GROW God Reveals Our Way

Episode 004 - Part 1: Interview with Casey Crawford, Co-Founder & CEO Movement Mortgage

November 22, 2023 Angelic Gibson Season 1 Episode 4
GROW God Reveals Our Way
Episode 004 - Part 1: Interview with Casey Crawford, Co-Founder & CEO Movement Mortgage
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Embark on an electrifying journey with your host, Angelic Gibson, as we delve into an exhilarating conversation with the remarkable Casey Crawford in Part 1 of our dynamic interview!

What happens when faith, leadership, and love align in the workplace? The answer lies in an inspiring conversation with Super Bowl champion turned business entrepreneur, Casey Crawford. As the co-founder and CEO of Movement Mortgage, Casey’s commitment to serving God and his community is as evident as his passion for the game of football.

We explore his journey in founding a financial service company that isn't just about the bottom line, but also about giving back to the community, creating a culture that values its people and fostering a workplace environment that embodies 'love one another'. Casey's dedication to living authentically in alignment with his faith, and embodying the teachings of Jesus in the workplace will leave you pondering how you, too, can bring more love and faith into your own community and workplace.

But the love doesn't stop there. With the establishment of the Love Works fund, Movement Mortgage takes the concept of love in the workplace to a whole new level, offering tangible support to its team members in times of dire need. Hear how this program epitomizes the heart of what the company stands for and how the impact it has made on a particular kindergartner’s family exemplifies the power of a love-based work environment. So, tune in, be inspired and discover how you can infuse your own workplace with an ethos of faith, love, and community.

Casey Crawford BIO:

Entrepreneur. Leader. Catalyst.

Casey Crawford is the co-founder and CEO of Movement Mortgage, a $30 billion retail mortgage lender and six-time member of the Inc. 5000 list. He is also the chairman of Movement Bank and founder and chairman of Movement Schools, a network of tuition-free public charter schools committed to teaching world-class academics and virtues in areas where families have historically lacked access to education options. Casey founded the nonprofit Movement Foundation as a vehicle to bring life, light and hope to others. To date, it has invested more than $260 million in schools, communities and ministries around the world.  

Casey has been recognized as a John Maxwell Transformational Leadership Award recipient, Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year finalist, HousingWire Vanguard award recipient, and a Charlotte Business Journal Most Admired CEO. He has been featured by national media outlets, including CNBC, Bloomberg, The Wall Street Journal, Fox News, Fox Business, Inc. Magazine and HousingWire.

A Super Bowl champion, Casey played tight end for the NFL’s Carolina Panthers and Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 2000-2003. He graduated from the University of Virginia with All-ACC honors in football and academics. Casey is an avid outdoorsman and accomplished Brazilian jiu-jitsu competitor. He lives outside Charlotte, N.C., with his wife, Michelle, and daughters, Cadie and Josie.

Speaker 1:

Thank you for tuning in to this episode of Grow, where God reveals our way. I'm Anjali Gibson, your host, and I can't wait to explore the vast riches of God's Word with you. So don't forget to subscribe and stay tuned for upcoming episodes packed with biblical teachings, inspirational stories and a fresh perspective on the world around us. Now let's get started on this beautiful journey. May God bless you abundantly.

Speaker 2:

Welcome back to the Grow podcast where today I have the privilege of bringing you an interview with Casey Crawford. If you are not familiar with Casey, I have included in the show notes his complete bio, but he is a phenomenal man of God. He knows how to live out loud in love for the Lord in the marketplace. I mentioned him at the close of episode three as a teaser that he would be coming onto the show, but I really think you're going to be blessed by this interview. And just a reminder that I did mention I'm going to break this interview into two parts. As Casey and I did spend an hour of time together discussing various topics, I wanted to make it more digestible to you, the listener. So this will be an interview broken into two parts. You will be fully blessed, so I encourage you to listen from the beginning to the end of both parts so you don't miss a beat.

