By on June 2, 2015   /   9 Comments


Full-time support raising can feel like a juggling act. There are so many relational plates to keep spinning, new prospect balls we don’t want to drop, and the ongoing balancing act of constantly initiating and responding.

In the midst of all this, we can easily get so caught up in our fundraising activities that we lose track of God’s activity in our lives. Although it’s true that financial needs normally drive our support raising efforts, I am convinced that God has called us to the ministry of building a support team for reasons that dwarf the financial realities.

Fundraising definitely takes us out of our comfort zone. Whether it is the fear of risking our friendships, or the pressure of having to maintain so many relationships, or the discomfort of talking about money, or feeling overly dependent upon others—whatever the experience, we find ourselves feeling fearful and out of control.

In his book The Deeper Journey, Robert Mulholland Jr. writes, “The false self is a fearful self…One of the ways our false self tries to compensate is to find our identity in performance….Our false self throws itself, often frantically, into a frenetic round of performances designed to provide a matrix of identity for our being…The problem is that in its fear our false self sinks the roots of our identity into these activities—activities that were never intended to bear the weight of our identity as children of God.”

This is why I believe that seasons of support raising offer us a powerful opportunity for spiritual formation. Amidst the swirl of fundraising activity and emotional discomfort, the Spirit invites us to return to the source of our true identity and sink our roots deeply into His love for us. It is an invitation to transformation, and it requires us to engage in the spiritual and practical work of support raising to experience all that God wants to show us.

Ironically, those very disciplines we often feel we don’t have time or emotional energy for may be the most critical pieces of our fundraising journey. In the Spiritual Disciplines Handbook, Adele Calhoun writes: “Spiritual disciplines give the Holy Spirit space to brood over our souls. They put us in a place where we can begin to notice God and respond to His word to us.”

So how can we start to give the Spirit space to “brood over our souls”? It may take some experimentation and discernment to identify how God is calling you to cooperate with the Spirit. You might start by reflecting on the following five categories, asking the Lord which area He might be inviting you to go deeper in. Then get started by trying out some of the activities in that category:

  1. Prayer—centering prayer, listening prayer, intercession, confession, thanksgiving, fasting, fixed-hour prayer, and prayer walking
  2. Silence, solitude, sabbath—making space for the Spirit to speak, stepping away from activity, retreat, slowing, simplicity and unplugging
  3. Reflection—journaling, the daily examen (When today have I felt closest to God? When have I felt farthest from God?), contemplation, and spiritual direction
  4. Scripture—praying the Psalms, lectio divina (read, meditate, pray, contemplate), scripture memorization, devotional reading, and scripture meditation
  5. Community—spiritual accountability, intentional community, spiritual friendships, corporate worship, and celebration

Where is God inviting you into spiritual transformation in this season of support raising? How might fundraising provide an opportunity for the Spirit to renew your soul? Yes, the Lord wants to get you fully funded and to your ministry assignment, but don’t miss out on the even bigger things He has in mind for you along the way!


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