I am home! I had a BLAST at the Women's Conference this weekend! I got to go with my awesome girlfriends, mom & sister! This was my first year to attend this conference in Napa and it was a gorgeous place! I saw rolling hills, vineyards and hot air balloons! I'd love to visit this place again!
I enjoyed all the sermons and the sessions we took! I got to know some wonderful speakers and hear their testimonies. We laughed and we shared some tears. We also went to Starbucks.. a lot. I almost had a coffee overdose :P
I also sought God in deeper matters that I was dealing with in my life right now. He reaffirmed all my decisions. He reassured me with new hope, and gave me a renewed trust in him. I feel more confident in God's will. The trip was well worth it.
I also love what Miss Jocelyn wrote on Facebook recently, "I know that the LORD holds my future in the PALM of His HAND!!!!! Go ahead satan try to get it, have you seen His hand??? Ha!" Amen to that!!
I also missed my babies!! I got to wrestle with them for an hour before bedtime and give them kissy-kissies! Brady even helped me kiss HIS OWN arms too, isn't that cute?? Landon bashfully told me he missed me and blushed! Lol. It's good to be home!! ♥
And I'm looking forward to next year girls! I hope more of you will decide to join us too!!
And Martha.. NO SUGARFREE CANDIES! You know what I'm talking about Missy!
I realized that today is what the Catholic church calls "Ash Wednesday" and the practicing Catholics abstain from meat today and every Friday until Easter. I will let the scripture speak for itself. You can find what God says about this practice in 1 Timothy 4:1-4:
"Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;
Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;
Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth.
For every creature of God is good, and nothing to be refused, if it be received with thanksgiving." 1 Timothy 4:1-4
The practice of abstaining from meat and even the priesthood and nuns that say they must take a vow to remain single without ever being married is not agreed with in the Word of God. This scripture warns of the latter days, which we see now, that people will fall away from the truth and give in to false doctrines "doctrines of devils." God created marriage and meat for us and it is good. It should not be refused or forbidden. This is NOT the doctrine of God.
Know thy Bible.
March is a deaf history awareness month. I was asked by Growing in Grace Magazine to write an article about deaf history and I will post the link as soon as it is published! I wrote the article about the background of the deafness and called it "The Silent History of Deafness." Then, I thought that I would also write an article about my personal experience of deafness more in depth here for all of you.
Well, I was born deaf in a deaf family due to the hereditary gene called Connexin 26. It is a huge blessing to be born in a deaf family because most deaf people are the only ones in their family. It is my 'normal' and I wouldn't change it if I had the chance to. I strongly believe God chose me to become deaf for a reason, and I embrace that. I also stand by the verse on Exodus 4:11 about how God created different kinds of people, including deaf people.
I did have hard times growing up, especially with my peers as kids. You know how cruel kids can be in school and all that. But as I grew up, I became more secure in my identity and I'm happy for who I am. The worst part about being deaf is when people act differently around you. That's the biggest thing. We are just so normal and just regular ol' people like you guys are. Most of us have had our rabies shot,... kidding!
Many people ask me what I can hear. I can hear a lot of things with my hearing aids but I am not able to distinguish what I am hearing very well. It's a mess of sound all combined to me. I have to use my eyes a lot and pay attention to the movement of lips, body language and facial expressions to know what's going on. Without hearing aids, I'll only be able to hear a firetruck if it was in my room. Believe it or not, it's a luxury at times! It's also a proven fact that deaf people can sleep deeper than hearing people!
Turning up the volume on the television or radio won't do anything. It'll just be a louder mess of sounds. Everything sounds Spanish to me. I can hear people talking, but it's all foreign language to me. My sister always made fun of me for having the radio on the Spanish station growing up.
We get sweet deals being deaf. For instance, we can talk with our mouths full, talk across the room, underwater and behind everyone's backs (no, joking!! lol). If we have headaches, we can just turn off our hearing aids within convenience. Most of the time, if we get pulled over by a cop, we can just point to our ears and sign "I am deaf" and the cops will suddenly feel uncomfortable and let us go! It's true!! lol.
