First and foremost, we are asking that you pray and seek God’s leading on what He is asking of you. Prepare your heart to hear Him, and then listen to what He says. Join a small group. Talk with a trusted friend or, if you’re married and have children, talk together about what this commitment will mean for this next season. We are asking that you make a sacrificial commitment so we can LIFT others through our generosity.
How long is my commitment?
We are asking everyone who calls Christ Church their church home to make a two-year commitment—24 months of giving. The fulfillment period for commitments begins on January 1, 2023 and concludes December 31, 2024. Every gift given during this time will go toward the Christ Church fund to support our LIFT vision.
What if I am brand new to Christ Church?
LIFT is about the vision God has for our church family. We believe that the local church is one of the most compelling missions to give toward, and we would really love for you to make Christ Church your home. If you are ready for it, this is a perfect time for you to put a stake in the ground and make this your church. We need you!
What if I have not been a regular giver to Christ Church before?
If you have never before or only occasionally given financially to Christ Church, LIFT was crafted as a wonderful opportunity to see how God will use your gifts for Kingdom impact and how your obedience will transform you. LIFT is a whole-church generosity initiative and is a call to radical, sacrificial giving for absolutely everyone at Christ Church.
What’s the purpose of a stewardship initiative? Don’t we have enough funds already?
Stewardship initiatives serve several important purposes:
They provide a high-profile focal point for stewardship education, reflection and commitment. This is valuable to all of us but especially important for the many hundreds of people who have come into the life of Christ Church since 2016. LIFT will help many households move closer to Christ and His Kingdom’s purposes.
They help us raise monies to meet our annual budget as well as make it possible to fund future needs and opportunities. Our annual budget covers the cost of the routine operations of our church and its ministries of worship, growth and service. Our “normal” budget, however, doesn’t cover the major renovations or special projects that make for a truly thriving church.
Why are we doing another stewardship initiative?
Didn’t we just finish Take Root?
For most of Christ Church’s history, we have conducted a stewardship initiative approximately every three years. We launched our last such initiative (Take Root) in 2016—seven years ago. That stewardship initiative concluded in 2018—five years from the start of the public phase of our LIFT initiative.
Why are we doing a stewardship initiative in light of the current economy?
In the wake of a pandemic and amid the heavy pressures of our times, a vitalized Church is needed more than ever. While we are aware of the current economic conditions, we also know there will always be challenging times. For many of us it is easier to give when things are good—it can be during times like this, when we put more of our faith and trust in Jesus, that He is glorified and we grow. We trust that each individual and family will prayerfully seek God’s direction and follow His leading, in addition to evaluating financial priorities. Please know that we will also be assessing our priorities as we see what offering the people of our church provide.
This is indeed a time when our faith is tested. At the same time, this is a good moment to remember a larger picture.
The story of the Christian church is one of faith and generosity even during times when conditions have been hard (read Acts 2:44–47; 2 Corinthians 8:1–15; 9:6–15).
We see this “New Testament” kind of commitment being exercised by our mission partners all over the world under conditions considerably tougher than we endure in the United States.
We still live in the most materially blessed nation in human history. Since the start of our last stewardship initiative in 2016–when many of us took a leap of faith and increased our giving– the stock market has increased by nearly 125%. That’s an annualized return of 13.25%. When we factor in inflation, it is still a gain of 82%.
Can I designate giving to one project?
Just like our regular giving, we are asking people to generously respond to the full LIFT vision over the next two years through our Christ Church fund. Our leadership has been entrusted with the responsibility of prioritizing spending on the new initiatives and management of the funds and will do so with great care and stewardship of the resources that are given. Please reach out to David Melvin, Executive Director of Ministry Resources, at 630.321.6785 or dmelvin@ChristChurch.us if you have additional questions or would like to discuss this further.
In addition to cash, are there other ways I can give more to the LIFT initiative?
Be prayerful and creative as you explore ways you can give to the initiative. You might have stock, property, or other items of value. You may have stored resources that God has blessed you with in the past that He is calling you to give out of during this time. Please contact Jay Schommer at jschommer@ChristChurch.us, 630.321.3902 or visit the Ways to Give page on our website to give or learn more about non-cash gifts.
We took on debt from the previous stewardship initiative. Will we take on more debt or scale back the vision if we don’t reach our financial goal?
The goal for the LIFT initiative is to reduce debt NOT add to it. The current plan is to pay down our debt by an additional $2 million dollars in addition to our regularly scheduled principal and interest payments. As with all elements of the LIFT vision, our ability to accomplish all the objectives will depend on how God works in the hearts of the people of Christ Church. We fully trust in God’s sovereignty through God’s people to accomplish God’s vision through this LIFT initiative. We will be faithful in stewarding and utilizing all that God provides to that end.
I am uncomfortable when we focus so much attention on money. Can you help me?
Jesus spoke about generosity more than any other topic in Scripture. Not only does Jesus talk about giving, He instructs us how much to give. Matthew 6:21 “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Generosity is about more than just money. It is about our heart posture and living a life clearly committed to Christ.
In addition to a financial commitment, how else can I participate in LIFT?
We want everyone at Christ Church to engage on a transformative spiritual journey through LIFT by praying, studying Scripture, participating in small group life and engaging others in the journey. Consider sharing your story with others. Join or lead a group. Serve faithfully or for the first time.
Take the next step in your journey of discipleship and see what God does.
For more information, reach out to Dave Melvin, Director of Ministry Resources, who is available to answer any further questions you may have. He can be reached at 630.321.6785 and dmelvin@ChristChurch.us.