Monday, March 14, 2011

Thoughts on fundraising...

For most missionaries, fund raising can be pretty intimidating. Even if you're raising money for something you care a lot about, it can be a vulnerable experience to lay your heart on the table and ask someone to partner with you financially. You face fears of rejection and when someone says no, it can be easy to take it personally or fear going out again to ask someone else. No matter how much you trust God to provide, the experience can be difficult and sometimes scary.

At our last training at WorldVenture, they talked about the danger of looking at raising financial support as "subtractional", seeing someone else's giving as the act of subtracting from what they have to fund our ministry. Instead, partnering with us in ministry should not be subtractional, but transformational, allowing both us and our support team to be transformed as we partner in sharing the gospel in Austria.

We are about a month in to the process of building our support team and so far, it has been a great blessing. I know we will have ups and down, but 4 weeks in, I am enjoying it. My favorite parts of raising support have been...
  • Meeting with friends gives us a chance to educate people we know and love about the need in Austria - something that many people are not aware of and that we are passionate about!
  • We have an excuse to get together with and catch up with everyone we know!
  • We are building a team of prayer warriors. Seeing friends reminds me that we will be well supported in prayer
  • I have been challenged and blessed by the experience of supporting missionaries over the years. I truly believe that it is something God calls us to. It is exciting to see friends make the decision to support a missionary for the first time after meeting with us!
  • Sharing our story has allowed us to clear up many unanswered questions related to our plans and our timeline. It is helpful to have people we know be up-to-date on our goals and when we hope to depart for Austria, as well as our long term commitment.
  • The more we share our hearts for Austria, the more my heart grows for the this country in need. The statistics and stories become more real to me every time I share them with someone else.
  • We have been blessed by the support already pouring in and I am completely humbled by the response we've received already. God is using this to remind of us of the wonderful community he has surrounded us with, a community that loves the Lord and is eager to enable us to serve Him.
I am thankful for the experience we've already had and look forward to the coming months of sharing our story!