One day I was trying to find the business address of a man who had made his first donation to our organization. It was not a large gift, but it was a significant one. I did not recognize the man’s name, and I wondered who he might be and how he had learned about us. I wanted to stop by to meet him and say thanks. I spent a half-hour that morning trying to find the address; even my GPS was no help. Frustrated, I finally gave up and decided to try again later.
That afternoon I finally succeeded in finding the address. It was in a fancy, high-rise office building, surrounded by hundreds of expensive cars. I could see business people going in and out of the building. All of a sudden, I felt intimidated and fearful. Thoughts like this began to run through my mind: “This man does not want to meet you. He’s too busy and too important to see you. He probably will reject any efforts to get to know him.”
The more those thoughts galloped through my mind, the more intimidated I felt. It was late, I was out of town, I was tired, and I felt fearful. So, I decided to just drive out of the parking lot without trying to meet the man—a thank you letter would do just fine, I rationalized. Like Jonah, I simply didn’t want to do what I knew I needed to do.
However, before I could exit the parking lot, another set of thoughts rushed my mind. “You’ve spent all this time finding this man, and now you’re giving up? What are you so fearful about? Get yourself back in there—just go make the call!”
That initial visit with this man has turned into a friendship. He has become one of the most generous donors to our organization in our 30-year history. What if I had driven out of that parking lot, never having met that man? Would he have become such a generous supporter? I doubt it. And, to think how close I came to running away like Jonah!
I learned a very valuable lesson that day. Do not listen to the voices of fear or discouragement when meeting potential donors and asking them for their financial help. Ask God to quell your anxieties, and then . . .
Just go make the call!