Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Forgive Again

Last year my daughter, Kiera came home from school with a report stating she needed a bit more academic support in her reading. I was so angry…very angry.

As I sat on my couch trying to figure out when I would fit this new assignment into my already jam-packed schedule – I just fumed. I was not happy!

I knew I was mad but I also realized I was a bit over the top with my feelings about this situation. I was not upset with my daughter or the school but I was very frustrated.

I called Aunt CC to vent and as I was talking to her, I said, “if Eric (Kiera’s father) was here I would not be in this situation.” I would not have all this responsibility on my own – I was so angry with him. I was overwhelmed with the magnitude of the responsibility of raising my daughter alone.

Now, I thought I had resolved this and forgiven him and forgiven him and FORGIVEN him some MORE. Evidently, God was allowing me to see I still was operating in some unforgiveness. I cried – frankly I was sick of forgiving him BUT I also knew I did not want bitterness to get a foothold in my life. I cried some more and then I forgave Eric again and asked God to forgive me for harboring this anger – I had not seen it. God is so gracious – I instantly felt lighter and happy again. The overwhelmed feeling was gone.

Thank you Lord for sifting me, again!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

The Love of our Father

I have to highlight a recent affirmation from God – He is such a loving Father. Often my cry to Him is to reach down from heaven and affirm my daughter in her gifting’s and talents. God went so above and beyond!

Yesterday, my daughter was honored at a reception at the Dallas Central Library by the Nasher Sculpture Center as their Grand Prize Winner of their “Dream Collage” contest. She won several lovely prizes.
The best part was that she was affirmed as an artist. She is very talented and she has now been recognized in a public forum. I know God has orchestrated this for her. He has instilled in her amazing talents in the arts and I know through her talents she will be a bright light on the hill for Him.

I have included a picture of her work which will be hung in the Nasher Sculpture Center on October 18, 2008 along with other great artist such as Pablo Picasso. God is great!

His children will be mighty in the land…. Psalm 112:2

Monday, August 18, 2008

Still Standing!

In life, we have the privilege of interfacing with people with extraordinary strength and bravery – individuals that stand up for what is right no matter the adversity and even if that means standing alone…..heroes!

I have a few heroes in my life and one of them is my daughter. My daughter was in first grade last year at our local public school. Last spring she told me the following story:

In my daughter’s first grade class there were only 6 girls and 11 boys, so the girls were a rather tight group often playing with one another. The students had gone out to the playground to play. The girls all ran out to the swing set and sat crossed legged on the ground, closed their eyes and put there arms and hands out and began to “ohm” over and over.

My daughter still standing told them to stop – she explained to them that they were calling up demons. She explained that Jesus would not want them to “ohm”. The girls listened to her but then began to “ohm” again only louder.

I asked my daughter, “ What did you do?” She quickly replies, “I went and played by myself”. I was so proud of her at this moment.

But being her mother I also wanted to protect her and wanted to make sure she did not feel rejected. I said, “ are you OK – how do you feel?”

My daughter looked at me and said, “Mom I am fine -- remember, you told me I am leader not a follower.”

She is a true hero – warrior for Jesus!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Amazing Grace

My daughter and I live in a wonderful place in Dallas, TX but we don’t have washer/dryer connections. Going to the laundry mat weekly has been a new urban experience for us. After scouting out many laundry mats in our area, we settled on the one with the best machines. At our laundry mat, we are usually the only ones that speak English but we have used this as an opportunity to practice our novice Spanish language skills. The laundry mat is usually full of people, some are old and some are young. I have tried to make a dreary weekly chore fun and adventurous. We play Pacman and try to guess what they are saying on Spanish TV, but my favorite part is the jukebox – it usually plays Mariachi music. I love it! I have fine tuned the weekly laundry mat visits to under 2 hours. That is driving into the parking lot and driving out.

One day last winter, we doing the usual weekly adventure of washing, loading, and folding and hanging clothes….being a single mom – I was also trying to cram about three other activities into the time too. I had brought my daughter’s dinner – she ate, she did her homework, and practiced her spelling words. We were in the laundry zone.

