Saturday, June 14, 2008

Open Communication. Real Talk.

Today I am expressing gratitude and thankfulness. Yesterday from start to finish was full of open communication and real talk with various individuals. Some - I have known for years; others have only known by sight and the casual "hello"...

There's an older woman in my life's moments. I had the opportunity to talk with her on the phone and then to actually see her in person. We tease each other and yet, when the conversation goes deeper - there is real encouragement between us. We do not always see eye to eye. And that is more than okay. I am thankful for her just the same.

A certain man and I got to spend some quality time talking while he was waiting for others to arrive at the physical church building for Healthy Kids. This man shared with me how much he still misses my dad every single day. He shared stories about watching dad when he did not know he was looking. He shared about dad's kindness... a type of kindness that comes from God and not any one person themselves. This man spent numerous hours with me in waiting rooms while dad was in the hospital the last couple months of his moments here.. And yesterday, he listened as this silly woman shared with him about her passion bucket and various others things going on in life and living. And he could not have been of any more encouragement. I pray I was to him as well. I am thankful for him.

Last night we were hanging out at G-town's pool. As I walked around talking with various individuals about their moments... I noticed one woman sitting by herself and walked over and sat down with her. She is one whom I've only known by sight.. and the casual "hello"... That's now history.

This woman shared with me about a girl who was in the pool. Her story made my chin drop. And if you've ever heard me share some of the stories I can personally share - that's saying a lot... I was moved to tears. As we were talking - the girl kept going in and out of the pool and coming over to us. Her smile was radiant. As she purposefully got me wet - her laughter was sheer gold. I wish I could have bottled it to pour out on others.

There is much to be said for general chit chat.. And yet, nothing beats open communication and real talk.

How long has it been since you've pulled up a chair?

or made that phone call?

sent that email?

May God's kindness flow in today's moments.

May it cause others to see The One and Only Hope.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Missionaries Report... Austin & Travis

This is the first of several reports we hope to share here on Life in the Moments.

Austin and Travis could not stop talking last night about all they experienced and witnessed and had the privilege and blessing of being a part of this week. They laughed, got teary eyed, sang us songs, and told story after story. I wish now I had been videotaping.... They were beyond inspiring... and inspired...

The G family would like to thank all who have been praying for them while they've been gone.

Talk about your passion buckets! We're thankful to not only be their parents but their brother and sister in Christ.

Sharing God's love is as simple as making peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

Stay tuned for more reports!

How can you serve someone today? this moment?

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Mission Home Policies

Our local church body has a newly built Mission Home.

If you or a church body you are connected to has a Mission Home with policies in place regarding it - we would greatly appreciate your help.

As a growing church seeking to be of aid to those in need of a respite - policies are definitely needed now.

If you can help - please leave a comment here and I will get back to you ASAP.

Thank you.

The Ashes in Life. 10 Years.

Last night I spent some quality time hanging out with our students. Softball Ash was having a hard time finding a book of the Bible. I told her there's nothing wrong with using the Table of Contents. That's what it is there for until she learns them. So, she looked it up for herself and upon finding it, she said, "Thanks Camey for not finding it for me." She laid her head on my shoulder as Pastor Mark was closing in prayer. I stroked her face with my hand just like I do my own children.

She is heading out overseas soon for the rest of the summer. One thing I do know about Softball Ash - distance matters none. It has been one of the biggest blessings and privileges I've had to watch her these last few months. To go from not being involved with a church body - to being on fire, getting baptized, and sharing God's love with others! I can still hear her saying, "God's love is free like this bottle of water."

Dating Ashley was there with her boyfriend. As we met up with each other in the hallway after it was over, she shared with me that her mother was going to be bringing her Sunday and actually staying. Her mom it seems has not been to a building known as a church in around 10 years. Dating Ashley was so excited. You could hear it in her voice. 10 years...... Even if something happens and her mom does not stay - there is at least the hope that she thought about it for a moment. That's a start.

