What’s your brand of “crazy”?
My guess is that we all know someone who’s a little bit (or maybe just plain, but I’m not talking about that.) “crazy.” You see it in their thoughts, deeds, or actions. It sets them apart. It’s un-phased by popular opinion. It’s all consuming. It’s unrelenting. And sometimes? It recruits others to come along beside them.
There is this woman at my church who is completely on board with her brand of crazy. Her’s is adoption. She has a great personal testimony about what put her into the throes of eradicating the orphan crisis. You can check out her her vlog here. (And you’ll quickly see why I thought she was “crazy” 😉 I can say this because she is now my friend.) Whenever I used to think of her or speak of her, it was always in the context of “You know that crazy woman? Deanna?” I knew her story and what made her “crazy” was this: she found her PURPOSE. The reason for all the good (and the bad) things that have happened in her life? It’s all been directing her to this. You can tell. It is, seemingly, all she talks (excitedly and passionately) about. She’ll take over the microphone. Stand on stage (the thought of this ever being me makes me shudder). Answer questions. She’ll put a video camera In. Your. Face. And then ASK YOU questions (I’m not a fan of this practice). She even SINGS ABOUT IT. And I? I am in awe. It was the first time I’d ever seen first hand what happens when someone gets THAT God crazy. And I secretly hoped it would happen to me.
I just didn’t know how I’d go getting “all crazy” (unless it was that “just plain” variety) when I have two young children, a husband, home and nice little suburban American life. How do you get wrecked for something when you’re already so busy that many mornings require two cups of coffee to help you recover from the day before (much less the day ahead)? I don’t think anyone really seeks out, or plans, the crazy. It’s just something that happens if you’re willing: A seed is planted. A tiny little thing. But seeds grow. The interests? They become passions. The passions? They become non-negotiable-totally-sold-out-have-to-make-them-happen obsessions. That, my friends? That’s when the “crazy” hits. (If you need help identifying your “crazy thang,” check out this FABULOUS blog posting by one of my all time favorite bloggers, and where I was introduced to Noonday Collection for the very first time.)
If you’ve been reading here long (the whole 5 months that I’ve been sporadically blogging), you know from my first posting that I got (more than) kinda wrecked last year. For the orphan. For the widow. For the poor. The oppressed. The down-trodden. The slave. People who look different from me and live in entirely different cultures, climates, economies, etc. than me. That it FINALLY hit me, but for the GRACE OF GOD GO I. Really. Just try to wrap your brain around that! The privilege it is to be born with all of our “first world problems.”
I’m an optimist. A “glass half-full” kind of girl. I think we can actually DO SOMETHING TO CHANGE THE WORLD. Is it overwhelming when you hear news that hundreds of people died so that you can buy that $5 shirt at Walmart? Yes. Is it easier to feel numb when you hear (or read here) that children as young as 8 years old are enslaved, carrying machetes, and working in the hottest place on earth to harvest those cocoa beans that become the yummy chocolate you non-chalantly purchase on your lunch break from the vending machine at your job that is paying you more in one minute than many of them will make in a month or even possibly a year (if they get paid at all)? You bet. But I believe that to whom much is given, much is required. It should be our business to know the who, what, where and how. The small seed that was planted when I contracted the crazy that seeps from Jessica, the founder of Noonday Collection, has led me to make those things my business. And then I want to make it YOUR BUSINESS if you’ll read this blog, or come to a trunk show. (My husband just told me yesterday when I started going off on my research about Valentine’s flowers “Do you want to ruin everything for everybody?” He was smiling when he said it, so he is still breathing this morning.) I live in the Research Triangle area of NC and would love to share the Noonday and fair trade love with you and your friends. I’m pretty nice most days, and really not as intense as some of these sentences may imply. It’s just that I found my brand of crazy (it’s fair trade and social justice issues, if you want to put a label on it). And I’m really hoping it’s contagious.
Wow. This turned out to be more than I expected in all this writing. (I think I wrote so much to avoid answering my son’s early morning question about how the babies got out of my body. ANYWAY.)
Good news! I also believe that if you don’t give up, you’ll reap rewards! So, for hanging with me and reading this whole post (with a number of run on sentences), you can enter to win. And I have two things to giveaway, because I have amazing friends!! First up is a $50 gift card to Noonday Collection.
Secondly is this amazing handwoven Ugandan basket from The Mighty River Project. I have one that I ADORE. It’s teal and yellow and red and ah-mazing.
I asked my friend, Erin (who founded The Mighty River Project with her husband), to tell us a little more about her brand of crazy. Here’s what she said:
We are for sustainability, we are for families, we are for JESUS!
The Mighty River Project’s current projects include consistent income for four artisans, livestock micro-lending, and several benevolence initiatives supporting local orphanages and providing supplies for mamas to get on their feet and be able to keep their families in tact.
TMRP’s full-time program in Uganda will minister to vulnerable women so that they can be empowered to keep their families in tact. The program will have four main components:
1. Job training and craft skills.
2. On-site childcare.
3. Orphan-care service learning.
4. Discipleship and mentoring.
Isn’t she awesome? I also love that she and her husband read books out loud to each other so they can each process the information together. (I don’t have the patience for this.)
So the rules: I wanted to do a rafflecopter deal, but wordpress.com bloggers can’t. So you’ll just have to leave comments below. One comment equals one entry.
1. Follow this blog and comment below!
2. Go to my Noonday website and come back to comment what you’d like to spend the $50 on. (If this is your first time checking Noonday out, I’m not responsible for your inevitable obsession.)
3. “Like” The Mighty River Project on Facebook here.
4. Make a tax-deductible donation to The Mighty River Project (here). Come back to comment that you did and you’ll get 10 entries for that one!
5. Subscribe to crazy Deanna’s vlog and learn more about adoption, multi-ethnic families and parenting, and lots of other entertaining things. Come back and comment.
I’ll do a random.org drawing on Monday, January 21, as we celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. A man who was “crazy” enough to stand up for social justice issues too. (That gives you lots of days to enter to win.) PLEASE be sure to enter your email address so I can contact you.