Deafness is also a beautiful culture. It's the only culture that has emerged from a disability. I wrote about it on the article in GGM about how language, technology, history and all these factors brought forth a culture in deafness. I grew up in both worlds: the hearing and deaf world. I grew up in a deaf family, have been around deaf people all my life and went to a hearing mainstream school. In my personal experience, it is good to have the best of both worlds. My youngest son is also deaf and I will instill that in him. I want him to have the best of both worlds too.
I also wrote that disability is a state of mind. Whatever body God puts us in, we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us. I have seen people prove the impossible every day in the world and don't let that stop you from anything. God even used people in the Bible with a physical struggle, such as Moses with his speech impediment. We have a powerful God whose strength is made perfect in our weakness. Have faith in God because he has faith in you.
If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment or email me anytime. I won't be offended, but I'll be delighted to share with you!
Here's a fun fingerspelling guide for those who are interested in learning the basics!
Labels: Good 2 Know
I have been praying this week, harder than I ever have in my life. God has brought me to the point of total submission unto him. I didn't realize it before but now I realize that my heart was hardened about some things. The Lord has softened my heart and then he was able to lead me to what he wanted me to do for him.
The answer is clear to me and it is something beyond shocking for me. I just can't speak, eat or think about anything else but this. I did something that I never thought I would do yesterday. Today, I drove up in the mountains alone for hours and prayed.
I will write about what happened very soon, and all I ask right now is your prayers for God to bless the decision I made for him. I want his will done, not mine, and even if that means doing something that scares the heck out of me. Please pray about this situation I am facing.
I call out your name
Bring me to my knees
It's you that I need
This storm I must face
But I will not go through it alone
You'll hold my hand Lord
And let me rest under your sheltering arms
Hold the umbrella for me
And bring on the rain
Bring on the pain
Everything life throws at me
You've taken it upon yourself
You've let the hail
Fall on your shoulders
to keep me dry
When I cry
Your wings encompass over me
A shelter from the storm
Life is thundering all around
But nothing gets to me
Unless it's been through you first
Nothing gets to me
Unless it's been through you first
Labels: Poetry and Songs
I wanted to link to my friend's blog so you guys can read the amazing article by Chuck Baldwin (the baptist pastor who ran for president this recent election!) Chuck wrote an inspiring one and I encourage you all to visit his blog to read the full article called "Christians use Prophecy to excuse laziness" & the link, CLICK HERE !
There is a disturbing fact out there right now. Our churches have changed. There is no argument that our churches in America now days have become the prophetic Church of the Laodiceans. It is the last church spoken of by Revelation.
Are you in that church? Do you walk out of church the same way as you entered in without any change within? Was God's Word and his law from the Bible preached, or was it changed to entertaining subjects? Is there a band with contemporary music, maybe with light shows, dry ice, or flashy things, that seems to take up the majority of the church time? Is the music time twice longer than the sermon? Is your church afraid to offend anybody to preach about the convictions of the Bible? Does your church take a stand and speak out against the wrongs? Do you walk in and out, then say "I went to church and I did my part, happy now God?"
Maybe it's time to start noticing what's really going on.
The Church of the Laodiceans are the lukewarm churches we see everywhere right now.
"I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot." Revelation 3:15
And being lukewarm is an abomination to the Lord. He vomits it out of his mouth. How can we be lukewarm about God, his salvation, gift of eternity shed through his blood, and all of these battles in the spiritual war against the flesh.
"So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth." Revelation 3:16
The churches have everything they want. They're well off, living the good life, and they have it all. They don't really need God anymore, since they have everything. They tell God, "hey, we've got it covered here, we're doing pretty good and don't really need you anymore." But if only they realize it.. they're actually the ones who need God the most. They are poor in the worst way spiritually, a stark contrast of the church of Smyrna who were materially poor, but the Bible calls them rich.
"Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked" Revelation 3:17
But where is God? Revelations tell us that he's outside of the church, knocking and knocking, saying "who will let me enter so that I may sup and dine with him?" Everybody's too busy and getting along without him. Who can stop, pause and hear the knocking? Who could that be? The Savior? What is he doing outside?
"Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me." Revelations 3:20
Jesus should be inside the church. Jesus should be the center of everything. Jesus should have the highest seat in the room, leading the pulpit, and holding everything together. But the churches are just carrying on without him.