Speaker 2:

But Casey is absolutely incredible. He is the co-founder and CEO of Movement Mortgage, an absolutely incredible company that literally spans our nation. He's done several other things. He's been recognized and he has been winning awards left and right across several of very prestigious organizations, including John Maxwell and Ernest and Young several others, and not only that, he is a Super Bowl champion. So if all that other goodness wasn't enough, yes, casey has had the honor of being a part of a Super Bowl win. So without further ado, I'm going to get this interview started. Enjoy. Hello, mr Casey Crawford. Welcome to the Grow podcast. It's so wonderful to have you on today.

Speaker 3:

I am excited to be on this. This is going to be super fun.

Speaker 2:

It is, and I just want to start by thanking you for not counting at robbery to give your time to the Lord today. We know you're a very busy man and when you shared with me that you just felt the Holy Spirit said say yes to this invitation. It blessed my heart immensely and it is so good to have you.

Speaker 3:

Well, no, it really is good to be here. You know you told the story, but when I got your invite and heard just what your passion was for being a person that is in the marketplace like myself, and then also just kind of talking through what that looks like, feels like and how the Lord is leading and guiding some other conversations in this space, I did I kind of pray about every podcast invitation and this one man. I just felt like we're supposed to do it. So I can't wait to get into it because I think God's got something for someone here to this conversation, so I'm excited to have it with you.

Speaker 2:

I love that. I want to share with my listeners just a little bit of why God put you on my heart and why it's such a critical moment in time right now to have your testimony of what you're doing for the Lord. Just shared as many places as possible. So, just to kind of start off, you have street cred and you have eternal cred. So what does that mean? I mean, the word on the street is that you're a remarkable leader.

Speaker 2:

I have the privilege of leading in the Charlotte community Charlotte, north Carolina and you're in this community as well and you have a reputation that goes before you, and so to have high credibility and for people to give witness to the type of leader you are, it speaks volumes and it encourages other leaders in the marketplace who are serving alongside with you Eternal cred. I mean I've listened to you at Prayer Breakfast. We have both graduated the master's program, which we can talk about if we want. But just people who know you and know your heart know that you're not in it for Casey, you're in it for God, and that just is so encouraging as a leader in the marketplace serving our community as well.

Speaker 2:

So thank you for that.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, no, thanks just to. I think I'd be remiss if I didn't say that means so much like in a reputation. I mean I just talked to my kids about this a lot and I, you know, you read those proverbs when you're little and that reputation is, you know, good reputation is way bigger than gold and all that kind of thing. And you're like I don't know if you get that as you get older in life you realize the relationship you've had, that you know 20 years later come to play an important role in your life and maybe how you carry yourself in your 20s. So you know, some ways I'm horrified and thank my gosh, I guess that one better.

Speaker 3:

But genuinely like I mean everything we've got to do here in Charlotte or anything I've got to do has been such a blessing to me, and so you know as much as absolutely there's a, there's a sense in which you know that we want to serve Jesus as Lord and God as Lord. You know that truly, I think the Lord has. He brought us to Charlotte, for instance I guess our home and so the fact that we've got to reinvest into this community is great, because I want to be a strong, healthy city. You know that I want to be a part of, I want my kids to flourish and thrive and I want all the kids in Charlotte to flourish and thrive and there's a deep sense of, I think, joy. You know that comes from being a part of a community that you're pouring into and ingrained in in multiple ways. You know, not just maybe in your little neighborhood but in a much broader sense. And so you know we just got to go cut the ribbon on a new school on the North side town. It's 45 minutes from where I live, so I don't interact in that part of town a ton.

Speaker 3:

But man, like my heart just exploded, like with joy, be able to high five kiddos you know that I wouldn't have otherwise met right and so so like I really do appreciate when people say, hey, thanks for reporting back into the city in this way of this. But like genuinely also like the Lord, like the amount of joy that God gives me and being able to do this stuff is like very selfishly incredible, like I feel so lucky to get together. This is not, it's not out of a sense of burden or obligation, is actually just out of like a real deep place of enjoyment and fulfillment. You know they come. They come from being a part of these things. So thank you for the kind words and I was just literally just thank God for the privilege of getting to do what we get to do, because I pinch myself every day that I get to wake up and do any of this.

