50 Ways for Church Leaders to be Generous

by GenerousChurch  |  June 13, 2013

When it comes to serving others, Andy Stanley says, “Do for one what you wish you could do for all.”  In other words, you’ll never be able to give as much as you want to give.  But, don’t let the fear of being unfair stop you.  Serve someone.  Give what you can.  Practice generosity when it’s possible. 

Not only is it good for the one that you serve, but it’s also good for you.

In fact, Jesus said that the way to become great is by being a servant.  The way to approach life is with an open hand – going the extra mile, turning the other cheek, giving without expecting anything in return.

If you are a church leader, it is especially critical for you to model a lifestyle of generosity for your people.  Let them see you give.  Encourage them to follow your generosity as you follow the generosity of Christ.  And the more generous your church community becomes, the more you will expose the ways of God.

With that in mind, here are 50 ways to start living generously toward your church community:

  1. Send notes of encouragement
  2. When people come to see you, give them your full attention for as long as they need you
  3. Anonymously pay for someone to go on a mission trip
  4. Send a gift card to volunteers
  5. Take a family or individual to lunch
  6. Volunteer your time in the nursery or in a more engaged role during VBS
  7. Call someone simply to say “thanks”
  8. When someone compliments you on something you have, give it to them
  9. Organize a day of free oil changes for single moms in the church
  10. Make yourself accessible by keeping regular office hours and engaging online
  11. Brag about someone while they are present
  12. Adopt a military family while the spouse is away on assignment
  13. Lend a patient ear – some people are desperate to be heard
  14. Mow the yard of someone who is sick or hurting
  15. Go an entire week without speaking negatively about others
  16. Ask, “How can I help you?” and follow through
  17. Say “Yes” for an entire day to every request for assistance
  18. Take a meal to a shut-in and stay to eat with them
  19. Go to the soccer fields or to baseball practice and hand out free water bottles to the parents
  20. Speak to people in a way that affirms their dignity and supports their self-worth
  21. Model Philippians 2 humility
  22. Engage with people who cannot help you in any way
  23. Be on time – or early – for meetings and appointments so that others don’t have to wait on you
  24. Let the church see you or your family contribute financially to the church
  25. Carry some cash so that you can give spontaneously
  26. Be generous when you have to let someone go or have to reassign them to other tasks
  27. Praise and affirm your lay leaders
  28. Acknowledge – in person – someone who has given generously to the church without any expectation of more giving.
  29. Intentionally encourage and equip other churches in your city or neighborhood
  30. Look for people who are alone and introduce them to others that are around
  31. Send personal notes to the church’s military members who are overseas
  32. Give the church janitor or groundskeeper 3-4 hours off while you perform their duties
  33. Honor and affirm some of the “less honorable” people in your church
  34. For a period of time, give away the money you would have spent eating out to a mission cause within the church
  35. For a period of time, give away the money you would have spent eating out to a cause that a church member is passionate about
  36. Along with your spouse, take some of the children of the church out for ice cream
  37. Deliver more than you promised (go the extra mile simply out of kindness)
  38. Send one email a day for a week with links to great, free, online resources (books, Craigslist give away’s, etc.)
  39. Open your home for a youth event or small group meeting
  40. Offer a ride to a friend while his car is in the shop
  41. Use your social media influence to help someone raise funds or complete a project
  42. Invite someone new-to-the-area to celebrate Thanksgiving or Christmas with your family
  43. Shoot a short video of appreciation for your staff and promote it through YouTube
  44. Let them win (when it’ s not critical to the health of the church, let someone else have their way…even though you disagree with them)
  45. Train someone to replace you
  46. Go out of your way to help someone find a job and land an interview
  47. When someone asks to borrow your (tool, book, etc.) give it to them for keeps
  48. Share your sources – don’t hoard great teaching resources that may help others grow
  49. When someone asks for prayer, stop and pray with them immediately
  50. Smile often

What would you add?  If you have practiced generosity toward your church members and seen impacting results, let us know what you did.

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