Hi there! My name is Kristin and I'm the founder, CEO, marketing director, writer, designer, accountant, shirt-maker and shipper at Always Joyful Apparel (AJA). That's a lot for one person, but I've always dreamed of being an entrepreneur and I can't wait to watch God work through me.
First and foremost, though, I'm a Christ-follower, wife, and #girlmom x3. These are my girls 😍 ➡
I've been dreaming about AJA for a few years now. I wrote my initial mission statement back in 2017 or 2018 (I can't recall exactly), and this is how it read:
We are passionate about coming alongside teen girls and their mothers to raise a generation of young women who are confident in who they are in Christ, courageous in their daily walk, compassionate in their interactions with others, and always joyful, for the joy of the Lord is our strength.
But as I meditated on this over the years, I kept coming back to one defining question - I don't feel like I am any of those things (confident, courageous, compassionate, or joyful) - so how can I lead others in those areas?
So after prayerfully considering this, in the height of the 2020 pandemic, I decided the only way to move forward was to be vulnerable and authentic. To share my shortcomings with the AJA community and encourage other women who feel the same. I believe that together in community, we can grow in our relationship with Jesus and in our walk, so that one day, we can confidently say these things about ourselves.
Therefore, I have revised my mission statement to read this way:
We are a community of women learning to be confident in who we are in Christ, courageous in our daily walk, compassionate in our interactions with others, and always joyful, for the joy of the Lord is our strength.
I also sought out Scripture to attach to each word, to help us keep our focus:
CONFIDENT in who we are in Christ
The result of righteousness will be peace; the effect of righteousness will be quiet confidence forever. (Isaiah 32:17)
COURAGEOUS in our daily walk
Haven’t I commanded you: be strong and courageous? Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. (Joshua 1:9)
COMPASSIONATE in our interactions with others
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility consider others as more important than yourselves. Everyone should look not to his own interests, but rather to the interests of others. (Philippians 2:3-4)
The joy of the Lord is your strength. (Nehemiah 8:10)
Thank you for joining me on this journey! I don't think I'm special in any important, earthly way, but I do believe that "the Lord God has given me the tongue of those who are instructed to know how to sustain the weary with a word." (Isaiah 50:4-5) How? I'm not sure yet. But I know that God is faithful, and he doesn't call the equipped but equips the called for His glory. So let's do this!