Amy Weiss starts college this fall in hopes of learning to write the world a better place.
“Words, both written and spoken, have always been powerful to me. I still have notebooks from elementary school filled with notes, doodles, and short stories (and some poems about horses). I love expressing creativity in different ways, so one day I ordered a set of letter stamps, some supplies, and started making... I wasn't sure where I'd end up, but I'm glad it brought me here!”
Here is the Sparrow & Lilly Shop, an Etsy store with goodwill hanging from the necklace chains. Amy uses letter stamps to pound out wearable messages of hope and also upcycles old jewelry into new pieces of beauty. The sale of these items catalyzes her dreams: a college education and mission trips to a South Dakota reservation.
What makes someone on the cusp of her future pause to wield her hands in pursuit of peace and love? This sense of purpose took root early in Amy’s life.
“When I was in fifth grade, my family lived in China for about a year. Living in another country changed my worldview and opened my eyes to a bigger picture, even though I may not have realized it at the time. I saw that even with striking differences, people essentially want and need the same things. It’s humbling and exciting to be part of something larger than yourself, whether it's in South Dakota, Asia, the Middle East, or your hometown.”
Amy’s understanding of the interconnectedness of people and her desire to bridge the gaps that exist between us mirrors our own desire here at PLC, but without the exquisite narration of Ann Voskamp, Amy may never have realized our shared vision.
“Most of the reports we hear from the Middle East tend to be depressing and heartbreaking. The stories I heard from Preemptive Love Coalition [via Ann’s blog] weren't falsely optimistic, but real. They conveyed one thing that seemed to be lacking: hope. Striving for peace and love in a region feared by many people is brave (and hopeful). As a student myself, I was excited about PLC's mission to help displaced kids return to school.”
After reading these stories, Amy did not wait for a higher education or more money before deciding to act. Her hands got to work. She decided to create a necklace that would express our common credo. A small rectangular piece of metal, four letters, one profound concept: Love. With every purchase of this necklace, Amy is donating 70% of the proceeds to PLC.
“It's my hope that this simple piece of jewelry reminds those who wear it of Preemptive Love's message and mission. It'd be wonderful if these necklaces start conversations, introduce more people to Preemptive Love, call people to action, and inspire them to love.”
We hope so too, Amy! Thank you for your creative initiative on behalf of the children of Iraq.