4 WAYS TO CHANGE THE WORLD
Growing up in a Christian community, giving was synonymous to tithing & tithing meant putting money in the offering plate at church. My dad always put a check in the offering. He always folded in half so you couldn’t see the amount & his hand covered almost the whole thing so you maybe didn’t even see him drop it in.
I knew giving could very well happen outside of church– like when we shopped for toys for kids at Christmas time. And it was that kind of giving that sparked Joy. If you are a part of a church that is your community & you feel confident where your money is going, that’s great. But I also think there’s thought to be given to finding an organization that sparks a passion in you. It may still be donating money (& not much of it, necessarily), but when it’s a cause that sits close in your heart, it changes you.
I still think Bob Goff says it best (& that’s why it’s on the homepage of my website):
“For those who resonate with formulas, here it is: add your whole life, your loves, your passions, and your interests together with what God said He wants us to be about, and that’s your answer.” -Bob Goff
Another way to discover your “answer” is the way our caseworker phrased these two questions in our adoption interview four years ago: What are you passionate about? What breaks your heart? Put the two together.
When Blake & I started doing the research & talking about what we were passionate about & what broke our hearts, it became simple. We were passionate about people all over the planet feeling the love & Joy of Jesus. Our hearts break over children in the midst of suffering.
These are the four organizations we have grown to love, admire, & advocate for. Two are international & two are domestic.
Preemptive Love upholds the goal to unmake war, which means consistent work for everyone involved considering headquarters are in Iraq. Focusing primarily on Iraq & Syria but also bringing aid to other countries, as well, Preemptive shows up on the front lines when tragedy strikes, bringing food, shelter, & medical aid. Preemptive creates jobs, helping families build new lives together. Preemptive is building community with diverse people, being true peacemakers & working to end new war before it starts. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting with the Director of Development, Fred Perry, & I can tell you with 100% certainty, every dollar given to Preemptive makes the world a brighter place. Something that I love about Preemptive is the way they share news. Following them on Instagram, they share the ins & outs of what is going on in the Middle East, & where there’s usually a feeling of disparity or hopelessness after reading a story like that from a news source, Preemptive always take the perspective of looking for the light & being the light. Refreshing, right?
DFW Angels is a fairly new branch of Austin Angels, an organization supporting children & their caretakers in the foster care system. Their Love Box system pairs volunteers with a foster care family to provide holistic support on a monthly basis. Their Dare to Dream program is an every other week one on one mentorship program for high school students. On any given day, there are roughly 500,000 children in the foster care system in the United States, alone. The average age of a child entering foster care is eight years old. I love how DFW Angels is changing the narrative of foster care.
Speaking of Bob Goff! Love Does fights for human rights & provides education in six countries: Uganda, Nepal, India, Somalia, Afghanistan, & Iraq. If you’ve read Bob’s book, Love Does, you know about his encounters with witch doctors, which explains why he started a witch doctor school in Uganda. Several countries have schools, as well as a hospital in Iraq, and girls’ homes & a baby home in Somalia & Nepal. In India, Love Does teams up with law enforcement to raid brothels, rescuing underage children & providing safe homes for them. Bob makes faith simple, & he puts it clearly– Love Everybody, Always.
You may have heard of Young Life before, a ministry for high school students. YoungLives is under that umbrella & serves teen moms & their babies. If you want to know anything about what this organization is all about, this video explains it best. Whether moms are going to YoungLives club, meeting with their mentor, or going to camp (which is seriously amazing!), they are being fed the Joy & Love & Peace of Jesus, & for some, it’s the first time in their lives. YoungLives is changing the hearts of our current generation & getting a jumpstart on the future, too.