Friday, October 23, 2009

Welcome to America!

Just read this update on Aaron's blog and I have tears:
Hard to believe I’m actually typing this. Story has arrived in the USA!!!!!! And her last name is “Ivey.” God has worked the miraculous!!! No doubt.

I’m writing this from my phone, so bear with me… Jamie & Story landed in Miami a few minutes ago… Now they go through immigration & customs where US officials will scour through all our paperwork (again) before she’s allowed in. Shouldn’t be any hold ups or problems. Story is still sick. Not sure what’s up. Jamie will take her to doctor asap.

I am in Arkansas and getting on a flight home tomorrow to see my baby girl! I got to see her a few weeks ago and she was starting to warm up to me. Looking forward to seeing her in a carseat in our car tomorrow!!

Amos is still in the process. My heart breaks for my son today. His sister is no longer with him, and I’m sure he wonders if papa is really EVER going to take him home. Keep praying for his adoption process. Since they are not biologically related, they are 2 totally seperate adoptions. He has a ways to go as he’s still in MOI. But that boy will have his day!!!

Praise GOD for all that He’s done and continues to do… And thank you all for sharing in the struggle AND rejoicing!!!

SO thankful for God's provision, His perfect and GOOD plan and His faithfulness.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Story is Coming Home!

Thanking God over and over today! My good friends Aaron & Jamie will finally bring home their daughter, Story, from Haiti!Jamie is on her way right now to pick her up and will be home tomorrow night!
They have been in this process for over 2 years.
Please continue to pray that everything goes smoothly in bringing her back and also PLEASE pray for sweet Amos. He is still in the MOI stage of the adoption. Pray for his sweet little heart as Story leaves to come home.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Heart Corruptions

O God,
May thy Spirit speak in me that I may speak to thee.
I have no merit, let the merit of Jesus stand for me.
I am undeserving, but I look to thy tender mercy.
I am full of infirmities, wants, sin; thou art full of grace.
I confess my sin, my frequent sin, my wilful sin;
All my powers of body and soul are defiled;
A fountain of pollution is deep within my nature.
There are chambers of foul images within my being;
I have gone from one odious room to another,
walked in a no-man's-land of dangerous imaginations,
pried into the secrets of my fallen nature.
I am utterly ashamed that I am what I am in myself;
I have no green shoot in me nor fruit, but thorns and thistles;
I am a fading leaf that the wind drives away;
I live bare and barren as a winter tree,
unprofitable, fit to be hewn down and burnt.
Lord, dost thou have mercy on me?
Thou hast struck a heavy blow at my pride,
at the false god of self,
and I lie in pieces before thee.
But thou hast given me another master and lord, thy Son, Jesus,
and now my heart is turned towards holiness,
my life speeds as an arrow from a bow towards complete obedience to thee.
Help me in all my doings to put down sin and to humble pride.
Save me from the love of the world and the pride of life,
from everything that is natural to fallen man,
and let Christ's nature be seen in me day by day.
Grant me grace to bear thy will without repining, and delight to be
not only chiselled, squared, or fashioned,
but separated from the old rock where I have been embedded so long,
and lifted from the quarry to the upper air,
where I may be built in Christ for ever.
--The Valley of Vision

Monday, October 19, 2009

Sweetness Happening!

Some exciting things are coming up that I'm really looking forward to...

