Even though today is Kristin’s birthday, back in 1990 another noteworthy event happened on June 25th. Our family had moved to Carmel in 1982 and within a year I was getting ready to open a temporary staffing business in Nora, on the north side of Indianapolis. Janet and I couldn’t afford very much in the way of rent for our office space so I went to an older, clean, well established office complex named Winterton, owned by a well known builder of high end custom homes – Mr. Winters.
He was a stately, elderly gentleman, and his office manager escorted me through the complex, looking at office suites that were open. The first floor stuff was too expensive, so I asked to be shown the basement spaces. Admittedly, I didn’t care too much about being in the basement, but that was all I could afford. When we returned to the office, Mr. Winters said he a space that he wanted to personally show me. We went to one of the two largest office buildings and entered a first floor suite. He asked if it would work, as is. It was great for what I needed. Sure, it needed paint, but that was about it. And then Mr. Winters surprised me by announcing that he wanted to paint and carpet the entire office for me – just his way of helping me get started.
Anyway, Mr. Winters had heard about me and didn’t think that I should start my company “below ground level” – after all, it would be difficult enough to keep my head above water without starting “in a basement.” He told me the rent was $536.67 per month and I could start paying rent whenever I could afford it – no strings attached. He said that he loved to see young people start their own companies and this was his contribution to my effort. Of course, I took the space and never missed a month of rent – how could I, after all the kindness he had extended to me and the confidence that he had in me? I kept expanding and had my office in Winterton for more than 7 years – until June 25, 1990 – the day that we knew we had outgrown the space and needed something larger – the day we moved “uptown.”
By this time, Mr. Winters had sold the complex and if I would have had the money, I would have liked owning it myself. But that didn’t happen. Although we were growing quickly, we were plowing everything back into the business and it was necessary to make the move to larger quarters. So we moved to Keystone at the Crossing, the premier north side office complex in Indy. We were there more than 10 years – until Janet and I sold the business. It was a great move for us – our business grew more than 25% as a result of our move to the Crossing. The association with success was something that we hadn’t counted on – but it sure launched the business to a new level. Once we moved, we never looked back – it was like jumping to light speed – we just grew and grew and grew…
And then, several years later, we doubled our space – a move that I would later regret. I guess I just got too big for my britches, as they say… So, eventually, we sold the company, I attended seminary and the rest, as they say, is history. As I look back on it, the years at Winterton and then at the Crossing were distinct and different phases of my life. But neither of them has been as fulfilling as the time since then – my years in seminary and the ministries and businesses I have worked in since then. The verse for this evening is from Heb. 6:10, “God is not unjust; he will not forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have helped his people and continue to help them.”
My encouragement this evening is to remind you that whether you work in an office, or in a ministry, God wants your work to benefit His people and His kingdom. My prayer is that you will consider the impact to God’s people whenever you make a decision that impacts your sphere of influence. After all, for most of us, we make decisions every day that impact many families around us and God has entrusted their financial well being to our care. Have a great day in the Lord, grace and peace…