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Sunday, January 23, 2011

Friends of the Orphans Board Retreat AI

It is truly amazing to hear the positive core, the life-giving heart of a group of people come forth through the Appreciative Inquiry process!  I was familiar with this organization through being a Board member and knew that it had an especially beautiful positive core just from my own brief experience and by the astounding people I'd met.  However, I was unprepared and overwhelmed by the impact a few unconditionally positive questions could call out and expose from this organization.  I heard stories of the trajectory and direction of people's lives significantly altered due to their life-changing experiences at this organization's orphanages in Central and Latin America.  Teens returned to impact their entire families, young professionals entered the Peace Corp and non-profit vocations following a stint volunteering with the children - orphaned and abandoned but rescued, loved, raised, fed, clothed, educated, joyful and happy precious innocent children. 

It was also astounding to hear the caliber of servant leaders, people pouring out their lives in service to Christ and this mission, saints in our midst here now who are leading this organization.  I need to be around people like this!  Selfless in a selfish world, materially possessing very little but such beacons of light, strength, and holiness.  I want to be more like them!  I want to be a better person!  It brings such hope that people like this exist in this world and how can we do all we can to support, encourage, emulate them! 

There was also such a strong sense of 'Mother's/Father's Pride' within the group when they talked about the privilege of playing a small part in helping raise these children, seeing them grow and develop, become and thrive through the transformation that love provides.  Such simplicity but such power, purpose, meaning and privilege. 

One of the Board members hit on something that's been percolating with me lately too in that we have to find an outlet to do good amidst the stress and grind of our jobs.  We have to create these opportunities for ourselves or we will be ground down by the daily stresses of business.  How can we use our strengths and energies, talents and business experience to bring good to the world, to an organization such as this?  It is essential to our well-being and emotional survival!  Powerful time and I'm hoping and praying our AI time together will produce abundant fruit! 

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