Thursday, October 27, 2011

preach the gospel 316

Hey there friends! As you know, I am not above shamelessly promoting things I am passionate about...which up till now generally have been music related (ahem, cough NEEDTOBREATHE cough cough).  Well, today I would like to introduce you to George Azar, owner and creative mind behind Preach the Gospel 316.  I recently met him through a mutual friend, and there were three things that struck me about him: 1) this guy LOVES Jesus  2) he is probably the happiest person I have ever met  3) give him 2 minutes and he'll be your friend.  Add all these things to a God-given vision and you have a business that is inspired.

Anyway, I have never done an interview on here before, but I am happy to make George hopefully the first of many!  Here we go!

>>Tell us a little bit about yourself.

"Oh man, where do I begin! I am currently a bible college student who serves on staff part time at my church. I also work part-time at Costco as my “tent making” job.

There is nothing I love doing more on my free-time than to hang out with people. I love getting to know people and to see them grow in the Lord. I also LOVE to laugh! I enjoy clean humor and desire to see more solid, funny Christian comedy!"

>>What inspired you to start your own business?
"I always had the desire to start my own business. Since I was a little kid, I knew that hiding behind the grasp of another’s provision wasn’t my cup of tea. I desired at a very young age to start a coffee shop, but once the Lord grabbed a hold of me, He began to refine my desires as He grew me in His word. About 3 years ago, I was given the opportunity to learn about graphic design at a graphics firm. It was then I realized my love was in the arts and desired to start a shirt company. “Oh sure it will be Christian, but I want to design shirts,” was my thought. About a year later, I lost my job and was on a “graphics block.” The Lord literally stopped my creative flow as He channeled my waters elsewhere. It was in this time I came to know the Lord in a deeper way as He cultivated a heart inside of me for the gospel going forth through an internship I did with my church. About a year ago, the Lord gave me my creative streak back as I was asked to design a flier for the high school group. It was shortly after that the Lord placed the shirt business back on my heart as Preach the Gospel 316 was born March 28, 2011."

>>Tell us the heart behind Preach the Gospel 316.

"The sole purpose of Preach the Gospel 316 is to further the good news of Jesus Christ by boldly demonstrating your faith through apparel. My heart for this business is that Jesus Christ solely gets the glory as I am merely the pen in His hands. Preach the Gospel 316 is what I like to call a profit, non-profit business. Let me explain...all funds that come into the business are then turned around to fund other aspects of the business. Whether it be producing more designs or giving to gospel-centered ministries, I do not draw any personal profit from the business (hence the “tent making” job at Costco)."

>>What is your favorite part of running this business/ministry?

"I would have to say the best part of running this business is being able to attend events. I have met some extraordinary people who have such a love and passion for Jesus! Every time I get to go to a show, I become more inspired as I am given the opportunity to meet some amazing people."

>>Which is your favorite shirt and why?

"I would have to say my favorite shirt is “Preach the Gospel.” This shirt is a symbol to me in so many ways. This was the very first design I was able to produce by the Lord’s grace for this business. It also contains my utmost favorite city, San Francisco. My love and passion to see the gospel go forth in “The City” is one I cannot claim as my own, but given to me by the Lord. This shirt symbolizes the simplicity in sharing your faith by using the gifts the Lord has given you and the passion in sharing His good news!"

>>If you could pick one famous person to wear one of your shirts for a day, who would it be?

"I would love to see Lecrae wearing one of my shirts because he shares the same desire I do: to see the gospel of Jesus Christ go forth regardless of social pressures! Lecrae’s music has been a motivation for me to continue to seek the only thing worth seeking: Jesus Christ! If he was to wear one of my shirts, it would only be confirmation of our co-laboring for the gospel’s sake."

>>If time and money were no object, what would you like to do, either with this business or beyond?

"My desire is to become a pastor, but in regards to the business, I would love to see the business grow throughout the nation and world. I would love to see the good news of Jesus Christ boldly demonstrated for all to see as people are presented with the opportunity to meet their maker and lover. I have seen so many shirt companies start off with good motives, yet have sold out to the culture as the message of Jesus is drowned out by artistic expressions. I would love to see this business become larger and bolder for the glory of God!"

>>Who are some people you look up to and why?

"There are two people who come to mind: Pastor Jack Arnold and Pastor Britt Merrick

My Pastor (Jack Arnold) has been the greatest example to me as a pastor who loves his flock and desires to see people raised up. I have personally been a partaker of his pastoring as a year ago he asked me to oversee our outreach ministry. Since that time, he has poured into me as Paul poured into Timothy. Pastor Jack became our senior pastor a year and a half ago when our former senior pastor was called to London to start a fellowship there. In the short amount of time as senior pastor, I have seen Pastor Jack used phenomenally for the kingdom of Christ as he serves as a living example of Christ’s power administered through His elect. His love to see pastors raised up has been inspiring and I am completely and utterly grateful for his reckless abandonment to Jesus Christ!

Pastor Britt Merrick comes to mind as well because he was the pastor I was raised up under as a new believer. The Lord used him to set the foundation in my life and gave me a solid Biblical perspective on topical issues concerning the Christian life. To this day, I can remember the moment I approached Pastor Britt about my desire to attend Bible college and become a pastor. He confirmed my desire and built me up in guiding me in the direction to peruse a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ. His unwavering love and encouragement towards me has served as a fundamental foundation in who I am today. I still listen to his podcasts to this day as the Lord ministers exactly what I need to hear through him. Thank you Pastor Britt for your example and surrender to Jesus!"

So there you have it, folks.  I love that there are so many great ways to share the gospel!  Check out his website (see button below), like it on Facebook or follow on Twitter!  More importantly, check out his shirts and buy one, or two or three and use it to start a conversation.  You never know what great life changes could happen as a result!

1 comment:

Emily w/Amazing Grapes said...

Great 1st interview! I'll have to check out his website for sure. Sounds like he definitely has a heart for Jesus and want He wants him to do.

So cool!