November 14, 2012

How Did North Point Raise $1.5 Million in a Day?


As part of their How To Be Rich series, North Point Ministries took up a one-day offering of $1.5 million to serve the poor and under-resourced in the Atlanta community and around the world. 11 Alive News, a local CBS affiliate, featured the church’s extravagant generosity.

As I watched the video, I noticed 11 facts about North Point Ministries as they created a culture of generosity. I am sure there are more, but this is what I gleaned from the news feature.

Preach a financial sermon series.

Andy Stanley preaches on money. Jesus spoke about money and possessions more than love and prayer combined. Churches that do not teach sound biblical financial principles will have no chance of creating a culture of generosity.

Make giving easy.

Did you notice the large number of people with “Be Rich” t-shirts taking payments throughout the facility? North Point created dozens of on-ramps for people to practice generosity.

Make giving digital.

People were allowed to give via their cell phones, iPads, and credit cards. People rarely carry cash. Churches that only pass plates are passing plates to people who largely have no money. 

Develop partnerships.

North Point is partnering with 24 charities in the Atlanta area to more effectively deliver help and healing to those in need in our community. This gives donors the confidence that the church will be good stewards of their resources.  

Be patient. Creating a generous culture takes time.

The natural default mode of many is to be greedy rather than generous. It takes time to develop a generous culture. This is the fifth year North Point has been doing this generosity initiative. Two years ago the amount given was $250,000. This year it was $1.5 million. Do not give up on generosity initiatives too quickly.

Expand the worldview of those in your church.

“By the world’s standard, if we have more than we need we are rich.” It is very easy for us to only see our own little world.

Everyone counts, so include them.

I noticed what appeared to be single moms, married couples, and people of all ages practicing generosity.

Communicate Return-on-Investment.

Generosity blesses the giver more than anyone else. Jamie Albright said it best when she stated, “We worry about little things in life and there are people who worry about putting dinner on the table so we have a lot more than we realize in this world. And I just love to give.”

People who rarely wait for anything will wait in line to be generous.

North Point is in an extremely wealthy area of Atlanta. Many wealthy people hate waiting. Seen anyone in First Class at an airport lately? However, the news reporter pointed out that it took a long time for many to give because of North Point’s large audience. However, “no one was in a hurry to leave the church.” It is a sign that God has moved in the hearts of people when wealthy people will joyfully wait patiently in line to sacrifice to meet the needs of the poor, under-resourced, and devalued in their communities.

Focus on others.

“It’s not an opportunity to get rich, but to be rich toward others.” North Point has always been a church focused on the spiritual and felt-needs of those outside of their church walls. The people of North Point simply put their treasure where their heart is.

Communicate the compelling need.

Foster care. Shelter for the homeless. Rebuild inner-city schools. Healthcare. When a compelling need is placed before those in our churches, they will respond in a sacrificial manner.

Pastors and church leaders, what is one thing you learn from North Point’s one-day offering that you can implement this weekend?

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