One of the foundational values of YWAM is “Practice Dependance on God for Finances.” To a large degree it can still be summed up as “generosity.” (Once, a team of us had an assignment to create a song explaining the foundational values, and one of the memorable lines, including 2 values, was “hospitality, here’s my coat, generousity, take my goat” – but I digress.)
Sometimes, I think it would be much simpler to work with an organization that raised support for us and paid us a regular wage. However, I think the generosity that is fostered in this environment as people chose to give to each other is so beautiful. One member of a team passing through left a book for one of our students that has deeply impacted her. A DTS in Switzerland was praying for our school and decided to send us a package – and one particular student wanted to send money to one of our students. (These people have never even met!) Someone anonymously left me a pair of beaded sandals. (I had been looking for a pair that was not-so-gaudy, and big enough: these are perfect.)
Some of our students have been unable to pay all of their school fees or don’t have the money to pay for the visas we need for outreach. This morning we had a time of sharing needs and of prayerfully giving. There was about $2000 in total needed. (Its not a lot, but in a room full of people who have very little, its a huge amount.) In less than an hour, that amount was cut in half! It amazes me, humbles me, and continually reassures me that this is a community that I want to be a part of.
Post Script: I finished writing this, reviewing it with Mike, and was walking out the door for supper, when someone stopped me because they had a gift: a new dress. Crazy and amazing.