Five Fundraising Lessons From Around The World

#2. Glass Ceiling Kicks in at 60%!

After being trained in ministry partner development, many staff from around the world go gangbusters in setting face-to-face appointments. And many see their donor income double within 12 months. The Goliath of Fund-raising has been slain!


Many stop at around 60% of budget even though God has blessed their fund-raising. Why do they stop? Perhaps because--

  1. Their budget is too high. They can get by on 60% of a too-high budget.

  2. The "wolf is away from the door" as we say in America. At 60% they can pay most of their bills. The pressure is off.

  3. They are tired of fund-raising or secretly disdain fund-raising.

  4. They have a "bypass system" where additional money comes from an inheritance, spouse working or a business on the side.

But here is a different perspective. Assuming the budget is legitimate, stopping your fund-raising just because the wolf is away from the door creates subtle personal or marriage pressure. Secondly, you are hindering the advance of the Gospel.

I observe among missionaries of several cultures that 60% funding means:

A. No saving or investing. Wives feel this pressure first. "We ought to be saving," they say.

B. No margin in finances. Even small, unexpected expenses create pressure.

C. Cannot seize ministry expansion opportunities because cash is not available. Even providing snacks for your bible study becomes a burden.

But here is a different perspective. Many gospel-workers at 60% think that is all the higher they can go. They have constructed a 60% glass ceiling and resign themselves to bobbing to the top and coasting back down. Breaking through to 110% is not in their thinking. What does this say about their view of God?

I am not suggesting you ought to be rich, but that you take seriously Jesus' words in Matthew 10:10: "The worker is worthy of his [or her] support." God wants his work funded and He wants his workers funded. You are worthy of full support—not because of your holiness, but because of your calling.

Today, I ask you to give yourself permission to reach 110% of your budget—not 60%! I ask you to give yourself permission to live without financial pressure and to seize ministry expansion opportunities! Don’t settle for 60%.

What is it you don’t know about God that causes you to hold back?