"Pure and lasting religion in the sight of God our Father means that we MUST CARE..."
In 2013, I read the book Half Time by Bob Buford. The book created in me a strong desire to transition from a life of success to a life of significance. I read the book and set it aside, but knew deep down that I wanted to do just that. At about the same time, someone gave me the book A Hole in Our Gospel by Richard Stearns. It helped me to embrace the question, “What does God expect of me?”
In 2015, my wife (Kristine) and I went through a course which helped me to define my life vision. After clarifying this, I immediately began writing a business plan for a nonprofit dedicated to fatherless boys. I finalized a plan in the spring of 2016. At the time, I didn’t know where we would do this, or when we would do this, but I know without a doubt that we would. My plan had a bunch of TBDs throughout, but I started dreaming of the day we could do this.
In the Spring of 2018, I dusted off the document, and after a lot of thinking and praying, God made it abundantly clear that it was time. I started engaging my network, created a starter board of directors, and filed with the state of Texas. A lot has transpired since then, and we received our 501(c)(3) status as of May 9, 2018. We’ve also had a committed team praying for our nonprofit since May.
I really didn’t know what I was doing, and I’m still learning, didn’t know how or where to start, but I started online by researching nonprofits. I wanted to make sure that this need really exists in Frisco, and that no other organization was specifically targeting this need. I quickly made time to meet with Frisco Family Services (our local social services agency), the principal at one of our local elementary schools, a Frisco city councilman, and our pastor, who also connected me with two other nonprofits in our area founded by other church members. In short, I learned that the need exists more than I can imagine, and it is not being met.
Our mission comes from Psalm 68:5 – To be “a father to the fatherless”. To fulfill our mission, we have started a one-on-one mentoring program within our local school, during school hours. Additionally, we are starting an after-school program which will be a group mentoring program, allowing us to work with a larger group of boys at a time. This will either be on school properties, or in a central location in Frisco.
So why am I doing this – why me? Well, in short, and my father wasn’t in my life from the age of 13 to 30. (My original plan was to name the organization 13to30.) Fortunately for me, my father and I have a good relationship today (he’s been on our prayer team since we started), but I know the impact in my life of missing that relationship for so long. I have long had a passion to help other boys in similar and worse situations. Every boy needs that active, positive, male role-model in his life. The statistics are staggering when a dad is missing – from violence, to crime, to substance abuse, to high school dropout rates, to suicide. The list goes on. It’s not right, and I was called to do something about it.
I decided that we needed a name that better reflected what we will do. While reading my Bible one morning, I was led once again to the first chapter of the book of James (my favorite book and the origin of our son's middle name). Before our son was born, I had memorized this chapter, and a framed copy has hung on his wall since the day he was born. In James 1:27 (NLT), we learn, “Pure and lasting religion, in the sight of God our Father means that we MUST CARE for orphans and widows in the troubles, and refuse to let the world corrupt us.” I knew then, that was our name.
What do we need? As a new organization, we really need your prayers so that we can fulfill our mission and lead this organization to have the greatest impact possible on our boys’ lives. Most importantly, we need local men of character who can commit to serve as mentors for our boys – either as one-on-one mentors, or in a group setting. Additionally, we need experienced board members or advisors, help with writing grants, help with our website, social media, and marketing, corporate sponsors, physical space in Frisco for our group mentoring, and of course, funding. For those who shop online at Amazon, please consider using smile.amazon.com and support Must Care by letting Amazon donate funds to us at no cost to you!
Thank you so much for your support and prayers.
- Lincoln R Carroll, Founder