A few years ago, we stood together for this family photo and we couldn’t help but notice how perfectly we measured from one head to another. I’m glad Mabyn captured that moment, because that equal distance lasted little more than a week. Moments of measurable “perfection” are seldom. Most of life is perfectly imperfect, requiring that we use rightful measuring methods — rightful frame of mind with faithful action steps. With the changing seasons of ministry, business, homeschool, and daily living, keeping rightful perspective can be tough — like last week!
Around every corner, something was being measured.
My kids: Both were being assessed for year-end scores after many weeks of what felt like an early summer break. We hosted four days of assessments here at Cre8Home, and I gave my two students
the leftover spots after placing the other families in their requested
times. That put Sadie literally rolling out of bed to walk upstairs and
“do her best,” and J. Michael didn’t begin testing until nearly 7:00
that night after helping Mike with outdoor labor around the property. I was NOT feeling like this was a proud Mama Moment. But alas! I knew that these year-end test scores could not possibly reveal the personal growth in
each one as we’ve watched them excel in their toughest personal
ministry challenges this year.
How do you measure that?
doTERRA: Flights, long solo drives, classes, and trips had been sandwiched in
between the ministry activities here. I was in need of rest, hydration,
sleep and refreshment. The motion stopped, and now I needed to check all of the statistics and standings from Diamond Club and turn in meticulous receipts. This documentation was not just showing end-of-the-month details, but end-of-the-whole-experience ones, and suddenly this process felt invasive — like someone was retelling a story while missing all of the color and meaning. Diamond Club business statistics cannot reveal the meaningful action
steps taken by a recovering addict after that post-class conversation. Mileage numbers cannot tell how the no-show class led to a life-changing one-on-one
with the host who battles illness and balances pain around the clock because she’s allergic to an ingredient in synthetic medication, and found some hope. On multiple
occasions, I heard the phrase, “Hope in a Box” as people pointed to my
essential oils and began to imagine another possibility of self-care.
Not making it into the Top 100 in the final standings was not a
just representation of the successes that happened during those
strenuous four-months because…
How do you measure that?
Cre8: The next season of discussions between the bank, the owner, and Mike were happening the week I came home. We are facing the ever-more-pressing demand to take on the full
ownership of this property, or move off. The bank is still asking more
than anyone will pay. The owner wants out; the bank wants it off the
books. We have been consistent with our payments; however we still are not able to walk into a purchase agreement
while it remains upside-down in value.
We purchased a new appraisal… it returned with a huge drop of value on the home (YAY!), but
a large increase on each land acre (NO!), which still just shuffles the
dollars around to ask the same thing. We had hoped for a NEW
measurement — one that we can rightfully act upon — and yet all of the
number changes still led us all right back to the exact same place, and the numbers on paper cannot possibly tell the whole story. Everything inside of me wanted to scream…
How do you measure that?
Emotions were clouding my best thoughts; now THAT, I could measure!
The Land: While in this start season (now 3 years—can you believe it?), a local farmer asked the owner if he could use a small piece of land in the back corner for “a few” animals, but as time has marched on, he has expanded his fence measurements, adding many more animals to be butchered, and has created a sweet deal for himself while in the silence of this wait. He tells people that the land is not good for anything except what he is using it for…
How do you measure that?
Well, it is TIME for us to measure up with the funds to move forward, and to move onto this land ALL of the things that will help the area families grow together and serve the community. We are ready to replace the Wiley Farm Road sign with Wide Open Way. Immeasurable and wonderful things ARE (and have been) taking place here, and the wonder continues to increase. This land has GREAT value, and is being used for far more than feed and fertilization!
Frosty the Oil Man: Before we began activity on this property, seed money was given to us by an oil company owner named Frosty. That $40,000 gift has remained miraculously like the widow’s oil in the bible story. Her oil would always refill as she poured it out in use. Each fiscal year, we hover right around that exact amount, and every year, we are amazed! We know it is because of God’s miraculous Provision!
And how do you measure that!
Do you want to know why our family decided that four months of Diamond Club travel was worth it? The Lord has provided a different kind of oil company to us, and right now through serving others along personal wellness roads, that business has grown. It is incredibly beautiful, and reaching the Gold position of leadership just over five months ago provided for us a sustaining income! It also qualified me to become a trainer of The Aroma Touch Technique, which has become a prayer ministry as well as a physical aide to so many.
