Live Gratefully

Give Generously  

excerpts from:                      "WHY WE GIVE"  

                             by Bishop Michael J. Coyner

Every day it seems our mailbox is filled with appeals from groups and ministries and missions requesting that we give to support their good work. All of that is good and helpful, but most of their requests do not speak to the reason why my wife, Marsha, and I give. So perhaps this list of “why we give” might be helpful to others who are contemplating their giving.

We give out of gratitude to God. We are not really that motivated by giving to institutions (although we do) or by giving to special needs (although we do) or by giving to missional efforts (although we do). No, our primary motivation for giving is to express our gratitude to God. We believe that everything we have is a gift from God, so we give because we are grateful.

We tithe as a witness to our faith. We tithe to the church, and we give to support various appeals and mission efforts. Our primary giving is our tithe, because we believe that tithing is obedience to God and a witness to our faith in God.

We give because we believe that the secret to living is giving. Giving is what life is about – giving our love, our prayers, our support, our material gifts, our efforts, etc. Life is meant to be lived, shared and generously multiplied. God has designed life in such a way that when try to hold onto life, we lose it but when we give life away, we receive life in more abundance.

We give because it is fun, and joyful, and fulfilling. There is nothing quite like giving to someone or to some cause and seeing the joy that our gifts can create. That is most obvious when we give to our children and grandchildren, but it is true in other situations, too. Giving is fun. I know that might sound a little selfish, but it is true. We give because we enjoy it.

We give when we see needs and want to help. This is where all of those appeals are effective – we look over the requests and appeals that we receive, and when we see a need we can help, then we give to it.

As I began to mature in my own giving and in my understanding of stewardship. I began to ask people to give out of gratitude to God and as a witness to their faith. And that freed me from any sense of being a “salesman” for our church to being one who proclaimed the spiritual truth about stewardship. I moved from fund-raising to stewardship-proclaiming. I focused less upon the need to balance our church budget, and more upon the need to balance our lifestyles. And the results were even more effective in terms of dollars but also in terms of joyful satisfaction.

You are welcome to give for almost any good reason. Whatever appeals to you is great, because I believe that any person of faith must be a giver. That’s the secret to living – it is all about giving. And it is all about gratitude to God.

So, please give.

Bishop Michael J. Coyner, Indiana Annual Conference



Prayer brings us close to God so that through that relationship we might increasingly reflect God’s love in our lives. To find out more or become apart of a prayer group, contact:


Your presence through worship, learning and fellowship are centering places for the church to become part of the community.


Tithing and other proportional giving are spiritual disciplines that help us put God first in our lives. It is right to give back to God what is rightful HIS. Find out more click here or click on on-line giving above.


Everyone has special God-given talents. You can be the hands and feet of Jesus when you use your special gifts to meet a need. At Aldersgate you can find a place to share no matter your level of skill, time availability or spiritual development.


As United Methodists we are all called to extend God’s love to others and share our faith.

If you would like more information or would like to become involved in one of Aldersgate's many ministries, contact the church office at 919-477-0509 - or