Monday Morning Insights

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    Church Pays for Couples to Have a Date Night

    Here are the details…

    Pastor announced it during his sermon. Everyone was given a card with the same information on the voucher above and picked one of the 12 pre-selected restaurants (we worked with the restaurant managers to make this simple). People then went to one of the many volunteers in the lobby at multiple stations and exchanged their completed card (contact info and restaurant choice) for a date night envelope containing the voucher and a childcare reimbursement form. The volunteers just made sure to mark the voucher for the restaurant they selected. We then created a master spreadsheet for everyone that signed up and created guest books that we took to the hostesses at all the restaurants and purchased the enough $30 gift cards for all the guests. Couples will now simply go to the restaurant they chose and give the hostess their voucher for their gift card and then send their childcare reimbursement form to the church offices. We set a 2 week window to go on the date to prompt action, limited it to married couples, and told everyone to tip well!

    You can read more here at

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    Chunks Corbett writes, "ast Sunday at Elevation Church we decided to stop telling the married couples of the church to go on a date and actually send them. Pastor has been challenging men over the last few weeks to “date their wives”.

    With the economy hanging on by a thread (at least if you watch the news), we wanted to be proactive and actually remove all excuses. So we gave every married couple the opportunity to get a $30 restaurant gift card and get reimbursed for 3 hrs of childcare...


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    1. Sam on Wed, October 15, 2008

      What an irresponsible stewardship of God’s money and resources. Is this really a function of what a church is called to do?

      Doesnt surprise me though. Just more of the same…..

    2. Mark Triplett on Wed, October 15, 2008

      I’ll agree to disagree with Sam. In recent years we men, me included, have stupidly given up the leadership in our homes.  Sometimes we just need a little shove to get us going to restore our relationship with our wives and pursue them like we did before we got married.

      If we in the church are teaching that the family is the main foundation that our society is built upon, why aren’t we making more opportunities like this available? Something like this make more sense than spending money we don’t have on buildings we don’t necessarily need.

      My church did a variation of the same and provided child care for birth-16 years for folks who wanted to have a date night.

    3. Tommy O'Keefe on Wed, October 15, 2008

      I don’t know about you guys, but I don’t know that my wife would think it a great stride forward in the romance department if I said, “hey look, I’m gettin paid to take you out!”

    4. Brian L. on Wed, October 15, 2008

      Sam, I had an answer all typed out, but then I came to the realization that no answer would satisfy you anyway, so I decided to delete it.

      My heart breaks for you.  I mean that.

    5. Stretch Mark Mama on Wed, October 15, 2008

      Whatever happened to separation of church and date?

    6. Camey on Wed, October 15, 2008

      I listened to the sermon (on-line) in which their Pastor announced it… I stopped and prayed and thanked God for him, the rest of the leadership in that body, and all those couples/families right then and have every day since!

      In this day and age especially - we, as the body, need to support and encourage marriages! And yes… that even includes talking about SEX!

      One of my favorite lines from his sermon, “Wives - if you’re husbands won’t do this - send them to me!” or something along those lines..

      Thank you Elevation church and your Pastor!

    7. Camey on Wed, October 15, 2008

      See how passionate I am about this… your not you’re! lol

      oh… and word I have to enter is “bed21”

    8. Rev. Kareem on Wed, October 15, 2008

      I think this is a creative way of building quality time with husbands and wives… many times churches have their hands stretched out ready to take the people money…but this church chose to extend their hands out to help the people…that’s a great use of stewardship…

      My cousin’s church blesses couples who celebrates marraige anniversaries with a night out… a great way of giving back to the people…

      That’s love for the people…

    9. Josh on Wed, October 15, 2008

      Sure, it’s creative, and there’s nothing “wrong” with it….

      but it just makes me ache, knowing how many people I know in ministry that have taken salary cuts the past few months, because their church can’t afford to pay them.