Speaker 2:

I just love that. You know some. A question just kind of came to mind as you were sharing that there's so much that you and your team and movement we're just doing in and through our community. But just let's start with where does the passion and inspiration like, where does it come from? Clearly you have your strong man of faith, like, really, what is it that stirs your heart? And you know you said you love high five in the kids and just meeting kids. You've never would have had the opportunity to meet. So where does that heart for the community and the kids come from?

Speaker 3:

I think. So growing up, I think a lot of times you look back to your past, understand you, where you are and where you may be going and growing up. I grew up in in around DC in the 80s and 90s and for those of you that don't know, dc in the 80s was the, was the was the gosh murder capital of the world. Actually, we had more murders per capita in DC than any city in the world three times the murder rate of Chicago today, and DC is like a tenth the size of Chicago, right. So it was like hyper concentrated mass violence, mass poverty, just ravaged by the crack epidemic. That was that was going on. And my dad had a hardware store in southeast DC which was the worst part of DC like. So we're like the epicenter of kind of crack epidemic and gang violence. At one point my father and I were the only two people in the hardware store who hadn't murdered someone like my manager done in years and 11 worth for for murder when he was 17, and so I kind of grew up seeing a lot of like, just the difficulty of what some of our DCs look like. You know it felt like and and yet I got to retreat out of that like at night and on the weekends and things, back to just a very humble kind of blue collar house but mom, dad, stable, neighborhood, relatively you know, safe, relatively safe relative to kind of what I was seeing when I went to work with my dad kind of every day. And you know, I think, as I grew up and you know process of stuff as a seven, eight year old, but they kind of look back, you know, even when I got to high school and college I realized, man, that a lot of my friends have been involved in gang violence or locked up and things. I would have been doing the exact same thing, they would have been doing the exact same thing they were doing and likely would not have made it out of that community and situation had I been born into it and had I not had this, this kind of safe place to retreat to. And that's a tough thing to process, you know, that's a tough thing to process. Kind of burden me.

Speaker 3:

And I also at that same time got to go to a little Catholic high school on the south side of DC called the math. That was a basketball powerhouse, football powerhouse. It was 800. All guys, teeny little, a really small kind of kind of very humble little Catholic high school and I think I that high school I got to see, you know, senator, sons and kids who lived in public housing come together. We all wore uniforms. No one knew you know who's dad had what or who came in and what, but we were there to get an education and play ball and that, that, that institution of education really be given kind of it for a lot of guys to, to get out of what was another wise, difficult environment and again didn't process all that. You know, and I was like I high school, this vision, oh man, we're going to go to schools for kids are in tough situations now from break the chains of poverty. But I absolutely, you know God, kind of embedded some of those experiences in my story and you know it was always a big, gigantic kids.

Speaker 3:

I was playing football and baseball and basketball and things went on to play football, you know the University of Virginia, and went on play for the Carolina Panthers and and got fired after a couple years the Carolina Panthers. I was in my home the first time. I was like don't watch you all, my team, oh God, what the world you call me this one. You know he's supposed to see me through it, all that kind of stuff. And a few hours later got to sign with the campaign Buccaneers and I was. You know I was the least significant guy on the team but got to be a part of the Super Bowl championship team that season.

Speaker 3:

It was absolutely incredible, was absolutely incredible zone. It's like whirlwind kind of thing. And you know my dad, just one of my best friends, and you know, incredible, like mentor, leader in my life, man of faith, and you know my wife, my wife now and then find my mom and I was like I'm not going to be here. You know where she's, at the game with me, my mom. You know we're holding one bar to trophy on the fifth yard line and confetti is coming down. And you're seeing my life with my Jovey on the fifth yard, like happy one of the Super Bowl and I you know again that I played like no meaningful role in any of that season hardly, but. But I also like had a sense of completion, like like God. Thank you so much for this incredible experience.

