Friday, September 26, 2008

Just don't expect her to go on a merry-go-round with you.....

Today's my friend Faith's birthday! And we'll just overlook the fact that I was half way through elementary school when she was born, 'k?

Over the past 8-9 years, Faith and Chad have become precious friends to our family. We first met them in our Nearly/Newlywed class at church almost a year before they got married. We went to their wedding barely 2 weeks after Becca was born!

Sept 2008

We've been on mission trips, beach trips, and shopping trips together. And I can't even count the number of South 21 trips!

Faith was the first person I told when I found out I was pregnant with Hayes, besides Daniel of course! Telling her and her reaction is still my favorite memory of that time. She loves on my kids and I look forward to the day that I can return the favor.

August 2008
Faith is a sweet, talented, Godly woman. She's smart and creative and is striving to honor God with her whole life. I just love her and am so blessed to have her in my life.

In Cuba, 2004 (yes Faith has a pony-tail!)

Sept 2007

Happy Birthday, Faith!

"For I know the plans I have for you, Faith," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you, Faith, and not to harm you, plans to give you, Faith, a hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Praising the Lord for a Bible

One of the cool stories from Brazil we told on the ministry blog was about the lady at the library in Ingazeria. Daniel, Sheila, Cheryl, Bonita, Kesia, and I were doing door to door evangelism and honestly, it was very frustrating. We visited 3 different houses and all were older people, very set in their beliefs and not open at all to what we had to share.

As we left the last house a young girl we had met previously found us and asked us to come see her mom. She was working at the public library and wanted us to help her encourage a friend who was a new believer. So we headed over to the library.

When we got there, the friend was already gone so we visited with the girl's mom. She was so excited to see us and was just joyful. She really had the joy of the Lord and it flowed from her. We were chit-chatting and she told us she had a verse she wanted to share with us.

As she looked for it, someone asked if there was a Bible in the library. She said no and so somebody pulled one from their backpack and handed it to her.

THIS was her reaction:

She immediately lifted her hands and started praising the Lord. It was amazing. I was like "give her another one!"

We asked if her daughter had one and when she said no, we gave her one too. That got this reaction:

Well, we just started emptying our backpacks at this point. We ended up giving both daughters a Bible and left one for the new believer friend. We left a few for the library and for her to give to other believers she knew who didn't have one. She told us that Bibles were very expensive there and that people had to share. Even the ones in the library had to be read there, not taken home.
The Portuguese Bibles we bought to give were only about $7! Before we left a friend gave me $20 for Bibles and apologized because "it wasn't much." Well, it basically bought 3 Bibles and changed 3 peoples' lives forever! Don't tell me that's 'not much'!

To see her raise her hands and praise the Lord EVERY time we added to that stack of Bibles was the most moving and emotional display of gratitude I have ever seen. Her first reaction was to praise God! Not us! And thank you Lord for that. Because it wasn't about us. We may have been the bodies actually physically giving her the Bibles, but she knew where the blessing came from and she gave Him glory!

Oh Lord, may I forever be changed by the gratitude I saw that day. How often do I take for granted all that I have and it is ALL from You. And it's all YOURS.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

There's no place like home, there's no place like home.....

I've been sitting here for a few minutes trying to figure out where to start. I told my friend Bonita last night how glad I was that Daniel was with me in Brazil because I'd hate to have to come home and try to tell him all about it. She agreed because her husband went too. It's just so hard to put into words!

To start, you can go to the ministry blog and read our day by day posts from the trip. That was really cool to be able to do. We all contributed stories and highlights and hopefully soon there will be pictures too. I'll have to get on that in the next few days.

First things first the Wendi's!!!! (If you have no idea what I'm talking about and you're saying "who in the world is Wendi and why are there two and why is that a big deal?", then go here to catch up.)

Can I just tell you how awesome it was to see Wendi get hold of that baby for the first time? It was so sweet! Damiana was so excited to see her that she came looking for US! We were actually on our way to her house and she came walking down the street. A few of us went back to her house and visited for a while. We brought baby clothes for her (thanks again Melissa!) and Wendi was thoughtful enough to bring gifts for Damiana and her other daughters. It was an amazing experience!

They had baby Wendi dedicated the next day at the church and they asked Wendi to come up front with the family. Baby Wendi had on a dress Wendi brought that had been her niece's. She looked so sweet. And did I mention she is only 4 months old? Um, yeah. Go back and look at that close up again.
So anyway, there's my first story. Short and sweet. And there are so many more!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I Am From

*originally posted on 4/6/08.

I got this idea from Heth's blog, and I was feeling a little sentimental after spending yesterday with family. So here's my attempt at poetry!

I am from gold shag carpet, from Volvo station wagons and real wood fireplaces.

I am from the beloved ranch house with multiple additions.

From kids playing ball in the yard and learning to ride bikes in the street.

I am from the dogwood trees, the yellow bell bushes “decorated” while we were away.

I am from sledding down the big hill and real Christmas trees.

From brown eyes and bad knees, from Mary and Lindon, Charlie and Toby. I am from football, baseball, and basketball players and from the beach lovers.

From “We’re pulling that tooth on Friday” and “Swing Lo, Sweet Chariot”. I am from Baptists and church on Sundays and Wednesdays and Sunday School teachers and deacons.

I am from walking to church and to friends’ houses.

I'm from South Carolina on a Thanksgiving day, interrupting dinner and holiday plans, from moving home to small town USA.

From barbeque and Coke in a glass bottle. From homemade birthday cakes and parties at Skateland. From the burned bread on holidays, the Christmas Eve open houses, and the trips in the camper to the mountains and the beach.

I am from school pictures on the buffet, all three proudly displayed. From Mimi’s art on the wall, underappreciated until later. From T’s whittlings on the shelves, amazement at the talent of those loving hands.

I'm from laughter and crying, from fighting and making up. From unwavering support and unconditional love.

*Here's the link for the poem format. Try it!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Just a reminder....

Check out the ministry's new blog! Hopefully we'll be posting from the outback!