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The Power of the Gospel
HOW 5 MISSIONARIES HELPED BRING PEACE TO THE RAINFOREST
O n Jan. 8, 1956, five Christian missionaries from the United States went into the rainforests of Ecuador. These men were Jim Elliot, Nate Saint, Ed McCully, Peter Fleming, and Roger Youderian. Their goal was to make first contact with an isolated tribe and bring them the word of God. The men never left the forest. All five were killed, speared to death by members of the tribe they’d come to meet. Anyone who has ever done missionary work has heard of the fate of these five men. Recently, I read “Through Gates of Splendor,” written by Elisabeth Elliot, Jim Elliot’s widow, and “End of the Spear” by Steve Saint, the son of Nate Saint. Steve was 5 years old when his father died. These books tell the full story, beyond the tragic headlines that made international news. Reading these books reminded me of how God’s power can help overcome any challenge. These men knew very well the dangers they faced. In the 1950s, the tribe these missionaries wanted to contact were called the Auca, which is an outdated term that means “savage.” The people of the tribe referred to themselves as the Waodani, and they were regarded as one of the most violent cultures on Earth. The Waodani were terrified of outsiders, whom they believed to be murdering cannibals. They killed anyone who came into the rainforest. The Waodani’s culture of violence was also directed at each other. There was no formal leadership in the tribe, and therefore no way for families to settle disputes, so they turned to violence. It was a lot like the Hatfields and the McCoys, a cycle of violence with everyone just killing each other. In the 1950s, the murder rate within the tribe was 60%. There were only 600 Waodani people, and that number grew smaller all the time. This violence was part of the reason the missionaries felt called by God to bring Christianity to the Waodani. It was their hope that hearing Jesus’ message of love and forgiveness would help the Waodani adopt a more peaceful way of living. These men didn’t come to Ecuador alone. They were accompanied by their wives and children. Another amazing part of this story is this: After the men died, their families continued the mission to bring the word of God to the Waodani. Two years after the missionaries were killed, Rachel Saint, Nate’s sister, and Elisabeth Elliot were invited to live with the Waodani. They learned the Waodani language and translated the Bible for them. Over time, most of the Waodani embraced Christianity. They started their own church, and a few men stepped up to be pastors. The murder rate went down by 90% as these people went from a killing mentality to a loving mentality. Steve Saint joined his aunt and grew up playing with children of the Waodani tribe. Waodani warriors, the same men who killed the missionaries, became like surrogate
grandfathers to these kids. In fact, one of the men who killed Nate Saint visited the United States to see Steve’s son graduate from college. The story of the Waodani is a story about the power of the Gospel. There is no other way to explain how a violent culture could become so transformed. Or why the families of these murdered men chose to stay and help the people who killed their loved ones learn a better way. Steve Saint even returned to Ecuador as an adult, bringing his wife and teenage children to live with the Waodani again. Steve, a pilot like his father, taught a Waodani man to fly a plane so he could bring food supplies and medicines to his people in the jungle. Those five missionaries never saw the fruits of their labor, but their dedication and sacrifice made a difference. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, the Waodani were saved from extinction. It shows how with the power of God, a selfless act can transform people and truly change the world for the better.