Earlier, I had noticed water on the floor and evidently it was coming from a washer. The laundry attendant came with a large industrial size bucket full of dirty water and begins to mop up the water. As she gets the mop out of the bucket she flings a bunch of water everywhere barely missing my daughter and I and our folded laundry. I was not happy about this and quickly put my hand up and said, “Stop, please you are getting water all over us.” I know there was a language barrier but I had used a kind tone and held my hand up (a universal sign). The laundry attendant looked at me and continued to mop the water up and dip the mop back into the bucket. Again, she removes the mop from the bucket and flings water everywhere again barely missing us and our clean clothes. I look at the woman in the eyes with my blood boiling and out through my mouth comes my voice singing Amazing Grace at the top of my lungs. Everyone in the laundry mat stops and turns around and is staring at my daughter and I. My daughter is acutely aware all eyes are on us and she just grins at everyone and softly says with great concern in her voice “what are you doing Mother?” In which is I sing to her “I’m singing a song”. Well I only know part of Amazing Grace so on the parts I can’t remember I start humming until I get to the chorus again. I can’t say I am much of a singer so I am sure there were many thoughts running through everyone’s minds – one can only speculate as there was stunned silence hanging in the air.

But it was interesting…..while everything had stopped for a few seconds and silence had fallen – I realized I had sung a universal song – a spiritual song and through this song I was able to communicate peace and love….. the woman finished mopping moving to the other side of the laundry mat and I gathered my child and clothes up and we left without incident. I suddenly felt refreshed and inspired!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

The Gold Key

A few months ago my daughter and I were at the laundry mat and she asked for money to purchase something from the bubblegum machine. I gave her some change and she returns with a plastic bubble container. She is so excited as she opens it and finds a gold necklace with a gold key charm…..she thinks it is the most gorgeous necklace she has ever seen and immediately puts it on. (I am praying her poor neck doesn't turn green) She is so proud of this necklace and wears it for days until the necklace breaks. All she is left with is the gold key….which she puts in her room with all her other special treasures!

A few weeks later my daughter’s godmother (Aunt CC) calls and says I found something in my washer that belongs to you. (That week I had done a load of laundry at her house) “It looks like some sort of charm.” Charm? I thought and quickly denied that it was ours. “I think it is a gold key,” she said. I wondered,”How did that gold key get into her washer?”.

Well after the call, I forgot about the 50 cent gold key until a few weeks later. I was over at Aunt CC’s and found the gold key lying on a random table in her home. I remember picking up the gold key but don’t really know what I did with it….maybe I put it in my purse, gave it to my daughter….who knows?

Again a few weeks later, my daughter and I are walking out of church to out car and I look down and in the parking lot -- what is staring back at me -- THE GOLD KEY! I could not believe it! How did it get to my church parking lot and how long had it been there? I happened to look down and see it….AMAZING!

OK I finally was getting that there was probably some sort of MESSAGE here!!! (I had a dream a few years ago about a gold key and I could not find it so I wondered it there could be a link?)
I took the gold key home and placed it on top of my computer so I would remember and pursue what was God trying to tell me. It sat on my computer for a month or so until we moved to our new apartment. I thought I had been careful with the gold key….I don't know moving was a blur. When I went to inspect the old apartment one last time….what do you think was on the floor in the middle of the living room -- you guessed it the gold key!

So as I write this, the gold key sits on my computer as a reminder that God speaks to us in many ways, dreams, visions, audible words, songs, rhema words, prophetic words, and (I believe) symbols! And yes I have begun to receive some of the revelation linked to the gold key.


My daughter and I have a game we play a lot in the car. We will listen to the classical radio station and make up stories that go along with the music. The other night she wanted to play and I was tired. When it was my turn to tell a story…….my story was feeble. And she looks at me and says, “that is not a story there was not a suddenly”.

Her statement really struck me and I really pondered it. We love to tell stories and listen to stories –especially about miracles. They always include a “suddenly” which is really God’s miraculous power that breaks into our natural world. These stories are our testimonies! I know we all have them - testimonies of God’s miraculous power and love invading our lives.

I have also included a few verses that capture the “suddenlies” in the Bible:

As they were walking along and talking, suddenly a chariot of fire appeared, drawn by horses of fire. It drove between the two men, separating them, and Elijah was carried by a whirlwind into heaven. II Kings 2:11

The light from the sun was gone. And suddenly, the curtain in the sanctuary of the Temple was torn down the middle. Luke 23:45

Suddenly, there was a sound from heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm, and it filled the house where they were sitting. Acts 2:2

Suddenly, there was a bright light in the cell, and an angel of the Lord stood before Peter. The angel struck him on the side to awaken him and said, “Quick! Get up!” And the chains fell off his wrists. Acts 12:7

Please keep the “suddenlies” coming Lord Jesus…..break into our world today!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Rainbow Days!

Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth." Genesis 9:16