Wisdom & Money & the Be Present Empowerment Model

Why this Model is one of Wisdom & Money’s Core Practices

Wisdom & Money dives boldly into the middle of one of the hottest aspects of our world today—money. Not just to dip our toe into philanthropy or investing, but right into the intersection of our faith and our relationship to money (personally, organizationally and globally). When the timing is right, we break the taboo of silence and share our personal financial details and organizational financial status and needs.

Money is not just cash. It includes all that our society attaches to money—for example status, access, power—and a long history that supported the accumulation of wealth by some and thwarted or prevented access to adequate resources by others. Much of the destruction and injustice that cuts through our world today involves economic inequities. Because of this, working with our relationship with money touches almost every aspect of our lives. It easily triggers feelings of security/insecurity (and actual lack of security for some), worth, fear, greed to name a few.

Big emotions and powerful assumptions based on our cultural beliefs about money aren’t easy to navigate.

There came a point in Harvest Time, Wisdom & Money’s predecessor, when it was clear that we needed an additional practice powerful enough to explore and shift these painful dynamics while continuing to open the doorway for spiritual transformation—Be Present, Inc.’s Be Present Empowerment Model.

Be Present’s model involves knowing yourself outside the distress of oppression (outside of anything that interferes with bringing your full self to the moment), listening to others in a present and conscious state and building effective relationships and sustaining true alliances.

The Be Present Empowerment Model has been fully infused into Wisdom & Money, from retreat circles to diverse partnerships, from work among Staff and Board to HR policies and organizational structures. In every aspect of W&M’s work, the Be Present Empowerment Model has helped Wisdom & Money to hold the vision and mission clear.

It would be wonderful if using this model within Wisdom & Money resulted in quick and easy transformation. However, we have lived generations in the midst of cultural and personal mess around money. It takes practice, humbleness and beginning again and again. It demands that we take risks to slow things down and see if something new is possible. It requires that we step into our own leadership and take personal responsibility for our words and actions.

The Be Present Empowerment Model has helped Wisdom & Money grow into the unique organization we were called to be. In the process, Be Present, Inc. and Wisdom & Money have developed an effective and sustainable partnership strong enough to support the level of spiritual and economic transformation both organizations seek.

Read more about Wisdom & Money’s 9-year experiment of giving away a family farm in Mississippi in collaboration with a cross race and class group composed of both donors and gifted.
Read more about Be Present, Inc.
Read more about Wisdom & Money.

Drawing by Khara Scott-Bey from Big Topics at Midnight