About Mike Rusch

Based in Downtown Bentonville, Arkansas, Mike is the Chief Executive Officer at Pure Charity, a nonprofit dedicated to building world class technology solutions for Nonprofit Organizations, Individual Fundraising, and Community Advocacy.

Mike currently serves on the Board of Directors for Help One NowMercy House GlobalCanopy Northwest Arkansas99 Balloons@HopeMob, Laundry Love, and Serve Northwest Arkansas.  

Prior to Pure Charity, Mike worked for Nickelodeon, The Walt Disney Company, Hershey Foods, and served in the US Marine Corps. Mike is a husband of 22 years, father of 4, a lover of a great story, and never too far from a fly-fishing river.  

The Idea Camp reflections

Had the chance to attend The Idea Camp in DC, and maybe the place to start is with a short behind the scenes video of the event…

It was an incredible few days to spend with friends (both old and new), and really use the time in a way that pushes everyone’s ideas, thoughts and perspectives forward in the name of helping our communities (and our world).

My biggest take-away? A new hero.

I don’t have many, but Greg Russinger (founder of Just One) was a huge inspiration to me either because his words spoke to where I am in life, or because he lives what he speaks (maybe both). Using the story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10: 30-37), he developed the theme of “presence” in three themes of “presence as reaction, risk and return”.

As a Reaction…will we have presence to enter into suffering? Allowing their suffering to become mine? (Luke 10: 30-33)

As Risk…justice and the desire to be just, requires time (presence). Presence is costly and messy. It requires giving up of control. (Luke 10: 34)

As Return…returning will always cost us more. Presence as an element of return decides if what we are doing will last or end. Are we going to be a people who commits to return? We will see it through? (Luke 10: 35)

Why does this all matter?

It matters because as we move and act within brokenness both as individuals and as communities in the hope of caring for he poor and the oppressed, it will be our ability to be present that will ultimately determine if we will succeed or fail.

The questions in front of me know: how do I react to brokenness, will I allow the risk of brokenness and can I continue to return to brokenness? If I can, I belong. If I can’t, it’s time to step aside.

Would love to continue to explore these concepts with anyone, but just too much to capture with words right now. But, I found a new hero nonetheless.

In fact, felt like it was time to update the title of my blog to reflect this concept “…pursuing presence”.

I’d encourage you to spend a little time on their website (http://www.theideacamp.com), to get a feel for the types of topics that were discussed. I had ten pages worth of notes from the different forums and workshops. Happy to share if you’re interested…just shoot me an email.

Next Idea Camp is in Portland Nov 11th and 12th around the theme of “Being Present in the City”. Love that as it applies to our work with Cobblestone Project. Going to try and make the schedule work so that Corrie and I can both attend.

Anyone traveling soon?

Being present