1. Not every Christian believes being a missionary is a career worthy of receiving financial support.
The truth is that we joyfully give money to whatever we believe has worth. I just heard of a video gamer who makes close to one million dollars per month! That is $1,000,000 per month!!! People willingly give this kid (he’s in his 20’s) money so that they can watch him play video games on the internet. Let that sink in for a bit.
2. Many missionaries haven’t been taught about this aspect of ministry.
I don’t think I was ever taught how to “raise support” for ministry, but was just told to “raise support.” So I went about writing letters to everyone I knew, and to many I didn’t, begging for money. As a result, I felt like a beggar, which is not a wonderful feeling. We need a better understanding (and training) of this part of our ministry.
3. What we need are partners, not donors.
When you donate your blood, you just give blood and leave. You never know if your blood helped someone or if perhaps just went to waste. However, when a loved one needs a blood transfusion, you become partners with that person. You have a connection and an investment in the life and wellbeing of your loved one. Unfortunately many missionaries seek out donors and not partners.
4. Having financial partners is rewarding.
Most missionaries hate raising support and view it as a necessary evil. However, when we change our mindset and begin to believe that those who give are truly our partners, and we treat them as partners, it makes all the difference in the world. For the past four years we have had a congregation in Tennessee partner with us and it has been wonderful! Our partnership with them has made our time in China amazing! And 20 years from now when we look back on these days, we will not remember the money they gave us, but we will remember our partnership and the love we have for one another.
5. Jesus and the 12 apostles had financial partners.
A group of women believed the ministry of Jesus and the 12 had value and so they partnered with their ministry by giving of their finances (Luke 8:3).
6. There were times in the ministry of Paul where he worked a job and times when he relied upon partners.
Some who oppose partnering with missionaries say that Paul never received support, but always worked as a tent maker. This is just not true. There were times he worked a job and times when he gave himself full-time to his ministry. And on a personal note, our family has done the same as Paul.