Tuesday, March 29, 2011

So proud

Almost 2 years ago I met a girl at the pool in a hotel while at a convention. This has happened before. And I felt a connection to her. Talked to her, we both blog and have kept up with each other over the last 2 years...

She's the one on the far left.

She follows me here on "my world" and watched me on my weight loss journey in the fall. She felt God leading her in the same direction so we started holding each other accountable through msgs, phone calls, fb, myfitnesspal.com etc.

Today she wrote me that she placed 6th in the weightloss contest she entered! meaning she won some "plunder"

She hasn't placed at all the whole time but God blessed her with a 5 lb weight loss this last week! She has lost 25lbs altogether and we will continue to stay accountable even though the contest is over.

Angela has been so adamant and faithful to repent and seek the Lord, I am so incredibly proud and happy for her- may many be inspired....

Not Just Another Mission Trip

Since I've been blogging ( 3 years this month) I have been on 5 mission trips. Most I've documented....

California, SW 3 city tour,  Nepal, Alabama

I wasn't technically supposed to go on this one. It was a guys trip so I planned a me and my mom and kids trip at the same time. That fell through and Cody's "guys" weren't too many so he wanted us to come. So we came. And it's been not just a mission trip...

It's been a new friends trip.....

Tanner Britt, who has won Charis' heart! She sings songs about him, what could be more flattering?

Lisa Fruit, usao college student, aka Jugy

wonderfully fun young lady called to missions and super with kids!

And Chris, another usao student (far right)

he's great at carrying Charis up hills (even with foot issues)

Tanner Jo, a new believer who I just love...he's awesome, he makes me laugh.

Valley Life's first get together....Cady and Charis lead games and hold sweet babies...

It's been a trip of seeing how big God is...

It's so not about us, our plans, our dreams. Only God can do this, pull resources, call people, provide people, hearts and ultimately save souls!

If I have learned anything I've learned God is big and can do big things, impossible things.

A trip of Tote bags filled with cool things....

Mr. Incredible and his out of date IPad, lol.....

speaking of Mr. Incredible look what else he can do...

Ms. Bailey and her wonderful recorder performances while waiting on the vans to pick us up after distributing the door flyers!

water, what a wonderful thing....this was our hike up on a hill to pray for the valley and valley life church

A trip of great food and wonderful fellowship (mostly around the table :)

lunch break on the door flyer hanging days, Cady said it was the best lunch she' ever had!

Valley LIfe's first "get together" was fun and very encouraging! 

The church will meet in a promenade area so we spent some time there, shopping and talking. 
Lisa and I did a starbucks run one night with my girls and Charis started playing with 2 twin girls her age. They had fun picking every single flower off the potted plants while we got to know their mom and grandma (from Iraq) .Muslims who were excited to know about ValleyLife - hoping we'll see them again someday! I love starbucks table talks!

While Brooke fed us very well we did go out twice, once to PF Changs- Kung Pow Chicken (non breaded) only way to go! 

We also had a blast at Pappaduex's - WONDERFUL food, most of our crowd had never been, the food was great but the stories and laughs were even better. Everything's better around a table, I am convinced. 

And lastly the oil and vinegar store! Olive Creations. There are so many good things in this world, only a preview of what is to come in the new heavens and earth- can't even imagine the wine at the Marriage SUpper of the Lamb (sorry but my Revelations study just makes it into every conversation) 

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The walk you shouldn't have to take

Awaken to a new day beside the love of my life.  Whispered prayers of gratitude.

Breakfast and lunches made, see you later and instructions, the drop off of school kids...

I Had a Heavy heart for this day held a funeral. 

A goodbye. 

The living mourning the dead. 

A realm beyond our reach. 

A walk no mother should ever have to take. 

Psalm 34:18
The LORD is close to the brokenhearted

Exercise. Movement. Praise. Hands lifted in hopes of His kingdom come. Shower & clothes...

What do you wear to bury a baby? 

There are colors you don't wear and in the end black was all that seemed appropriate. 

A short, quiet drive alone to a new cemetery. Monuments of grey with dashes of bright colors adorn this resting ground. 

Sorrow & resign. 

