Kristi Kratzer recently held a yard sale to raise money for Mocha Club. Here, in her own words, she explains why….
The neighborhood I live in has a community wide yard sale twice a year and it’s a big deal for the local area. I had some stuff that I was planning to sell and a coworker had given me some things to sell, too. In the weeks leading up to the yard sale, I really started to feel that I shouldn’t keep the money that I made. I went to Ethiopia with Mocha Club this past winter and ever since I’ve had trouble forgetting what I saw there (and I am SO THANKFUL that I haven’t been able to forget!).
Going to Africa opened my eyes to a whole world that I had only read about or seen in movies, but it became a reality to me. So as I started to gather items to sell for my yard sale and began thinking about the money that I would make, I realized how greedy and selfish it would be for me to keep that money. Certainly, I wanted to keep the money I made at the yard sale…I mean who doesn’t like a little extra cash? But then I thought about what I would end up using the money for, probably to buy more things that I don’t need. And I thought about Mocha Club and how just $7 can go so far and positively affect so many people. I had to give the money away; it’s my way of not forgetting about the faces of the children I saw in Ambo or the women I spent time with in Nazaret. It seemed like an easy way to stay connected.
I also knew that it would be an opportunity to share with others about the needs in Africa. I set up my small tv on a table and played a video I had made of my trip to Ethiopia. I also made posters and some handouts with the Mocha Club website listed on them. And then I just prayed that God would open opportunities for conversations. I had a couple of really cool conversations with a handful of people in which I got to tell them about my experience in Ethiopia and explain Mocha Club to them.
I think the coolest part, though, was seeing the generosity of people. At one point during the morning, a woman came up to me to buy a picture I was selling. I had the picture marked at $5 and she handed me a $20. As I was searching for change she told me just to keep the change. I think I almost started crying right then. At one point, a man walked up and gave me $10 and took a cookie I had baked. I went to get him change because I was selling the cookies for 50 cents and he told me just to keep it. Other people donated a dollar or two without even buying anything from my sale. A few told me stories about how they had read about the need for clean water in Africa or how they were sponsoring a child in Africa.
I’ve been thinking and praying for ways to be more involved with change in Africa. I don’t want my trip there to be something that happened where the memories slowly fade. Brooke Fraser has a line in her song “Albertine” where she sings “Now that I have seen, I am responsible. Faith without deeds is dead.” I think about that all of the time. I feel a huge responsibility for the people in Africa…especially now that I’ve seen for myself. I don’t know how that will continue to work itself out in my life, but I know that little opportunities like this matter, and that something as small as having a yard sale to raise money for the people of Africa is a way to respond to Christ’s call to care for the poor and oppressed.
Thank you, Kristi.
Now we’d love to hear from you in the comments —
How have you made change to make a change in Africa?
How can you make change to make a change in Africa?
Share your ideas and let’s continue to make a huge impact on the continent of Africa!