When we started in our construction ministry, we were unaware of the many challenges and obstacles we would face. We have faced a wide-range of issues such as working with limited resources, dealing with severe weather conditions, financial constraints, safety hazards and cultural differences. Despite these difficulties, we have persevered and achieved some incredible milestones over the years.
Financially, when we started out to help build a church, we were living in an RV that we were able to buy with the limited funds we had. We sold everything we owned by auction and with the money, we were able to buy a used RV and truck. We had very little leftover for spending after these big purchases. It was our faith in God and His calling us to the mission field that drove us to leave family, friends and all behind and go from Michigan to Texas.
It was by far, the best decision we made, the decision to follow our Lord on the road. Has it been easy? No. Has it been worth it all? Yes. Would we do it again? Yes and Yes again.
Finances were not a concern for us when we started. We just left with whatever money we had and hit the road. Friends and family advised against us going and had many logical reasons why we shouldn't go and frankly, the reasons made sense. But I don't know about you, but our God is not One who asks if it makes sense, he simply says to "God and make disciples in my name."
So we followed Him by faith and prayer.
Since then, we have learned much about being construction missionaries. In this article I thought I would share how we break down any donations and income we receive for our ministry.
First, we use our local credit union for any finances we have. We have chosen a credit union because so many credit unions around the country are connected by an inner system.
We keep a separate bank account that we use onl
y for our ministry money. This is where all of our finances are deposited and kept as a reference in case anyone ever needs an itemized list of exactly how we spend our money.
When we receive a donation or any income, we have one checking account with five different savings accounts attached to it that I use to breakdown our finances. This ensures that we will not spend money we do not have. Let me explain how it works for us.
When we receive any monies, it first goes into the main account at our credit union, which is our checking account. Once or twice a month, depending on any donations we received, I will take all the monies received and do internal transfers to our savings accounts attached to the checking account. With the credit union account, these separate savings accounts are free and do not result in any extra fees. As a missionary, every dollar is important. Those extra fees may add up so watch for any with whatever bank or credit union you choose.
The first saving account I transfer money into is our tithing account. We have chosen 20% to be given to tithes. We then breakdown this money into giving two different ways. With prayer, we ask God to give us direction on where to send it. We give to either churches or ministries, depending on which He lays on our hearts.
The next account is our Scholarship/Hospitality account. We give this account 5% of our donations. In this account, we are able to
send kids to summer camps or use the money to serve meals for homeless or folks working at the projects with us. At one place, we were able to buy a barbecue grill for veterans at a VA home. It is basically our fun and food account depending on how God leads us to give it away.
The third account is our emergency account which receives 5%. We use this account for blown tires, when something breaks in the RV, etc.
The fourth account is a Tool account. We use this money to replace personal tools that break on the jobsite, for replacing drill bits, sandpaper, etc.
The fifth account is for office supplies, patterns, material, etc. This is my side of the ministry and I am often called to sew or cook for someone.
The last account is our checking account, which gets 50% of our income. We try to always stay within 50% of any income or donations we receive. Truck repairs, fuel and new tires come out of the regular checking account.
I hope this helps if you are considering a life as a construction missionary. While planning is important, our faith and trust is by far, more important. If you believe God is calling you into a life serving as a Construction missionary, please follow His calling. It is not an easy life, it has many challenges, but it is the most rewarding life we know. If you have any questions, please contact us. My husband and I are always ready to talk about how our great God is working and moving around this country. There i room for many more construction missionaries.