Stewardship Book Review: The Uncommon Leader

Rich Church, Poor Church by J. Clif Christopher is a compelling book that presents realistic concepts about practices of financial stewardship. The author notes that successful nonprofits know and utilize these concepts; in other words, rich churches do and poor churches do not. He implores churches to make a thorough analysis of their stewardship financial practices and to make changes.

Truthfully, I found a couple of aspects of the book troubling. In several places, the author makes reference for the practice of altar calls to become “born again;” Lutherans are saved at baptism. But, I simply ignored that as it appeared, because when I contemplated the rest of the written words, I found the ideas and comments on stewardship to be spot on. The book has good solid ideas about how to best manage the aspect of financial stewardship. He also makes some strong persuasion for the practice of tithing.

The emphasis was that giving always comes back to mission. The author makes it clear that the church must have a clear mission, understand what that means in it practices, and how that’s the important key if a church is to become a “rich church.” He offers some advice about how to achieve financial health and how that is one and the same with spiritual wholeness.

I think this is a worthy read for every church, especially with follow-up discussion to consider the concepts.

– Jeanine Mohr, member, Nebraska Synod Stewardship Table