I’ve always loved the song reminding us, “This land is your land, this land is my land….” I am fortunate to be able to say my travels over the years have taken me to all fifty states. Yes, I believe this is all my land.
As a member of a Texas Jones family, our summer vacations were spent on long road trips out west. We regularly visited seven states stretching northwesterly from Texas and finally due west to the Pacific.
Later, on a honeymoon road trip that took Elliott and me northeasterly to Niagara Falls and then homeward on a southern route, I added a whole chunk of states new to me. As children’s minister assisting youth on various church mission trips, I added many more, and it was working at national WMU and traveling the whole country that almost finished out my personal visits to all the fifty states. A first retirement road trip due north added the two final states, the Dakotas. Happy fifty for me!
However, this land is not just the geographical land encompassing my travels. This land is WMU Land. I know real people in all fifty states, and many of them I have met through WMU. Most of them don’t even know I hold them in my heart and keep them on my mind.
My love for the land and my love for WMU are the reasons I am such an advocate for the WMU Foundation’s Touch Tomorrow Today (TTT) endowments. Each state or region has its own TTT endowment. Monies given to each state WMU organization supports their purpose and mission to make disciples who make disciples. I know these dedicated leaders, and I know their lives are spent today focusing on changed lives for tomorrow. Everything they do matters.
Because of my appreciation for the WMU Foundation’s efforts to help all the states of my land and with my own knowledge of and love for those states, I am setting new personal financial goals to put my money where my heart is. My dream is to make a contribution to every state Touch Tomorrow Today fund. Foundation President David George always says, “No gift is too small.” I like that, because that means any amount of money I am able to send can make a difference.
I admit to sometimes making a game of donating. What if I give my milestone “age” this year to a state fund? What if I give my birth’s day number (for example, my birthday is December 29, so I could give $29 or even $12 plus $29!)? Or give an amount to any states I’ve lived in? The sky’s the limit!
God is good, and I am grateful. Someone once said, “Gratitude unlocks the doors to generosity.” I have found no better way to express my gratitude.
Visit wmufoundation.com/touch-tomorrow-today to learn more or to give today.
By Sylvia DeLoach, national WMU retiree and current WMU Foundation board member.