Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Stand with Me - Part 1

Pictures tell stories. Some photographs capture enough for you to translate a moment and some leave it to you to make your own conclusions. But one thing is for sure, as one photographer put it, “photography transcends language.” This is what is so beautiful about the art of photography. Some photos make you smile, some captivate you, some deeply hurt, and some leave you wondering about the “real story.”

Vivienne Harr, at just nine years old, made headlines all over the world due to a series of photos she saw at a gallery by Lisa Kristine that captured her heart and led her into action. Vivienne's eyes were opened to child slavery that day. Her little heart broke as she came across photos of those children who weren’t running and playing outside like she was. Those children are in bondage.

My husband and I had the privilege to meet Vivienne and her family last week as we saw the documentary, “Stand with Me” a film by Stillmotion. The documentary is not yet out for the public view but you can catch a trailer of it here. To see if the premier is coming to a theater near you look here. Don't worry if it's not making its way near you because if you are interested in hosting a screening of this movie see what it takes by visiting here

I can go on and on about this little girl but what amazed me most is how she didn't let age, or circumstance, or the naysayers stand in the way of what became and has become her new passion, to see children free from slavery.

It started with a question. What can I do to help? Her goal: To free 500 children which translates to $150,000. In response to that Vivienne made a lemon aide stand and started selling lemonade. For 365 days she stayed the course and "worked" so that other children could be set free from the very thing she was doing, working.
Vivienne's lemonade sold at HEB's Central Market Stores

There is so much to this story and I'm not even doing it justice by covering all the details so I hope you take a stand in this very important cause and follow her story.

 I was so challenged on many levels, but over the course of today and tomorrow I'd like to share with you the two lessons I came away with. So stay tuned for Lesson #2 tomorrow.

Lesson #1 - Do what you can with what you have.

Is there something brewing deep within your spirit that keeps tugging at your heart? 

Don't stand back and watch others fulfill that "task." Do it. I realize stepping out in faith feels scary but don't lose focus on the mission. When things start to get a little rough or you hit up against a wall, keep your eyes focused on Jesus. Don't start looking at the troubles that surround you. Don't doubt him and his ability to carry you through because that will only cause you to sink. The one and only God who brought you out on the water is the one who can keep your from drowning. So keep walking in faith.

You don't feel qualified? You aren't ready? What do I have to offer? The excuses will keep you from seeing the mission fulfilled. Don't forget Vivienne was 9 at the time! Now I realize that a 9 year old isn't thinking about where is the money going to come from, the logistics, and the how's but I'm reminded of how God loves children. He loves children because of their faith. There's no mountain too big. There's no putting God in a box. Be creative. What we do makes a difference!

Think of the ministries, the causes, the organizations, the friendships, etc. that will be aborted because you didn't take a stand, you didn't rise to the occasion and you didn't answer the call.

You can follow Vivienne and her cause on Instagram, Facebook & Twitter.

You can also read up on some of the stories written about her here, here, and here

To contribute financially to this cause you can do so here
Me & Vivienne

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