“The things we do for ourselves are gone when we are gone; but the things we do for others are eternal and remain as our legacy.” –Orrin Woodward
The question has never been, if you know somebody that’s hurting–because the world around us is always going to be full of hurting people. The real question is if those who are hurting are part of any kind of community that is able to help them through the hurt. Thankfully, Life Leadership–as a company–has committed to help people Have Fun, Make Money, AND Make a Difference. While the mission is “corporate” in nature, it’s inspiring to watch as people get involved and catch the vision to make a difference in others’ lives.
If you’ve been following this blog, you know that Life Leadership supports two main outreaches: All Grace Outreach (AGO) and the Life on Life Initiative. While the focus lately has been on the launch of the Life on Life Initiative, AGO has been consistently helping those in need in the background. Today, we’d like to share about a young lady and her family that got the support that they needed when their world turned upside down. Here is a quick summary to help you grasp some of what happened:
Cindy Yoder’s life is an amazing story of trials and overcoming. She was married previously and had three amazing children–Dominic, Mia, and Dimitri. With that marriage came a lot of abuse, both verbal and physical. This eventually ended when the children witnessed their father physically abuse Cindy, set the house on fire and leave her for dead.
This left many emotional scars on Cindy and her children’s hearts, but Cindy vowed to be an overcomer by raising her kids on her own. She worked hard at being self-employed, but seemed limited by time and the pull of being a full-time mother.
Enter Johnny Yoder. He had a tough path of growing up in rural Ohio and had some trouble with the law. Life changed for Johnny when the Lord convicted his heart and he began to strive to change things in his life. His talk was different and his walk was different. Cindy and Johnny met through Life Leadership with the goal to impact and transform lives, including their own. After hesitation due to their past, they got married in 2013 and realized they both had received what they wanted. Johnny was blessed with a loving wife to share his adventures and a way to give hope and grace to each other and those around them. Cindy was blessed with a stable, Christian man to share her love with and be a guide to her two sons and daughter.
They started traveling telling their story and Johnny became the main source of income, allowing Cindy to stay at home with the children. The roughness of two pasts would continually creep up, but they endured and became a stronger couple each time. God gave them a pregnancy of a baby girl due April 2015. Amazing! Johnny’s 1st child! There was a great future ahead.
On March 7, 2015, Johnny had just left their personal bible study with Cindy on John 14. Their personal vehicle had broken down for the last time, and Johnny had been studying which vehicle would be the safest for the new baby. He found what they were looking for and set up an appointment for 10:30 AM to see it. On his way to the appointment, Johnny rounded a corner and an SUV crossed the center line and struck his vehicle. Tragically, Johnny lost his life at the scene.
Hopes, dreams and a future with his family were instantly shattered. Cindy’s question was not “Why God?” it was “How can I make it?” Cindy was left at 8 1/2 months pregnant & no income. The expense of the funeral and the bereavement process was tremendous. Cindy was left to once again pick herself up and try to put the pieces of her shattered life back together.
-Friends of the Family
It’s hard to imagine the devastation that such a sudden accident at such a crucial time can be, but Cindy was not alone. As mentioned above, she had met Johnny through Life Leadership; and because of the tremendous community that surrounded them–and the leadership that they were following–help and support was immediately available. Not only were her teammates able to assist with daily tasks and obligations, but the leaders of the community that Cindy is a part of took it one big step further. After some discussion with the AGO Board of Directors, a fund was set up and AGO agreed to match whatever the community could raise to support the Yoder family.
“Every donation to All Grace Outreach is used to better the lives of those who need hope, help and spiritual guidance. Your gift will help a child’s growth and well-being, and aid families across the world. Together, we can make a difference.” -Introduction to All Grace Outreach
In the few weeks after the fund was announced, almost $24,000 were donated by an incredible support team of family, friends, acquaintances and even Life Leadership Founders and Members that had never met this young couple. As promised, AGO matched this amount and donated another $24,000 toward the rebuilding of the lives of this determined woman and her children. Along with the financial blessing, Cindy soon thereafter gave birth to a beautiful baby girl and named her Jonnie Rose–in memory of her Daddy.
“After my husband was killed, I was absolutely beside myself. I was 8 months pregnant with 3 children and a disabled widowed mother in my care. I had been on-and-off of bed rest during the pregnancy, and therefore had not been working. Johnny and I had been utilizing the principles of the Financial Fitness Program, but we were not yet completely free of debt. In one horrible day, my world was turned upside down and my life was on the verge of ruins. Not only did I just lose my husband–I could possibly lose everything for which we had worked so hard. If employment didn’t come fast enough, my entire family could be without utilities and homeless. My fears mounted…Who would hire someone 8 1/2 months pregnant?! The response and support that I got from the Life Leadership Community and AGO was unbelievable!! Through the servant leadership of the Life Leadership community and All Grace Outreach, I received not only the ability to maintain my finances during this difficult period in my life–but a renewed faith and hope. The Life Leadership community and AGO are truly blessings to my family.” -Cindy Yoder
All Grace Outreach is a 501(c)3 charitable organization, which means all contributions are tax deductible. Stories like that of Cindy Yoder’s family are experienced multiple times every day, and it is AGO’s mission to find and help those in need while spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ. Throughout the Bible, a recurring theme is one that Chris Brady repeats often: “We are blessed to be a blessing.” If this story has touched your heart, and you’d like to be a blessing in someone else’s life; please consider donating to AGO by clicking here or copying this link into your browser: www.allgraceoutreach.com/Donate.
On behalf of Life Leadership, we commend every individual who took part in–and continues to take part in–the quest to help Cindy’s family get back on their feet. When a person helps another person, the blessing doesn’t just stay with the receiver. We know that the ripple effect from one act of kindness lasts for generations to come.