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Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Merry Christmas 2013

All I can say is... Merry Christmas! I am remembering the birth of Jesus, I am remember what he did here on this earth, I am remembering how he died for me and you (before we even knew him), and I am remembering who I was and how I have been forgiven and given a new life. Feeling overly blessed. (undeserved... but feeling the grace).
 
 

Friday, December 20, 2013

Freedom?

This morning Margie called me to tell me of a situation I needed to pray over. This young husband and wife want to become Christian. They have been considering it for a while and finally have started to attend a Bhutanese church, but they have been getting resistance from her family. The wife was with the Christians practicing a Nepali dance for some up coming event and the father of the lady called and told the Pastor if he did not send his daughter home he would call the police and say he kidnapped her. They have been experiencing persecution here in a America... simply because they want to believe and follow Yahew. My heart is heavy!

My true feelings on all of the persecution is I AM SICK OF IT!

The Hindu father, I believe he is scared... maybe scared of the unknown. Scared to lose his daughter and not knowing anything about what her heart is longing for. The father hasn't had the opportunity to feel what his daughter is feeling. So, I pray for her and her family. I pray for the Lord to penetrate the Father's heart with the two-edged sword. And I pray for this family to press on and to seek what they feel so strongly... and that Yahweh will reveal himself to them.

I am done hearing about the whole Duck Dynasty issue as well. You wanna know why? Because this is going to happen. As the days become closer to the time of Christ's return, we will be persecuted! Yes, even us American's, who think we are to worthy to be questioned or persecuted over our freedom of speech and our beliefs. The day is going to come where we too will have to fight and stand up for our Savior and what he has done for us. We as believers here in the U.S. have lost what it really means to be a Christian. It doesn't mean go to church when you feel like it, or only go when there is a good Pastor preaching... We have lost the desire to get on our knees and cry out in a loud moan, sobbing, and seeking our Creator. We have lost it! It is not the end of the world that Duck Dynasty has lost their air time. What we need to focus our time and effort on is seeking our Lord, because the time is getting near where we to will be fighting for what we want to say and how we want to worship. Do I agree with what Phil said? Yes, but that is not the point... the point is now to see and feel the groaning and contractions of the world as it becomes closer to when Christ will return.

This blog post may seem to be going all over the place (and maybe it is)... But, here is a sweet Hindu family in America seeing, hearing, and believing in the Messiah and they are being restricted. Then here we are as Americans turning our backs against the Truth that has been here since the beginning of time... its right at our finger tips and we give up. We have little faith, because we can't see it, we can't feel it... so it must not be real. I think my heart aches more for Americans than for my Hindu friend seeking after the Lord.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Over Flowing with Blessings

Today was exactly what I needed... I got to spend time with my Bhutanese friends. Not that they are different from my other friends... well... maybe they are. I don't sit with my friends like I sit and visit with them... nothing has to be said... nothing is expected... just to sit and enjoy each others company. We sat for about 2 hours in the ministries apartment just hanging out... I sat there listening and talking to them, having conversations in their beautiful Nepali language. I sat there watching them act just like you and me... laughing at each other. My heart is full when I sit and visit amongst my friends.

Another wonderful thing today was I got to spend time with Margie. Margie is full of wisdom. She is a missionary, evangelist and also the founder of Loaves & Fishes that serves the Bhutanese Refugees here in Houston. I shared my heart to her, the visions I have been having, and the prayers I am needing. Oh, what a beautiful woman of God she is... I try to soak up as much as I possibly can from her everytime we are together. You never know how much time we are given on this earth and how soon we may be taken away... I love this sweet lady and I pray one day when I grow up I will be just like her in my walk and faith in the Lord.

Then my day ended with my dear sister. I wasn't planning on visiting long with her, but then as I was leaving she said she had made some noodles for me that were not spicy. This is huge because I don't really care for spicy food and she made a dish for me that she knew I would like. My heart was full. So I stayed longer and ate this delicious meal and the great thing is she sat and ate with me. Usually I am the only one eating, so I took this time as a very special moment between the two of us. There was no husband around and the baby was sleeping. We had a quiet and good conversation. What a blessing to my soul this time was, because my sweet sister will be leaving Houston in a few months and I may never see her again. It makes me sad that her family is leaving, but these moments together... just like today I will treasure forever.

This January will be my 2 year anniversary serving the Bhutanese Refugees of Houston. I have learned so much about the people I love so dearly... I have learned how powerful love and relationships can be in the way to evangelize. I have made friendships I never thought in a million years and just because some of them may not worship Yahweh... I have faith and trust the time, love, and relationship between us will not be empty, but the Lord has a great plan for them. I pray that they will come to know Yahweh as their personal Lord and Savior, because I know with everything in me no one is never to far gone and the Lord is bigger than we could imagine.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Quiet in the Chaos

It is late so my update might be all over the place, so please forgive me now. My feelings and thoughts are all over the place. I can't seem to concentrate on more than 1 or 2 things a day... maybe I am supposed to take one day at a time. Maybe it is because Christmas is so close and I haven't gotten everything done. LOL! Maybe it is my emotions on returning to India.

But, I also feel in a way I am being protected. Protected by a shield. The evil one, I know wants to attack, but I feel as if I have a force field around me. Monday I was focused on my home, Tuesday was a day full of preparing for India, Wednesday was full of preparation for Christmas, Thursday will be centered on the Bhutanese and finishing up Christmas prep, and Friday will be surrounded by my children as we celebrate this time of year at their school and entering into a break.

I know this is a time satan likes to squeeze his way into rattle anyone and everyone on a mission for God's kingdom, but I know I am being prayed for because I have felt protected.

Truthfully, it is one day at a time and no more right now and it feels good. I feel an over flowing of prayers and blessings upon me and my family. There are no words.

Monday, December 9, 2013

God's Kolkata 2013

If you know me or ever read my blog... then you know I have a heart for the nations. I especially have a unexplainable love for the Indian culture. The only thing I can say is it is a God thing. Two years ago I was sent to Kolkata, India by God to shape and mold me. Most of the time these mission trips are 95% to change you and 5% for who you are serving. So 2 years ago, that is what happened... God gave me this deep loving desire for Indians. I have since been involved with a ministry here in Houston that serves and loves on the Bhutanese Refugees. They have some Indian traits but also have a little Chinese traits as well. Hard to explain... Same, same but different. The last year in October God sent me to Bangladesh. Again, fell even more in love with my fellow Indian (Bengali) friends. I had a lot of growing happen from this trip as well.

This year has been quiet. I will be honest... I have become very comfortable with our way of life. Nothing really deep going on... just nice and calm. Well let me just tell you... my nice calmness has been rattled. Wednesday of last week I was helping in a WAM (worship arts ministry) class at church and I was chatting with some friends about coming to a India mission trip meeting... they thought maybe I could help describe a little more about applying the henna (I don't know). I made the comment on how I would love to go and my friend Kay, who leads the India trips, said well we still have space. I was thinkin' "WHAT! You have got to be crazy!" I told her I did not have $2000. She then said... Nothing is to big for God. $2000 to God is nothing... just room and board. She said just pray about it. I left thinking "WHAT!" but I kept it to myself. Thursday I woke up with it on my mind... the next few days I sought my God earnestly, he led me to Scripture to encourage me, I wept asking him not to give up on me and not to break my heart, I wept for I was scared of hearing "NO", I wept because I so desperately wanted to go, I wept because I knew he was breaking me and molding me, and I wept because I knew he held each tear in his hand and treasured them, I prayed constantly, he gave me visions that I did not realize were visions, and he cared for me as I gave him my heart and shared verbally to him. He told me to go by faith and take the money I had and put it down as a down payment of some sort. I put it off, but decided to do it Sunday. Sunday evening I was invited to go to a dinner with the India team. It was so fun because I go to hear the new-bees talk and ask about all the things they needed... it made me remember my first time over seas and how overwhelming that can be. WHAT DO I BRING!!! It was so good and I got a confirmation I was suppose to go!

