Tag Archives: creativity

“No room in the Inn” takes on another meaning

This has been a heart breaking week so far for The Sparrow’s Nest.

I’ve had numerous calls from young girls who were pregnant or parenting sweet little babies and had no place to go. I had another call from a caseworker still looking for a safe place for his 16 year old client and her 4 month old baby. I looked into the eye of a mother of 13 year old girl who has struggled for months with so many self destructive behaviors. The family just needed a moment of peace.

However, the stark reality is the 3-4 teen shelters in the entire St. Louis metro are full. They’ve started waiting lists again. “No room in the Inn” has taken on another meaning during this holiday season. We’ve started referring girls out of the area. Some are willing to leave what they know. Others can’t imagine being away from their familiar surroundings during this hard time in their lives. Things look pretty bleak.

But, you are hope. And you can make space for even more hope.

Your prayers can help bring light to these dark places.

Your creativity can bring answers to these problems.

Your generosity can help Build The Nest

for a safe and secure place for these innocent babies and their young mothers.

We need champions who will give sacrificially for such a time as this. Please donate whatever you can, $1, $10, $20, $100.

Let’s make space for hope together.

infant

http://www.thesparrowsneststl.org

Advertisements

You’ve got a freakin’ gold mine!

The average household has $90 in change laying around

We hear a lot of people telling us that they really can’t afford to donate much to The Sparrow’s Nest right now. Times are tough. And believe me. We get that! It’s kinda the reason we’re coming into existence. However, Coinstar® reminds us that there is forgotten money hiding in our homes.  The average American household has a coin stash of  about $90 just waiting to be put to good use. Like helping the fund a home for teens and their precious little babies.

So if you thought you couldn’t give anything, or first thought at most you could only give $25 or so start looking around your house.

To mine for money in your house, follow these steps from the Live on Cash Blog:

  1. Prospect in the most obvious spots first:  pants pockets, handbags, backpacks, coat pockets, etc.
  2. Look for “piggy” and other types of coin banks.  Half of American families keep change in a coin bank of some type.
  3. Check behind chests-of-drawers and cabinets, under beds, refrigerators, dressers, and nightstands, any place where coins might end up after falling on the floor.  28% of the time you will find coins in random locations such as these.
  4. Search out cups, mugs, jars, and other containers.  71% of Americans keep their coins in receptacles of some type.
  5. Explore beneath the cushions and in the cracks of upholstered furniture.  There is a 1 in 5 chance you will find coins there.
  6. Hunt through your washer and dryer.  36% of coins have been “laundered”.
  7. Rummage through drawers.  A third of American families keep coins in drawers.
  8. Comb through your car, especially the glove compartment, under the seats, the cracks within and between seats, and under floor mats.

You don’t even need to count it. Put your stash in a coffee can, a ziploc bag, or chinese food container. We’ll take it to the bank and then issue you a tax-ductible receipt.

And you thought you couldn’t afford to donate to The Sparrow’s Nest this year.:)

After you go on your coin scavenger hunt, let us know the most unusual place you found money. What was the highest amount you found?

Happy Mining!

Part 3 God whispered Nehemiah: And you thought I forgot what I was doing

Nests are typical examples of extended phenotypes.

Image via Wikipedia

And you thought

I

forgot what I was doing…

A couple of weeks ago I started this series on Nehemiah and how the re-building of the wall relates to the Building of The Nest for The Sparrow’s Nest. I bet you thought I wasn’t devoted to finishing this series. But…

In Chapter 4 of Nehemiah we read Nehemiah and the people were facing great opposition to the rebuilding of the wall. But despite the frustration and distractions verse 6 tells us they “rebuilt the wall till all of it reached half its height, for the people worked with all their heart.”

We’re getting into that time of year when we’re distracted by really good wholesome things, not at all like the evil Nehemiah faced. But Fall is starting, college football is in full swing, kids soccer is every weekend, and all those holidays are coming. With all that being said, we have fabulous momentum going. This is the time, just like Nehemiah, to put our noses to the grindstone and get the Nest built. This is the time to constantly be putting the word out, to be creative in our planning and implementation, and to give sacrificially to this ministry.

So, you may have thought I had forgotten about writing this series. But I’ll reply rather snarkily in a biblical manner:

I am carrying on a great project and cannot go down.

Why should the work stop…” Nehemiah 6:3

This is the time to fully devote ourselves. Just as Nehemiah and the wall builders devoted themselves to building a legacy that would last generations, we need to devote ourselves to this work. Just as Nehemiah and the wall builders devoted themselves to hard work despite financial and provisional struggles, we need to devote ourselves to finding every resource available to Build The Nest

And just like Nehemiah and the wall builders stated as recorded in Nehemiah 5:16 “Instead, I devoted myself to the work on this wall.” We need to state:

We devote ourselves to the work of building the nest for The Sparrow’s Nest.

