So, I know there’s a lot of mean and ugly and horrible things on the internet.
But I will always be a girl that believes it can be and is being used for good and for glory.
One of the beautiful ways I’ve seen this happen time and time again is through Instagram. It’s pretty inspiring and miraculous to watch community rally together around other women in time of need or crisis.
Just this morning, I signed on and quickly noticed the same few photos showing up in my feed over and over again. Women across instagram sharing the story of a precious family and a great need.
The husband and father pictured above, Paul Coakley, went to be with the Lord just a few short weeks after an unexpected, aggressive cancer diagnosis. He leaves behind a pregnant wife, Ann, and their three other small kiddos. The family had recently begun renovations on their 100 year old farmhouse in Tennessee. They lived modestly and humbly and Paul had no life insurance plan.
These are the moments for the Church to rise and be the church. This is a little picture of beauty on the internet- that no matter where you live, you have the opportunity to love and support this mama as she picks up the pieces.
Earlier today, @thegraygang set out to do a flash-mob-style fundraiser, encouraging everyone to give $10 over the course of 10 hours.
This evening, she posted the results of that fundraiser:
“Even the smallest act of caring for another person is like a drop of water — it will make ripples throughout the entire pond.” ~Bryan Matteo Well…and ripple away we did, friends! Little by little, we traveled far. The toss of a tiny stone caught wind & created a tidal wave — because a whole lotta people, who care, said YES. In less than twenty-four hours, with the majority of donations being just a mere $10, we raised almost $5100 for Ann Coakley!!! Go ahead. You are allowed to cry now. I will be transferring the funds directly to her this evening so if you still want to give, please free feel. See my previous post for more details. For all those who gave, shared, prayed – the works – thank YOU. It isn’t what we say, think or even believe that defines us, but by what we DO that matters most. Actions are always the loudest of all. • And I want to say this (not to toot my own horn but because it is weighing on me): When God puts compassion in your heart for someone who is suffering, when you feel that pull to extend a hand to an individual who is hurting – please know this – you are being blessed with an golden opportunity to make a mark, a profound difference, in that person’s life. Take heed. Be open. Listen. Do not ignore it. Lean in. Learn to follow that voice. Use whatever platform you have. Make it count. And trust that you might have what they need…to pick up the broken pieces and keep going for another day. You never know how far your ripples may reach.
How beautiful is that, friends? While I am so terribly grieved for the Coakleys, my heart is joyful to see this mama’s needs being met, even in a small way. We know that amount will not be enough for her over the long haul, but God is the great Provider and I believe He will continue to sustain this family.
I hadn’t announced our February cause yet here, and I knew as soon as I read the story that there was a reason for it: this family was it. It will be a tiny drop in the bucket, but I’m praying God multiplies the loaves and fishes of our little shop donation for this precious family, like only He can.
So, at least 10% of shop sales this month will be given directly to sweet Ann and the kids.
If you’d like to give directly to the Coakley family, you can also do so right here.
Please continue to lift up Ann, the three kids, and the baby-to-be before the Lord. I’m praying they would sense Him near, know His peace that passes understanding, and believe His love is steady even in this dark hour.
Thank you for being a community that loves and gives well.
Let’s all #livelikePaul,