I listen to a lot of public radio. It's smart. It's witty. It's usually civil. All that yelling on certain unnamed networks STRESSES me out. They're probably a little biased, but hey, who isn't?
This week our NPR station is doing it's spring fundraiser. I don't know why, but I never change the station during pledge drives. Maybe I'm just sympathetic. I know what it feels like to raise money.
Driving down 280 today I listened as Ira Glass explained that 70% of regular NPR listeners never contribute to their local station. A recent poll discovered why. The majority of listeners do not give because they believe that "Someone else will do it."
Wow. I was actually thinking that exact same thing as I was stopped at a traffic light. "I enjoy listening to this station, but someone who has more money than us will give." I often do not give...do not act...because I believe someone else will do it.
This is too bad for organizations like NPR. It is also too bad for your local church. Your local homeless shelter. Crisis pregnancy centers. Food banks. Children's hospitals. And little non-profits working with orphans in Uganda.
Because as much as public radio might "need" your support, I'd argue that these other organizations might need it more. And that thought that "some else will do it" probably also keeps 70% of us from helping them. If you're thinking someone else will do it someone else is probably thinking you will do it. Nothing gets done this way.
Naturally we can't all do everything. But we can all do SOMETHING. There are a lot of people in the world. There are a lot of people in the church. If we each began to believe that "Someone else WON'T do it," the world might look different. "The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few."
But I'll tell you a secret. This is about SO much more than what a cause might need from you. Imagine it like a giant football game. So where would you rather be...In the stadium, watching...cheering...booing? On the sidelines, part of the team, but sitting out most of the time? Or in the action, with a risk of potentially getting hurt or looking like an idiot, but with the thrill of participation...the opportunity to even score a winning touchdown?
We have one life. One opportunity to play for His glory. The Lord will raise up people to accomplish His work. He will. Don't you want to be one of those people? One of the 30% who did something. Don't you want to be one of those people who when the Lord asks "Whom shall I send and who will go for us?" says "Here am I, send ME!"
It is risky to give. It is risky to really give of yourself. To care. To hope. To try. But what you have to gain is SO much sweeter than what you could possibly lose. "For this light, momentary affliction is preparing us for an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison." 2 Cor 4:17
Thoreau said "Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them." Sing now. Sing loudly now so that you may have something to sing about then.