Tedd and I attended a Bodybuilders Bootcamp in Fayetteville this month.
What in the world is that, you ask? Well in my own words :) it's a conference for missionaries, teaching biblical and practical principles for fundraising in order to support one's ministry.
We were at first very reluctant to go. It seemed unspiritual to spend so much time talking about how to raise money. I think we felt proud, too, because we'd never formally "raised support," and we felt above that somehow...not a very godly attitude. However, we prayed for open minds and humble hearts, and we did enjoy our time there with other believers and walked away with a couple of things:
1. We realized that we've never really asked people face-to-face to support us, and that asking in person is a more old-fashioned, "noble" way of doing things.
2. We've never tried to pursue 100% of our monthly budget by asking more people to join our support team. We set our budget with the guidance of our organization and within a reasonable standard of living, but we're at about 80% and we just settled there, "getting by."
3. Most importantly, we realized that we are guilty of being "budget-driven" rather than "vision-driven." There's always a necessity for balance, of course, but we've leaned more on the side of setting our goals based on $$ rather than setting our goals based on our God-given vision. We have decided to prayerfully set goals and focus on vision and then raise our finances accordingly, not the other way around.
So these are some things we took away from the conference. It was also very beneficial to me (Em) to really think about what I want to do more than anything else in the world for God...that kind of passion would not be held back by money or practicalities.
And here's a picture of the group that attended. Can you find us???