Welcome and thank you!

Welcome! And thank you for your continued support!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Yesterday and today, I spoke about Fresh Grounds and how our ministry works and what exactly I do to some big groups:
I once spoke as a kid in front of 3,000 people... don't remember the experience very much, needless to say it was pretty traumatic.
I later could get up on stage no problem, with little nerves as long as I was playing a character and not myself and had specific lines to memorize.
Recently I have really been pushed out of my comfort zone in speaking with large groups about my life story and about God and what he has done and is doing in my life. It gets easier each and every time.
I can easily talk about art. It just naturally flows and I thought to myself, speaking about God and the work that Jesus did up on the cross should be just as if not easier to talk about than art. So I am working on it, and it is exciting to see the growth that is happening.
I often have no idea what I am actually saying and I hope that it means the holy spirit has stepped in... but afterwards, is when I realize what all I said. And it is exciting to see how I could have said this or that wrong or gotten of on a tangent here or there and God has really guided my words.
I am still not a good speaker, and look forward to gaining more wisdom and knowledge, but I have been exposing my heart and I hope that God can do his work through that.
When God is in control, he can really bring glory to himself even using the least likely candidate.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

We are well into March and I am finally spending the time to share what's going on.
We are staying busy at Fresh Grounds for sure. I have been spreading myself pretty thin, but I am in constant prayer for God's strength, otherwise I would have a complete mental breakdown. Getting more Episodes written for our mini series, "the grounds", that will be filmed this summer with the help of an intern. Still teaching my painting and printmaking class, getting ready to take on new registration for the summer classes along with coming up with curriculum for my summer College for Kids art courses, and getting ready to the end for our final show...Which will take place during our Arts Festival which I planned and am continuing to promote and organize. In addition to my classes exhibition I will be having my own exhibition of new work at the FHC building right up the street. Fortunately a web development company in town, Reeves, will be helping me revamp the website and make it a little easier for me to manager. Still trying to finish the image for our new menu boards that we will be making and construction has begun on the second floor where our gallery and studio will be. In addition I still fulfill my responsibilities as evening manager of the coffee shop. AHHHHHHH! I am enjoying it all though! I am continuing to struggle financially with the little support I have raised and am making half of the amount in student loan bills that I have. But I continue to have a peace that is only from God, that He will provide.

The coffee shop has continued to build a regular customer basis and we a consistently maxing out the place. I love to see the Friday night crowd make Fresh Grounds their hangout and the Thursday night jammers build relationships with each other as local musicians. God is certainly providing ministering opportunities for myself and the volunteers as we work as a team behind the counter to serve God and our community.

A group of Grogans including myself had been trekking out to Youngstown every Sunday to attend an amazing church. We as a group took on some responsibilities at the church becoming more involved as the church lost its pastor. This past Sunday we as a group came to the hard conclusion that it was time to find a church in Greenville so we can continue to serve our local Greenville community in addition to what we do at Fresh Grounds. It was a hard decision leaving the church as they are going through difficult times, but we all felt moved... not to mention gas prices continuing to rise and me not having a car, it was becoming quite an expensive trip. We left the church prayerfully and with heavy hearts, but the church community understood and we both happy to see us be more apart of our community in this way but sad to see us leave their group. God will continue to do His work with or without us, and realizing this makes me want to join in more in what God is already doing in Greenville. Great quote from Bono, "don't ask God to bless what you are doing, but join in what God has already blessed and is doing". It is not about me and what I can do or am doing, and thank goodness!