Is there anything
done for God that does not first begin with prayer? Perhaps
one of the best examples of God meeting needs through prayer would
be George Mueller. Mueller began homes for orphans in Great
Britain during the 1800s and helped thousands of children during his
years of ministry. Mueller stated on the subject of prayer:
It is not enough to begin to pray,
nor to pray aright; nor is it enough to continue for a time to pray,
but we must pray patiently, believingly continue in prayer, until we
obtain an answer; and further, we have not only to continue in
prayer unto the end, but we have also to believe that God does hear
us and will answer our prayers. Most frequently we fail in not
continuing in prayer until the blessing is obtained, and in not
expecting the blessing.
George Mueller in
establishing homes for children had the principle that he would not
ask anyone for funds, but our Heavenly Father. He walked by
faith and looked to the Lord to supply the needs for the orphanages
that he built. The first home for boys and girls opened in
1836 and all the money for the purchase of housing, food, clothes
and support of the workers came through prayer. No funds were
ever borrowed and there were no special appeals to expand the homes
or meet operating expenses. Mueller kept a notebook of prayer
requests and how they were answered and listed 50,000 specific
answers to prayer. The Mueller homes grew to eventually
accommodate two thousand children.
Not only did
Mueller have the homes for children, but also travel the world in
preaching the Gospel. He went on seventeen missionary
journeys. It is said that he preached six to eight thousand
times outside of his home city of Bristol, England. His
messages were heard by more than three million people in the United
States, Europe, Canada, Asia, the Orient, Africa, South America and
Australia. Mueller also founded the Scriptural Knowledge
Institution which supported missionaries, schools and scripture
distribution. The organization helped around 120,000 students,
distributed 300,000 Bibles and 1,500,000 New Testaments.
There was also the distribution of over 100,000,000 witness tracts.
His story is one
that is truly amazing. I wanted to learn from him because, I
have to tell you that I feel that I walk by faith, but I present our
financial needs to all who will listen and perhaps many more that
donít. I read books about George Muellerís life and searched
the internet to find out more about this man of God. What
could I learn about his approach to funding ministry?
I donít want to
take anything away from his commitment to using only prayer for
fundraising, but as I look back on what he did I see some very good
principles in fundraising. It could be said that he was a man
who exercised some important keys that we use in fundraising
principals today, but he was totally unaware of it.
The most important
element is that he prayed for the needs of the ministry.
Ultimately all things are in the control of God and we must lay our
needs before the Throne of Grace. When the disciples came to
Jesus and asked for instruction on how to pray Jesus instructed us
to request our ďdaily bread.Ē Bread in Hebrew culture was of
course a basic staple for life. The symbolism is to request
not only bread, but the necessities of life. Certainly all
good things come from our Heavenly Father.
spoke about the many wonderful things the Lord was doing through the
childrenís homes. He gave stirring testimonies of the Lordís
provision. When he spoke in various places sometimes almost
entire messages would be made up of testimonies of how the Lord had
provided for every detail and material need of the Mueller homes.
He was such a dynamic and powerful speaker people wanted to be a
part of the hand of God in supplying for these homes.
about the needs of the homes were a description of various needs and
how the Lord supplied every detail. When he spoke people
were so moved that they could not wait for the opportunity to become
involved in a ministry that so clearly was a dynamic and anointed
work of the Lord. You could not ask for a more dynamic
illustration of the needs of the ministry than listening to a George
Mueller report on how the hand of God moved in meeting the financial
Not only would the
story of the homes be shared in Great Britain, but since George
Mueller traveled the world in proclamation of the Gospel he would
also tell the story of the orphanages. It is said that the
Mueller homes received donations from every civilized country on the
planet. Not only was he a speaker, but also an author.
Mueller was one of the more popular Christian authors of the day.
His love was for the Lord and telling the Good News of Jesus Christ.
His desire to go anywhere at anytime to proclaim the good news
expanded his range of ministry and of course expanded the donor pool
of people excited about his work and wanting to participate.
George Mueller was also very good at expressing thanks and making
people feel good and appreciated for their gift.
Now letís review
some very important principles we learn from someone who never asked
anyone for a donation.
- He prayed for
the needs of the ministry.
- He gave soul
stirring testimonies of the Lordís provision that motivated
- Mueller expanded
the borders of the ministry beyond orphanages and beyond the
region which benefited the most from the homes.
- The donors knew
their donation was making a difference and was appreciated.
Even though George
Mueller never developed a fundraising strategy the principals he
practiced should be copied by all needing to raise funds.
There is enough here to establish your plans and keep you going for
is observing forty years in broadcasting in 2009. Great Plains
Christian Radio consists of seven full power stations and thirty-six
translators. The flagship station, KJIL, has been named Station of
the Year most recently by NRB and in the past they have received
that honor from GMA, NAB (Marconi), Focus on The Family and the
Kansas Association of Broadcasters. Don Hughes and his wife
Polly have been married for thirty-one years and they have six
Don Hughes can be reached at