Creative Giving

(from Eric)

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, this is another sort of a tribute post.  (Other examples here and here)  Our goal on this blog is to describe, as realistically and holistically as possible, our lives and work.  An extremely real facet of this is the countless people who support us in countless ways.  They make this happen, and they inspire us and blow us away.  Many of you reading this are among those.

"Creative Giving"

What I mean is people who have supported and encouraged us in ways that were outside the box, and in most cases, amplified the effect of their gift.  These Creative Givers always impress us in how thoughtful and wise they are in their gracious participation in our lives.  A few examples to ponder and demonstrate:

  • In 2009, before leaving for Kenya, a realtor friend who really believed in what we were doing volunteered to list and sell our house in Michigan, foregoing his commission and absorbing the listing cost.  In addition to monetary savings, this was an incredible encouragement to us in a difficult time.
  • Carlan's friend who is a professional photographer offered him a free photo session with free digital files to use for his prayer cards and such.  Now you know why he always looks so debonair.
  • A friend of the Cropsey's gave Jessica Lasik eye surgery, at a significant discount.  Not having to deal with eyeglasses and contacts while living in the African bush is a gift that cannot be overestimated.
  • Similarly, our dentist in Ypsilanti decided I needed a bite splint, which insurance usually doesn't cover. He had expressed interest in our work, especially given that his son is Peace Corps in northern Kenya.  When I expressed concern regarding the cost, he decided to absorb the cost himself.
  • (Did we mention that we love Pacific Rim?!)
  • And we also would mention the numerous people who have utilized their personal friendships and professional relationships to connect us to a larger circle of interested individuals.  Hosting dinners for us, introducing us to friends, sharing our stories even when we are not there.

As a bit of a center point of this, I wanted to tell our readership also about Will Lee.  Will and his wife Ellen are good friends from years at Knox Church in Ann Arbor.  He's a very sharp guy, an alum of one of the nation's top business schools, and a personal finance expert now based out of New York state. 

He called me up a couple of months ago to offer his services to any of our McCropder connections, with the proviso that he would be giving back a portion of his fees garnered from such clients back to our work and ministry.  The creativity of this is patent.  It can amplify his capacity for giving, as well as provide an opportunity for others to render support to us through utilizing his financial services.

If you're interested, you can contact him directly at 914.225.5491.  Or email him at will.b.lee@morganstanley.com.  He does full-spectrum personal finance management, with an emphasis on tax planning, retirement planning, and risk management.  He is licensed for any US state.

These are the examples from the top of our collective head after just a couple years of being in this work.  It's a blessing to us, and we thank you all.

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