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September 4, 2017

Each One, Reach One

While on the plane to Chicago last week I read various Twitter posts about JJ Watt and other high profile celebrities and billionaires donating millions of dollars to the hurricane relief effort in Houston. I wondered what I could do that would make a difference. I had already donated to the Red Cross, Samaritan Purse and Convoy of Hope but I wanted to do more to be a multiplier.
After checking in to the hotel, I took a night time walk along Michigan Avenue and came across a group of college aged students sitting on the sidewalk in a circle around a homeless guy who was speaking to them as they hung on every word.

Jeff from ChicagoI kept walking but after a few minutes something made me stop in my tracks. I keep feeling I had to go back and talk to him. I approached the group, said hello and found out the man's name was Jeff. He was sitting with a group of Moody Bible students. They said they visit him every Tuesday and he shares his wisdom with them. Jeff asked me to sit down. I did and he continued his story of how he was a Carpenter for 19 years. Carpenter! I wrote a book called The Carpenter. I knew this meeting was not an accident.

I asked Jeff where he sleeps at night. He said he sleep outside. "What about when it gets cold," I asked? "I just bundle up in my favorite spot by a church," he answered. I asked Jeff if he had a place to stay inside at night would he sleep inside? He said he would like that but at shelters the young homeless steal his things.

I asked if I could share this picture. He said yes. I want to help Jeff. So if you live in Chicago and recognize Jeff let's help him together. He's on Pearson and Michigan every Tuesday. Connect with me if you do. I would love to find him a place to stay. My friend Ron Hall, who has a movie coming out based on his incredible book, Same Kind of Different as Me, has a goal and it's for every church in America to adopt one homeless person. Ideally I will find a church that would take Jeff in and adopt him.

The next day as I sat on the plane on my way home to Florida I remembered Andy Stanley’s powerful words, "Do for one what you wish you could do for everyone," and realized that in my desire to help Jeff in Chicago I found a way I can be a multiplier for the people in Houston.
I decided to support one family (husband and wife are teachers) who lost their home in Houston and my goal is to encourage everyone to sponsor one person or one family. We can't help everyone but we can all help someone! I can’t do much alone but together we can do a lot.


STEP 1: Go to this post on my Facebook Page

STEP 2: If you or someone you know needs help, money, clothes, support etc., list it in the comments of that post. If you have a GoFundMe page you can post that link too. Feel free to include any helpful information that will help validate the need for others.

STEP 3: If you want to help someone, look at the comments of that post from people who are in need and reply to them and contribute to them.

My goal is that this will serve as a matching opportunity and connect people in need with people who want to contribute. People will help people. Families will help families. Organizations will get involved. Digital connections will lead to human connections. Every post in need will be met with at least one person or organization (business, school, church, team) who will help support them in some way.

Each one of us will reach one of us. Together we will change the world one person at a time.

- Jon


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