Monday (today) rolled around and it was time to take my money in (my $610)! I walked in and Kay said something like Did you have any money dropped off at your door step? I said well kind of... I had a friend offer to pay for my trip as a gift from God. This friend and I actually talked Sunday evening and she told me God told her she was suppose to give me this money to send me to Kolkata. WHAT! Kay was shocked... I was shocked! It took me a good long time to wrap my mind around it all, because I have always had God speak to me and not speak through other people to tell me. I cried with excitement for this opportunity to return to the place that still holds a piece of my heart. I cried with excitement to see my brothers and sisters I have been longing to reunite with for 2 years.

Everything was set. Childcare for my children were all set and our lovely long-time friend is going to care for them after school and another childhood friend is going to care for the girls while Bob runs his marathon. I mean it has all been falling into place as if God himself were touching everything. (which I have no doubt he is) To top all of this off... I get a call from Kingsland (our church) and its Kay. (I was a little worried at first) She said you won't believe this. I just got an email from another individual who wants to pay for your trip. WHAT! Is that not conformation that I am suppose to go?!? I was in tears... who am I to even be privileged enough to be chosen for such a task. Don't get me wrong God has always provided but never on such a time restraint as this. Today was the last day to get tickets... to be part of this trip... TODAY! Who am I that I have been chosen?

I leave this post in awe! I have no words, but all Glory to God! Today he lead me to Psalm 86 and what peace it brings:

"Bend down, O Lord, and hear my prayer;
    answer me, for I need your help.
Protect me, for I am devoted to you.
    Save me, for I serve you and trust you.
    You are my God.

Be merciful to me, O Lord,
    for I am calling on you constantly.

Give me happiness, O Lord,
    for I give myself to you.
O Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive,
    so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help.
Listen closely to my prayer, O Lord;
    hear my urgent cry.
I will call to you whenever I’m in trouble,
    and you will answer me.

No pagan god is like you, O Lord.
    None can do what you do!
All the nations you made
    will come and bow before you, Lord;
    they will praise your holy name.

For you are great and perform wonderful deeds.
    You alone are God.

Teach me your ways, O Lord,
    that I may live according to your truth!
Grant me purity of heart,
    so that I may honor you.
With all my heart I will praise you, O Lord my God.
    I will give glory to your name forever,
for your love for me is very great.
    You have rescued me from the depths of death.
O God, insolent people rise up against me;
    a violent gang is trying to kill me.
    You mean nothing to them.
But you, O Lord,
    are a God of compassion and mercy,
slow to get angry
    and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness.
Look down and have mercy on me.
    Give your strength to your servant;
    save me, the son of your servant.
Send me a sign of your favor.
    Then those who hate me will be put to shame,
    for you, O Lord, help and comfort me."

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Running the Race called Life

This morning while I was stretching I asked the Lord what he wanted me to read from the Bible (lately my mind has been everywhere and I have not heard)... He instantly told me James. I said "Okay. Where would you like me to begin?" I was told the first chapter. Okie Dokie then. And I read the title above the first section and it said Faith and Endurance. WOW, Lord! He wasn't joking when he told me to start in James 1.

I have been having a hard time making time for him, and how to balance work and my faith. When I do share my faith with my business it usually doesn't sound right. In my heart it sounds perfectly fine, but other people that hear it or read it don't agree with how I feel and it bothers them. I do believe that I am to do Advocare now as my business. It is going to free us from a lot of strongholds that are gripping my family pretty tight right now. I do believe he lays people on my heart, who I am to share this gift with or when he leads people to me. I see it as a gift. I was in a lot of pain when I was severely obese. I had a lot of emotion pain in my heart and the Lord worked it out and healed me from a lot of my pain while I/he transformed my body. I truly feel like a new person. He had a lot of healing to do inside of me during this last year and now I believe he is using me to share my story on my physical transformation and to let people know they are not stuck forever in this body... there is freedom from the chain of obesity.

I know there are a whole lot of men and women out there, who are uncomfortable and who are being told by the enemy... "You can never change." "You aren't worth it." "It is to hard and you will give up." I know people are hearing this because I heard it... but it is possible! People are doing it everyday and Advocare is a healthy and energizing way to do it. Now, don't get me wrong... there is no such thing as a magic pill. You have to work at it, but Advocare gives you the tools to be successful and feel amazing at the same time.

Back to James 1... God supplies me everyday for what I need and I ask him to give me what I need for every new day and today he gave me a pep talk about Endurance. If I keep my eyes on him and put down the worldly things that tend to catch my eye... He will be all I need. He fuels my Endurance! Just like everyone else I get distracted by the fast pace of this life, but this life I am running is not my own but it is His and he is all I need to be successful in what He has laid out before my feet.

And this is what I leave you with... "But don’t just listen to God’s word. You must do what it says. Otherwise, you are only fooling yourselves. For if you listen to the word and don’t obey, it is like glancing at your face in a mirror. You see yourself, walk away, and forget what you look like. But if you look carefully into the perfect law that sets you free, and if you do what it says and don’t forget what you heard, then God will bless you for doing it." -James 1:22-25

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Where is HOPE?

Hope. This word has been on my mind for a while. Why do we run from it? Why do we think it isn't real? It seems like to me that HOPELESS is used more than HOPE. Do we think we are completely hopeless that there is nothing for us to hope in? I mean all the time we put other things in front of what HOPE could do for you. Does this make sense? Let me break this down...

What do you put your HOPE in? If you had a life threatening illness in your body, where would you go to find HOPE and peace? I mean some people put there hope in the earth and they think the earth can heal you. The earth is a big floating mass with living things on it. Some people put their hope in rocks, plants, the sun, etc. What do those do for you? Rocks can be pretty... but that only lasts for a little while. Plants can be nice and smell nice, but eventually they die or I lose interest. The sun is awesome because it warms me and gives me vitamins I need, but I complain about it and lose interest. But, I am attracted to the light... more than any of the other objects I mentioned because I was created by God, who is light. Now this is not just any old light... it isn't part of any other religion... this light is not a god or rolled up in any of the things that some people worship. No... No... No... this is a light that only a few understand. Many people are very confused about this light, but this light was God breathed and was created to attract us because He is Light. This light is in me. When you truly believe the Truth (and when I mean Truth... I mean Scripture). My HOPE is in this bright Light... If I had a life threatening disease in my body He would be who I would go to and put my HOPE in. No rock or plant or sun could heal me, but my Light who is the one true God could! To many times we make things to difficult for ourselves... we let other things take the place of really what can take care of us and we will put our hope in the earthly things that can do nothing except give us a temporary satisfaction.

