Planning a budget is always a difficult thing for churches and organizations. It can bring out all sorts of tension, especially between numbers people (typically accountants) and big vision people (typically vision castors of the organization). The accountants often need a little more faith while the big vision people need a leash put around their neck.
Before your next budget cycle, consider Bill Bright as told by Steve Shadrach:
Each director laid out to the others what he or she believed God wanted to do through their particular ministry the next 12 months. No one was allowed to mention how much different programs might cost until after they had prayed, discussed, and agreed on the overall Crusade ministry plan for the upcoming year. Then, and only then, did they start attaching price tags. Afterward, Dr. Bright would draw a line under the total and say something like, “Here is what we believe God wants us to do throughout the world this next year. The total is $246 million. Now let’s trust Him and go out and raise those funds to fulfill this vision.”
Do you see the difference? Budget pulls one train, vision the other. One way is focused on what things cost, the other on how to fulfill the mission. Sometimes a person will ask me how much a certain project or equipment or materials or training costs, and I’ll shoot back, “It doesn’t matter, because we’re going to spend whatever it takes to fulfill God’s calling for our ministry."
Shadrach, Steve (2011-03-25). ViewPoints: Fresh Perspectives on Personal Support Raising (pp. 17-18). The Bodybuilders Press.
Darren Carlson is the Founder and President of Training Leaders International. As President, Darren oversees the general direction of the ministry and serves as an advocate for pastors with little access to formal training and thoughtful cross-cultural theological engagement. You can connect with him on Facebook and Twitter.