Have you ever found yourself in a situation and wonder how Jesus would respond? Well, I found myself there late yesterday afternoon after a lengthy discussion with a church about the pitfalls of the “one click” background checks for churches. Hear me out, I understand our economic climate over the past few years and how that impacts giving. I have served in leadership positions within the church, so I hear you. I am a huge fan of Dave Ramsay and graduated from Financial Peace University years go so I am a huge promoter of fiscal responsibility.
However, we also have to be careful shopping for the cheapest background checks. Yes, we might save a few dollars but at what expense?
If your current background screening partner is providing a $9 or $10 instant background check for churches and promotes this as national background check, they are not shooting straight with you. Their justification is your state provides good data to the national criminal database you are using. However that is irrelevant if the applicant has lived in other states, vacationed in other states, or traveled to other states on business. Doesn’t that apply to almost everybody?
Believe me when I say it would be easy to give in and sell these cheap searches. I could attract a lot more clients and increase profits, but I would not be able to sleep at night.
So I started thinking about how the Bible guides us and how Jesus would respond to this?
- Steal, Kill & Destroy. Jesus warns us about the enemy in John 10: 10-11: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life and have it to the full.” I think this passage warns us we have an extremely cunning and determined enemy. Anybody disagree? He wants nothing more than to see a child hurt or harmed because this will destroy the child and the ministry of the church.
- Death on the Cross. Jesus did not come and die a horrible death on the cross because he believed in taking the path of least resistance. No, Jesus was clear that the Kingdom of Heaven belongs to children (Matthew 19:14). So I think He would advise us to do everything we can to protect our children, that we have a moral and social responsibility (1 Timothy 5:8).
- Protecting Children. Jesus is clear throughout the Gospels that it would be “better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck and he were cast into the sea that he should cause one of these little ones to sin.” I think this is a directive to do all that we can to protect our children and prevent them from stumbling. We know from research that the impact of child physical and sexual abuse can have a life-long impact on a child and certainly impacts their faith.
The bottom line is the safety and security of children, members and the ministry must be given a higher priority. And the reality is this can be done without costing the church significantly more than the “one-click” background checks.
Are you ready to start doing background screening correctly? Contact us today.