What if there was a Cooperative program for faith missions (basically meaning independent baptist missionaries)? I know that goes against being independent, but independent in the Christian circles does not sound too biblical anyway. I know, I know, it can be good in some ways, but with missions, is being independent a good thing? It may have once been, but with the demands a missionary faces today, I do not believe it is the best.
With southern baptists, at this point, they have such a broad base that it comes from all the donations of many churches. Something independent baptists are too independent to have. So how would a Cooperative program with independent missions work? Glad you asked, cause I have a few ideas, that would all seem impossible. That is right. Think about how many missionaries are out there to support. There is plenty, which means it would take plenty to fully support them. So the Cooperative program would not be able to start fully supporting each missionary. But it could start by supporting some missionaries for some and then continue to grow as it gains credibility.
The Cooperative program would probably start out small and it would have to be a business making money, not just depending on donations. There would have to be people with business minds to run it and be successful. There would be prayer. There would be investment. There would be work. It could start with one business, but continue on to many more. In the book the Circle Maker, they have a coffee house called Ebeneezer that now gives six figures yearly to missions. What if we started a chain of businesses whose profits went completely to missions? There could be restaurants or coffee houses, stores or garage sales, car lots or shoe lots. I do not know what God will use in this, but I know He can use anything.
In middle school my Pastor gave the whole congregation one dollar each and preached about the parable of talents. Many of us did not just hide the talent so that we could give it back; we invested it. I bought jolly ranchers and sold them for 5 cents each. I do not remember how much money I gave back after a month or two, but I am pretty sure it was around 20 dollars. Many others had been even more creative and lucrative. I believe investing is biblical, but in our missions giving, we look at the giving as an investment for the kingdom of God. And that is right; but what about actually investing our money before it reaches the missionary.
What if we could put it into a business that will give back two-fold, three-fold or more? I know that investing can be risky, but that is what the servant with the one talent thought and the master labeled him a fool.
In 2009 I introduced a real estate idea on my personal blog and it did not seem too popular. I am back at it again wanting to introduce it. So look for that next. But if that is not the idea that God will use, what else is out there? Do you have any ideas? I think investment is a worthy idea that will not have a huge initial impact, but can be very profitable in the long run.
Missions Works! God chose to give us the Great Commission. He chose to use weak vessels to carry out the greatest task on earth and because He initiated the plan, it will be accomplished. The purpose of this blog is find ways in which we may be more efficient in this task. We would like to generate healthy conversation that will result in more results for our resources. While no article written here will perfect our missions methods, we pray that we can network together to more efficiently use our resources for the spread of the gospel. While there are many topics explored in this site, the top trends to raise our efficiency are listed both above and below to the right as links that can take you to an article explaining the why and how. Please, feel free to comment on articles and share this site within your network of Pastors/missionaries/friends.