Speaker 3:

If I was a little boy and you'd ask me, what do you want to do when you grow up, I think I went to Super Bowl. You know I was a plane and I went like, and at the same time, after that game I had this real sense of like, completion, that completed and it was an incredible experience, was an incredible start in life, always thankful for the NFL and that time, but I was done with it and I really prayed on the plane ride home. You know God, with this one life like this one life I had to live, I feel like I've already had a lifetime of experience with it. I've gotten to see what a lot of folks chase their whole lives for and I've gotten to wake up and realize that. So I'm so grateful for the experience. Man, like tomorrow comes and there wasn't a sense of deep fulfillment in the entertainment business of football or even winning a world championship and having a ring.

Speaker 2:

Isn't that amazing.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, it's. You know, chasing the brass ring, I got this. I got the Tiffany's design Super Bowl ring, right with Warren Sap designed our ring. It's all bling down diamonds. I mean. Got that and went, man, like what what next? And remember here in Darrell Green, who a hero of mine had been a deep defensive back for the Washington Redskins while I was growing up and he said in the pregame of Super Bowl, was watching, really said you know the Super Bowl rings you one never would compare to the, to the, to the feeling of fulfillment you got pouring into the life of one kid and this thing kind of fades and it's a nice event and experience, but but there's lack of fulfillment. So I'm just praying, guy, give me an opportunity.

Speaker 3:

That's my life, not an entertainment but an eternal impact like just use me in a way that's unique, that would bring about impact, and so I didn't know what that meant or what that looked like. But in in 07, when the, with the mortgage market, kind of crashed and created the great recession of, we as an industry and nation exported, I think, more hurt and evil and sin than ever had been done, financially, at least, around the world. What a cool opportunity. Like would this be a chance for us to step into that backdrop and tell a new, better story, you know, a new, better story of how a financial service company could take its profits and pour back into their community in a meaningful way and build a culture that loved and valued the people that were in the institution. You know, because a lot of those institutions were not known for that for how they loved and valued even teammates.

Speaker 3:

And that's what I wanted. You know, angelique, that was, and I think that's maybe the selfish thing throughout this. I love pouring into Charlotte because I love it, like it gives me a ton of joy, like it's really me, and I said, man, what would it look like to build the company you always wanted to work for? You know, the one that like, where you're on a team of, like, committed professionals that did their job with excellence. You were also in a place that, like, loved you and cared about you and knew that, like, sometimes life falls off the rails and when it does, I think you know the beauty of of the Christian communities that were called the love one another.

Speaker 3:

Like love one another in those hard times, and all of us have them. Like, all of us have them, all of us. And I want to be a part of a community that has that and does that. And then, finally, I want to be locked arms with a team that has a purpose that's bigger than ourselves. You know. It has a purpose that's outside of just the community we're a part of or the product that we produce. So that's why we named it movement. We want to be a movement of change and kind of inspire a bigger idea of what companies can be as we just walk out that really simple mandate and scripture of like love God, love people. We have people from like every faith walk you know you could imagine, and no faith at all as a part of our community and my commitment to each of them is that they will be loved, they will be valued.

Speaker 3:

And we ask the same of them Like, and we define love like this we real quick, I'll stop, we'll go to the next one. But we say you know the same at the math how high school freeze right on the board. For me said to love is to act in the longterm best interest of another. So if you're gonna be a part of this community movement, you got to commit to bringing your whole self every day and acting in the longterm best interest of your teammates, our customers and the communities we're a part of. Right, commit to those three things. Man, you are our kind of person and you're in and we love you and move our walk arms with you, and so that was kind of the genesis of the journey we're on right now.

Speaker 2:

I love that. There's so much that you said, and I just want to highlight a couple of things. So, first of all, god promises that when we commit our ways to him, he will give us the desires of our heart, and that is what you just described. So, as you do for the Lord, you're getting the enjoyment out of it because your heart is aligned to God's heart, and that is so critically important.

