BY SUMMER WILLIAMS
As the grant writer and a fundraiser, I often find myself sitting in front of a blank screen thinking of what I could write for these blog posts. I've never experienced writer's block in the past so why now? I guess I always assume that people don't want to know what it was like getting the end of year mailing together or how long it took to write my most recent grant or how many envelopes with financial statements I stuffed today. And I'm fairly certain y'all will be thankful that I am NOT writing about any of that today.
However, wrapping up 2014 and going into 2015, I think I have a lot to write about. I have been a fundraiser for almost 15 years now. I have worked at an inner city nonprofit, United Way, and Piedmont Park Conservancy in Atlanta. They were all great organizations and it was an honor to help raise money for such worthy causes. In my experience, I have seen detailed and thoughtful fundraising plans and donor approaches laid out for million dollar campaigns. And many times they worked. The strategic planning paid off in the long run. There were no prayers or reliance on a higher power to meet the monetary goals of those organizations; just hard, solid facts of what would work.
But this is my first job with a ministry and I cannot begin to tell you the extraordinary things I have seen the Lord do at Common Ground Montgomery. I came in with my plans, spreadsheets, and a grant writing calender. I thought I was prepared to do my job and do it well. I learned quickly that we are fairly small with a limited number of staff, technology, and even office space. But as this past year has proved, none of that matters. The plans that God has for CGM and the people on the west side of Montgomery far surpasses our circumstances and my plans.
I am constantly in awe when the donations come in. It makes no sense! I have never seen anything like it.
Sometimes after a difficult month or unexpected expenses have occurred, I start to worry about if I have planned properly or if have enough grants submitted to hopefully make up for any shortcomings. Then a $10,000 check, or twenty $100 checks, will come in the mail and as I'm rejoicing I am reminded of something spectacular. The Lord has gone before me and worked in the hearts of our donors. He has gone ahead of all my plans and has shown our donors that what we are doing here matters. He has not left us or abandoned us. His provision far exceeds mine and continually will.
So with all this being said, here I go in to 2015 with a new found reliance on the Lord. He is with us and desires to see His kingdom grow. This wouldn't be possible without you, our donors. I am so thankful that you listened when the Lord called you to give and I am beyond grateful that I get to directly witness the generosity of the God's people. The Lord has called you to help us with our mission in loving the Washington Park community. He has not forgotten this neighborhood and neither have you.