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The heart of transformational development strategy is in the way development workers interact with community people. Reflection on the story of Zacchaeus, Luke 19:1-10, suggests four indicators of transformational development.
Time spent looking for people in trees
One very important indicator of transformational development is the amount of time that facilitators spend looking for people in the trees that are watching them. Such people want to be involved, but for some reason they think they are too small, or too big, or too shy, or too old, etc. They look on from the sidelines. In our frantic efforts to do impossible things with unrealistic deadlines, how much time do we spend looking for the people in the trees?
Number of people called by name
Another indicator is the number of people that a development worker knows by name, and has spent time in their home. Not to convert them, but to invite them by name to engage developmentally in their community.
Amount of sharing with the poor
Another indicator is the amount of sharing with the poor that is taking place in the community. Transformational development is all about deepening love for God and neighbor, which has an outcome of learning what the poor need and being instrumental in seeing that it is provided for them.
Another is the type of repentance that is visible as people come to know that in their condition, whatever it is, they are loved by God.