People lose HOPE in dreaming. I think this happens because we go out into the big world, get a job, and we get settled in comfortable living a comfortable mediocre life. We get married and have kids and are dreams are completely sucked out of us by then. Am I right? Nothing is more true than kids getingt more expensive as they get older. You just think diapers are expensive... then when they get older they want to ride horses, dance, and be in every activity known by man. What is your answer when your kids ask to be part of all these activities... maybe just one of these activities?? Is it NO? Aren't you sick to death of saying no? I have gotten so sick of saying no and hearing myself say no... it makes me want to vomit! When do we decide to change? Does this mean get a 2nd or 3rd job... NO! When is enough... ENOUGH? I have had enough and I am taking LIFE into my own hands... and I have found HOPE again. My dreams are being dreamed again. Don't get the first HOPE I talked about confused with what I am talking about now. But, this HOPE is to have a second chance on everything you ever dreamed about long ago.

But, then there is the question... Are ready to work for this HOPE? To push yourself to a new limit? To say who cares what anyone else thinks because I am fighting for my FAMILY and to DREAM! I will tell you that HOPE of having the freedom of dreaming is in one company that has been around for 20 years... Advocare. Don't shut me out! I am not kidding... my financial freedom, of being able to say YES is happening through Advocare.

But usually as soon as you mention a direct sales company people turn up their nose and turn away not even giving it a chance. Same thing happens to eternal HOPE... people can't believe there is One God, who has done all that the Truth tells us has happened. They turn their noses up and walk away and put their HOPE in things that they can wrap their minds around. Being able to wrap your mind around something seems easier, but in the end it won't.

Working 2 to 3 jobs may sounds more logical (to you not to me)... but life can be A LOT easier. You just have to have HOPE.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Thanksgiving 2013

This Thanksgiving has been a little different. We actually had family come here to Katy for Thanksgiving... which means I had to cook for 9 people. At first I was kind of freaked out because I offered not thinking anyone was going to take me up on my offer on having Thanksgiving here... BUT they did! AHHHH!!! But, Mom (my grandmother) made half of the meal. Bob smoked the turkey and I made the ham, mash potatoes, green bean casserole, and bought the rolls. It really wasn't that difficult and it was a huge blessing to have everyone here. My Uncle Pat came here from Colorado and him coming really surprised me and it was so awesome that he came! Both Hailee and Heidi love him so much and they don't get to see or play with him enough. Plus our good friends came over to celebrate with us. It was truly such a blissful day full of laughter, good conversation, and so much food!

I am so blessed! There are no words to describe this fullness I have in my heart.

I had planned to write so much more, but there is nothing coming to me... I feel complete! And I believe it all comes from my trust and faith in Jesus.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Ladies Alive 2013

Since I have become part of Advocare I have realized I have crushed my dreams that I use to have... they are crushed so badly that is hard to remember what they were. Yes, my dreams have changed since getting married and having kids, but I use to know what I wanted... now all I think about is how we are all going to survive the next day. I have been is survival mode for a long time... and I know many have done this and everyone's survival modes look different, but that is where I have been.

Saturday, was a big event with Advocare called Ladies Alive. As we crush our dreams we tend to crush ourselves and forget who we are... we let survival mode kick in and we lose ourselves. We let doubt and fear cripple us. Yesterday, I realized I am worth it and my dreams are worth it and my family is worth it! I am not going to let satan cripple me and put words in my head to make me feel like I am worthless. I am fighting for my family and teaching my kids to dream (not that they need help with that)... but teach them when they grow up they don't have to squash their dreams, but that life is an adventure. My life is an adventure and it is going to be adventurous!

So, my goal is to help other families cast vision... to dream again. If you are my friend, you will hear from me. If you have squashed your dreams to nothing... find me! I will be searching for those people who are ready to come out of the survival suit and live on the edge... who are ready to take that leap to the unknown. The unknown can be scary... but the unknown also can hold some AMAZING ADVENTURES!

Here are my dreams at this moment...
1. Pay off credit card debt by Jan. 1
2. Pay cash for a Disney trip in August 2014
3. Pay cash for New Delhi mission trip in September 2014
4. Iron Man Triathlon (Bob's dream)

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Hailee's 9th Birthday

It is so fun to celebrate birthdays, but there is something extra special to celebrate your child's birthdays. Today Hailee is 9 years old! Her last year in single digits... then for the rest of her life she will be in the double digits. WOW! This year... has been big! I have seen my oldest child become more mature and more responsible... it is crazy how this happens. Hailee's personality has matured... she is growing up seeing things clearer and seeing things that are important. Don't get me wrong she is still a 9 year old, who gets upset when things don't go her way, she is "Queen of Cheating" at games and a sore loser, she loves stuff and loves to hoard, and the list could go on...

What I am talking about is she sees people when they are in need or having a hard time and she will make the decision to help them. I have heard stories from her teachers and friends of mine of Hailee being selfless and wanting to help. Her teacher was just telling me the other day the kids in her class look up to her as a leader... completely different child than she was a year ago.

Hailee helps me around the house and helps me with Heidi. I am watching my first born blossom right before my eyes. There is a sense of trust and respect I am feeling for this child as she grows. I believe her eyes are opening to more than what this world can offer us, but she is seeing there are things that we as believers in Jesus do because we are called to help those in need. You may be thinking... "What does this have to do with God? Maybe she is just sweet natured." I would tell you yes, she is sweet natured, but we as a family don't just go about this life watching the people who need help... we act. She has seen me long enough going and doing what God has told me to do... and when she would ask why we are doing a certain thing... I would tell her because God told me to do this and I will not go against him. I would also tell her God must have a very important reason why he has told me to do this. Maybe it was for just a time as this... she has watched it long enough that now she understands it is more than a feeling of feeling bored, but it is for the purpose of doing for a bigger reason than ourselves, but to bring glory to our Father in heaven.

So today, we celebrate Hailee. I went and had lunch with both girls and Hailee picked McDonalds (yuck!), I dropped cupcakes off at the school for her class to enjoy, after school we will go shopping, and tonight for dinner she has chosen to eat at the Rain Forest Café... so we are all excited!

I am blessed!

Monday, November 11, 2013

God Day

Today has been a crazy God filled day. First of all, I was privileged to meet with a fellow Bengali from Bangladesh today and as we talked he knew all the people I had met over there last year. It was amazing! Such a small country filled with over 150 million people and this one man and I knew the same people. Amazing! My new friend, Samir was also part of a testimony we heard from Jaytesh on God's great faithfulness and provision. It was an amazing time today and I learned so much. Finding that bridge between each religion to point to Jesus... really they all point to Jesus.

Second, I have decided to quit pushing against the Lord and just trust him. I have been trying to raise money for my next mission trip to India in September 2014, but I have not had much success. I haven't had much success because I have been ignoring the Lord. He has been telling me for a while now that He would be providing but not through fundraising. He has told me over and over again Advocare will provide, but I ignored him because I was not trusting him. Bob and I have plans to take the girls to Disney World next summer and my Advocare income is going to pay for it, but I was limiting God and telling him He couldn't do both. I kept telling Him "that is so much money all at once... no way can that be done!" But today it has hit me... who am I to limit and infinite all powerful God? Nothing is to much for Him!

So, I tell you now... I am surrendering myself and believing and having faith the Lord can do more than I could ever imagine. I have faith he will provide for both Disney World (in August) and the mission trip to India (in September). I will keep you all updated on the wonders of God!

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Our way or His way?

It is so hard to live in this world and live around all the worldly things and not to get sucked into it all. Does anyone else have this issue? Especially in this time of Spring... I am being pushed out of my comfort zone into the world... to interact with people and all the worldly things. A lot of times this doesn't feel right. I never realized until now... the Lord was sheltering me and building me up through the 2 years of winter. I really was secluded and he really was all I was focusing on for 2 years. He did a lot in that time... and truthfully I am just realizing this now as I type all of this out for all the world to see. There sure is a lot of world talk in this blog post. LOL!

