Monday, August 8, 2011

Locked Up Abroad

So "why are you posting about this" you say? Well i'd like to tell you a story of how we were "almost" locked up abroad.

Have you ever seen the show? It's where people are usually smuggling drugs and get caught doing it and then they get put in jail in a foreign country. There are the rare occasions where someone is innocent and is taken hostage. I'm not even sure if this show is still airing. We use to watch it back in the days of cable....oh how I miss those days sometimes.

We went on vacation with some friends a few years ago to the BEAUTIFUL Mayan Riviera. It was amazing! J and I went there on our honeymoon and couldn't wait to go back and take people with us!

We got to the same resort where J and I had previously stayed and it looked a little different than we remembered. We knew that a hurricane had come through since we were there and that remodeling had been done. What we didn't know was that they sold off half of the land and now the resort was literally less than half the size that it was! They also sold off all of the good stuff! Like the great beach access and beautiful little snorkeling inlet!

Now of course we had anticipated this trip so much that we weren't going to let anything get us down. We decided to go "exploring" over to the side that was sold off so that J and I could show Brent and Heather how great it use to be.....BAD IDEA!!!!!

We start walking over and realize that nothing had been restored on the "other side". All the once beautiful bungalows and restaurants were still sitting in ruins from the hurricane. The resort is very topical and secluded. You wonder down small jungle covered paths. It was a very eerie feeling walking through an abandoned and wrecked resort.

We are about one curve away from the beach access when J and Heather spotted a massive hermit crab and stopped to stare. Brent and I were apparently not interested. We kept walking a head of them. We both suddenly looked up and saw and electrical line running from somewhere into the top of one of the bungalows. Then we saw some snorkeling gear. Then we heard a radio. (not clicking yet) We turned the corner only to hear what sounded like a multitude of voices. We saw clothes lines with lots of clothes hanging on them. Then we heard a very loud HEY!!! We saw a very scary man and heard lots of other voices yelling at us in spanish (which none of us speak). We turned around and started walking as fast as we could to get out of there.

Now people, I AM SLOW! I am NOT in shape. Heather is like a road runner. She is so far ahead. The boys are having to go slow to stay behind me.


We round a corner and are in an all out sprint!!! SO IS THE MAN!!!

I've never been more scared in my life. EVER.

All of these thoughts of how stupid we were for going over there are running through my mind. We were about to die. No one will ever find us. Who are these people? Do they want to hurt us? Why did I not listen to that gut feeling? Did anyone else have that feeling? AHHHHHHHH

My body was totally numb.

Now obviously i'm still alive and not featured on the show so yeah we didn't get caught. We made it back to our resort. But we were so scared that we went and changed clothes so that if for some reason that guy came looking for us maybe he wouldn't recognize us amongst all the other american tourist. Seems silly now but at the time it was the right thing to do.

We started talking to the staff at our resort about what was over there. The only thing they really said was DON'T GO OVER THERE!! with a very serious and half scared tone of voice. NICE, should have asked that before we went frolicking through the abandoned resort that was apparently not abandoned!

Why is it that when you are on vacation you think you are invincible? It makes no since yet somehow I always feel like that.

We still to this day laugh and kind of shiver. We could have been caught. Locked up Aboard. They could have done anything to us.

Hope you enjoyed my story. Maybe you've had a much closer encounter with a life altering situation than this but either way, it makes you remember that you aren't invincible and we don't need to take our lives for granted. Anything can happen any time. So lets live each day to the fullest. Live it with joy and love! Thank God for your blessings!!!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

My Sweet Baby Boy

I've never spoke about our sweet baby until now. Everything happened so fast that I never had the chance to share about him.

We started trying to have kids in October of 2009. It was so exciting to know that any time I could be pregnant! I was praying over our little baby before he was conceived. It took a little longer than expected. Everyone I was close to never even really "tried" to have kids so when we didn't get pregnant right away of course worry started to set in. "Can I even get pregnant?" "What if my heart of adoption is because we can't conceive?" Each month i'd take test after test just waiting and waiting. 

In June of 2010 I finally got those longed for 2 red lines!!!!! Excited no where near describes it! I remember J patiently waiting on our bed as I did the deed. I came out with a huge smile and he knew what that meant! I'll never forget the look on his face. Priceless! Joy filled our hearts like never before!!

I made a Dr's appt right away. We got conformation that I was pregnant! So happy!! We decided to go ahead and start telling people. It was so fun to call our parents and friends. We had waited over 5 years before we decided to even start trying to have a baby. So needless to say our families were ready!

I knew from the moment I saw those 2 red lines that I was carrying a sweet baby boy. I had no doubt. Once again that feeling in your stomach!

I went back to the Dr to have my HCG levels checked again (which looking back I would have known that things weren't quite right but it was my first time so I thought this was standard) and this time they stayed the same. Now medically that meant your baby wasn't growing or else they would have went up significantly but I still had hope and believed 100% that God could do anything and our baby was fine. I went back 1 week later and had my blood drawn again to check the levels. I remember patiently waiting for the results. Finally a couple of days later I was at work when my Dr called me. 

That call changed my life forever. I'll never forget the causal-ness of that conversation. She said "your baby isn't viable." I didn't even know what that meant. "Your baby isn't alive". Wow those words would ring in my ears forever. Of course I immediately lost it. I ran to Melissa (my Pastor's wife) and just sobbed. I'm sure she said really encouraging things but I really don't remember. She just let me cry. I needed that. 

