I have been thinking a lot recently about why the initial season of fundraising is difficult for mostly all new staff… and apart from the obvious its different reasons for everyone I have been noticing some common threads amongst me and some of my other new staff friends. In general I would say fundraising is challenging because it causes us to confront some of the lies that we were previously believing. Here are some of them (though I am sure there are many more… I didn’t even touch the ones related to money):
Lie #1: I am nothing if I am not ministering
I think this lie rears its ugly head when we have found too much of our identities in what were doing on campus. It calls into question our primary identity as a son or daughter of Christ and makes us feel worthless and useless.
Lie #2: I’m not worth supporting
I feel this at especially low moments, or when I have sinned in some way or another. It feels like, “why would God bless me with support when I am such a mess in other ways?” But the truth is every human being deserves the support they need and our God is generous and gracious beyond our wildest imaginings.
Lie #3: Its all about me
Related to lie #2 (because that was also a self-focused lie), this lie tells us that this season is all about us. Its our ministry, our needs that need to be met, our effort that needs to bring in things to meet them. It feels like I keep making appointments to talk about ME and MY ministry, etc, etc. And I think as soon as we step on the ME-train things start going hay-wire. I see myself as the one who needs to get everything done, myself as the one with all of the responsibility, and I consequently get selfish and think about myself all the time. Eww, not pretty. This week I have been re-aligning that this season is NOT about ME. Its Jesus’s ministry that He invites me to be a part of… ultimately He must provide the funds. Its not even really about me when I am meeting with potential donors–its about them and how they might grow/benefit from supporting Jesus’s work on the college campus. Its about them and how they would like to be involved. Maybe it is partly about me (after all its raising a support team for me, haha), but not in a selfish, self-focused way.
To all my fund-raising friends, hang in there. Any lies you want to add to this list?
Watch this video for some encouragement:
To all my non-fund-raising friends, please pray for me and all of the new staff this year who are battling these lies.