This is a long recap for the year, but it’s been an incredible one and I want to let you know what has happened with Empty Frames Initiative since our launch in November of 2015.
Empty Frames Initiative started up November 4th, 2015 when we began sharing our vision at an orphan care conference out of Durham, NC. We made a lot of contacts there and kept up the conversation on social media. January of 2016 we hosted our first “Overture” event at North Ridge Church, where we shared the heart of our group and the video we created to go along with it. We continued to host “Overture” events in 4 states, in colleges and churches. This summer we held our first large-scale fundraiser, Expedition : Raleigh, a scavenger hunt in our downtown that was followed up with a dinner and award ceremony.
Our team grew, we now have a board and a team of people who have signed up as volunteers. We have partnered with multiple groups in Raleigh and look forward to collaborating in the future. We are officially recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)3 non-profit, a huge blessing that allows our donors to make tax-deductible donations and opens the door to grants.
Our team has been able to participate in multiple training opportunities, attending the CAFO Summit, taking a class on crisis care training and helping youth transition in independent living. This has all been a blessing and has added to our curriculum.
We have begun the hunt for our first facility, hopefully somewhere in Raleigh, NC. This shift in location has not meant a shift in our heart or focus to care for the Fatherless, but rather a shift in how the Lord is bringing it all about. We still intend to take our work to Eastern Europe and to the nations, but we prayerfully seek His will in accomplishing the larger goal.
The Lord is faithful. As many steps forward as we’ve taken with EFI He has met us with grace and merciful love.
On a personal level - I feel as though one of the main lessons this year has brought is the hard work of healing. Acknowledging pain and grieving, then moving forward with the Lord into grace and redemption. This field is hard. It hurts to see the brokenness of the world and then to confront the brokenness within me. This year has been learning how to mourn with those who mourn and then learning how to say, “the Lord is faithful” after seeing how much pain is wrapped up in this life. He really is faithful and He longs to draw us closer and to heal each and every hurt. To speak to us on a personal level. There is no burden you carry that is “too big” or “too small”. He longs to heal your losses and draw you into peace.
He heals the brokenhearted
And binds up their wounds.
He counts the number of the stars;
He calls them all by name.
Great is our Lord, and mighty in power;
His understanding is infinite.
He is a good, good Father. I have been beyond blessed this past year and look expectantly to the next. Thank you for your partnership, from praying to giving to conversation - it’s been a blessing to know you stand with us in this journey.
Love and thanks,