How Everyday People Live Out Their Christian Faith

Illustrating how men and women display their love for Jesus in their day-to-day lives.
Little things that may have an eternal impact. Might these stories motivate you to use your talents?
  • Labor Mission Trips

    SHOWING GOD’S LOVE IN A NEW LAND

    According to the gospel story, God came into this world as an ordinary man, and experienced the struggles and joys, the failures and triumphs, the fears and hopes of his community. "The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighborhood." (John 1:14, MSG). He loved His community so much that he was willing to die for the sake of its restoration. I am so privileged and joyful to embody this story in my Central Asian community. In 2017, it was time to start the next chapter of my life. Having served as a principal of a Christian school in England for over 20 years, I felt I had done the best I could and didn’t want to outstay my welcome. I resigned from my job but still wanted to teach a few more years in a new place. Little did I know that God would guide me to my forever home in a far-away land. Growing up in England, I experienced many comforts. Perhaps these comforts were talking when people laughed at my plans to work in Central Asia: "You'll probably end up living in a yurt in the middle of nowhere, milking goats, and teaching in a wooden shack." I knew that wasn't accurate, but I honestly didn't know what to expect. Even though the process of coming to Central Asia involved loads of red tape, God made my transition seamless and gave me peace concerning my decision. I had been abroad lots of times with packaged holiday deals. Coming to live in Central Asia opened up… Read More

  • Children Unique Ministries

    EMILY’S AWESOME TOY DRIVE

    I feel I was called to organize toy drives after I found myself in the hospital on Christmas at age four. In 2009, I became very sick and was admitted to Good Samaritan Hospital on Christmas night. The next day, a Child Life representative greeted me with a large gift bag filled with toys. My mom thanked her but said that I had already received my Christmas presents. The Child Life team explained that no child should be in the hospital during the holiday season but if they are, they should feel the joy of the holidays while they are here. From that year on, I was determined to help those hospitalized during the holidays. For the past 10 years, I've done a toy drive in my community, asking for donations of new, unwrapped toys. We collected about 20 toys the first year. And it's grown dramatically every year since, so much so that we donated 4,412 toys last year. I now donate toys to children in several hospitals and organizations throughout Long Island: Cohen Children's Medical Center, Stony Brook University Hospital, Winthrop Hospital, the Ronald McDonald House, the John Theissen Foundation, and Angela's House. Some of those organizations also keep siblings in mind as well and that is very important to me. My goal this year is to exceed the number of toys collected and delivered last year, and bring joy to the children that need it most. My isolated incident and hospital stay in 2009 set the tone for me wanting to pay it forward. My grandfather, my… Read More

  • Financial Help Labor Unique Ministries

    EMERGENCY RV

    I've spent the last two years placing families who have lost their homes through natural disasters into free RVs so they have a place to live. But I’ve received the greatest blessing because I’ve seen God working miracles and bringing me back to Him. I accepted Jesus at 16 but I hadn’t been walking closely with Him for some time. In 2018, my six-year-old daughter, Luna, and I were preparing to have our first Thanksgiving alone in Colorado. I wanted to do something to show her the meaning of giving. I heard about the people of Paradise, California where 50,000 people were left homeless from wildfires. I saw a story of a man giving thanks that he still had an RV to live in. That’s when the idea came to me. Why don’t we buy a used RV, drive it to California and give it to a family that lost their home. I contacted everyone selling an RV locally on Craig’s List and told them our plan. One guy sold me his RV for $2,500 instead of the $12,000 he was asking. That was the first time God showed me His hand in this. Once Luna and I took off for Paradise, I saw more evidence of God's presence. On Facebook, I told people to email me if they knew of a family in Paradise that was now homeless. I got several hundred emails. But people also wrote they'd donate their RV to give to a family. A friend in media relations heard our plan, alerted the press and we… Read More

  • Financial Help Food Labor

    THE FUNNEL CAKE QUEEN

    If you’ve truly hit rock bottom and come out of it thanks to God’s blessings, then I think you should be a light to others that are struggling. I’ve lived with no running water, had my car repossessed and sold drugs just to feed my three little kids. I hit my lowest point 11 years ago when I saw an acquaintance walking on the street. I just offered him a ride and he gave me $10 for gas. What I didn’t know is that he had robbed someone earlier in the day. He was arrested, and because he was in my car, I was arrested; then tried and convicted as an accomplice. I spent three months in prison. But it was the most rewarding three months of my life. I needed that time in prison so God could sit me down, show me who I had become and bring me back to Him. While in prison, I was surrounded by Godly women and invited to their Bible studies. I had always known about Jesus but I needed to believe and follow Him once again. And I recommitted my life to Him. At the beginning of 2020, I started a funnel cake business. I top them with powdered sugar, whipped crèam, ice cream, candy or syrup, and sell them at my store called Funnel Cake Queen. And people love them. But I was feeling a nudge from God to give back. I knew people were struggling, especially during this pandemic. So I posted something on Facebook, asking people what bills they… Read More

