THREE KEYS TO “WORK THE CROWD”

Some Christian workers start out soliciting churches or large groups, believing that will be the key to full funding. Most of them eventually realize their support will primarily come from individuals. Without a doubt, the tried-and-true approach to ministry partner development should always be face-to-face appointments with people. It is effective, personal, and creates a more stable support base. So, is there a role that churches or groups can play in getting us fully funded? Yes! As a kid in Sunday School I learned a little ditty that used my hands with fingers interlocked and my index fingers pointed upward. […]

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FACE-TO-FACE FELLOWSHIP WITH MINISTRY PARTNERS

“One of the things I always pray for is the opportunity, God willing, to come at last to see you. For I long to visit you so I can bring you some spiritual gift that will help you grow strong in the Lord. When we get together, I want to encourage you in your faith, but I also want to be encouraged by yours.” (Romans 1:10-12, NLT). Recently, I was reminded of this amazing gift God gives us through visits with ministry partners. I drove from Colorado Springs to San Diego to see many people, including those at my home […]

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HOW YOU SAY IT IS JUST AS IMPORTANT AS WHAT YOU SAY

Men, do you remember what it was like to ask that young woman out on your first date? How did it feel—terrifying, heart-thudding, and pulse-pounding? If you could go back in time to watch a video of what you said and how it sounded, would you want a “redo”? To ask someone out on a date may not be the same as asking someone to support your ministry, but there is a principle to learn. How you say is just as important as what you say. “Jim” (not his real name), a ministry leader, asked some friends if he could […]

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FIVE WORLDWIDE SUPPORT-RAISING PRINCIPLES THAT TRANSCEND CULTURE

I can’t tell you how many times Christian workers have rolled their eyes and blurted out to me, “Steve, you just don’t understand why we can’t raise support in our culture!” If I had a dollar for every time, I could easily buy that Cabela’s trout fishing rod and reel I had been eyeing for Christmas! For more than 15 years now, I’ve had the privilege of training thousands of Christian workers from all over the world, as well as every ethnicity within the U.S. I’ve observed there is a single common denominator with virtually everyone we interact with: In […]

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FIVE REASONS WHY DEADLINES ARE YOUR FRIENDS

On Jan. 25, 2006, a giant pile of dirt was stacked up next to Razorback Road by the University of Arkansas. The local paper reported they were about to start building the largest outdoor track facility anywhere in the country. The athletic director at the time, the legendary Frank Broyles, promised it would be complete for the conference outdoor track championships that had already been scheduled for May 11—by faith! Broyles was boldly quoted: “It will be ready—period. There is no doubt about that.” Reading that, I laughed out loud and spouted, “You gotta’ be kidding. Absolutely NO WAY!” Broyles […]

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SIX HAZARDOUS PHRASES TO AVOID DURING THE ASK

In the nervousness of a fundraising appointment, do un-helpful words pop out of your mouth? At the risk of being legalistic, may I be painfully specific? The guideline: “Be sensitive yet bold in your financial presentation!” sounds great. But what does that mean? Here are six phrases to avoid. Fasten your seatbelt! 1. “Will you give to me?” “Give to me” is a first cousin of begging. Help donors understand they give to the Kingdom—vertically—not to bail you out horizontally. Ask your friends to support the Kingdom of God—specifically the Kingdom work God has assigned you. Find your own words, […]

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TAKE YOURSELF OUT OF THE PICTURE

“If only I could take me out of support raising and have someone else do it for me!” Maybe you’ve thought that before, but that’s not what I mean by taking yourself out of the support raising picture. For many support-based missionaries, the subject of “me” and support raising are inextricably linked together. Although most fellow missionaries I have known and met throughout the years are very humble and self-effacing in this area, they have a tendency to fall headlong into the trap of the enemy: feeling and acting, as though support raising is both all about themselves and totally […]

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WHY HEALTH TRUMPS EVERYTHING

Why Health Trumps Everything from Support Raising Solutions on Vimeo. Our leadership team worked through a great book by Patrick Lencioni recently. The premise is that a healthy team will always accomplish more than a gifted team. If the leaders know how to live a balanced life and then humbly align around a commonly agreed on mission, there is nothing they cannot accomplish! I believe the three bases support raisers must run to have a well-rounded mission are: 1) getting spiritually healthy, 2) becoming vision driven, and 3) reaching full support. And in that order! Most workers we train in […]

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HONORING PARENTS AND FAMILY WHILE RAISING SUPPORT

“You’re an embarrassment to the family – you shouldn’t be begging, looking for a handout!” I was stunned by my aunt’s exclamation as we ate lunch at a restaurant near her retirement community. Clearly, she didn’t understand my lifestyle of missionary support raising, nor did she agree. She made it plain that she would not participate in my financial support. I was taken aback by her negative response to my recent decision to do missions work and depend upon church, friends, and family for financial support. I went to the Lord after this painful interaction and sensed that He understood […]

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LESSONS I LEARNED FROM MY JEWISH FATHER AND MOTHER

At 7:30 a.m. on May 14, I got one of those dreaded calls. It was my brother, Steve, “Mom was taken to the hospital at 2:30 this morning and is very ill.” My 90-year-old mother, Ida, passed away at 11 that evening. I was in Orlando training 44 new staff members. I quickly packed my car and drove through the night. Steve and I got on our phones to take care of the things you have to do when someone passes away. When you experience loss, you reflect on life. Mom’s parents, Morris and Bessie, immigrated to the U.S. in […]

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