How to Make Budget in Less Than Two Minutes

How to Make Budget in Less Than Two Minutes

Are we headed for a recession? Mark Brooks, The Stewardship Coach, gives his answer to that question in his column of this edition, saying, “My view is that recession or not, we are in for a challenging year for giving.” As a result, we at the Journal have been writing issues around budget planning with this in mind. Our focus has been on helping you set a realistic and achievable budget. In this post, we want to highlight how you can hit and exceed that budget number in less than two minutes.

How could making your budget be accomplished in less than two minutes? Use your offering time to connect the vision that drives your budget to giving. People give to life change, not hitting some number on your spreadsheet. By changing how we take up our offerings, we can better ensure those line items on your spreadsheet are met. Mark Brooks wrote on this recently saying…

“The most important thing you can do to increase giving at your church is to change how you take up your offerings. Yet tragically, the offering time has been one of the most neglected parts of worship. Now, post-Covid, many churches have stopped taking a physical offering, and many seldom mention giving. Church leaders spend more time planning out and executing the announcement time than they make the offering. It is no wonder giving and givers are on a decline.” Read more at:

This poses a few questions.

First, how will we teach stewardship if churches stop passing an offering? Even before the pandemic, church engagement had fallen to all-time lows. The average church member pre-Covid spent only an hour to an hour and a half a week at church, including worship time. We must admit that we now have one hour a week to disciple most of our people. Downplaying the offering time, or eliminating it, churches will raise a generation ignorant of the biblical principles of stewardship. Both church and church members will suffer.

Here is another question? Why do we give more time to announcements than we do the offering? Nowhere in Scripture will you find announcements, but the offering is mentioned often as a key part of worship. If you spend more time planning out and executing the announcement time over the offering, you shouldn’t wonder why meeting your budget is a challenge.

Our final question hits at the heart of the issue. Why have we neglected the offering time? Today most would answer due to Covid. Yet, the CDC has stated the virus doesn’t spread through surface contact. So, Covid isn’t the reason for stopping passing the plate. In our experience, most who have stopped offering times do so by mistakenly assuming that any money talk will drive guests away. That has not been our experience. We believe that it is not that we talk about money that turns people off but how we talk about it. When you make the offering time meaningful and worshipful, you will find that people won’t complain that you are asking them to give. This leads to our final point.

Plan out every Sunday offering, all 52 a year. Use your staff or Finance Team to help you plan and execute a positive focus on stewardship and giving in two minutes or less. Here are some key elements to think of…

  • You want to teach the value of biblical stewardship. Nothing says it better than Scripture!
  • You want to inform your donors of what you are doing.
  • You want to inspire them by what you are doing.
  • You want to show them that their generosity makes a difference.
  • Share with them about the multiple ways they can give.
  • And, most importantly, you want to thank them for their generosity.

We provide you with the tools and resources to accomplish the above. Here is a list of resources to help take your offering to another level.

First, start here with the Stewardship Journal. Each copy contains articles on giving and a Mission and Ministry Moment written to give you ideas on improving that week’s offering time. We archive all copies here at

Next, check out our Cooperative Program resource page on our MBC website. Here you will find multiple resources from print to video. These tools will help keep your offering time fresh and interesting to attendees. These tools are a great positive way to teach stewardship in two minutes or less. To access the site, go to:

We know that your giving can be increased in two minutes or less when we treat the offering as an act of worship. Change your attitude and approach to the offering time, and you will improve your chances of making your budget this year and in the following years.

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