With the business growth taking place, the kids and I had an “ah-ha!” one day. If we can grow our oils business to the Blue Diamond position, then WE can basically provide the ministry with a Frosty-sized donation almost monthly! We become the “oil company owners” who can pour into this ministry and see it grow! We would love to see how God would refill the oil as it pours out in use to the community!
Saying “yes” to the Diamond Club venture, we imagined with excitement the reality of the One Life Studio in honor of 21-year-old Davis Inghram who left this world with his creative legacy of love to be refilled. We could easily envision the wholeness center, the walking trails, the tiny homes, the artist studio, the wedding venue, the family gathering spaces, the gardens, and so… much… more. All of these spaces being filled and filled again. With multiplied provision, these things become tangible offerings. People will be walking into what was once a vision, and it will refill and pour out, refill, and pour out. Yes! This land is purposed for more!
We have great visionaries here with us. We need funds to bring the plans to life.
It is time for us to move ahead. There is so much happening with the families
here, we just don’t want to go back to “what was.” Where would that even
be? Mike and I ask ourselves often if we could even do the regular
Americanized “church” way again. What we’ve tasted and seen has “ruined” us
in the best of ways! We are seeing people BE the church, from life to
life and home to home, within the community, and it is the most exhilarating experience of our
We have a doTERRA business for three reasons (It’s impossible to put an order to those three things, because order would vary depending on how you measure, and they seem
quite equally important to me!):
* to walk alongside people who are healing
* to provide for our family
* to fund this ministry!
The certifications I’ve been receiving provide another form of measurement, and those papers represent passions and pursuits. People are tired of being ill, weak, emotionally spent, frail, and unwell. We are NOT beings with compartmentalized sections of ourselves. We are spiritual, emotional, physical persons who need a surrendered mind, will, and a balanced well-being, a connection with the God of Creation — the Healer and Sustainer — and a healed connection with self and with other people. I have discovered my niche in this world of wholeness, and I am looking forward to practicing the holistic health coach modalities and methods with others who are ready to pursue a life of freedom and healing.
What I am NOT: a doctor or the expert.
What I am: a caring person who is willing to help someone discover her story and create her own goals to heal areas and achieve desired life-style results. We can all help each other heal. A holistic health coach helps a person examine themselves, and through accountability and in looking forward, the possibilities are endless!
So, that’s why oils. Just like everything else, they’re… to CREATE.
For three years, we’ve battled the question, “Should we run a fund-raising campaign?” But the thought just makes us cringe. We don’t need hundreds of thousands and millions of dollars. We’ve already seen what God can do with so little! We do however need tens of thousands, and when we have that coming in, it will change everything!
Mike and I have been analyzed and measured for years by other people in ministry. Questions from insecure leaders like, “How will that idea promote the church?” We see that families need it, and we think in return, “WHAT church!?”
THIS church, or THE Church?
Again, it’s all in how you measure what are you measuring.
So it’s nice to be in a place where we have support through a board of directors, accountability through incredible families, and the covering and love of the Pastor who married us and knows us so well. With the desire to earn trust, we have broken and poured out every ounce of who we are to lead with love those we serve. We do not measure with hierarchy. We see homeless men bring scriptural insight each week, and watch children breathe life into every gathering through the Holy Spirit at work in them. It’s up to families to dig deeper in conversations at home. People are learning to eat Daily Bread again, and not try to thrive on it weekly. People do not have to hold an intellectual ministry degree in order for God to use them with power. God is amazing like that!
The other day, a friend from a large company that services churches with books and curricula threw out a question on Facebook; he was looking into how kids are involved (or not) in a main service with adults. He gave 3 options and suggested that someone may have an option 4.
We are living in option 4.
Our friend’s response to my comment was that this option would blow up the traditional church. Mike and I don’t believe it would blow it up, but perhaps it could explode!
Again, it’s all in how we measure.
“Living Life where Every ONE matters” is a thread you’ve seen over and over again here in this blog, at our Cre8 Gatherings, and if you are part of my Serving to the Last Drop doTERRA team, I hope you’ve recognized it there as well.
