If I could tell you only one thing about me, it would be that I love helping people along their life journeys in any way God enables me to, just as I have been helped by so many people in my own life.
Aside from that, I’m a wife, mother, daughter, sister, relative, and friend who struggles with the same things in life that most people do and on whom life’s proverbial rains fall like everyone else. But thanks to the Lord, I have a sure hope that helps me see the positive in any challenge or trial. I am also a professional musician, love to travel, and love outdoor activities like camping and canoeing.
How did your “green” journey start?
I’ve always been a pretty simple person, but my conscious journey into more natural living really began when I had my first child in September of 2004. From breastfeeding and making my own baby food to cloth diapering, my green journey had officially begun. My mommy instincts came hard-wired to tune into anything that could help build an overall healthier life for my family, whether physically, emotionally, financially, or spiritually.
In the spring of 2005, a friend pointed out the questionable ingredients in the brand name baby wash and lotion we were using, and why they were of concern. For the first time, I became aware of some of the more subtle dangers, like toxic synthetic chemicals, lurking in our everyday lifestyle choices. As my journey continued over the years, I began to learn more about the concepts of sustainability and creation care. In 2010, a book by Matthew Sleeth called Serve God, Save the Planet (among others) really cemented my commitment to continue making changes in the way my family lives to be more conscious of the choices we make daily and our impact on the world.
How did your entrepreneurial journey start?
Around the same time back in 2005, a friend also introduced me to a more natural (though not all-natural) line of personal care options for my family that also gave me the opportunity to build a home-based consulting business in the field of healthier personal care. This was an overall positive experience, but was always lacking “something” I couldn’t quite put my finger on at the time. Looking back now, I am thankful to have learned a great deal through that particular experience about what goes on in both the personal care industry and the home business industry – the good, the bad, and the ugly.
After five years of keeping myself generally up-to-date on the personal care market at large and not finding anything truly all-natural that would reliably stay fresh and work well, I was thrilled to discover, in June of 2010, a truly all-natural line of personal care options that offered everything my “earth mama” soul really wanted in such products: zero toxic chemicals, certified organic to food-grade standards, reliably shelf stable against dangerous microbes and rancidity, fully recyclable packaging, carbon-negative company operations, plus great results and the opportunity to continue on in and further develop my consulting business – thus allowing me to continue working from home around the needs of my young children who numbered 3 plus 1 on the way at that time (now 6, with #5 having joined us in June 2013 and #6 in November 2016).
Will you just pitch your favorite brand, or will you truly help?
I will never push my particular choices or perspectives on anyone – whether in matters of product choice, business choice, or faith perspectives. I love consulting with people in the health product and home business realms to help them find what they want – which is not always what I’ve chosen for myself. In fact, beyond their quality, value, and integrity, one of the reasons I became a customer of the brand for whom I now do rep work was because they were so NOT pushy – they truly sought to educate me on the broader principles. I so appreciated that and it really is a big part of who I am, too. I love teaching people about the bigger picture, broader concepts and information. At the same time, I am passionate about truth and seek to always stand up for truth in compassionate and respectful ways – for example, if someone tells me the product they are selling is ‘natural’ or ‘organic’ and yet it has a bunch of synthetic chemicals in it, I will gently call them on it and ask if they want to learn more about the ingredients.
As a result of the research that prompted, accompanied, and followed my shift in focus from semi-natural to certified organic (truly all-natural) products in my consulting business, I began to more fully realize two things: 1- just how big an impact something as seemingly insignificant as personal care choices really can have on our health and the health of the planet, and 2- just how interconnected all the aspects of a greener lifestyle really are.
Along the way, I have also learned about many facets of business – what it is at its core (making people’s lives better), the fundamental purpose of business (a way for God to meet your needs and bless others in need through you), how it should be conducted (ethically, professionally, and with a servant’s heart), how to evaluate business options (weighing out the various pros and cons), and the specific benefits and challenges of home businesses. In addition to faith, health, and environmental topics, I love to dialogue with people about business, exploring the connections between work choices and sustainable living, and helping people who want to get started on an entrepreneurial journey to find the options that best fit them and their unique interests or passions.
What does “KV” stand for?
It’s really the core foundation of my passion to help restore a more natural and sustainable way of living in my own family and in the world. As my consulting business continues to grow beyond the people who knew me at the beginning of my entrepreneurial journey, I’m often asked, “What does KV stand for? What does it mean?” So, here’s the scoop on KV…
KV stands for Kingdom Vision. When I decided on this as the name for my business, I was not interested in branding *me* so that people would remember me and think highly of me. I was interested in cementing the bigger purpose into my heart and mind so that I would not be led astray from it as this business began to really grow. To me, Kingdom Vision is about being part of God’s restorative work in the world. There are SO many things broken and dysfunctional in the world today, but He is working to make all things new. To right all the wrongs. To lovingly wipe away every tear and heal all the hurts. To bring all of life on earth back to the balanced, sustainable harmony it was originally intended to enjoy. This will not be completely fulfilled until He brings about the new heaven and new earth, yet we can experience this abundant life even now as we submit to Him and His Truth for our lives in the here and now. So many of the unsustainable systems we depend on for our daily lives have deep mindsets fueling them – individual and collective mindsets to which we are often blind and which threaten to completely undermine all of life. I can’t begin to explain it all here, and I am quite sure I only understand a tiny fraction of it myself, but above all else, I believe God is actively fixing the mess. He invites us to take part in making the world not just a ‘better’ place, but the best possible place – to live out His ‘Kingdom’ as He created it all to work. This is not a passive hope in a heavenly future to long for while the world crumbles (though it is and will continue to do so until its ending and remaking), but rather an active hope to engage with and participate in daily as part of God’s restorative and creative process through His call on our lives into humble stewardship. We’re not ‘there’ yet, and thus it is still a ‘Vision’ for the future.
“For the vision is yet for the appointed time; it hastens toward the goal and it will not fail. Though it tarries, wait for it, for it will certainly come, it will not delay.” Habakkuk 2:3
“Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” Jeremiah 17:7-8
Lacey Swartz is a wife and mother of six who longs to see sustainable life restored in all the world. She provides natural health and sustainable living resources via her inbox magazine to save her readers hours of internet research time, and answers common questions to spare her clients the waste and frustration of a trial and error approach to purchasing natural products in an age of greenwashing.
Equally passionate about economic sustainability, Lacey helps conscious consumers find smart referral programs that can help reduce or eliminate household budget lines; and as a social entrepreneur living in an era of massive job loss and equally massive opportunity, she teaches aspiring home business entrepreneurs to wisely evaluate their options for the greatest potential long-term impact and success. On her blog, she shares her journey as a mission-minded mamapreneur focused on social change through ethical and transparent business, and she loves collaborating with and supporting like-minded social entrepreneurs in the global work of restoring sustainable living in all its various dimensions.
Having worked in the natural products and home business fields since 2005, Lacey is highly skilled at helping people understand both of these topics more fully in order to draw their own informed conclusions, without ever pushing her own opinions or choices on anyone. Although you’ll most often find her working from home in her sweats, she is fully committed to running a consulting business of the utmost professionalism and especially thankful to be able to stay home with her young family while still putting her inner teacher and MA in Education to good use in the world.