You might want to grab some snacky snacks and get settled into a comfy chair because while I contemplated on giving you a cliff note version of how the building became this ministry’s headquarters, I realized you wouldn’t truly know what a miracle it is. So, again, grab the snacks, and let’s get started!
Five years. That’s how long this building with the green doors has been tucked away inside of my heart. You see, five years ago, when Mikayla was still our foster princess, we were out for a walk. She was still young and in a stroller when I rounded the corner of this building. A friend of mine rented it for her decorating business; therefore, when I saw the doors propped open to let the fresh air inside, I peeked my head in to say hello. As I turned around to continue on our walk, I heard God’s voice so clearly say, “This will be yours for the ministry one day.” I laughed. What ministry? At the time, I had just started this infertility blog, as well as an in-person support group called “The Nest.” I had a minimal following (just my friends, family, and nosey neighbors) and only five ladies coming to the group, so why would I need this space?
But with it tucked in the back of my mind I went home and told my husband about it. He kept asking what building I was referring to, and I kept trying to explain the location. I am horrible at directions and finally blurted out, “It’s the building with the green doors.” From that moment on, anytime I would talk to someone or God about it, I would always refer to it as “the building with the green doors.” I never knew when it would happen, and I doubted all of the time if I heard God correctly, especially after my friend moved her business out and the owners wanted $500 to rent it. I couldn’t justify spending that much money for a once-a-month meeting. It needed work, and it didn’t have a kitchen. If you know me, then you know that I MUST have food at every event. However, within that same year, during my weekly drive-by, I noticed a “for sale by owner” sign taped to the window. With such excitement, I had my husband call, but much like the rent, it was out of my price range. My memory is fuzzy, and I could be wrong, but the owners asked for over $50K. Again, I couldn’t justify spending such a large sum of money on a once-a-month meeting.
The building ended up not selling, and the owners decided to keep it. I felt hopeless because it was also during this time that on average, 12-15 women were driving from all three of the surrounding states to come; which was great, except I knew that at some point I would need a different space as my living room could only seat 17, and that is with us packed in like sardines and sharing the same air space. But then came the Fall of 2020. I had my third meeting in a row where 24+ women would commit to coming, and I would pray that God would expand my house in less than 2 hours before they arrived, or else I wouldn’t have room. As it turned out, each time, only 17 exactly would show up. It was after that early Fall September meeting that I was in my prayer closet, and thinking about how the night before my living room was packed, not another person could have squeezed in, that I heard the Lord say, “Do you remember the building with the green doors? It’s time.”
Of course, I started to sweat. We don’t have the money to buy it, and my family has sacrificed so much already for the ministry. My husband doesn’t drive his old beat-up truck because he likes it; he dumps all of our extra money into the ministry. And he does it without complaint. But it was on that Friday morning when I heard God instruct me to go after “the building with the green doors” that I decided to drive by it. I was shocked to see a new “for sale by owner” sign on the door. I got out to take a picture of the phone number and pray over the building but when I noticed above the phone number another number…the asking price of $35,000…my heart sank much like that night five years ago when the owner told me his rent price, as well as his price to purchase. Why? Because that morning in my prayer closet, I heard the number 15. For some miraculous reason, I thought I heard that number because he would sell it to me for $15K. Therefore to see $35K, I just knew I couldn’t talk him down that much. So, with my mind swirling on how I could come up with that much money, I got back into the van, completely forgetting to pray. But that is when Mikayla stopped me and said, “But Mom! We forgot to pray!” So, back out we go.
I’ll be honest; I prayed quickly before hopping back in the van (I didn’t want to be seen). But Mikayla? I turned to see if she was getting in the van too, but she was bringing down the fire from heaven as she had both hands on the door. Proud Momma moment! But as we drove off, feeling already feeling defeated, I heard the Lord say, “If it were $15K or even $25K, then you wouldn’t see my hand in it.”
And He was right. This would take a miracle…a miracle that only He could do.
Fast forward, I eventually gave my husband the phone number and asked him to call when he wanted, hoping that he would forget because I tend to have a slight “delayed obedience to God” problem that I am not proud to admit. But on Monday morning, I woke up, checked my Facebook, and saw that the property was no longer listed “by owner” but rather through a real estate agency. Many comments had already poured in with people wanting to look at it or start a business adventure. Nervous, I panicked! Within minutes I called the agent, told her the backstory, and scheduled a showing later that afternoon.
Excited and hopeful, I stepped foot into the building with the green doors, and after realizing how much work it would take, I once more felt overwhelmed. I couldn’t pay for it, let alone afford to have it remodeled. But I am learning that if you step out, God will show out. And so, I stepped out. The following week was my birthday week, and I humbly asked through a Facebook fundraiser for donations to purchase the building. Within three weeks, I had raised $35K.
Friends, God bought the building with the green doors, which, as you might not know, because I didn’t until after I signed the papers, green in the bible symbolizes life, restoration, and fertility. Coincidence? I think not.
