Friday, April 30, 2010

1 Million Shirts

Check out Lee's new Blog post... I'm getting ridiculously excited about this mission project (it involves Africa, of course I love it), maybe you should get involved too.

Under the Mercy

Big News...

...that makes me smile real big.

It's official.

I'm going on a summer internship program with Dugout Media Baseball Youth Roadtrip. It's for the entire summer from Memorial Day (or sooner) until August 24th, at which time I'll join classes already in progress at Murray State University.

The internship is for writing and marketing experience as well as public relations and some sales. My major is journalism with a minor in marketing.

This is a God thing.

A big God thing.

The eight of us on a tour will be touring the country following Little League Baseball. Little boys 7-13 years old who love the game. I'm beyond excited. All expenses (travel, lodging, food, laundry, etc.) paid and in addition to that we'll receive a salary. 

I'm asking to be placed on the East Tour, but there is a chance I'll be on the West Tour.
East Tour stops:
Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, Kentucky, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, New York, Massachusetts, Ohio, Pennsylvania.

West Tour stops: California, Texas, Oregon, Nevada, Arizona, Utah, New Mexico, Colorado, Wyoming, Kansas, Nebraska.

Some of the sponsors of the Roadtrip include ...
  • Major League Baseball Players Association
  • Disney Channel (Disney XD)
  • Topps / Topps Attax
  • Activision / Little League Baseball World Series 2010
  • Louisville Slugger
  • Atari / Backyard Sports Sandlot
  • Fathead
  • MLB Network
  • Majestic
  • New Era
  • Major League Baseball teams
(We will be able to say we were employed by each of these sponsors on our resume's. Um, yes. God thing)
 This experience and mega-huge opportunity is something that God literally dumped in my lap, it is something that I never dreamed would happen (I didn't even know about it...) and yet, here I am planning my summer around this fantastic adventure.

Things I'll miss...
  • My family. Duh. But seriously, three months is a long time. I've never been away that long, and especially from my little baby nephew that I adore with all of my insides.
  • C & C. [Coffee & Conversation... this happens almost every morning with my sister, her husband and the baby (the baby doesn't drink coffee, don't worry)]
  • My church family.(I will be keeping up with the sermons thanks to the podcasts available here, but I'll still miss the fellowship).
  • Chiropractic adjustments.
  • Singing at church.
  • Waking up to notes from my dad.
  • My bed.
  • My shower.
  • Shooting.
  • Watching the Cardinals with my parents.
  • Father's Day.
  • Daddy's Birthday.
  • Isaac's Birthday.
  • Whitty's Birthday.
  • A bunch of weddings. 
  • A ton of things that haven't hit me yet.

Prayer Requests...

  • First and foremost that God would protect us (physically, emotionally, spiritually).
  • That He will use this time to minister to me and through me to others. This is a mission experience even if I'm not going to Africa.
  • A laptop with a big HD. I'll be taking three online classes this summer while we're on the tour in order to graduate from the community college and go to Murray in the fall, a laptop is a necessity.
  • That the people on the tour will be "good" people, and that there would be at least one true believer.
  • That the online classes will go smoothly and that balance between work, school and free time will come easily.
  • Not related to the internship but a prayer request nonetheless, that God will supply the finances for fall tuition (and every semester thereafter) at Murray. I know God wants me there so I know He will provide the means to make it happen. He never fails.
  • Also related to finances in the fall, I pray that God would give me a good job that will work around school/newspaper.

Writing it all out makes it feel so much more official, and my excitement increases by the second. I'm so thankful for this opportunity from my heavenly Father whose ways are higher than mine, and whose thoughts are not my own... they are so much better. Thank You, God!


Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Awesome, terrifying, powerful...

That's my God.

You must click this link and look at this crazy awesome picture. Is our God huge? Is He in control of everything? Does He have power over the entire Universe, weather and all? Yes, yes and yes.

