family news

March 30, 2011

So, I have talked a lot about us struggling financially. 

I have some news.

This is what our bank account looked like the day Chris walked in and quit his job last week. His last day was today.

Photobucket

No, I am not joking. 
And yes those are NEGATIVE signs.

Chris quit his job. no savings. negative signs in the bank account.

I took a screen shot of it so that everyone could see what we are dealing with here. 

We both felt like God was asking him to quit. It's just scary when you are already struggling to let go of that tiny bit of security.

But when God tells you to move, you move.

So here we are.

Student loans, 4 people on individual health insurance, mortgage, gas, food, diapers, electricity, internet, business loan...I am sure I am forgetting something....
but the exciting thing is that I believe you all will get to watch first hand God bring us out of this mess.

From Chris Himself:



A New Start.





Oh where? Oh where do I begin?

I'll start here...

After Casey and I got married in 2007 we felt called to start something that would generate revenue for our family, provide a base for both of our "artist careers" and be a part of a bigger picture of what God wanted to do in and through us. So Casey, being a Children's Art Teacher, and I decided to start A Little Artsy, an Art School for kids. Everything was going great, we were doing what we loved and we were really making a huge impact on the community where our business was located. Then we had our first baby - Aiden. We had so much fun taking him up to our studio everyday and I even made a nursery for him in the back room. But working mostly 14 hour days, we quickly realized that that was no place for him to grow up.
Fast forward 1 1/2 years... I accepted a job at a start-up media company in November of 2009 as Senior Editor/Director. I was, in a sense, at the top of the food chain within the company and was respected by my co-workers and boss. But from the beginning, something always felt a little off. I never really felt like it was a place where God intended me to be. I would sometimes think that I had made a wrong turn somewhere in there and worried I may have gone off the dirt path and onto a superhighway with all the security and comfort of a full time, nice salary, sweet benefits, decent 401K, job. I was a freelance filmmaker for 8 years. I never felt the Lord leading me to take a full time job. I was so afraid, with a business, wife, infant, mortgage, student loan, life insurance policy etc... that somehow only I was able to provide for my family and God was busy dealing with tsunami's and earthquakes. 
So I took my "career" and "financial future" and "security" into my own hands and strutted around like a little fool with a new yo-yo. 
I fought with God for 1 1/2 years about what He wanted for my life and what I wanted. Or thought I wanted. Country Club membership, a 75205 Zip code, an incredible School District, a SUV with less that 150k miles, a lake house, couple ski-boats and so on. I was on my way to a total comfortable and utterly (pause) MEANINGLESS life. Thank You God for coming to my rescue. 
Two months ago, through several different people, specific work related encounters and lots of pacing around in my backyard praying, I heard the Lord (and all it took was a whisper) calling me away. Thats all I heard. Just away. To Quit. 
I was told by many to "make sure you have a back up plan" and "you have a family now so you can't just quit" and was actually told "You are an (expletive) idiot If you think you can get a better job". That really hurt. Especially when the voice and hand of God was leading me so strongly away. It was becoming more clear every day to step out on faith and just pull an Abraham. 

Technology has changed so much in the last 2 years all my equipment is out-of-date. 
I have no camera, no computer and no prospects. I am, for the first time in my life, completely and desperately dependent upon the Lord. I believe God will provide me with opportunity to buy a camera and computer, and He will bring the clients. I'm trusting in Hebrews 11 - Sure of what I hope for, and certain of what I do not see. With negative numbers in our bank account, I am confidently placing myself and my family in a position of a total "God must move" lifestyle. Selling everything if we must, holding fast to His Promises, seeking His direction, and surrendering my will and my dreams to Him. In return, all I desire is Christ Glorified in and through me. I want Him to use the gifts He gave me for his Glory, not mine. For His Kingdom, not mine.





So my last day at my eight to six was today. And I feel great. I feel great because I believe I am obeying God. That I am following after Him. That He alone knows the way. That He alone knows how He alone will provide for my family. That He alone will bring business and opportunity. That He alone will heal my wounded spirit broken by ugly, cold, selfish, hardened hearts. 

So here I am world. One wife and two kids. Armed with a camera and a little creativity. What will you bring me today? What adventure will unveil before me? What challenge will tempt me inside? Bring it on. I'm ready now. Motivated and educated by my past, I'm determined to walk boldly toward the little lamp lighting my path. One step at a time. Falling forward. I'm moving on. 

