Normal People. Doing Good. Changing the World.

HelpOneNow

Have you ever been scared to do something? Something outside of your comfort zone? Something that may change…everything?

Deep in our hearts, we battle with this notion that we were born for a reason, for something bigger, but, we are also scared. We fear that maybe, just maybe, our lives will be flipped upside down, that we will take “living on mission” a bit too far, and once we cross the proverbial line, can we go back to normal, comfort, excess?

So we became paralyzed.

And, speaking of normal – what does that even mean?  Who’s normal and who’s not?

I was living a very “normal” life in Austin, TX; everything was going good. I had a great marriage, two amazing daughters, a new house, and even a new puppy. I was planting a church with some of the best people in the world, and my wife’s business was thriving. Plus, I had never ending access to amazing Texas BBQ and Tex-Mex. Could life get any better?

All of these things are good and beautiful, as long as they don’t become idols.

 

A Life Interrupted Is A Life Inspired

 

The beauty of the gospel is simple–God’s ways are better than our ways. The path that God leads us down is the best path. I had to learn that the hard way.

I had to learn after years of ignoring that “still small voice” that was gnawing at my soul, that voice that was trying to bring to light the plight of the orphan, widow, and slave.

But, I was too comfortable to obey, to lean in, to care. It took me five years to say YES!

I finally relented and took a trip to Zimbabwe. On that trip, I had a moment that changed everything for me. I met a starving orphan at an abandoned gas station. He was hungry, thirsty, and desperate. He asked me if he could work for me to earn money, as he did not want to beg for food.

He was eight years old.

And he wanted a job.

I looked this desperate orphan in the eye, and I told him I could not help.  As we drove away, I was broken. Five years later, I’m still broken. But, it was that moment that helped me realize that God uses normal people to change the world.

A Radical Normal

I started Help One Now to catalyze everyday, normal people to engage extreme poverty by partnering with local leaders (nationals) who are already caring for orphan kids and working to see their communities transformed through spiritual development, education, job creation, and healthcare.

When I returned from my trip in Zimbabwe, I began to have conversations with friends who wanted to help, but they did not know how to do it. So, we began to create simple tools, like our Garage Sale for Orphans initiative.

Over the last few years, we raised close to $500,000 to help fight poverty. We used these funds to bring clean water to desperate communities, create jobs through micro-lending, build houses for those who lost homes in the Haiti earthquake, and in the last year, we’ve rescued over 40 kids from trafficking in Haiti.

Our excess is being used to crush poverty and see communities thrive!

Join the Movement

We did all of this, and much more, by normal, everyday people saying “yes” to throwing a garage sale party, picking a project that they’re passionate about, and donating the funds of the garage sale to that project. These people are the new radical–a crazy tribe of doers who refuse to make excuses, but choose to engage in issues that God is passionate about.

HelpOneNow 2

 

 

Yet, we all know that life is busy and stressful and sometimes overwhelming, and we all need to find pathways to help us engage and make a difference. That’s what Garage Sale for Orphans is all about.

We’re on a mission to raise $1,000,000 in the next two years to fight global extreme poverty.

I’m asking you, the Allume Community, to be part of this movement;

Sign Up Here H1N

Rally some friends and family, throw a garage sale party, pick a project, and make a difference.

Christin

Christin has a heart to encourage and equip women in aspects of discipleship, marriage, mothering, writing, blogging, and community. She sees the body of Christ as an important community of encouragement and discipleship and works to foster that around the web. She has been married 13 years and has 7 children ranging in age from 11 down to 3. You can find her encouraging moms at her blog Joyful Mothering, writing some deeper thoughts on life and writing at ChristinSlade.com, and learning more about Google+.

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Veil of Tears: Hope is on the Way

A warm welcome to Gospel for Asia.

unreached women

Did you know that the women of Asia are one of the most unreached people groups in the world today?

The heart-breaking reality is that millions of these women who are precious, valued, treasured by Jesus, just like you and me, are downtrodden, oppressed, and worthless in the eyes of their society.

A woman in South Asia faces a life cycle of suffering. A burden of oppression threatens her very existence, following her from birth — and even before birth — to her death.

But despair isn’t the end of the story for the women of Asia. In the midst of these hopeless situations, there is glorious hope!

Netramini-widow

 

A Widow’s Story

The story of Netramini shows the plight of more than 40 million widows in South Asia. After her husband died, Netramini didn’t receive the love and support that are common for widows here in North America. Instead, she was seen as a “bad omen”, rejected, and kicked out of her son’s house. With nowhere else to go, she began working, but Netramini’s health got worse to the point where she could no longer work. Her only option left for survival? Begging.

“I was completely alone. … No one would give me work so I had to beg. … I had nothing to eat, nothing to wear. I was completely senseless and didn’t know anything. . .” Netramini said.

She was forsaken, abandoned, and had no one to care for her. Netramini continued to get sicker, and for two days she lay abandoned in her house. Perhaps Netramini would have died there, but several woman missionaries, specially trained to reach out to the hurting and downtrodden, brought help and hope to this precious woman. Now Netramini has a home. She has people who love and care for her, and she knows that she is valued in the sight of Jesus.

