Day Two: Wednesday, October 27: Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds
Our son Chandler is a serious and inquisitive individual. He is unlikely to conform in accordance to anyone’s expectations, especially as a result of social pressure. He can generally be seen with frown lines on his forehead between and above the eyebrows. That is … until he smiles.
When he smiles, his entire character is converted into radiant light that can light a candle. It is a dramatic and complete change in appearance and character. When Chandler smiles, his whole self transforms. It is a deep shift from an ordinarily serious young man into a child-like person with high expectations as if it was Christmas morning. He has a whole new way of seeing things. The outlook for him moves from checking things to prove they are wrong to an attitude that is bright with anticipation and not too terribly different than the way the younger son did when he was starving far from his true home and coming into the celebration that awaits him (Luke 15:17-20). It’s called a transformation.
It’s a transformation from how we see and think and act. It is a shift of attention in which we set our mind on divine things,
“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2).
As the guilty sinner that I am, I am often begging for funds. Yet the people I surround myself with remind me as business people that they would never get much money if they beg for it. These business people believe that they have something important to offer. Without apology they invite people to be a part of their endeavor or, you might say, vision.
And so as I am learning from my friends, I extend to you my new way of thinking as it relates to your resources. The Catch Ministry’s Vision is yours as is its Purpose. Yes, we want to extend our reach by introducing to everyone the Grace given to us so that it can be given to them. That is our vision. And our purpose or our business is developing disciples to go out wherever they are as Boots on the Ground to introduce Grace Turned Outward to everyone, everywhere. But if the Catch Ministry’s Vision and Purpose are not yours or you do not benefit from both, then you really ought not financially support the Ministry. If you do not experience a benefit by making your resources available to us, making your gift good only for us who receive it, it is not fund-raising in the spiritual sense. Fund-raising from the point of view of the gospel says to you: “I will take your money and invest it in this Vision only if it is good for your spiritual journey, only if it is good for your spiritual health.” In other words, we are calling you to an experience of transformation:
“You won’t become poorer; you will become richer by giving.” We can confidently declare with the Apostle Paul: “You will be enriched in every way for your great generosity…” (2 Corinthians 9:11).
If this confident approach and invitation is lacking, then we are disconnected from our Vision and have lost the direction of our Purpose. We also will be cut off from you, because we will find ourselves begging for money and you will find yourself merely handing us a check. No real connection has been created because we have not asked you to come and be with us. We have not given you an opportunity to participate in the spirit of what we are about. We may have completed a successful transaction, but we have not entered into a successful relationship. Here we see that if fund-raising as ministry invites you to a new relationship with your wealth, it also calls us to be transitioned in relation to our needs. If we come back from asking you for money and we feel exhausted and somehow tainted by unspiritual activity, there is something wrong. We must not let ourselves be tricked into thinking that fund-raising is only a secular activity. As a form of ministry, fund-raising is as spiritual as giving a sermon, entering a time of prayer, visiting the sick, or caring for the poor. So fundraising has to help us with our transformation too.
Now here is the hard question and it is directed to me: Am I willing to be transformed from my fear of asking, my anxiety about being rejected or feeling humiliated, my depression when someone says, “No, I’m not interested in giving to the Ministry”? Have I gained the freedom to ask without fear, to truly love fund-raising as a form of ministry? I have to be honest with you. I am transitioning — half way into Chandler’s smile. Yet, if I believe what I am writing is true, and I do, and if I am willing to act on my belief, then fund-raising will be good for my spiritual life. And so I ask you to pray for me as I pray for any of you who are in the process of transitioning into this new way of seeing fund-raising as ministry that invites you to a new relationship with your wealth. It’s a two-way street this thing called fund-raising as a ministry. It calls us to be transitioned in relation to your resources and the Ministry’s needs.
Fund-raising is always a call to transformation And this call comes to both those who seek funds and those who have funds. Whether we are asking for money or giving money, we are drawn together by God, who is about to do a new thing through our collaboration,
See, I am doing a new thing!
Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?
I am making a way in the wilderness
and streams in the wasteland (Isaiah 43:19).
And so here is a challenge for you and for me: Let’s walk together in confidence, connected together because of our Vision and our Purpose. And let’s participate in the spirit of what we are about.
Let’s light some candles!
An Exciting Announcement — Hurray!
We are very pleased to announce in our very first day of fund-raising, we have received $2,000 of the $15,000 required. Many, many thanks to you who are out in front and they are:
- Neil from Lancaster, Pennsylvania
- Athelyn from Phoenix, Arizona
- John from Coralville, Iowa
- Patrick from Dundee, Michigan
- Lisa from Sunland, California
- Michael from Cambria, California
- Greg from Wilmington, North Carolina
Partner with theses men and women by contributing today and click here: or if you wish, send your contribution to The Catch Ministry, Inc., 1278 Glenneyre, Laguna Beach, California 92651.
An Important Notice
The Board of Directors are currently reviewing the 72-page One Voice, Many People Report prepared from the “Your Participation Matters!” questionnaire responses (the “Report”). We hope to turn around the Report in short order so that it can be in your hands soon.
In the next few weeks to come, we will be creating the Report’s Action Plan together. Stay tuned to learn how. We promise you — you are not going to want to miss out on this opportunity to be one of many people who speak with one voice — the Voice of Christ to this century’s generations.