Grateful Hearts

In the early stages as the vision of Bright Side Youth Ranch began to form and  take shape, Devin and I were quickly overwhelmed at the enormity of it all.  For a few years, we struggled and wrestled with the understanding of how we would not be able to accomplish the mission of the ranch on our own.  We had to come to a place of surrender and acknowledge that Bright Side Youth Ranch would be so much bigger than our own selves and that it would need more than just what we could offer.

We know we need God.  He is the source of the dream and without Him, we certainly wouldn't get very far.  But, we also know we need other people in all sorts of ways - from prayer and financial supporters to volunteers and mentors.  The hard part to risk is wondering if anyone else would see the mission and vision the way we do.  Would anyone get behind it and help us make it happen?

This past month, we had an opportunity to take the risk by running an online campaign to raise funds for the early stages of starting the ranch.  We had one month to raise $6000.  We were both excited and nervous.  The first few days were filled with excitement as quite a few Founding Members partnered with us, but the middle of the month was quiet.  We started to question all sorts of things and felt again the enormity of what we are trying to do.  We were pleasantly overwhelmed in the final two days of the campaign, though, by both the number of givers and the generosity of their financial gifts.  It was encouraging and a great reminder that we aren't in this alone.

Here is an excerpt from Devin's journal about the end of the campaign:

 Wow!  What an amazing night as we watched our fundraising campaign total swell from $2500 yesterday to just over $6000 tonight. Friends and family stepped up and gave generously and put us in over the top. God did it!  He provided even when I doubted that He would and was discouraged that He hadn't already. It was a good lesson for me in His timing, His faithfulness and His willingness to bless us even though we don't deserve it.  We didn't do anything special, and He chose to bless us graciously. He deserves all the glory!