"The heavens declare the glory of God, the skies proclaim the works of His hands." -Psalm 19:1

Click Here

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Heart Burn

I really want to experience heart burn.

Not the acid reflux kind, but the kind where God, the consuming fire, lights up my heart with a burning desire to live out what I say I believe. I want my life to reflect the Son and show His magnitude and majesty, after all I am a living, breathing example of His grace and unfailing love. As are you if you've been changed from the inside out. So, I'm praying for heart burn. If I want the world to be on fire for God then I first must be lit by the Light of Love. I want to make the Consuming Fire famous. How about you? What/who are you making famous?

God, set my heart ablaze with a passion for Your name,
I want to go to the world and spread Your fame.
The hurting, the broken, the unloved,
I want to love them the way You love me,
Unconditionally, no exceptions, no fine print,
Just love unashamed.
But first, set my heart on fire for Your name.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

I am here on purpose

For a purpose. God's purpose.

"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.
 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth—in Him. In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory." -Ephesians 1:3-12

I am not an accident. I am:

Chosen. Predestined. Adopted. Redeemed. Forgiven. Purposed. Blessed. Loved.

Friday, April 9, 2010

My day of barefootedness

First off, new word in the title. I love new words. 

Okay, so One Day Without Shoes, raising awareness of all the children and people of the world forced to live without shoes every day, was quite interesting. 

Details of the day:

I walked with my sister on our regular two mile route with shoes (I know, I know, I should have toughed it out, but alas, I did not).

Came home, wrote a speech, took out the trash and wheeled the garbage can to the end of the driveway. 
    This was the first and most painful moment of the day, primarily because my feet were super cold but not cold enough to be numb to the sharp rocks, puddles, and mud that covers our driveway. But incase you were wondering, I survived. 

Met my sister and her kiddos for lunch at Fazolis. First barefoot experience in public since I was a baby and it was cute to be barefoot. No one said anything. It was 12:30 and the restaurant was packed, but no one said a word about the absence of my shoes. 

Went to the mall. Walked through several stores, most people just stared at my feet and then looked at me. When they saw I was watching them stare (I guess that means I was staring too, doesn't it?) they quickly averted their eyes and I continued on with my business. 
    At one store this worker noticed I was barefoot upon my entry to the store then proceeded to treat me as if I was mentally... challenged. He came over, put one hand on my back and one hand on my arm, and looking at me as if he was talking to a two year old asked if I was alright and needed any help. It was as if he was saying "You left a significant part of your outfit off, and I'm worried for your sanity." I was amused. Still am, actually.

Then I went to work. There wasn't anything out of the ordinary there, however, because I typically roam the office sans shoes. 

While I was at the office trending #hardwithoutshoes on Twitter, I saw a picture of a girl with "hard without shoes" written on the bottom of her feet and felt inspired to write it on the top of mine. I just wish I would have thought to do this before I went trekking through places of public interaction. Oh well.

Then I went to rehearsal (South Pacific. WKCTCS. April 23-25. Be there.), where it is mandatory you wear shoes. So I donned my Nikes and obeyed the rules. 

After rehearsal Lana and I went back to the mall (this time with our feet proudly proclaiming "It's hard without shoes") and I returned the shirt I bought today. We also perused several stores and finally someone asked us "what is up with the barefeet?"! I was so excited that someone finally asked instead of just staring and keeping their curiousity pent up like biscuits waiting to explode from the tube. I was also thrilled to tell her about the cause. 

Went to Walgreens and Sonic with Missy. Sonic doesn't really count since we stayed in the car, but this is listed under "details" so details I will give. 

Went to Krogers with her, which had a sign "No shoes, no service." Because of this, I was almost beside myself with glee going into the store without shoes. It was my one moment of rebelliousness and I rather enjoyed it (what does that say about my nature? Jeremiah 17:9). I wanted to see if they would enforce the rules... they did not. We walked all over the store and nothing was said. Not one thing. Humph. I really wanted them to say something, ask me to leave, ask why I was barefoot- something, but no. 