Speaker 2:

I think oftentimes, when we're in our role, we have different roles in life. Whether you know, you're operating as a father, me as a mother, a husband or a wife, or a leader in the marketplace, or serving at church on a Sunday, or what have you, we tend to want to be different from who God created us to be, in a various role. So I may be one person at home, or I might be another person in the marketplace, at work, and I might be a different person on church on Sunday. I think what we're really highlighting today is how do you live authentically in alignment with the Lord and you don't have to leave your faith at home. Matter of fact, if you leave your faith at home, you're actually not honoring and being obedient to God, and so to bring the love of Christ into the marketplace is the ingredient that's needed. Billy Graham said before he passed that the great next revival will come through the marketplace and it's efforts like you're describing. We're gonna get into what it means fully to be a movement and the work you're doing, but the work you're doing is the work that's needed to truly bring the next great revival. I believe that, and when I hear about the work that you're doing, you and all your teammates, I just wanna read from Matthew 25, verses 35 through 40, because this is really the call that Jesus tells us to do. He doesn't put boundaries. If you're at home, do this. If you're at work, do this. If you're in the temple on Sunday, do this.

Speaker 2:

Now he says this is what you need to do, for I was hungry and you gave me something to eat. I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink. I was a stranger and you invited me in. I needed clothes and you clothed me. I was sick and you looked after me. I was in prison and you came to visit me. Then the righteous will answer him, lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? When did we see you, a stranger, and invite you in. We're needing clothes and cloth you. When did we see you sick or in prison and go visit you? And the king will reply truly, I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me, and so all the work is doing it for him, and the fruit speaks for itself. Amen.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, I'm so glad you read that. That past your scripture and I tell you Did. This whole journey for me has been one In so many ways. Like I grew up, great family, mom and dad were really strong In their faith and then part of that to me, my little sister's, kiddos. I don't remember a time honestly my life, where I didn't have some kind of understanding of a hope and faith in Christ. I really don't. People always one of the big Conversion moment. I just I there's not a time out life. I don't remember having a faith in Jesus. I understand that he had done something for me. I understood San Luis in deeper, more meaningful ways as I got older, but always kind of.

Speaker 3:

And yet I Never totally felt at home inside of a church, the church community sometimes, and maybe that's because I was a bit of a mud. I was a Lutheran when I was really little and then we went to the Piscopal church. That was just awesome and great and then I decided I was not gonna go to church anymore. When I was like 16 I was like I was just old enough to figure all this stuff out. I was at a Catholic high school that I really loved also and loved so much about the Catholic tradition and then I went to a non-denominational church and I was kind of discipled in a IA and FCA from sports and things, and then with like RTS and went to like a little bit of seminary school afterwards. Try to like so just this, this, this hot spot, so maybe, maybe that that is what.

Speaker 3:

But I always had this little thing of not quite, not quite fitting in like a the confines of a church and some of it, some of it, I think, was just a disconnect of the things that I read in the Bible, like that beautiful scripture that you just read. And Then my experience, you know, my inside the walls of a church, and there wasn't anything wrong necessarily with like what happened inside the walls of church in my experience, but it was so such a small sliver of the Christian life and like we'd go and I remember, like you get awards for how much of scripture we memorized when I was growing up in DC and yet like five miles from our church, some of the deepest was troubled poverty in the United States and never do I remember like going down and engaging, you know it's hard to reckon so, yeah, walking out those verses a little bit, and so, and I think the really beautiful thing, you know, folks always ask me how can you run a you know a price center business with so many people from different walks of life?

Speaker 3:

It's, you know, if you're a person who doesn't believe in loving the marginalized, probably not a great fit for our community. Like, but the rehearse the good news. Like most people, I think, in having an innate sense that there's a goodness of being part of a Collective, in a community that cares for the marginalized right, cares for the elderly, cares for the poor, cares for the homeless, cares for the widow, cares the orphan, cares for those in prison like you. If you ask, you know, I'd say 95% of America is probably gonna tell you hey, we think it's, it's a good and right thing to care for the marginalized and and so, you know, we just try to walk that stuff out.

Speaker 3:

Okay, if we all believe this, do our actions align with it? You know, do our actions align with it? And then give people an opportunity to let their actions align with what they say, they believe and it's. It's really encouraging me and Julie just how much commonality we have with our fellow American or fellow, like citizen of the world, in terms of, just like the innate goodness of what we know, healthy community can and shouldn't look like that. Isn't that different than what Jesus describes in scripture? You know, I think you like it.

