Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Being Nuru: A Visit To "The Well" at Ashland University

It was about this time last September that I received the call. Zach Hefner, a student at Ashland University called me to see about how his campus, and more specifically, his church could get involved with Nuru. He told me about how active students were on his campus, and how he had been following Nuru’s work more or less since we started in 2008. He was interested in seeing his campus have the ability to drill a well, or buy some goats, or something of the sort.

I let him know that Nuru doesn’t do any of those things. We don’t drill wells (although we have in the past), and we don’t do anything that could resemble a handout. I also let him know that I was incredibly excited to talk to him, and I was even more excited about the fact that he and his friends had decided to take action toward ending global extreme poverty. I could guarantee to Zach that whatever funds he was able to raise on campus, Nuru would do its best to leverage them for the greatest impact in ending extreme poverty for the people of Kuria West, Kenya.

So many people have the greatest of intentions, but they stop short of taking action, and what the world needs is people who take action, folks who choose to make a difference with their limited time and resources on this earth. Zach is one of those types of people, and thankfully there are more people like him.  I am filled with joy that every day, I have the opportunity to meet and interact with passionate difference makers like Zach.

After my own life was awakened to the issue of global extreme poverty in an English class in 2005, my life has been on a different trajectory. I believe that global extreme poverty is the greatest humanitarian crisis of our generation, and I believe further that future generations of humanity will judge us based on what we did or did not do to bring an end to global extreme poverty. As a result, I am passionate about seeing others get involved, and taking action, people like Zach.

A few months after my initial call with Zach, I made my way to Ashland University, and met one of Zach’s campus leaders, a guy named NateBebout. Nate and I were able to have lunch together, and we talked at length about seeing people get connected with issues and even discovering their own callings as a result. Nate is a solid leader, and honestly, he is a true gift to the students at Ashland.

At Ashland Uniersity, students had raised over $2000 for Nuru through giving a little bit each week. As I shared with members of their campus ministry in April, I couldn’t help but think about the future. You see, the students here had taken a big step from good intentions to action, and had started down a path of being engaged in ending global extreme poverty together with Nuru.

I’m excited for the future because of leaders like Nate who will be able to work with even more students in the future, and provide them opportunities to care and take action to end extreme poverty in our lifetime.

If you are reading this blog, maybe it can be an encouragement to you to take action as well. When Zach started talking about Nuru on his campus, he was the only person there who knew about Nuru. Maybe you can lead the charge in your workplace, on your campus, or in your faith community to be Nuru, and invite others to join us in this work.

May today be a day for you to be Nuru, and to move good intentions into conversation and action toward making a difference in this world.

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