When I first started to teach prosperity 38 years ago, I really did not know enough to teach it, but I did not let that stop me. (What was that about “fools rush in where angels fear to tread”?)
I began my classes with something like, “I really do not know if these principles of prosperity work or not, but I am going to test them in my own life. I invite you to join me and let us take this journey of exploration together.”
And so began my grand adventure … to prove the spiritual principles of tithing, forgiving, setting goals, and getting on purpose with my life.
Perhaps you are led to begin teaching prosperity in your church or center. Please do. Anyone can teach it and live it. You are exactly the right person. Go for it!
Here’s what I did. I knew I needed help. So I first began by organizing a class based upon one of Catherine Ponder’s magnificent books. She is so clear and easy to read, and she gives the reader tasks and affirmations and tells wonderful stories.
I would make up handouts based on the chapters we were studying that week, and assign the class a task, asking them to share their experiences at the next class. One task I remember giving was for the class members to clean out their closets and take the clothes they didn’t wear anymore to a charity such as Salvation Army or Goodwill.
The next week, I might assign the task of doing at least one good deed each day, writing a letter of forgiveness, or setting three goals they would like to accomplish this year.
Responses in the following classes were exciting and uplifting as participants began to discover the joy of giving and sharing.
The idea of tithing then became easy to bring into the class discussion. Since it was a relatively new practice for me, I was able to share some of the blessings that I was receiving. I noticed an immense expansion of my faith. Mr. Fillmore says that when we begin to tithe, our faith is increased one hundred-fold. That was my experience.
At each class, we took time for sharing, for questions, for doubts, for fears to be expressed. And all along the way, I shared my journey.
And I am still learning, teaching and sharing this profound and powerful truth: “It is the Father’s good pleasure to give us the kingdom.”
Suggestions for Building a Prosperity Consciousness in Your Ministry
1. Remember: God is our Source (not the congregation).
2. When receiving the offering, make it an act of worship. This is not a time for announcements. Soft music and reverence are appropriate as we give back to God with gratitude for all the good in our lives. Ask your ushers not to say “Thank you” to those who give. They are not giving to the ushers. They are giving to God. Ask the ushers to be “invisible” as they receive the offerings.
3. Please do not call the offering a “collection.”
4. Use beautiful baskets or plates instead of the small little bags, so that congregants can see the abundance.
5. Call newcomers “first-timers” rather than “guests” or “visitors.”
6. Let the congregants know the financial status of the ministry. You could publish income and expenses in the bulletin or place on the bulletin board.
7. Ask a board member to share his or her prosperity journey at a worship service once in a while.
8. Don’t let the budget determine your vision. God provides.
9. Give your minister a raise.
10. Give appreciation publicly in a service for outstanding volunteers and helpers.
11. Make sure your property is clean and neat. Fix or throw away broken items.
12. Acknowledge your board members in a worship service 3 or 4 times a year.
13. When desiring more volunteers, rather than saying “We need someone,” say instead, “Here is an opportunity to serve.”
14. Give everyone you can a job at the church. This gives them ownership. Make up jobs if you need to. People love to serve.
15. As a minister or church leader, take good care of yourself. Delegate what you do not want to do. Give yourself time to play, relax, or sit on a rock and think of God.