Speaker 3:

Oh gosh, we have to live so differently and man, there's just so much. I think that we can do that so much more inviting in terms of Christian culture that Unfortunately it isn't lived out as much sometimes on the and you can't, you can't for one hour on Sunday, right, like so. I'm not Fresh in the church, I hope by any means, but but it's easier to do, frankly, the workplace when we have 4050 hours a week together, all day long, all week long, and can really lock arms together in a more meaningful way.

Speaker 2:

Well, I think I mean you're touching on something that's super important Either. Sometimes people just don't know how to engage a particular issue. How do they actually help someone? People generally don't know how to do that, and sometimes, if the church isn't creating the opportunity, they're kind of out there waiting for the opportunity to come their way. And I think one of the things that my church really leans heavy into if you see a gap in serving the community, that we don't have something to offer, then God's calling you to rise up and to create it.

Speaker 3:

Don't wait and create a podcast, the grow podcast.

Speaker 2:

Yeah there you go.

Speaker 3:

Yes, yes, and that's what we do in the marketplace. Right, that's what business to do. Like we solve problems for compensation. Every business figures out the problem they're going to solve for the world and the world's going to tell you how valuable that is and like we do that. The tough thing with like, I think, ministry or mercy is there's not often a compensation model for the problem that you see, that you're solving right, like and that. So then you kind of start checking motivations.

Speaker 3:

Like all right, I do want to solve this problem. So yeah, that's good.

Speaker 2:

Well, we're going to start breaking down loving God and loving people, and what this means in and through the work that you do each and every day. And, listeners, what I really want you to hear and hear, for is there's several facets of this body of work that KC and team are leading. I would love for you just to imagine yourself being able to do something similar. You could be thinking to yourself well, I am in my place of work. I don't have a CEO who has the heart and passion like KC, so I can't start something like this. You can, if you ask God. He's going to create a pathway and doors will start opening to you. So don't look at the constraints that may be popping up in your mind. Just think of the possibilities, because God is a God of possibilities. He does the impossible.

Speaker 2:

So I'm just going to pray real quick, KC, before we actually start getting into this, because I really want God to open the eyes and the hearts of the people to see them themselves in the work that you're doing, because they can be a solution in our community as well. So, father, we just thank you again for this time that you've given us today, as we really get in and just celebrate and give you glory for the work that you've been doing in and through loving God and loving people, the movement story. Lord, we just ask that you open the eyes and the hearts of the people listening, that you give them new vision, new hope that we are. They are the answer that our community so desperately needs, that it takes one person to lift the torch for the torch to start to spread to other people. So, lord, we thank you for the fire that you're igniting and all the listeners hearts and that you are making a way where there seems not to be a way, because you are the waymaker. In the name of Jesus, we pray Amen.

Speaker 3:

Amen Amen.

Speaker 2:

Okay.

Speaker 3:

Yep. So I love how you frame that and it is. It's funny, the one thing we hear people go oh gosh, that's great, you do this program, but you have 5,000 employees and you have all this and the other. And you know, and I could never. And so I have good news, like for the listener, I've given you some listeners.

Speaker 3:

I won't break this stuff down to the most because our story starts in the most humble of ways with 14 members. You know that a little company I was starting with 14 mates and everything's been done organically and I will say that that man well, absolutely I can. I would guess in any man that Jesus is the waymaker. Again, he also, like we play an active role in this right and so, so, so, like this following out these mandates that Christ gives us, like it's amazing to watch, as you kind of like always think about that Indiana Jones scene where he's stepping across the bridge and it looks like he's going to fall off into the abyss and he goes and steps, boom, his foot hits the rock right and like it's kind of like the guide comes up to meet your foot as you step out in faith to follow you know the way he has called you to live and leave. And so I think one of the very first things we did at movement that was so profound is we kind of said all right, you know, we know at some point we wanted to give and we hope we want to do some interesting things as a company. But like we never. We always want to make sure we took care of our family first, like we took care of our team members first. We never want to be giving way far away if we had deep needs at home. And so we said, hey, we just kind of made it known culturally that if someone was going through an economic challenge, just let one of us know, like let one of us know, and my partner and I would get together and you know just to kind of the evolution of the company from four folks to 20 to 40, to like 100 folks, it was just kind of culturally understood that if there was a teammate that had like a deep economic need, they just need to let it be known and other teammates would come alongside of man, we pay a rent bill or fix an air conditioning unit or help somebody repair a car or what not.

