Thursday, June 4, 2015

Give them hope

On a recent fundraising trip, I noticed a recurring theme among those I met with: hopelessness.

"I can't believe that the supreme court allows _________..."

"My kids aren't walking with the Lord anymore..."

"My siblings/parents/coworkers/friends refuse to accept Jesus..."

"It's been so hard to change ____________ at my church..."

"I feel like no one understands what we're going through..."

Each of those statements - and dozens more I heard - come from hearts wrought with hopelessness.  In the midst of such pain, it's really hard to see clearly.  It's hard to reach beyond the hopelessness.  It's hard to remember that above the dark storm we're experiencing is a beautiful, sun-drenched cloudscape.

This is where you, the fundraiser, come in.

We often think of ourselves as beggars, but in truth, we are givers.  Wherever we go, we freely give the fantastic news that even though the world is ruled by the prince of the power of the air and that rebellious sinners have a great deal of authority, God is not worried.  He has absolute power over Satan and all demons.  He sets up kings and removes kings.  He is unfazed at the defiance of the most rebellious of sinners.  Indeed, He is at work in the world winning those very sinners to Himself.

Consider how David expresses his hope in Psalm 3:
O Lord, how many are my foes!
Many are rising against me;
many are saying of my soul,
"there is no salvation for him in God!"        Selah
But you, O Lord, are a shield about me,
my glory, and the lifter of my head.
I cried aloud to the Lord,
and he answered me from his holy hill.       Selah
I lay down and slept;
I woke again, for the Lord sustained me.
I will not be afraid of many thousands of people
who have set themselves against me all around.
                                         Psalm 3:1-6, ESV
Friends, like David, we are hope-bearers.  We proclaim that no matter how many foes rise up against us, there IS salvation for us in God!  He is our shield when we're under attack.  He is our glory when our country's glory is fading.  He lifts our heads when they are weighed down by discouragement and despair.  He sustains us when sleep robs us of our self-awareness and self-protectiveness.  Though thousands are against us, those who are with us are more than those who are with them. (2 Kings 6:16)

As I heard each fear and understood each hopeless phrase while on my recent trip, I purposefully sought to lift my friends' eyes above the clouds.  I told them about lives transformed by Jesus.  I took them to Scripture that shared of God being with us in the midst of despair.  I shared about how dark Good Friday was... but how beautiful Easter Sunday became.

Fellow fundraiser, you are spending these difficult days raising money in order to give the world hope.  Don't be fooled into thinking that that mission doesn't begin until you're at 100% of your support goal; it starts right now!  It is your great privilege to lift your donors' eyes above the clouds.

Give them hope!