Streams in the Desert: A Mid-Year E91 Foundation Update
“. . . In the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert” (Isaiah 35:6)
“Great pressure means great power!” Among daily devotional Christian classics, perhaps one of the best known is Streams in the Desert. First released in 1925, it features the spiritual inspiration that helped sustain Mrs. Charles E. Cowman during her years of missionary work in Japan and China. Nearly 100 years later, her reflections are still relevant today: “In the pathway of faith, we come to learn that the Lord’s thoughts are not our thoughts, nor His ways our ways. Both in the physical and spiritual realm, great pressure means great power!”
Great pressure aptly describes the current COVID-19 crisis conditions we all have been struggling to endure and navigate during what continues to be unprecedented times. So, what is the great power that may be derived from this worldwide pandemic? Since the onset of COVID-19 in the United States, we have witnessed the great power of God – by His grace — allowing E91 Foundation to continue to carry out its original objective of “fulfilling Christ’s directives set forth in Matthew 28:18-20 to go into the world teaching, making disciples, and Matthew 25:35-40 – to meet the physical needs of hurting people.”
This past March, for example — upon very short notice — the E91 Foundation partnered 50-50 with East 91st Street Christian Church to provide $7,000 to purchase KN95 masks for area hospitals in a collective project with some 20 Indianapolis-area churches. As a group, the churches pledged money to buy 200,000 masks. The initial batch of masks was distributed during the first week of April! E91’s pledge was for $7,000 to purchase 5,000 masks. “This opportunity popped up quite unexpectedly,” wrote E91’s Adrian Fehl, executive pastor and staff representative on the E91 Foundation board, “but it’s giving us all a real chance to show unity within the Body of Christ.”
Similarly — on April 30th — the E91 Foundation provided a $5,000 grant to Shepherd Community Center to help Shepherd “meet families’ immediate needs during the pandemic.” Jay Height, Shepherd’s executive director, wrote: “For 35 years, Shepherd Community has faithfully worked to achieve its mission of breaking the cycle of poverty on the Near Eastside of Indianapolis. Through our multitude of programs aimed at providing a Continuum of Care, we have diligently undertaken a calling to fill our neighborhood with help and hope. The COVID-19 pandemic has hit our neighbors hard, and we’d appreciate your support in meeting their basic needs.” E91 Foundation’s grant specifically was earmarked for providing food relief — “mitigating the extreme circumstances caused by COVID-19 and ensuring families have access to food. . . .”
So far — in just the first six months of 2020 — E91 Foundation has awarded grants totaling more than $70,000. During 2019 — its 25th Anniversary — the Foundation awarded grants totaling $116,381. And, since its founding, E91 Foundation has granted nearly $1.5 million to evangelical nonprofit ministries in Indianapolis and throughout the world. The generosity of our donors makes it all possible!
Incorporated in 1994, East 91st Street Christian Church started the E91 Foundation as a long-term Christian charitable entity separate from the church’s day-to-day business and budget. The Foundation was formed to provide members and friends with an opportunity to leave a long-lasting legacy of Christian service and missions through bequests, memorials, and gifts. The Foundation adheres to Christian beliefs and principles and provides a vehicle for the broader Christian community to remember Christ and give a portion of their family’s final assets or unexpected proceeds back to God.
We invite you to prayerfully consider partnering with us by donating to the E91 Foundation. While a board maintains the endowment and grants funds to qualifying entities, donors can make contributions for specific purposes or create an endowed fund. The board then uses the interest each year within the donor’s guidelines to fund missions and ministries.
If you’re interested in making a one-time donation to the E91 Foundation, we can accept cash, check, or donation via PayPal. If a check, please make it payable to “East 91st Street Christian Church Foundation.” Checks or cash may be sent via regular mail to: East 91st Street Christian Church Foundation, 6049 E. 91st Street, Indianapolis, IN 46250. You may also make a one-time donation or a legacy memorial gift via PayPal on our Donation Page. Any E91 Foundation board member is also able to accept donations, answer questions, or help you through the process, or you can visit our Contact Page to get more information or to contact us to help expand God’s kingdom.
Later this year, E91 Foundation and E91 church – in conjunction with Christian Financial Resources (CFR) – plan to co-host a “Will/Trust Seminar” at E91. Please consider joining us and watch for more details as they become available.
“All our supply is to come from the Lord,” reads the January 1 Streams in the Desert devotional entry. “Here are springs that shall never dry; here are fountains and streams that shall never be cut off. Here, anxious one, is the gracious pledge of the Heavenly Father. If He be the Source of our mercies they can never fail us. No heat, no drought can parch that river, ‘the streams whereof make glad the city of God.’”
And Isaiah 43:19: “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”
Great pressure, indeed, means great power!
Blair and Beth Austin
“Excel in the Grace of Giving” (2 Corinthians 8:7)