Collaboration ~ The LOV Foundation in Costa Rica

Find where God is working and meet Him there.

~Henry Blackaby
 
Sunday evening we gathered with twenty woman to hear Nicol Epple, the founder of the The LOV Foundation, share her passion to care for at-risk and exploited women.
 
 
The women were brought together by Martha Mason, who welcomed them by reading this quote: 
 
If you want to make a difference with people, 
you just need to find like-minded people 
who share a common goal for doing something significant.
You just need to want to make a difference together.
~John Maxwell
 


  Martha shared how she’d found encouragement in her own dreams and endeavors when attending Winsome two years ago. This year Martha heard Nicol speak at Winsome and contacted her soon after, expressing her desire to support The LOV Foundation. Nicol promptly invited her to “Come to Costa Rica with me!” Martha was surprised at Nicol’s invitation, but she said yes!

 
On Sunday, Nicol discussed the sobering statistics of sexual abuse and all its snowball effects . . . addiction, poverty, dysfunction, isolation, broken lives. The LOV Foundation will be opening a home in Pennsylvania to care for women like these in October. 
 
So why in the world are we in Costa Rica? You can read this post for more details, but the short answer is . . . collaboration.
 
Nicol and I met via the internet years ago. Two years ago, I met Amy Breitmann who works for ViBella and has partnered with Winsome the last two years. Last year, I introduced Nicol to Amy, and Amy introduced Nicol to Colleen Mitchell. Colleen invited Nicol to come to Costa Rica and work with the women she and her family serve at the St. Francis Emmaus Center.
 
That’s the short version. The connections form a beautiful tapestry that is almost too complicated to follow. It’s amazing how likes, friends, and posts on social media outlets can grow into kingdom work! <<< tweet this
 
We arrived in Costa Rica Monday afternoon and were greeted by Colleen and her son. 
 
 
As we made the two hour journey from the capital city to their mountain home, Colleen shared the story of how her family came to this mission. The windy, two-lane mountain roads, twisted and turned and went up and down as if in synchrony.
 
Colleen’s beautiful story is unique, but like most God-sized dreams, it contains some common threads . . . a dream born of struggle and pain, unexpected paths, and a mission way bigger than a single person. Collaboration isn’t a nice idea; it’s a necessity! <<< tweet this
 
Today, we gathered with another group of women. While many of the women we met Sunday evening were strangers, the diversity amongst this group is more significant—a different culture, different lifestyles, and most challenging, a different language.
 

Seated around tables, Nicol explained in broken Spanish what we’d be doing as we began our collaboration. It was a slow start, but the woman caught on quickly. And quickly surpassed us with all their skills!

 
 After lunch, Nicol shared how despite our different backgrounds, we are sisters in Christ and that is more than enough for friendship and collaboration.


 It’s said when you put two draft horses side by side, they can actually pull not double but more than three times what each could pull individually. Even so, the exponential effect of collaboration goes beyond production.


 To collaborate is to co-labor. Every woman brings unique strengths as well as weaknesses. Together each individual is strengthened and stretched as our hearts and minds are enlarged.

 

Are you wondering where God might be leading you? Find where He is working and meet Him there.

Chances are you’ll find some sisters too.

 
Follow the rest of our trip on social media with the hashtag #LOVcostarica

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