Can we count on you? Are you devoted?

 

MOVE!

IMG_9344

Image by bkeepers via Flickr

I want you to get out your calendar. Because 364 days from today you will be sitting on the lawn of The Sparrow’s Nest Maternity Home no doubt sweating, drinking lemonade, eating ice cream sundaes, and listening to incredible live music as we celebrate the opening of The Sparrow’s Nest.

Can you just see it? Can you feel the excitement of that day? Can you imagine the faces of our neighbors? Can you see the face of the first girl walking through our doors?

But I can’t tell you the location yet. I can’t tell you the time. But I don’t want you to just hang. I need you to MOVE.

We have so much to accomplish in the next 12 month and we need all the help we can get. And I have to admit my fragility as an Executive Director. I cannot physically do this without you. I can’t be everywhere meeting with everyone that needs to be met. I can’t fill out every single piece of paper and file every license we need to get going. If this all falls on me we’ll miss the opportunity. We won’t be able to help as fast.

I need you to feel the urgency for efficiency and productivity. I need you to have the desire to build a quality organization based on biblical foundations. I need you to get fired up and answer the question “What Needs to Be Done?”

This isn’t sitting on the sidelines cheering us on. This is getting in, learning a lot. getting your hands dirty, leaping in and getting this thing done. This isn’t the time to worry about your age, or your money, or any other excuse. This is not waiting on me but it’s you rallying your community. It’s you getting the word out to your small group, your neighbors, your friends, your family and saying “this is what is going on, I think you might be the right person to help or to spear head this action.”

But this also isn’t the time to sit back and say this isn’t my gift or talent. Maybe this is the time when you answer that question that has been nagging your heart, “I want to do more, I’m just not sure what it is…” Maybe this is the time not to fall on your natural abilities but it’s time to take a leap of faith with us and say “Lord,  I don’t know what you’re doing to me but I trust you. Use me however you see fit even if it’s something I’ve never done before.”

Grow with us. Make an impact with us. There will be time next year to sit back and enjoy that glass of lemonade. Now it the time to MOVE.

Call me at 636-336-2534 or email carissa@thesparrowsneststl.org to volunteer. Let’s talk about what you can do.

Wow Me Wednesdays-Beginnings

Pine cone with nuts

Image via Wikipedia

I mixed things up this morning on my workout. I got my lazy self out of bed at 5:30 a.m and went for my run outside instead of the treadmill or a death run at night when I can’t see anything. It of course was a beautiful clear morning with a slight fog still hovering over the fields near my house. I wasn’t 5 minutes from my house when I stopped to tie my shoe and looked up at a row of pine trees next to me. It looked like the trees were hiding hundreds of cocoons. Then I realized there were way too many to be moths or butterflies. Instead what I was seeing was the beginning of a pine cone. Amazing! I had never seen a pine cone in it’s beginning stages. It didn’t look anything like the end product. But it was beautiful in its very raw, very organic beginnings.

That’s one of the things that attracts our wonderful volunteers and supporters to The Sparrow’s Nest. Like that pine cone, we don’t look anything like we will look in a year from now. We are very raw. We are at the very beginning of something beautiful.  I think people feel refreshed and invigorated to be a part of something so organic.

I want to thank those of you who have already donated to this very fledgling organization. You’ve chosen to invest in something that hasn’t even had a chance to prove itself worthy yet. If you haven’t had a chance to donate I encourage to step out and be a part of something new, exciting, and wonderful.

For WoW  Me Wednesday, I’d love to hear about things you’ve seen or been apart of from the very beginning. Tell a little bit of that story of what it looked like in the beginning and then what the final product ended up being. Was it in nature? Was it a piece of art or music? Was it an organization or a movement? Please share what you experienced.

WOW ME Wednesdays!

via Flickr”]Being human is a full time job  it means being...

I love a good party! My completely extroverted self loves to fill a room with as many different people as possible and move in and out of fascinating conversations, crazy stories, and hysterical jokes. Voices mingled together connecting, laughing, and dreaming recharges my soul. So that’s why it should come as no surprise that we are already planning our anniversary party for 11/12/11!

I have this concept of filling the entire St. Charles Coffee House with our volunteers and supporters and surrounding them with inspiring music, unique pieces of artwork, and of course lovely coffee and my favorite DONUTS among other tasty sundries.

Our theme will be “BEAUTY IN FLIGHT” to represent our tremendous journey of learning how to make a start up non-profit fly.

So today on WOW ME Wednesdays share with me how you have seen beauty lately. Has it been painful to watch, did you recognize it as beauty, why was it beautiful to you?

“Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.”Ashley Smith