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Do You Model What You Ask Others To Do?

The movie Gladiator opens with the Roman general Maximus leading his troops into battle against a horde of vicious barbarians. While most generals would simply sit on a distant hill observing, Maximus was leading the charge himself, all the while yelling at the top of his lungs, “Stay with me! Staaaay with meeee!” No wonder he never lost a battle—mainly because his men had incorporated the same loyalty and bravery their leader had modeled for years. The reason they respected Maximus so much? He never asked them to do anything he wasn’t willing to do himself. I’ve known a few […]

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Churches or Individuals: Which Should You Focus On?

In March of 2003 sportswriters for USA Today rated the most difficult thing to do in all of sports is to hit a fastball coming toward you at 100 mph. Any major leaguer knows it requires laser like focus to connect with the tiny blur hurling toward them. Similarly, a successful support raiser must exercise incredible concentration if they are going to get to their ministry assignment quickly—and fully funded. In Bill Dillon’s book, People Raising, he contrasts two different, but true, cases of support raising—one focused on churches, the other on individuals: Case One: Couple Focused on Churches Support […]

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Support Raising and Witnessing: Any Connection?

After helping train staff from almost 120 Christian organizations I have come to a conclusion: Ministries do personal support raising just like they do their personal witnessing. Consider the necessary steps in both activities: 1. Create the need 2. Share the solution 3. Ask for a decision Even though rejection is possible, the bottom line for both endeavors is: Are you able to ask the “golden question?” After presenting the gospel to someone, the golden question is the most agonizingly difficult question in the English language to utter. Even typing it out, my hands are sweating, my heart is pounding, […]

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Poor Talk: Is it Poisoning Your Ministry?

Question: What do college students standing in line at the dining hall have in common with a group of Christian ministry staff sitting around the coffee shop? Answer: They’re all complaining-one group about the food and the other about finances.Many Christian ministries are infested with people who are constantly whining about how much things cost, what they don’t have, or how tight their budget is. They’re drowning in an ocean of discontent and don’t even realize it! This pity party called “poor talk” surfaces in the form of joking (“Maybe we’ll finally get to go out to dinner at the marriage […]

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Müller, Taylor, or Moody: Whose Approach is Best?

 I can tell a lot about an organization by when they were founded. Many of the older ones will use George Müller or Hudson Taylor (both from England) or Americas’ D.L. Moody as their role model for fundraising. Müller, former lawyer turned prolific preacher, began numerous orphanages in London, trusted God alone for finances, claiming to have never asked anyone for a single penny. The final 40 years of his life was spent telling that same story every night to overflow crowds in cities all over the world. The money was pouring in! Taylor, young missionary who struck out on […]

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Standing Firm: Not Starting Until They Get to 100%

Backbone. I know we all have one–it’s just hard to find sometimes! Jesus was full of “grace and truth”, but most of us choose grace over truth more than we’d like to admit. Even though exercising tough love with our staff may inhibit some of the close emotional bonding we all yearn for, it’s usually the right path to take. All this to say: you will be doing your staff a huge favor if you do not let them report to their ministry assignment until they have at least 100% of their monthly budget raised (not just pledged). I know […]

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