Sunday, March 7, 2010

Jesus Freak

03-07-10 "Jesus Freak" Man-on-the-Street Segment from CHRIST'S CHURCH OF THE VALLEY on Vimeo.

Our youth pastor, Dan Reischel went out as his alter ego "Rev. Kenny Swagger" to learn more about what it means to be a "Jesus Freak." Hilarious!

Stay tuned for his sermon...

Saturday, February 27, 2010


Saw David Crowder Band in concert yesterday. They were amazing! I love their song Everything Glorious. The lyrics say...

You make everything glorious
And I am Yours
What does that make me?

The definition of glorious in the dictionary says: marked by great beauty or splendor

So yes...if God made everything glorious, and we are His....what does that make us?

A creation marked by great beauty or splendor.

Put that little fact in your pocket** and carry it around with you :)

**note: I guess you could write this truth down and literally put it in your pocket...but when I was referring to pocket I meant more of a figurative "pocket" get the gist ;)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


Read a great article today on

It talks about a woman who decided, during Lent, to "refrain from rushing to explain and defend herself, even when she felt she might not be fully understood." The article said that "this discipline was inspired by the well-known prayer attributed to St. Francis, which includes the line: "O, Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek ... to be understood as to understand."

Let me tell you a secret...

I love to talk.

If you know me, this may not come as a surprise. ;)

Conversation is great, but as I read this article I can think of plenty of times when I've used my words to fill an uncomfortable silence, defend myself, or make sure others know how important I am.


Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry, for man's anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. (James 1:19)

"grant that I may not so much seek ... to be understood as to understand."

For example, when this woman applied the exercise at home she saw how valuable this discipline can be for relationships. Her husband had said something that she would normally take immediate offense to and react rather quickly by defending herself. Instead of saying anything, she remained silent. After a few moments of her "prayerful silence" her husband apologized. "He knew his words had been hurtful, and her silence gave him the chance to reconsider."

I am guilty of the "quick reply." I agree with the article when it says that there are proper times to speak up ("to defend an innocent person, or to speak the truth boldly to people who are deluded by a lie. ") but there are also moments when words may harm the situation rather than alleviate a problem.

The article ends by saying...

In times when prudence says, "be quiet," your silence can be a statement to God, yourself, and even others that you believe God is really in control and will work things out the way HE wants them. It is an act of faith.

I think it's important to reflect on the ways that we respond to others. Are there times when silence would be more valuable? As a chatty gal, this presents a challenge. It seems an important thing to consider, and in the coming weeks I am going to try and do what my good old friend James says...

be quick to listen, slow to speak

Sunday, February 21, 2010


Heard about a really cool organization. Help-Portrait. A photographer started an event by just asking his fellow photographer friends to help him take pictures of people in need. This idea spread so quickly, that it reached places across the world like France, South Korea, Germany, and name a few.

I had the privilege of hearing this man speak today and he said that his main goal in taking these professional (and beautiful, might I add) shots of these people is to help them to realize how very special they are.

Volunteers helped to get these people ready for the photos (clothes, hair, makeup) and then they were treated like stars with their very own photo shoot.

A few stories he shared included a man who had only had his picture taken once...when he went to jail. A man and his son who were separated because of problems with alcohol and drugs were reunited to get a photo together. A single mother and her two children got their very first family portrait.

One person who had their picture taken wrote on the website:

"Receiving a gift is like getting a rare gemstone; any way you look at it you see the beauty refracted." --Proverbs 17:8

The Help-Portrait photographers that showcased their God-given talents at the Nashville Rescue Mission ARE those rare gems. They captured the inner light of many who have felt broken, worthless, unattractive, unloved and under-appreciated"

They are doing another event soon. If you'd like to get involved..check out their website

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Africa Bound!

Africa is getting closer. I can't believe I am going to be there for almost two weeks. I have never been on a missions trip so I am gearing up to go and see what God is planning to do in my heart. I'm sure it's nothing less than amazing....

There are two things I would really like to get out of the trip:

1. To be completely and utterly humbled


2. To show God's love

simple goals...yet I expect amazing and complex outcomes

With that said, I would like to keep updates on what's going on with the trip. Here is my to-do list as of now:

-raise 1,700 more dollars! (little nervous about that one)

-fill a suitcase with t-shirts for my Kenyan friends

-get a passport (ASAP)

-fill a bunch of other suitcases with supplies that my Kenya friends may need

-learn a little Swahili!

As this trip gets closer and closer it's almost impossible to believe that God is giving me this opportunity. I don't think I'll believe it until I've landed in Kenya (cool thing--I had a dream about that very thing happening the other night!)

So..I'll stay updated on that good old to-do list and how my heart is gearing up for this trip.

For now...kwa heri. (goodbye in Swahili)


Thursday, February 18, 2010


Just finished reading a book....A Tale of Three Kings--A Study in Brokenness.

It's a book about King David. Before he himself became king, he worked in the kingdom under King Saul. Apparently, this guy was terrible to him. He was so jealous of David. Eventually, after torturing him physically and mentally David had to flee the kingdom because Saul had decided that he wanted to kill him. The book says:

"David accepted his fate. He embraced the cruel circumstances. He lifted no hand nor offered resistance. Nor did he grandstand his piety. Silently, privately, he bore the crucible of humiliation. Because of this he was deeply wounded. His whole inner being was mutilated. His personality was altered. When the gore was over, David was barely recognizable."

He hid in caves, desperately trying to escape Saul and his soldiers who continued to search for him so that they could kill him. He's at the end of his rope. He is broken beyond belief and without even a friend's shoulder to cry on. But then the book says...

"There in those caves, drowned in the sorrow of his song and in the song of his sorrow, David became the greatest hymn writer and the greatest comforter of broken hearts this world shall ever know."

...God can use our brokenness. Devastating things that happen to us or that we struggle with may have mutilated our inner being, altered our personality or made us barely recognizable.

Maybe that's part of the answer when we are suffering...and we ask God, "Why is this happening to me??"

I think it reminds me that...

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.-Romans 8:28