About a month ago, I received an email from a friend telling me about his brother, whom I have come to love as my brother... my friend told me his brother was beat by fundamentalist Muslims, who were very unhappy with his brother for sharing the gospel to people who are longing for the Truth.

From my brother:
"i have gone to visit a believer family in the morning of 17 oct, islamic a fandamantal group has come to know that, i am going to spend a weak at kalapara with our believers.so, they was trying to catch me, when i was at the Mr aziz house, that time a man come (nighbour of aziz) & he saw us that, we were doing pheloship. but that nighbour does not like christianity at all, so, he called a islamik imam, imam called many peoples, in that time, one of our good wisher called to me that, if you want to be saved, plz run from that house at once. and then, we do not do last prayer & leaved that house & reached a village market through avery bad un popular muddy path,but unfortunately, that crazy people group saw us & they also come to same place............... they was very hot,asked many bad, meaning less, question. finaly they torchured me..................................... i cant control my tear.i will tell you detail when i see you face to face, 1:45 houres i was in torchured."

I have heard stories like this before and it is overwhelming... I have a hard time wrapping my mind around the fact that someone could do that to another person. I mean... you watch this stuff on TV but never think of it being true. But, it is to the point of tears...

So... I leave you with this...
“God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers. Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way.

“You are the salt of the earth. But what good is salt if it has lost its flavor? Can you make it salty again? It will be thrown out and trampled underfoot as worthless."

“You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father." Matthew 5

This is a message to the true believers in Christ, the followers, who believe in only him and nothing extra. Because extra is of this world.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Busy and Changing...

WOW! I have not written since June!! WOW! What is wrong with me? Oh... its life. Life has gotten busy and transforming. I was in the winter phase of my walk with the Lord for about 2 years and NOW I am in the spring phase. Does this make sense? I have been reading a book off and on called Spiritual Rhythm: Being with Jesus Every Season of Your Soul by Mark Buchanan. This book talks about the different seasons of your faith. Anyways... I am in Spring and it is crazy! But, I am learning to enjoy it.

In May, I began working my home-based business Advocare and it is providing in so many ways. First way is I have lost 60 pounds, healthier, and happier and second way is it is providing extra income for our family. Plus, it is giving other people a chance to change their lives in weight loss or having a Plan B.

Then in August, school began and I have become every involved in things going on there as well and it has been fun to meet new people and stretch myself in a way I would not have chosen. Only by the grace of God am I on the path that I am... and I am enjoying where I am and what he is doing.

I am going to be making more time to blog... I have really missed sharing my heart and recording what the Lord is up to in this life.

My sweet Hailee turns 9 next week and we are having her birthday party this up coming weekend. I can not believe it has been 9 years since the birth of my first born... I am having a hard time wrapping my mind around it, but it sure is sweet. I will share more on this child and how her character has grown and how her beautiful spirit has poured out on others.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Quiet Time is Over!

Do you remember me talking about how the Lord had cut me off and put me in quiet time? I think I have been in quiet time for about 2 years. WOW! Is that right? Anyways... I believe it is the time he is plucking me out. "But God, I am so comfortable!" He doesn't care... he is throwing me out. Now I have to be brave... step out and make new friends where his path is leading me. Oh... it is so hard.

I am also going to begin working... not getting a job out of the home, but working from home. Almost a year ago I became a distributor with Advocare. Advocare is company that has been around for 20 years and they have some of the most wonderful health products... Anywhere from performance, weight loss, energy, wellness. We have been using the products for a year and love them, but now is the time to make a business! It is time to step out of my comfort zone and share with everyone I meet how great these product are! This is extremely scary for me, but I want to help my family financially. Anyways... this is one of the ways the Lord is pulling me out of my comfortable cave.

School is out for summer tomorrow and I believe next year the Lord is going to pull me out even farther... school functions. It will be good though. I am excited to be part of both of the girl's adventures in Elementary! I am eagerly awaiting what the Lord places upon my path. :)

Only time will tell....

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Where is this faith we speak of...

This week I have been consumed by thoughts of Christians who preach it on Sunday (or while at church) and then go out in the community and turn their back on the words they professed.

How is it we can go to the building, we as believers in Jesus Christ worship our living God in communion and say and sing we will live out our faith beyond the church doors and when it comes down to it and the moment presents itself... we grow weak and turn our back on what we always confess to be the way to live for Jesus?

I mean... the Lord gives us these opportunities to prove our devotion to him. To prove to the world, the world that we are in constant battle with, that we are different. But when we fail and turn the "least of these" away because it is not appealing to our eyes or what we think is not right... how does this make true followers of Christ look?

What if that person we shoo away was an angel in disguise and was to return to our Father and give a report on our actions? The possibilities are endless.

This is not to point fingers at one person, but it is to open our eyes to the things we do not see. We as believers in the one and only Savior, Jesus Christ need to be ready at any moment for that opportunity to show some love to the "least of these"... our fellow neighbors.

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
“Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”" Mark 12:30-33

Nothing is more important than laying ourselves down and letting go of our ego and pride to simply be Jesus with skin on. There is no excuse or worry bigger than what the Lord has put in our path. Next time you have an opportunity... think... Maybe this is an angel in disguise.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

I am D.O.N.E.

I am supposed to be doing so much more than sitting here typing this blog. I haven't sent an important email I was suppose to send about a month ago and I know they are probably waiting for my reply, but it isn't good news and procrastinate in my middle name!

It's almost that I can not think straight... I am so ready for school to be out for the summer I could scream! I am tired of the routine, homework, and all this crazy scheduling the school has going on and of course Hailee wants me at every single one! I tell her "I can't baby. I am sorry. Next year I will be there." The thing is I will have two in school next year and it will be double work, but that is next year and I will be refreshed and ready to return to the grind.

I am sick and tired of the school asking me for money in some shape or form. One day it is money for next years school supplies, the next day it is money for an end of the year teacher gift that the whole class is going in on, or money for a yearbook, etc. The list is never ending. I did not send money for every little thing... you have to pick and choose what really matters, but that is hard for kids to comprehend. I need a break!

VBS prep has started. This is all consuming as well... a lot of practice practice practice as I am on the preschool music team again this year! Oh, how I love it, but so much work when all I want to do is sit by the pool. But I know there will be plenty of this in 3 1/2 days. Everyday I tell myself (and Hailee if she is around) "We can do this!"

We all just need a break! I am hoping during this summer break there will be time for me to catch up on things around the house that need to be done. *sigh*

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Waiting for Summer to Begin...

I am eagerly awaiting summer to begin. I am eagerly waiting for the last day of school and that we will all be home under one roof having summer fun! I can't wait until the busyness of the school year to be done and the "laziness" of summer to begin. I am excited about VBS starting soon and the preparation that goes along with all of that. I am excited about where the Lord is leading me.

I am SO excited on how I hear of the good news of people coming to a revelation of who God is... don't get me confused about God. The God I am talking about is the one true God, who breathed and spoke the Word in motion. The God I am talking about is the God, who breathed life into us. The God who people were confused about or angry at... they are learning of His great forgiveness and unfailing love. So many people are learning of his promises written in His word. I am overjoyed!

Great things are happening with the Bhutanese as all different Hindu casts are coming together and sitting together having conversation together. I believe they are seeing our love we have as believers in Jesus and our joy through our salvation and that is making them very curious.

