Friday, June 21, 2013

Please Pray For Us

Truth be told, I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook.  It definitely has its advantages, but many of us know the "dark side" to Facebook, as well.  HOWEVER today, I am so thankful for Facebook and the Internet, in general, because it's a great way for me to get this information out to you.  I am asking those of you who would be willing to please lift up my family and me
AND our small group we meet with every Sunday morning over the next week.  I often refer to them as my Faith Family, because over the past year, we all have embarked on an adventure we never would have imagined.  Which leads me to the purpose of this post.

Over the past year, our sweet Faith Family has committed to serving on our local mission field right here in Lincoln Parish every month.  We've been able to see the Lord do some mighty work in us and through us as we've partnered with various local ministries such as DART, Life Choices, Grace Place, Fishers of Men and others.  This month, we will be packing up a few of our belongings and heading to New Orleans to help with a mission that none of us could have ever imagined, dreamed up or even thought of.  Simply put, God has called us to this place for such a time as this.  God is the only explanation.  Period.

Next weekend, June 28 & 29, we will be partnering with ONE Ministry in New Orleans.  The folks involved in this ministry work diligently to help put an end to human trafficking right there where they are on the streets of New Orleans.  One of the things they have done there is establish relationships with some of the owners and employees of several "gentlemen's clubs" in their neighborhood.  They have actually gone into these clubs with the simple purpose of showing the love of Christ to the employees who perform there.  As a result, God has done a miracle and made a way for ONE Ministry to actually provide breakfast next weekend to one of the club's performers/employees.  This is where our group comes in.  We will be helping prepare and serve breakfast to the ladies and men who work every night in this particular club.  Our hope is that they will catch a glimpse of the love of Christ as we serve them, love them, and offer them gifts that will include a Bible. 

This is where we need your help.  My husband and I have been adamant about NOT wanting to give the enemy ANY kind of foothold in regards to this mission.  Obviously, Satan won't be happy about this, and I expect him to be up to his old tricks in trying to distract us and even convince us that we shouldn't go.  But I am approaching the throne of grace with confidence that comes from the Holy Spirit.  I have come before the Father asking Him to help us overcome any obstacles that come our way over the course of the next week.  Will you please join me in doing the same?

Please ask the Lord to protect us, our children, and our homes while we are away.  Ask Him to give us His eyes and give us the ability to recognize tactics from the enemy while granting us the power to send him straight back to the pit of Hell where he belongs.  Ask the Lord to equip us with whatever we are going to need to fulfill this mission, to be able to love these ladies (and men) in a way that goes beyond human comprehension, that those we serve will be overwhelmed by the Holy Spirit and will not be able to rest or relax until a decision has been made to surrender to AND follow Christ with their lives.  Ask the Lord to give us the words we need, the mannerisms necessary, and the courage to stare the devil straight in the face as we enter an area of New Orleans that is plagued by darkness and evil. 

If Christ is for us, then who can be against us?  No weapon formed against us shall prosper.  We are more than conquerors with the help of the Holy Spirit.  Will you claim that for us, please?  We need your prayers.  Desperately.

Please let me know either through commenting on this blog post or through Facebook if we can count on your prayers.  For those willing, will you pray us through that night?  We will be working through Friday night into the early hours of Saturday morning.  We will be serving breakfast at 4 am on Saturday.  Remember, this is NEXT week (June 28-29).

Thank you over and over.  We are giving God praise for granting us this opportunity and we believe He has allowed us to be apart of, what we hope, will be a miracle in the heavenly realm.  Preparing to see God show up and show out.  Won't your join us in believing the same?!  Glory to God and His Son Jesus!

"We who have run for our very lives to God have every reason to grab the promised hope with both hands and never let go.  It's an unbreakable spiritual lifeline, reaching past all appearances right to the very presence of God where Jesus, running on ahead of us, has taken up his permanent post as high priest for us..." -Hebrews 6:18-20 (MSG)

Believing and praying that these ladies (and men) will simply grab the Promised Hope Rope in Jesus' name!

Thank you for praying, friends.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

A Tribute To My Baby Daddy

Oh sure, I could have gone and spent 4 or 5 dollars on a sappy Father's Day card for my husband.  But it seemed more appropriate (and frankly, more fun) for me to compose a few thoughts of why I love this man so much, and how incredibly thankful I am to him for being my baby daddy.  This is dedicated to the one I love.

