by Stephanie Martinez
Shawn and I believe that God has created His people to either be pioneers or settlers. Pioneers are the ones who go and create and start things, while settlers are the ones who stay and establish and maintain those things. For example, church planters and church growers. There are people who travel the world and plant churches, and there are those who stay and become the elders, the deacons, etc. Of these two categories, we believe to be the former.
We are pioneers.
So here we are, at the Contrast House, and we are so excited for what God has us starting. This ministry has been envisioned for a long time. It has been up and running for 1-2 years. But it is very much in the beginning stages. We are in a beautiful place of envisioning, dreaming, imagining and just going for it. Right now P’Pan and Shawn are downstairs creating a counter for the lobby. Together, we have all brainstormed incredible ideas for different themes for each room at the Contrast House. We are dreaming and believing for more property, more artists, more creations.
I imagine how it was for Loren Cunningham when he first dreamt up YWAM. It has become bigger than he could have ever imagined. And it all began with a vision that he had from the Lord. When God calls us, He calls us to things that are bigger than we could have dreamt up ourselves. So here we are, in this small 3 bedroom house- believing for another house with 5 bedrooms, and then bigger and more. And beautiful rooms full of art and creations. Where people can rest and see God’s beauty.
There is nothing that God can’t do. There is no skill that He has given us that He can’t use for His glory. For Shawn and P’Pan, they are artists. They are creators. And they tap into God’s vast imagination- the Creator of all things! For me, I am a mama, a communicator, an activator. First and foremost, I desire to raise my son (and future children) to live for God. As P’Pan would say, a mother is one who “disciples the nations”. Beyond that, I desire for people to live in their passions. To push people into discovering who God created them to be and then encouraging them to live in that identity. Sounds simple coming from the wife of an artist.
Here at the Contrast House, I am in the role of Content Manager. I will be working on the website for our ministry, editing any english, working on blogs, reaching out to supporters, etc. Shawn will be painting everyday and working on projects for the Contrast House. We all have big dreams for what this place will look like for visitors and how to truly make it the most restful place for people to come and stay. It is amazing having staff from different walks of life. It makes brainstorming really fun. We all have ideas that are so different, and yet we all mesh together so well.
May 2nd, we are moving into a new place. Our ministry is going from 3 rooms to 8 rooms- which means more opportunity to bless others. Hopefully we will have a new website up and running within a couple weeks, as well.
As for our family, we have all adjusted pretty well- especially considering it is the hottest month of the year! Elijah has been hitting some major milestones- crawling, pulling himself up to standing, clapping, all sorts of new sounds. And he is happier than he’s ever been. Shawn is growing in his skill set for painting, and I am attempting to prioritize motherhood and my role here. It’s amazing how well we all fit together. God had it perfectly planned!
We really want to thank everyone who is supporting us- through prayer and finances. We don’t nearly have all the monthly support that we need, but because of all the gracious one-time gifts, we are going to be okay for a while. And our heart is to eventually have Shawn and his art support us. So we are trusting God with that. More than anything, we are grateful for the prayer. Knowing that there are so many people who lift us up, think of us often, have us on their hearts, makes this transition so much easier. We are grateful for that.