Stay tuned. I'm expecting God to split seas. 

Photobucket




55 comments:

  1. Oh sweet girl, praying for you in this season and excited to see what God does with your family. I've so been there when my husband followed God's call to plant a new church this year and I know the joys, heartaches, and other crazy emotions that go into it. But know what? God is faithful. His provision is always timely and it just gives us more the reason to praise Him. Can't wait to follow the journey He has placed you on. xo

    ReplyDelete
  2. wow. just wow!

    amen that you both can be so bold and so brave and so faithful.

    the best part of this is what you said casey.. people are watching. people who read this blog and the people who said mean nasty things to him about quitting his job.. everyone will be watching and like you said.. they will get to watch first hand as God brings you out of this mess.

    awesome.

    i will write your names on my bathroom mirror so i can remember to pray for you.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Okay, reading your post to my husband just teared up my eyes. Wow.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Oh Casey...we are so in the same boat. I wish we lived closer so we could visit you guys and just pray for God's will to be done. Maybe we'll just move! LOL..seriously though...I know what you are going through. I walked from my job after Elijah was born. Though on paper it didn't make sense...we knew it was God's plan. I am also writing your name on my bathroom mirror. You are always in my prayers. Can't wait to see what God does and how He is glorified through this! You guys are so faithful to his will. Praying for peace through it! xoxoxoxoxo

    ReplyDelete
  5. we went to church tonight to hear a guest speaker. he said he'd tried every equation for his life: god + his stuff =? god + his own plans =? god + his job and car and world =? but he has come to learn the "Job principle", that God + NOTHING = EVERYTHING. i think you're in an incredibly exciting spot. be patient and believe, guys. praying for your family...

    ReplyDelete
  6. What faith! I'm excited to see how the Lord uses you both. You are in my prayers!

    ReplyDelete
  7. beautiful! praying right now for God to continue to bless you with faith & confidence in Him, even in the face of a negative bank balance. you're so right that God does not work in the ways that the world understands... keep Listening, and i'll keep praying! : )

    ReplyDelete
  8. wow. what a leap of faith. i am encouraged by you and Chris. This is NOT what society dictates us to do. But we are individuals, individuals with passions, desires, that need to be realized our we can welt, fading flower kind of way. I am happy that Chris is taking charge of his life {in a different kind of way} before that last petal fell. I hope and pray there is light at the end of the tunnel, and soon.

    xoxo

    ReplyDelete
  9. I love you. . . and your faith. . . God told Abram to move. . . and he obeyed. . . and he was BLESSED! :-) Can't wait to see how God BLESSES you, sweet friend! :-)

    ReplyDelete
  10. Your family is in my heart and prayers. God is bigger than it all. Isn't it amazing to know even when we are having a hard time having faith... we have access to the Faith of God. Of course from reading this I know you believe in His supernatural ability to turn things around.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Amen and amen...this can be a truly scary place, but I believe that God is right there with you all. Thank you for sharing and being so transparent. I love your blog and I just started blogging myself. Thanks to you and so many of the other amazing faith-filled bloggers out there. Jessi at Naptime Diaries is one of those women.

    ReplyDelete
  12. The best choice is always to listen when God is telling you something. I'll be praying.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Prayers and love! You guys are amazing and ever-so talented. Can't wait to see how God writes the rest of this story!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Been praying for you, sweet, precious friend! I'm amazed by your faith and obedience...you two can't go wrong if you're following Him! Love you, girl!

    ReplyDelete
  15. I just found your blog and I think God led me to it! My husband and I have struggle financially as well...actually, I have struggled with over spending. I have been doing a lot of praying, reading Dave Ramsey, praying, budgeting, praying, etc. THANK YOU for being so honest and upfront about your feelings and fears.

    Now, I am also at a crossroads - thinking about changing jobs. I have been praying A LOT and looking to God for answers. It is so rrefreshing to have found your blog! Thank you again!

    ReplyDelete
  16. Praying for you and your family. I know it is a hard time but god has a plan for you. I'm a photographer so I know what you are going through. Hope he finds something soon. and that he enjoys doing.

    ReplyDelete
  17. split. the. seas.
    So thankful to get to see this story & give God Glory for it.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Amen to all of this. God is still the same God who provided miracles of great in the Bible.. I believe he will show his glory and might in your family and He will declare His power through provision in your lives. Continue to hold fast to that faith... and above all maintain hope, He will not disappoint. He has spoken clearly to you and do not allow any whisper from the enemy or the world to hinder or weaken God's voice!

