01 Oct Determined Generosity
“But generous people plan to do what is generous, and they stand firm in their generosity.” Isaiah 32:8 NLT
Generous giving is spiritual warfare. When believers give generously, they join you in pushing back the darkness. Satan will do everything he can to discourage your donors by tempting them with greed, fear, and doubt. He will try to convince them they can’t afford to give, or their gifts won’t make an eternal difference. Thankfully, generous people stand firm in their generosity, but their giving decisions are not simple or easy. Consider these four challenges:
Family obligations are often used as an excuse for not giving. You may have heard someone say, “I’m helping my child or grandchild through college, so I can’t give.” The friend at midnight’s friend also used his children as an excuse. “My children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything,” (Luke 11:7). It is proper to care for your family (1 Tim. 5:8) but unfortunately some senior saints are living for pleasure (1 Tim. 5:7). Giving becomes more challenging when children question their parents’ or grandparents’ charitable legacy decisions. However, generous people are determined to make generosity a priority because they have an eternal perspective.
Making wise giving decisions is difficult work. With so many worthy charitable options, donors must ask the Lord for wisdom to “discern what is best” (Phil. 1:10). Your donors may want to give but simply cannot because of other responsibilities. Fred was asked for a campaign gift. He initially indicated he would give $25,000, but after prayer and considering his other gift commitments, he decided to give $10,000. Our proper response should be gratitude, not disappointment.
Major donors face everyday trials just like you. They may be thinking about giving a gift when life interrupts them with a car accident, health issues, or chaos at work. These challenges can impact their gift amount or timing. Steve was planning to ask a major donor for a $150,000 gift. When they met for coffee the donor shared, “I just learned my administrative assistant embezzled $150,000 from our office.” Steve wisely kept the gift proposal in his notebook for another day.
Satan throws his ultimate weapons of fear and doubt at generous people. It’s only human to question, “If I give, will I have enough to meet my needs?” (Matt. 6:33) or “How can I be sure God will ‘throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it?’” (Mal. 3:10). Giving requires immense faith no matter what your net worth. Fear can surprise even a well-intentioned donor at any time in the giving process—even after they have made a verbal commitment to support your ministry. Pray fervently for your donors to stand firm against the devil’s excuses.
Think About This: Faith is the answer to Satan’s attack. “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7). Surround your ministry partners with your shield of faith to extinguish the flaming arrows aimed at their hearts.
Response: Lord, please protect our donors from Satan’s attacks. Give them wisdom to know what to give, to whom, and when.
Ron Haas has served the Lord as a pastor, the vice president of advancement of a Bible college, a Christian foundation director, a board member and a fundraising consultant. He’s authored three books: Ask for a Fish – Bold Faith-Based Fundraising, Simply Share – Bold, Grace-Based Giving, and Keep on Asking – Bold, Spirit-Led Fundraising. He regularly presents fundraising workshops at ministry conferences and has written fundraising articles for Christian Leadership Alliance’s Outcomes magazine.