Introducing Monthly Missions…

Right around Thanksgiving I had this really great idea. It was such a good idea that when I got home I told my husband, “Don’t talk to me. I have to sit down and write this out so I don’t forget.”

I wrote my idea in an email to my friends Erin and Heather. They immediately responded with YES! LOVE IT! I’M IN!

Wanna hear the great idea?

I knew you would!

Every month, I’ll be introducing my kids to a ministry or organization that helps, protects or loves on kids and families in poverty and extreme need. Then, I will be challenging my kids (and myself) to support this ministry for one month. We might collect money, we might sell something to raise money, we might send cards or simply pray.

Then I thought, you know what would be even cooler? If other kids and parents were also supporting this organization! We could all do it together! We could make a big difference in the life of kids and families around the world.

Now, where do I know a group of moms and dads that might be interested in getting their kids involved in something like that? Hmmmm….

{That would be YOU!}

So, welcome to our Monthly Mission!

monthly missions

Each month, I’ll challenge you to join my kids and me in supporting a really fabulous ministry. I’ll give kid-friendly ideas to join up and then it will be up to you to join in.

Here’s the fun parts:

1. Each month, a guest blogger-friend will join us. They’ll be doing the challenge with their kids and asking their readers to join us. That’s two whole big groups of people sending support to one organization!

This month the super fabulous Erin from Home With the Boys is joining our mission. I wish I could tell you how much I love her. Erin is passionate about raising her boys for the Lord, is a big postivie voice on the internet and a sweet girl who you’ll want to be your new BFF.

2. At the end of each month, we’ll report back here on how much we raised, how we prayed or how we supported this organization. I’ll compile the info and we’ll be amazed at how little kids did big work for God and His people!

I cannot wait!!

So. Are you ready for February’s mission? (Get your 007, Jason Bourne, Mission Impossible face on, here we go!) Please meet, Sweet Sleep

Sweet Sleep

Sweet Sleep’s goal is simple, “a bed for every head”. It was a small dream that began when Jen Gash (the founder) saw orphanages in Moldova with flimsy mattresses stacked in corners. Children didn’t have their own spot, their own bed or even their own mattress.

They now provide beds to Moldova, Africa and Haiti. Along with beds, they also provide mosquito nets for beds. Did you know every 30 seconds a child dies from malaria? And they could have been protected by a simple mosquito net? A mosquito net that only costs $8.

Sweet Sleep’s theme verse, if you will, is Proverbs 3:24, “When you lie down you will not be afraid; when you lie down your sleep will be sweet.” I imagine children lying down in huts with their own bed, under their own mosquito net sleeping sweet for the first time in their lives.

Sweet Sleep takes it further and brings education and Bibles to the kids and families who receive a bed. I watched about ten of their videos on YouTube and fell more in love with them with every one!

Nickels for NetsMy kids and I are partnering with Sweet Sleep’s Nickels for Nets program. Here’s what we’ve done so far and are planning on doing this month:

1. I showed the kids a few videos on the Sweet Sleep YouTube page to introduce them to the ministry and the people.

2. I read and did some of the activities on the Nickels for Nets curriculum. It’s a free download on their website and is super easy.

3. We found a jar to use for collection. (Lydia also grabbed her Hello Kitty coin purse to take on the road.)

4. We scrounged around the house for coins, emptied piggy banks and more. (This was surprisingly fun for the kids. I bet they searched for a half an hour.)

5. Everywhere we go, we’re asking friends, family, classmates, etc. if they’d like to donate nickels. I even made this little flyer so my shy kiddos can show it to people. (They haven’t used it yet, I made it after church today.)

(Isn’t it cute? I made one for Asa that says “my sister and I” and one for Lydia that says, “my brother and I”. I also added my email address to it and am going to have Lydia write her name on hers.)

The kids are super excited about this. And knowing that I’m asking you to join in is making them even more excited! So, will you? Will you join us in Nickels for Nets? I’d love to see how many nickels we can collect this month–imagine how many kids we could cover in mosquito nets and prayer with just a little legwork from us and our kiddos!