    ReplyDelete
  19. I just found your blog the other day and already I am hooked. This is exactly what I needed to hear. For the sake of keeping your comment section short, I will just say that I have been running from the Lord for a few years now. He recently shook the sense into me a few weeks ago. It is SOOO hard. It is SOOOO scary. I'm alone in it. I just keep having to remind myself that I'm helpless and it is in God's hands.

    P.S. I love that you said "pull an Abraham". That is perfect--and even made me a chuckle a bit!

    ReplyDelete
  20. Casey I know you are such a spritual person and when I am face with though times this versus from the bible gets me through. "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, " plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

    I am praying for your family and I know God will provide.

    ReplyDelete
  21. I love that you are waiting on God "expectantly". You know He will do something in this situation and you just have to be open and available to him. Praying for you!

    ReplyDelete
  22. hearing Him and choosing to obey and submit - even when not 'practical' by the worlds standards - amazing! praying praying praying, and excited to see His provision

    ReplyDelete
  23. He IS Jehova Jireh (the God who provides). Stepping out in faith is never easy, way to go! He WILL bless you for doing so! We serve a trustworthy savior!! I can not wait to see how the Lord will use you guys and bless your family for being obedient. I will be praying for you, friend!!

    ReplyDelete
  24. you chose life. anything apart from what God asks us to do is death. Way to go Chris and Casey! you are exactly where God wants you to be and are letting the world watch the hand of God on your life! Exactly where I pray to be everyday! Yielding to the hand of God. So happy for you and your adventure with the Creator of you and the universe! So excited to watch your journey!

    ReplyDelete
  25. Again. I love your heart and i love you.

    ReplyDelete
  26. hi casey - i found your blog from amy marable & have been reading for a little bit. thanks SO much for sharing this!! our little family is in a VERY similar sitch - trying to step out of what/who we THINK we have to be & stepping into god's hands. his hands are the best & scariest place to be, no??! :)
    sending you lots of love on your journey!
    kelly

    ReplyDelete
  27. praying for you all as tears were running down my face reading this post.
    you have an amazing family and god will take care of you.
    extra prayers for you all!

    ReplyDelete
  28. our God is an AWESOME God! amen! chris is a wonderful husband and father for walking on faith and following the Lord's direction.

    my hubby also put in his notice and (i think) this is his last week. he also went back and forth with God for almost a year about returning to his own business.

    i KNOW that God will hold in His hands our godly men and He will allow them to provide and prosper and succeed to BRING HIM GLORY!

    church, can i get an 'amen'? and the church says 'amen'!!

    love and prayers to you and your family, girl! goin to give some support to your hubby!

    ReplyDelete
  29. Casey,
    Thank you and thank Chris for being so RAW. "REAL" is what is so attractive, because then we get to see exactly who it is that God made you to be...and that, my friend, is beautiful! Thank you for abandoning what this world tries soo hard to hold with clinched fists. Thanks for being vulnerable. You are an inspiration! I was just reading last night in Luke where God say we will face hardship, we will face temptation. He doesn't let us off the hook from all that this life will hold. But this part I LOVE. He gives us such an amazing promise. That in it all, HE WILL NEVER LEAVE! HE WILL PROVIDE THE WORDS. HE IS ALL WE NEED! What a beautiful place you find yourself in right now. To be forced to place your total dependence on God alone. Praying for you...that you will listen intently to His voice, for His direction. Praying that you will continue to TRUST him when the days are tough. Thankful for your words today!

    ReplyDelete
  30. split seas. move mountains. shut the mouths of hungry lions. raise the dead. untold miracles, unfolding before your very eyes. what a testimony you are giving to your children of God's faithfulness and provision. of pure TRUST. i am without sufficient words to describe how blown away i am right now. i will be praying for your family and i'm excited that we readers get to watch this story unravel. casey, be so thankful for a husband who listens to God's leading no matter what. that is a rare man.

    ReplyDelete
  31. i can't wait to see what God does. i truly believe that the Creator of creativity has something unexpected in store for your family that will completely blow your minds. there is something so beautiful about how open and real you and chris are. i think God loves that. i love you and am praying for you!