  • Labor Unique Ministries

    BLESSING OUR NEIGHBORS IN NEED

    We run a business called Cayman Kayaks. Or I should say, we ran that business. The pandemic has shut down the tourism sector in the Cayman Islands and so we're living off our savings. We didn’t want to just feel sorry for ourselves so we vowed to help others with all this extra time. We started volunteering with an organization on the island that delivers food to families in need. We did this twice each week for several months, and really formed relationships with these families. We had the opportunity to be a living example of Christ and we made extra time to pray with them before the deliveries. One day, a single mom living in a shed with two kids confided in me that she was pregnant. This woman had nothing for her expectant baby and couldn't afford to buy a thing. My heart went out to her, so I made a post on a Facebook group I'm part of, asking if anyone had any baby clothes or items for this expectant mom. We were overwhelmed with over 50 individual responses. We were able to abundantly meet her needs. We thought we could bless others with some items that we'd received from this outpouring of kindness. So we did. And word started to spread. Even more people started calling us, wanting to donate clothing items for all ages for us to distribute to people in need. At the same time, we heard about more people that were struggling on the island. We were inundated with clothes and toys, far… Read More

  • Labor Prayer Verbalizing the Gospel

    NEVER GIVING UP ON SOMEONE

    I just started a new job when I met him, the man God wanted to reach. At the time, my job was to work on radio towers and he soon became my climbing partner which meant we were now climbing up radio towers together. You get to know someone really well when you are stuck with them 9-12 hours a day 5-6 days a week with literally nowhere to go. I never wanted to push God on him, but I also wasn’t going to hide who I was from him. I would share with him how every morning as I drove to work, I turned on worship music and had a list of people that I would pray for. He responded, "you don’t pray for me, do you?" It turns out he hated God. Still, I continued to pray for him and kept telling him I was praying; I wanted him to know someone cared. After a while, his response softened and he told me, “well, if you’re going to pray, pray for my daughter but not for me.” He later moved away, but we stayed in touch as I saw his heart continue to soften. He fell off the wagon one night and became suicidal. He came to me that night, and as my dad and I sat with him for two hours, all we knew to say to him was he had purpose, that God had a plan for him. Later, we found out that simple truth saved his life. He ended up in jail that night, but… Read More

  • Labor Mission Trips Verbalizing the Gospel

    WORLD WIDE CHURCH PLANTERS

    In 1998, the Lord placed a dream in the heart of two men: to see the world come to Christ in their lifetime. That year, Dr. Steve Wilkes and I decided to follow the Lord's command and start a new type of missions organization. Through our ministry, World-Wide Church Planters, we work in harvest areas around the world to not only see people come to Christ, but to also see new churches started. We train local church planters to evangelize within their communities and start Bible studies which lead to new churches. These new churches are then challenged to start other churches. The ministry and reach of WWCP has been tremendous. In the years since we first began, WWCP has done ministry in 25 nations, has seen over 600 new churches planted, and has seen thousands of professions of faith. However, He was not done with us. In 2004, we began working with indigenous pastors in areas where there were no missionaries, and this has become our current method of ministry. We do projects all around the world, but our two biggest areas of work are in Burundi, Africa and the Amazon Basin of Brazil. In the small, war torn country of Burundi, we have found a remarkable mission field. Our first major project here was in 2004 to train 23 church planters. From this class, we saw 72 churches planted. Since then, we know of over 300 new churches that have begun in Burundi alone. God is good! We also began work in the Amazon… Read More