Don’t forget to link up your pictures or blog posts on our linky on the main Monthly Mission page. If you’re tweeting or instagramming, use the #monthlymission and #nickelsfornets hashtags so we can follow along. If you’ve got a website, you can even grab a cute little button to put in your sidebar.

Wheeee! I’m so excited!

Who’s in?!

{Don’t forget to check out Erin’s post to see what she and her boys are doing for Nickels for Nets!}
ohamanda.com

 

Comments

  1. My family is in! My husband deploys next week this program will be exactly what we need. To focus in others instead of what we’re missing! Thanks so much.

  2. We are definitely in. We just got finished collecting change for our local Crisis Pregnancy Center. This is the perfect way for us to continue collecting our change!

  3. I am in!! Thank you for doing this – taking the guesswork out of figuring out “what to do” !!

    • yes! thank you! In my experience some agencies do not welcome kids, so I have been stumped on what to do instead. My kids have a heart to help others, and I want to help them grow in that way.

  4. Love this!!! I host a {Hope for the Home} linky party every Monday that is all about anything that helps families make God apart of their everyday lives and homes. Would love for you to guest post for this series, to share your Monthly Missions idea! Check us out at http://www.worthyoftheprize.com and ontact me at worthyoftheprize.erin@yahoo.com if you are interested. Thanks so much!

  5. Oh Amanda! ;) I wish you could have heard the shout of joy that escaped my lips this morning as I read this blog! This is direct answer to prayer, a God-send, a thank you from a mama’s heart! My family and I have felt called out from the institutional church over the past year. I have prayed and struggled and obsessed over this path and it’s effect on my children. We were so used to “programs” and having the institution “organize” us for ministry. We have been extremely blessed to be following this path but I’ve been struggling to find a way for our family to engage in mission in a bigger context. With your ideas and activities, this will be a huge blessing not only to ourselves but to those lives we will touch around the world together! I am so excited to partner with you on this journey!!! GOD BLESS this effort and your servant heart!

  6. Our home is completely joining you on this journey! I’ve already ordered our boxes + have an email drafted to some of Auggie’s little friends to enlist their help! Thanks for always being faithful to infuse your home with worship alongside your kids.

    Love + miss you…
    Alle

  7. Awesome! We are in! I even passed this along to our children’s pastors at church! Thank you so much for making it “easy” to get involved. I am so excited, and I LOVE Erin, too!!

  8. What a wonderful idea! My girls are two months and nearly three…I’d love to get started with my big girl on this, but I’m wondering if she’s too young to understand? Are there any of the videos or parts of the curriculum in particular you’d recommend for one so young? Most of the ones I looked at we’re awesome, but conveyed the message so much in text. Thanks! :)

  9. I teared up as I read this… Last year as we walked through Lent and we were focusing on giving to a specific organization… God placed a desire in my heart for our family to do what I called “Giving Missions” on a regular basis… Why only focus on giving at certain times during the year, right? … So, I wanted to seek out some organizations.. local and global… that we could support … maybe something each week or month… not sure. Well… I have never been able to put legs to it. Your post has inspired me to follow my heart on this one again. And maybe we will just be joining in on your fun until I can get myself a little more organized! :) Thanks for sharing! BTW… Sweet Sleeps was one of the organizations I had on my list to support!

  10. I love the idea of introducing kids to service, and showing them the importance of helping those less fortunate.

  11. Hooray! I love this idea! My daughter is always trying to think up new ways to help and I just know she will be all over this project!!!! Thank you for your brilliance!!!!

  12. I am so super duper excited for this! And God knew I needed all this happy to start happening just today, to take the yucky out of a house full of sickness! And your words = heart overflowing. Love you much girl! Let’s go change the world WITH our kids!

  13. My kids are a little older, 14 and 10, and we talk about and also give to others in need but it always seems like there are so many choices that sometimes it is overwhelming to decide who to give to. I love this idea. We could focus on 12 different groups each year. Yay!!!

