From a business perspective, supporting an American missionary overseas is not always the best call. A single American may need to raise two or three times what a local couple in that country would need in order to fund their full time ministry. And the local couple would probably be more competent (in most ways) at the work than the American (or other Westerner).
If that American had one child (or six) that cost suddenly increases even more dramatically. And then Americans, like other countries, have our unique problems related to our current social issues. The monthly fee for my medical insurance, for example, is probably enough to fully support a local couple.
However we are not in a business making investments like a businessman. This is the Kingdom, and the CEO of the Kingdom is not limited in resources to the point where he can only make the best investments. He has the finances to take risky bets. He even has the finances to invest in that person He really liked, even though the guy probably won’t be but mediocre at his job. Sometimes God might invest in someone simply because He wants to work with him.
What does this mean for us? It means we don’t just support the most financially strategic people. We support people to do what the Lord has called them to do simply because the Lord called them to it. We support people to full time ministry because the Lord wants us to pray for more laborers and then rejoice when they arrive.
There will always be someone more financially strategic. There is someone somewhere in Africa who is an incredible minister of the Gospel, is unbelievably effective at what he does, and can live off a gourd or three each day. To participate in his ministry financially would cost pennies and have huge payoff; he would be, by the world’s definition, the best financial investment. But he’s not the only one the Lord called. And I’m arguing we should support people for who they are in the Kingdom, because they are humble ministers of the gospel of Christ, and because the God of heaven called them to go.
Don’t be stupid with your money, you are, after all, called to steward it wisely. But being stingy in your investments in the Kingdom for “business” reasons is neither wise, nor good stewardship.