A Partnership of Community

CJGodsWholePurposeToday, I’d like to introduce you to my friend, Samantha Juneau, known to her friends as Sam. We’ve met just a few times, but there’s something remarkable about spending time with her. Sam’s smile lights up a room and she exudes warmth, kindness and joy.

Last week when we met, I talked almost non-stop as I have a habit of doing. Sam smiled and quietly held my hand. During our conversation, I noticed her necklace. It was beautiful. I told her how much I liked it and reached for it to get a better view. As I released the beads, time stopped. My hand was right beside her ventilator.

Sam is a medical miracle, a petite young woman born with Spina Bifida and a poor prognosis. As an infant, she was released from the hospital under the county’s long-term foster care program. She spent the first twenty years of her life in the loving care of her foster family before joining them as her forever family through adoption.

SamanthaJuneau01At age 32, Sam continues to be a medical miracle. She has spent countless days in the hospital, tallying up more surgeries than anyone wants to count and living with chronic pain. Yet even under these difficult circumstances, Sam is filled with joy and freely offers her joy to everyone around her.

Until the moment my hand touched her beaded necklace, I hadn’t truly acknowledged Sam’s disabilities. She sits in a motorized wheelchair. She has a ventilator, a feeding tube and awkward hands. What I had acknowledged was her inviting smile, her warm eyes and her contagious joy.

Author and founder of Rest Ministries, Lisa Copen, wrote, “having a faith to depend on makes a significant difference in [the] lives [of those with chronic illness] — so much so that it actually can influence their physical symptoms or how well they cope with their illness.”

This quote describes Sam’s life well. She believes her purpose in life is to bring joy to others, yet through hand-beading jewelry, Sam has also discovered another purpose — to help to raise awareness of chronic illness by donating what her hands have made.

Sam has inspired us at Chronic Joy Ministry to develop a partnership with individuals or organizations who wish to donate a craft, talent or gift – the joyful work of hands and heart – as thank you gifts to donors who further the work of the ministry through a tax-deductible donation of $25 or more.

It is a partnership of hope. A partnership of purpose and worth. A partnership of community.

Today, we are pleased to unveil the Chronic Joy Ambassador Initiative, a partnership recognizing those in our ministry community who exemplify one or more of our ministry foundations:

Hope, Purpose, Worth, Encouragement, Community-Building, and Joy.

Our Ambassadors will receive a certificate recognizing their vital place in this ministry, a story of introduction shared through social media (unless they decline), and our sincere gratitude and appreciation.

Through the Ambassador Initiative, donors will receive a gift of the heart, a tangible thank you for investing in the work of the ministry. A partnership of hope and community.

Chronic Joy Ministry will be able to widen our reach by continuing to raise awareness of chronic illness, developing and producing educational resources and awareness tools, sponsoring activities and events, supporting our day-to-day operational expenses, and helping other organizations to begin ministry.

It is a partnership of hope. A partnership of purpose and worth. A partnership of community.

So today, it is my great joy to introduce to you our first Chronic Joy Ambassador, Samantha Juneau.

Sam has designed and donated 20 unique and beautiful bracelets.

SamJuneauJewelry02The first 20 donors to support this ministry with a gift of $25 or more will receive one of Sam’s hand-beaded bracelets as a thank you gift.

To donate, please click here.*

To learn more about the Ambassador Initiative, please click here.

To welcome this remarkable young woman as Chronic Joy Ministry’s first Ambassador, please leave your comments here.


*Donations are facilitated through National Christian Fund via The Chronic Joy Ministry Fund. If you are able to donate via e-check it saves Chronic Joy Ministry the credit card processing fees and we receive your full donation.


KAR_0817Pamela Piquette is the mom of three adult children, grandma of a sweet baby granddaughter, and wife of almost 30 years. She has Ehlers-Danlos, chronic migraines, fibromyalgia, and dysautonomia.

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