#GivingTuesday: “Whatever is honorable”

#GivingTuesday: “Whatever is honorable”

“Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” – Philippians 4:8

Today is #givingtuesday in the U.S. After a bustle of purchases and shops, it is a day to do as the early Christians were called to do and reflect on the good, praiseworthy, pleasing, and commendable things going on around us. It’s also a call to support those true works of justice in the world. (Click on the picture to zoom in.)

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Thank you for being part of this good work!

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Spirit in Action Gratitude List

Spirit in Action Gratitude List

1. For each of our Small Business Fund Coordinators, who volunteer their time to implement the program in their community and help families start small businesses.

2. For prayer partners around the world who remember Spirit in Action, the USA, and me in their prayers.

3. For Del’s wisdom and vision for helping each person reach their God-given potential.

4. For volunteers who help with technology stuff.

5. For WhatsApp, which facilitates easy, quick communication, no matter where we are in the world!

6. For cameras on cell phones; for photos of small businesses owners in front of their shops.

Women cooking together in Malawi. They are taking part of a Nutrition and Health workshop.

Women cooking together in Malawi. They are taking part of a Nutrition and Health workshop.

7. For grant partners who know their local context and can navigate challenges with their cultural knowledge and expertise.

8. For my sister who checks the SIA post office box regularly.

9. For a focus on relationships, in addition to 5-year plans.

10. For women who welcome orphans into their home, providing and caring for them.

11. For enthusiastic SIA Board members who are willing to learn and be engaged to make us a better organization.

12. For “God Calling…” written by Del and read at the beginning of each SIA Board meeting.

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13. For all the wonderful, generous people who donate to SIA! Including 14 people who donate to SIA monthly.

14. For the churches who include SIA in their mission/international outreach.

15. For community leaders who have plans for improving economic opportunity and increasing justice.

16. For Marsha and Dennis Johnson who have dedicated 20+ years to Spirit in Action in more ways than I can list here.

17. For this blog, which allows me to connect with our SIA network and highlight the amazing change taking place.

Even though it's blurry, I love the camaraderie and joy that is evident in this scene. A moment of downtime in the midst of visiting Small Business Fund groups in Uganda in 2014.

Even though it’s blurry, I love the camaraderie and joy that is evident in this scene. A moment of downtime in the midst of visiting Small Business Fund groups in Uganda in 2014.

18. For trips to eastern Africa; for being able to shake the hands of grant partners and congratulate them on work well-done.

19. For Small Business Fund Coordinators who encourage and train each other.

20. For flexibility in our grant-giving, so that we can respond to local needs, priorities, and contexts.

Encouraging Updates

Encouraging Updates

A family business in Eldoret, Kenya

Purity and her son, Cyril, started a milk and doughnut business (a winning combination!) with a SIA Small Business Grant in 2015. This week, local coordinator Dennis Kiprop went to visit them and was pleased to see that Cyril had already sold out by 10am. Cyril shares his excitement, “I am grateful for SIA for coming to us in time, we have been so encouraged in our family and we have expanded the business.”

Cyril with milk jugs attached to the back of his motorbike. He works with his mother to support the family.

Cyril with milk jugs attached to the back of his motorbike. He works with his mother to support the family.

Supporting Business Expansion

The SIA Board met over the weekend. We took time to pray for each of our dedicated partners throughout Africa. We rededicated ourselves to continue our work of empowerment and encouragement. One of the newly approved grant projects is a jewelry shop. The Namaiyana Women’s Self-Help Group is in Archer’s Post, Samburu County, Kenya. The 25 members make beautiful, handmade beaded jewelry and accessories, wooden artifacts, and suvenirs for tourists on safari.

Board Member Kathleen King was pleased to support this application. “This is exactly the kind of project that we like to support. The women have already learned the skill and Spirit in Action funds can help them get to the next step to support themselves and their families.”

Young artisan showing off the beautiful beaded jewelry.

Young artisan showing off the beautiful beaded jewelry.

Receiving Prayers of Peace

“We are praying for you in the wake of your elections,” is a phrase I have written many times in my nine years with Spirit in Action. Elections in Uganda, Kenya, Nigeria have called me to prayer. This week, I am on the receiving end of these messages. One of our partners in Kenya wrote, “I am also praying for you for peace, understanding, and respect in the wake of your new president.

I remember that when in Kenya, everyone I met was so proud of President Obama, a man with Kenyan heritage. Many Kenyans remarked how impressed they were that the United States had elected someone who was so different. May we receive these prayers and be grateful for our amazing global SIA community.

“Every moment is an organizing opportunity, every person a potential activist, every minute a chance to change the world.”
~ Dolores Huerta

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