Questions & Answers
Contention over financial gift to the church
Dear Jim, I find myself in the middle of a giant quarrel within a small church concerning the gift of a large sum of money to us from a departed saint. Her will was specific and it seems that her son is determined that the church will not use these funds for "other" needs, though the powers that be are just as determined that it be spread around in spots that they determine are a need. Struggle has always been our middle name. I am new to the scene, and can clearly see both sides of this. I am trying to remain aloof, though many are trying to convince me to take "their side" of this situation. I've been told that every time our church has been given a surprise funding, a quarrel has resulted. Is this a natural form of contention among Christ's workers? Anonymous
Hello my friend!
I'd say it's more of a natural form of contention among INSTITUTIONAL workers, Christ has nothing to do with it.
There are always "righteous" or "justifiable" reasons behind most contentions and arguments. If those in the religious organization follow the same basic principles found in the world, guess where they learned it? Not from Christ, that's for sure.
The fact that the deceased woman made sure to specify in her will as to how she wanted the money used suggests that she was well-aware of the greed. I wouldn't be surprised if mom asked her son to make sure her wishes were carried out. It's a shame she didn't just make her will so that the money would be given without the church's aid.
Maybe she did it through the church because she felt obliged to do so, but maybe she did it so that the spirit of the group would be made known for what it is. Either way, the group has divided itself over money. I doubt she would have been surprised.
Money is not the problem, it only makes the problem known. Where is Christ and the freedom he brought in all this contention? I doubt the expression of his life shows in either of the "sides". Your group is being presented with another large opportunity to recognize how the workings of the flesh through the law (contention, argument, quarrels) so easily overshadow the reality of true life in Christ.
It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery. Galatians 5:1
Thanks for the insight, Jim. (the deceased) would agree, I'm certain.