Saturday, October 1, 2011

Walking Again

Leslie/Todd: Our Walk for Economic Empowerment is our largest annual fundraising event to empower the materially poor. This year we have four plus venues - Charleston, Columbus, Boston, and Chicago. The "plus" - right where you are! This option allows folks to walk when and where is most convenient for them with online fundraising support from us and even a Walk T-Shirt! Given the October 1 Chicago Walk, we had more walkers this year than any previous year. We're not yet breaking funds raised records (the 2009 Walk raised $90,000 for all organizations and the 2008 Walk raised $55,000 for PEER Servants). Our prolonged bad economy with its current bleak outlook is filtering down to limiting what funds can be raised to empower the materially poor.

The Walk accomplishes far more than just raising funds to empower the materially poor. It is our annual reminder to walk in the footsteps of Jesus and His great concern for the materially poor. We cannot escape the fact that His concern for them far exceeds ours, nor can we escape the fact that He, time and time again, encourages us to live in a way that we will be dependent on Him so that, even when rich (which is what the vast majority of us in North America are by the world's and Jesus' standards), we will be very generous to the materially poor. We set high goals for what we hope to raise through the Walk and we don't always reach them. The real lesson we learn in those times is our God takes great joy in taking what we can give or raise and multiplying it many times over so that at the end of the day we and others are not impressed with what we have done, but with what He has done. And He has done far more than we can think or imagine to provide for the materially poor.

So, it's been a very blessed Walk season. Not just in the number of walkers we have seen, but in how we have caught a wider angle on what God is doing in us, through us, and often despite us to preach good news to the poor and release the oppressed.