Tonight was overwhelming. Not to say that this past week has been anything but. Today was payday for me and for the past ten days I had $25 dollars for gas and $7 dollars for groceries. It’s a pretty scary state to be in knowing that I’m jumping into an organization where (for the time) I have no real income. I keep reading and re-reading Matthew 6:25-26, 33 - - 25Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 33But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.
It has been an emotional battle all week with a rollercoaster of ups and downs. Two parking tickets in one week when I can’t even afford to eat, cutting back my hours at work because I can’t afford the gas to get me there, and knowing that no matter how good I am at budgeting and managing my money, nothing will change the fact that my living expenses are more than my income. So I read those verses again, go to church and surround myself with my community, and pray. I think about Holly putting in so much time for COTN and watching her savings dwindle. I think about these children who desperately need this to work even more than we do. I continue to say under my breath, “God will provide” and believe it.
And he does.
For the past few weeks at Flood the sermon has been about leadership. Mainly servant leadership. It’s almost as though they were written specifically for the COTN group. Everything I heard I related to and I made sure to text Holly (who was vacationing in Ohio) to let her know that she NEEDED to listen to the podcasts. This comes after being bombarded with “purpose” messages. The only way God could be clearer is if he personally slapped me in the face!
In God’s perfect timing, he turned everything around and I watched as the puzzle pieces fell into place. I got my first private client, my friend provided me with the financial support to take advantage of a new business opportunity, some friends took me out to dinner for my birthday, and my paycheck was larger than anticipated. Within a matter of days I was back on my feet and for the first time I am able to tithe. All I can do is thank God and reiterate, “GOD PROVIDES!”
I am still certain that I want to come onboard as a staff member even though looking at the numbers on paper makes me want to crawl out of my skin. I guess no one really looks at what it takes to make things happen behind the scenes of charity organizations. It has definitely given me a new respect for them. The man-hours alone to attempt what we are trying to do are sure to be significantly over 40 hours a week and to be able to support someone who is working that, funds have to be raised. It never occurred to me that we would have to raise our own salary. And we will certainly need it if we are quitting our current jobs to devote ourselves full time to this effort.
The trouble is getting other people to understand it. So many people are willing to give money if they know it is going to the children, but have a harder time donating to the “organization of” getting the help to the children. We have our work cut out for us. I can not deny how exciting it is though. To know that we are doing something new. To know that we are building this from the ground up. To know that in a short time, we will be seeing the generosity of San Diego in effect in these other countries and on the faces of these children. Terrifying… but also exciting.
Tonight at the COTN meeting we were presented with our action assignments. (As I like to call it.) Holly has been hard at work putting all of our ideas from the last meeting together into some kind of timeline as well as assigning teams to make these ideas a reality. Did I mention that I’m feeling a little overwhelmed? The timeline is quite an ambitious one. I am in charge of a 5k/10k race. However, I’ve only got 2 months at the most to make it happen. WHAT?!?! If I thought making the commitment to join COTN was a challenge, this is all-out warfare! I do have to admit that this is the type of challenge that thrills me though. In my stomach I am sick with worry, but in my head I’m making lists and agendas and deadlines and thinking, “If we’ve decided to do this, then let’s get it done. Bring it on!”
This first year is a make-it or break-it year and we have a lot on our plates. I wonder where we will be in a few months. Will COTN still be unknown, or will we have planted the seed of awareness? Will we burn ourselves out, or will we rise to the occasion? Will we achieve our goals or will we flounder?
I think these two verses and this quote will be held near to my heart throughout this whole process:
I can do all things through Him who strengthens me. – Philippians 4:13
With God all things are possible. – Matthew 19:26
The probability that we may fail in the struggle ought not to deter us from the support of a cause we believe to be just. – Abraham Lincoln