Why is it we need money?
Andrea and I went to my parents this weekend, and during our goodbyes we groaned to my sister about work (I know, moaning is such a bad habit). I don’t remember how it came up, but my basic comment was: “Andrea needs to go to work or 24-7 might collapse; I need to go to work to pay the rent” (so that Andrea can continue to work for 24-7 Prayer).
Now, 24-7 wouldn’t collapse without Andrea. No one person is vital, to that or to any other organisation. But the non-voluntary staff of 24-7 prayer in the UK amount to (about) 9 people, working both for the UK base and the International team. And Andrea is not at all insignificant as a part of that small team.
We both love 24-7, the work that it does and its vision to catalyse pray-ers who bring God-shaped change to the world. It is a vision we wholeheartedly support; an organisation, a mission, and a community we would both happily give time and energy to.
Andrea is lucky to get some money from 24-7 in return for the work she does for them. Many of the other staff work on a personal support basis, working for free and raising the money they need to live from personal donations. 24-7 Prayer works hard to run a world-wide prayer movement on the budget of a local church; all of the staff, including Andrea, willingly give time and energy to this vision. This means that I need to work to support her.
Now, I want to do this, because I’m really proud of my wife and the work she does. I love the way her job keeps changing to challenge her, and how she rises to meet that challenge and grows as a result. I’m proud of her passion and enthusiasm, her belief in what she does. So I really don’t mind working to support her in this.
Its just that I’d love to help too, and I can’t, because the bills need to be paid.
There are lots of things I would do, if I didn’t need money.
Travel more, for a start.
But aside from wild fantasies, I really do have some things I want to pursue, work I would like to do, that I can’t because it wouldn’t pay the bills. I am an ideas person at heart, and running through my head are various hair-brained schemes to do with entrepreneurial businesses and creative communities. Our church is full of start-ups at the moment (FreshSPRING, FreshHOPE, Cokoon, Micah’s Call, Panoramic Earth), and I want to be able to help those fledgling ideas flourish. To resource them, inspire them, draw them together and give them good foundations. I reckon I could even make it pay in a year or so… but who would pay the bills now?
We need money.
Its only one idea, out of several, but it excites me more than work does at present. But it won’t happen (bar a miracle), because we need money. It doesn’t, after all, grow on trees…
I wonder why?