Budget Fit Your Church Purpose?

If you have not read the section of the site on Church Purpose, please do so now in order for this practicum to be most helpful to you. Click below:
Church Leadership Basics: God’s Purpose for the Church

Budget as a Litmus TestA church’s budget is a good litmus test for how the church is following God’s purposes.  Review your church purpose and then hold the budget up against it asking yourself the following questions.

  • Does the budget reflect what you state as your church purpose?
  • Is the budget truly a reflection of love for God and others … or a love of self, a love of buildings, a love of technology?
Yes, money must go into salaries, facilities, and equipment but ….
  • How much really goes into ministry?
  • Which areas are first to be cut?
  • Can you justify the expenditures for salaries, facilities, and equipment in light of your church purpose?
  • Are there ways salaries, facilities, and equipment needs can be brought more in line?
  • How purposefully is the budget being developed or are you simply doing it how you always have done it?

If you are going to line up with God’s purposes, then you must be deliberate even in budgeting. God and His Word must be the standard for how you proceed, not tradition or what “feels” right or what is expedient.

  • Are you willing to invest the time and effort into the budget to get it right so it lines up with God’s purposes?

If you wait too long to start working on the budget, it will be easier to just compare it to the previous year, make a few adjustments, and figure all is well instead of assessing what truly lines up with your purpose.

  • Are you running into problems getting people on board with this kind of approach to budgeting?

If so, then you need to get back to the basics. Communicate, communicate, communicate. Model, model, model. Teach on it. Teach on it. Teach on it. Keep at it so God’s purposes become the standard for all you do, the grid through which all decisions are measured … a part of your church’s culture to do so.

  • Does such a deliberate approach to budgeting go against your personality or style?

If it just doesn’t fit your style or personality to do this, delegate the responsibility to someone for whom this approach does work and who is sold on the church’s purpose. Learn from them. Seek the balance you need.

  • Are you making sure prayer and God’s Word is guiding the process and not mere administration?

If not, very likely you are not budgeting purposefully. God has to be brought into the process when seeking to line up with His purposes.

In this post I have posed more questions than answers. That’s what we must do if we are going to budget purposefully.

Let’s Help One Another:  Can anyone give some specific steps you have taken to make sure budgeting reflects your church purpose and isn’t merely an administrative activity?  Feel free to comment below.

3 Replies to “Budget Fit Your Church Purpose?”

  1. tend to just do budget – Next time before we do budget plan to run these questions thru leadership team.

      • How true, Bill. Though it might not be easy to be deliberate in this, and we might not always like our answers, at least it heads us in the right direction. Until we stop and ask the tough questions, we won’t even begin to head in this direction. While we would like to be able to say we have arrived, the important thing is that we are at least progressing toward God’s purposes, even in the way we budget. Remember the words of Philippians 3 — “Not that I have already obtained all this . . . I press on . . .”

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