  • Labor Unique Ministries

    HIGHLIGHTING PEOPLE THAT SERVE

    I started Support Someone Saturday last year to highlight the great things people are doing to serve others during the pandemic. I had an idea about doing a video interview series back in February. Then in April, I went through some major dental issues. I was in significant pain with an ice pack on my face for about ten days. I had eight dentist appointments over two months. During that painful time, I would pray while icing my face. It was then that God really impressed upon me to start the Support Someone Saturday interview series. My goal is to get the word out about all the positive things people are doing through charities, foundations, ministries and nonprofits to help those in need, especially during the pandemic. Support Someone Saturdays is an interview that lasts about 30 minutes. I have talked to founders, directors and leaders of organizations like Habitat for Humanity, Administer Justice, Team World Vision and more. The purpose is to inform the viewers about the founding of the organization, the mission and what they are doing to help those in need. Those I interview usually share some real-life stories of people that have been helped. They also share ways that people can get on board, donate, or volunteer. They talk about how the pandemic has affected their organization. I hope to interview more organizations not only in Illinois but around the United States. I want to inspire Christians and others that watch the interviews to start giving back, to do more to tangibly step out and meet… Read More

  • Children Labor

    SHE BECAME AN URBAN MISSIONARY

    Even amidst a global pandemic, the Lord’s work is still being done. I serve with Urban Impact Foundation in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This incredible ministry does holistic community outreach through programs in athletics, education, and arts, focusing on building relationships and discipling students. After working as a camp counselor in the program’s education department, I fell in love with the students and the deep relationships I cultivated with them. So I decided to go on staff as a full-time urban missionary! I get to pray with families, coach graduating high schoolers about their next steps, and give out meals to those in need. Covid does not have to deter us from sharing Jesus with others or seeking out ministry opportunities. I assist students with their online classes through the learning lab education program. I even get to share the Gospel with them during lunch or recess breaks! Urban Impact also leads small socially-distanced Bible studies. Technology has thankfully come a long way, and I am in the process of setting up a Bible study group to lead virtually with the fourth and fifth grade girls that I disciple. It’s amazing to pour into youth who are hungry to dive deeper into their faith. Combining my background in social work with a passion for my city fulfills my call to minister to kids, especially during this hard time in history. There is such a great need in my city of Pittsburgh, and so I enjoy being able to help and give back! In an urban city filled with gun violence, poverty, death,… Read More

  • Food Labor Unique Ministries

    COOKIES FOR CAREGIVERS

    It's amazing to see the way God uses everyday people to carry out His will. Who would've thought something as simple as cookies would be the vessel that He would use with us. We have been friends for 15 years and, like everyone, were quarantined at home with our families for a couple months. We decided to learn some new things during that time. It turns out we both took on making homemade cookies. A competitive spirit entered into our discussion, and we challenged each other to a bake off. We decided to let our mayor and the frontline workers at our local hospital be the judges. So we delivered our cookies, and we instantly saw the joy it brought these frontline workers. We decided to make more cookies and give them to workers at other hospitals, grocery stores, fire departments and police precincts. And we couldn't believe the reaction. Friends wanted to help and they started making cookies for us to deliver. We were overrun with cookies! Each cookie results in multiple smiles: to the people receiving the cookies, the people making them and even those delivering them. After all, when you try to bless others, it’s usually you that receives the bigger blessing. This idea became a way for parents to do something wonderful with their kids and teach them the value of giving. We are all a bit dinged up during this pandemic and looking for a way to reach out to show some love. We found it with these cookies. We are trying to live out… Read More

  • Children Labor Unique Ministries

    DREAM CATCHERS ACADEMY

    There are thousands of kids here in Nigeria that don't know where their next meal is coming from or where they'll be sleeping tonight. I should know. I was one of them. I lived on the streets for four years when I was young. I passed the time and took my mind off my situation by teaching myself to dance. Something wonderful happens when you are dancing---you let yourself go and you become totally free. But there were so many days that were very difficult. I knew at a young age that God had a purpose for my life and I just had to stay strong while His plan for me unfolded. I survived being homeless, and as a 14-year-old, I felt God was calling me to help those young homeless children make a better future for themselves. I knew what these kids were going through and that's why I started the Dream Catchers Academy as a teenager. We all need hope. For the past 18 years, Dream Catchers Academy for Girls has used dance, drama and music as a tool to encourage underprivileged or destitute girls to stay in school and pursue their dreams. This is a way for them to build confidence and it's a way for me to share my Christian faith. This is all free to these girls since they can't afford to pay for anything. And if they are homeless, they can even come live here and I'll provide shelter and all the basic necessities of life. Currently, I have 20… Read More

