Have you ever considered running a business, working a full-time job, and taking care of three children? Birmingham’s Mary Martha Walker made this happen. Walker, the founder and owner of Forever Gingerbread, had the idea of constructing a wooden and reusable gingerbread house for her daughter’s birthday. What turned out being a successful birthday party, quickly turned into a business within the Walker’s home.
As the business quickly took off, Walker realized she desired this business to be bigger than within their family. Their search brought them to Reynosa, Mexico with a ministry called Isaiah 55. This ministry is a vocational program that provides educational opportunities for the deaf through providing the skills needed to have a trade. The individuals of Isaiah 55 construct the wooden and reusable gingerbread houses that Forever Gingerbread sells and the profits earned are given to Isaiah 55 to continue in their ministry in educating the deaf.
This story of how Walker began her business is an incredible testament to the woman that she is, desiring to give hope and to change lives. Her testament of faith is exactly how Forever Gingerbread decided upon their mission statement. Forever Gingerbread exists to bring God glory by partnering with the local community through vocational training, therefore creating hope. The Walker family lives out this mission in their everyday lives through their care and kindness to those in the community. As a junior at Samford University, living eight hours away from home, the Walker family has truly been my home away from home.
Walker not only impacts the community through running Forever Gingerbread, but in addition, she is also a full-time kindergarten teacher at Briarwood Christian School. At work, she continues to use her God-given gifts and creativity to impact the lives of students and families. At home, she has three beautiful children and a wonderful husband who are her biggest advocates. Walker, along with her family, are impacting the lives of people each day through their heart for others and through their story.
My challenge to you as readers is to never be afraid to take a step into the unknown because you never know where God will lead. Walker never let her fear of failure and beginning a business keep her from pursuing the work of the Lord. Forever Gingerbread continues to grow and the Walkers, along with myself, cannot wait to see where the Lord will lead them. What is your next? What do you feel like God may be calling you to do?