Speaker 3:

And that was because we just said we want to be a part of the community. I want that, I want my, I want my little girls to be a part of the community. That when life falls off the rails and it will, amen that was not economically, it's not just emotionally that there are a lot of ways it will get there Part of the community is going to say I'm there, I'm there for you, I care for you, right? So that was super simple, like super simple stuff. It's not super simple. And, man, as we, as we grew and as we, we go, wow, we actually have to start to formalize and put programs and processes in to support this culture that we believe is is just good and right. Right, it's just good and right. So if you lead it, if you lead a team of two, you know, let your other teammate know. Hey, I just want you to know, like, like, I didn't get. That might look like just a word of encouragement with somebody down, it might look like Pramp, but but it's creating a culture that says I'm going to be there for you and I want you there for me also in times of need. You know, in times of need, and you know, as we kind of matured along by the way we steal, and robustly and aggressively, from everyone.

Speaker 3:

But my partner sent me a book called Love Works. The guy named Joel Mamby wrote about her. Some family entertainment Great they gollywood and the globetrotters much of interesting, interesting properties, great things. And they talk about an employee fund. There was a formal fund that employees gave to every month and was there for any other employees in times of economic need. And, wow, perfect. That's a formal system that they kind of expresses our heart of what we're trying to do.

Speaker 3:

We took it, we packaged it up, we made it maybe a little bit better or whatever. We named it Love Works to honor Joel and our family. And today we have about 70 percent of our team members every month Some some it's a dollar, you know, out of the payroll we have. We've got teammates give you tens of thousands of dollars to the fund and we used to match it dollars for dollars, to match a dollar for dollar and that money would sit in a pool for any employee in times of need. Our team are passionate about this fund that I don't even match it anymore, like I give to it as an employee. But the foundation doesn't match anymore and it's just self funding. We do about 400 grants a year for between a million and a million and a half dollars a year to teammates in times of dire need, and I got to share a report.

Speaker 3:

Actually, this morning we had a kindergartner at movement school. We have moved, we've moved schools, hopefully we'll get into this but she was struck in the head by a bullet in the drop last year and it was a third time our house had been shot out from and mom was terrified. Of course. You know grandma and the Love Works Fund got to step in and help her family transition to safe housing. And this morning I got to share a picture of that precious kindergarten with our principal. She held movement schools back at school. You know, back at school she didn't look good. It was really tough. The whole community came around her was praying for her and her family and full recovery.

Speaker 3:

She's now back in school as a first grader, her family's living in a safe home and you know we just kind of go, man, isn't that kind of community we want to be a part of, like we're caring for needs that exist, like that, and I can think, like Love Works giving goes right up and everyone's like, yes, I want to go, do this.

Speaker 3:

I want to be a part of that, and we've just seen God do just that little statement and measure him much more than we could hope we're managing according to his power and purpose, through just like these little acts, just like really simple things of like kind of be faithfully, you know, loving and serving one another, and I think it's also it's also total out of ground, to plant seeds of faith in people that maybe had a really hard heart towards God.

Speaker 3:

They had a bad experience with church. They had a bad experience with, you know, maybe a Christian. They'd heard some things when, oh, I thought that Christianity was about this. When they learned, like you know, like the heart of the gospel was one of like sacrificially loving folks that were in need, me being the first among those, they were far more open to hearing more about the story of Jesus and who he is. Now he loves us when they see that expressed, I think, in tangible ways in the workplace. So it's been, it's that's been an amazing kind of precursor to having more in depth spiritual conversations with, with, with team members who were interested in exploring that kind of thing.

