How to Release a Spirit of Generosity in Your House Church


We moved around the room silently. One person was given a watch. Graciously receiving it, he silently prayed. Should he keep it or pass it on to someone else? Another person turned to his neighbor, he gave him a newly purchased jacket. The power of generosity was being released in the room as we did a giving exercise.

Generosity breaks the curse of poverty over our lives. It’s also a sign of revival. We help new disciples be free from constant physical needs by training them to give to others.

In the early church, an unusual spirit of giving was evident. Though many early believers were not wealthy, they gave to the church (via the apostles) and to one another in what can only be described as extreme generosity.

“All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need.”

Acts 2:44-45

What Does This Mean for Disciple-making Movements?

As groups of disciples form, they must be trained to practice regular giving. It is a command of Jesus, and is key to developing unity, love, and selflessness in a disciple’s life.

Some may associate the taking of offerings and tithes with traditional building churches. In DMMs, when the Discovery Bible Study or T4T groups transition from seeker groups into house churches, regular giving can also begin.

When Do You Start?

After people in the group have committed their lives to Christ, and have followed Him in water baptism, the group becomes a simple church. At that point, go through a Bible study or story where you teach about giving in the New Testament church. When in the course of the study the question, “What we will do to obey?” comes, you can suggest some form of regular giving.

It’s helpful in the early stages of giving to identify specific projects. Buy a drum or a floor mat for the group. Or you could organize an outreach and use the offering for bus fares so everyone can go together.

Consider giving toward projects to help the needy in your community. Some groups have purchased blankets for widows or school uniforms for orphans.


A house church in an Indian slum used offerings to give saris to the widows in their community

As the disciple-making groups learn both the joy and discipline of practicing generosity, the needs of the group members will also be met. The movement will have internally generated funds to use for training, outreach, and other needs. This is far better than raising external support for these things.

DMMs Can Send Out Missionaries

In Disciple-making and Church planting movements, because we’re planting rabbit, not elephant churches, when disciples are trained to give they can quickly support and send out missionaries or apostolic teams. DMM groups usually meet in homes and don’t need expensive buildings. They don’t need to pay full-time pastors. This means they are quickly able to contribute toward Kingdom expansion and missions.

As a movement matures, they can become generous mission-sending movements. Five or ten home groups can easily partner to send out a full-time, cross-cultural worker among the unreached. A growing movement might easily sponsor and send twenty to thirty missionaries.

Does your movement encourage regular, generous giving each time the groups meet? Have you included teaching on tithes and offerings in your disciple-making lessons?

Build Trust

What do you do with offerings taken? Build trust through transparency, openness about the money, and visible projects everyone agrees to.

I would love to hear your questions or comments below, or on the Dmms Facebook group.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *