Blog January 28th Mustard Seed Songs become a charity

Love is the Way featuring Lucy Stimpson-Maynard from the album Love is the Way recorded and produced by Bob Ross

So here is my final reminiscence from seven years ago!
I left the last blog saying that this week I would tell you how many copies of our first CD “I Look Up To Heavens” was sold – well a few more than the 50 my son James predicted!- approximately 3000 which is not exactly a Grammy but still not bad. Later songs taken from other Mustard Seed CDs were used on 80,000 mini -CDs that were attached to the 40th Anniversary edition of “Every Day With Jesus” and then distributed worldwide, however that’s a future blog story!
I had borrowed money to pay for the duplication of the first 1000 copies of “I Look Up To The Heavens” but was selling more that we needed to cover the monthly repayments. I remember having “that feeling inside” that we should send Katherine Knight some money in Peru. Katherine was the daughter of Paul Knight who introduced me to the Alpha Course. Katherine had taken time off from her studies to work voluntarily in Peru for the Christian agency, ““Latin Link”. She was part of a young team that were helping build two projects, the first of which was an orphanage.
I rang Paul in February 1999 to tell him that CD sales were going well and that I would like to send Katherine £500.00 – in fact they were not going that well – I just felt confident that we would be able to raise that amount. Paul was obviously delighted and agreed to ring Katherine to tell her the good news. When he made the phone call, he did give her a chance to first say anything but went straight into “I have some great news for you- the sales of “I Look Up To the Heavens” are going well enough for Ken to send you £500.00.” Paul expected some sort of emotional reaction but not the flood of tears that followed. Katherine then explained that her team was near the end of their orphanage building project, but all of the materials they needed to complete the work had been stolen. The team were devastated and thought that they would have to abandon the project. In tears they spent the night in prayer. That had been the previous night – so when Paul told his daughter that £500.00 was on its way, that was indeed a real answer to their prayers, especially as when the money was converted to local currency it turned out to be the exact amount needed to replace the stolen materials and so finish the project!!
Sometime later I got a phone call from the father of one of Katherine’s “Latin Link” team saying that he had heard the amazing story of how money received from our CD sales had enabled the orphanage building work to be completed. He then went on to say that he was a Solicitor who specialised in creating charities and would I like our song writing mission to become a registered charity? “Yes please” was my simple answer. Mustard Seed Songs was not a rocket science title – the parable from Matthew 13 seemed totally appropriate for a project that we felt from a small beginning would grow and grow. So, in late 1999 Mustard Seed Songs became Registered Charity No 177618.
I remember someone once saying to me that they became a Christian “Because it works.” Reading the Bible, prayer, worship, being inspired by other people and attending church are all important factors in increasing one’s faith but so too are one’s experiences. By building Memorials and creating Festival Days the Hebrew people helped ensure that they did not forget the blessings of God. The story of how Mustard Seed Songs became a charity is one that I can always look back on to help me strengthen my faith.
Quote of the week
Worrying won’t stop the bad stuff from happening – it just stops you from enjoying the good
Charlie Brown from Peanuts