10 Ways God Provides – Part 2
God is bigger than money. God is our provider. While God may choose to use money as part of His provisions for us, He is much bigger than money and He has many ways He provides. Over the years in Christian leadership I have discovered at least 10 ways God provides for ministries and churches. On Monday, I discussed the first five:
- Donations and Offerings
- Fees, Sales, Products and Services
- Reviewing Your Spending Patterns
- Savings, Special Accounts, Investments and Assets
Today I wrap up with the remaining five ways God provides:
6. De-Accumulate and De-Clutter
In visiting many ministries and churches over the years, I am frequently shocked and saddened by the amount of accumulated resources, materials, electronics, old files, and equipment laying around unused, broken, or in disrepair. It’s as if there is some unwritten rule that once something has been given to a ministry, no one can ever get rid of it.
When my children were growing up and their rooms got messier and messier, I used to give them three garbage bags and I would send them into their rooms with the instructions to “touch everything in the room” and (1.) Put it away, or (2.) Put it in the “throw away” bag, (3) Put it in the “give away” bag, or (4) Put it in the “sell away” bag. Most ministries and churches (and people!) should conduct an employee annual use-it-or-lose-it day and clear out the clutter and junk that has accumulated over the years.
Ultimately, your greatest asset is the people that God sends to help your ministry. Your board members, leaders, staff, volunteers, donors, and vendors are what truly make your ministry work. God’s greatest provisions are the people he sends you! Once a ministry I led was building a million dollar building and a donor friend gave us a $30,000 Challenge Grant. He promised to give $100 for every day a tradesman came and volunteered to help us. When it was all over, we had over 500 days of donated labor from skilled tradesmen that came from 5 states.
The value of their donated labor would be worth $300,000 to $400,000 today. All from one $30,000 donor who wanted to motivate tradesmen to help our ministry. Our ministry also had a dentist who donated all of his time to care for the 50 staff adults and their children associated with our ministry. A friend of the ministry donated his company’s printing services and saved us over $40,000 each year. These were real provisions, from real people, sent from a real God.
8. Equipment, Materials and Resources
What is a need you have right now? God can provide the money for the item, or he may choose to provide the actual item. One time the camp ministry where I worked needed a $15,000 septic pump. How do you raise money for a septic pump? Hard to do! So, I contacted the Connecticut offices of the Swedish company that manufactured the pump and asked them if they could donate or discount the price of the pump we needed. They decided to donate the $15,000 septic pump!
I have made the same kind of requests of companies that produced power equipment, electronics, doors, windows, roofing, furniture, HVAC units, flooring, and much more. Again and again, I saw God provide from total strangers as God gave the ministry I was involved favor in their sight.
9. Assets, Property and Estate Gifts
In God’s sovereignty, He can release resources and assets into your ministry from many different people and places. One day I received an unexpected phone call from a man I had never met. He wanted to donate his late mother’s large house to our church so we could use it furloughing missionaries and other people needing short-term housing. The house was valued at over $400,000 and his sister completely furnished the entire house with $50,000 in furnishing.
Over the years, this Hospitality House has been used by the Lord to benefit countless number of people who arrived only with only suitcases in their hands to stay at the house free for one to12 months as part of God’s provisions in their lives.
10. Miraculous Provision
And lastly, sometimes God will surprise you with provisions that only He knew existed. Isaiah 45:3 says, “I will give you hidden treasures, riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the LORD, the God of Israel, who summons you by name.” I have been amazed over the years the many times God has chosen to uniquely provide a specific item, to meet a specific need, and at a specific time.
Truly, God is our provider and He is bigger than money. Where He guides, He provides. What He orders, He pays for!
-- Brian Kluth