  • Labor Unique Ministries

    USING MY PLATFORM TO HELP OTHERS

    When I was a freshman at college, I lost both my parents to prescription drug overdoses. Within hours of each other. They were wonderful loving parents but like so many people, they were hooked on pain medications first prescribed after medical operations. My mom died after ingesting fentanyl from her pain patch. My dad called with the news and told me to immediately hop on a plane to come home. While I was flying, he also ingested a lethal dose of fentanyl from his pain patch. It was surreal and I didn’t allow myself to believe this really happened. When asked, I lied about how my parents passed away, saying my mom died of respiratory failure and my dad’s heart failed. When the autopsy report came back, I refused to open it. I was ashamed and felt I would be judged. I was angry, and felt betrayed by both my parents and God. How could He allow this to happen? It’s crazy how you can find ways to avoid the truth. I was on the college gymnastics team and I poured myself into the sport. Athletes are wired to be tough and I thought I could get through this on my own. After graduation, I became a sports broadcaster and found myself telling the intimate stories of the athletes on the field. Yet, I realized I had never dealt with the truth in my own life. And so, I confronted it. Seven years after their passing, I started opening up to the truth of what happened to my parents, and… Read More

  • Other

    IT IS WELL WITH MY SOUL

    "It Is Well With My Soul" is my favorite hymn. I’ve always loved it, but it also seems to describe my walk with the Lord in some ways. I’m in my mid-60s now, and I’ve had the gift of knowing the Lord for over 50 years. It’s a journey unlike any other---one that I’d never want to travel without Him. I left home at 17 to be closer to my wife-to-be. I finished high school in a new town and bought a little trailer where I made my home. Shortly thereafter, a tornado hit my trailer and destroyed it. We married when I was 19. We met during Sunday School. I knew I’d marry her the moment I saw her. We had two children. Then I lost my oldest brother when he was 47. Fourteen months later, I lost my wife of 24 years after a 10-year battle with cancer. God was the Great Physician and had healed her from incurable cancer, but she became ill afterward and passed away. I was devastated. How would I live without her? I truly didn’t think I could. But I felt God’s presence all around me. Over the next 15 years, I became “Granpa” to eight grandchildren. But then I lost my mother, and in 2015, I lost my daddy. I sure am blessed to have had so many wonderful people in my life, and God’s gentle voice reminds me of this as He has always been my comforter and my healer. I remarried, and the same year I lost my father, we… Read More

  • Children Special Needs

    OVERCOMING OBSTACLES AT AGE 10

    My son, Isaiah, has no peripheral vision and can only see one foot directly in front of him. But that hasn't stopped him from playing football. Or baseball. Or basketball. Immediately after he was born, my wife noticed there was something that wasn't quite right with his eyes. We thought it might just be fluid in his eyes. At two months, we took him to an eye specialist. After some extensive tests, he broke the news to us: Isaiah has bilateral optic nerve coloboma--the tissue didn't form properly around his retina. He actually has holes in his retinas. He would never be able to see much. While we were devastated, we also felt God blessed us with the diagnosis coming at such a young age; we could start working with specialists to help him adapt to this life. This would be his normal so it was up to us to help him make the most of life. And boy, has he! At age four, he learned how to roller skate and ride a two-wheel bike. He started playing baseball in the Miracle League where the ball whistled when it was pitched to him. And at age 10, he started playing football. Isaiah is the nose guard on defense who lines up right over the center, so he can see when the ball is snapped. He loves the contact and practices harder than just about any kid. Some of his teammates didn’t even realize he couldn’t see a foot in front of him. But he led the team in sacks, tackles… Read More

  • Children Labor Unique Ministries

    GARRETT’S PLACE

    I was absolutely devastated when our son, Garrett, died of SIDS. I cried out to God, "Why?" That happened 27 years ago and the pain is still ever-present, and always will be. God blessed us with two other wonderful sons who have since grown. After our boys started their own lives, there was a lonely spot in my heart, an emptiness. I turned to my husband and said we should become foster parents. He was reluctant, since this wasn't our "plan." We had a 401K and wanted to travel as empty nesters. But we went to some fostering classes, and the light went on for him. We became foster parents, and after a couple years, we adopted two beautiful children. A few years later, we adopted twins, so our family now includes four young energetic children. Since we were foster parents, we saw how little foster care kids have of their own. When they go from one home to another, they usually bring all their belongings in one sack. They've never have their own "stuff". This broke our hearts. We felt a nudge to change this. So my husband and I cashed in our 401K and started Garrett's Place. We provide free clothes, toys and books to foster children. When they enter Garrett's Place, kids get a suitcase and can fill it with toys and 14 outfits. It's a way of giving the foster children some control, something they haven't had much of in their lives. Then we put a Bible… Read More