Softball Ash and Dating Ashley... Both of whom are becoming more involved with our local church body. As Pastor Mark says, "Belong. Not just believe." Yet, neither of their moms are currently involved. We pray that will change. No matter if it's as a part of where we're at or somewhere else... That they will know God's presence in their lives.... in their very moments of life and want to truly live. That He alone can make them whole.

The Ashes in life can sometimes be gray and scattered. At others - they can be a beautiful picture of how Christ loves the church.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Prayer Request - Brother G

UPDATE: Brother G is no longer running fever. He is out of the bed. Still not feeling his best but is extremely grateful. Thanks for your prayers and keep praying!

So, I've gotten a couple of emails today asking why I haven't requested prayer for Brother G... aka hubby.

So... please pray for Brother G - he is running a fever and is in bed.

He already canceled out on going to the trip to Arlington due to all the lawn pastoring he needed to do this week. Now.. stuck in bed.

Thank you.

Incredibly blessed to be Brother G's wife

On Letting Go. Embracing Change.

Yesterday I had the opportunity to spend some time talking with a couple of different individuals. The subject was change. How to let go when still so connected....

While their particulars I will keep quiet... I can say this...

Letting go is never easy. If it were - then what was being held on to was not of much importance to the individual and their life's moments.

In embracing change - one can find a freedom and peace only found in Him alone.

I ask you to consider.....

What or who do you need to let go of today?

And in embracing change - how might you find more of Him alive in you and outflowing to others than if things were to stay exactly the same?

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

How Does THAT Happen?


Funny thing about fasting.... If you would have ever... and I do mean EVER told me that I would lose the taste for Diet Coke and dark cola products in general - I would have never believed you.

Kid you not - since my 40 days have been up... I have not even drank half of a bottle. Absolutely cannot stand the taste of it.


Yesterday afternoon, I went on a date with two of my favorite guys in the whole wide world. The younger one opened my door for me. The older whispered in my ear some during the movie. The older would hold my hand. The younger would rub my arm like you would a kitty cat. Even though I was sitting in-between them.... they were closer to me than to the other side of their seat. At some point - this type of dating will cease... the younger will want there to be a fourth and it will become a double date. It won't be long before he is taller than me too...

How does THAT happen?

The Little Girl Unseen Part II

Sunday morning, Parker and I were in the first service worshipping together. He elbowed me to look to our left... and there she was. Parker and I both had tears streaming down our faces. Yesterday, he asked me if I had written about what we "witnessed" yet. So, it is at his request that I share even more about Little Girl Unseen.

She was sitting on the outside of the aisle. Her mom and dad to her left. The words to the song we were singing were clearly speaking to her.... she was identifying with them personally. At first, she sat there with her hands raised. Next thing we knew - she was standing with them raised high in the air. There's a reason to stand. To raise her hands in praise and worship....

This little girl has known major heartache in her few years of life. She now also knows much love due in part to her parents. While they may not have given birth to her - they clearly are hers and she is theirs. The changes in this little girl have been like watching a wall tumble down. It has not happened because of her parents love alone... but because of God's. There are numerous others that He has brought into her life to help her see Him.

That's what Parker and I had the incredible blessing of witnessing..... This little girl seeing a glimpse of Him and not being able to sit still and be quiet. Her hands being raised and her standing up spoke volumes.

O, Lord... help us to be more like a little child.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Teaching Our Children Well