Watch a short clip from “Veil of Tears: Hope Is on the Way” that shares Netramini’s story.

Gospel for Asia’s heart is share the love of Jesus with the most unreached in South Asia. One facet of our ministry is reaching out to the women of Asia with the rescue and hope of Christ! Gospel for Asia is impacting the lives of these beautiful women by teaching them how to provide for themselves with sewing machines, placing their children in schools, and sharing with them that Jesus loves and cherishes them.

The documentary film “Veil of Tears: Hope Is on the Way”, narrated by Natalie Grant and released in March 2014, reveals the plight of women in Asia and the hope that is on the way for them. Filmed on location in India in some of the most remote tribal villages in the world today, “Veil of Tears” takes you on a journey where few outsiders have gone before. The women of Asia tell their incredibly real stories of tragedy and hope, like the widow Netramini, young Maloti, and many others. Be inspired by the light of Christ shining through and changing lives.

Let’s learn, pray, give — and Be Her Advocate.

http://veiloftearsmovie.com

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Christin

Christin has a heart to encourage and equip women in aspects of discipleship, marriage, mothering, writing, blogging, and community. She sees the body of Christ as an important community of encouragement and discipleship and works to foster that around the web. She has been married 13 years and has 7 children ranging in age from 11 down to 3. You can find her encouraging moms at her blog Joyful Mothering, writing some deeper thoughts on life and writing at ChristinSlade.com, and learning more about Google+.

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Noonday Collection {Giveaway!}

A big, hearty welcome to Noonday Collection!

Noonday Collection is so excited to be sponsoring the Allume Conference again this year! This inspiring gathering of women so clearly highlights the values and dreams that are in Noonday’s DNA as a company. We love what happens when women come together in the spirit of uplifting and encouraging one another. At Noonday, we use fashion and design to bring economic opportunity to the vulnerable, and are passionate about bringing women together through our deeply interconnected network of Ambassadors, customers, and artisans around the world.

Sofiya

Artisan empowerment is at the heart of what we do, and we are honored to share in the stories of so many talented individuals in countries spanning from Rwanda to Guatemala. We especially have a heart for the female artisans around the world who are experiencing economic empowerment and freedom, many for the first time in their lives, because of sustainable jobs. In India, it is often considered inappropriate for women to work outside the home, but one of our artisans, Sofiya, dreamed of a life of independence and opportunity. She jumped at the chance to become a jewelry-maker, and became the primary supporter for her family after her father passed away. Through the artisan group, she has learned about her rights as an Indian woman and has even purchased her own motorbike—a rare symbol on independence in India.

Tigiest

Another of Noonday’s missions is to provide the tools women need to keep their families together. In Ethiopia, people diagnosed with HIV are often stigmatized because of the disease and forced to leave their communities, despite the fact that HIV is now as treatable as Type 2 Diabetes and cannot be transmitted by casual contact. When Tigiest found out she was HIV positive, she was forced out of her home and traveled to Mount Entoto to seek the healing waters that are believed to flow there. She was forced to leave two of her five children behind because she could not afford to care for all of them, a tragedy that left her desperate to reunite her family. On the mountain, she found a new community and a new hope. She began working as a jewelry-maker for Noonday’s partner group and with her earnings were enough to allow her to bring her other two children to live with her. She now provides a home, food, and an education for all five of her children, who are her pride and joy.

Ambassador Group Photo

We love that we get to connect women across continents, whether they live in Jaipur or Cleveland. Our network of 650 Ambassadors (and growing!) serve as the voice and face of Noonday in their communities. This powerful group of women are advocates, storytellers, and stylists and they create marketplace for our artisans at trunk shows across the country. For these unstoppable women, the community they have found in one another is a testament to what can happen when women fix their eyes on the same horizon. They come from all over the country and from all different backgrounds—they are homemakers, nurses, and computer programmers. Their lives may look different, but they all have one thing in common: a passion for seeing justice done for the poor. And that one thing is enough to unite them into a team of women willing to break out of their comfort zones, be vulnerable enough to ask for help, and celebrate each others’ successes.

Ambassadors

We are thrilled to be a part of the Allume Conference and to see firsthand the power of women gathering for the express purpose of growing, changing, and inspiring others. Our work across the globe has showed us that women everywhere have the potential to create big changes in their communities. And when women gather together, their combined influence has the power to change the whole world.

Giveaway

We want to give away $100 of Noonday Goodies to one lovely winner. Come on over and follow us on Instagram and then leave a comment below. Be sure to leave your email address so we can contact you if you win.

Giveaway ends Friday at 11:59 EST.

Christin

Christin has a heart to encourage and equip women in aspects of discipleship, marriage, mothering, writing, blogging, and community. She sees the body of Christ as an important community of encouragement and discipleship and works to foster that around the web. She has been married 13 years and has 7 children ranging in age from 11 down to 3. You can find her encouraging moms at her blog Joyful Mothering, writing some deeper thoughts on life and writing at ChristinSlade.com, and learning more about Google+.

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