Monday, July 9, 2012

Kept Promises

This thought has been on my mind all week long. I've been swamped in VBS (Vacation Bible School) for the past month and as we kick off our VBS tonight, it's been extremely busy this past week. What does this post have anything to do with DB? A lot. Let me explain...

Many people always ask me, "How did you start your business?" Well, believe it or not, it didn't just pop up in thin air. It actually started about 5 years ago, although I was not aware of this. I don't just put this out there all the time because I'm a very strong believer that your lifestyle, actions, and character will speak for themselves. That being said, I'm sure most of our blog followers, as well as social media, know that I'm a Christian. A little bit about me...I come from a strong Christian background and my dad is a preacher. I was always known as "the preacher's daughter" at school. I started working my first public job at 18 and worked my way up to management position in the dental field. I then became involved with the children's ministry in my home church, here in San Francisco and I realized I loved children. So much in fact that I became a teacher. Prior to becoming a teacher, I was in a very stressful job in the dental field. I was managing an office and with the hours and demands of my public job and the various ministries at my church, I was exhausted, not to mention discouraged. My heart was where my passion was and that was the church. I knew as an adult I just couldn't quit my public job and go volunteer at the church, so I began to pray. I prayed fervently for God to open doors so that I could give 100% of my time to the ministries in our church. I never quit praying this prayer, even when it didn't seem that this prayer would ever be answered. I started teaching in a Christian private academy, not really understanding that God was leading me through an open door that would essentially place me where I am today. See, I made a promise to Him. I told God that if He opened the door for me to work for the church or at least present an opportunity that allowed me to dedicate my time to the ministries of the church without the demands and stress of a public job, I would always put Him first. Always. I remember this strong thought one day that I couldn't get out of my mind "Stay faithful to what you're doing." That was my motivation every day that I got up for work dreading the day. I didn't dread teaching kids but it was so discouraging knowing I was putting in 8+ hours a day and my evenings were crammed full of various projects and jobs for the church. I was beyond tired and knew a burnout was right around the corner. I knew I had to stay faithful to what I was doing. Two years ago a friend of mine presented an opportunity to visit Europe with her. I knew that I would never get to Europe any time soon on my teaching salary, so I started making headbands selling them on the side. I never knew that this was the answer to my prayers 5 years ago. To make a long story short, I was able to quit my teaching job and put my time into building my business. This was the answer to my prayers, although I didn't even realize this until I set down with my dad and some business mentors to draw up a business plan. I was able to generate an income on my own hours, while dedicating my time to the ministries in my church. This past week as I've been at our church working on props and preparing for next week's VBS, I'm reminded that I never would've been able to do this 5 years ago. Yes, overseeing a business and making sure it runs efficiently is hard work, if not harder than a public job, but over the past two years God has placed a wonderful team of people in my path to help me run my business smoothly and efficiently, where when projects or events come up at the church, I can devote however many hours I need to that cause and not feel exhausted or tired. I'm reminded that God is faithful and keeps His promises. Don't give up on praying that prayer, even when it seems like God's not hearing it. He hears every prayer and in due season will reward it. Be encouraged today!

Here's what we've been working on this past week for VBS...

We made hot air balloons out of bouncy balls, fish net and baskets from the dollar store.

Gobs of clouds made from insulation foam core bard, traced out with a hot knife and covered in batting.

Ha! Me on our "white carpet."

Our diligent workers getting the clouds done.

Clouds, airplanes, and kites hanging from our foyer.

Our friends for the week. 

We used blue plastic table covers from the dollar store to cover our entire platform.

This was not very easy. So glad it's up!

A man in our church made this hot air balloon for us. This is a picture pre-completed but you can still get the "awe" effect. I really hope that fabric is salvageable after VBS because I'd love to have it!

Clouds suspended above the pews.

And our final stage set!


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