The old saying goes that "children live what they learn and they learn best what they experience." Indeed, if you think about it, life's most important lessons are best learned experientially. There are just some things you can't learn through classroom theory. You simply have to get out and get your hands dirty. This fact occurred to me again this afternoon as I watched our middle school students pull out of our church parking lot today to head off to Mission Arlington for their summer mission trip. They will spend the week helping those in the greater Arlington area who are in need. They'll be doing everything from helping serve meals, picking up donated food, clothing and furniture items, to general maintenance work. They will also be putting on two VBS sessions each afternoon for children living in low-income apartment complexes. Some of them will experience things this week they've never experienced before. Some have seldom, if ever, been outside the very sheltered world of Granbury, Texas, and many have never experienced being around abject poverty and all that goes with it. The lessons they will learn this week will stay with them for the balance of their lives and it will impact them in ways that will change how they see the world. My 19 year old daughter went to Mission Arlington in her 7th grade year and it had a lasting impact on her. She has turned out to be one of the most loving, caring, compassionate and empathetic young adults I know of, and I credit much of that to what she experienced at Mission Arlinton on her first mission trip. Even as a 7th grader, it was easy to tell that that mission trip changed her. As a parent, when you ask your teenager how a youth activity went, you're generally lucky if you get much more than, "fine" or "it was okay." The night Courtney came home from Mission Arlington, she started downloading everything and she didn't stop for several weeks. Every time she had the opportunity, she was telling someone about the different children she had encountered during that week. I have no doubt that this years group of middle school students will come back changed as well. My prayer for them this week, along with the obvious prayer that God will minister His love through them to all the children He brings into their path this week, is that God will change their own hearts...that their hearts will be broken for others and filled to overflowing with God's unconditional love. Please join with me in praying for our students and the wonderful adults who have taken time away from their busy schedules to serve with them this week.

Missionaries. Students. A.C. Marine.


One of the things that Brother G and I appreciate most about our local church body is our Student Ministry. This afternoon - a group of missionaries set out to a big city not terribly far from G-town. Shelley and Ryan strive to have a balance between opportunities around our town as well as away from it. That to be "On Mission" is a part of life and living... whether on a trip to Arlington, Texas or to Wal-Mart.

Yes, Brother G and I have sent out two of our sons - Travis (13) and Austin (16) on this particular adventure. We cannot wait to hear how God is going to work in and through them this week. We are praying for lives to be forever changed!


Speaking of students.... I had the privilege of teaching a Bible study class for ninth grade girls. (Brother G taught ninth grade boys) We are always thankful to fill in wherever needed. One thing I can say about the girls..... They are willing to dig deep with me. If you understand any thing at all about me as a teacher it is that I do not want what some refer to as "Sunday School answers." It's not about memorizing an answer to give. It is about breathing the answer in and out in their own moments... or wanting to learn how to even begin. God is not kept in the pages of His Word alone. Why should we act as if He is?


The A.C. in the Attic went out this morning. It meant rearranging classes and even a gathering for lunch. Honestly, I think it was one of the best things that could have happened today. Yes, I just said that.....


We receive word this afternoon that our Marine had a staph infection in his arm and had to have all that had be done to it since the blast taken out. It is quite possible he will lose his arm in the end. No wonder so many individuals were asking Brother G about David this morning.

Please keep praying for him, his wife, and etc.... They are currently out of the USA. We hope to have them back in the states in November.

The Prostitute Has A Name.

Last night Brother G and I received word about a woman being arrested for prostitution. We were saddened to hear this news because we had just been discussing her on the way to where we were at when we received the news. When I say "we" .... I mean Brother G, myself, Travis and Parker. We had been talking about not seeing her in quite a while.

Her name is Brenda. I've written about her on numerous occasions. Brenda is often seen hitchhiking around our town and surrounding areas. If her thumb is up - she wants a ride... If it's not - she wants to walk. When she walks - her head is down looking at the ground.

How do we know Brenda's name? She has ridden with me numerous times before. At times with one, two or all three of our sons with me. She even let me drive her all the way to the drop off for her house before. Only once... but still.... Do I know which house in particular? No....

"The Prostitute" has a name... it's Brenda. And if I see her out on the highway hitchhiking again - I will offer her a ride if her thumb is up. Brenda matters to God. Therefore, she matters to me as well.

How can I talk about noticing others.... and drive on by? How can I be the minister He called me to be and act as if I did not see her at all? or even a Christ-follower period....

Yes, she was arrested for prostitution. That does not mean her life is over. It could just really be starting.

Please join us in praying for Brenda. May she know God's love for her today like never before.

And may she know it because of those who are willing to intersect their lives with hers.