Today in Fort Worth, it's a sunny 81° but last week it got down to 0°! As you have likely heard, most families here were affected in some way. If it wasn't you directly, it was your neighbors, your family or friends, or your local church or businesses.
What does a winter storm have to do with art? I had a lot of time to think about all the ways and I'd love to share if you'll allow me.
First, I was reminded to always be prayed up. Natural disasters and harsh weather can spring up quickly and I have to admit, I had not thought about praying for our church's building or it ever having issues due to the weather. But pipes froze & burst causing a huge mess and costly repairs. I know many will think, "Sure, pray about the weather and homes and buildings, but about art?". I listen to a lot of business coaches that teach many wonderful things but for me, none of that advice matters if I'm not praying about my art and my business which was started so I could help other women have a place to go to paint with a group of other ladies, to find relief from stress by doing so, and to find a welcoming and safe space with encouragement while they're there. My business has become almost 100% online, but the mission is the same. I pray every day for the ladies who are in my group, for ideas of what they would like, and for myself to persevere through this early stage of trying to grow the membership. Growing a small business is hard and I can't do it alone. I need God every day to keep me healthy & going in the right direction even when it's not providing an income. I need him to protect it from harm so I can fulfill the mission he has for me with it.
The second thing I learned is to be better prepared. Had we gone up and winterized the facility, maybe we could have avoided the pipes bursting. It's an old building, and we'll never know. But I learned being proactive is always the best plan. I missed a business deadline because of the ice storm and if I had taken care of what was due ahead of the due date, that would not have happened! Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today! (What smart person said that?)
And finally, I learned to be purposeful. I always want to use my gifts and talents for God's glory and when the flooding happened at our church I sprung into "what can I do" mode. I immediately thought of selling my art to raise money. I've had some success with raising money for Breast Cancer Research and the Alzheimer's Association so why not try to help our church? To many people, a $2,500 deductible is nothing, but to our small church, it's a lot. So since I can't do the physical work due to a back issue, I did what I can do and prayed and created art. I painted up some wood ornaments and created an Etsy shop in two days. Using your particular talents and gifts is all we have to do to be a blessing to others.
And here's the cool thing about what I learned. By being prayed up and by being better prepared, it will allow us to spring into action and be purposeful when tough times hit. And they will again!
As always, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the subject! Leave them below.
Grace to you!
You can see the ornaments by clicking the image below