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This Valentine’s Day, Fall In Love With the World Next Door (a special request)


Today I’m going to ask you to join me in something big. Something that has the potential to change hundreds — if not thousands — of lives in South Africa.

I get requests all the time about projects and needs and I just can’t post about them all, otherwise this blog would be overrun with requests for you to donate money to causes. And I know many of you are living on extremely tight budgets right now.

However, today, I’m going to break tradition. Because I just can’t help myself.

Lisa-Jo Baker

My friend, Lisa-Jo Baker, is one of the most beautiful women I’ve ever met. She just oozes with love and grace. And she’s hilarious, too.

I had a chance to read a pre-release copy of her new book, Surprised By Motherhood, and I loved it so very much that I wrote her and asked her how I could help promote it for her. Well, the email she sent back just blew me away. She shared with me about this huge vision she has to impact the culture in South Africa — where she grew up, where three of her siblings are adopted from, and where her parents still live and minister.

As she shared about this massive dream she had to encourage women around the globe to come together to change a community of kids in South Africa, I knew I had to tell you about it.

Fall in Love With the World Next Door

Here’s what she says:

What if between changing the diapers, the laundry and the dishes a community of mothers around the world could change the future for a community of kids in South Africa?

What if 1 blog community could build 1 South African community a safe place for sustainable food, child care, economic empowerment, job skills trainings, a gathering place for church, classrooms for HIV/Aids education, and a playground for their kids?

What if love was more than a date on the calendar this year?

What if we fell in love with the world next door?

Read her full post here to catch of glimpse of her vision behind this.

Today is Valentine’s Day and I’m going to ask you all to prayerfully consider giving something to help fund the Maubane Community Center in South Africa. Every little bit can make a difference.

If you can only give a dollar, give a dollar. If you have more wiggle room in your budget, would you prayerfully consider giving whatever amount it is that you can give?

Special Bonuses:

Motherhood is My Superpower

1. Give a donation of any amount and you’ll get the free downloadable print above emailed to you after you donate.

2. Give a donation of at least $20 and you’ll get the free downloadable print above, plus I’ll send you a copy of my book, Say Goodbye to Survival Mode. Just forward the email you receive after you donate to and include the amount you donated and your mailing address and I’ll send you a copy.

3. Give a donation of at least $40 and you’ll get the free downloadable print above, plus I’ll send you a copy of my book, Say Goodbye to Survival Mode, and I’ll pre-order you a copy of Lisa-Jo’s book, Surprised By Motherhood. Just forward the email you receive after you donate to and include the amount you donated and your mailing address and I’ll send you a copy of my book and pre-order you a copy of Lisa-Jo’s book.

If you can’t give right now, would you consider tweeting about this project (you can retweet my tweet here) or sharing this post or Lisa-Jo’s post on Facebook or via email with your friends? Let’s all band together to help change this community in South Africa!

Psst! You can also buy one of these beautiful necklaces for $24 and $12 of your purchase will be donated to this project!

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  • Mel says:

    That is awesome! I am moved. I am in!!

  • Amy says:

    Wow, Crystal, I love what you’re doing here! Love when the body works together!

  • Lisa-Jo says:

    Just sitting here with tears and hands full of so much gratitude for your amazing example of generously offering us all new ways to love better, serve more, give back. I could not possibly admire you or love you more,

  • Melinda says:

    That’s amazing. Thank you for sharing.

  • Dear Crystal,

    This is amazing. Thank you for using your platform to help promote such an amazing cause. You’ve really gone above and beyond.

    I am home full time with two kids and we’re on a tiny budget. There are months when things are literally down to pennies. I made my donation yesterday, in faith and because I’m part of Lisa’s launch team.

    I’ve been praying about reading your book for several weeks. But the extra dough isn’t there. You know how that goes. Thank you for your generous offer, which is an answer to a prayer.

  • jessica says:

    I love your generous spirit!

  • Erin says:

    Thank you so much for taking a stand and encouraging us to serve others in this way! I will be praying that the Lord uses this opportunity to give in great ways!

  • Anne says:

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    I want to speak with my husband about this tonight but I plan to donate (using my monthly allowance 🙂 ).

    I am ashamed to admit that I have been sitting here feeling sorry for myself. We got an offer on our condo yesterday within 7 hours of listing, but I am not rejoicing over the possibility of a quick sale (which is what I have been praying for). instead, I am dwelling on how we are still underwater on our mortgage and it will drain at least half of our savings towards a new home to pay off the balance. This wasn’t a surprise; we were prepared for this loss, but I am still in a funk.

    This feels like a defining moment in life where I can choose gratitude for the abundance we have and give generously to improve the lives of others.

  • ~Karrilee~ says:

    This… this is what it is all about! I love this! I am all in.

    In fact, as I was praying and preparing my own post this week, I was a little stressed out because we ARE on a tight budget and yet I personally didn’t want to post and ask for donations without giving myself. I figured it would be possible to come up with something small – which we have learned adds up fast. Then – someone stopped by my house and said they had been arguing with God for a few days, but He insisted that they give me $100. Just Wow! I knew right away where it was going… it was going deep into the soil in Africa! That is good ground! I was able to let her know I had been praying for a way to sow into this project and so now we get to share in the blessing!

    So – I already gave… and I already have your book (thanks Allume!)… and I have already pre-ordered Lisa-Jo’s book! But I just wanted to testify and to say thank you for your heart and your offer and your being All In!

    This is gonna be FUN to watch what God will do!

  • Cathy says:

    I just bought one of the necklaces — its the perfect present for an upcoming birthday, and so wonderful that half the proceeds go to such a good cause. I found Lisa-Jo’s call to fall in love with the world next door to be incredibly moving and very inspiring.

  • Kris Camealy says:

    What a beautiful way to come together for God’s kingdom, for His people!! This makes my heart happy. WOW! 🙂

  • Teresa says:

    Is there any way to donate with PayPal. I just don’t like to give out my cc info. If there was, some who don’t have much could use their SB.

    • Mel says:

      Contact Lisa-Jo through her website email and she will be able to help you 😉
      That is exactly how I did it today as well. (I gave as a paypal gift that way the bank doesn’t add extra charges)

  • Lisa says:

    Thank you so much for doing this. What generosity! I had lunch with Lisa-Jo and our respective kids today and I can tell you she was beyond words with this gesture. What a powerful way to help!

  • Nicole Roberts says:

    Having volunteered in Kenya, and seen whole villages of children orphaned by AIDS-related deaths, where newborns are stored in dresser drawers, due to a lack of space for cribs, I can tell you that any aid, wherever you can give on the continent is truly needed! I would also recommend helping an organization called Village Bank, a non-profit which gives women business loans, education, and childcare to start their own businesses, the ability to pay back loans, which in turn are given out to other women and mothers; the women themselves help rebuild villages, run schools, churches, infirmaries, provide child care services, as well as form committees to decide who else will get loans and aid. In a world where one third of our children live in abject poverty, programs like what Crystal has mentioned, and Village Bank, are Godsends to those in need! Remember, we are our brother’s keeper!

  • Thank you so much for the opportunity to give to a great ministry like this. I am very thankful that I was able to give. 😀 Praying the Lord stirs others’ hearts to give so that you would reach your goal and go beyond. 😀

  • Miranda says:

    Was this only offered on valentines day? Or am I still able to email you?

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