The other day I woke up thinking about Abraham (the image of the boy featured on this post). He's 8 years old.
I met him earlier this year when I went to Nicaragua with a small group of people.
He ran over to greet me with a smile and ask for my photo.
I said "sure, but I must have you're photo as well so I don't forget you!". He shook his head with a smile and said, "yes!" (We communicated all this in Spanish)
He lives in a small village called Santa Pancha, Nicaragua.
Imagine living in a decrepit, unsafe hovel made from waste material on top of old mining tunnels that could explode and sink any moment. Just let that sink in for a bit.
That was the situation Abraham and his family was in.
This place is of the poorest of the poor.
And it was quite the site when I came to visit last year (May 2015). I first heard of the situation in Santa Pancha, Nicaragua January of 2015.
By the time I got to Nicaragua in May 2015, I had been raising money to help build homes for these families through AgapeProject25.com.
By then I had only been able to raise about $12,000 to help the people of Santa Pancha.
And then after I came back from that trip I knew I had to do more.
Let me go further back....
Before 2014 ended, I sat down with a pen and paper and I wrote a few goals down. I knew I wanted to be stretched in some way. I had felt like I was in a bit of a rut. So I started embarking on this journey of helping the extreme poor by donating the money I would make through my music to the poor. This stretched me because I had just gotten out of a music 'hiatus' and was itching to get back into the studio and record another record. I knew I had to build a literal house for the poor. I just didn't know where or how.
So when I heard about what was happening in Santa Pancha and what Kings Ransom Foundation and Food For The Poor was doing down there, I knew I had to partner with them, and I knew I wanted to gather some of my musician friends to help. So we set a pretty huge goal of raising $100,000. For me that goal was beyond mind-blowing and scary.
But here we were.
Willing to give so much for a people that we did not know.
Willing to work, and invest time and money even, towards giving these people a better future.
And to my surprise these people had way more FAITH, way more HOPE, way more LIFE, in the face of poverty.
I had it in my mind that these people were in desperate need of faith and hope.
Come to find out it was me that was needing FAITH and HOPE. Oh the conundrum!
To find out that its YOU that has the problem...
To find out that its YOU that needs rescuing...
YOU that lacks faith and hope...
The 'extreme poor' gave me something. And I didn't realize it until I went back there in January 2016.
They gave me more than I could ever give them.
With AgapeProject25 we have been able to raise over $73,000.
I don't plan on stopping.
My hope is that you join me in this mission.
Its a special one.
Cause not only are you in a huge way helping these families that are in need but there is something that you receive when you give. I never in a million years would have thought that I would look into the face of poverty and do the things that I've been able to do over the last year.
I think Mother Teresa said it best and I've had this quote in front of me throughout this journey....
"Intense love does not measure, it just gives!"
So for me, I knew I couldn't exactly write a $100,000 check...yet anyways. The trick there is to not let that stop you!
I knew I could rally others to give and together we could do some pretty remarkable things!
We could save a village!
We could heal a nation!
And that is the goal... to heal Nicaragua and bring a future to families in need.
Educate them with skill sets to help sustain them for the long haul.
Its not just about building homes and rescuing them from their situation.
I believe there's a lot more to it than that. Not only are you changing their lives, but they are changing yours too, if you let them.
AgapeProject25 has set up a page to direct the funds to this particular project. You can find it by clicking here!
I challenge you to go to KingsRansom.org and go ahead and create your own campaign for Nicaragua. It doesn't matter where the money goes, what matter is that we do something.
No gift is too small!