Great question! I had originally written a post about this topic 10 years ago, thinking to myself, “I’ll target Christian business owners looking for a new website or help with SEO services.” With much success, I reached numbers 1 and 2 in Google for the keyword Spirit-Filled Christian SEO company in a very short time.
I chose this keyword for a very specific reason… because, growing up as a kid, I always attended a Christian Church, but never felt comfortable just be myself.
Not knowing at the time, I am an empath who is sensitive to people’s energies. I would hear the grownups say one thing, but I would feel a completely different vibe.
As I created Deerstone Development, I decided every day before work to give thanks to the Creator and meditate on Gratitude, since it’s the fuel that supplies the amount of faith I have to see the unseen. As I dive deeper into this concept, it always causes me to take action when I see an opportunity for success.
It’s always up to me to choose to make success a reality or not.
I was extremely good at building websites in HTML and Dreamweaver and saw how popular WP blogs were becoming. So, I decided to migrate my site over to WordPress and start blogging myself.
The problem was I did not know how to properly secure a WordPress website and fell victim to the dreaded hacker attack multiple times!
God Works In MYSTERIOUS Ways They Say…
As fate would have it, I got a phone call from a custom software company called Espresso Moon LLC located in Houston, Texas inquiring about SEO services. The owner of the company, Doug Wheeler, found me because my site was ranked #1 and #2 for Christian SEO website design company in Google at that time.
It was the perfect timing because I needed help with my site being hacked.
Doug and the EM team were extremely helpful with removing the malware from my WordPress website and getting me back into the business. Over the course of 5 years, our companies worked on various projects remotely, since I was living in Santa Rosa, California at the time.
The business was booming. Life was starting to look and feel like nothing crazy would ever happen. You know, because God is in control of everything, and protects his children right?
I could never have imagined the amount of hellfire that was about to be hurled into my life in the coming weeks.
The Calm Before The Tubbs Firestorm… Surviving The Diablo Winds!
I will always remember my dad calling me to pick up the remaining boxes I had left at his house just three days before they completely disappeared in the Tubbs Wildfire in October of 2017.
I was so put off and did not want to drive up there, due to family drama. But deep down inside I had a feeling I had to go and pick these things up.
A good reminder that God is always speaking to us and it’s up to us to respond and engage.
I grabbed my high school yearbook, a bunch of priceless pictures, some old childhood memorable items, and all my military gear.
Both of my parents lived in separate homes. One, off Riebli road and the other, off Mark West in Santa Rosa, just miles from each other. Tragically, they lost both homes in this California wildfire.
My house was safe, but without power, unable to work for seven days with four terrified children, afraid they were going to have all their stuff burn like grandma and grandpa.
Our house was just a couple of miles north of Coffee Park in Santa Rosa. I witnessed the wealthiest parts of my hometown completely disappear overnight.
Fortunately, I had saved some money for a rainy day, or shall I say fire day…
I lost a lot of clients, simply due to the fact their business or homes no longer existed anymore or they decided to leave the state altogether.
A few months after the wildfires happened our landlords informed us we had to move and they were moving into the home we had been living in for the last 5 years. This would not have been such a big deal if the rental market was just and fair.
We could not find any affordable housing in the area so we decided to move across the country.
We had a friend reach out to us saying they had a house for us if we needed it. So we took a leap of faith and moved all of our stuff out to Louisiana.
When we got to the house, we could not move in due to a massive flea infestation.
I found myself crying out to God asking for a miracle to find us our home. After much thought, we decided it would be best to go back to Houston where we knew the Espresso Moon team, and due to the fact the housing was affordable and large enough to accommodate our family of six.
We eventually planted our Christian SEO company in Cypress Texas, about 30 mins north of the downtown Houston area.
This journey was one of the most difficult moves in my life! Driving over 2,100 miles with my wife, four kids, and cat in our minivan. Looking back at this experience, I have realized the obstacles I had faced were actually detours in the right direction.
If you feel like the walls are closing in and there is nothing but darkness surrounding you, don’t give up!! Amazing things are just around the corner. Trust and believe in who you are.
God has always had my family’s back and will for you, too!
Here is a playlist I created that has really helped me process past traumas and focus on gratitude, positivity, and staying present in the moment.