No, this is not a math class, but it is about priorities. Larry Burkett, Ron Blue and Dave Ramsey have spoken to a basic principle for years with regards to spending and budgeting: Money should follow priorities. Let’s consider how Alabama Baptists are doing with this principle.
The 2013 audit of the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions (SBOM) was approved recently by our trustees, and the audit does reflect the priorities of Alabama Baptists! Just look at the numbers:
10 — The North American Mission Board (NAMB) receives gifts from Alabama Baptist churches through the SBOM. In 2013, Alabama Baptists supported NAMB through the Cooperative Program, Annie Armstrong, NAMB Designated and World Hunger gifts. All totaled, NAMB received $9,781,685 from Alabama Baptists in 2013. When one includes gifts sent from Alabama Baptist churches directly to NAMB the total is more than $10 million.
20 — Alabama Baptists also send through the SBOM gifts that are given to the International Mission Board (IMB) in the categories of Cooperative Program, Lottie Moon, IMB Designated and World Hunger. These gifts totaled $20,600,720 in 2013. This total does not include gifts sent from our churches directly to IMB.
30 — So, $9,781,685 + $20,600,720 = $30,382,405 The SBOM forwarded over $30 million, on behalf of our Alabama Baptist churches, to the two SBC mission boards in 2013.
I am sure that the two mission boards are grateful for the support of Alabama Baptists.
Can I give you one other number? $66,601,943 is the total amount of mission gifts sent by Alabama Baptists through the SBOM in 2013. That number represents Cooperative Program giving, special mission offerings, disaster relief offerings, Children’s Homes gifts, associational missions support, World Hunger and other miscellaneous categories. Now, you do the math: 30,382,405 divided by 66,601,943 = ??????
The answer is 45.6%! Of all the dollars sent through the SBOM in 2013 by Alabama Baptist churches, 45.6% of those funds went to the two SBC mission boards. In my rural Alabama upbringing, that is putting your money where your mouth is! That is allowing your priorities to guide your spending. That is why I love being an Alabama Baptist. Our people talk about missions, pray for missions, physically go in support of missions and give sacrificially to send others on mission. It is all in the math! Well, not really. It is all in the HEART!
Bobby DuBois serves as associate executive director as well as director of Finance & Facility Services at the SBOM.