How Did Graces Inc. Begin?

Printer-friendly versionSend to friendGraces Inc.® was formed by four women – each from uniquely different personal and spiritual backgrounds – on the Christ-centered principle that Scripture, Prayer and Accountability should be at the heart of every woman’s daily life.  

Most people launch a ministry having experienced some sort of divine intervention.  Others believe they have a “calling” to carry out a specific direction from God.  Graces Inc. was quite different. Upon first meeting one another in a professional organization, the four of us had no idea what God had in store.  In 1996, we gathered for the first time in one of our homes - more out of curiosity as to why we were there. But in that meeting, based entirely on a nudge, we spoke candidly about wanting to seek ways to become more grounded in our lives.  Little did we realize that an ever-increasing desire to know God through Scripture, Prayer and the discipline of being held Accountable for decisions and actions, would lead to something that would transform our lives and some day help other women as well. But as we continued to meet and share, we began to draw closer as a result of trust, transparency, and friendship.  In 2000, we affectionately named our tiny remnant “The Graces.”

Knowing full well we would fall short more times than not, we embarked upon a personal journey to unveil our inner selves, open our lives up to constructive counsel, and seal our hearts with the armor of Christ – His Word.  In doing so, trials, tribulations and tragedies all began to look very different – as did life in general.  This evolution of The Graces’ individual lives took place over a period of the next ten years.

And then one day, while on a weekend retreat in the beautiful mountains of Colorado, God whispered that it was time to do more.  More?  What did that mean?  Was God asking us to conduct Bible studies, give our personal testimonies in public places, become more involved in our churches and professional communities - or to simply dig deeper into learning how to ‘stand firm’ in our daily walk?  Our emotions were all over the board, and we were certain He was nudging us again.

But then…that Saturday afternoon, while reading Scripture together and Praying, the first glimpse of a broader opportunity began to unfold. The initial concern of everyone in our unassuming group was that we would all fall short of expectations.  Could we really “go live” with this message? Could God truly use us to influence other women’s lives with the simple connection we had developed as four ordinary women who longed to be a little better in our daily walk?  Could we continue to work together at reaching our full potential in Christ and, in doing so, find our distinct purpose in building His Kingdom?

In our initial years together, some of us were very new Christians while others who had come to know Christ personally at a younger age, still struggled with staying firmly footed in our faith.  Although we had all experienced a personal re-connection to God over this decade together, did we truly have what it took to stay the course?  We all knew this would not be easy – the world would tempt us, and God would have to strengthen us time and again. Others would see us and perhaps say, “I remember her, when…”  But that weekend, the Scripture provided the answers to all of our objections, and we left that beautiful spa retreat with a hunger to do more.

During that weekend in Colorado, far away from the stresses of work, family, single-mom trials and struggling marriages, everything about our decade of Bible Study, Prayer and Accountability began to feel like something more than just years of good times with good friends.  As hard as we tried, we could not move away from the thought that God truly wanted us to go forward in developing a ministry to inspire other women to take a similar journey.  We then asked God to show us how - and left the rest up to Him.  

God began to provide us with ideas to start the company, build the brand, and create the S.P.A. model.   In 2007, Graces Inc.® was formed, and the S.P.A. Approach® developed. S.P.A. had become a driving thrust in our lives, and we wanted other women to know the confidence and peace we had found from embracing it.  In 2006, a concept for a book surfaced, and we began writing.  As we were writing Journey To Grace, A 40 Day Journal, the opportunity to build tools that would assist women in forming and sustaining their own distinctive small groups also emerged, and on a Sunday in July of 2010, the Graces Inc. website went live worldwide.

From the beginning, it was all about Faith.  And it still is today.  In everything we do to further develop Graces Inc.® and The S.P.A. Approach®, we first ensure it is in Scripture, then we Pray for discernment, and finally we ask God and each other to hold us Accountable for making it about HIM, not about us.  S.P.A. provides us with the confidence and peace that we are doing things according to His will and purpose for our lives.  And as a result, we have found retreat, relaxation, and revitalization in living.    

Prayerfully consider The S.P.A. Approach®. With professions, marriages, children, trials, and active lives, nothing will ever quiet the soul, fill the void or give you the strength and courage to endure, until you have submitted to a persistent time in Scripture, Prayer, and the willingness to be held Accountable.  We can’t think of any better way to motivate you, than to encourage you to incorporate other women with a similar desire.  Grace and peace to you.  The Graces