Big things are happening through His Kingdom.

This picture was taken on Mother's Day. I am overjoyed by the path the Lord has me on.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Happy May First

May is a lovely month, because usually it brings in the hot (or warm) of summer. Today we celebrated the first day of May at a local splash pad.


Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Where is Jesus?

I know sometimes I become very overcome by the darkness of this world. My heart aches from the attack on unborn life to the capturing of innocent men and women and making them slaves. My heart aches as God's word is being rejected and our own worldly desires are over shadowing the holiness of God. My heart aches as believers in our Lord Jesus Christ are scared to speak the Lord's name in fear of offending someone.

But, I was encouraged today while listening to our Christian radio station here in Houston that starting today on Capitol Hill there was going to be the annual reading of the entire Bible. People come and volunteers read starting in Genesis and ending in Revelation. They say it takes 90 hours to read the whole book. Amazing! This encouraged me a lot today and prayed earnestly for our country, for the freedom we have, and for our holy God to fall upon us.

I pray for an awakening in the church, His people, and our homes. We are all so lost and confused without Him and we don't even know it. I want nothing to do with anything that has nothing to do with my Father... it is very hard for me to make myself shine my light in the darkness, because I want to stay where the light is the brightest. But, this is not what we are called to do... we are told to go out into all the world no matter if it is dark or not.

I am thankful for my faith and how it is growing stronger, because the day will come where the light will be hard to find. But, I am thankful one little flicker of light can light up the darkest of rooms.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Fundraising

Fundraising is not my favorite thing to do... not because I have to do work or anything like that... It is not my favorite thing because I hate asking for money. Even though I am not literally asking for money... I know doing the fundraiser is for money and everyone participating know I need money. But, the Lord teaches me through these times to put my pride aside and let him worry about that. I was very anxious and unsure about this fundraiser that I did today, because I was not having the response I had from the last child watch fundraiser. Last year we had 22 kids in our home and we raised so much money! I was comparing this fundraiser to last years... but God gave me a light slap and said "It doesn't matter how much you will raise in this fundraiser, but have faith I WILL PROVIDE!" So, I rested in that... and he did provide! He sent more kids than I was expecting... Plus I had the joy to build relationships with the next generation. Nothing is sweeter than having a conversation with a sweet 7 year old on why I am doing this and where and what God is calling me to do. Even though Bob and I are tired... we are beyond blessed!

Plus, to make this day even brighter the Lord is starting a new friendship with a neighborhood lady. I am amazed at how our miraculous Creator works and how His timing is always perfect. I few months ago some women were challenged to walk their neighborhood and prayer walk. I did that and I am beginning to see the fruit. I am amazed at God's beautiful glory and tender care for us as we step out and do something a little uncomfortable to our World's view.


I am weak in my flesh, but overly strong in my Spirit.

Friday, April 26, 2013

Wherever God sends me

Tomorrow is my first Fundraiser for the mission God has me on. I am excited about what he is doing in me. I am excited to see who he brings tomorrow.

As I prepare for the country God is taking me... I have an eagerness to be reunited with my brothers and sisters in Bangladesh. I think of the moment I will see them and the tears that will fall as I am reunited... I think of the embrace and joy I will fill. I pray that this is His will and not mine... I pray as this is a desire of my heart that it will be pleasing to Him.

My life is not my own, but a constant sacrifice to Him.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Many thoughts No words

Lately, there have been many thoughts going through my mind... most of my thoughts are wrapped around this world we have become. My heart aches for those who do not know their Savior and are out there doing this on their own. Soon that days will be so bad that I fear for the lives that feel alone. But, I do know that God knows this... He knows my heart, the lost people's heart, and everyone's concerns and fears. I pray as the lasts days come closer many who do not know their Maker will be at a point that they will hear the whisper of God and that by the grace and mercy of our Lord will soften their hearts to the point of throwing away the confussion. I believe so much of our pride keeps away from becoming closer to our God... maybe even to not knowing Him.

I never know what the Lord has for me each and everyday but, every morning I pray for His path for me that day would be evident and that I would be obedient to follow Him. Am I obedient everyday? No. But, He is teaching me everyday and revealing to me my wrong and I take that as a lesson and warning.

May we not hide behind our doors and may we get out and shine the Light we were given as a gift.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Turning to God for more than...

So while my grandmother, who I call Mom was in the hospital we watched on TV this preacher give a sermon. He read and spoke on Amos. I am not expert on the Bible and truthful have not read through Amos (more than likely), but the sermon spoke a lot about these days we have been experiencing as a country.

We have been experiencing a lot of hurt and attacks on our country lately especially the Boston bombing and all that goes a long with this horrible terror. The police believe they have found the suspects and after the last one was caught and arrested the whole city of Boston was celebrating in the streets shouting "USA USA USA!" It was like they were routing for a US team in the Olympics or something but, no... It was excitement over the victims being caught and in critical conditions. Don't get me wrong... I am happy he was caught and justice will fall upon them but, I am not sure how I feel about the shouting in the streets. Do you?

Of course during this time the country is coming together and praying... Praying for the victims, the families of the victims, and for God to intervene and fix all the bad stuff going on but, Why do we turn to God for a short time?? Why do we turn to him only when we need him or something? Is God a genie?

I believe things in our world will get worse before they get better. I believe this is only the beginning of hurt and blood shed. We should not seek The Lord just when we need him but, everyday (even when we think we don't need him)! There is stuff going on every single day that hurts or brings terror upon families and God simply once us to turn to Him and nothing else of this world.

What is going to happen now? We are going to return to our selfish ways and turn our backs on God. He is a God, who is jealous for us! We are not going to see calmness until people of this world quit turning their back on Him and start seeking God as the answer to our problems. I know I sound crazy but, nothing is going to get better without Him.

Think about it. Try praying to him everyday throughout the day for one month... I bet you anything He will change your life.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Life

Last night I found out my grandmother (I call her Mom), who is like a mother to me had a stoke earlier in the day. She assumed it was something else and did not go to the hospital. So now I am in Tyler, TX anxiously waiting to see her.

I am sleeping in her house, in her bed tonight. I love her room because she has pictures covering the walls. Old and new photos of her family, pictures and photos from her travels around the world, drawings from students (when she was a teacher), and diplomas of all her accomplishments. This room is filled with memories!

All day today I have thought about life. We never know when our last day will be, we never know when we will meet with a loved one for the last time, and we never will know when sickness will fall upon us.
But as I have been thinking about Mom a lot today I have thought of all she has been through... Loss of a child, loss of husbands, sickness that has fallen upon her, the list can go on... She has never left her Makers side. I am sure she has questioned Him etc, but she is the one that presses on knowing Jesus when know one else is. She is the one that never gave up on me and keep bringing me back to Jesus when I would be with her.

I believe Mom has more time on this earth and I know she will not take it for granted because she has been given a life of heart ache but she keeps pushing on.

I hope and pray we can use her faith as an example to live by... No matter how bad or hard things may get... We have One who is right be side us ready to carry us to our next journey. To live this life for what it was given to us for... To love one another and cherish our memories.