    ReplyDelete
  32. This is an amazing story of truth and reality! I will do anything I can to try and help and keep you in my heart. You are an amazing person and I KNOW that you guys will make it through this!
    I'm heading to his new blog now and I will spread the word! :)
    xxx,ooo

    ReplyDelete
  33. I was literally just standing in my kitchen 20 minutes ago telling my husband how I felt like God was telling us to become complete faith based people, and I wondered how exactly we make that leap. I'm not entirely sure what he is calling us to do so I'm so confused as to where to start. I just HAPPENED upon your blog from The Shine Project.

    Briefly we married in 07, had our son in 07, moved to TX in 08. Lost our home in Hurricane Ike and lost a large portion of our salary due to the economic times. Moved on a better job offer to SC and lost that job after the best most spiritually fulfilling year of my life. Now we sit, jobless, only having a home due to an amazing family who owned a home that was available. Now we are waiting. Waiting for the company that has given my husband a job to call him for jet school. Waiting for the next step. Waiting for God to move. We are in debt, foot stampin' it, and waiting for him to move! 2 little ones here too. 3yrs and 1yr. boy and girl. I cried the minute I read this post. I was meant to see it. He is not only moving you, but using you to move me! x's and O's from TN and I can't wait to see what he does in your lives.

    ReplyDelete
  34. So proud of your faithfulness ... the Lord will provide!! Love you both!

    ReplyDelete
  35. this post inspired mine today. I read this and thought how scary it is to truly listen to what God is asking of us. He is not safe, but he is GOOD!

    will be praying for his peace and guidance for your sweet family!

    ReplyDelete
  36. I will pray for your family!
    YOu are both talented and I am sure God has great things planned for yOU!
    xoxo
    tara

    ReplyDelete
  37. While I don't know you personally, I know in my spirit that the Lord will provide. How inspiring that you are taking this step of faith. God will provide. His will be done. Amen, Casey :-)

    ReplyDelete
  38. I am sending Chris an email now about some photos for this summer. He is so talented!

    ReplyDelete
  39. Casey,
    My husband lost his job 8 months ago...this has been the scariest time, but the hugest blessing we have ever experienced. Do we have any prospects? No. But God is providing for us each day, and now we are no longer asking, "Lord, how are you going to provide...please provide!" Now we are saying, "May we not focus on the bread alone, but every breath from the truth of your word." I pray you are blown away by the way in which HE chooses to provide. Matthew 6:25-34...I read this passage every day for months. I can tell you that every time I read it, I was reminded that each day of our trial HE is holding up HIS promise. How great is the Father's love for you and your family!

    ReplyDelete
  40. Reading this and then reading the AMAZING comments, I know there's not much I can say to add to it. Just know that I will be praying for you and your family, as well.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Casey--THAT'S YOUR HUSBAND'S HEART?!?!?!?!? Amazing. That's where I want my hubby to be. It's beautiful and totally what the Bible says to do. So often we are caught up in life and we don't immerse ourselves in the things of the Spirit, in the things that remind us of Jesus and our eternal home with him (instead we want to buy things and have big, great jobs etc). My sister and her husband recently went through a trial which ultimately brought them back to their Maker. They only listen to praise/worship and have it on 24/7, and they take communion every night. It's totally rocked their world and I'm ready for it to do that with us, too. So even though your situation is a little bit "oh crap we have no money" it's more important that you are both being led by the spirit. True faith requires "leaping". And you have. I'm so proud of you, am excited to have "met" you, and will keep you in my heart and prayers.
    Much love!

    ReplyDelete
  42. Praying for you - thank you for sharing . . . and thank you for your willingness to follow God regardless of whether or not it makes "sense" . . .

    ReplyDelete
  43. I am praying for you family... I am reading the book Radical right now...I feel as though God is going to stir us up a bit. Not sure what He is doing yet, but I know something's coming.

    ReplyDelete
  44. all I can say is...wow.
    I offer a prayer, or two...or 20 not that God just that God will provide, cause I know he will. But I pray that you never stop hearing Him, never stop listening for Him and never reduce yourselves to the pitfalls of doubt and worry that the devil will throw at your feet.

    ReplyDelete
  45. I'll be praying, and I just know that God WILL provide!!! Hang in there sweetie!

    ReplyDelete
  46. Sweet Casey,
    I am praying for your beautiful family. Amazing things are in store for you guys, i just know it! you are following faithfully and your hearts so willing are clinging to Him! Thank you for being so open and sharing your story, being raw and real. Praying for you, friend!

