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Bill Hybels Explains How to Ask People for Money

“Offer wonderful people fantastic opportunities to invest in the kingdom, if God so leads them. Who can argue with an approach like that?”

What does this look like in practice? Bill Hybels shares an example of a conversation with a member of his church:

Over the lunch table I gave him our vision: “We want to help every church on planet Earth reach its full redemptive potential,” I told him. “We want to see churches led by leaders, taught by teachers, and administrated by administrators. We want to help church leaders establish clear missions and values so they can reach lost people in their communities and guide them toward spiritual maturity. Until our dying breath we want to help the bride of Christ become a force against which the very gates of hell cannot prevail.”

When I finally stopped talking, he was wide-eyed. “That’s huge!” he said. “You bet your life it is,” I answered. “And we need some huge investors to turn this vision into reality. Will you pray and find out if God wants you to help us?”

Perhaps one of the reasons people don't give (more) is how the opportunity is positioned.

“I don’t know if you’ve ever noticed it, but very few people get fired up about financing mundane needs. I don’t blame them. If they’re like me, they want to invest their limited funds in a vision far grander than paying utility bills, restocking janitorial supplies, or maintaining the church copy machine. They’re not going to put their annual bonus in the Christmas Eve offering unless they have some assurance that it’s going to make a significant difference in the world. They want to know that their hard-earned money will be used to fund authentic ministry that impacts real people.”

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  1. Stan

    June 27, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    While I agree with the concept here, it can create some issues that I’ve seen firsthand.

    1) What if my ministry has seen very little fruit, isn’t ‘project’ or definable goal based? For example, sharing Jesus in all sorts of ways with a people group of 15,000,000 who are of another faith and have no interest in knowing Him?  The work amongst these people has been going on in all sorts of ways for over 150 years. Is it making a ‘significant difference in the world’? Could be seen as no – but it’s surely what God wants.

    2) People who struggle to communicate in this largely extroverted/sales-type manner can lose funding so that the next big thing can be funded. I’m sure that’s not what Bill wants, but it’s truth.

    3) Hand in hand with both of the above, ministries can be judged on whether they have results and/or outstanding speakers. I don’t think that should be the criteria for funding or infact any support of any ministry.

    I guess it’s just worth thinking about…

  2. Steven Kryger

    June 27, 2012 at 2:11 pm

    Hi Stan, I actually think that in your first point you communicated a compelling vision – sharing Jesus with 15 million people who have no interest in knowing Him. It’s a great vision, and one people would give to. I don’t think people need to be extroverted to get others giving – they just need to have thought through carefully how to share this vision with others. 

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