Friday, July 29, 2011

Since We've Been Gone...

A LOT has happened.
I mean, a lot.

When last I wrote, we were preparing for a weekend worship seminar with our friends
Worship pastors Marty and Amy Gonzales:

It went awesome.
The entire weekend was amazing.
I taught two workshops the Saturday morning, one of which was a songwriting session. They wrote a song, "Heaven Is Falling." I loooved being part of the process as God poured through their worship team. We introduced the song during the Saturday night worship service, and then again to their church body on Sunday morning. The entire church really embraced the song.
God spoke the entire weekend. Not just during the services, which were refreshing and real. We were ready to hear what the Holy Spirit wanted to say. And He spoke.
We can't wait to go back.

Before leaving for Tulsa we took a couple days to see the Colorado Rocky Mountains...

Can I just say...WOW.

Ellie enjoying the view.

A lake. A beautiful, pristine, clear, probably freezing, lake.
Again. WOW.

Biker Man and Drummer Boy.

Ellie made a snowball. A snowball. In July.

Ellie also took this well composed photograph of Biker Man and myself.

We saw elk.

Up close.

Of course, Biker Man bemoaned the fact that we had obviously arranged a Colorado trip at the wrong time of year. He loves to hunt, and was understandably bitter the remainder of the afternoon.

Our smiles prove we had no idea that in two days we would be in 106 degree heat.
Which is another blog.

Friday, July 15, 2011


Tonight, I'm speaking to the worship team at Dakota Ridge Assembly in Littleton, Colorado.
I'm super excited.
I'm talking to them about being a worshiper of valor.

The same root word we get the word value from.
Our value is linked to the valor, or courage we walk in.
The moment we perceive our worth, we can walk in a confidence and boldness unknown to us before, because our worth is in the eye of our Beholder.

It's kind of like Antiques Roadshow.
Have you ever watched that program?
Biker Man and I love to see the reaction people have to the (what we think is) junk that they bring to be appraised.
Why does it turn out to be worth so much?
Because someone (many times, a collector with waaay too much time on their hands) finds it extremely valuable.
Well, God found you to be so valuable, He sent His Son to earth to take your place in death so you could be raised to new life with Him.

Humbling, isn't it?
Makes you want to walk worthy of your calling, be it music, teaching, parenting, pastoring, cleaning, serving homeless, feeding the hungry... generally living out this life we were created to worship God with.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Thoughts From The Road

Well, we're on the road.

As we make our way through Tulsa tonight, and into Colorado tomorrow, this is pretty much my view in the car:

I took this with my phone while we were driving. Obviously.

This picture reminded me of something my Dad preached.
"As we travel on this journey, pursuing the will of God, and obeying His call, His blessings will overtake us. It may look like the destination is taking a long time, but if you look in your rearview mirror, you'll see that God's blessings are closer than they appear."

What a wonderful promise.

"And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you if you heed the voice of the Lord your God." (Deuteronomy 28:2)

Thanks for the reminder, Dad.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011


Here are the promised pictures from the chapel at Mercy Ministries in Nashville.
It was an incredible time in the presence of God.
I was honored to be a part of what Jesus is doing in the lives of these amazing women.

Singing a song over the girls.

Teaching on worship, our worth and "worth-ship"-- we worship God because He is worthy, not based on our cirsumstances.
Then we opened it up for a Q & A session, and that's when it got really good.

We had a time at the end for the girls to talk and pray with me individually.
I stayed to eat lunch with them, then it was time to go.
I can't wait to go back.
God is without a doubt working in this wonderful place.
God is using Nancy Alcorn and every leader at Mercy Ministries to bring about change for His purpose and plan in the hearts and lives of these brave ladies.

Only Jesus can make the difference.

Monday, July 11, 2011


Do you like it?

I finished today, and gave it to Emily for our friend, Dottie.
All the writing is part of the poem I mentioned two posts ago.

We leave Wednesday for another two weeks. Yay!
This time, up to Colorado and down through Tulsa, Oklahoma. 'Twill be grand. I shall try and do better at finding WiFi for posting updates as we minister. Thank you all for your prayers and kind thoughts.

