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The Truth about Fund Raising
Tonight I got my bill from the hospital. I stood there staring at it and my hand started to shake, my stupid hand that got me into this mess in the first place. I threw the bill on the ground and sat down to write a fundraising blog like I had been meaning to do for the last five months. Then the familiar feeling came over me. My chest started to constrict and I had trouble breathing. I closed my laptop and went upstairs where I vented to God for nearly an hour. I questioned why I was here and why I had to ask for help and all of the other questions I had asked a million times.
I have been fundraising for nearly two and a half years now and I don’t like it any more today than when I first started. But I have chosen the life of a missionary, and it is a life that I love. I want to be in missions for a long time, but it doesn’t come without its difficulties.
It all started about a month ago when my hands swelled up overnight to twice their normal size for no apparent reason. I was taken to the emergency room the next morning rather reluctantly and prescribed antibiotics by the nurses there. To this day I do not know what caused it. My hands went back to normal, but the hospital bill remains.
My inability to pay the bill was not what evoked the tornado of emotions that followed. It was the fact that I needed to ask for help. There is an innate resistance that rises up within me every time I think about needing help. It is an odd mixture of pride and lack of self-worth that holds me back. I don’t want to ask anyone for help, because in the end, I don’t think I am worth their time. I don’t want to take people’s hard earned money to pay for my hospital bills, my student loans, and my disintegrating car. How is that honoring God? How is that worth it?
And then in the middle of my tears of frustration I heard a voice that always stills me:
You are worth it to me. You must believe in the work I am doing. I have called you here. I want you here. I have plans to prosper you, not to harm you, not to bring you pain. You must believe that I have you here for a reason. You must believe that you are needed here. You must believe that what you are doing is important, even if you can’t see it today. You must believe that other people want to help you and that their money is helping you be where you need to be, in these kid’s lives, in your co-workers lives, in the lives of your ministry contacts. You must believe that you are loved. And that love makes you worth it. It is not an easy life, no one ever said that it would be, but in the end it is a life that will justify the sacrifice.
This is the life that I have chosen. I know God has me here for a reason and I know it is good. Fund raising will always be hard for me, but it is an opportunity to trust God, to put away my fears and to embrace the absolute freedom he wants to give me. Freedom from feeling unimportant and unworthy. Freedom from pride and isolation. Free to serve God and love people. Freedom that makes me feel alive and I know every moment will be worth it.