We had the good fortune of connecting with Dori Phillips and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Dori, how do you think about risk?
I was raised simply and not really taught to take risks. When I was 24, a single mom with three children, I met my husband to be and he introduced me to a life with Jesus. I became committed in my relationship with God and took the risk of walking by faith, and not by sight. It wasn’t easy, as I had to acknowledge things about my character/behavior that, quite frankly, weren’t admirable. I began a journey with the Lord of laying down my will/plans and replacing it with his. After twelve years of marriage, we walked through an unthinkable tragedy. My husband, Adam, and our four youngest children were all killed in a car accident. I had to trust God for the future of my life and the lives of our four older children. I had to die to every hope and dream for our family and future, and trust God. It may seem like a great risk, but because I knew the Lord well at this point, my trust and hope was in him. I walked through a healing process and fought for my family’s future success. I took a great risk by starting a ministry and began to tell my story in churches and different types of events, i.e, women’s groups, conferences, etc. The first time I spoke to a crowd was four months after the accident, which happened on October 18, 2005. I had never even held a microphone and was quite terrified. But I knew God was giving me a purpose and hope for a future, so I pushed through the fear. I also knew I had something that could help others. Over the last fifteen years, I have continued to take risks by growing and establishing different avenues for the ministry, i.e, a widows and orphans fund, the Write to Heal Workshop, and taking my own conferences to churches and other venues. Another risk was authoring a book in February 2011 entitled, “A Love Greater Than Death,” however it proved to be one of the best decisions I could have made. I recently completed an accompanying study guide and am hoping to begin the publishing process soon. I will continue to take risks in this life, as the Lord leads.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I began working in the legal field at the age of 18. In the beginning it felt like I was learning a foreign language, however there were many mentors along the way. I initially worked at a company that supported lawyers and after three years was offered a job at a law firm as a receptionist. After three months I was being trained as a legal secretary. At the one year mark, I was offered a job at another law firm with a substantial salary increase and great benefits. I was able to continue growing in the field and became a paralegal. It was through the legal field, working with professional writers on a daily basis, that gave me the courage to write a book, even though I didn’t have a formal education. Although I highly value traditional education, I discovered there are many other ways to learn and grow.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I live in the Houston area and am in close proximity to Galveston, Texas. I have always loved the beach and the relaxed atmosphere of a coastal town. I would definitely take a friend there to experience the sea breeze, listen to the waves, and experience what I call my “happy place..” If kids are involved we would definitely go to the Rainforest Cafe. It’s a jungle experience with animals that look and sound real and then after dinner, you take a relaxing water raft ride through the safari. We take our grandkids every year. We would also go to the amusement park which is situated over the ocean. But mostly relaxing on the beach and taking time to breathe deep and think with nothing more than the sound of the waves and intermittent laughter from those enjoying their time. Galveston has some great restaurants, one of my favorites being Mario’s Italian on the Seawall. The food is excellent and they have homemade gelato. You can’t go wrong with a beach town.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
My husband Toby has loved, encouraged, championed, and supported me throughout this journey. We were married four years after the loss of my husband and four youngest children. I can’t imagine life without him.