    ReplyDelete
  47. Casey,
    I was at Baylor in the Elem. Ed. program when you were, but we didn't know each other. I randomly came across your blog and have been appreciating your honest posts. I'm sorry that things are rough right now, but I have to tell you that I am amazed by your family's optimism. It's inspiring. Anyway, I wondered if you have thought about cloth diapering? I have felt like I needed to tell you about it. It's both economical and earth-friendly. Disposables are so ridiculously expensive. I've been using cloth on my 17 month old since a couple months after he was born. Here are a few interesting posts about it:
    1. http://clothdiapers.blogspot.com/2010/05/why-would-you-want-to-use-cloth-diapers.html

    2. http://clothdiapers.blogspot.com/2010/11/cloth-diapers-101-types-of-cloth.html

    3. http://clothdiapers.blogspot.com/2011/04/almost-free-diapers-how-to-diaper-your.html

    4. http://clothdiapers.blogspot.com/2008/06/10-reasons-i-love-prefolds.html

    Many people are turned off by cloth because they think it's hard or gross, but it's really easy and not a big deal. You have to do a couple extra loads of laundry a week. You save an average of $2000 per child, comparing diaper costs. Plus, once you've bought them, you can reuse them on another child. I've gotten my husband, family, and several friends on board. I'd be happy to help you figure it out if you're interested. ElizabethTClements(at)yahoo(dot)com or find me on Facebook (Elizabeth Terry Clements).

    ReplyDelete
  48. Hi Casey, Just wanted to chime in to encourage you. My husband and I left a mega church ministry 3 years ago to go on the road. WIthout any bookings, We left a hefty 6f igure salary with benefits and kids in private school all because God said it was time to step out on faith. Every weekend has been filled and calls came in to book us without us asking. GOd is faithful and He asks for only faith of a mustard seed. You did what you could do and He will do the rest. You will not lack anything when God is in it. Keep your head up! Saying prayers for you and yours

    ReplyDelete
  49. Hi Casey!! There are so many more comments ahead of mine but please know that I will be praying for your family! What an incredible and amazing leap of faith and I KNOW in my heart, that you will be fully cared & provided for by Him!! Please keep up the good work and know that you are very, very loved sistah in Christ!

    Crystal
    Domestic, But Not Martha
    www.domesticbutnotmartha.com

    ReplyDelete
  50. After reading this I've added your hubby's blog to the links page on my blog. My blog is new and small but I hope I can make at least a small difference. Good luck, my prayers are with you.

    ReplyDelete
  51. we have been there all too many times...but the most important part is that you ALWAYS trust in the Lord. It is his plan, not ours...we have to listen and follow! we just made our last and final move...and even though we really don't have work lined up iniatially it will come, we just had to make the move! love your blog, i'm fairly new to it :) cute family!

    ReplyDelete
  52. I don't even know you, this is the first time to your blog but i just have to say that am SO PROUD of you for choosing to listen to God's still small voice above those of other people. They may lead you wrong but God's voice will NEVER lead you astray. He is faithful and He will show you the way He wants you to go as you take each step that He shows you in faith. For every sacrifice you make for Him here He will give you 100 fold back in the life after this one.
    Thanks for sharing your hearts.

    ReplyDelete
  53. Wow! I have just read all the posts that you mentioned and they have all moved me so much. I can relate to your husband so much. I feel that my husband is going down the wrong path. I feel like he is doing what he is doing for all the wrong reasons and sometimes he walks through our front door and he just isn't 100 percent happy with his job. Don't get me wrong he has a great job. He provides for us over and above but I want his life to be meaningful. I also want his life to be full filling. I have on many occasions told him that we will walk any path with him. He knows that I will never leave his side. I am waiting because I think one day he will see it himself, I just don't want it to be to late. So I commend you on all your journeys. Some are hard to walk, but the lessons that come out of it will always be for the story of your life. Just a side note I have also left our dog in the car. It is very scary. I love your blog.

    ReplyDelete
  54. I am at a point in my life where I needed to read this. I too felt God calling me to quit a very good job to be home with my babies. I felt that I was doing the right thing and felt could would provide. We are at a moment now where our rent is late, our bank account is low, and I have no clue how it will work. I remember reading this and remember being in awe of your strength and support of your husband. I sat down after crying and googled this post just so I could read it again. Thank you for being so open....Thank you for sharing your hearts....Seeing where you were and hearing how God provided for you is a testimony to me. Thank You.

    ReplyDelete