Wendi is a normal mom with four young children. For several years, we were neighbors. Our older kids used to play together in front yards and driveways while we stood around and talked. We were even pregnant with our third babies at the same time, delivering weeks apart.
Even though my family moved out of the neighborhood almost three years ago, I have kept up with Wendi and her husband, Sam through mutual friends, Christmas cards, Facebook and our family blogs. I have been aware of Wendi and Sam’s dedication to helping orphans in Africa and their involvement with philanthropic organizations like HopeChest and Red Letters Campaign. But I hadn't fully realized how sincere they were in their dream to live their lives out loud as a testament to their faith in God until recently.
Last year, Sam left a nice job so they could start a new microgiving organization named, HopeMongers to fight poverty, address human rights issues and encourage adoption overseas.
We all like to pass on information about helping others and donating money, but those who very drastically change everything to dedicate their lives to helping others are rare and special.
And yet, one reason I’ve been so inspired by Wendi is that she is not perfect. By her own admission, she is a normal mom who sometimes struggles with raising four small children, homeschooling, keeping house, and juggling the normal daily duties life throws at you. On her blog, she admits her own failings and how she turns to God for strength and guidance. Even in the midst of doing good works, she shares the same vulnerabilities as the rest of us. What makes her stand out is that through her love of Christ and her husband, she is following the path the Lord has laid out for her.
Recently, Sam and Wendi returned from an extended visit to Ethiopia to make connections, deliver supplies and work hard for those people in need. And if that alone wasn’t what many of us would consider a challenge, they also brought their four young children, ages 6, 5, 3 and 1 with them on this adventure. Reading her descriptions and seeing pictures of their trip had me in awe. I find it difficult enough to take my children on a trip across the state; the idea of taking them to a third world country blows me away.
But this is who she is. God has called her and Sam to this work and they not only listened to the call, they also have the faith and courage to follow it wherever it leads them.
Copyright 2010 Lisa Jones
About the Author
Lisa Henley Jones is a wife, mom, native Texan, and parish communications director. She enjoys reading, walking, going on date nights, and cheering on her kids in their activities. As a social media consultant, Lisa teaches Catholic parishes to engage, inspire, and evangelize on social media. Find her blog at Of Sound Mind & Spirit and her social media course at Parish Social Media.