  • Labor Unique Ministries

    EMPOWERING CUTS

    I travel around the country giving free haircuts to the homeless, veterans and anyone going through tough financial times. There is something about a fresh haircut that puts a bounce in your step. But I don't look at these as just haircuts. I feel I am empowering people because this gives them a bit of hope and an assurance that someone cares about them. That's why I named my ministry, Empowering Cuts. As a kid, my dad used to give me haircuts because we couldn't afford going to a barber. But honestly, he would mess up my hair really badly. So I guess that is where I got my interest in going to barber school. When I was there, my instructor would take us to homeless shelters to get some practice cutting hair. I loved talking to these men because I wanted to understand their addictions. You see, both my mom and dad were drug addicts. I wanted to try to figure out what leads to addiction. Even though my childhood was difficult because of this, I know I wouldn't be the person I am today if it wasn't for my faith. When I graduated from barber school, I set out to give these free haircuts to those in need. My friends told me I was crazy, that this didn't make sense. I had children at home that I needed to support. The money I make being an Uber driver isn't a lot, but it does pay the bills. But I know that God gave me a clear message to… Read More

  • Other Prayer

    FROM HATRED TO PURE LOVE

    My husband was a very successful businessman and always wanted to mentor others, showing them the steps to success. He was a true giver. But we all know people who tend to overstep the boundaries, taking someone's kindness and using it for their own gain. My husband had one such particular colleague. He started treating my husband terribly, stealing and poisoning my husband's clients against him. At one point, after a business dispute, he even threatened our family's lives. For a time, we lived in fear. I developed such a hatred toward this man that I found myself wishing him dead. But God led me to Matthew 6:14-15. He said that I had to forgive my enemies. What?! How could I forgive a man that has taken advantage of my husband and threatened my family? He doesn't deserve my forgiveness, and he's never apologized to me. So why should I show him any mercy? Then God reminded me, "Blessed are the merciful, for they shall be shown mercy." Who was I to judge? Despite my stubbornness, I begged God to make me willing. So, every time I thought of this man, I mumbled, "I hate him, God. But forgive me and bless him." I did this everyday regardless of how I felt about him. Eight months later, I was driving down the road, and felt something overwhelm me to tears. It was God filling me with love and forgiveness for this man. You cannot give what you have not received. Yet, we've all received forgiveness from our Heavenly Father.… Read More

  • Labor Mission Trips

    GOD CALLED ME BY NAME

    My name is Levi and this is my story of how God called me by name to do missions. I was working as a pizza deliverer and struggling with my sense of purpose in life as a twenty-year-old college graduate. My mom’s advice was to look into a missions program called The World Race. It's a mission trip to 11 countries during an 11 month timeframe. When I had first heard about it years ago, I dismissed the idea of going because it cost too much money. Yet now, here I was, seeking newness and purpose in my mundane, day-to-day grind. So I applied to the program. Ironically, the week that I got the exciting news that I was accepted to participate in this life-changing missions experience was the same week that I received the unfortunate news that my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer. Suddenly, I didn’t know what to do. Was the right choice to travel abroad and serve others while sharing Jesus with them? Or was the better choice to stay home and be with my family? Trying to find guidance, I opened up my Bible to a random page and began reading. My eyes landed on Mark 2:14. It said, “‘Follow me,’ Jesus told him, and Levi got up and followed him.” Levi got up and followed him. Well, if that wasn’t God directly speaking to me, I don’t know what is. So I decided to get up and follow Jesus around the world. For the next 11 months, I met so many amazing people in… Read More

  • Labor Unique Ministries

    TRULY UNSTOPPABLE

    I lost my left arm in a shark attack while I was surfing at age 13. I felt a sudden tug and pressure on my arm and saw a flash of gray which turned out to be a 14-foot tiger shark. I went into survival mode and began praying, “God, please help me, please get me to the beach.” I prayed this prayer many times. I was rescued and rushed to the hospital where I lost 60% of my blood. I’m thankful I made it through that day and the difficult week that followed. So many doubts, fears, and unknowns flooded my world. But I had the peace of God to carry me through. When I was recovering, I thought, Okay, God, what are you up to? But I knew God was in control and had a plan for my life. I knew something good could come out of this. I just didn’t know what that was at the time. I put my trust in God to get me through this and not let fear control my life. The hope I found as a Christian led me to overcome this, along with the amazing support of my family, the kindness of my community and having a passion for life. I had learned to surf when I was eight and had really gotten into surfing competitively. That passion I had for surfing was greater than my fear of sharks so I was determined to get back on the board. So that became my goal. Within a month, I got back in… Read More

