As I contemplated my first stewardship campaign as a pastor, this little story came to mind: A mother found her young son crying one morning as he was tying his shoes. "Why are you crying?" she asked.
"I have to tie my shoes,' he sobbed.
"But you just learned how. It isn't that hard, is it?"
"But I'm gonna have to do it the rest of my life!" he wailed.
Those were roughly my sentiments. The whole stewardship campaign had been hotly debated by the elders, with the battle lines drawn between the so-called idealists and the so-called hardboiled realists. The idealists saw offering plates and pledge cards as an intrusion into the sanctity and purity of the fellowship. The realists saw it as a like-it-or-not necessity. The idealists were quoting Scripture and saying, "Let God provide." The realists were mixing their Scripture with Benjamin Franklin and saying,
"God helps those who help themselves." The idealists accused the realists of having no faith. The realists accused the idealists of not wanting ...1