unified School District put out for how they were going to lay out that campus… were flipped. We started talking to them in the very beginning phases, and they flipped their whole campus master plan so that we could share our parking.” 

He continues, “It’s a huge school, with thousands of students. We actually have staff members that their job is to take care of Casteel high school and all the students. So our campus is open for after school hangouts. Hundreds of students flood our patio and hang every weekday when school gets out and then their parents pick them up from our site.” 

By creating a welcoming space for students to hang out after school, Rock Point opens the door to deeper relationships. Randy recalls, “I remember last year students had moved the little centerpiece on the table, the little fake succulent, and carved a pentagram in the table. And then they put the little plant back over it and thought nobody saw.” Randy chuckles and notes that cameras are everywhere, and the Rock Point staff saw what the students did. 

He says, “There’s some people that were like, ‘Oh my gosh, why are we letting them over here?'” But Randy knew those kids are exactly the kinds of kids Rock Point needs to minister to.” He continues, “It’s these kids that are far from God. They’re walking onto our campus. So we’re doing everything we can to show them the love of Christ and reach them for Christ.”

Nurturing Relationships

Whether connecting with students, engaging a first-time guest, or continuing the relationship with a current “Rock Pointer,” relationships are at the core of creating a culture of generosity. Seeing people, meeting them where they are, and giving them resources to get where they want to be is generosity in action. 

For Randy, it’s important that no one gets lost in the crowds or falls through the cracks. He shares, “We cannot effectively and efficiently move people along in their spiritual journey in their spiritual growth without the process queues that we’ve built. We can see any individual where they are as they go through our next steps process. And we can intentionally move them along, [using] internal invites and mail merges and all of that, to make sure they’re taking their next step.”

After pastoring for a couple of decades, Randy admits, “there’s a reason Scripture calls us sheep, right? We need a shepherd. We’re followers. If you just tell people what steps to take, we find they take it.” When churches offer support and intentionally guide their flock, their community will flourish!

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