  • Children Labor Unique Ministries

    WRITING A CHILDREN’S BOOK

    When my twin sister called me from Los Angeles to tell me that her 10-year-old son, Jackson, had a brain tumor. I was completely numb. It didn't seem real. Within 24 hours, he had gone from a basic MRI to the operating room. I felt far away and helpless at my home in Nashville. All I could do was pray. When I finally got to visit, Jackson wanted to show me his journals. They were filled with his strategies for coping on “MRI Day” which, for him, happened every three months. He had developed ways to calm himself when they put in the IV, stay still in the machine for long periods of time and not get scared by the noise of the machine. After seeing another little boy who was screaming and crying before his MRI scan, Jackson decided that he wanted to find a way to help other kids not be scared of MRIs. I said, "Why not write a children's book?" I didn’t actually know how to write or produce a children’s book, but Jackson was onboard, and I felt a tug in my heart urging me to make it happen. Rather than simply a cute story about Jackson’s experience, we wanted to create a tool that nurses, doctors and child life specialists could actually use with their patients. After I wrote the text, we ran it by lots of different people in the healthcare industry to be sure we got it right. It took more than three years, but I think it reflects the spirit of… Read More

  • Food Unique Ministries

    FAMILY DINNER NIGHTS

    During the last meal Jesus had on earth, He instructed us to remember Him by the very thing we indulge in every day without thought. Family dinner night started from a prophetic vision over my husband at our church’s retreat. Through hospitality, we could bring people in and have them leave differently. No pressure, no expectation, just a loving household. We prayed over what this could be and three things stood out: relationships, food and openness. The Lord revealed each person who should come. We also brought our kids into this, teaching them how to take their requests to God and ask for it. In these bold prayers, they specifically asked God to bring families with children and the Lord provided abundantly! Our dinner was now our mission field where conversation flowed easily, God-related or not. The Holy Spirit led. Our family never hid who we were: all broken people loved by the Lord. Community and college students from the University in our town knew they could expect honesty, from our current moods to large life questions to our adorably crazy kids. Our house is a bit messy for Family Dinner Night because that is how we normally have it. We were authentic. And that let others be, too. From these dinners also came our open-door policy where people knew they could stop by anytime. They felt safe to come with their questions, burdens, and celebrations. For us, hospitality goes beyond inviting people into our homes; we invite them into our lives. And through this openness comes true transformation.

  • Children Prayer

    A SECOND CHANCE AT A FAMILY

    My heart broke when I read the story of seven siblings that lost both parents in a horrific car crash. Their entire family was traveling with a moving trailer when they veered off the highway and flipped several times, throwing everyone from the car. All seven children, ranging in age from 1 to 13, sustained head injuries and had to be hospitalized. When released, they were put into a foster home since there weren't any family members able to take them. My heart was touched reading their story. It would be devastating for these children to be split up into different homes, especially after the heartbreak they had already endured. I could feel God moving and see how He had prepared both me and my husband for this moment. We had raised five biological children in a large six-bedroom house. It was now empty. We had discussed selling it, but we just couldn't bring ourselves to do that. Now I could see why. The Lord had also nudged us to become foster parents five years earlier so our hearts, and our lives, had been prepped. The day I read the story, I cried several times and knew what I wanted to do. I sent the story to my husband at work, fully expecting him to slam the idea that was stirring my heart. Later that night, he looked at me and said, "We need to adopt those kids." I immediately started calling DHS, saying we wanted to adopt all seven of them. We had to be vetted, interviewed, fill out… Read More

