We are Trish & Elise: two moms who met at the local park one day! Our kids played and we began to chat, not knowing the plans God had in "store" for us - pardon the pun!
At the time, Trish had started a small playgroup/potluck in the basement of the Winchester Wesleyan Church and was working full time evenings as a custodian. Elise was running a home daycare at the time. She was part of a ladies Bible study group called Mom's Time Out at the Harmony Church just outside of Winchester.
On that fateful day in the park, Trish had invited Elise to come to her potluck/playgroup, and Elise had invited Trish to join the ladies at Mom's Time Out, but soon after, both groups ended. Elise, out of desperation to get out of the house with the kids and join with other moms, called Trish to see if she was still having her potluck meetings. Trish said that they had actually been put off and she was wondering about continuing them as she was feeling the need for something more than just a play group. So, we decided to start up a new group that we called "Inspirational Mornings". It was a place where mothers and their children could come together. While kids played, the moms found time to watch a short Christian video teaching and spend some time discussing and praying together. Together we were able to witness to other ladies about our faith in Jesus and learn more about Him. Later, we wanted to dig more deeply into His word and we began an evening Bible study for women that we called "Inspirational Evenings". It was during this time of fellowship and serving God that our friendship grew.
Over coffee one morning, we both discovered that God had put similar dreams in our hearts. It turned out we both wanted to open a Christian gift store and to spread the Good News!
Trish had been given a gift of a Bible from a co-worker. That gift of the Bible changed her life forever and led her to a relationship with Jesus Christ. Later, she was baptized and born again! This was the reason she wanted to open a store. The Holy Spirit kept pressing on her spirit to get God's word out to others and His hope into people's hands and hearts.
Elise had managed a flower & gift shop owned by her parents for nearly 13 years. Elise grew up going to the Catholic Church, but as a teen she had turned away from her faith. She always felt that call on her heart though, by a God who pursues our hearts relentlessly. She found herself reading scripture in the little gift books or plaques that were being sold in her store and felt herself being drawn to turn her heart back to God. It is because of her own personal experience that she feels that these kinds of gifts are life changing.
We both know that is why God has partnered us together to share and spread God’s word no matter which doctrine or home church. It’s about a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and what He did for all of us on the cross.
With young families and jobs, we decided an on-line Christian Gift Store would be the best way to start. With our five loaves and two fish, and a whole lot of faith and trust we decided to open Under His Grace On-line Store. With the support of our wonderful families, and after much prayer and planning we were very excited to open April 11th, 2013.
God put the dream of a storefront on our hearts! We were invited to attend the closing celebration for Salem Storehouse Christian Store in Ottawa, and had the privilege of speaking to one of the owners. He shared some wisdom with us, and he had asked Elise what she had done before home daycare. She told him how she was a florist and had managed her parent’s gift store for years before staying home with her children. He said, “ now that would be a great combination: flowers and a Christian gift store”! “ No way”, Elise thought , “I’ve been there done that!” Lol! But we all know how God works, and over the next few years God worked on us changing our hearts and teaching us how to use His word and strengthening our relationship with Him. Since we opened the online store Elise and her family have moved from Winchester, Ontario to Ingleside, Ontario. After a couple of years of working for other flower shops, she came to realize that her former dream of owning her own shop had not died, it had only been set aside for a time.
In October of 2016 we opened a storefront in Ingleside, which just happens to be right across the road from the location along the beautiful St. Lawrence river where we had taken family photos years before to use on our website. God had changed Elise’s heart and she was again using her talents to bless others through her gift of arranging flowers. Elise and her husband Scott opened The Village Green Flower Shop, and in the same space, we opened Under His Grace Christian Gift Store! Two stores in one! This was where God wanted us to be.
So for now, Elise manages Under His Grace Christian Gift Store and The Village Green Flower Shop. Trish helps out when she can - mostly Saturdays as she works fulltime as Chief Custodian at Heritage PS in Navan.
We are excited to see God continue to work on us and through us to help spread the Good News!
Under His Grace Christian Gift Store is a place to help you give the most meaningful gifts, gifts that help strengthen or lead others into a relationship with Jesus Christ. Gifts that remind us of His amazing love for us!
We have both been blessed and touched by gifts given to us over our lives that have spoken God’s truth into our hearts through the power of His Word. It is our hope that through this store, many more hearts will be touched by the gift of God’s Word and truth.
Helping you share the gift of God’s word one gift at a time . . .
Blessings in Christ Jesus,
Trish & Elise
p.s. this was our start-up campaign that we ran Nov. - Dec. 2012 ~