This post was originally published by kosypep.
‘Somebody shout praise the lord!!! Now if you know you love Jesus, if he has done something good for you this year come out and donate to the church. If your still in your seat then that means the Lord hasn’t blessed your family. If your seating then you don’t love Jesus. Brethren come out of your seats. ( clapping, singing, dancing). Now the next donation is for the friends of Jesus, if he is your friend come out!!! ( more collections, more singing and dancing).And it goes on and on!
Now am sure many people are wondering why am writing this. And asking some of these questions in ur mind. Is this her first time in a church? Is she a new convert? Etc Well, am not.
Am not here to tell us to stop donating to the church or to stop attending. Am just kinda stating the obvious.Many of us are probably at home with the scenario painted above and we see it as quite normal.
But the question here is how normal should it get?I remember the first time this happened to me. In my second year in school. I sat in the church having exhausted the contents of my wallet already, after about 4 offerings. That day was harvest Sunday, so I was really in the mood of giving to God. I sat there feeling satisfied that I had finally given all I had with a smug smile on my face. Just when I thought the last collection had been made, I heard the man with the microphone shout a very loud praise the Lord and announced that the next offering was for those that have been blessed by the lord and that seating meant you haven’t. I felt so torn. Why didn’t he say that before I emptied my wallet? It even more humiliating that the collection was done seat by seat, so I ended up being the only one that didn’t stand up. I really felt bad, but on my way home it struck me. That I didn’t give that offering wasn’t cos I wasn’t blessed or that I didn’t love God but simply cos I had no money. Lets just say that was a mind opener.
In years to come, I learnt that it was simply a ploy to raise more funds. Nigerian are probably the most religious people in the world. We take it very seriously. But deep down we all know the truth. I guess the Pharisees of the bible will be alarmed at our level of hypocrisy. Twas some months later, when I finally joined the church ushers, that I noticed that the notes dropped in the box were far less than the number of people who stood for the offertory. Guess we all know what that implied.
I am truly suprised that i haven’t gotten used to project Sundays. It’s been years, but i still marvel every Sunday that it’s held. Why have we lost the true meaning of giving? The Christians remember the story of the widow in the bible and the lesson attached to it. It’s not by how much, but by how well. The clergy practically force the money out of our hands. Trophies are even given in some churches for those that donate the most. I thought giving was supposed to be done in secret by the way, there is nothing secret about the giving of today. Rich men struggle to out do themselves, it’s now a competition, to see who loves God the most. It is really sad, the way all we preach is materialism.
It’s everywhere, prayers of anointing to make you richer, personal endorsement from the pastors, excetra. People starve to contribute to buying the pastor a new car, when they can’t even afford transport money for keke. Women outdo themselves to marry young pastors because they are sure of never being hungry again. Young men are springing new churches daily, it’s now all about money money money.
Where is the true sense of worship? I thought Christianity meant being Christ like? Pastors pray for those that give, what about praying more for those who beg on the streets for food. We give to add a golden pillar to the church, what about using the 1 million naira to better the lives of the orphans on the streets. The church is now the main venue for political manifestos, donating and encouraging people to vote for the candidate. Who is fooling who?
The earlier we go back to the drawing board and get things right, the better. Nigerians should understand that money isn’t all that matters and that not having to donate doesn’t mean you love God less. If you have give, if you don’t, no point going stealing just to please your pastor.
But I will add: If you have; you must not give, there is no place in the bible it says you must contribute at every project sunday and if you don’t have; then feel free not to fret at all, there are many more project sundays in future.
Awaiting your thoughts and comments