s(he) has a story

I need way more than 800 words to do this thing justice, but I’m setting limits for myself tonight, folks. Limits.

A couple weeks ago I blogged about my new favorite t-shirt and shared five reasons why you need to buy one. And I meant it. No one asked me/paid me to say any of it. I didn’t even get a free t-shirt (and you know what a tightwad I am).

It’s just that cool–the look, the feel, the cause, all of it. Go order one. I’ll wait. (If you ordered one–and I know a bunch of you did–leave a comment telling everyone how glad you are that you did.)

So I blogged about the t-shirt, went out of town, and came back to messages from all kinds of awesome people. The Director of Operations of As Our Own, some people connected with “She Has A Name,” the guy who owns the company that designed the t-shirts.

That t-shirt guy’s name is Kevin, and check this out. He saw on Facebook that we Prayer Doulas were trying to raise enough money to sponsor a week at Harbor House in Haiti. He’s been to Haiti. He loves Haiti. And he gives 10%+ of his t-shirt proceeds to kingdom causes and had a chunk of change he was asking God where to unload.

“How much do you still need?” he asked me. “$186,” I said. “Done,” he said.

Are you stinking kidding me?

A week later, he was eating tacos at our kitchen table. (Tacos are pretty much the only homemade meal you’ll get if you eat dinner at our house. Gabe is ready for something new.) Kevin and his beautiful wife and baby girl had just moved from Columbus to Indy a few days before, and they were back for a couple days (Alyssa has to finish up a dance class she teaches).

His story is amazing and will need its own post someday (after I get his permission). He went to school to be a teacher and God has led him down an entirely different path (same as me). He told us it was a blessing to be able to share his crazy journey-story with believers, because if you don’t believe in God, you’re really not going to understand why in the heck he has done/is doing 95% of what he does. It makes no sense on paper.

We briefly shared our Zoo Quest with him and set his heart at ease. We know crazy. We (well, I, anyway) thrive on it.

Long story short, God crossed our paths in HIS perfect way. We didn’t do a blessed thing. After he left, I just shook my head the rest of the night (and envisioned all the t-shirts I want him to make for us–Cambodia, Prayer Doulas, Love C-bus, De-Clutterers Unite!). God. Is. So. Awesome.

One thing he said threw me for a loop. He mentioned a gal named Karen, and I said, “Yes! She messaged me and thanked me for writing a post about the t-shirts. So, how do you know her?”

“She’s my mother-in-law.”

Um, what? See, Karen and I had become friends on Facebook, and this girl is gorgeous and amazing, and there’s NO WAY she’s a day over 40. “Your WHAT?!”

His mother-in-law. True story. Kevin is maybe 25. His wife is a few years younger. Her mama was young when she had her. Karen is 6 years my senior, drop-dead gorgeous, and a grandma.

And I had lunch with her today.

Talk about a STORY. That’s yet another blog post. She’s got a testimony to beat the band, and she and her family are living a crazy, Jesus-centered, love-your-neighbor-and-reach-out-to-the-world kind of life.

And she’s the one who started the whole She Has A Name thing. She has a heart for those trapped in human trafficking and is doing something about it. She’s the kind of woman you might be tempted to hate because she’s so pretty and amazing. BUT she’s so stinking nice and so real about her struggles with depression and her past and all kinds of other stuff, and you just can’t help but fall in love with her.

And she’s an emotional roller coaster with a level-headed husband like yours truly. Nice.

I forgot to bring Nina something to do while we were at Panera, so she lasted over 90 minutes with a pen and a couple pieces of paper before she had a meltdown. I can’t wait to chat more with Karen, because there’s so much I still want to know. I found out at the last minute that she homeschools. More brain-picking coming up…

Almost at my word count, so 2 things:

1. If you bought a t-shirt, give it some shout-out love.

2. What t-shirts (designs, slogans) should we do to raise money for stuff?

800 words on the NOSE, baby! SWEET!

38 thoughts on “s(he) has a story

  1. Pingback: Marla Taviano » tees with purpose! (super-duper september)

  2. Julie

    Thanks for this! Karen IS amazing. Kevin and his wife are amazing. She Has a Name is amazing. and most of all, GOD is amazing!

    Karen is one of my favorite people in all the world. I adore my t-shirt and I love seeing the shirts for sale at Veritas (our church) each week.

