For the last 15 months I have been part of a work-at-home business called Thirty-One Gifts. It is a direct sales company that sells personalized purses, totes and organizational products through home parties. It has been a lot of fun for me to reconnect with old friends, meet new people and enjoy some recognition for a job well done while contributing financially to our family's needs. Many friends have supported me in this venture, so I feel some explanation is in order as to why I am quitting.
I was beginning to build a nice little team of consultants and learning to balance the demands of family and business when a customer's email disturbed me greatly. My customer said she no longer wanted to support Thirty-One since they are supporting Planned Parenthood. What?!?! Planned Parenthood is the largest provider of abortions in our country. I was shocked by this, but did some investigation and found the source she was referencing.
Thirty-One created a charitable giving foundation this year which gives money and products to support causes that empower women and girls. "Thirty-One Gives" listed on their website some of the organizations who have benefited from their giving. A few of these organizations, at least on a national level, do have a record of working with Planned Parenthood. You can find more information about these connections here.
Thirty-One has denied making any contributions directly or indirectly to Planned Parenthood or any organizations that do not support their mission of empowering girls and women. This is the official statement that was released when questions were being asked about this connection with some of the partners and Planned Parenthood. However, an easy internet research will show multiple accounts of YWCA, Girl Scouts and Komen having connections to Planned Parenthood.
I wish that there would have been more careful consideration by Thirty-One Gives when choosing organizations who fit their mission. I believe that Christians in business have a great opportunity to be above reproach in all associations. I understand that many of the organizations benefitting from Thirty-One Gives are doing good things for women. However, a little bit of horrible mixed in with a lot of good, to me, still equals unacceptable.
I joined Thirty-One because I felt confident that I could represent a company that was based on Proverbs 31. Proverbs 31:10-31 describes a wise, frugal, industrious and capable woman, but it is based primarily on verse 30 that says, "...a woman that fears the Lord is to be praised." I want to live up to all of the qualities of the Proverbs 31 woman, yet the one I value most is fearing (loving and obeying) the Lord. I do not want to justify or be defensive about anything I am doing. Therefore, I cannot in good conscience continue to associate myself with Thirty-One. Speaking up for the unborn and training our girls in godliness are causes that I care about greatly. I feel that Thirty-One has compromised in a way by defending these associations as harmless.
All of this may mean nothing to other people, but for me, I want to be confident that I am doing what is right. I realize that everyone does not feel the way I do and I am not doubting anyone's Christianity if they choose to stay with Thirty-One. I am confident in my decision and I am ready to focus completely on my calling as a wife, mother and member of the Body.