The Box in the Back.
When Laurie and I were missionaries in Russia, we watched the Russian economy collapse. We saw families try to survive 2,000 percent inflation while we lived in Moscow.
An important part of our walk with God is how we use the resources He has entrusted to us—and in teaching God’s word to that newly planted church, we wanted to share this principle. The difficulties of Russian life at that time, however, really left us in a quandary. How could we teach people about giving, as God would have us, during such a terrible economic season? We sensed God leading us to put a box out to receive any offerings the new Russian believers wanted to give. This would allow them to give secretly— so whether it was a Kopec, a single Ruble, or thousands of Ruble, the amount was only for them and God to know. God blessed the idea, and the Russians learned to give as they were able.
When we planted this fellowship 20 years ago, we sensed from the Lord that we should do the same thing here in Pennsylvania. So we put out a cheap plastic box, which served the purpose for years until a brother in the church made us this beautiful wooden box for the job. To this day, we have never passed a plate or taken a formal offering. God has provided for all of this fellowship’s needs through that box in the back.
In the last few years, we have had more and more requests for a way to give to the ministry electronically. These requests have continued to come in as fewer people use paper checks in the mail or at church.
With the update of the website, we have decided to add this provision. However, as always, we do so with the same encouragement that is etched into the box in the back:
“Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.” - 2 Corinthians 9:7.
- Pastor Chris Swansen