In the past election, the economy was a huge factor. We realize that things are difficult for everyone financially. This is why we deeply appreciate the financial support you share with Crossroads on a regular basis. It has always been our commitment to use your dollars in the most effective way possible. We watch the expenses closely and look to get the best value we can.
As most of you know, we provide Financial Peace University on a regular basis. I believe in the program and in the principles that Dave Ramsey teaches. The leadership team has based our stewardship strategy on those principles. We remain dedicated to that strategy. In keeping with that strategy, we have made the following decisions.
1) We have cut staff salaries by $120 per week. It is not something we wanted to do, but the circumstances demanded it. We appreciate the staff and all the hard work they do. They have always gone above and beyond what we have expected.
2) We have indefinitely suspended doing the 3% for debt reduction. Given the current economic situation, we felt that we should be focused on funding our current programing and making our regular mortgage payment. Over one thousand dollars ($1000) of each offering goes just to cover the mortgage payment. The leadership team is still dedicated to reducing our debt. We will be discussing and proposing some future changes to our stewardship strategy in regard to it.
As difficult and challenging as things are financially for us as a congregation, they are even more so for those in our community who are poor. While you and I can financially “tighten our belts”, those who are less fortunate struggle for food, paying basic utilities, and even having gas in their car to go to work. This is where our benevolence ministry “My Brother’s Keeper” is desperately needed.
MBK is funded in several ways. First, it is funded through the two garage sales we have every year. Many of you have generously donated of your time and items for the sales. We also fund it through using the PayLess gift cards. Three percent (3%) of what you put on the card before you shop is donated to the ministry. You can use the gift card to buy groceries and even pay for gas as well.
Another way you can help MBK is to utilize their other program for purchasing gift cards for many popular restaurants and retail stores. These make great Christmas gifts and a percentage of price is given back to help those in need. For example, if you purchase ten $5 Starbucks cards, 10% of your $50 would be given to MBK. See Becky Holladay or Stacy Tilton for a list of merchants that participate in the program or use this link https://www.glscrip.com/downloads/2012giftguides/holiday_gift_guide1.pdf
The final way that we fund My Brother’s Keeper is through the second of our two annual special offerings. On November 18th, the Sunday before Thanksgiving, we will be taking up a special offering and ALL funds received will go to MBK. Remember this is a SPECIAL offering and should be “over and above” your regular tithing and giving to the church. It will NOT include any funds given online through our e-Give system. That means that you must come prepared to give either by a check or cash on that Sunday.
Please pray about this, and seek God’s direction. You folks blew my mind with the record special offering on Easter. I know that even in difficult times, God is still in control. Let your thankfulness and generosity be expressed as you consider how much you should give. As you do that, know this, that the funds you allow God to provide through you will make the difference in someone’s life. It will allow MBK to be the answer to a desperate person’s prayer for assistance.
See You Sunday,