Dreaming big

In Uncategorized on September 9, 2012 at 9:58 pm

Last year you may remember that Phillip and I worked on this during the months of November and December. Since I can be terrible about sharing on here about things that matter, and great at telling you what I ate last week, all me to catch you up…

The project caught on with several of our friends, including one who gave a generous donation of over a thousand blank Christmas cards, and before we knew it we were passing out boxes of cards to all sorts of people to have them fill them out. I took cards to several parties, and my friends were often gracious enough to set up a table just for people to fill them out. I asked co-workers to participate. My dad asked the people in his office to join in. Several friends got their co-workers involved. At our church’s monthly outreach picnic in Shady Hill we set up a table so that the people there could fill out cards. Basically everywhere I went for a month I had Christmas and holiday cards on me in case there was a chance to grab a message and signature.

And aside from the lady who commented to my father “I’ll buy cards for soldiers but not prisoners” (ugghhhhh) we had a pretty great response from people. I was blessed to see even my friends of different faiths, or no faith, participate.

Though I had been nervous about having enough cards, in the end my family only had to fill out about 300 cards ourselves due to over 1,100 other cards being donated!  And so on the rainy morning of December 21st Phillip and I drove out to the Richmond jail for the first time in our lives. It was/is a depressing place. We briefly met the jail’s chaplain and handed over almost 1,500 Christmas and holiday cards, all with personal handwritten messages.

I later received a letter from the chaplain sharing that no one had ever donate enough cards for every inmate to have one during the holidays. I was excited to be a part of this happening for the first time, but also saddened that it had not happened before then. Leaving the jail I also had this feeling of “there has to be something more”. I mean giving the cards was good and all, but it was still more transactional than relational than I would have liked.

With that in mind this year Phillip and I’s goal is to get inside of the jail. And while I’m not sure this is even possible, I hope to gain access to those in solitary confinement. I’m not sure that I will come bearing a gift of cards, but I hope to come bearing the gift of music. That is almost all I can share about it for now…other than to say if you are my friend, or even live in my town and are a musician, you may be hearing from me soon.

Phillip and I are planning early this year because 1. We seriously did not have enough time last year, and had to scramble like wild banshees to make it happen, 2. We sort of, but in the for real way, have a baby due in the beginning of December, after which I will have a kid attached to my boobs all the time, and be a tired zombie of a woman,  and 3. We are dreaming bigger than last year. Much bigger in fact that just us getting into the jail with some musician friends.

We have a dream to inspire all of our Richmond neighbors to conspire to together in spreading some joy, hope, and love this coming season. This morning my pastor stated that we have all the true riches in the world, and that our calling is to share it with others; especially the poor, downtrodden, and oppressed. In this sucky, depressing, divisive, and important election year we hope to remind people that more important than showing up at the ballot box is showing up in our communities to share the wealth of talent, time, passion, and heart we have.

Dear world my Jesus is not to be found at the RNC or DNC. Jesus is to be found in the daily interactions between you, me, and a world that is full of prisoners, elderly people in nursing homes with no visitors, and Sikh temples and Muslim mosques that are getting shot up and bombed in our own towns.These are some of the people we hope to reach this coming season. These are the people we want to share our wealth with.


So yes, there will be a bigger announcement coming as Phillip and I can put together a more complete invitation to others to Inspire & Conspire with us this coming season. My hope and prayer is that you will want to participate as well!



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