Sunday, May 29, 2016

And the Winner Is...?

My speech teacher once told my class, "Never begin with apologies. Never! Just act like the mistake was supposed to happen." In keeping with her advice (since I ALWAYS listened to the advice of my teachers, Ha!), I will not begin this blog with an apology for trying the patience of my readers and causing them to doubt my sincerity by taking so long to announce the winner of my contest. I will not offer excuses about how so much work has been thrown into my path that as I slogged though it I could only glance longingly at my blog and wish I was there instead. I will not give you a list of reasons why, although totally unknown to me, and I'm sure to you as well, I have not had the chance to get on here and publish the results of our recent fundraising sweepstakes. I will not!

I will simply tell you who won.

Easy enough. But since I have never drawn a winner and was not quite sure how to begin, I improvised.

I wrote each name on a notecard - one card for each five dollar donation. Those who donated $30 received six entries. Those who donated $50 received ten entries. And so on.

I folded each notecard into teeny, tiny wads, threw those wads into a jar, and shook it up really well. I pulled out five random crumpled cards and tossed the remaining cards into the trash bin. I put the five notecards into the now empty jar and shook it again. This time I randomly pulled out three and, again, threw away the remainder. The hand-plucked three went back into the jar to be shaken one last time.

But before I pulled out that winning name, I stopped for a moment and offered up a silent prayer and asked God to pick the winner. This fundraising walk-of-faith has been led by Him all along and I wanted it to be finished by Him as well.

When I breathed "Amen,"

I tipped the jar upside down one last time...

And caught the first crumpled paper wad to land in my hand.

I unfolded it...

And read ...

The name...


(Congratulations! Good thing I will be seeing you this weekend and can hand-deliver it to you!)

Thank you to everyone who prayed and participated and, with God, took us over and beyond the original financial goal we had set our sights on. This has been an amazing, faith-building experience. I am so thankful to have been able to walk this journey with friends.

P.S. I still plan to tell the "rest of the story" about this fundraiser ... just as soon as I get a chance. It is amazing and made my head spin. I promise, it will be well worth the wait!