Archive for March, 2013

Wesleyans in Ohio and Kids in Congo

Monday, March 11th, 2013

Teaching on brokenness at the Wesleyan women's retreat

Speaking and singing at First Covenant Youngstown

The cookies they made for the reception were so sweet! My book is called Life Not Typical and they made these for me. 🙂

This was such a great weekend! Totally exhausting, but so much fun to see God moving!

On Friday and Saturday, I was with the Greater Ohio District of the Wesleyan Church for their women’s retreat. I think there were delegates from over 90 churches there, but it was such a warm and friendly group – it seemed like everyone knew everyone else!

Friday night I did a concert and ministry event, and then Saturday I led worship and taught on “The Art of Godly Brokenness.” It was a very interesting event for me because I’ve taught on brokenness many times before, but I just couldn’t get comfortable with what I had planned. I kept praying over it and praying over it and rearranging it in the two weeks prior. Then suddenly at 5am on Friday morning (and I am not a morning person!) bam! My eyes popped open, and I knew exactly what God wanted me to say. So I wrote for about 7 hours that morning and changed the whole thing. I was so touched by the feedback – one woman told me that she had been stuck for two years and that God gave her exactly what she needed to come out of her “pit” in my talk that morning. He is so good!

Then, we went home and re-packed everything and drove up to Youngstown, getting in around 11. The next morning we went to First Covenant in Youngstown where I gave the sermon and did a little special music. I also gave a concert that afternoon. The whole point of their invitation was to kick off their Covenant Kids Congo with World Vision campaign. I have been a World Vision artist for years, and this is a specific initiative the Evangelical Covenant is doing with World Vision to impact the Congo.

This is not a huge church, and the area is somewhat economically depressed. Statistically, I would have expected to get 12 or maybe 15 kids sponsored this weekend. I had brought 30 with me. Would you believe my surprise when we ran out of kids and actually had people signing up to wait for more? We ended up sponsoring 34 kids out of that church – I was so touched! And the pastor had tears in his eyes, he was so moved by the response of his people. So, way to go, Youngstown Covenant!

Two totally special and wonderful groups, and what a blessing for me! I came home totally exhausted, but also completely excited by all the ways God was moving this weekend. Sometimes I can’t believe that I get to do this, and meet and work with the people I do. Pretty incredible.

Encounter church and 1st at States!

Saturday, March 2nd, 2013

My daughter shooting - in the middle in the blue shirt with the bun

Their team takes #1!

Speaking at the event for Encounter Church

Fun weekend, this. On Friday, I spent pretty much the whole day at Vets Memorial downtown (Columbus, that is) where they were holding the state tournament for archery. Little disconcerting to be in a room with that many armed children. My daughter’s team made it in, and then, drumroll, please – won the whole thing! Yeppers, we were first in the State! And, the part that was completely hilarious to me was that they made the tournament part of the Arnold Classic. You know, that humongous bodybuilding competition that descends on Columbus every year headed up by none other than Mr Universe/Governor Ah-nold himself. There are people all over Columbus for the entire weekend who are physically unable to put their arms down. Pretty fun people watching to be sure. And my daughter was in this competition, so that means that officially, my little 60 some pound pumpkin not only has deadly aim, but has also competed in the Arnold Classic! She will never live that down.

AND, not just that, but Arnold himself came to the awards ceremony, and despite 6 bodyguards in front and 6 in back (and I ask you – who do you get for a bodyguard who can look remotely threatening at the Arnold Classic?!) she still managed to touch him. Yep. Apparently that was her goal. We are so proud. And glad she wasn’t arrested. So much for his bodyguards, eh?

Then Saturday morning, for something completely different, I did a women’s ministry event for Encounter Church in Dublin, OH. They are a relatively new church plant, and growing quickly and doing some really amazing things for God! I did a ministry presentation, and we had such great feedback – people wanting more information on how to have a relationship with Jesus, and even one woman who was coming out of a hard lifestyle situation telling us that God had answered her questions personally through my ministry. She was so touched that God cared enough to answer her specific questions. It was a really moving day – thanks for having me!