The Ts are crossed and the Is are dotted, and your church is ready to begin raising money for its expansion project. The pre-planning is complete and now comes the strategic part: fundraising.

But wait …

Before fundraising begins and before the expansion plan is developed, here are four critical pillars on which to base your capital campaign.

1. Clear Vision. Nothing causes a plan to fall off the rails more quickly than a muddled vision. Developing and casting a vision for your project takes time. Don’t rush this significant aspect of the process. What vision has God placed on the hearts of church leaders? What does this vision mean and how best do you accomplish it? These are all important considerations to develop before you begin your expansion project.

Consider: 1 Chronicles 28, where David listened and followed God’s clear vision: Solomon, David’s son, would be the one to build God’s temple.

2. Strong Prayer Focus. When asking your congregation to give sacrificially, you need to rely on the Holy Spirit to work in people’s hearts. While we tend to focus on the monetary aspect of fundraising, it’s really about the heart. God ultimately provides the resources to make your expansion a reality. He can take “loaves and fish” and multiply them exponentially.

Consider: In 1 Chronicles 29:14 (NIV), David prayed, “Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.”

3. Leadership Commitment. Unless the church leadership is completely behind the project—and leads by example—it will inevitably fail. Their commitment should be visible early and often, informally and formally, personally and congregation-wide. It’s important for the entire leadership to communicate their unmitigated support for the project early on—and throughout –what can be a long-term process.

Consider: King David and his leaders first committed their contributions to the temple construction. “The people rejoiced at the willing response of their leaders, for they had given freely and wholeheartedly to the Lord” (1 Chronicles 29:9, NIV). They invited the “rest of the people” to participate.

4. Wide Participation. The more people committed to the project, the more likely success will follow and any obstructions will be removed fairly quickly. God uses equal sacrifice rather than equal size gifts. When we give sacrificially, we demonstrate obedience and gratitude for all He has given us.

Consider: In 2 Corinthians 8:12 (NLT), Paul tells the Corinthians: “Whatever you give is acceptable if you give it eagerly. And give according to what you have, not what you don’t have.”

A capital campaign process can be long and arduous. But these core principles can help make that process more fruitful and God-filled.

Check out CIF’s Campaigns and Consulting services for more information or to help your church/ministry with its next capital campaign. 

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