BWC, I sure do love you.  Oh yes, I most certainly do.  There are many things I love about you, but the thing I love the most is your ability to make me laugh like no other person on the planet.  And just for the public's pure enjoyment, I'd like to share three of my all time favorite moments of life with BWC...

#1  Once upon a time, in the days of old, before kids were even a consideration, and Saturday mornings were a golden opportunity to sleep until noon, BWC thought it'd be sweet to rise and shine, throw on his bath robe, and head to the Mickey D's to pick us up some breakfast.  As he pulled up to the window to pay and collect his order, he was greeted with one of the most endearing phrases ever known to man.  It was so sweet, that we still use it to this day when speaking to one another.  The absolutely precious McDonald's female employee noticed BWC's apparel and said, and I quote, "Well shuga, you in yo' robe."  And that is why BWC is not allowed to wear his robe out in public anymore.

#2  A very pregnant yours truly had (FINALLY) fallen asleep one night several years ago.  I was carrying our first-born child and had gotten to the stage of pregnancy where no position is ever comfortable... not to stand, not to sit, not to lie.  And just like that, a modern-day miracle occurred and I had actually fallen asleep in my big ol' fat pregnant state.  You can imagine my horror when a cough deeply-rooted into my chest made its way to the surface only to come out of my mouth at an alarming level of sound.  Poor ol' BWC had just dosed off and as this very loud and very obnoxious cough made its way out, BWC shot straight up out of bed, yelled loudly, and I quote, "WHERE IS THE BEAR."  We still laugh about it to this day.

#3  Before Jesus really got a hold of our lives, we had a very short run with some very bad decisions.  And although this stage of life is a bit foggy, I vaguely remember BWC and I taking a trip to Vegas.  Just our mere destination goes without explaining why the memories are if-ey.  I do remember us being in the lobby of our hotel waiting to meet some friends for dinner.  A few folks in our group had already made their way into the lobby and as we were small talking, I noticed a very attractive woman talking to BWC.  No big deal, right?  I mean...BWC is easy on the eyes, if you ask me.  So, I didn't give it much concern as they continued their conversation.  Shortly after their initial words, this woman (did I mention she was pretty) nodded her head and walked away.  And at exactly the same time, BWC's and my eyes met and he said to me across the lobby with great enthusiasm, and I quote, "I just got solicited for sex.  Yea baby, I still got it."  That's wonderful, honey.  No really...just wonderful.

Bloggey friends, I could totally keep going.  I mean, I've got stories like this for days, I really do.  But I just wanted to offer you all a small taste of what it's like to live with this incredible man.  I have always prayed for my husband as long as I can remember.  My mom explained to me at an early age that the Lord had already decided who my husband would be, and it would be very wise of me to pray for him as often as I could.  And y'all, I wish I knew how many prayers were offered up on behalf of BWC even way before I ever laid my eyes on him. 

It is true...he is an amazing husband and the best daddy a kid could ever hope for.  But truth be told, the thing that most attracts me to him...the thing that gets my motor running for this man every single time is...his deep and infectious love for Jesus.  He leads our home in a way I never would have imagined.  He inspires us all to love the Lord with our lives.  Not to just love Jesus with our words and our thoughts, but with our actions.  He leads by example...loving others with the love of Christ, devoting his own time and effort to leading others to Jesus through the ministry of his job and various hobbies.  Not only does BWC know Jesus personally, but he lives out the purposes of Jesus Christ every single day.  He's funny.  He's smart.  He's my man, but he's also my brother in Christ.  Seriously, what more could a girl want?

BWC, I love you.  Happy Father's Day.  You are, hands-down, my most favorite.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Lord, where are you?

How easy it is to get incredibly caught up into our own lives!  Even in just the everyday, those mundane tasks can quickly consume our time and before we know it, our lives start to resemble something similar to the movie Groundhog Day.  I wonder if anyone is like me and has found themselves in an unfamiliar spiritual place all of a sudden.  Alarmingly, I find myself asking...

Lord, where are you?

I know He's there, but lately it's been hard to feel Him, sense Him, experience Him.  I remember hearing a sermon once where the teacher believed there are strategic times in our lives where God pulls back.  He doesn't go away, mind you, but that sweetness that comes from His presence is missing.  This particular teacher believed God does this from time to time so that He can teach us something.  That seems to be how He works, isn't it?

