I’ve lost count of how many of my ‘readers’ have told me I’m not going to heaven. Some have even been as kind to tell me where I’m going instead.
So, what’s caused all this ruckus?
People have sent me emails asking for money, and I’ve said no. Those very same people have turned on me and called me a barrage of nasty things.
This is quickly becoming a pet peeve, so I decided to address it publically on the blog (this way I can point people to this post rather than constantly trying to explain/defend myself).
First, I apologize publically for the fact that my blog name miscommunicates. Money Help for Christians means I’m trying to help Christians with their finances. It does not mean I have an unlimited supply of money to give to every citizen of every country in God’s beautiful world. I am an individual, not an organization. There are no headquarters behind Money Help for Christians. The only staff I have is my wife who proofreads everything. By the way, my only employee (my wife) works for free.
4 Things We Need to Understand When People Say No to Our Requests
Reality #1: Money is a limited resource.
It is unlimited in the sense that someone with enough drive, passion, and ability can always get more. It is limited in the sense that what you have is what you have. As such, when you manage your money you will be forced to say yes, and you will be forced to say no. Deciding when to say yes and no can be difficult.
A Christ follower will likely be forced to say no to some very, very good benevolence and ministry opportunities. I know I have.
Setting boundaries and saying no are not anti-Christian characteristics. God blesses us when we say yes, but he does not expect us to give to others what he himself has not given to us. We don’t create the wealth.
Reality #2: The kingdom of God is larger than Me or You.
When I was fundraising to become a missionary, some churches and individuals told me they could not or would not support our work. The first human impulse is to think that they must have some type of character or spiritual flaw. That is not the case.
Instead, it means they’ve accepted other ministries that they feel called to fulfill. May God bless and not curse them for that.
Saying no to me is not saying no to God or his Kingdom.
Reality #3: More character is revealed in a ‘no’ answer than a ‘yes’ answer.
When you attack a potential donor when they say no, they only feel more confident that the decision they made was the right one. When we ask for a gift, it is just that – a gift. We have no right to it, and we have no right to demand it.
Personally, when someone – on the phone or in person – starts to push me, I immediately withdraw the consideration of my gift. My stewardship responsibility is too important to allow the strongest sales pitch to win my gift. I give with intentionality, and when someone assumes to know my motives, they are closing the door to my heart, not opening it.
If God has blessed a person, we need to trust that God’s wisdom is working in that person’s life.
Reality #4: Accountability is healthy in any giving context.
I couldn’t tell you the number of emails I’ve received (at least 2-3 a week) to send money to a random bank account for xyz.
I believe stewardship extends beyond what we earn and includes what we give. To be wise with the funds we have includes being wise with how we give our money. Each year, my wife and I decide what organizations and individuals we’ll give to. Then through the year we’re always open to new needs and God’s working. But whatever we give to includes some level of accountability. I think that makes God smile, not want to curse a person.
However, that also excludes giving to anyone who is not accountable for the funds they receive.
There is a desperate need in this world for things like food, health services, and education. My heart does hurt for the suffering of fellow man. If you are in a position of need, you are more than welcome to ask the body of Christ to help. If, however, an individual says no, you must recognize that it may be because they are involved in other good works in the Kingdom of God.