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The line between technologies that are beneficial for large businesses and those beneficial for small businesses continues to blur. While the latest software programs were once only available to large companies that could afford them, some of these programs have also become available and profitable for small businesses to use. In an age of increasing connectivity, these are a few tech trends that small businesses should watch out for. While it certainly shouldn’t replace every customer interaction, using AI software programs for small tasks — like email marketing, data entry, accounting, and some low-stress forms of customer service — is invaluable to small businesses. Delegating menial tasks to AI can free up time for you to focus on those more important face-to-face interactions with your customers. “Big data” is intimidating. For years, sifting through customer data and extracting valuable information that can be used to grow businesses was something that only the largest companies had the time, funds, and expertise to do. However, more programs that reduce the upfront investment and expertise necessary to contextualize customer data are popping up. If you can make use of your customers’ data, you can give them an experience with your business that they won’t find many other places. Social media marketing remains an effective tool for attracting customers to your small business, even if the tools continue to change. While marketing on Facebook and Instagram might seem like old news, marketing on trendier apps, like TikTok, Pinterest, or Snapchat, can still work to your business’s benefit. A recent study showed that 45% of consumers head to social media when they have a question about something — are you going to be there to answer it? Keeping up with the latest and greatest tech trends in small-business management can be exhausting, but in an age where technological advancement is accelerating faster than ever, it’s necessary for the survival of businesses of all shapes and sizes. Keep Up With the Big Businesses 3 Tech Trends to Accelerate Your Company Collaboration With Artificial Intelligence Increased Use of Data Analytics Continued Reliance on Social Media
This past October, right before Halloween, we welcomed a new member to the Risk Services/INSURICA team. Bringing on a new team member is always a little scary, but Sara Roper CPCU, AIC quickly proved to be a welcome addition for the rest of the team and our clients. As our newest account manager, Sara is already doing wonders. “Back in December, I was helping a customer solve a problem. He was unhappy with his current carrier. We were able to improve his coverage and save him some money by finding him a new home. He was very happy, and I was thrilled to get him such a good outcome. Being able to use my knowledge to take care of my clients in every way possible is the best part of my job.” Sara graduated from Missouri State University with a degree in human resources, though her first job out of college was doing insurance claims. This began a diverse career in insurance. Sara has done claims, underwriting, special investigations, and a little bit of just about everything the field calls for. “I moved from the carrier side to the agency side back when I lived in Springfield, Missouri,” Sara says. “It was a way to bring together everything I’ve done. I like being able to help people, and I’m best able to help my clients as an account manager. That’s why I feel so at home with Risk Services/INSURICA. It’s a really good atmosphere. You can tell everyone is here for the right reasons; plus, they work well together. It’s a real friendly, family dynamic, which is nice to have at your job.” Sara moved to Little Rock because she was looking for a change, and she certainly found it. Little Rock’s natural beauty is second to none. “Being right on the river is very nice,” says Sara. “It’s really pretty, and there are a lot of opportunities for outdoor activities. Little Rock also has some solid places to go shopping. Finding clearance deals is my stress relief. I love to hit the shops on the weekends and find great deals!” Considering how good Sara is at saving our clients money, it’s no wonder she’s so great at finding deals of her own. We’re thrilled to have Sara’s skills and experience on our team, and we look forward to seeing what she’ll achieve next.
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An Ounce of Prevention I n recent years, stories of childhood sexual abuse have become more and more common. These are devastating accounts of innocence lost. While some of these terrible events happened recently, others only came to light after decades of secrecy. A common question is, “Why did it take so long for victims to speak up?” The terrible truth is that it can take decades for victims to realize what happened to them, and even longer for them to seek justice. The #MeToo movement and growing demands for social reform have helped many victims realize they are not alone, giving them the courage to come forward with their stories. As these stories come to the light, people are calling for justice and change.
HOW INSURANCE CAN HELP PREVENT CHILD SEX ABUSE
promoting prevention, the insurance industry is missing the opportunity to help protect children across the nation.
Attorney Marci Hamilton is the founder and CEO of Child USA, a nonprofit think tank at the University of Pennsylvania focused on research to prevent child abuse. Hamilton believes that insurance carriers can do far more than compensate victims of childhood sex abuse. In fact, she’s suggested strategies for insurance carriers to prevent the abuse from ever happening. In an article written for Verdict, Hamilton offered two proposals: 1. States should require insurers to provide coverage for the negligent failure to prevent child sexual abuse. At the moment, no state has this sort of mandate. 2. Insurance providers must develop child protection audits. If a business fails the audit, the insurer can deny them coverage. As organizations that serve children are often required by law to carry insurance, not having insurance could put them out of business. This incentivizes companies to do more to protect children and pass their audits. “This is an enforcement mechanism in our private industry that other countries don’t have,” Hamilton says. “Insurers do financial audits and building inspections. We have the science and the capacity to ask the right questions.” The data insurance providers have access to would be key in creating predictive modeling. Understanding the circumstances in which child sex abuse occurs and how to prevent it can help improve risk-management practices. In every industry, protecting children begins with stronger risk assessment. “Insurance is a really bad remedy for an injured person,” says Ed Hancock, the chief underwriting officer at Church Mutual. “We cannot put their lives together because they’ve received an award of damages. We need to remove the predators from the workplace.” As the insurance industry struggles to find its role in battling child sex abuse, businesses must also take proactive measures. Companies that serve children need to practice stronger vetting of employees, contractors, and volunteers. Additionally, organizations need to conduct appropriate training about increasing awareness so all members of the organization can recognize the signs of a predator before they have the chance to harm a child.