Monday, April 15, 2013

The Calling of my Heart

The nations are my calling... I think you all know this, but what you don't know is the constant aching of my heart when He changed my plans. My heart my mind is always with my brothers and sisters in Bangladesh. I have a deep love for the Bengali people. I know and I still feel I will return, but I am guessing the Lord has a different plan on when I will return. He has put a deep calling in me to go to Jordan... in Jordan there is a new ministry our church has begun partnering with. This ministry helps the Syrian Refugees who had to flee from Syria due to the violent and unsafe environment. Some of the Syrians have lived in Jordan for over 20 years and they are just waiting for their home country to calm down so they can return home. My heart aches for refugees... I couldn't imagine being forced out of your home country and told to start a new life or a temperary life in an unfimilar land.

My heart yearns to return to Bangladesh and maybe it will but, right now the country is not doing well. We don't even know if they next trip in October will happen. There is so much uncertainty right now... But I do know what the Lord is telling me and even though it breaks my heart I have said yes to going where He leads me.

I am excited for where the Lord is taking me next and excited for the new adventure of meeting new people and loving them as Christ loves them.

I will give a new update... when I hear more clearly on what is next.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Why is it so hard for Americans to wrap their mind around the Truth?

For some odd reason the Lord led me to read the book of Nahum. It is a very short book; only 3 chapters, but why? He also has been having me read through Romans. Romans is an awesome book and today I read through Chapter 3... let me just say chapter 3 is so good! But, at the end of my read Father got me thinking... Why do we as Americans have such a hard time believing the Truth? Why do some many of us have to change the Truth to something we feel comfortable with? Or why do we feel like we need to change the very words of God to something that makes mores sense to us or to make it "better"? Let me just share when it started getting good and where He began to make me ponder... (*warning: I will be jumping around in chapter 3)

"First of all, the Jews were entrusted with the whole revelation of God."
They were entrusted with God's law (the whole revelation if God, Ex. 19-20; Duet. 4:8). They were the race through whom the Messiah come to earth (Is. 11:1-10; Matt. 1:1-17). They were the beneficiaries of the covenants with God himself (Gen. 17:1-16; Ex. 19:3-6). But these privileges did not make them better than anyone else.

"Even if everyone else is a liar, God is true."
Once Jesus died and everyone had access to Him... some Jews began to think they were better than the Gentiles (you and I) but, in the end Jesus did not just die for the Jews... he died for Americans, Indians, Africans, etc. No matter how good we think we are... we are nothing in comparison to God and these days we seem to forget this.

Then Paul begins to talk about the law and how it is not about following it out of obligation, but following out of your heart.

"Obviously, the law applies to those to whom it was given, for its purpose is to keep people from having excuses, and to show the the entire world is guilty before God. For no one can ever be made right by doing what the law commands. The law simply shows us how sinful we are."

"We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are."

Faith?? I wonder if a lot of people know what this is or not? Do you know what this means?

Faith- complete trust or confidence in someone or something.

To believe in the one true God no matter if you can see him or not. Putting your trust in the one who made all things and knows all things before it even happens. Knowing it is not up to you and no matter how much you will fight to be in control... in the end it is God's will. God's way. Not my way, but only his and trusting a believing in his promises in the Bible that he has got everything that will come my way in his hands... if I will simply have faith.

"For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God's glorious standard. Yet God, with undeserving kindness, declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. For God presented Jesus as a sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood."

Sin?? What is it?

Sin- an immoral act considered to be a transgression against divine law.

Sin is a lie (no matter how big or small... there is no in between with God), murder, looking at women with sexual intentions (married or not), putting other gods before the one true God (your god can be the TV, your phone, computer, or maybe a figurine your worship), wanting what others have (not being content with your own things), maybe wanting some one else's wife, using the holy name of God in your everyday speech (such as "Oh my God!"), not respecting your parents (even though they maybe wrong they are still your parents... you do not have to like what they do or maybe who they are but they still are above you), you should not steal (even if it only costs 10 cents it is not yours to own if you do not pay for it). My list can go on and on, but one thing I do know is... No sin is bigger than the other! In God's eyes a sin is a sin. Murdering is equal to not obeying your parents.

"God did this to demonstrate his righteousness, for he himself is fair and just, and he declares sinners to be right in his sight when they believe in Jesus. Can we boast, then, that we have done anything to be accepted by God? No, because our acquittal is not based on obeying the law. It is based on faith. So we are made right with God through faith and not by obeying the law."

I can be good all day long. I can follow rules, I can help people, I can do what as I see right, but all of it is nothing if we don't believe or trust in Jesus. I am going to be getting to my point very soon, but we as Americans (and other nationalities) think that this is it... being good, helping others. There is more to it... being in unity with the one who made you. I don't care what anyone says we did not form from slim! We are way to unique and confusing to have anything to do with being formed from slim. Think about it... No one is a like. We all are so very different... think about our bodies... some people have big noses, some are tall while others are short, we all have different feet, and our insides are so very different. Some of us can get sick very easily, while some are very sensitive to animals and pollen. My list can go one and on. We were created for a very specific purpose and I believe it is to learn to have faith in the one who died for us. The one who sits in heaven knowing what is going to happen next in our life, but what are we to do? Have trust and to lean on each other in unity as we become believers in Christ Jesus that our hearts would be one.

"After all, is God the God of the Jews? Isn't he also the God of the Gentiles? Of course he is. There is only one God, and he makes people right with himself only by faith, whether you are Jews or Gentiles. Well then, if we emphasize faith, does this mean that we can forget about the law? Of course not! In fact, only when we have faith do we truly fulfill the law."

It all rolls in together... faith and the Law. Once you become a believer, you never want to go back to your old self. Our old self was bond by bondage (anger, guilt, grudges, or sex, pornography, etc.)... once you begin that new life you should want nothing of the before to be part of your relationship with our holy God.

When I was done reading this chapter, God made me really think about what is making us as Americans turn away from God and except things of this world over the one who created us and it hit me! We don't get the text of the Bible! What is a sacrifice? We have nothing to relate this to in our culture. Sacrifice? Why would we ever sacrifice something that is so "good" and makes us feel "good"? We have no idea what this means... the perfect spotless Lamb. Or maybe we as Americans have no idea about the the Law the Jews follow. I mean I had no clue when I was younger what this all meant. And when we as Christian Americans run at the unbelieving Americans... "Do you know your Savior?", or if we start talking to them about Jesus and why he is so great... they don't get it because we never started in the beginning.

Does this make any sense? We as Americans are lost because we as Christian Americans forget or don't know... you have to tell the story before you start asking questions.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Wind

I am calling this post "Wind" because it has been so windy through out this week. Today Bob and I took the girls to a near by park to take picture and to practice my photography. Here are a few of my favorite shots of the day...
 



 
 
 




Even though it was out of control windy today... we worked with it. 

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Women will be Women

Women will be women no matter where they live, what language they speak, or how much money they have. This blog post was inspired by a young lady, who did not want her picture taken today. I was wanting to get s picture of all these Bhutanese ladies sitting on a couch. Well as soon as I said "Everyone look at me!" She turned her head and moved from the couch. It made me think... How many times have I done that? How many times have you done that? Most women always take a double take on what they are wearing or how their hair or make-up look. So just because she is Bhutanese and comes from a different part of the world she was worried about the same thing you and I would worry about before we got our picture taken.

Then it made me think about my travels to India and the things we found out about the ladies there. Even though the women we met had been through the hardest things you could ever imagine... they were still women. They would get together with their girlfriends and would talk about their husbands, or mother-in-laws (which I NEVER do)... JUST LIKE YOU AND I!

