Whether you follow the news through television, internet or newspaper, you can’t avoid being overwhelmed with the headlines of one financial crisis after another. Maybe you, like me, have found yourself being tested in the source of your security. As in every time of struggle or crisis, we need to look at what God says and live out of His truth rather than what the headlines are telling us.
Just doing a word study on “provide” has already reminded me how faithful He is in providing for ALL of my needs. And Paul in Philippians 4 helps me again realize that God’s ability to sustain us remains the same no matter what our circumstances.
Below are some practical things we can be doing during this season of global crisis to help keep our focus on Him and our support going strong.
1) Review your calling and what God has said. Our calling isn’t dependent upon the ups and downs of our financial situation. It will test our calling, though, which is not a bad thing.
2) Don’t panic and start sending out crisis letters. This only communicates a lack of faith and doesn’t motivate people to partner with you. Seek God and His perspective.
3) Broaden your base of support. It’s healthier to have many people giving smaller amounts than a few who give a large amount. Be as personal as possible in asking people to partner with you in ministry.
4) Keep the ministry vision central. Remember, you’re inviting supporters to advance the Kingdom, not merely meet your personal needs. Be vision-driven in all your communications.
5) Keep up your personal communication with supporters. Empathize with them, ask how you can be praying for them and send a card telling them how God led you to pray.
6) Focus on the essentials. Get rid of debt; build up your savings; repair things rather than replace; work together, and just like your struggling supporters, prayerfully distinguish between your wants and your needs/obligations.
7) Let this be a wake up call. Get your finances in order; ask for help if needed. Learn from the ant in Proverbs 6:8.
Adapted by Terry Sherman and used with permission from Steve Shadrach, December 2008 issue of Support Raising Solutions (more articles here). A number of us in YWAM would like to see more training developed in how to raise support for YWAMers internationally. If you’d like to network about this, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.