I absolutely hate it!
When I hear the word my blood-pressure rises, my stomach ties itself into knots, and I literally feel the strength drain out of me.
It makes me want to run to the high hills...
Bury my head under a pillow...
But, no matter how it makes me feel, I just can't seem to escape it.
Asking people to help fund something I believe in ... but can't produce all the necessary money for on my own.
This time around I'm trying to bring over our daughter from Ukraine on a student visa - not an easy thing to do when her former address is an orphanage.
Eight months of intense fundraising to raise $20,000+.
Well, kind of ...
I've avoided it mostly.
I've tried to pay as much out of pocket as possible...
Hoped I'd find my name attached to a hefty inheritance...
Wished I'd stumble into an abandoned gold mine.
No such luck.
I've sold the book I wrote and the CD my husband created. (Thankfully, people have given rave reviews on both.)
We've done yard sales. We've started a small side-business to offset costs.
I'd so much rather sell something than ask for donations, although I have written a few letters.
Some people have helped with various sized contributions.
Some have said they are financially unable to help at this time, but have committed to praying for us. (These people are the best. They understand that prayers are so much more valuable than money.)
A few, there are always those few, have had some negative comments ("Why add another expense?").
But, the vast majority say not a word.
And, maybe, that's what gets me the most. That nothingness. That feeling of not being heard at all. That empty realization that my heartfelt request just doesn't matter to the rest of the world -- it is NOT important. I am NOT important. Our daughter is NOT important. That is the message carried across the deafening roar of silent disregard.
And, yet, our daughter is important to God.
There are too many miracles in this fundraising venture to think otherwise. The $1000 check that appeared in our mailbox before we even asked. The money that appeared out of nowhere sent by people who didn't even know us. The answered prayers. It just shows me that this isn't our fundraising project. It is God's. And it isn't even our daughter we are bringing over either. She belongs to God too. He is touching hearts on her behalf to bring her here ... one dollar at a time.
Maybe the "F-word" of working with orphans isn't really fundraising ... maybe it's faith.
And God is teaching me how to trust Him through our efforts to bring our daughter home.
He is also showing me that it's not my efforts at fundraising that are most important. While it is vital that I do my best, it is more important that I seek Him first. I cannot lose myself in a fundraising frenzy and expect to be successful. I must keep my eyes on Him constantly for it is He who has woven our daughter's life into ours through events to miraculous to deny. It is He who put the desire to bring her here in the first place. Before we even knew what our plans were, He had a plan.
So today, as the shadow of another payment deadline looms menacingly on our horizon, I quietly reflect on the verse from Isaiah 26:3, "You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you: because he trusts in you." King James 2000. Humbly, I murmur a prayer, " Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief." Mark 9:24, KJV.