1. This Thursday night: Derek Webb in concert.
2. November 3rd and 10th I'm heading to Texas A&M to lead worship with the guys at Breakaway. It's supposedly pretty cool. :)
3. November 6th & 7th I'm getting away by myself for a little retreat! Some friends are letting me stay at their "retreat house". It's going to be a time to get some serious songwriting done and to just spend some uninterrupted time with Jesus. It's gonna be so sweet.
4. THANKSGIVING BREAK. Oh man. I cannot even wait. In 37 days I'm heading home to Iowa to visit my family. One of my best friends, Jen, is coming with me. It's going to be LEGENDARY. The last time I was home was 10 months ago. WAY too long.
5. December 8: Shane and Shane in concert. I saw them a few years ago and they are incredible live.
6. February 4-6 is the Verge Conference that my church is putting together. It's a conference that will be focused on how to build missional community wherever you are. Some amazing speakers are going to be speaking including my pastor, Matt Carter and Mr. Francis Chan. Aaron Ivey, the guys and I will be leading worship. SO excited!
7. Recovery. God continues to amaze me at what He is doing through this group. I've been going to Recovery since last January, went through a step study, got a sponsor, still going through the 12 steps...leading worship once a month and now leading an open share group. I cannot even begin to tell you how much this has changed and is changing my life. EVERYONE needs to go through a recovery program. No matter what. DO it. It makes sense. Living life will make more sense. It is so hard, and painful at times. God shows you things that you never even knew existed. Hurts, habits, fears, and pride. But it is so worth it. This community of broken, imperfect, real people has opened my eyes to the reality that we are ALL broken, imperfect messed up people. Some choose to live it out with other people and some people choose to put on a mask of "I've got it all together" while stuffing the mess away.
I'm excited to see how God is growing this group. He is releasing an amazing freedom in His children.

So much goodness. I'm thankful and I'm full. God is good and I am undeserving. Such sweetness.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Grandpa's Funky Shoes

My mom wrote a sweet post on our Things With Wings blog.
My grandpa is 84, has emphysema and is on oxygen 24/7. He can't really do much.
My mom has been amazing as she watches her parents get older and start losing things that were once strong. She serves and loves them constantly. She is being Jesus to them. It's beautiful.
Anyway, my grandpa used to be really crafty. He would make things out of wood, paint, and do all sorts of other things. He hasn't been able to do much of that anymore, but my mom will bring over some little wood pieces for him to paint to pass the time and so that he can be creative again.
The other day my mom got him some new tennies. His old ones were worn out and falling apart. The next time she came over she found this:These are his old tennis shoes! He painted them! How precious is that?!
My grandpa is funky. And they kinda look like some sort of African flag.
Maybe he's African...which could explain my hair.

A Cry for Deliverance

From "The Valley of Vision":
Heavenly Father,
Save me entirely from sin.
I know I am righteous through the righteousness of another,
but I pant and pine for likeness to thyself;
I am thy child and should bear thy image,
Enable me to recognize my death unto sin;
When it tempts me may I be deaf unto its voice.
Deliver me from the invasion as well as the dominion of sin.
Grant me to walk as Christ walked,
to live in the newness of his life,
the life of love, the life of faith, the life of holiness.
I abhor my body of death,
its indolence, envy, meanness, pride.
Forgive, and kill these vices,
have mercy on my behalf,
on my corrupt and wandering heart.
When thy blessings come I begin to idolize them,
and set my affection on some beloved object-
children, friends, wealth, honour;
Cleanse this spiritual adultery and give me chastity;
close my heart to all but thee.
Sin is my greatest curse;
Let thy victory be apparent to my consciousness,
and displayed in my life.
Help me to be always devoted, confident, obedient,
resigned, childlike in my trust of thee,
to love thee with soul, body, mind, strength,
to love my fellow-man as I love myself,
to be saved from unregenerate temper, hard thoughts,
slanderous words, meanness, unkind manners,
to master my tongue and keep the door of my lips.
Fill me with grace daily,
that my life be a fountain of sweet water.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Valley of Vision-The Smell of Old People