Hands crossed shielding the cool breeze, a multitude of cars and people. Sounds of a young toddler crying. A lone walk to the place. 

A gathering of friends and family. Forced smiles and tears. Teachers, coaches, the young, the old...the other mothers....those who knew this degree of loss, this walk a mother shouldn't have to take.

Words Spoken from the Bible. Prayer....

New green weeds peeking out beneath brown grass- the dead and the emerging...a cycle, hope that that which dies will resurrect in time. Spring is coming. Resurrection is coming. 

And that is why it hurts so bad. This walk on earth's soil. We were meant for eternity. It has been placed in our hearts. That's why funerals are avoid and death is not mentioned. Why our tears flow and the hurt runs so deep. It wasn't supposed to be this way. 

Genesis 2:16
And the LORD God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”

But they believed the liar's lie. Death came. And as death came, Jesus' fate was sealed, a way must be made for life....

Romans 6:23
 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Tears rolling down my face I look to my neighbors....we cheer on our Comets, we fight the fires, we help rebuild, we wave when we pass....what a comfort to know you are not alone. 

Revelation 14:13 
Then I heard a voice from heaven say, “Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.”

How can such sorrow know blessing? How can such pain ever heal? How can one ever quit crying? Who knows the plan? 

Isaiah 65:20 

No longer will babies die when only a few days old. 

"Come ye sinners, weak and wounded...In the arms of our dear savior, oh there are 10,000 charms...."

Charms? Remembrances....Every tear, every pain, every hurt...

Isaiah 53:3
He was despised and rejected by mankind,
   a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.
Like one from whom people hide their faces
   he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.

 4 Surely he took up our pain
   and bore our suffering

In him there is life, in him there is healing. IN HIM.

Luke 11:35-36

Jesus wept. Then the Jews said, “See how he loved him!”

I have not walked this bitter road. But the Holy Spirit within me has and perhaps that is why I feel it so deep. He mourned because he loved. I cry because I love. 

"Tis better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all" 
- Alfred Tennyson 

Sunday, March 6, 2011


There are 6 kids in my home at the moment and I am fixing them cookie monsters. It's glorious chaos. They are here and alive and talkative and moving in 6 different directions but I love children and I love to feed them even more.

I put my hand in my pocket and feel a soft tissue. And I am reminded of the visit I had to make an hour earlier. Someone's world has been turned upside down and I wanted to go and let her know she is not alone.

That this news came on Becky's 35th birthday can't be coincidental.

I sat with a mourning mother for an hour or so. Too long? Not long enough? Who knows. When your baby has been ripped from your hands there are no words, no end to the depth of grief you feel and no foreseeable end to the pain.

She held his blanket, his onesies and burp rags. The tears falling amongst occasional smiles over a grandpa playing playdo with his granddaughters feet away.

Silence. Pictures. Hushed questions. No answers. None. No words. The spin going so fast you want to throw up. You beg off but it won't stop. Wave upon wave of grief.

In circumstances I defer to experience. 3 years before I sat relinquishing all hope of a miracle for Becky's baby to be healed. We gave her body to the Lord in a sweet offering. We know her spirit is alive and well waiting on us till we're reunited. All because of the blood of Jesus Christ and our faith in him.

4 babies have gone ahead this year. 4. Odd for this day in age. In 15 years of ministry we haven't buried more than 5 babies - this year 4!

It's time to tell a story. Our story. The details of friendship, faith, providence, petitions and pain. And the hope that while things are never the same after your world begins to spin out of control we are given promises. And we can lean on those when the waves of sorrow come rolling in.

to be continued......

Friday, March 4, 2011

Update on the Orphans

I have 3 left!

God is amazing.

Today started with an email about 2 of the girls in the hospital. I worried. Another bill for a stressed out bi-vocational pastor seeking to care for 8 extra children.

I posted the prayer request on facebook along with pictures and things started to happen. Most of the sponsors went to Nepal or are related to someone who did but today I had 2 new ones. 2 families with young children wanting to impact a child- to God be the glory it's so exciting to know soon they are going to have on going support. In Bishwa's emails I can tell they are beginning to feel some relief from a hard year.