I wonder how many of us simply go through our lives developing habits and ways of thinking that we don't even realize we've started, and all of a sudden, we find ourselves feeling dry, empty, lonely even.  And here's the kicker...nothing of significance has to even happen to put us in that low place. 

(Lord knows just a wave of hormones can put us women in a funk in no time flat.)

It just seems, especially for those of us who have a lot of time on our hands, it's quite easy to find ourselves in an unfamiliar place with the Lord with no explanation whatsoever.  You just wake up one day feeling "emotionally weak, physically exhausted and spiritually deflated." (Words straight out of my devotional this morning.)  Could it be that we have found ourselves in this place as a result of a life lived outside the standards and alignment set for us by God?  Perhaps we've heard His gentle whispers along the way, those heavenly nudges to be cautious, those divinely inspired reminders of dangerous water to speak.  And for whatever reason, we've chosen to ignore Him.  Perhaps, not even out of defiance, but just because...just because we don't have to do what He says.

If any of this is resonating, thank God, I am not alone.  In an effort to get ourselves back on steady ground, could we take a moment to simply encourage one another?  I want to pray for you, whomever finds herself reading this in this moment.  And would you pray for me?  One thing I know...our biggest spiritual weapon is prayer. Oh, how we take it for granted!  But it is at our disposal at all times and the Lord wants us to use it.  It is what leads to victory in our lives, and if we can remember to give God the glory in all situations, He will give us the victory.  Amen?

Father God,
Nothing reminds us more of how human we are when we find ourselves feeling down, deflated and empty.  Thank you for reminding us that we can not make it without you.  Help us to feel your presence today, and in the moments where we can't seem to find you, help us to be relentless in pursuing you anyway.  Give us peace in knowing that you are always there, you will never forsake us, and that every moment given to us in this life is an opportunity to grow closer to and more dependent on you.  I pray for whomever is reading this prayer right now at this very moment.  I pray that you would meet her needs, that you would reveal yourself to her, and that you would heal, restore, replenish and revive her heart, soul and mind.  When it's hard for us to track you, Lord, remind us that some of your biggest miracles happen in the pursuit, the trial, the waiting period.  Help us to know that our biggest victories come while we're along the journey.  Help us to love you with our lives.  Help us to lean not on our own understanding but to trust you at all times and in every way.  We love you, Jesus. 

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Illness, Scissors & Spiders, OH MY!

Sometimes, when I start taking myself way too seriously, I have to take a few moments to get it together, to debrief if you will.  You know?  In other words, to simply pause and say to myself...

Whoa Nelly!

Or to use my personal favorite phrase of choice...

Alright, stop!  Collaborate and listen! 

Because if I'm being real honest, my mind honestly feels like a hot mess mix of bad 90s hip hop.  What with all the "stop what you're doing cuz I'm about to ruin the image and the style that you're used to" swirling around in my head.  With that being said, I thought I'd let ya know what was going down at the family compound.

First and foremost, the baby was sick over the weekend.  She had a fever that turned into a cough.  And might I say that I read no such-a parenting book that would explain the dry heaving that comes after your child pukes down your shirt while you're holding her?  Oh no, there is no such thing that ever prepared me for such a time as this when baby girl gets downright mad because her cough is keeping her awake at night.  But hey!  At least she's cute, right?

Well let's see...there's that time LAST weekend where the oldest boy thought it ever so clever to dare his younger brother to cut his hair with actual scissors.  Isn't that precious?  No worries, though.  Leave it to the hubs to come up with quite the creative punishment.  I'll skip on sharing the details since we don't need none of ya calling the Po-Po on us over here.

And I'll leave you with one final piece of riveting testimony.  Last night, after a long day of cleaning and changing diapers and wiping snot and folding other people's drawers, I had finally settled in for the night.  As I was watching Friends and feeling the weight of my eye lids, something black was darting straight up the covers right toward my face, my mouth to be exact.  I yelled an expletive and threw the blanket back just in time.  I then proceeded to slap the thing with the T.V. remote in hopes of putting us both out of our misery.  I walked away with the victory with merely seconds to remain.  And that, my friends, is how I almost swallowed a spider before dozing off.

(Did you know the average human swallows about 4 to 10 spiders in a lifetime?  Of course, this depends ONLY on whether you sleep on your side, back or stomach.)

(In that case, I'll be sleeping standing up from now on, thank you very much.)

(Thanks, a lot, Google!)