I still had to call J. He met me at home where we prayed and cried together. Then all the calls to friends and family. It was very hard. At the time I regretted that we had told everyone. I was so mad that I was having to go back and re-tell everyone that now I wasn't pregnant. But now I don't regret it. I WAS pregnant. I WAS carry my little boy. He WAS worth the excitement. He IS still part of my family. I'm glad that everyone was excited for us and our little boy. 

I knew God would bless us with another baby. I was so sad but so glad that I knew my sweet boy was with Jesus. I know he had plenty of friends there to play with and welcome him home. I know God can take care of him much better than I can.

The very next month we were blessed with another baby. My sweet Ella! She is a gift straight from heaven. When I look at her I remember her brother. I know that one day i'll get to hold him in my arms and squeeze his little cheeks!! 

In February of this year we went to a conference in Dallas. I was about 6 months pregnant. We were staying a hotel and J and I shared a room with our friend and student pastor, Brent. I came down for breakfast one morning and he said "I don't want to freak you out but...". I had no clue what was coming next. He's always saying something but I knew this time he was serious. He began to tell me that he woke up in the middle of the night and saw an angel standing beside my bed. He said it was a little boy dressed in all white. He said that he knew immediately in his spirit that it was Ella's guardian angel. He said I wasn't scared and didn't even question I knew exactly what it was. Now you have to know that Brent is someone who has a lot of credibility with me. He says what he means and does what he says. I trust him. As soon as he told me, it was all I could do to choke back the tears. God immediately said that the little boy was my little boy. Ella's brother. He was watching over her even in the womb. I was overwhelmed with joy and love. I was so happy that God had given me conformation that I had been carrying a little boy. 

 I thank God for taking care of my little boy. I'm so privileged to be able to raise our little girl. I thank God everyday she is here on earth with us.

I cherish every smile, every cry, every quite moment with her, EVERYTHING!

I like to think that when I see Ella smiling at "nothing" that she is looking at her little brother making silly faces at her. 

I know that there are so many women who have experienced the same loss and even greater loss. I hope this encourages you. I hope that you are assured that your babies are in heaven. That God is taking care of them and He will take care of you. 

In honor of our love for all of our children, here is a fun little print I just added to the shop

Also i'll be running a special 15% off everything in the shop from now until Saturday! So hurry and place your orders! Enter LOVE15 at checkout! Click here to go directly to this print!

Monday, August 1, 2011


Worship is what I'm called to do. It's my passion. It's what makes! It's how I feel closest to God. It's how I connect.

If you've known me since I was a kid you know that I love to sing. I would sing anywhere and everywhere I possibly could. I'd sing to anyone who ask me to. I'd sing to people who didn't ask me to :) Thankfully I've grown up (a little) and God is using my passion for singing on a weekly basis. It's so cool to be able to do what your passionate about each week and best of all for God. It means so much to me when someone says "your worship touched me" or "God really spoke to me today through worship"! My heart melts with joy when I hear these things.

Revolution Church

I went through a "dry" season if you will. I considered stepping down from the worship team. I was so caught up in trivial things that I could not focus on worship. I told God either give me your anointing or remove me PLEASE! I do not want to be just another singer. I want to be anointed to lead your people in worship. After a few months I let go of the "trivial" things and God's anointing began to flow. I felt free to lead and worship. I had not told anyone what I had been praying about. My Pastor's wife ask me "what happened? You went from singing, to being anointed." She gave me much needed confirmation from the Lord. 

It's no accident that J and I are married. His passion is worship. We've always known we were called to be worship leaders. We would always say things like, "one day when we travel and lead worship" or "when" or "if"....all of these things were just talk an no action. We went last October to lead worship for a small group of people in Glen Rose, Texas. We LOVED it! It was nothing big or grand from a worldly point of view, but from God's point of view it was just what He wanted to see! It was the thing that pushed us forward. It was at this camp that God whispered "just one step"! He spoke to both of us. We knew exactly what we needed to do. Why were we waiting? Why were we saying "when" and "if"? All we had to do was take just a little step in the direction that we were called to. We weren't quitting everything and doing something on a whim. We were simply taking one step forward.

We sought counsel from a mentor/worship leader that J grew up with. His prayers and wise words meant so much to both of us.

We started a website If you check out our website you'll see that in 10 months we've had more opportunities to lead worship than ever before!

We contacted anyone and everyone that we knew who would possibly be looking for worship leaders. Now, can we quit our jobs and do it full time?....not yet...but soon!!!!!! It was that one small step that gave us confidence and courage to move towards our calling.

Our church, Heart of Praise has allowed us to grow as leaders. We have learned and are still learning so much. We have our main Worship Pastor and 4 other worship leaders. Our Worship Pastor allows us to rotate who is leading on Sunday mornings. This gives J and I the freedom to lead and speak what God is saying. It is such a blessing to serve on a team that fully supports you! It's a blessing that our pastors are excited to see us step out and lead at other places.

What's your one step? What's the one thing you could do to step towards your calling? Your desires? Sometimes all you need is a little nudge in the right direction.

Don't be a "lurker" leave comments!! Let me know what your one step is?