Now I am showered and my feet are slathered with thick and creamy lotion. They are sore and tired, but it was definitely eye-opening. People live like this all the time. Babies learn to walk without shoes and some of them die without ever wearing a pair. 

How much I take for granted.

I walked through oil, water, mud, hair gel (Krogers), Coke (Krogers), rocks, pot holes, cigarette butts (, and more... things that are not out of the ordinary but I never pay attention to because my feet are always protected. 

Some people might say this was a stupid exercise because it didn't really make a difference for the shoeless kids of the world. Well, whether or not it did or didn't, it made me realize once again, in a whole new way, just how blessed I am. 

The day is over and my feet are clean, resting with lotion beginning to soften up again, and tomorrow I'll put my shoes on like always. Those kids are not so fortunate- they don't just do this for one day... this is their life. Sure, they're used to it, but that should fuel my thankfulness and appreciate for what God has blessed me with. 

One thing I know for sure, when I go to Africa tons of shoes are going with me and aren't coming back.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Little black hearts, big black hearts... we're all sinners.

Driving home from work today, I pass a car, glance over and there is what appears to be a 5 or 6 year old with his face plastered against the window... flipping me off. I must also mention that he is unbuckled and in a very unsafe position, kneeling on the backseat of the car. This broke my heart. Not because of his safety, or because his little hand gesture offended me, but because this reflects the direction the world is going. This is our future.

This kid was little. A little boy that was the same age as some of the kids in the Mother's Day Out program where I teach. He had to learn that. Where did he learn it? Parents, school, television? This is the kind of things kids are learning, with or without their parents' consent. My heart is completely broken over the reminder that parents, for the most part, aren't being the parents God has called them to be. Discipline, Biblical discipline, has gone out the window, more parents need to use (watch out, I'm about to say the S-word....) spanking as their discipline and less of the I'll-be-your-friend-and-coddle-you-through-life philosophy that is so prevalent in today's society.

Basically my little rant here comes back to the same thing: people need to be saved. And I'm mad because sinners are acting like sinners, and that is just stupid.

My intent wasn't to point fingers or judge people, but little kids have always had my heart and to see them being raised in such sinful environments, watching who knows what on television, and then being subjected to so much corruption in the school systems is devastating to me.

I'm spending a lot of time on my knees tonight praying for the children of the world, their parents, and their souls. As well as praying to recognize what I can do to minister to the unsaved and show them a reflection of Jesus' love and compassion.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Barefoot so they don't have to be

Well, I've decided to do it.

I've been contemplating it for awhile and today I've made the commitment.

I'll go barefoot on April 8th and join the One Day Without Shoes by TOMS, raising awareness for the millions of barefoot babies, parents, and children all over the world.

So when I go to work on Thursday, April 8th, I'll be barefoot. I won't be able to go barefoot that night because of the rules in the theater where rehearsal for South Pacific is held (shameless plug... everyone around the Paducah area- come watch us, you'll be in for a treat!), but the rest of the day, consider me barefoot.

How often to I pull out a pair of my bazillion shoes and slip them on without even thinking about the ones who don't have any shoes? Um, everyday. This is a day we can go barefoot and have an opportunity to tell people why we're doing it and how we can make a difference in the lives of the shoeless.

True Love

Come close listen to the story
About a love more faithful than the morning
The Father gave His only Son just to save us

The earth was shaking in the dark
All creation felt the Father's broken heart
Tears were filling heaven's eyes
The day that true Love died, the day that true Love died
When blood and water hit the ground
Walls we couldn't move came crashing down
We were free and made alive
The day the true love died, the day that true love died

Search your hearts you know you can't deny it
Lose your life just so you can find it
The Father gave His only son just to save us

Jesus is alive
He rose again!

-Phil Wickham


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