I brainstormed a few possibilities about the fearful giver while thinking about my upcoming sermon series on Faithfulness and Covenant. Please add things I might not have thought of.
In no particular order:
--if we are angry come-outers from another tradition,
will we be deceived here?
--if we live at a fixed income,
will our giving generously cut into our ability to live comfortably?
--if we give to many causes,
is our congregation as worthy as the other causes we support?
--if we need companionship and connection,
will we find it here?
--if we have spent foolishly in the past,
will we be spending foolishly here?
--if we have been wounded by money in some way,
will that happen to us here?
--if we are generous,
will we set a standard that we may not be able to live up to later?
Many people, not just UUs, are fearful, not cheerful, givers. They may have grown up in a culture of scarcity because of the Depression, family patterns, Me First-ness, and a host of other reasons.
Instead of scolding them for their fear, it seems to me better to understand it and encourage them to deal with it effectively. I think people want to be generous but are afraid.