by Jac La Tour

True confession: I am not in favor of online giving, at least for tithing. Haven’t always felt this way, though. For years I was frustrated with my church for not “keeping up with the times” and offering electronic giving. I even went as far as using it as an excuse for my lack of consistent giving because, really, who can remember to write a check before rushing out the door Sunday morning? 

But then I had a change of heart. I remembered that giving is an act of worship, not something to cross off my to-do list while paying the bills. And Sunday mornings are for worship. Every part of the church service is designed with one purpose: to bring honor and glory to God—even, perhaps especially, in our tithes and offerings. Since when is convenience part of sacrifice? 

Now, I know others who tithe electronically and are still intentional about making it worshipful. And I know worship is certainly not limited to Sunday morning church. And I certainly understand the upside of online giving (in fact, my post on May 18 talked about how the majority of people, regardless of age, prefer to donate online). 

I’m simply saying that, perhaps, when it comes to giving back to God what is his, worship through giving is better suited in the context of a worship service rather than at a computer screen. 

What do you think?

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  1. I used to feel the same way. Of course now that I am in the business of helping ministries with their online giving I am a bit biased. But I still see your point. I also look at it this way. Just like there was a point when churches had to move away from candles to electricity I’m sure lost some of the worshipful mood. And, the convenience of checks overtook cash. Churches, just like other organizations have had to keep up with the times. Now I see online giving as an opportunity for outreach and teaching. For instance… The younger generation, which I no longer fit into, tends to not carry cash or even open checking accounts. Ask them to write a check you may as well ask them if you can borrow an album. They use their debit card for everything. If we as a church don’t offer them an avenue to tithe their way then we miss out on the opportunity to teach them the biblical principles of tithing and the missed opportunity for them to practice those principles.



  2. Great message and really has me thinking. Seems that we have to think out of the box and find a new way of acknowledging financial giving as a part of worship. I agree it is extremely important that we teach the connection!!

    Thanks for your article.

  3. But how about this? My church places an “e-coupon” in the pews so that those who gave on line, can fill one out and place it in the offering plate as it goes by. Of course, the accounting office already has a record of their giving, but it does provide the giver an opportunity to put something into the plate and participate on Sunday in the act of worship. I think it’s a creative response to this concern. Linden Kirby

  4. I used to share your current opinion but for my husband and me, the worship comes when we annually, through prayer, commit a percentage of our God-given resources to the ongoing ministries of our church then set up our weekly online giving amount for the year. We continue to worship God day by day as we continually steward our entrusted resources so that we are able to honor that weekly commitment. Online giving is, of course, convenient but also provides the ability for us to give consistently from the first dollars we receive. We also get to worship every time our church has a special offering and we give during the service. I do agree that financial giving is a worship experience and love that our church worships with weekly communion and with weekly giving.

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