"Are You a Hidden Pearl?"
We are God's pearl of great price.
Our featured guest Ms. Kibby Blakely's life reflects many of the attributes found within the hidden treasure and the pearl of great price in Matthew 13:44 & Matthew 13:45-46.
Having grown up in up in a loving Godly home as one of six children in Jacksonville, Florida; she recalls being an introvert without a voice. Per Ms. Kibby, "My cousin Kathy had to do all of the talking for me."
Although she has fond memories of her hometown, Ms. Kibby shared that spending most of her childhood summers in our beloved family hometown of Penny Farms, Florida were by far the best memories ever. Penny Farms has special meaning for my cousin Kibby and most of our family. It where our family legacy started and currently remains. Our late uncle, Reverend John T. Haymon made history in our small town. He ran for political office and became the first African American to become a city official in the town. I will go out on a limb to say that our uncle set into motion the passion for service, entrepreneurship, outside-the-box thinking and zeal for leadership that runs vividly through the veins of most our family members. Ms. Kibby breaks out with an infectious smile as she speaks with joy about all the fun, she had with our first cousins The Haymon’s (AKA the fictive daughter of Reverend, Uncle John T., and Aunt Mamie Haymon).
Ms. Kibby is no stranger to academia; she is a graduate of Troy University where she received her BSN degree and the University of North Florida where she received her master's degree in health education with a specialty in the promotion of health. She currently works as a nurse in the homecare setting and has done so the last 31-years of her 35-year nursing career.
Seven years ago, Ms. Kibby stumbled into a hobby of Balloon Artistry and hence Balloons by Kibby was founded. Per Ms. Kibby, “I can't stop thanking God for such a consoling gift. I have been able to incorporate both balloons and nursing to make others feel better. Nursing is truly a calling, and the balloons are a gift.”
Per Ms. Kibby, “Sometimes the Lord desires for us to see beyond the surface even at the risk of being misunderstood. At the risk of people questioning what value I see in a brightly colored rubber sac inflated with air and then sealed at the neck. Why do I work tirelessly, as a nurse all day grinding away to treat my patients with dignity and respect; then spend most of my evenings and weekends passionately creating balloon sculptures.”
Ms. Kibby’s love for balloon artistry reminds me of the parable of the hidden treasure and the pearl in Matthew 13:44 & Matthew 13:45-46. In this passage of scripture, God reveals His great love towards us. The treasure in the field and pearl of great price represents you and me. So, God came down as a man, Jesus Christ and paid the ultimate price to get us back. Could it be that Ms. Kibby is re-purposing the balloons into something outside of their superficial makeup? Society expects us to look at things a certain way; yet what happens when you perceive things from a unique perspective.
We are reminded that even though we may feel like a lump of clay, we are diamonds hidden in the rough. Jesus’ sacrifice tells us how much He treasures us. He looks at our imperfections and failings and still sees something valuable.
Likewise, Ms. Kibby’s continuously finds hidden treasures as she creates magnificent balloon masterpieces; all while serving others, loving others, bringing hope to others, and drawing them to Jesus.
Ms. Kibby’s beautiful balloon work is a direct reflection of the deep gratitude for what God has done for her. Her livelihood comes from recognizing the real value of things that others underestimate.
Balloons by Kibby Facebook link: https://www.facebook.com/balloonsbykibby