The reasons for choosing a new name for our organization and undergoing a full ‘rebranding’ haven’t changed since this post from late 2012. But you might be wondering, “Why Discovering Light?” Why no reference to water, or any of our initiatives? Why nothing about Africa or more specifically, Ethiopia?
The answer to the last question is simple: Who knows where God may direct us next? We may find ourselves serving in Cambodia or Indonesia. If so, an Africa name could create unnecessary challenges.
Water? With AWL we tried the tagline “because water alone is not enough’ to explain our multi-initiative approach and open the dialogue to what kind of help will really impact our friends in Ethiopia. But a key component for us was recognizing how important a change in mindset and worldview is to the development process.
How do you tell people (‘market’) your primary goal is a metaphysical transformation that truly can look different for every person, family, and community? With the help of some good friends and great talent at Collaboration Reverberation, after long deliberation (months!) we arrived at Discovering Light. No company is ultimately defined by their name. We are known by who we are, what we stand for. We have come to see the abundant life Jesus promises in John 10:10 is available to everyone, everywhere, and it is meant for our time on earth, not just eternity. When people see how great God is, how he made each person with tremendous worth and potential, and that his abundant life is to be experienced in every sphere: personal, family, community, business, government, education, the arts; it is like discovering light.
This discovery is the experience of a new worldview that turns hopelessness of generational poverty into hopefulness of anticipated prosperity. The turning from a “we’ve always done it this way” mindset into an explosion of creativity revealing new solutions to old problems. The breaking of historical and cultural barriers that turn isolation into community. Replacing the fear of separation from God with the security of his love in Christ. When God’s truth and ways enter in like this, what once was darkness now becomes light.
Our passion is helping people groups embrace God’s design for abundant life. Currently our emphasis is working among our friends, the Arsi Oromo people, of South Central Ethiopia. Through our partnerships with wonderful Ethiopian nationals and the village-based initiatives, we hope they will discover light.