Your Mother’s a Fish…

Our missions trip to NYC a few weeks ago was awesome and colorful. We knew it would be… I have a lot of experiences to write about and have been delayed because life has truly been crazy lately.

There was one particular day during our trip that I was especially silly… you know… the kind of silly where you start laughing and can’t stop… and it’s complete inappropriate to laugh. I started laughing on the subway… during rush hour… when you and 100 of your closest friends are literally smashed face to face with one another. I inadvertently tramped on the foot of the person standing beside me. I felt really bad about it and turned to tell her I was sorry. She made a face at me that literally made me giggle…. and, perhaps being sleep deprived, I may have been a little delirious when I started to giggle… but once I started, I couldn’t stop. I laughed all the way to our stop, and embarrassed my daughter to the point where she scolded me. 😂

When we exited the train and came up the stairs, there was a verbal altercation going on nearby, as another train arrived. A woman was verbally assaulting a man as he calmly walked away from him. She was very upset, yelling wildly at him. I heard her say, “your mother’s a fish!” And I thought I myself how surprising it was she didn’t use stronger language for as angry as she was. Turns out she actually did… but my ears were protected to hear something different. Lol. Our entire group found it hilarious that I heard “fish” when she said something completely different, and this became our mantra for the week! They all got a kick out of telling my daughter that HER mother is a fish!

We’ve since added a few variants like “son of a fish” and “stop fishin”

So the next time you’re frustrated with someone… feel free to spread a little humor and tell them that their mother is a fish.

Be blessed, my friends!

SB

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Craig

…to see the power of God unfold in someone else’s life is truly amazing. The longer I love Jesus, the more I see it..

Recently, my dear friend had an encounter with a young lost soul.. and he responded as Jesus would have… by listening to his story and then pointing him toward Christ.

I don’t know what demons lie in Craig’s life to cause him to be on the place where he is, but I know that God sent someone to him who understands those demons and could care for him as he needed right then and plant a seed to find God when he’s ready.

I am thrilled to see God work in my friends’ life, using him to reach other people. In and of itself, this act of obedience draws my friend closer to God..

God uses imperfect people to reach imperfect people.

God is up to something. He is constantly shaping us and forming us to be more like what He needs us to be in order to fulfill His purpose in our lives.

God is up to something. I’m honored to be a part of it.

Blessings,

SB

Danny… the encourager… with just his guitar and God

Yesterday, our youth pastor and his wife and another youth leader and I brought sixteen of our youth to Orlando, Florida, for the Christian & Missionary Alliance LIFE conference. The conference happens every three years and boasts some of the best Christian speakers. It’s literally a conference for teenagers, and they will sit in a variety of seminars for the next four days

For some, it will be life changing.

This is my third time attending, and every single time I have been blown away to see the power of God at work.

For the 2016 conference, I hadn’t planned on attending because I didn’t want to use my vacation time, but our youth pastor needed some other adult leaders to attend, so I agreed. We drove to that conference, and I rode in the car with my dear friend, Cindy, our youth pastors wife. I was so encouraged by our conversation during the whole trip, and I realized that God had allowed circumstances to be what they were SO THAT I WOULD BE WHERE GOD NEEDED ME TO BE. He does that for us, you know!!?

Well yesterday was no exception. We had a connection on our Southwest flight in Atlanta but didn’t need to exit the plane, which gave us an opportunity to move seats and be closer to each other and the front of the plane. When we did, I took a seat near the front of our group so I could get off first and be in the terminal when thebithees got off, and our pastor sat at the back of our group to bring up the rear. Two of our girls were in the row with me and one girl sat by herself in the row across from me. She seemed to want to be by herself. A few minutes later, our pastors wife joined her so that she wasn’t alone, but she still sat fairly aloof and looked out the window. (I learned later that her husband had encouraged her to move her seat). As the began boarding, someone put a guitar into the overhead compartment above me and took a seat. I didn’t pay much attention after that, but at some point, I saw a man ask Jessie if she minded he took the isle seat next to her (and across from me). He sat. I smiled to myself as I heard her introduce herself to him and, in the process of exchanging pleasantries, explain that we were taking this group of kids to a Christian conference. His eyes lit up and he began to tell her about all of the “God moments” he’d experienced. Turns out he loves Jesus and looks for opportunities to encourage people with Gods love.

He shared with her that he writes poetry and shared one of his poems with her.

As it turned out, he had been sitting in the row in front but a woman with limited mobility came into the plane and he gave his seat up for her to move into Jessie’s row.

I smiled because in my introverted self, I would never have struck up a conversation with him had he sat next to me. But somehow God knew that Jesse needed that mans encouragement at just that moment. Not only that, but He orchestrated every seat change for both Jessie and Danny to make it happen.

By the end of the flight, I could tell that Jessie had been touched by Danny’s spirit, and his poetry. I have no idea how he makes a living but he told Jessie that he felt Gods calling on him was to be an encourager to other people.

As we gathered our belongings to deplane, and he reached for the guitar above me, I said “oh, that’s your guitar!?” He said, “yes. It’s my guitar. My wife didn’t like that guitar when we were first married but I told her that we had spent a lot of time together… just me, and God and that guitar”

Thank you, Danny, for your blessing to Jessie (and consequently me vicariously). May God continue to use you to be an encourager!

If I can get a copy of his poem from Jessie, I’ll share it with you so you can be blessed too!

Blessings,

SB

Blessings…

When we are faithful to God, He is faithful to us.

One of my favorite authors, Mark Batterson, often says, “Work like it depends on you, pray like it depends on God”.   I’ve been praying for some things in my life for a very long time, knowing that God is faithful, but in all honesty, wondering if/how they would ever truly happen.

As I sit here on July 8, my Year of WAIT The Word – naming my year, I can hardly believe all that has happened – and in a relatively short period of time.  I am truly astounded at God’s blessings.   I know that I don’t deserve them for I have failed so many times at so many things.   I was reminded the other night, as I listened to a sermon on the radio, that God doesn’t call perfect people to do things for Him.   HE CALLS IMPERFECT PEOPLE to reach imperfect people.   I am probably one of the most imperfect people out there, and yet I have felt a passion for reaching other people like me to let them know that God can do miraculous things in their lives if they only let Him.

 God is up to something big… and I’m glad to be a part of it.

This week, I will travel to Orlando, Florida with 16 of our youth to take part in a conference in the Christian &Missionary Alliance Church. The conference, which is held every three years, features many of today’s Christian speakers and will have worship and breakout sessions to cover a variety of topics facing our youth today with Biblical perspective.

Three years ago I attended the same conference. I hadn’t really planned on it because I didn’t want to use all of my vacation time at work but our youth pastor needed another chaperone and asked if I could go. I reluctantly agreed turns out God knew that I needed to be there.

There are people who will attend the conference this week that God knows need to be there. I am praying their eyes will be opened to see the power of God work in a powerful way, using imperfect people to reach imperfect people.

Be blessed today, my friends!

SB