Working Within Your Budget

Even if it doesn't exist

Fiscal year has just begun and you’ve recently learned that your budget is not where it needs to be.  The tendency is to lose hope, and gain anxiety.  To fight that tendency you need a plan.

The plan doesn’t have to be more fundraising.  In fact to maximize your budget and have a financially healthy youth ministry you need to:


If you are unwise with your own money then you cannot expect to be wise with the church’s.  If you are in debt, and not keeping a budget it will reflect in your job.

There are several resources you can use from Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University to finding someone in your church who will coach you for free.  If you show others that you are financially responsible they’ll trust you with money.


If you want to increase the budget you need to increase the giving.  The most effective giving is the tithe and that’s because it’s God’s idea (Malachi 3:10).  Tithing will not only help your church it will teach teens that nothing is more important than God.

Schedule a message series or workshop where you talk to teens about tithing.  Make a part of your program an offertory where teens can practice giving.  Weave it into your culture so they develop this important spiritual habit.


We as youth ministers fall victim to “Keeping Up With The Joneses”  We want the giant bean bag chairs, air hockey table, camp, retreats and all other experiences and stuff the other church down the road has.  The truth is God is giving you what you need right now.

To embrace that learn to say, “No” to some opportunities.  Think outside the box and be creative with what you can do.  Be prudent and again show people how you can be wise with your money.


If you want people pouring into your ministry they need to know why it matters.  Know your vision and share it with as many people as possible.  Make sure teens, parents, leadership, and the average church member know why youth ministry matters.

What you are doing is building a network and creating an opportunity for people to ask, “How can I be a part of this?”  That’s when you can share needs, and goals.


Fundraising can be an excuse for teens not to invest their own money into the youth ministry.  Yes, some teens (And their families) have limited budgets.  But, that’s not a reason to encourage and challenge teens to invest in themselves.

Get teens into the action by asking them to contribute out of their own pockets.  Teach and encourage them to save up and create their own budget.  Show them the reward of saving up for something big.

Develop a plan and own your budget.  Ask God for guidance and surround yourself with wise money managers.  People will notice your prudence and eventually trust you with a larger budget.

Question: How do you increase or maximize your budget?  You can leave a comment by clicking here.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.