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The Hebrew word “avoda” jointly means work, worship, and service.


Avoda Holdings Inc. is a for-profit company that is wholly owned by Here Be Lions Ministries. The Hebrew word “avoda” jointly means work, worship, and service. The usages of this Hebrew word illustrate that God’s original design and desire is that our work and our worship would be a seamless way of living.

Avoda Holdings is a picture of an integrated faith. A business where work and worship come from the same root; the same foundation. Often we think of worship as something we do on Sunday and work as something we do on Monday. Avoda, on the other hand, suggests that our work can be a form of worship.

Avoda Holdings is a place where work, service and worship (Avoda) are experienced through the values of community, generosity, excellence, risk taking, restoration, innovation and transparency. Our central mission is to restore “community”. Each business that is established will be designed with this principle in mind. The services or products we provide will facilitate community as their first priority. We believe that depression, anxiety and suicide will be eradicated when people have a place to form deep, meaningful relationships and find friends that care to walk a journey with them.

Dustin Smith

Avoda Holdings CEO

Dustin Smith lives big! At 6’5″, he brings a “big man” personality into a room, yet he speaks with an uncanny kindness and loving spirit that catches some off-guard. He embodies generosity and leads by example. A third-generation Pastor, his family’s ministry pedigree was not lost on him. He loves God passionately and it is seen and heard in his songwriting, preaching, and healing ministry. He lives a life that seeks what makes God smile and it shows in his exuberant love for life and people. He is both individual and community-minded and will always make time for the “unofficial” ministry that goes unseen.

For more about Dustin, please see Here Be Lions, All About Worship, and Healing is Right

Aaron Sanders

Avoda Holdings COO

Aaron Sanders’ heart is disproportionate to his body. God made Aaron to be a lover of people and you will sense this after just a few minutes across the table from him. He has spent two decades in both the business world and pastoral ministry, but it’s his heart for people that specifically qualifies him to assist Dustin in directing the course of Avoda. Aaron is person first and project second. He is gifted with an insight that allows him to be a tremendous encouragement to all he meets and you will always leave him, having been inspired.

Niki Petersen

Executive Project Manager

Niki Petersen is a ShowRunner. She makes things happen in order and with order. She asks questions about things that have yet to have an answer, and she does so because she insists that people succeed. Niki is the person that you want on your team. She is thoughtful, contemplative, and compassionate. She loves deeply and is just fine with being outside of the spotlight. Your experience with Avoda will be better because Niki is part of the staff. Bring a situation to Niki and she will bring you a solution.