We are two years old. It’s hard to really take in how time has flown.
This last year has been all about growth. We added two new Reconciled World partners and seven new TCT projects. We’ve expanded beyond Asia and now have partners in Uganda and DR Congo. We have also been involved in training in Republic of Congo (a whole different country from DR Congo) and in South Sudan.
With all this growth, the big question has become, “Who are we?”
I know, most wait until their teenage years to have an identity crisis. We are running a tad early. We started as an outshoot of a much larger organisation. With five programs in seven locations and a $600,000 budget there wasn’t a whole lot of time for pondering life. God launched us out on our own and continues to sustain us, for which we are wildly thankful. However, all this growth in the last year has brought up questions we had never considered. We don’t have all the answers. Does anyone? But as we celebrate our birthday I thought it would be a good opportunity to review the basics of who we are for those who may have also been wondering.
Why do we exist?
Well fortunately we haven’t been struggling with the answer to this question. Right from when we began, God gave us a clear sense of calling. As an organisation we believe that God has called us to demonstrate the power of starting with the Bible as we address areas of brokenness such as poverty, oppression, and injustice. Too often we start with the best practices and then add a heavy dose of prayer and a few scriptures. We believe that isn’t quite right. We need to flip it on its head, starting with the Bible and then moving to best practices. Our foundation needs to be God. So what does that actually look like? We searched scripture, prayed and reflected on what God had taught us in the many years that most of us had been running our programs. From there we came up with seven core principles that we felt were vital in building programs that bring transformation. We certainly don’t believe that this is the definitive list, dropped from heaven. But we can testify that we have seen amazing things happen as we start with these.
So what are the core principles?
So glad you asked. Here they are:
- Depending on God
- Nurturing Truth and Confronting Lies
- Integrating Physical and Spiritual
- Partnering with Churches
- Focusing on the Vulnerable
- Mobilizing Local Resources
- Pursuing God’s Ways
So do you have lots of offices around the world running all these programs?
Nope, one of the many unique things about RW, right from day one, is that most of our programs are being run by locally registered non profits. We don’t have offices around the world, nor are we just a loose network. We work through covenant partnerships. In these partnerships, organisations or individuals come to us with a desire to reshape their work so that it reflects our core principles. It’s a huge commitment on their part and we do all we can to help them be successful. We offer everything from help with program design to training or fundraising. We call it a covenant partnership to reflect the fact that it’s not just a casual relationship, but that we have made a significant commitment to one another.
Are you looking for more partners?
Well, strangely, I’m not a wild fan of growth, so I am tempted to say NO, we have enough going on! But we do believe that God has called us to continue to work with more non-profit organisations to help them to have a kingdom impact. We love hearing stories of lives changed and enjoy working with others to see them have the greatest possible impact. However, we do need to get a few more things in place to be able to do that well. So while the word we would have chosen to describe our first year was ‘peace’, and the second year ‘growth’, we are anticipating that the word we will use to describe our third year will be the rather unsexy ‘systems.’ We hope to be able to welcome more partners soon, as those systems are put in place.
It’s been an amazing year and we are eagerly awaiting the next one. We have no doubt it will be filled with excitement, heartache, faith-stretching and surprises. We hope you’ll join us on the journey.