By Henry Blackaby (Submitted by Al Blevins)
When the World's Fair was coming to Vancouver, our association of churches was convinced that God wanted us to try to reach the 22 million people that would come to the fair. We had about 2000 members in our association's churches in greater Vancouver. How in the world could 2000 people make a great impact on such a mass of tourists from all over the world?
Two years before the fair, we began to set our plans in motion. The total income for our whole association was $9000. The following year our income was about $16,000. The year of the World's Fair we set a budget for $202,000. We had commitments that would probably provide 35% of the budget. 65% of that budget was dependent on prayer. Can you operate a budget on prayer? Yes. But when you do that, you are attempting something only God can do. What do most of us do? We set the practical budget, which is the total of what we can do. Then we set a hope or faith budget. The budget we really trust and use, however, is the one we can reach by ourselves. We do not really trust God to do anything.
As an association of churches, we decided that God had definitely led us to the work that would cost $202,000. That became our operating budget. All of our people began praying for God to provide and do everything we believed He had led us to do during the World's Fair. At the end of the year, I asked our treasurer how much money we had received. From Canada, the United States, and other parts of the world we had received $264,000. People from all over came to assist us. During the course of the fair, we became a catalyst to see almost 20,000 people come to know Jesus Christ. You cannot explain that except in terms of God's intervention. Only God could have done that. God did it with a people who had determined to be servants who were moldable and remained available for the Master's use.
"I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing" John 15:5.
Each month the Finance Committee seeks to include an encouraging article on stewardship. If you find an encouraging article on stewardship, please consider forwarding the article to our Finance Committee Chair, Debby Hunt at email@example.com.