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Big Decision

August 26, 2009

I had a moment yesterday.  A moment with God.  It was absolutely as crazy as it sounds.

If you’ve read anything about me, you’ll know that I call myself a passionate lover of God.  In reality, it’s more of a statement of what I’m trying to become, but I’m growing more in my relationship with Him every day and that’s the only way to get there.  Last night I was reading from one of my favorite authors, John Ortberg, and a passage really hit me between the eyes.  I am telling you, God was speaking to me through those sentences.  I felt it.  I knew it.

I’ve been soaking up wisdom from Ortberg’s book entitled “God is Closer Than You Think” which I would highly recommend to anyone.  In the final chapter, “The Hedge”, Ortberg starts to describe the wonder of a God that came down to live in our backyard.  He’s here, with his power and might available to all who choose to use it.  A dangerous prayer he encourages his readers to use goes like this: “Make up there come down here.”  He tells us to answer the question, “Where do I want to see God’s presence and power break into my world?  Where would I especially like God to use me to make things down here run the way they do up there?” 

Already my mind was reeling with thoughts of the ways I would love to see Him manifest His power, not only in me but in my community and my state and my country and my world.  Ortberg then tells a story about three women that started praying that little prayer and found themselves drawn to saving all the babies in Africa!  Their pastor asked them to think of ways they could do a little starter project to impact some babies right in their community.  Long story short, these women prayed for God to bring heaven down to Earth, and it came down in the form of 1,200 people volunteering to plant trees, tile floors and paint murals at a local school in a destitute area.  Heaven came down in the form of Starbucks donating coffee to all the volunteers.  In the form of Home Depot donating $10,000 in equipment.  In the form of a local woman donating $20,000 of playground material.  God came down.

Here is the paragraph that got me:

The kingdom is breaking into this world.
Every time you have a chunk of money and decide to give sacrifically to somebody who is hungry or homeless or poor –
The kingdom is breaking into this world.

I immediately just knew.  I knew what God was asking me to do.  And I am going to do it.

From now until the end of this business I’m starting, I will be giving 50% of my proceeds to my dad’s non-profit organization.  Now, I realize this sounds a bit like nepotism, but it’s not.  My dad has just started a brand new non-profit, and it focuses on providing a myriad of services to the hungry, homeless and poor in our local area.   Say what?!  Yeah, you heard me.  His company is preparing to finance the purchase of a large warehouse/office building that will house a food pantry, furniture and clothing bank, warming center and soup kitchen for area homeless folks, and an office for a local halfway-house ministry.  There will be offices for a chaplain.  There will be volunteers to assist with resume building, personal finance training, procurement of home loans, legal issues, etc.   All of this housed in H.O.P.E. Center (which stands for “Housing, Opportunities and Provisions for Everyone”).  All of this aimed to eliminate poverty in Macomb County, Michigan.  All of this an opportunity to give sacrificially to the hungry, homeless and poor

And here’s what I think will happen when I start faithfully giving that 50% every single time I work for a client: God will bring me all the clients I need to fulfill his purpose and raise the money he needs for the non-profit.  That’s how I think God rolls.  He allows more responsibility for those who have proven faithful.  He gives more blessing to those that turn that blessing around for His purposes.  I don’t want all the blessings… I want my passion for photography to turn into more than a money-maker for me.  I want it to turn into a difference-maker for the kingdom.

I know right?  Totally crazy, but I feel like I’m being called to step out on a limb and do this.  I know God is in it.  And if I’m wrong and the business can’t survive, so what?  A deserving organization got a little extra money for a while.  But I don’t think that’s what will happen.  I think God is going to take this and allow me to make exactly twice as much money as he needs me to donate.   And as I am faithful in the little things, He will be faithful to bring blessing to H.O.P.E. Center.  Yippee!

I feel like I’m going to burst with excitement.  I feel like I might fall off my chair.  Honestly, I feel a little like throwing up in my mouth.  But not because it’s bad.  Because it’s just so good.

I can’t wait to tell my dad 🙂

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