  14. We’ve been thinking about doing something like this for awhile!! I’m off to take the kiddo to play rehearsal, but will read more on this later!! :)

  15. Love, Love, LOVE!!!!!!!!!!

  16. this is a fantastic thing. i hope to get my kids involved

  17. Woot!!! Changing the world with change…love it. My boys are going to be uber excited about this one. Thanks chica for leading the way to good things. love.

  18. I LOVE this! I’ve been trying to think of ways for the boys to get out of themselves a bit… LOVE IT!

  19. LOVE this!!! This is exactly what I needed to get us started with missions. My girls are excited and have already made their “collection jar”. I showed them several of the videos and we’ve prayed and they are on a mission to tell everyone about it (and collect nickels!). Thank you so much. Awesome idea.

  20. I am slightly obsessed with the Monthly Missions idea! My family is totally in! I love your blog by the way!

  21. Wow, I want to do this! I’ll have to talk with my husband about it, who will no doubt raise the question of, “But what if we don’t agree about a particular ministry your blogger has chosen?” (You know, the one that supports ax-murdering-while-stealing-while-chewing-tobacco-and-saying-swear-words-while-skipping-church-on-Sunday-and-saying-no-to-orphans), to which I will respond that we have a few ministries of our own that we could support if we ever disagree on a particular choice. No problem! :-) But I would LOVE for my kids to do this and hope to join you soon. Great idea!!! We donated three shoeboxes to Operation Christmas Child this last year, our first time to ever teach our kids about giving to others, and they are still talking about it three months later (it helps that I have photos of them with their shoeboxes on our screen saver, so that they regularly see themselves involved in the process of giving :-)). We also support four children through World Vision, and I have been thinking recently about putting up posters in our dining room showing the children, their countries, and other interesting details about what we’re doing. Our children are all special needs, internationally adopted, and have been so consuming of our physical and mental energy that we really haven’t ever done much with teaching them about our World Vision-sponsored children, but now would be a good time to start teaching them they are a part of a giving family and that they can pray and give and be involved. Thanks for this post — all at once I’m really excited! :-)

    • You can assure your husband there will be no supporting of ax-murderers or chewing tobacco!

      Ha!!

      I love the idea of putting posters up of your WV kids’ countries. We have our kids’ pictures out in our living room so we can see them often, but I’d like to do more.

      :)

      a

  22. Are you open to suggestions for ministries to support?

    • Yes, email me! amanda at ohamanda.com

      • I am sorry; I am not the most computer literate person. When I click on the email link it takes me back to your website. Am I missing something? Sorry.
        I want to share with you about our ministry and what we are doing. I just started putting together a blog, but as I said, I struggle with technology.
        We are reaching out to children in one of the poorest neighborhoods in Iowa. We started Forest Ave Outreach when we moved to the King-Irving neighborhood in Sept. 2012. We do regular Kids Club Outreaches. We are putting together a Carpentry Club, Tea party/Crafting Club, Fishing Club and Garden Club. Or goal is to reach kids through these various activities, and share Biblical truths with them through the activities we are doing – relating the Word of god to everyday life in a way the kids can understand.
        We are trying to purchase some empty lots in the neighborhood to set up our community garden/garden club. The lots are expensive as investors are beginning to purchase them to put up rental homes and multiplexes. We are looking at leasing a property with the option to purchase just to get the ball rolling.
        Currently we are supporting 90% or more of the ministry ourselves. We trust that the Lord is going to bring people alongside of us to support the ministry financially, prayerfully and through volunteering with us. We are working on putting together a board so that we can file articles of incorporation and then apply for 501c3 non-profit status. We have the $$$ set aside for the filing fees and are working with a couple of people on how to file.
        One of the things the Lord has laid on my heart is to have church in the park across the street from our home. The park is unique as it is the “hub/heart” of this neighborhood. It is like the Aerogapus or riverbank of Paul’s time – the place where people meet and spend time. Many people we have talked to in our neighborhood don’t go to church because they are uncomfortable around the suits and dresses, the building makes them nervous, it is too early in the morning, etc… Paul brought the gospel to the people, we desire to follow Paul’s example and do the same. We want to have a church in the park, wearing shorts, t-shirts and flip-flops and provide an atmosphere where people are comfortable can interact throughout the time of teaching. Our heart is to disciple, equip and send people out to do the work of the ministry.
        This is getting too long. I am sorry for that. Please feel free to email me for more details. You can see pictures on our Facebook page http://www.facebook.com/forestaveoutreach and read our blogs at http://forestaveoutreach.blogspot.com/
        I love what you are doing and will be praying that the Lord continues to use you for His Glory.

