>Who saw Rent? If you didn’t watch this!

Seasons of Love – Rent

I made my first posting on August 7th 2009 but since the month of July is coming to an end I figured now was as good a time as any to celebrate my first year in the blogosphere.

Whenever I think about looking back over a previous year I remember this song. “How do you measure a year? In 525,600 moments so dear.”

First off I want to thank each and everyone one of you for following. It’s not easy to keep up with people on-line and committing to read the random thoughts of a perfect stranger every week is commendable. The time I spent reading your comments and researching your blogs, although not quite 525,600 minutes has been dear to me.

The comments I have received have been both encouraging and challenging. On more than one occasion I’ve been forced to take another look at certain issues and even changed my opinion once or twice. I’m glad this blog has opened up so much debate, that was my original intention and I hope you all continue to have as much fun with it as I have.

My friend Cary talks a lot about seasons. Whenever he tells a story about his past he will often say that such and such went on “for a season” until circumstances changed. When I started writing The Earworm I was embarking on a season of inquiry. I have a big heart and so much of what I see around me is painful to look at; poverty, injustice, war, oppression, just turn on the news or surf the internet for a few minutes and it can be overwhelming. For too long I had allowed myself to look away but the more a forced myself to stare it in the face the more impotent I began to feel towards it.

In the last year I have read 49 books on topics ranging from Economics and International Development to Politics and Theology, joined 23 blogs and attended a conference on international development. But I know I have barely scratched the surface. My book list continues to grow and is currently up to 74 more titles that I wish to read and as I continue to write I’m sure I will come into contact with several more bloggers. Although the inquiry will continue and I will still use this forum to flesh out my thoughts I am now preparing to move into a season of action.

Back in early November I wrote a post called Believer’s Trust. It was a rudimentary idea about a for-profit Micro-Finance bank. I have since changed my opinion about the for-profit aspect of things. Somehow making a profit on the backs of the World’s poor seems immoral. I also believe that there are certain things that micro-finance is ill-suited to provide, such as health care and education. And lastly I feel that an exclusive focus on developing economies half a world away is short sighted. A recent study showed that over 1000 people per month arrive in Canada and settle within a 20 mile radius of Pearson International Airport. As I sit here in my home office I can literally watch them land. Many end up living in poverty in the thousands of cheap apartments that dot the landscape all along the 400 series highways ringing Toronto. As a result they are my neighbours.

One of the things that became obvious to me during this season of inquiry is that I lack the education required to build a Micro-Finance bank. You’re never too old to learn but as I approach my 38th birthday I am too old to invest a lot of time in formal schooling. What I don’t lack is passion and an ability to sell ideas. Therefore Believer’s Trust will become a fund raising organization that will partner with existing NGOs already operating in areas of Health Care, Education and Micro-Finance both at home and around the world.

I’m in the process of writing a business plan and have opened a new page on this website that will detail how Believer’s Trust will function. Watch this space for more details and how you can become involved.

As I prepare to sign off, I’m reminded of the parable of the talents. (Matthew 25:14-28) God has given me a talent, entrusted me with the ability build business and sell ideas. I’ve used that talent all my life for my own personal gain now is the time to use it for His Kingdom.

Stay tuned!


  1. IanH says:

    >Lauren, I have enjoyed your postings and encourage you to continue. At 38, don't sell yourself short. You are never too old to learn, or get "educated". There are many ways to do it, including on-line internet courses. At 66 I still surprise myself at what is out there waiting to be learned! I look forward to seeing your new project!

  2. Ryan says:

    >Good luck to you! there will always be some kind of obstacle, but it takes a strong will to power through. God bless!

  3. kippen64 says:

    >38 is not old. I am 46 and about to dedicate the next 10-15 (maybe even 20) years to the next stage of my life. It would be so sad if at the age of 50, you looked back and found yourself thinking that 38 wasn't so old after all, and that maybe you should have done some of the things that you wanted to. I was once told of a man who decided at the age of 35 to become a doctor and went ahead and did it. That's only 3 years younger than you.

  4. >Hi Lauren:I found it interesting when you wrote, "Somehow making a profit on the backs of the World’s poor seems immoral."How immoral? Why immoral? Only on the backs of "the poor"? How poor? Starving to death poor? Merely miserably poor? I was happy to read what you said about that. Looks to me like you are on the slippery slope to liberalism, LOL. At least you may be going the right direction. Why are excessive profits made "on the backs of" the working class any better (or any less bad) than the "usury" that the bible admonishes against? For that matter, I am wondering whether you think the government is out of line by regulating excessive interest and requiring honesty in reporting true costs of loans? The O.T. prophets certainly didn't hesitate at such regulation, to the point of prohibiting lending at interest. However, by the time of Jesus, lending for profit was so prevalent that Jesus seemingly took it for granted in one of his parables, the one of the talents. The main character in the parable was punished for not investing his money to collect the interest collecting usury!Hmmm, sounds like something culturally relative is going on in that instance. Might one go so far as to call it "situational ethics"?OK, a little food for thought, you old liberal you.Cheers … Frank "Hank" Lockwood

  5. Lauren Sheil says:

    >Hey FrankI really don't have a whole lot to say to that, other than that labels, like liberal or conservative don't mean much to me. I just try to do what I think is right and perhaps situational (or motivational) ethics aren't a bad thing.

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