Dr. Scott Rodin writes about what financial development should be; joyful ministry. As a former development officer, seminary president and current leader in the stewardship movement, few people are as uniquely experienced to write such a profound story.
This Novelette follows the story of Walt, a VP at a medium-sized Christian nonprofit in Seattle, who is training Carl, his replacement. Carl is a capable fundraiser with a great track record. He is a competitor. He thrives on “closing the deal”. Walt is a real friend to the donors of Hands of Love International (HOLI). He views each interaction with constituents as an opportunity to bless them, not extract from them or financially transact with them.
In their short time together, Walt helps Carl to visit five donors to HOLI. Some donors are mature in their faith and far along in their steward’s journey. Others struggle to see beyond their ownership and control of all that they sit atop. Rodin masterfully paints a picture of how each individual struggles with two-kingdom living versus one-kingdom living. Do we recognize God as owning everything, or do we amass our kingdom and occasionally give to God’s? This fundamental question delves into our understand of our steward relationship with God, ourselves, others and our possessions.
“The conventional wisdom is that ministries need their supporters in order to operate, to exist. We go at our work with this ‘needy’ mindset and treat our supporters as if they only have things to give and we have all of the need. But from a biblical steward’s perspective, the truth is actually the opposite. As God’s people, we are given the privilege and calling to be faithful and wise stewards of what God has given to us. But to do that, we need credible places to give to, ways to invest God’s resources that are both efficient in using money and effective in employing it for kingdom purposes. Without well-run organizations and ministries, it is very hard to be a faithful steward of our funds. And we need people to encourage us in our journey as stewards. When we do our job well, we provide the places and means for God’s people to carry out their calling, to be obedient and faithful in an effective way. And we meet a need they have for someone to walk with them in this stewardship journey. So in truth, our supporters need us and the ministries we represent. That’s why this is ministry and not fundraising.” – Walt, from p.78
This is the seventh book I’ve read by Rodin. It is by far the easiest read; it finished in under two hours. The beauty in The Third Conversion is that it encapsulates rich stewardship theology for which Rodin is known in a practical, entertaining and engaging story. This book is for you if:
- You work for a Christian ministry
- You volunteer for a Christian ministry
- You donate to any organization
You can find more of Dr. Rodin’s works at www.kingdomlifepublishing.com.