Instead of “How many enrollments did I have this month?” it’s all about the ONE…
Instead of “What were our attendance numbers?” it’s all about the ONE…
Instead of “How well did I perform on that test?” it’s all about the ONE…
Many people have wanted to show support, and for your comments and prayers, we are so thankful! Others have asked how to show financial support, and for that, we are everso grateful!
Please know that everything given to this ministry is put through a percentage-based budget. Mike’s salary is a low part of that percentage base. The counsel he offers is free. The work he does and the appointments he fulfills are at no charge to people who come our way. Last year, the salary to our family was around $5000 (five thousand dollars) for the year, paid at the end of the year.
For now, we DO live in Cre8 Home and you may ask about that. We have a constant amount of activity through this home every day of the week, and believe me, this is not a private lake-community lifestyle… it is worth every moment that some may view as inconvenience (even when I felt like I was about to hit the wall after the travel, the lives and changes here are what fuels us!). We love it, and we wouldn’t trade it. Those revolving door moments are where the IMMEASURABLE reveals its greatest worth!
So, how have we been living as a family financially?
A few years ago (you can read about it in an old blog post), we were
down to the last $750 in our bank account. All of our savings had gone into starting Cre8, and we thought it was about to end. Mike prayed, and he walked
to the mailbox that very day to find a royalty check that had been “lost within a
company merger.” It reached us YEARS late (but right on time), and it was
for just over $9000; we were able to breathe!
Now the doTERRA business has grown, and throughout all of 2015, we have maintained the Gold level of leadership, which has provided a legitimate full-time salary for which we are INCREDIBLY grateful!!! So, while we see provision every month in a steady way, we still know that it is not doTERRA providing for us, it is still the Lord. There is only ONE Provider. I deeply enjoy this season of provision, and it is allowing me to walk alongside people on a wholeness pursuit first and foremost, and God provides immeasurably as a result.
I have women on my doTERRA team that I am wanting to serve to Gold so that THEY will have the full-time salaries for their various family needs. It’s so beautiful, because by serving them, we can also serve this ministry forward. We see so much of God’s design in this business, as it is impossible to be self-serving. NO ONE can do a business like this alone; it would not happen as a lone ranger, and I believe that is a most measurable point!
To dream of the potential of doTERRA was easy for our family because we already had the greater-than-ourselves reason for the funds.
The growth of this business is not for us.
I am confident in the fact that we have proven our love for others time and time again.
And with every opportunity that comes our way to serve again, we see it as a means to live surrender, with gratitude, for all that God has done for us.
It really is that simple.
So let me wrap this up and thank you for reading to the end!
1) We are amazed that God has kept us able to begin a ministry on land we do not own and to do things we weren’t sure people would even want.
2) Now we can’t go back! Lives are alive, and people are spreading that life to others who want to be more than they believed they could be.
3) We need to own the land.
4) It’s time to build.
5) In order for that to happen, we need help.
So how can you get involved?
* tax-deductible donations to the ministry directly
* joining a self-care journey with me through my Serving to the Last Drop doTERRA team
Mike has plans, spreadsheets, and as many details as you would seek out if you ask him!
We are surrounded with fantastic people! Fantastic leaders! And it’s been a beautiful beginning to be a part of.
If you would want to give a donation to Wide Open Ministries, we are a not-for-profit group, and we’d love your support!
Here is a direct link to the property page on the website. It has a link to donate:
Or checks payable to “Wide Open Ministries” can be mailed to:
2740 Wiley Farm Rd.
Kernersville, NC 27284
If, however, you aren’t one to support in that way, here’s another real option:
If you want to become part of the essential oils movement, or revamp your vitamin line with one that is changing people from the inside out… if for whatever reason (to use, to share, or to even build your own business), you’ve ever thought, “Man! I really need to see what that’s all about!” Please ask me! I would find SO. MUCH. JOY. in helping you with your own self-care.
We have some very special people we are trying to build up and see grow within this organization. I am happy to private message you a short summary of their stories, and YOU can decide for yourself where you’d like your purchases with doTERRA to count! We are helping others, and in doing so, together we will fund this ministry!
We’ll provide you with regular updates so you can see that on the other side of your donation, vitamin, or oil bottle, that lives are being changed!
And with whatever you do, let’s create new ways to measure the things that truly matter most.
Let’s find out How to Measure THAT!