Archives for category: hope

The Idea Camp tribe has been so life-giving to me over the last couple of years.  This amazing group of compassionaries has inspired, challenged, and partnered with me in ways that have changed me and compelled me towards concrete action for good — to demonstrate the reality that God has not given up on the world by becoming better expressions of God’s love for the world.

I loved being a part of #Ideation11, even if it was only for a day. While the Ideation Conference is not strictly faith-based, this gathering of amazing idea-makers, creatives, and doers from both the nonprofit and business worlds moves powerfully together for good. A huge thanks to Charles Lee and the team for bringing together such an incredible gathering.

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Our trip to Delmas, South Africa was a beautiful whirlwind.  There is nothing like joining in the redemptive work of God in the world, whether close to home or far away.

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The Idea Camp, which has just launched a new site today!

On September 27-28, 2010, The Idea Camp will be hosting an important conversation about sex, the church, the world, and ideas for good.

I’ll be the first to admit, I’m uncomfortable talking about this topic. However, it is simply too important for us, as the church, to look the other way.

I love the heart behind #ICSEX (the Twitter hashtag for this Idea Camp):

The issues related to human sexuality are too often misunderstood, ignored, or avoided in far too many churches. The Idea Camp will facilitate a safe and transparent environment of learning, sharing of insights from the respective fields of focus, and practical insights and examples of holistic care. As a faith-based conference, there will be an on-going focus on the importance of living as God’s loving expressions of grace and hope to the world through tangible acts of care in this area.

During the weeks leading up to #ICSEX, different bloggers will be hosting conversations around a topic each week.  The first week has already wrapped up, and there have been many honest, challenging reflections already.  Upcoming topics will include sexual abuse, gender, and slavery.  I’m looking forward to hosting one of these discussions here at headsparks* in September.

Being part of The Idea Camp tribe has been so life-giving to me: nowhere else have I found the friendship, collaboration, and inspiration I have found from this diverse group of like-minded people.  This time, what happens in Vegas could transform the church and change the world!

July 12, 2010 marked the six-month anniversary of the devastating earthquake in Haiti that killed over 200,000 people, leveled countless buildings, and caused billions of dollars worth of damage.

In March, I wrote a review about Tending to Eden: Environmental Stewardship for God’s People by Scott Sabin, executive director of Plant With Purpose. PWP is a nonprofit working to alleviate poverty by addressing deforestation. From their website:

By reversing deforestation, Plant With Purpose helps the poor restore productivity to their land to create economic opportunity out of environmental restoration. Since 1984 we have helped more than 100,000 people in some 230 villages lift themselves out of poverty through our holistic approach to sustainable development.

PWP has worked in Haiti for thirteen years, and continues to help in the rebuilding process after the devastating earthquake.  From The New York Times:

(PWP) has so far hired some 2,200 workers to plant more than 170,000 trees to protect communities. The extra available labor has allowed him to scale up Plant With Purpose’s operations, constructing more than 260 miles of soil erosion barriers to protect farmland from hurricanes and tropical storms.

There is still much work to be done.  Visit the Plant With Purpose Haiti Relief page to contribute towards rebuilding hope for Haiti.

On the way to gather with our church this morning, I heard a great story on the radio about WE CARE Solar (Women’s Emergency Communication And Reliable Electricity). Their motto is, “Saving mothers’ lives with solar-powered light and communication.”

WE CARE was founded by Dr. Laura Stachel, an obstetrician, and her husband Hal Aronson, a solar power engineer.  Maternal mortality accounts for half a million deaths worldwide each year, of which 99% occurs in underdeveloped countries.  Proper medical/surgical care is greatly impeded by a lack of reliable electricity to power lighting, equipment and communications.

Dr. Stachel and her husband developed a “solar suitcase” that can provide much-needed electrical power to fulfill their mission, which is to promote “safe motherhood and reduce maternal mortality in developing regions by providing health workers with reliable lighting, mobile communication, and blood bank refrigeration using solar electricity.”

The “solar suitcase” powers two overhead LED lighting, charges walkie-talkies and cell phones, and includes LED headlamps that come with their own rechargeable batteries. The first deployment of these systems occurred in June 2009. Now these systems have been introduced in nine countries. Most recently, we were asked to send solar suitcases to Haiti, where they are being used by medical relief teams and maternity clinics.

A donation to WE CARE could make a fantastic Mother’s Day gift this year!