      I also know that there are people OUTSIDE the church that need a date night even more than those inside the church…

      what a great outreach it would have been for each of those couples to bless their co-workers and neighbors with a “date night” instead of using it for themselves…

      I guess to me it’s kind of “fattening” the flock, rather than chasing down the lost sheep….

    10. Scott Cornthwaite on Wed, October 15, 2008

      While it couldn’t be done often, this is a fantastic idea to help husbands and wives collectively contribute more to their relationships.

      During a prayer week in September, my pastor informed those participating that our church currently had 7 marriages within it who were on the brink of divorce. While this is a church of 3,500 people, it is still shocking at the mount of pain marriage can bring, especially among Christian families.

      Good job with your idea! I hope that God blessed it!

    11. Rev. Kareem on Wed, October 15, 2008

      what about blessing those who has been faithful? I’m sure this chuch has ways of reaching the outside…you also can’t be so focused on the outside that you loose those on the inside…there has to be a balance…

      there are many Christian marraiges that’s just one paycheck from the soup kitchen…and there are many Christian marraiges that’s just one step from divorce…why not step in and lend a helping hand…that’s building Christian Community… that’s building relationships…God blessed this pastor to see the vision of the needs for the people…

      you can’t fault this pastor for enacting off what God has blessed him because there are many churches who can’t afford to pay their clergy…

    12. bobby on Wed, October 15, 2008

      I’m sure those who think it was a bad use of funds would much rather see it go to fight legislation for gay marriage.  Much better to use our money to “protect marriage” by legislating morality than by strengthening our own marriages and changing the divorce stats that are the same in the church right now as they are out.

    13. CS on Wed, October 15, 2008


      “I’m sure those who think it was a bad use of funds would much rather see it go to fight legislation for gay marriage.  Much better to use our money to “protect marriage” by legislating morality than by strengthening our own marriages and changing the divorce stats that are the same in the church right now as they are out.”

      I’m not a fan of Furtick and these types of things that he and his church does regularly, but I wouldn’t want to see these funds going towards something like that.  I’d rather it be used to care for the poor, widows, and orphans.  I’d rather that the $30 be used to buy Bibles so that people can give God’s Word to their unsaved neighbors over dinner.  Yes, I believe in helping husbands and wives being close together, but have to ask, “Is this action for the sake of the Gospel, or is it behavior modification in practice?”


    14. Rev. Kareem on Wed, October 15, 2008

      why is there so much hate towards what this pastor is doing?

      could it be envy? could it be jealousy?

      who knows what other outreach and inreach ministries he has at his church? many times we speculate without knowing what’s really going on…

      I see absolutely nothing wrong with what this pastor is doing… at my cousin’s church, the ministry is set up to care for the poor, widows, orphans, saved, unsaved, churched, unchurched, etc… his ministry also does what this pastor is doing…giving married couples a night out without having to weary about expenses…

      sure we could give BIbles to unsaved neighbors, family members, friends…but the only BIble most of them would ever read is our lifestyles…

      this type of inreach is good for the Gospel and for builing family relationships…. our first ministry isn’t in foreign land…but our first ministry is home…you could hit me over my head with a Bible all you want, but if you’re not concerned about my hardships…then your wittnessing to me is in vain… this pastor is concerned about hardships marraiges often faces…

      Jesus often fed those who were hungry, He often blessed those who were without…would you say Jesus actions were for the sake of the Gospel, or was His behavior modificaion in practice?

      I tip my hat to this brother…He stepped out of the Ecclesiastical box and saw ministry…

    15. Gretchen Fagan on Wed, October 15, 2008

      So this is where tithes and offerings go to? Gimme a break, if we now have to bribe our members to have quality time with their spouses then we have really failed.  I guess the Word of God is just not enough to change our hearts.  Lead by example and have a date night with your own money, not from the offering plate.  No wonder Christians in other nations can endure hardship far better than us Americans.  Next thing we know parents will get vouchers to spend time with their kids.

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