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Is Fundraising a Necessary Evil? A Letter from a Missionary.

Is Fundraising a Necessary Evil? A Letter from a Missionary.

In our e-book, How to Get a Generous Response (almost) Every Time You Ask, we discuss how raising money is all about understanding how to invite other people to solve a problem with you by taking ownership of the cause (because getting a generous response is all about helping donors understand how their giving is making a difference).

It’s important to come to the reality that asking for a generous response from others for your ministry or cause is not a selfish endeavor. Asking for a generous response is about inviting someone else to experience the blessings of investing in God’s Kingdom with you.

We received a letter this week from two of our clients who are fundraising and preparing for their move to France. As I read over the words, my eyes welled with tears, and I was reminded of why we do what we do.

This is one of the most impactful letters I’ve ever received and the very heartbeat of our organization. Enjoy—and be encouraged in your fundraising endeavors today.

Two years ago, my wife, Beth, and I discovered that God was calling us to be missionaries to France. As we have been walking down this road of preparing ourselves to serve overseas, God has revealed Himself in numerous ways and shown me a much bigger picture of His plan than I had previously understood.

At first, I knew God had called us to go and to serve (and I still believe that) but recently, He has been opening my eyes, more and more, to the importance of our ministry in the moments before we go. He is stretching Beth and me, dissolving our comfort zone, and breaking down our walls and objections by asking us to be open to His plan and His pace.

As introverts who have been serving others for the majority of our lives, this season of fundraising and asking others to serve alongside us has shifted our perspective and shaken our complacency.

It is so easy to fall into a routine and give in ways that are familiar, but sacrificing our control of how we build the Kingdom is even more challenging than increasing the amount we give to God through familiar methods. However, I have learned that my weakness is truly where God shines brightest.

While I want to serve and sacrifice through my own efforts, I am now being asked to invite others to serve and sacrifice for the calling God has given us to reach France.And in that calling, God has charged me with challenging and encouraging others to be a part of His work. After all, everything we have, including our time, our talents, and our treasures come from Him; and we each have the privilege of thanking Him for His gifts by investing them for His glory.

I have had people tell me, “It's too bad you need to take all of this time to fundraise when your team already needs you in Paris,"but I know that our partners in the US need me now too. They might not yet know that they are going to be our partners, and we don't know who will be our partners, but God has called several people to be part of our sending team to advance His Kingdom in France.Ignoring this part of the journey would be detrimental to Beth and me, as well as to our partners.

In this season, we have an obligation to the people in our network. They need to be challenged more than we need to be funded.We want to give all of them—more than 600 people—the opportunity to give, to serve God, and to share in the joy of generosity.We need to get through our list for our sake and for theirs.

This process has grown our heart for fundraising, and we have learned how to enjoy it and how to have fun, even though it can be emotionally and physically exhausting. It's like a treasure hunt, discovering who God has called to go on this adventure with us, and we are constantly surprised by who He is leading to partner with us.Viewing it in these ways has helped us take the rejections well because we know that roughly 500 people we are called to reach out to aren't supposed to be on our team.

God is using this time and this need to grow all of us, and it's important that we each respond to God's leading in whatever way He is calling each of us.This is not my story, it is God's story, and this is not my calling, it is our calling.

Even if I could begin my ministry in France without this process, I wouldn't, because I wouldn't want to deprive our team of the opportunity to respond to God's invitation and the blessings that come from obeying and being in the middle of God's will.He is doing a great work to restore humanity to Himself, and we are His vessels to reach His lost children and show them His love.

Whether you go, give, or pray, know that you are an integral part of weaving God's tapestry of salvation.

- Written by Tailored Clients, Jay and Beth Vetter

Tailored Fundraising Solutions was founded to assist individuals in pursuing and funding their God-given callings and desires. This couple beautifully articulated why it is so important to involve others in the work we feel called to do. If you would like to work with a member of our Tailored Fundraising team, clickhere to connect with us today.

At a loss for what to write in your newsletter?

At a loss for what to write in your newsletter?

As you sit at your desk, staring at a blank screen (with only a blinking cursor to remind you that it’s still running), and wondering what to write in your monthly newsletter—let us inspire you with two simple questions.

We have been coaching a client for 11 months now, and he recently told us that he was at a complete loss for what to include in his monthly newsletter. This particular missionary has been serving in Haiti, and was unsure of what to communicate to his ministry partners, family, and friends.

He was tired of sending the normal, mundane family updates and always ending the letter by bringing up the remaining funds they still needed to raise. 

So, we asked two very simple (but very important) questions to spark a little creativity:

1. What's an example of a need that your ministry is addressing? 

2. How does your ministry meet this need?

He immediately knew that Haiti’s greatest needs are all linked to poverty. The average worker's salary in Haiti is $2.00 per day, and many Haitian workers have no skill set to even find a job.

After pondering the questions above, he wrote a gripping story about a Haitian family with 3 kids whose father had to leave Haiti in search of a job. The wife was left behind and could only provide a single meal of fish for her family each day.

Our client used his newsletter to explain how this ministry would help to provide employment for those without jobs. He had a plan to create jobs and stable income for families through training men and women with marketable skills to help them build a hospital to care for the poor. They would need concrete layers and carpenters to build the facility, and nurses to run the hospital after it was built.

By answering these two simple questions, he realized that he had a wealth of compelling stories to share in order to cast vision for the ministry. He also realized that their partners wanted to learn more about the needs of the people in Haiti and the practical, daily help their ministry was providing.

You may not even be on your ministry assignment, but you can always offer a vision-focused newsletter to educate and enlarge your partner's world as you connect them to what you are accomplishing together.

And that is what fundraising is all about.

If you would like help writing a newsletter or strategizing your organization’s mission, click here to speak with a Tailored Fundraising Coach today.

Can Texting Result in More Funding?

Can Texting Result in More Funding?

Ever thought about using text messages as your ongoing communication to donors, instead of or in addition to email?

Text messages have an open rate of 98% within 2 minutes of sending and almost 100% open rate in 24 hours of sending. That’s pretty incredible compared to the average open rate of email being 20%!

So, you might ask, “What would a text to my donors actually look like?”

We’re glad you asked. To prepare the perfect text message to your donor, you’ll want to follow these 3 simple steps.

1. Keep it Short and Sweet. Well, obviously, your text message should be short and sweet. It shouldn’t be more than one or two sentences, usually. You don’t want to take up their entire screen (or their entire day) having to read through your message.

2. Use Visuals. Feel free to send pictures, graphics, or links to impact stories from your organization or ministry. Anything to inspire and connect your donor to the cause is a great way to keep them engaged!

3. Give Opportunities to Get Involved. You should even occasionally ask people to donate for a specific and urgent opportunity or need. A text message is also a perfect way to send out a timely prayer request. A personal text message feels much more intimate and casual than an email and will likely result in a higher response rate—for both donations and prayer support.

If you are on-board with adding texting to your communication styles, you might try using www.slicktext.com. They are an SMS marketing service that helps you organize your organization’s communication through text. It is simple and easy to use, and they have a free plan that will let you test it out before buying. Try it today and see how it works for you!

To connect with a Tailored Fundraising Solutions team member today, clickhere.