As New Year’s Eve approaches, we are amazed at how God has blessed us this year, and we are thankful for the sacrifices our donors have made while facing economic hardships at home.
In his annual Christmas speech, Cross International President Jim Cavnar praised the incredible generosity of our supporters. While many Americans are giving less to charity, our most loyal donors actually increased their giving.
But the journey hasn’t been easy.
“I said two years ago that because of the challenges with the economy, we would need to do more, do it better, and we would need to take some risks,” Jim said. “Last January, I felt the Lord showed me that we would face great difficulties” in the year ahead.
Jim didn’t know those “difficulties” would include a horrific earthquake in Haiti. The disaster profoundly impacted our Haitian ministry partners, and the recovery effort required us to invest a huge amount of time and resources, even as we continued to meet our commitments to projects in other countries. But our donors responded to the call, and many lives were saved.
“2010 was one of our most difficult years. It was a year of trials and heavy burdens… But God was faithful and sustained us,” Jim said.
Nobody prays for hard times, but when they come, they are God’s way of molding and shaping us and leading us to better things. “Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him” (James 1:12). What an encouragement this promise must be to the poor!
During the countdown to 2011, let’s count our blessings and thank the Lord for his goodness!