This past week we just celebrated our 4-year anniversary of when God placed the vision of Embrace Grace in our hearts. We had no idea what we were doing, we just had a burden for girls that were single and pregnant – we wanted to encourage them, cheer them on, and honor them for choosing life. As a leader, we have learned a lot, but the most important thing we learned is to wait for God’s timing. I’m one of those people that just gets an idea and runs with it, ESPECIALLY when it comes to EG. I can’t help it, I just get so excited. But I have learned (yes, the hard way in some cases) to wait on God’s timing and listen to His voice in ALL things. There were a lot of times I let my excitement get the best of me and I would run ahead of God instead of behind.
A couple years ago, God started whispering to me and Salina that EG would be a non-profit someday. Now it’s in my fleshly nature (and how God made me), to just do what I need to do to go ahead and make that happen, but this time, I was deliberate in waiting on Him. I am learning to have discipline in my passions – to make sure in everything, I’m on God’s timing and not my own – because the good stuff happens when it’s in His. Over the past few years, my husband has offered to donate all funds necessary in order to do the legal work of becoming a 501c3 and I really felt like that although I think my husband is SO sweet to offer and to believe in EG, I wanted it to be so obvious that God’s timing was right and He would provide the money from another source.
So a little over a year had gone by and we have just been continuing to lead Gateway’s Embrace Grace and taking phone calls/emails from churches that we’ve never heard of, asking what are we doing? What curriculum do we teach? How can they start the same program in their own church? It was just bubbling up and God is doing such awesome things. He’s always provided exactly enough for our baby showers and extra events, but we just kept waiting for that obvious sign that it was time to move forward with the non profit.
About a month ago, we got our first “sign.” We got a really big donation out of nowhere that more than covered the amount needed to do the non profit. Taking that as a sign, we start looking for lawyers that can help us with the process and realizing that their fees were VERY expensive. But we didn’t have to look long because a CPA came to us (yes, we didn’t even have to ask – how awesome is God?) and said that she would like to donate her time/services to help set us up as a non-profit. Awesome! And then to just make it SO obvious that there was NO question whatsoever, Salina was at PINK prayer last weekend and a woman she had never met before came to her and said, “Can I ask you a question, are you trying to save money for a mission trip?” and Salina answered, “hmmm … no not a mission trip. I don’t have plans right now to attend a trip like that.” And the lady then said, “Well then is there a mission that you are a part of or trying to raise money for?” Salina answered with a smile, “I am a part of a group called Embrace Grace and we help single and pregnant girls. We have been working on our mission statement and we’re sending off for our 501c3 this week.” The lady then said, “How much does it cost to make that happen?” Salina told her the amount (which is not cheap) and the lady pulls out her checkbook and writes Embrace Grace a check for the exact amount needed to do the 501c3.
So God has made it clear, it’s time! Embrace Grace, Inc. is almost official and the 501c3 is pending status!
Our Mission Statement:
Embrace Grace is an organization (pending non-profit status) formed for the purpose of providing emotional, practical and spiritual support for single young girls that find themselves with an unplanned pregnancy. The primary goal of Embrace Grace is to empower churches across the nation to be a safe and non-judging place for the girls to run to when they find out they are pregnant, instead of the last because of shame and guilt. We provide curriculum for the churches as well as offer grants to organizations that may not be able to afford the expenses involved with helping young women with crisis pregnancies. If the church, the body of Christ, would join together to support these girls that choose life, young moms will be more open to not abort their baby. Whether they keep their baby or place for adoption, Embrace Grace is a support system for them as they begin their journey of being a young mother or blessing another family with their baby. Emotionally and spiritually healthy mommies parent emotionally and spiritually healthy babies. Through the Embrace Grace program, lives are saved and generations are being changed. God loves these babies and their mommies and we do too.
In other big news, God has also made it clear that it’s time to write our own curriculum. We have LOVED using the Embrace Grace book by Liz Curtis Higgs – it has worked well for us but we have so many ideas and see what is needed in a study, we are going for it. We are teaming up with some awesome princess warrior writers: Irini Fambro, Nancy Smith and Kerrie Oles.
God is so good. I’m so thankful that I get to be used to do His work. I seriously have so much fun. Seriously.
Dreaming Big … it’s the only way I know how to.
Is there anything you have been waiting on God’s timing for, even though you felt you were ready? Did you ever go too fast like I did and then it come back to bite you in the end? Leave us a comment!
:: amy ford ::