I love this post from my friend Dr. Dan Reiland. He's been a distance mentor of mine for nearly 17 years, and his passion and writing never gets old. Check it out!!
We celebrated a “Reverse Offering” during all the worship services yesterday at 12Stone Church, and it was awesome!
Our Senior Pastor Kevin Myers, sensed a prompt from God that would add momentum to the 12Stone culture of intentionally giving ourselves away into the community. The Board and senior staff were 100% in agreement; and this past weekend we launched what I think will prove to be a Kingdom kind of movement.
At the heart of 12Stone is the conviction that “One Matters.” Every person matters to God, so they matter to us! And one of the ways we put that into practice is “One Kindness Matters”.
During the reverse offering we gave $100 to each attending household. 12Stoners agreed to receive the offering, add to that $100, and some will add to it significantly. The purpose is to express intentional acts of kindness across the Northeast Atlanta area.
Nearly $800,000 was distributed back into the hands of 12Stoners and will likely translate (as people add to it) into 1.5-2 million dollars of good will being poured out. The options are limited only to our imagination and the prompts of the Holy Spirit!
The suggested expressions of kindness included:
- Bless a family so they can have a family night out! Dinner/movies.
- Surprise someone at the gas pump. (Maybe an out of town car- show southern hospitality.)
- Pool your money with others (like your small group) to help someone with a major car or home repair.
- Tip extravagantly!
- Spread joy to someone who has recently experienced a loss- a death, unemployment, divorce, etc.
- Help a student get home for the holidays or invite them into yours!
- Pay for the groceries of the person in front of you!
- Add to the 12Stone cash and pass on to parents so they can shop for their kids’ Christmas presents and then go out to dinner. (Ask a school counselor for families in need.)
There is no limit! Kindness is king this Christmas!
Church leader, this kind of God-sized endeavor helps your church dream big and take ministry beyond the walls of your church!
The church doesn’t administrate this, the people do, each as directed by God!
A Reverse Offering could easily be misunderstood, misused and misrepresented. Lots of things could go wrong, but the risk is worth it. The countless hours of planning, security preparation and prayer still could not cover for all that might happen.
As you consider how messy the early church was, including how Jesus crossed lines, took risks, and followed His Father’s lead regardless of repercussions, you might be in for this too! Jesus’ ministry wasn’t safe, but it was powerful. It wasn’t predictable and the outcomes weren’t guaranteed, but lives were changed!
We have great faith that God and the people of 12Stone will multiply this investment into Kingdom-sized proportions. We believe there will be a ripple effect that will travel for months and result in changed lives. We have designed a way to gather stories of what happens through a websitethat is printed on the envelops containing the $100. I can’t wait to read the stories!
This is a great way to watch how empowering your congregation creates momentum within your church.
“12Stoners are very generous and we love to bless the greater community of people we value. Merry Christmas!”
Kevin Myers, Senior Pastor of 12Stone
This is going to be a fun Christmas season as we bring joy to others and a smile to God!
It really is all about God! He is pleased when we touch others’ lives and He is the one that adds the power, favor and blessing to our efforts. God is kind and these acts of kindness are a reflection of His heart for the world! It’s a divine invitation to join God in the expression of His heart.
Ultimately this points to the greatest kindness of all, the gift of his Son Jesus! Father, may this open doors so that others will receive the gift of eternal life!
The sermon that morning was delivered by John Maxwell from Matthew 25. One of the key verses was verse 40:
“‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
Pastors/Christians, perhaps this inspires you to do something like this next weekend! It’s not about how much money. It’s about what God can do! I know of a church in the Midwest that did this last week giving out $5 to each person. It was powerful!
What might you do if God prompts you to jump in?!