Personal Fundraising for Mission Trips
at Second Baptist Church, Springfield, Missouri
Dr. John E. Marshall, Pastor-Teacher
Since missions is a driving force in our lives as believers, we often find ourselves facing a dilemma. If we want to go on a mission trip, but do not have enough money to do so, what should we do? Our first step should be to seek donations from relatives and friends who know us well and believe in our cause.
Since Second Baptist has over two hundred people a year going on mission trips, asking for funds from our church people probably will not be very productive. The large number of Second Baptist members going on mission trips also forbids mass mailouts to church members and any appeals to Sunday School classes or other organizations in our church.
If donations from relatives and friends do not meet the needed amount for a desired mission trip, we recommend you do not go. It is unwise to go into debt to finance a mission trip. To help ease the disappointment of not being able to go on a given trip, our church offers each year in different price ranges many mission trips, reaching from across town to across the ocean. Our desire is to provide mission trips in the financial capability of every Second Baptist member so they can find a fulfilling place of service in missions.
Another way we try to help our people fulfill the Great Commission is by planning mission trips annually for years to come. Instead of going on a mission trip this year and crippling yourself financially, start right now setting aside money for the future and plan to go on a mission trip next year.
We have a basic belief at Second that if God truly is calling one to go on a particular mission trip, He will provide the funds. Whom God inspires, He enables to go. If funds for a trip are not readily available, we must face the fact it may have been our own strong desire rather than God’s direct call which made us want to participate in this trip. God’s specific call for our lives is often different from our own personal desire at any given moment. Every believer should have a heart for every mission trip ever offered, but one way to determine God’s exact will for us to go on a particular trip is if it becomes financially attainable.
Neil Anderson, in his book, “Overcoming the Darkness,” wisely points out the difference between a godly goal and a godly desire. A godly goal is something you can accomplish on your own with God’s help. It is always attainable. A godly desire is something someone else can thwart. Going on a mission trip often begins as a godly desire. It can be attained only if others help provide funds. The trip should thus be seen as a godly goal only if the funds become available.