The 5 Worst Questions You May Be Asked During a Support Appointment
When starting a Q and A time with a group I always seem to say,
“There are no bad questions, only bad answers.”
But as it relates to our support raising appointments, I’m not so sure.
I certainly want to give every person I meet with the chance to ask whatever they want to, but occasionally those questions can be quite gut-wrenching!
Here’s a sampling of some of the real “doozies” you might be presented with on the support trail with a suggested script that might aid you as you prayerfully think of a good response.
Here we go. Buckle up!
1. Why are you forcing your beliefs onto others? Aren’t they all seeking truth and equal in value?
“Well Lindsey, I certainly don’t want to force anything on anyone. I’m really just trying to be obedient to the Lord.
Jesus made a couple of strong statements: ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father but through Me’ and then ‘Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.’
Jesus is my Lord and Savior and I want to be faithful to Him and share with others what He tells us to.
I don’t intend to offend anyone, but I have to do and be what He tells us to.
Plus, I would love for everyone to experience the love and grace and forgiveness I’ve received from Jesus. Does that make sense?”
2. Why don’t you get a real job and quit leeching off of others?
“Funny, I’ve been asked that before, Kyle!
I did get an engineering degree and had a few great offers with significant salaries, but I felt led by God to pursue a different calling for now.
There may be a day I go into engineering, but I feel very burdened about using all of my time and energies to help college students come to know and follow Christ.
I know raising support may appear like begging to some, but the majority of the Christian workers around the world are “faith missionaries” who receive no guaranteed salary, but friends, family, and others invest in them to free them up to do ministry full time.
It really can be quite a powerful partnership between the worker and the donors to impact the world for Christ.”
3. Where in the Bible does it talk about raising funds from others to do your ministry?
“Good question, Kate.
In the Old Testament God chose the whole Levitical tribe to be full time priests and live and minister off the ongoing gifts of the Israelites.
The Jewish servant Nehemiah approached the King of Persia face to face to ask him for resources to go back to Jerusalem to rebuild the city physically and spiritually.
In the New Testament the Apostle Paul made tents in a few cities to support himself, but in far more cities was fully funded by churches and individuals.
The best example would be Jesus Himself.
In Luke 8 it describes how He and His disciples lived and ministered full time from the continuing donations of individuals listed in the passage.
When I read that, I thought, ‘Wow, if it was good enough for Jesus to live and minister by other’s gifts, why wouldn’t it be ok for me as well?”
4. My pastor says I’m supposed to give only to my church. Are you asking me to take money from my church to give to you?
“I commend you for giving to your church, Rick. That’s the very first check I write every month, but it’s not because the Bible tells me to.
The Old Testament does provide the Jews percentages they were supposed to give from their income (a lot more than 10%), but Jesus changed all that.
Neither He nor any New Testament writer lists any percentages or rules for giving.
Instead, they just provided principles, like: give generously, regularly, secretly, and cheerfully.
Seems like God wants us to give from the ‘want to’ not the ‘ought to.’
Personally, I use Acts 1:8 as my template. I want to strategically divide my giving between my Jerusalem (my town and church), my Judea and Samaria (region and country), and the uttermost parts (foreign missions).
But Rick, you go before the Lord and ask Him where He wants you to give, and how much He wants you to give. OK?”
5. You’ll be making a lot more money than me. Don’t you need to lower your standard of living or go approach wealthier people than me?
“I see your point, Natalie.
The amount I’m required to raise is set by the Board of Directors of our organization. They want to make sure our personal and ministry expenses are completely covered to free us up to fully focus on reaching these young teenage girls—and not have to stress over money.
That overall total I showed you includes taxes, health insurance, ministry expenses, and administrative fees, so my actual salary is only a percentage of that.
Ultimately, though, I subscribe to the reason the Apostle Paul asked others for support.
In Philippians 4 he told the believers he wasn’t as interested in getting their gifts as he was them building up treasure in their heavenly bank accounts as a result of his asking…and their giving.
Regardless of what your income is, or mine, Natalie, I would not feel like much of a friend if I did not give you a chance to invest in the Great Commission.
I’m hoping both of us will be very wealthy women in heaven!”
Regardless of how intense or bizarre the questions are that come your way, how we say something usually communicates so much more than what we say.
In the final analysis, your attitude and nonverbal communication can make or break a support appointment.
So be comfortable with any person saying or asking just about anything.
Don’t get frustrated or ruffled.
Patiently listen with an open mind and heart, even if they want to vent about something.
Try to empathize and look at things from their perspective.
The more at ease I am with them, the more at ease they seem to be with me.
So, bathe each appointment in prayer. Ask the Lord to go before you.
He will superintend everything and put just the right people on your team at just the right times and with just the right amounts.
Watch Him work on your behalf!