I also bought the building attached to it from another real estate agent. My building and her building were only separated by a piece of drywall that closed the entryway to both sides. You see, it used to be a restaurant and bar. My side was the restaurant, and her side was the bar.
I hadn’t planned to spend more money, but after I purchased my side, I heard after being vacant for so long that she was possibly putting apartments in hers. I wasn’t crazy about that idea, so I asked my husband if we could buy it too. He looked at me and said, “Elisha, this isn’t monopoly! We don’t have to buy the whole block!”
But we did.
And I do.
I plan to use the side with the green doors for my in-person groups/lounge area. I’ll have furniture set up like a living room so that it still feels cozy and homey—much like my home. I’ll also add a kitchen in the back so that I’ll still be able to cook and provide meals during our gatherings. On the other side, I plan to host conferences, worship nights, and fundraising events to help those pursuing adoption or help pay for their medical costs. I also want to have weekend conferences for couples because the divorce rate is 3x higher for couples facing infertility and loss.
But it’s not just going to be used for fertility-related events. God put it on my heart to open the doors for others, possibly on occasion stick a sign on the sidewalk that reads, “Need prayer? Come on in.” Inside will be snacks and a hug. I had this idea months ago, but it was solidified when a woman walked by the building and asked me what I was using it for. I told her, and she said that she hoped I would let “people like her” come in for hope too. She doesn’t have a problem having kids; she said that she “just has a boyfriend who beats her and a childhood that haunts her.” My heart broke. Sometimes people don’t need a scripture; they need a hug. Someone to listen to them. To sit with them in their mess and validate their pain. For this reason, I have decided to name “the building with the green doors “–“Doors of Hope.” My prayer is that each person who walks through those green double doors will find hope for new life and restoration no matter what circumstances they are going through. Yeah, infertility is what I know. But as the old saying goes, it’s not what you know, but who you know. I know Jesus. And I can at least point them to Him.
“Let many gather together so that there be no room to receive them, that they may hear the preaching of the word and be healed.” Mark 2:2
The last several months have been difficult as we have been remodeling. Money is tight, but the Lord is providing. As of now, one side is complete and the other side will be completed in the fall of 2022. If you live in my small town of Carmi, Illinois you might have noticed the faux carriage doors I had constructed instead of replacing the front busted-out windows. This idea came to me after I decided to name the building “Doors of Hope.” I simply found it fitting. I hope you do too.
A Mix of BEFORE, DURING and AFTER the remodel:
More information about Waiting for Baby Bird Ministries and what this faith based non-profit organization provides:
Waiting for Baby Bird Ministries is a faith-based non-profit organization existing to support women and couples going through infertility and pregnancy loss. Our mission is to empower radical hope for the impossible and healing for the broken.
Waiting for Baby Bird Ministries first began as an infertility blog in 2014 under the name of Waiting for Baby Bird. Since that time, it has quickly become an internationally known name, as well as a non-profit organization with the heart to empower women going through infertility to draw closer to God as they have radical hope to believe for the impossible. This faith-based ministry also comes alongside couples going through a miscarriage/pregnancy loss by providing them with a “Forget Me Not” in order to help bring comfort and peace during a time of uncertainty and tremendous pain. Each box is personally packed with items to help stir up hope for the future, and healing for the now.
Elisha, the author of Waiting for Baby Bird and founder of Waiting for Baby Bird Ministries, struggles herself with infertility and loss. She and her husband have been married for 14 years, and despite the last 9 of those years unsuccessfully being able to conceive due to PCOS, they still continue to stay positive as they stand steadfast in believing the Lord for a miracle. However, despite her womb continuing to remain empty after her miscarriage in 2012, her arms have not. In 2017, she and her husband adopted a little girl, who is now the age of 10, after spending 1,273 days in foster care.
Through this ministry, Elisha’s mission in life is to share her story in order to inspire and breathe hope into the lives of other women facing similar circumstances. Whether it is through her writing, standing behind the podium at infertility conferences, or leading her own online support group, as well as her dynamic in-person support group located within her small town of Southern Illinois, she radically and daringly inspires other women to not give up on their dreams as they continue to believe for the impossible.
What Do We Do?
- This organization sends “Forget Me Not” pregnancy loss boxes for FREE to couples experiencing a miscarriage or baby loss.
- This organization helps pay medical bills for those who have had a still birth or other medical procedures in regards to a miscarriage.
- This organization provides support through our special in-person events.
- This organization hosts infertility conferences, worship nights, and other larger events in order to empower hope for the impossible and healing for the broken.
- This organization provides couples with financial assistance to help build their family through our annual “10K Family Building GIFTaway.”
- This organization provides daily encouragement through LIVE videos, hope-filled messages, scripture and so much more in our closed Online Support Group.
For further information regarding this ministry, as well as to inquire about in-person encouragement gatherings, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/waitingforbabybird
Online Support Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1398611700176070
Ways to Donate: