Posted on : Wednesday April 1, 2009

By David Lee, BCM/D Executive Director

More than ever our focus has turned to “return on investment.” The economic downturn has forced us to re-evaluate our priorities and make sure that our spending is in line with what makes the biggest difference.

As a result we examine more carefully and hold to a higher standard of accountability those areas where we make investments these days. That is not a bad thing. Ongoing evaluation is a good thing for us in every area of our lives. Too often in times when the pressure is low, we are prone to float. Things that feel urgent begin to replace things that are really important.“First things, really important things,” can get displaced by less important things just because we can “afford” to add other things to the agenda. Yet, when the pressure is on and times get tough, we are forced to reassess, re-evaluate, and make some hard choices about our investments.

Churches face the same challenge. I have been listening to pastors and other church leaders. Many of you have shared with me the challenge you face of re-evaluating what you do in light of the economic climate.

I want you to know that I am praying for you and your church. I know these are difficult times.

I am praying that God will give us faith. Difficult times remind us that we are not in control. Such times re-introduce us to the reality that we are indeed dependent upon God.

I am praying for boldness. There is a delicate balance between the exercise of wise stewardship and bold discipleship. One of my concerns has been that God’s people will retreat from the battle in search of a more comfortable place.

I am praying for wisdom. There is no doubt that choices are going to have to be made. All of us hope that these are short-term adjustments. No one knows except God. In the meantime, I pray that God will help us be discerning as we set priorities and as we evaluate what we are to do and be as the Great Commission people of God.

Inside this issue you will find a report highlighting the “return on investment” that you have made through the Cooperative Program. I hope you will display the poster in your church. If you have questions, call me. And by all means, if I can assist you as you journey through these interesting and challenging times, please give me that opportunity.