  23. GAME ON! I am grabbing my toddler and my preschool sunday school class and we joining the team. I am so excited to teach them to reach out to children in need.

  24. this is a wonderful way to nurture our children to have a heart for God’s people!!! thankyou so much I look forward to seeing what each month will be.
    God Bless

  25. Thanks for the idea! We’re in! My 4 year old asked, “Can we do something to help them today?” I don’t know how much she understands (and my 2 year old, even less, I’m sure) but this seems like a great way to engage them! I love the flier you created: would you mind sharing the file (or telling us how you made it) so we can make our own versions?

  26. We did this last year as a family and called it Scattered Gifts. I blogged about it monthly. One of our first projects was Sweet Sleep as well. We ended with a famly pajama party that month. I posted about it last year. I didn’t get all my posts done in the last months because although we continued our projects as a family. I was just getting ready to post about our Scattered Gifts this year which will be focusing on ways to give locally. Excited to see that other families have the same ideas. I hope you will check my blog to see what we did. There’s even a tab at the top that highlights our projects.

    • Just a couple more thoughts … This has been part of our family mission and I would be excited to join with other families and keep on doing this even if some of the projects are repeats for us. I would love to spread the word through our connections and blog as well. If you would like any help in the planning I would be interested and have some ideas. I’d love to connect.

  27. Holly Winters says:

    Hey Amanda! I love this monthly mission idea!!! Any chance I could convince you to make a printable link to your flyer above? I could certainly create my own, but since you’ve already done it….:)
    Thanks!!!

  28. Geat way to involve others. Look forward to reading and joining in on the service. thanks!

  29. Lisa Neumann says:

    So… how are people doing?? We were totally, both-feet-in, absolutely on board. Mostly, my kids were totally in. They put me to shame. I thought it was an excellent idea, and definitely worth trying, but I wasn’t sure how it would work out. But I thought it was worth the risk. HOWEVER, so far we have only found 52 nickels. Mostly from my spare change jar. The kids have been bugging everyone they see about this, but nobody seems to have any nickels! My son’s tumbling teacher told him he could put a jar up at the studio, but otherwise nobody has really responded. My kids are already worried and anxious about HOW ON EARTH ARE WE GOING TO GET 800 NICKELS???? I mean, I guess it’s good they are now concerned about kids getting sick from malaria, and we’re learning a lot of math lessons, but where are we going to get 748 more nickels? Any thoughts?

  30. What a wonderful idea! Our church is looking for ideas to share with the kids during VBS week and this orginization looks like a good fit. If you are looking for more ideas, Cupcake Kids is a great charity that kids can get involved with by hosting a bake sale.

  31. Hi Amanda,
    My kids and I are excited about this project!
    Erin

Trackbacks

  1. [...] This month’s mission is Sweet Sleep, an organization that provides beds and mosquito nets for beds to Moldova, Africa and Haiti. You can read more about the organization and find out how Amanda introduced it to her kids here. [...]

  2. [...] Nickels…Changing Hearts I wasn’t planning on posting an update to our involvement in Nickels for Nets this month.  I was just going to silently leave a comment on Amanda’s blog so she could add [...]

  3. [...] they raised $166.31! WHOA!! Way to go!! That’s enough for 20 nets! Here are links to Amanda’s and Erin’s blog posts about their experience with Nickels for Nets if you would like more [...]

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