Speaker 2:

Yeah, well, we never know either. Like what, what hurt and baggage is a person bringing into a conversation? You know, when we start talking about faith, a lot of people have a lot of hurt around faith because they haven't actually experienced love in action. And God is love in action, you know. Love the Lord, your heart, with all your love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, mind and soul, and love your neighbor as yourself. And if we really think about that like this, love works. Love your teammates.

Speaker 2:

This notion of start with love meet the basic need, show the heart of Jesus. It actually starts to build an emotional tank, if you will like an emotional investment fund, where people will want to withdraw out of that bank account of emotional trust to actually hear what we have to say about the love of God. But the trust has to be there first and that comes through love. So I love that. I would love to hear a story. So again, we're talking about all the work you and your team are doing, loving God, loving people, and one facet of love is through what you just described, love works and it's caring for those in the inner circle and then starting to love out. Can you give us a story. You shared a story about a fellow teammate that you have and what are you saying? He was kind of, you know, rough in nature maybe. Yeah, and just his pathway through living these small acts of love out how it actually leads to eternal reward. Do you mind sharing a story?

Speaker 3:

Sure, yes, so so. So there's three real big pillars of ways we try to like walk that I've tried to kind of guess maybe. Walk out my faith and express it culturally in movement. Again, all of them, all of them, I really want to be invitations, you know, just like invitations to people in the into a community that loves and values one another and then, if they're open to it, they're interested in it, through that process comes to know a God who loves them and so passionately, beyond, beyond, maybe what they could even imagine, and love works is one of those.

Speaker 3:

First right, it's kind of a benevolence fun would be the equivalent. The church is just to say, hey, we're going to care for each other. And then we said that we hope that man, we've care for each other. Let's just get a bigger picture of the world. Let's get a bigger picture of the world. But let's realize, man, especially in the United States, we can get a really, really ethnic center kind of small picture of the world, sometimes so like, let's be intentional to go out around the world and meet some new friends living in, living in some sometimes like some really difficult, challenging places that have a faith, and like that might be, might be just really stretching to us. And so we we started doing what we call vision trips and and we said, you know what we're going to, we're going to try to expand our vision of what we're going to do and how we can impact it in meaningful ways. And there's no precursor. These trips are for people of faith and not a faith or people of courage. Right, this is okay, I'm going to expand my vision.

Speaker 3:

And so my partner to be here is organized a strip to Guatemala, and Guatemala, off the coast, is known for good fishing and so Toby loves to fish. You call a few guys say, hey, you guys want to go fish with me and Guatemala for a few days, and guys say, yeah, love to go fish, love, love. You go. Okay, we're going to visit a couple friends down there that are building a couple things, and then we're going to go off shore. And I said, okay, you know, set sounds great.

Speaker 3:

And so one of those is are now present a guy named Mike Brian and who's an incredible, just incredible brother in Christ I just absolutely love dearly. And you know my Mike, mike Mike was a guy. He kind of said he had been to you know service a couple times maybe, growing up race Catholic kind of, went Christmas and Easter two or three times. That was it. He's like man, I knew who was a new case he was. He's a person of faith and I just went. That's great, that's great, I'm all about like a good moral company. I like that. Mike's got you know two tat sleeves up up now, both arms, and I think he had 20 something felonies before he was 18 or 18 or so.

Speaker 1:

Hello, listeners, it's that time in the interview where we need to pause so we can move over to part two. It also means that I interrupted an incredible story that Casey was sharing in regards to his friend Mike.

Speaker 2:

So you'll want to come back, listen to part two to hear how the story of Mike unfolds, as well as many other inspirational stories. We will see you at part two.

Speaker 1:

Thank you for joining us on this episode of grow, where God reveals our way. We hope you found inspiration, wisdom and encouragement as we continue on this faith filled journey together. We invite you to subscribe to grow so you never miss an episode. Stay tuned for more biblical teachings, heartfelt testimonies and insights that will nourish your spirit in deep in your relationship with God. We appreciate your support and participation in this podcast. Until next time, may you grow in faith, love and knowledge of his divine plan. May God bless you abundantly.

An Interview With Casey Crawford
Building a Purposeful Community and Company
Living Authentically, Bringing Christ's Love
Build Supportive Company Community
Love Works