When we pose this question to our churches, the first thing that most people say is to reach more people with the gospel of Jesus Christ. That’s a correct answer, but we rarely discuss how to make that happen or what it would take to do it. Pastors from the previous generations could rely on people hearing the gospel through church services and tent revivals. But in today’s reality, people aren’t coming to church; additionally, many may not know any of the biblical stories that were common knowledge in past generations. So what does it really take to have a more significant impact?
It takes churches taking advantage of the opportunities we have to share the gospel message. Did you know the median age of our churches in the US is around 73 years? In 73 years, culture has changed dramatically, but the need for the gospel has remained constant. Opportunities for sharing the gospel have changed dramatically as well. In the 1800s and early 1900s, tent revivals were an excellent opportunity for sharing the gospel, but today live streaming is a better opportunity for many. Many of our churches were set up for thriving in the 1900s, but as things have changed and continue to change, our churches have to adjust to the opportunity set that is before us. The issue many churches run into is having the resources to tap into those opportunities.
If your church is 60 years old, hopefully, a significant resource build-up exists, to tap into new opportunities. We encourage all our churches to include long-term investments in their ministries. We don’t know what the future holds for any of our ministries, but we do know that it will most likely require funds to operate. Investing and saving, especially during strong periods, opens up opportunities in the future.
A church that began investing $100 a month in 1963 into an investment account would have seen it grow to $1.25 million by 2023. The church would have only deposited a total of $72,000 from its budget over the last 60 years, but the compounding interest would have grown $1.17 million over that same period. If each of our churches began preparing today for the opportunities God has for us in the future, what impact could FWB have for the Kingdom?
It is always easy to run hypothetical scenarios. When it comes to actually putting money aside that we could use today, it becomes very hard. But when we look at how culture has changed in the last 75 years, how much more could it change in the next 75 years? Having investments that work behind the scenes for our ministries to take advantage of those future opportunities could have significant impacts on the culture in which we live. It works better to see where God is working and join Him there in that work, rather than being limited in our reach because we cannot fund the changes needed to join Him. The Board of Retirement started our Institutional Investing program to open up future opportunities for our churches. If your church hasn’t started saving and investing for its future ministry, please get in touch, and we’ll show you how to put a plan in place, so YOUR church can increase your impact.