Also notice this key word:
"And unto the angel OF the church of the Laodiceans write..." Revelation 3:14
The other churches all refer to the Angel IN the church, but the Laodiceans' Angel is only OF the church, but not inside the church. Is God of the church, a theme in the church, maybe a name on the sign outside, but not inside the church? Even churches everywhere are changing their names into a generic name: "Community Church," "the Vineyard church," etc.
And people are calling themselves Christians as a status. They say they are a "member of this or that church," were raised in a Christian home, were baptized as a child, and so forth. Christianity is not a status, or a membership of a church, or because your parents were Christians.. those won't do anything for anybody.
"He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches." Revelation 3:22
We need to take notice and pay attention. What is God trying to tell us? What does God want for us?
"As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent." Revelation 3:19
We need repentance. We need to be held accountable. We need to be convicted. We need to change and get better. We need God in the center of our lives. We need to go to the right church, the kind that isn't afraid to speak out God's Word and his laws, to rebuke and exhort one another, and to help us grow. We must. The time is at hand. Don't be caught in the wrong church going nowhere.
I have been notified that Blogger's reader list isn't updating my new posts. There is some kind of problem with my feed. If you're following me, you probably aren't being notified of new posts. I don't know how to fix that and I've been asking around too. The only solution I can think of is to put in a subscriber list (on the top right panel of my blog). It will email you a notification that there has been a new post. So, if you would like to subscribe, just type down your email address on the white bar and enter!
And Miss Moni made these cute graphics for me! Isn't she talented?? :)
Some of you may see that you are being followed twice by me! I changed the Admin authors to my other email address and deleted my first profile. You might see two of me, although the first one should have been deleted. It's under a different account and my sister helped me to do it without moving the entire blog!
I also realized I had lost whom I had been following. If you notice that I am not following you, please let me know and give me your URL! I'll fix that mistake quickly!! :)
I am taking a Personal Evangelism class through my church. It is an extended bible college program and I go there every Tuesday night. My pastor teaches this one, and last night he taught us this: How to Lead a Child to Christ. Of course, I whipped out my pen and wrote it down! I thought it'd be interesting to share with all of you!
1. You must be on their level (physically, mentally, spiritually)
Get down on your knees, be at their eye level (kids love that). Excite them and ask who is the smartest, who knows all this stuff, etc.
2. Use Much Repetition (over & over & over).
When you go over a step, stop, then review all the steps before that then move to the next one every time. The Bible says that faith comes by hearing the Word of God.
3. Use visual aides!
We can get creative with this! Draw pictures! Use diagrams!
My pastor drew a picture of everyone on a plane with sin spots all over them heading towards the fire, but Jesus got them tickets to go to heaven and now they're happy!
The Wordless book is a popular method too and it's just a book of colors! The colors each represent something, and it's very simple! SisterLisa decided to use M&M colors for an extra treat!
Growing in Grace Magazine has the Wordless book online, CLICK HERE to go there!
Right now, my kids are fairly young and I would say they are too young to grasp the entire concept of salvation. If your kids are young too, we can still teach our kids about sin whenever they do wrong. We can remind them when they lie, when they steal cookies, when they hit their siblings, rebel against us, etc that it is what the Bible calls sin. This can prepare them to realize they have sinned many times and it will be easier to lead them to realize they need a Savior.
"I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth." 3 John 1:4
Labels: Good 2 Know
There is a giveaway of an amazing book called, "The Love Dare" that many of you may already know from the movie "Fireproof!" SisterLisa loaned me the movie and I watched it last night. I laughed and I cried! It is a beautiful movie and I already can see it is filled with valuable insights to help the MAJORITY of marriages nowadays. If you haven't seen the movie, GO rent it now!! And don't forget to enter for the giveaway!!
Check out GGM Magazine's Article about the Giveaway & the Love Dare! CLICK HERE
And it's the Anniversary Edition on Growing in Grace Magazine and come and see the sweet cover of SisterLisa and Jacque Dixon together! I am amazed at how hard these ladies work on this magazine and it is an unbelievably wonderful magazine for young girls! We need magazines like these on the stands everywhere and not the current teen magazines with bulimic models that have sexual advice and worldly living splattered all over it. If I had a daughter, I'd want her to be reading this magazine.