In 2019, a number of states created new laws to help victims of childhood sex abuse seek justice. Many states offered “look back windows,” which allow victims to bring their cases to court even if the statute of limitations had already expired. One major law in New Jersey had a massive impact when lawyers decided that if a nationwide organization was ever stationed in New Jersey, they could be held accountable for cases of childhood sexual abuse committed by members of their organization — even if those crimes were committed outside of New Jersey. As states help victims seek justice, the cost of the growing number of cases continues to rise. The settlements from these cases can be expensive, which is why even the insurance industry is being changed by child sex abuse cases. However, some experts fear these changes are going in the wrong direction. Many insurance brokers have reported seeing the cost of liability insurance that covers child abuse increase dramatically. In an interview with Leader’s Edge, Chris Kenyon, a partner at M3 Insurance in Madison, Wisconsin, said that “one renewal was $75,000 to $100,000 in premium.”
While the cost of this insurance goes up, the coverage decreases.
“It used to be I would have all the way up to $10 million in coverage if I had an umbrella policy,” Kenyon said. “But now they are restricting it or not offering it at all.” This isn’t just a problem for businesses who need this kind of insurance, such as schools or daycares. By prioritizing self-preservation rather than
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INSIDE This Issue
By the Power of God page 1
Important Tech Trends for Small Businesses to Keep Up With How to Find a Great Deal page 2 Insurance Providers Can Do More to Protect Children Sudoku page 3 Yvon Chouinard’s Rise FromWannabe Fur Trapper to Billionaire Entrepreneur page 4
‘LET MY PEOPLE GO SURFING: THE EDUCATION OF A RELUCTANT BUSINESSMAN’ How Patagonia’s Founder Set a New Standard for Environmental Responsibility
The last of which is truly the core of the brand. Patagonia prioritizes minimalism, function, durability, and reparability in all of its products, from backpacks to jackets. It tracks the energy and water use of its facilities, works to eliminate pollution, focuses on recycled and recyclable materials, participates in environmental activism, funds environmental organizations worldwide, and even encourages shoppers to send in worn-out apparel for reuse and repair. In short, over the course of 272 pages, Chouinard proves he not only talks the talk but also walks the walk — and has made millions championing his cause. He encourages other entrepreneurs to do the same, laying out Patagonia’s footsteps and philosophies for readers to follow. Many already have. “Let My People Go Surfing” was updated and rereleased in 2016, but either version will make entrepreneurs think twice about their environmental impact and what they can do to reduce it. As one Amazon reviewer wrote, “Whether you’re a manager or business owner looking to motivate your employees and create a sustainable business, or a fan of Patagonia, or someone curious about how to live a life you can feel good about, this book should work for you.”
From the very beginning of his 2006 memoir, “Let My People Go Surfing: The Education of a Reluctant Businessman,” it’s clear that Patagonia’s founder, Yvon Chouinard, is not the typical entrepreneur. As a kid, Chouinard wanted to be a fur trapper, and rather than going into business with dreams of getting rich, he started making climbing gear to fund his passion for scaling cliffs and adventuring in the outdoors. “Let My People Go Surfing” follows Patagonia’s meteoric rise through its victories and rough patches — including
the stalled growth that led to layoffs of 20% of the staff in the 1990s — but its main focus is on the company’s ideals. In plain, forthright, and sometimes irascible language, Chouinard lays out Patagonia’s growth goals, culture aims, and environmental stewardship efforts.
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