James, the brother of Christ, writes:

In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.  But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.”   Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do

– James 2:17-18 (NIV)

If we love others and want to help those in need, whether believer or not, we must put our words and beliefs into action.  Here are some of my favorite charities and organizations:

Japan-Focused Organizations

    This unique organization is a network that equips and prepares churches in Japan (and around the world) to do relief work in case of emergency.  As per their mission, CRASH was a first responder during the 2011 earthquake.  Guest-blogger Yuki-Anne helped in relief efforts through this organization.
  • Living Dreams
    The challenges for orphaned children are tremendous and can be overwhelming.  This organization aims not only to help meet Japanese orphans’ basic needs, but also to help them develop the skills and tools they need to succeed and excel in life.

Other Charitable Organizations

  • Samaritan’s Purse
    Samaritan’s Purse does some amazing work and ministry in underdeveloped countries.  In the past, I’ve given to them through Operation Christmas Child (more below) and by buying animals like cows for villages (a very cool way to help!).
  • Operation Christmas Child
    Every year for the last six or seven, my wife and I have participated in this ministry, in which thousands of shoeboxes filled with gifts are given to children around the world, most of whom have never received a Christmas gift before.  What better way to celebrate Christmas than to give to the least fortunate children in the world?
  • World Vision
    This organization runs Operation Christmas Child (see above) as part of a wide variety of campaigns to attack poverty and injustice.  They’re known for their child sponsorship program (which my wife and I have done); another project we like is paying for specific needs (ex. a cow for milk in village; mosquito nesting; part of the expense of bulding a school).
  • To Write Love on Her Arms
    This amazing organization works to help those who are hurting, including people who self-injure, those considering suicide and others in difficult situations.  I’ve rarely found such a loving organization, and one that is also so culturally aware.  They have some great merchandise as well!
  • Voice of the Martyrs
    American Christians sometimes talk about being persecuted, but we have no idea until we find ourselves imprisoned in China; tortured and mutilated in the Middle East; or burned alive in North Korea.  This organization mobilizes the Christian community to support our persecuted brethren however we can.
  • Show Hope
    I’ve often been told that adoption is a “calling.”  I disagree.  The Bible instructs Christians to help the orphan and the widow.  A famed pastor once tweeted that if every American Christian adopted one orphan, there would be no orphans in the world.  Formerly called Shoahannah’s Hope, this is Steven Curtis Chapman’s organization to promote adoption and to assist Christians financially in adopting.
  • Kiva
    I love this organization (and Bill Clinton does, too).  It works like this:  you give a $25 loan to a person in an underdeveloped nation.  They use that loan for their business and they pay you back.  Then you start over again.  In this way, you’ll picking people up and helping them use their skills for lifelong success.
  • World Concern
    This organization’s goal is to bring people out of poverty by developing communities.  Beginning with de-worming medication and safe water, World Concern works to create lasting impact on communities.
  • Tear Fund
    This organization teams with local churches, which are part of the everyday lives of villagers, to defeat disease, improve basic services, resolve economic injustice, restore the environment and tackle disaster.

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