Drummer Boy just wandered in here with purple marker covering his arm.
"Ellie drawed on me," he flatly announced.
I'm not sure what to make of it. It has no form or design, just a straight line. This indicates no artistic endeavor on her part, just boredom. Plain and simple. Sometimes I think she takes her liberty as eldest sibling a bit far. But Drummer Boy doesn't seem to mind. Already he has charged out of my room, morphing seamlessly from a little boy into a superhero (defending his own honor) shooting lasers at the big sister who, in all actuality, is his superhero.
He holds no grudges.

Drummer Boy has returned, after locking both doors to outside.
"Today, is a peaceful day. Ellie is locked outside, and can't torture me. Will she knock down the door with dad's jackhammer? Will she kill me when she finds me? I better go outside and see what awaits me there," he monologues, leaving again.

I better go cook dinner before this escalates any further. Food solves everything. Seriously. The prospect of dinner will have my children behaving in a much more civilized manner.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Sparkler Fun

I experimented a bit with the ISO settings on my Nikon.

Here are the results.

I think it still needs some work, but it was so much fun.

Mainly because of the subjects.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Home For A Whole Week!

Yep, the title says it all!

We're home to do laundry, finish up school, and catch our breath before embarking yet again on another two weeks of singing, loving on folks, and just enjoying the presence of God with other members of His family!

I am so proud of Ellie. Once we realized she had fallen behind in Math due to unforeseen band practices earlier this year, she made up her mind to finish before the second leg of our summer journey. Once home, she proceeded to do eight lessons a day in Math. With each lesson containing at least twenty questions, plus tutorials, the total per day was....well, I'll let you do the Math. I'm tired.

Needless to say, we are working on everything we didn't finish before we left in June, mainly the extra room, which is almost done!!! Yes!!

My dear friend, Emily commissioned me to do a painting for a friend of hers, with excerpts from a poem written for her friend's son, who is autistic. I based the painting around the theme of the poem: God created the stars, one was struggling to keep up with the other stars in the sky, so God found a home where it would be nurtured.
At first, I thought the bird represented how the star came to be home, but the more I worked on it, I saw the bird representing this amazing woman raising her son amid doctors' reports, the day to day frustrations, and incredible obstacles, but finding a way to keep her star in the sky, not allowing him to fall. On her tail feathers hangs a lantern, lighting the way for the rest of us to find inspiration and wisdom from her journey.

I will post a picture of the finished painting soon.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

In Tennessee

We had a wonderful time in Tennessee. Here are some highlights of our time in Greeneville. We spent time with my dear friend, Jennifer Hillman, and her incredibly talented husband, Pastor Scott. Their church, River of Praise AG, was amazing. We arrived a couple days early to reconnect with our friends (I hadn't seen them in 17 years!). The tour around Greeneville became a history lesson for Ellie and Drummer Boy. And their parents as well.

Ellie girl with her new friends, Abbie and Mrs. Jennifer Hillman. We went to the Andrew Johnson Museum. Ellie is in period dress, part of the educational exhibit.

I think the stovepipe hat should make a comeback. At least on this kid. He can pull it off.

"Oh no! We're stuck in jail! Let us out!!!"

Enjoying the springtime feeling of almost zero humidity. Really.

A cannon ball lodged in this brick wall since the Civil War. Amazing.

Pastor Scott and Jennifer Hillman. Two of the most incredible people ever called into ministry.

Drummer Boy at Andrew Johnson's family grave site.

Biker Man and Drummer Boy studying history.

The service that Wednesday night was anointed, powerful, and had no time constraints.
We started at 7pm, and when Biker Man glanced at the clock a few minutes later, it was actually 9:20pm. We got so lost in the presence of God, that nothing else mattered. Pastor Scott sang and played guitar with me. And blew me away with his God-given abilities. Plural. Because he made that guitar sing beyond what I've thought humanly possible.

After altar time, and praying over needs, people meeting with Jesus on a more intimate level, it was time to leave. Around 11pm. (We had to get on the road and drive four and a half hours to Nashville. So I could be at Mercy Ministries the next morning. At nine. I'll post pictures of the chapel at Mercy in another post.)
I leave you with this picture of Jennifer and me at the close of the night at River of Praise.