  • Church Activities Labor Unique Ministries

    THE MOBILE SANCTUARY

    I wanted to be the pastor of a church, but I ended up being an Uber and Lyft driver. Yet I wouldn’t change a thing. I now truly believe I’m just pastoring a very different kind of church and this is exactly where God wants me. I always dreamed of having my own church plant and I prepared for it. As an undergraduate student, I majored in the Bible with a minor in Christian Education. I then went on to get a Master’s degree in Biblical studies. But when I graduated, my dreams did not materialize. The church plant didn’t work out. To make ends meet, I started driving for Uber and Lyft. I could have felt sorry for myself, but felt God was calling me to love every single person that got in my car. So I just tried to display the goodness of God to my riders. Every day, I felt challenged to plant seeds for the Lord with each rider. When I pick up someone, I start with general conversation. As we talk, I can feel the Holy Spirit giving me something to ask that person. And usually, the floodgates open. There are a lot of broken people in the world, and so many just need a safe place to talk. I’ve given rides to alcoholics, drug addicts, prostitutes, atheists, sick people, people with broken marriages, you name it. I’ve bought people meals to help them feel loved, cleaned them up after they passed out and had hour-long discussions after we reach their destination. I try to… Read More

  • Children Labor Senior Citizens

    ANGEL WINGS OF LOVE

    I lost my baby girl when she was just three days old. I think about her every day and I have for 44 years. When it happened, there weren't a lot of people I could reach out to, and hospitals weren't really equipped to help you deal with the grief and how to say goodbye. I relied on my Christian faith to get me through those very difficult days. Unfortunately, this kind of heartbreak happens a lot more frequently than people realize. So about six years ago, I wanted to do something for parents that were experiencing this pain. To help them in any small way to make parting with their baby just a little less painful. So I started taking donated wedding dresses, cutting them up and making gowns for infants that pass away prematurely or right after birth. It's something beautiful to put on the child for his or her burial. I did it for a friend that lost a child. And then another. There were a number of friends that heard about what I was doing, word started to spread and a couple friends joined me. People began donating their wedding dresses to us, and we made quite a few of these infant gowns. We packaged them in a nice box and included a crochet blanket, a hat, booties and a vest for baby boys. We also put a Mommy and Me bracelet set in each box along with a scripture verse and prayer card. We formed relationships with hospitals and funeral homes, and gave them a… Read More

  • Labor Unique Ministries Verbalizing the Gospel

    NATION’S BOUTIQUE

    I was at the funeral for a two-year-old child of a dear friend. The child's father preached an amazing eulogy, and said 93% of Christians never share their faith. I was so moved. That's when I prayed and asked God to show me a way to make an impact for His Kingdom. I felt God leading me to start a line of women's clothing that I designed, manufactured and sold out of my home. I wanted these clothes to be different and meaningful, so I put a label in these clothes with a message that had resonated with me for several years: "He will never leave you or forsake you." The clothing line started to really take off and it became too consuming; it was hard to find a balance between my personal and business life. So I ended up taking a break. After a while, I kept getting nudged by God to return but to do it differently. I could see His hands in opening up an opportunity for me to find a small warehouse where I sold the women's clothing items and accessories, and eventually a retail store called Nation's Boutique. The word Nation's comes from Matthew 28:11 where Jesus says for us to make disciples of all nations. Placing God's Word in each of our clothes is our way of doing this. The theme in our store is "Do Beautiful." I want women to know they are beautiful and made in His image. Women sometimes think it's the clothes that make them beautiful. But it's your inner… Read More

  • Labor Unique Ministries

    THE STREETS OF HOPE

    For several years, I battled an eating disorder that consumed my days. I was dieting or binging, and always hating who I was. One day, I promised a friend that I would come and serve the homeless with her, since I've always had a desire to help the homeless. Instead of going with her, I went to the beach, crying and feeling sorry for myself. I texted her to let her know I could not make it because of how sad I was. She replied, “Come down here and shine the light that God has placed inside you.” I consented. On the way down, I hated who I was and believed I had nothing to offer to anyone on those streets. However, when I arrived, everything shifted. I loved being there. I had a moment when I decided to dedicate my time there every week. After a few months, I felt God telling me to use my gift of cutting hair to bless those on the streets. So we built a haircutting ministry that services the homeless each month. We also started hosting events where we would have people using their gifts in cooking, chiropractic, massages, and much more to bless the homeless. Then I felt Him say bless the children, so we began a birthday ministry for the kids on the streets to celebrate them. We let them know that they are seen and loved, even when their parents could not afford to celebrate. Last year, I was voted as President of the organization to one day build… Read More

