Tears of Gratefulness

So I'm going to be honest with you... 
I worry about money... 
not in the typical sense of worrying "how we will pay monthly bills 
or where my next meal is coming from" sort of way,
but rather quite the opposite... 
I sometimes worry because I've NEVER had to worry where my next meal is coming from 
and I worry I'm not doing enough for others who do.

Don't get me wrong, I didn't grow up "wealthy" by North American standards, but we always had enough... my dad worked hard for the same company for 35+ years and mom was a stay-at-home mom who always did odd jobs to help contribute (and made me wear dresses she sewed for me and patched holes in my jeans with flowers on the knees so I could keep wearing them... granted it was the 70s so maybe I DID look hip!!!). And my brother Darren and I along with our cousins would go bottle collecting each summer to make extra money for ourselves!!


But since the tender age of 7, I've been very conscious of the fact that there are many in this world with less... I  remember very clearly walking around Tijuana Mexico with my family that year seeing some pretty sad things and children in need and it has stayed with me for life.  I even did this layout after my first Home Building Trip to Mexico in 2011 when I had a Full Circle Moment standing again at the border of Tijuana... I realized I had finally DONE SOMETHING to help what I had seen back at age 7...


So my personal worry about money comes from the sense that I worry that I'm not giving enough to others who DO wonder where their next meal is coming from... and so it has become a HUGE passion to be a good steward of what God has blessed me with to in turn bless others... and although I do give regular contributions to some really great organizations and causes throughout the year, I have to admit that my brain and heart is ALWAYS strategizing how to "multiply" it for greatest impact... it's just how God has created me to think...
and it's how Crop For Mexico came to be :)

I had scrapbooking supplies that I knew had value, I'm an event planner and love to host as well and decided that would be a great way to "multiply" the value of what I had to offer!!!  This year was our 3rd event and each year it just blows me away even more!!!  I totally realize not everyone can actually go to Mexico to help build, but I KNOW that there are really good people who still care and so I like to give opportunities for others to partner with me... and I KNOW scrapbookers like to craft and GIVE so it is the perfect partnership!!!!!

Last year I took a group shot of all the ladies at the crop, printed it out and brought it with me to give to the family in Mexico that we built for... here you can see the single mom, her two young boys and her oldest Reynaldo who is proudly holding the photo... he wanted it in EVERY picture!!  He couldn't understand why these ladies back in Canada who didn't even know him cared... but he was thankful!!!!!!


And this year I took another photo of our wonderful group of crafty ladies who came out to show support for what we are doing... and although we have not yet been introduced to to the 3 families we are building for this summer, I am anxious to again take this photo to show them and tell them how these ladies back in Canada cared sooooooo much and gave sooooo generously!!!!


And now for the moment you've all been waiting for... 
the TOTAL $ raised through the 2013 Crop For Mexico...

$11,492.25

My personal faith goal was $12,000 and we were so close and I have to admit that although I was ecstatic with this amount and so very grateful to ALL who gave so generously, a small part of my heart was disappointed as I knew we needed at least $18,000 to cover just the building materials for all 3 homes plus about $1500 per home to furnish and buy food, etc.

But then God pulled a miracle 
(He is in the business of miracles just in case you didn't already know!!)
and I'm pretty darn sure it was all for me...
to teach me a lesson about faith and trust and relying on HIM, not on ME
and I received a wonderful email the next day declaring...
somehow our group of 34 kids, teens and adults together through the Crop For Mexico, Coco Brooks Pizza sales and a few other means managed to raise a total of

$22,229

which means we even have the money to furnish and buy food for ALL 3 FAMILIES!!!!  And in fact, if you do the math, it's almost exactly what we need to do this!!

And so I cry... again...
I just love how God continues to teach me...
that HE is bigger than any problems or worries...
He takes every little bit offered to Him and multiplies it...
and that He loves me and He loves you and He loves those families...
and He loves those who notice the hurts of others and blesses those who step out in faith to do something to help.

So may each of you who noticed and contributed be blessed beyond what you can even ask or imagine
and may you too know and feel and understand God's love just a little better!!!

With Tears of Gratefulness and THANK YOU from my heart,
Allison

3 comments:

Lee Kendel said...

Allison,
I admire your drive and how intensly you devote yourself to the world. You do make it a better place and set a wonderful example.
Thank you.
Lee

Dawn Hueser said...

Thank you for being who you are which does allow others to feel good about helping too. You truly are a blessing in my world.

Anonymous said...

Im sitting here at work reading your blog on my coffee break, and I'm bawling my eyes out. God is so good, and so faithful. His mercies are new every morning.
Great job Allison, and the GBC family.
May all your efforts bless those in Mexico, and reach far beyond your wildest dreams.

Amy Mahé