This video I made for Lion's Thread was a last minute, unexpected, short film opportunity. Jonah and I didn't know we were going to have our eyes opened and hearts softened by what is happening in Igonga, Uganda. Lion's Thread exists to empower lives through African-Inspired men's wear, selling bowties, regular ties, and pocket squares to men in America. Listening to Sarah's story, the director of Lion's Thread in Uganda, Jonah and I were truly blown away by the impact that Lion's Thread had on her life and IS having on her life, along with the other women who are employed by Lion's Thread. Offering an improved and hopeful view of life for women in rural Uganda, Lion's Thread is doing more than just making men's necks look pretty dang awesome. You can purchase one of these amazing, opportunity filled, bowties here: https://www.lionsthread.com/
The moment I stepped foot onto The African SOUP's campus I started to cry. Now, if you know me (Kiersten), you know I don't cry very often...usually just extreme circumstances! But this time I couldn't even stop the tears from falling.
My dear friend, Brin Enterkin, had a vision of the African SOUP when we were sophomores in college which I never thought I'd actually get to see in person years down the track. Yet, the good Lord allowed the Jonah and I that very opportunity to go and see with our own eyes the amazing and inspiring creation of The African SOUP school.
Alongside her co-founder, Michael Kaidhiwa, Brin cast the vision of the African SOUP and then, with God, they built what the SOUP is now from the ground up, literally. I had heard the stories and seen the pictures of what the SOUP was transforming to be, but never in my mind could I really envision what the SOUP had become. Now having gone and set my feet on Ugandan soil, placed my hands on the walls of the SOUP school, and laid my eyes on the determined faces of the SOUP pupils, I can officially say that it is more amazing than photos, facebook, and even videos can show.
Even the words I write here don't do the SOUP justice, but I pray that the video I have created does. So, after two weeks spent laboring in Uganda here is one of the videos I created for them to show folks everywhere how The African SOUP is daily impacting lives through love.
March 1st, 2016. I never thought Jonah and I would see this day coming. I never thought I'd live out dreams such as this. I never thought God would allow us to go and live out the talking we had done just a year ago.
For those of you who don't know my husband, he's a BIG dreamer. I had a vision right before we got engaged of big, vibrantly colored balloons tied by strong cords to an anchor, and the anchor was sitting upright as if it were on the fringe of floating away. The balloons personified Jonah and his out of the ordinary visions, while the anchor represented my realistic tendencies and grounded nature. The cord symbolized Jesus; that strong material that tethers us together. Jonah's dreams help keep me upright and looking beyond what is front of me while my anchor keeps him from floating away to a fictitious world where nothing tangible or real usually happens. Together, bound and tied by Christ, we make an amazing team that complements each others' strengths and weaknesses. I help bring his dreams to life by putting action to his words while he encourages and leads me to crazy ideas and unconventional paths far beyond your neighborhood sidewalks and the 9-5 way of life. I'm SO thankful for this!
Together, with the sky-bound balloons, connecting heavenly cord, and weighted anchor, the dream of going to Uganda to film a non-profit called The African SOUP is coming to life!! I am just floored with the opportunity. Jonah and I, yes, not just Jonah on this one, have dreamed of taking videography beyond the world of weddings (don't get me wrong, weddings are great!) by utilizing our giftings and resources to help the needs of others. Here we are looking down the barrel of that VERY thing! So, from March 1-17 we'll be in Uganda filming The African SOUP to capture how they are positively changing the lives of others in so many different ways. Incredible, right?!
About a year ago, we both strongly agreed that we didn't want to put a price tag on the films we would make that would in turn promote awareness for those individuals and organizations we so strongly believe in. We realized this would be tough and challenge our trust in God to provide, but welcomed it all whole heartedly. Confession: Jonah and I aren't millionaires (dun, dun, dunnnn), but that's what has made this dream grow deep roots of financial faith. For this reason as well we decided that instead of writing support letters we would make a video (the one at the top of this blog post) to connect the people to where our hearts are and what the need is. We sincerely welcome all the help we can get. IF you want/feel lead to give, please don't hesitate my friends!
Are we nervous? Heavens yes! Are we the MOST qualified individuals to go? Probably not. Do we have the heart, passion, belief in the cause and confidence that we can do this? As my husband would say: "You better believe it!!" And now, God is paving the way for us live out this dream and serve people through our talents, and to that we say: "YES! Send us, we will go!"
Simply, help us go put "motion behind ministry."
DONATE HERE: purecharity.com/kiersten-and-jonah-williams-mission
Thank you! Love, Kiersten + Jonah.
"don't let your dreams sit on the sidelines."
When I was on the World Race the second country I visited was Swaziland. My squad and I stayed at an orphanage, El Shaddai, on a beautiful mountain top, secluded from everything. Those orphans stole my heart, so of course I have to share them with you!
The kids stories are jaw dropping and gut wrenching, and El Shaddai provided a haven for them amidst a broken world. I am so thankful to have met those kids, to have loved those kids, and to have seen with my own two eyes how beauty can come from brokenness.
Below is the video I made from when I was there, forgive the quality, old camera, old system!
Consider partnering with El Shaddai, with their mission of giving orphaned children an actual home, education, and a chance. Help put the motion behind their ministry! Below is the link to their website.