  • Labor Special Needs Unique Ministries

    GRACE CERAMICS

    I’ve been hand throwing pottery for nine years, beginning in high school. It has always come naturally to me and is a meditative, sweet time for me to quietly sit and talk to God. Being behind the pottery wheel, throwing clay, is one of my favorite steps in the entire process of making a mug or bowl. I love watching the dramatic change it goes through in just a few minutes. I’m reminded of Isaiah 64:8, which says, “Yet you, Lord, are our Father. We are the clay, you are the potter; we are all the work of your hand.” Just as God molds us into His people, He can transform our lives, passions, and jobs into something for His glory. So is the case for Grace Ceramics. I was selling my pottery at farmer’s markets, breweries, and coffee shops. However, instead of just profiting off my ceramics, I wanted my business to have a larger purpose. So I teamed up with a friend who was preparing to go on a mission trip around the world but needed financial help. I made dozens of beautiful, unique mugs with the world engraved on them. For every piece of pottery that I sold, 50% of the proceeds went toward my friend’s mission fund. I was able to raise almost $500 for her! Months later, another friend was raising money for a mission trip. I did the same thing and helped her reach her financial goal. It’s incredible using a talent of mine to support others! Each mug, bowl, and planter that I… Read More

  • Church Activities Labor

    SERVING ANY WAY I CAN

    I am a transplant patient. So there are many days I feel weak or tired. This could give me a great excuse not to do much, but God has been too good for me to sit still! I absolutely love my church and I dedicate so much of my time to helping wherever there is a need. You might call me a “Jill Of All Trades.” There is so much to be done to spread the love of God! I help organize rummage sales, give tours of the daycare, greet visitors to our church, pray with people at the altar and cook for church dinners. I love to volunteer because God has placed it on my heart to serve. Every ministry I am a part of yields fruit because God is in it. I do not want to be in the spotlight; rather I want God to be glorified through me. I wasn’t always a good person. I come from the world of drugs and alcohol. I was very much a part of the “party scene.” But God delivered me out of a dark place. I give Him all the glory and honor. I try to show as many people as possible the hope that I have found in Jesus. Sometimes when I give a tour of the church daycare, I feel the urge to pray with people. The presence of the Lord can sweep in and touch anyone, anywhere at any time. I thank God that He has used me in many ways to help bring people into the… Read More

  • Prayer Senior Citizens

    WHY I’M STILL HERE

    I didn’t understand. I was 71 years old. She was only 42. I kept asking God, “Why, Lord? Why her and not me?” She was my only daughter. She fought cancer and beat it but died after complications in the hospital. It should’ve been me. I’d lived my life. She left behind a family. Three years later, I had lost my husband and three dear friends. We used to play Scrabble on Tuesdays. I lost my oldest son in 2012. He would’ve been 62 that November. I was 86. It should've been me. I’ve thought a lot about the loss of my loved ones. I’ve lost several others—each one younger than I. At first, it seems so unfair that I’ve lived into my old age, and so many never saw old age. Few saw grey hairs. Fewer saw their kids become adults. I spend time in prayer everyday. When my aide comes in the morning, we pray and reflect. It’s important to me to be able to ask God for His intervention in my life and in the lives of others. I pray for family, my Sunday School class and for two of my daughter’s friends who are now facing cancer themselves. I have seen the Lord work. I have seen lives transformed, trials overcome, and sad turned to glad. He is so good to us. One day, it finally occurred to me: perhaps He has me here still---though I can’t walk or stand---to be an intercessor for those around me. And that day, I found peace. My old age… Read More

  • Children Unique Ministries

    LUCY’S LOVE BLANKETS

    We all need extra love and comfort sometimes, especially if you’re a kid going through a difficult time. That’s why I started “Lucy’s Love Blankets.” I make and ship flannel blankets for free to kids going through an illness, a divorce in their family, or the loss of a loved one. Anyone needing a little extra love. It all started three years ago when I was eight. My mom had taught me how to sew and I thought I’d make a homemade blanket for a friend for her birthday. She loved it and I really enjoyed making it. So I asked my mom if I could make a blanket for a random child having a tough time, and give it away on Instagram. We posted something and got 16 heartbreaking stories from kids, each requesting a blanket. My mom told me to choose one, and I just could not stand the thought of any of these kids going without a blanket. So I made one for all 16 of those children and shipped it to them. People heard about what I was doing and started requesting one for a child they knew. So I started sewing. And kept sewing because I kept getting requests. Folks started chipping in money to help us cover the cost of the fabric and the shipping which really started to add up. Everything is free to the family that receives the blanket. It takes me anywhere from two to three hours to make a blanket. But what is really cool is that I know the… Read More

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