Every week we offer a prayerful reflection from a member of the Unbound community. This week our reflection is from Managing Editor Loretta Shea Kline.
No one likes to be told what to do. My grown daughters remind me of that truism when my “advice” may not be as helpful as I might think. The fact is that people respond much better when they have the space to come up with their own solutions to problems.
At Unbound, we believe lasting change comes from within and that the surest path out of poverty is a self-directed one. In other words, the individuals and families participating in our programs know more about what they need than we do. What they require from us is a willingness to listen and accompany them on their path to change.
That’s what sponsors do when they commit to support a child, youth or elder. They offer material help through their monthly financial contribution, trusting that Unbound and the sponsored individual or family will use the funds in the best way. Sponsored friends often share in their letters the progress they’re making through that support. (And when sponsors write back, they give even more in the form of direct encouragement.)
Solutions to poverty in Unbound come from the grassroots, from the families themselves as they partner with local staffers to set goals, make plans to achieve them and hold each other accountable through parent groups. Change comes from within. It’s what we believe wholeheartedly.
Loving God, you gave us the gift of free will to chart our own course. You also gave us the blessing of accompaniment by the Holy Spirit and our fellow human beings. Open our eyes to see potential, our ears to listen to dreams, our minds to create opportunity and our hearts to give freely of ourselves. May we seek your wisdom as we go forth with faith and confidence, knowing we’re not alone. We ask this in your holy name. Amen.