Women are women no matter what! But, as women sometimes we get consumed with what others have and then we see how pretty it is and we WANT one just like it. We were once content but then discontent falls upon us. But, when the Lord reveals to us our sin or how much we already have... it is convicting. Today I took a sweet Bhutanese friend to Michael's (a craft store) to get her some more yarn to crochet to finish a project she had been working on for a while. She was very persistent that I take her TODAY! I was pleased to take her because this young lady doesn't ask for much and she melted my heart the first time I ever met her. Thankfully we found the yarn and we got back to the apartments and we parted ways (after I got a hug). I went to visit a dear friend and told her where I was and that I took the lady to get yarn... I thought my sweet friend might get jealous or maybe a little upset, but she didn't. She told me how much she really liked the young lady and that she loves how simple she is. My sweet friend it so right.

Then I began to ponder on being simple. The Lord has been making my life very simple lately. He has been directing me to where I should go and how this is time to be still and quiet. He has simplified me. He has also made me realize I don't need a lot of stuff to make me happy, but he has filled my heart with a lot of love. So much love I don't know what to do with it all, but sometimes just to cry. I think we all need to simplify... actually I have talked to 2 different people today, who have told me they are simplifying stuff in their life or down sizing. WOW God! He always catches me off guard in an awesome way! And another thing the Lord has shown me is as He has been simplifying lives... He has been uniting hearts.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Our Children...

Here is what I have been thinking about for the past couple of weeks... What are we teaching our children? The next generation...

Are we teaching them about money and fame? Are we telling them or living by example that more money is better? Or being recognized by a title is how and what we live for?

Are we teaching our children to boast about themselves and what they have accomplished? Are we teaching them bigger is better?

Tonight I was at a "churchy" related thing (which turned out to be something totally different than I expected) and at first it was good and the choir and instruments were so good... I felt the Spirit, but as soon as some men got up on the stage and shared about all their church had and continued to do... It turned me off an here is why... because I friend of mine is very close to this ministry and she told me it sounded like lies. I have begun to help with this ministry and it made me question a few things this man was saying. Don't get me wrong I am sure this church has really helped this ministry, but why was he continuing to boast about something that needs so much help still?

There was so much talk about money and titles and boasting... It made me feel uneasy. Then it made me think (and feel compelled to write this blog post)... What are we teaching our kids, the next generation? Are we teaching them of Truth or of the world?? What do our Maker want is to boast about?

"Hear, Israel, and be careful to obey so that it may go well with you and that you may increase greatly in a land flowing with milk and honey, just as the Lord, the God of your ancestors, promised you.

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates." Deuteronomy 6:3-9

Thursday, February 21, 2013

A new darkness...

First, let me just say this is not me bashing anything or anyone... this a journal of how my Savior is molding me, bending me, and stretching me as I grow in my faith. My journey of how He is breaking my heart and opening my eyes to things we don't see day to day without His authority. So what I am about to share is part of this journey He has me on and WOW!

Today is Thursday, my day to go visit my Bhutanese friends. I truly look forward to these days, because you NEVER know what you are going to get or where the Lord will lead your feet. I had an idea on what today was going to look like, because I made an appointment with a new friend the week before (I blogged a little bit about her last week). A few days before today I was informed my new friend comes from a high cast Hindu family and I thought that was pretty good information before I went in completely unaware. This was my first time in their home and it was very clean and inviting... and if you know me I vocalize everything, so I told my new friend and her mother-in-law how much I loved their home, so they took me around and showed me their rooms. Okay great! :) The mother-in-law insisted she show me her room first so, we go to her room and she was all about showing me her shrine of her gods. She was bowing before her gods and she gave me a very strong impression she wanted me to bow as well... while all this was going on I had a voice in my ear saying "You will not bow before any other gods but me.". I did not bow! I was then taken to my friends room and it was very nice too. She also had a little shrine as well, but she did not bow in front of it or anything like what happened with her mother-in-law.

The mother-in-law was very happy I was in her home and she wanted me to sit and look at all these pictures she had of her family and so I did. I really enjoy looking at pictures... the people in the pictures, what they may have been thinking or doing, what the surroundings were. It is just one of my weird things... I will sit there forever with you and your pictures. :) Anyways, my new friend and I sat and did henna... actually she did henna on me... not the best henna I have had on me and not sure if I still want it on me after what happened later and the darkness that hovered over me later, but none the less it is on me for the next week or so. My new friend and I got to know eachother more and that was very nice, but after about an hour it was time to go. Then my friend's husband came home for lunch and it was very nice to meet him and talk with him a little. We began to talk about how Americans are very wasteful (this conversation started when I started sharing my views on advertisements we get in the mail) and after the American bashing I said "Well, there will be an end one day and none of this will be here anymore." And that was the end and he both said our goodbyes.

I then went and visited my sweet friend, Ranuka, who loves me and my children very well. I am very thankful to her and her husband, Kumar. They are always very hospitable and opened to talk to me about many things. I thank the Lord for their friendship and pray one day our hearts will be united in Christ.

When I left the apartments I had a TERRIBLE headache. I came home and laid down for a bit and when I woke up I had this heaviness upon me, a dark looming feeling. I tried to call Margie and talk with her about my experiences today, but she did not answer so I text messaged my sister, Andrea. I started to explain the happenings of the day and she wrote me quickly "Call it out in the name of Jesus. Don't allow it to hang around." and so I did. It instantly lifted. Satan did not like that I stood before his little figurines in the altar, he has worked so hard at confusing and at his bondage schemes, that he wrapped me up in some of his darkness. I am so thankful for the blood of Jesus and that I can simply call out to Him and He hears me... and that I am a child of righteousness. Thank you Jesus.

I know without a doubt the Lord is preparing me for something...

As I ponder about what happened today I can't help think about how a lot of us so called believers in Jesus Christ think it is okay to be okay with these breakable gods. These gods that if were dropped would shatter. How is it okay to coexist with so many who do not know the LOVE of Christ? How is it okay to coexist with so many who have never been told or introduced to the Gospel stories that are all connected to the perfect Lamb? How is it okay to give up on the ones, who have never had the chance to hear the name of Jesus because it is too hard or too uncomfortable? I understand loving them where they are and building a relationship, but why do we stop there? These other gods could NEVER be connected to the One true God! You wanna know why... because a lot of people (most all of them) don't know the names of their gods or to top that off... they don't know what that god does or maybe even... why do they worship him/her.

So my question is... Why follow and put so much effort into these gods that you don't know and who doesn't know you?

"Listen to me, O my people, while I give you stern warnings.
O Israel, if you would only listen to me!
You must never have a foreign god;
you must not bow down before a false god.
For it was I, the Lord your God,
 who rescued you from the land of Egypt.
Open your mouth wide, and I will fit it with good things." Psalm 81:8-10

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Genuine Love

The last couple of days genuine love has been on my mind. What is genuine love? How do I make genuine love part of my everyday life? Not just loving my family with this genuine love, but taking it outside the inside of my house.

I was challenged when I was talking to a dear brother through Facebook instant messaging this weekend and I told him how much I miss his and his wife's genuine love. He wrote back and said "No sister I think you have this love also". It got me thinking... Do I have this love? Do I love with this genuine love and others feel it? If you read my blog often then you know I am pretty hard on myself... I think lowly of myself... thinking I am not good enough to live this life in Christ (and I am not, but by his blood and this death I am and I am beyond thankful). I began telling myself I do not love with this genuine love... but then I began to think... I love my brothers and sister in India and Bangladesh with this love... I love my Bhutanese brothers, sisters, and friends with this genuine love. But, what about my own nationality? Do I do that well?

