The Levee is Breached, and the Water is RisingThe Levee is Breached, and the Water is Rising https://theprovisumgroup.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/silhouette-and-grayscale-photography-of-man-standing-under-1530423-1024x682.jpg 1024 682 The Provisum Group The Provisum Group https://theprovisumgroup.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/silhouette-and-grayscale-photography-of-man-standing-under-1530423-1024x682.jpg
Recently, I was talking with a pastor of a medium-sized church who, like every church in America, was struggling with low giving during the coronavirus pandemic. He was worried that he wouldn’t be able to keep their local mission projects running, let alone pay the church’s mortgage and he didn’t know what to do.
I talked with him and our CFO and we were able to get his church’s mortgage deferred after working with his bank. Then we went over his line of accounts and I noticed that he had a very sizeable account that had not been touched in years and was simply accruing interest. He told me that a long time parishioner and local businessman had passed away and willed a portion of his estate to the church. I asked him what the fund was for and if there were any restrictions on the fund. He replied, “we can’t touch that, that is for a rainy day.”
I replied, “Pastor, this is a hurricane, the levee is breached and the water is rising. Your church needs to be a lifeboat for your community. I think now may be an appropriate time to use your rainy day fund.”
He agreed with me in principle but didn’t know where to start or what to do. My team began working with him and his board to take the steps necessary to access some of the funds and after a few weeks, we were able to keep his local mission project funded. His church worked with the local health board to make sure they complied with all of the county guidance and they continued to serve those in need during this time of crisis.
Unfortunately, there are a number of churches who are using the crisis to “batten down the hatches” and hope that there is a community to still serve when we come out of this. Not every church has a rainy day fund that they can access but every church has a community that is suffering. Take a look at the resources you do have.
Does your local foodbank still need volunteers? Does the county women’s shelter still need hygiene kits? Do laid-off workers still need help with meals or groceries?
Don’t “hunker down and ride this out.” Use your men’s group to put together bag lunches for the community. Have your women’s ministry collect, purchase, and assemble hygiene kits as their members go to the grocery. Have your youth group volunteer at the foodbank (if that is allowed in your state). Not all resources are monetary and not all problems can be solved by money.
Take a long hard look at your community around your church. What is their need? If you don’t know, don’t ask your members, ask your mayor or your county commissioners. Your congregation may not look like your neighborhood so asking may not yield a true reflection of the need.
Be bold in this time of crisis. It is time for the church to lead. The levee is breached and people need to be saved. Be the lifeboat that they need and use the resources available to you to make a pronounced impact for the Kingdom.
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