Apollo 13 is not the story of a super hero but the story of how normal people (okay some are very nerdy people) become heroes. It is an inspiring display of ingenuity, perseverance, sweat, and cooperation. The Apollo 13 story is a witness to how the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. Personally, well executed team work gets me more excited than the solo performance of experts. Maybe that is why I like being part of teams so much…and why Operation Mercy has had many good experiences with team work.

In Operation Mercy we consider ourselves a community of purpose-driven learners. While we need to be skilled and competent at what we do, the reality is that development work is not about experts solve other peoples’ problems. We aspire to continually grow in our competence to facilitate, mentor and help locals people find local solutions to local problems with local resources. It normally takes years of living, working, laughing and crying with the people we serve before fundamental changes begin to happen. Sometimes I think that our greatest asset is stubbornness…working in teams not only helps our performance… it helps us hang-in-there when we ourselves are low in hope or discouraged.

In spite of the excellent project we do, sometimes I think the greatest intervention we bring is a little hope and a little kindness to those in need. I am reminded of an ancient proverb, which says: “He who oppresses the poor shows contempt for their Maker, but whoever is kind to the needy honour God.” In Operation Mercy we seek to honour God in the way we treat those in need. I like being part of this team.