Friday, April 20, 2012

I just finished the most inspirational book, Found Art, discovering the beauty in foreign places by Leeana Tankersley. She is a member of Flood,  my daughter's church in San Diego.  Leeana shares how God touched her life during a year in Bahrain on one beautifully crafted page after another. Oh, I hated putting down her beautiful memoir; I felt like I had found a kindred spirit.

Just to tease you, here are two of my favorite quotes from  Found Art:

"The layers of numbness began dying a slow death that day. In their place sparkled an inkling of desire. And desire, as we all know, is the most scandalous freedom there is."

"Great power resides in a voice that sings for no audience and searches for no approval, and yet owns the depth and breadth and passion it has been given."

Leeana's book was found art for me.

Monday, April 16, 2012

A Stone Well Thrown
It’s 3 a.m. and sleep escapes me again. 
Images of young girls, tucked in filthy brothels instead of snug beds, desecrated by a steady stream of unrestrained men, clutter my mind.  Thoughts of scarred middle school girls climbing into the cabs of parked 18-wheelers interrupt any hope of pleasant dreams.  A glance at the clock reminds me that only a few hours remain before I meet the morning’s demands; yet I know that those held against their will desperately hope for daybreak to end their horror, if only for a brief while.
Human trafficking interrupts!   
It destroys the dreams of people longing to escape poverty.  It robs innocence from young children.  And it messes with my life.
 I can no longer sip on coffee or sneak bites of my favorite chocolate without asking if those beans have been harvested by a fragile six year old slave-child.   I research the supply chain of a company before I buy my cotton shirt, making sure there is no hint of a sweat shop.  I keep a protective eye on customers patronizing nail salons as well as young girls hanging out at the local mall. 
And I interrupt my lazy Saturday to pray in the rain for the rescue of teens trafficked on Interstate 10. 
Human trafficking seems Goliath in proportion to the stones I throw at it, but if I join mine with yours, I believe God, honoring our obedience, will strike down this giant in our lifetime. 
Running from it leaves an individual, not a statistic, without a voice or a hope for the future. 
So what stone will you choose? 
Will you support a mentoring program that protects the vulnerable from becoming another casualty? 
Will you add your name to a petition?  Perhaps your stone will simply tell the real-life stories of victims or offer powerful  prayers for the rescued ones. 
David boldly approached his Goliath in the name of the LORD Almighty.  
With the same confidence, let’s raise our stones!

Monday, April 9, 2012

The morning after Easter...
It's more like New Year's Day for me.
I've seen the Cross once again; I've celebrated the One who has risen indeed.     Now it's time to go and tell, like a woman staring into an empty tomb,
Set forth on a journey that keeps Him alive and brings the hope of the Resurrection to others; resolute to make Him famous once again. 
Just like the birth of spring, I have a chance to bring a fresh approach to my faith walk. 
So what does that journey look like for you?

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

I love Easter Sunday! 
My family rarely went to church while I was growing up, but I always knew we would attend on Easter morning. Weeks of preparation went into that wonderful day.  My mom, an amazing seamstress, would sew frilly dresses and matching coats for my sister and me and we would painstakingly search for perfect hats and shoes to complete our Spring ensemble. Every year the sanctuary, dressed in lilies and stained glass, seemed bigger and more beautiful and "up from the grave He arose" sank deeper into my soul.
I believe it was the happiest hour of my year as I sang and recited and prayed among the floral bonnets and white patent leather shoes.
I was meant to worship!
I remember one Easter I became very ill with a raging infection; my mom broke the news to me that I would be staying home with her while the rest of our family, draped in their finery, pulled out of the driveway. Through my long sobs, I cried, "but I'll have to wait for another year and that is way too long."  
And it was too long...
Too long not to hear the message of  resurrection and victory and hope. 
Too long not to hear organ pipes and choir lofts sing of his majesty.
But once again, that perfect Sunday morning would return and the annual scattering of faith seeds would commence. 
Yes, I was meant to worship!  
And to this day, I can hardly wait for Easter Sunday; to enter his courts and sing to the King! To see the Church shed its winter doldrums and don its finest for the Resurrected Savior.
Oh, Church arise and let the celebration begin!