I don't think I love my fellow Americans very well. Truthfully we are overly blessed to the point we don't know we are being blessed because of our silly little problems we face every single day. For instance, when Hailee gets home from school and Heidi is no longer the "only child" the house gets loud, tears fall over nothing, people scream at each other, homework has to be done, cooking dinner, and then cleaning... I was thinking at 5:00 pm today "When is this day going to be over?!?". I stopped what I was thinking and I was completely ashamed! This day has been nothing but perfect and here I am complaining over NOTHING! We all do this... and we know nothing about true blessings. We get so caught up in ourselves we forget about the bigger picture.

Last week I was asked by a friend "How are you doing?" I said, "I am good, nothing worth complaining about." And my friend said "That is a very Christian response." That caught me completely off guard. I said to my friend (which I can't remember my exact words) something like... in the big picture I don't have the right to complain. Truthfully I was at the beginning of a cold and laid on the couch all day, but in the big picture I was not dying! I had a cold! I was fine and I was thankful to be well enough to be at church and learn more about the character of my Savior.

Father is teaching me more about genuine love. He is opening my eyes and teaching me to show it to my own people/nationality. I am become more aware of my issues (which are like yours), but come on people open your eyes to the BIGGER picture! We are not the only ones on this planet! There are so many people that need to be loved and cared for... don't just keep this love God gave us inside your homes. Smile always. Be cheerful when you talk to others. Even when I don't feel like it... I do it anyways because it isn't always about me. I am being taught that as well... it isn't always about me. :)

If you think this way or not I believe love is a Spiritual gift. Gifts given specifically to followers of Christ to edify His church. I believe service is also a unified gift, but I won't go there. Love is a precious gift given to us by God. A gift that without truly knowing Him and what He did here on this earth and knowing why he died for us... I have seen many faces that look so empty because they do not know this gift of Love. This deep desire inside to share and pour out on everyone you meet. This gift is given freely and without truly knowing it for yourself... I am sorry to say you do not know genuine love. I once did not know true genuine love, but when I became a believer in my Lord and Savior my eyes were open and I was given this Love.

Just think about your Genuine Love and what it looks like in your life.

Friday, February 15, 2013

My dear brother, Joe

It has been about 4 months since returning home from Bangladesh and the country and the people are still deep in my heart. Even people I met in Kolkata over a year ago are still deep in my heart... maybe it has some thing to do with that they are all Bengali. Who knows? Bengali people must just be so warm and loving so, when you meet them they suck you in and you love them forever. What do you think?

I have decided I need to get back to talking about the Bangladesh mission tripI went on in October. I am going to share about another friendship, who is more like a brother. Today I am going to tell you about my brother Joe. Joe is Mortuza's blood brother but, my brother in Christ. Joe and I met in Chittagong and I never thought what an impact he would make on me but, on the second day in Chittagong he translated my Testimony. First off it is very hard to share my testimony because, it is a very personal part of me that is being given to my listeners and I then wonder... when they receive this personal part of me, what are they going to do with it? So, having Joe translate my story for the first time in Bangladesh was very special. Not only was he a listener as well but, he was going to translate it to the best of his ability the same way I shared it. And if you didn't know... 1 English word translates to 5 Bengali words... it is not easy. But, I believe Joe did a wonderful job! After I was done sharing my testimony all I wanted to do was hug Joe and he told me "I do not have a problem hugging you but, because of our culture it would not be right." Yay, that hurt a bit. :)


This is Joe and I after lunch. See he did touch me a little... :)
The NO touching was kind of hard for me. I really learned how much I touch and how much I need to touch. Do you ever think about how much you touch? When you are restricted and have to consciously think about not touching it is hard and makes you very aware. For instance... you had to think about where you sat and how close you would be sitting to a male, or if we were praying for a male and laying hands on him we had to make sure it was okay first, etc. But, truthfully they were all okay with it. We took a group picture and all the men were very close to us women... I was very surprised, but I think they liked us. ;)

Joe sharing his vision for his people.
Before Joe left us to return home to his family he shared his vision to Uncle Gil and Brother Brian. Joe has a BIG vision for his Bengali people, who are homeless, for the orphans, the oppressed, and the sick. He has such a BIG tender heart that and he completely took Andrea and I into his heart that overwhlemed us to tears. His young man has a BIG godly vision and all he needs is support- money to make God's kingdom in Bangladesh grow and flourish. When my brother left us in Chittagong I cried. My heart was unitied with his and all I wanted was to be with him more and learn more about him and his vision. All I wanted to do was hug him and thank him for everything, but we could not hug, but I could cry like a baby. ;) Nothing is more amazing than what God does in a short time with fellow believers and bringing them so close.

3 brothers- Salauddin, Mortuza, and Joe
 
My heart is completely united with the believers in Bangladesh and by God's grace I will be returning in the following trip in October. I will be having a fundraiser to help me return, so keep an eye out.

Here is a glimpse into our trip to Bangladesh

Thursday, February 14, 2013

A life I am thankful for...

Everyday I pray the Lord will take this day and make it into whatever he wants... a lot of the times my flesh gets in the way and I completely ruin what could have been so glorifying to my Father. It makes me sick when I give into the world or fleshly desires (which is never good). But, days like today when I am blessed to get a glimpse into what he is up to or planning. Then I ponder on what next week will hold.

A few weeks ago, I met a very sweet young Bhutanese lady and when we met she shared more with me in our first meeting then most do... it usually takes me a good while to learn deep details in some of the ladies lives I have met. Maybe she felt very comfortable with me in our first meeting or maybe she really needed to talk to someone... who knows? But, today with our second meeting of really having a good conversation I began to feel the urging of the Holy Spirit. I started thinking on this and I am ready for what the Lord wants of me. My life is no longer my own but, my Saviors and I don't live for myself but, I live for my Creator. I am so excited about this new friendship, because I am thinking the Lord is giving me this quiet time in my life to build relationships with my Bhutanese friends and to pray and meditate on what my Father is preparing me for in this life.

We have plans for next week and I am excited to share more on our next meeting.

"The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed,
a stronghold in times of trouble.
Those who know your name trust in you,
for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.
Sing the praises of the Lord, enthroned in Zion;
proclaim among the nations what he has done." Psalm 9:9-11 

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Quiet... Shhh...

Last year, the Lord really began to pull me away from people, activities, etc. He told me this was a time for quiet. And let me tell ya' He wasn't kidding. This year also continues to be very quiet and He intended on that as well. Truthfully, He has secluded me to my family and that is about it... occasionally I will have friends over, but not much. Don't get me wrong you are invited and I love to have a good conversation... this is all God. I know it sounds crazy that He would seclude me from believers but, truthfully this has been a good time. The noise and distraction of the business is gone... I can't blame that anymore for taking my time away from God. But, of course I have made new distractions and Father is now telling me I need to get rid of those too. :)

When I returned home from Bangladesh I began a fast from Facebook and it was so good. During the day light hours I would not be on Facebook, but when that sun went down I was all about catching up on what the day brought. I began getting caught up in it again and my fasting ended and Facebook over took my time with God. This week I have started again... staying off Facebook during the day light hours and let me tell you... it feels so good. My mind is not bogged down on what is going on with everyone but, simply frees me from bondage to my idol.

My life continues to be very quiet. I talk to no one all day unless you call or I call, or I see you out and about and we talk... that's it and so simple. I dreaded this seclusion at first, but not so much anymore. :)