In recent years, I’ve taken couple quasi Nazarite vows: no shaving, hair cutting, and alcohol. Minhee and the kids aren’t big fans of my long and messy hair. I recently had it in a ponytail when I picked up my kids at school and my oldest exclaimed:
Don’t wear that ponytail at my school!
I grounded her for 6 months. Anyways, my quasi Nazarite vows take place when I’m praying or working on something pretty important. I admit it’s a little warped but it’s a reminder that I need God’s grace, mercy, and intervention.
For example, I did it when I was waiting for all the permits and construction for the building and opening of Q Cafe in 2002 and for the long process of the “merger” with Interbay and the miracle of their gift to Quest.
And now, I’ve been undergoing my current quasi Nazarite vow as I’ve been praying and working towards our 501(c)(3) issuance with the Internal Revenue Services. I knew I needed some intervention and God’s favor when I received this email from my lawyer who’s been doing non-profit work for some time:
On the IRS…xxxxxx still didn’t call, I left him another message. Went through the customer service again and they are put in a request to have your user fee “extended” for thirty days and to have the original letter asking for additional information re-sent to you and me. It isn’t clear yet whether the request for the user fee extension will be granted, it will be disappointing if you have to re-pay the $750. Again, I’m confident we’ll get there, but this has been an insanely frustrating process for me, and I can’t imagine what it is like for you to get held up like this. The lady I spoke with was nice, but the bureaucracy she’s in the middle of is like nothing I’ve ever seen. All over a lost piece of mail and an agent who won’t return calls.
Thankfully, we finally some good news: we received an extension and now know what additional info the IRS wants – so we can keep the ball moving forward. Hopefully, we’ll receive our official issuance this upcoming summer. So, it’s possible that we’ll be rolling out our logo, name, vision, and website in the coming months. It’s a difficult economic climate so we’ll need to be in continual prayer and discernment.
But I’m thinking I may need to finally give in to my wife’s request to cut the hair. I have heard the funniest comments about my hair or look. I have been told I look like:
- Joel Osteen [when my hair is combed w/ my mullet]
- Lord Farquuad from Shrek [this is m wife calling me this!]
- Asian version of Keith Green
Some advice for those who are looking to start a non-profit organization: Don’t cut corners.
I received help from friends who were lawyers but none of them specialized in non-profit and it was unfair to them – and also set us back. Spending couple thousand dollars might be one of your best investment in order for your non-profit and vision to get off to a good start.