Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Pic of my children at my daughter's bachelor's graduation several years back. Now she's getting her Masters...

Just a quick update before hopping on another plane… It seems that I’m on a wheel that’s turning round faster and faster. My head is spinning and I can’t get off. But I do believe there’re some amazing things around the corner.

Our daughter, Rachele, graduates with her Master’s of Arts from Luther Rice Seminary in Atlanta in a few days. We’re really proud of her—especially since she’s a newly wed and continued doing her online courses while working and being a new bride. Way to go gal.

On Saturday, I’ll be speaking at an Adoption Awareness seminar at the Daytona Beach Hilton Hotel, beginning around 1.30 pm, and organized by a new adoption ministry—EmbraceD by Grace founded by a dear friend of mine. Apparently, Florida is one of the highest states for children who need adopting or fostering so we’re praying for God to really touch hearts to make a difference in their lives.

Africa – well, we’ll be going again soon. Or at least my husband will.

As I’m typing this, the TV is on in the background showing the Academy Country Music Awards. Carrie Underwood just won a reward and she (again) thanked God first and foremost. Ok, I know some don’t get it. I know America is fast falling. But trust me, we’re still better off than many countries where folks don’t believe in God, or if they do, it’s not the real God. But let’s not forget: To whom much is given, much is expected. Because we’ve been given much, we are more accountable. That’s sobering.

Lots more to say but now I must go back to my packing. At least I can enjoy the music in the background.

Closing thought: Let’s be praying for the needy, and especially the world’s suffering little ones. And let’s remember: The first person to benefit from my prayers is me. It changes me! And, of course, it opens the way for those precious children to receive timely help.


Saturday, May 05, 2007

Don’t Be So Callous, So Cal-ers!

Today I was not thinking about Heaven. Not that I don’t often think of it. I do. But today I was absorbed by earthly problems. Seems there are days like that (let’s say, most days!!!). My focus shifted later when I attended the End Times Conference at Maranatha Chapel. I was reminded of the simplicity of Christ and our greater hope. It was very kooooooooool to consider all the biblical prophecies already fulfilled and to remember again that our lives here are ephemeral. I’ve been reminded of it a lot lately here in So Cal.

Let’s face it, So Cal-ers, we’re spoiled. Apart from the gorgeous weather and the nearby ocean, we’re also living in a part of the world that’s sun-saturated and Son-soaked. There’s so much going on here to deepen your faith that it’s not hard to be enthused about Jesus—if you choose to tune into the vibe. Some disagree. Some think So Cal is all superfluous superficiality. I say, it’s the new-era Bible belt. But I guess it all depends where you come from. (I just returned from four countries in Africa where people would die to have access to such an abundance of diversity presenting the Christian message. And where I come from—Europe—it’s spiritually impoverished.)

Europe is poor. And Africa is poor. Poor children. Poor people. And poor representations of Christ. In Africa, many try to exploit the hungry souls of the precious Africans, bringing them such rubbishy lies as are presented by the so called “prosperity gospel”. It sure isn’t a gospel. It’s a bunch of bologna. The problem is that when you’re hungry, and there’s no food, you’ll eat bologna.

So Cal-ers are rich…and I don’t mean money. I mean that here in So Cal we have access to all kinds of Bible speakers, Christian music, Jesus conferences—all the time. If you’re hungry to grow it’s there. Of course, there’s plenty of seeker friendly, superficial churchianity also. But if you choose the meat, it’s there. And with good music to go with it.

Take the last few weeks for example. Last weekend the Truth seminar took place in Yorba Linda. A weekend of solid teaching to ground folks in their faith. Simultaneously, there was also a seminar in Anaheim on helping children at risk—something we should all feel concerned about in a world with ever-increasing cruelty to children. Sadly too few people attended. Prior to that, 6 weeks tent revival took place in Costa Mesa. In spite of the distance, we were able to attend a few evenings including the Wednesday featuring the old Jesus movement band “Love Song”. And they sounded better than ever, making us weep with good memories. (That evening many came to Christ, just as back in the good ol’ seventies....)

But I wonder how many are oblivious to all the God stuff that’s going on around us. Too busy perhaps? Oh, tis hard to pull away from the surf (ouch!!!) or the malls perhaps with their never-ending, ever-enticing sales…So much to distract us. So little time for…well, for less entertaining stuff. Sorry to sound facetious—or maybe a tad self-righteous—but I’m looking at life as a European who spent over two decades in dark France where such Christianity is nada. Aint there.

Yes, it’s true that there’s a lot of superficial Christianity. But there’s also a lot of amazing stuff taking place for God’s Kingdom. We need to tune our hearts to them. Tune our hearts to His voice to be sure we’re in the flow of what He’s doing. There are many, many hungry souls out there—even here in So Cal. (Met three today). Let’s not become calloused whereby we don’t see them or hear them.

Let’s not be so callous, So Cal-ers! Rather, let’s be soft and gooey about what God is soft and gooey about. Lets be tender and alert to all that God is doing so that we can better reach out to those who don’t know Him. And let’s remember we’re rich—oh so rich compared to many—and give to those who are oh so poor. He’ll meet us there!