    What a blessing that you are now connected as well, Marla. Praying for your ministry and love to hear more about people who love Jesus in Cbus!

    Much love~Julie Workman

  3. Mandy

    I’m going to ask for a T-shirt for an early Mother’s Day gift so I can wear it for TraffickJam 2011. I’ll pass along the link to my friends who will be walking, too.

    Thanks for sharing the cool story! God connections!

    About the homeschooling thing; are you considering homeschooling? I highly recommend it! I thank God every day that he led our family to homeschool.

  4. Joel McLaughlin

    Really think this is a coo story. As for T-shirt ideas…

    How about one of my favorite things I have ever seen you write…

    It’s not about me.

    Then by it, put a pic of Jesus or a Bible verse. Maybe:

    Galatians 5:14 For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

    Or some other verse.

    Anyway, you posting: “it’s not about me” keeps ringing in my head over time.

  5. Meredith

    The shirt and hoodies are SUPER great quality. I have worked with Kevin on a project I am working on. He is GREAT and super patient!

    I go to church with Karen and I agree, she’s a SUPER gal!

  6. Mindy May

    First of all I LOVE t-shirts! I love them even more if they have a good message or support something worth supporting. I have bought several Wild Olive tees and I want to get She Has A Name one now as well! I can’t wait to wear it and have people ask me about it!!! Thank you for introducing this to us.

      1. Mindy May

        Wild Olive Tees are t-shirts with a scripture on the back. I currently have the beloved t-shirt and the beauty from the ashes t-shirt. I get so many comments on them. One little boy came up to me and told me that the verse on my shirt was the same one he was memorizing that week. I love the conversations they spark! They do not support an organization but they do show God’s word.

  7. Sharon Meekins

    Hi Marla,

    I ordered a t-shirt while I was in Haiti. I came home last Tuesday 4/5 and received my shirt earlier this week. I love it! 🙂

    Sending much love to you,

  8. Rachelle

    I bought a shirt today! The cause pushed me over. After all the decluttering discussion I am trying not to obtain more clothing but this is WAY worth it!

    second question…i am going to ask my 16 yo son. He’s one of those creative, loves Jesus and t shirts types that probably has an awesome idea!

      1. Rachelle

        when Blake got home I begged a 10 minute t-shirt branistorm.

        1) a shirt with “this little light of mine” and a little light bulb.

        2)a shirt with a small dot and big dot with arrows pointing to them that say Cambodia (small dot) and USA (bigger dot). Then a tiny, tiny dot with arrow that says “one of God’s children”. One the back a ton of tiny tiny dots and reference to James 1:27. He says it would look good black with white letters and dots, tiny, tiny dots in red.

        3) my idea is one I saw on The Gypsy Mama blog, it’s from Kristen Welch’s book , “Don’t Make Me Come up There”. So there’s probably a copyright. http://thegypsymama.com/2011/04/a-giveaway-for-a-dont-make-me-come-up-there-day/
        “I’m a mom, what’s you’re superpower”.

        Blake also says that it’s still okay to say “cool”, he told me that he still says it! 🙂 and I totally trust his judgement.

  9. Teresa Henry

    I loved reading your post today (as in everyday)! I got a hooded sweatshirt. I wear it almaost every day! I love it. It is so soft and comfy.

    I just love how God connects the dots in our lives and intersects people at just the right time. He is good at that!!

  10. Kandi

    I had forgotten to tell you earlier that I bought a t shirt. I love wearing it and explaining what it means. (most people seem to assume something about abortion).
    The whole Kevin/Karen/FB thing just makes me want to break out in a chorus of our God is an awesome God! Cheers!

  11. Ruth

    Thank you for doing what you do, Marla! You’re always an encouragement :)…. and your blog is SO much fun to read every morning 🙂

    Just ordered two for me and my sis’ 🙂

  12. Karen Shock

    Ok… you are way to kind! Just want you to know that I felt the same way about you :)! Your life is an encouragement to me… makes me want to run harder after HIM. Thanks so much for meeting with me and for shining a huge spotlight on the ONE who truly satisfies!

  13. Addie

    One of my favorite quotes:
    “the signs of the Christian church have been the lion, the lamb, the dover and the fish…. but never the chameleon.”
    – Kaj Munk

    Not really sure what it could be used for though… 🙂

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