I just got this treasure in the mail yesterday. I ordered it used from It's old school and it smells like old people. I LOVE it. I seriously smell it all the time.
Is that weird?
Whatever. It reminds me of my grandparents basement.
Last Tuesday at our prayer meeting, Matt read a prayer from this book that completely wrecked me out and I knew that I needed to get this book.
I read this today:
O God, the Author of all good,
I come to thee for the grace another day will require
for its duties and events.
I step out into a wicked world,
I carry about with me an evil heart,
I know that without thee I can do nothing,
that everything with which I shall be concerned,
however harmless in itself,
may prove an occasion of sin or folly,
unless I am kept by thy power.
Hold thou me up and I shall be safe.
Preserve my understanding from subtilty of error,
my affections from love of idols,
my character from stain of vice,
my profession from every form of evil.
May I engage in nothing in which I cannot implore thy blessing,
and in which I cannot invite thy inspection.
Prosper me in all lawful undertakings,
or prepare me for disappointments;
Give me neither poverty nor riches;
Feed me with food convenient for me,
lest I be full and deny thee
and say, Who is the Lord?
or be poor, and steal, and take thy name in vain.
May every creature be made good to me by prayer and thy will;
Teach me how to use the world, and not abuse it,
to improve my talents,
to redeem my time,
to walk in wisdom toward those without,
and in kindness to those within,
to do good to all men,
and especially to my fellow Christians.
And to thee be the glory.
SO good. There are prayers for all topics. What I absolutely love is that the people who wrote these prayers are old guys (Including my man, Spurgeon). They lived a long time ago. The things going on in the world were different, but yet the battle with our souls is the same. The desire to bring Jesus glory is the same.
I love it and I think you should love it too.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Sterling the Super Hero

I don't know this little boy. But I'm praying for him today. A lot. His name is Sterling and he is pretty much a superhero.I have been hearing his story and prayer requests on Twitter today. (again...God uses Twitter. weird.)
He is in surgery right now getting a brain tumor removed. Pray for him.
Here are some specific requests that I got from this guy's blog:
  1. A successful surgery. - What’s the definition of “successful” here? Well, according to Roger, one simply where Sterling comes out of it. I know that sounds serious, but that’s because it is.
  2. Getting the whole tumor. - The doctor has told them that he expects to get about 85% of it with the chance to get the whole thing. Evidently, there’s 15% that’s in a blind area, and the doctor isn’t willing to risk going into that blind area. Totally understandable. However, the way they’ll remove the tumor, evidently, is by “drilling” into it so that it collapses on itself. Hopefully, the hidden 15% will collapse with the rest so that it can come on out. Roger equated it to a gummy worm being stuck in your kid’s car seat. You pull on it hoping the whole thing comes out, but there’s a chance the end breaks off. So, pray for the whole worm.
  3. Good recovery. – They say that kids bounce back a lot better than adults. So, that’s good. And Sterling’s a strong, active kid (as you can tell from how good he is at soccer). So, I fully expect this one to be easy. However, we definitely want the Lord’s hand fully in Sterling’s recovery. They’re expecting a seven-day hospital stay followed by about three weeks at home. However, he could be up and going after a couple of days. There’s just a number of factors on which that depends.
  4. A benign tumor. – This is just the beginning of a bit of a journey for Sterling, Roger, Becca and their family. The prayer is that the journey isn’t made any more serious.
  5. Strength for Sterling. – I can’t imagine having to process this for myself, much less being a four-almost-five-year-old. It’s a lot to deal with for sure, but I know that with God, Sterling can get through it for sure.
  6. Peace for Roger and Becca. – Probably the hardest thing for them to have right now.
  7. Guidance and empowering for Dr. Wellons. – This is Sterling’s main doctor, at least the one that’s going to be holding the instruments in the O.R. However, we’re seeking the help of the Great Physician. I want Him to be the one working in and through all the doctors and nurses.
Sterling's dad is on twitter and his latest update says this:
"OR Update: skull cap removed, all going well. Working their way toward tumor (slow process), going under microscope. Confirming U2 playing."

Keep this little guy in your prayers today.

Courrier EP on iTunes. GET IT.

Go now. RIGHT now and get this EP.
Courrier : "Like the Cold of Snow in the Time of Harvest"
These guys are legit. I have been playing this CD over and over in my car since their release party Thursday night.
Get it on itunes. You will love it.

Monday, October 12, 2009


My good friend Zach posted a video of a sermon he did on adoption. Here is a clip of an illustration that he gives with his daughter Mya. She is lovely!

Untitled from Zach Nielsen on Vimeo.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

New Music --Todd Agnew & Chris Tomlin

New Music out today!!!

Mr. Todd Agnew.
Todd and his family attend my church (Austin Stone). I have gotten the privilege to lead worship with him a few times. Amazing musician, amazing heart for Jesus.
Check out his new CD "Need". He is real and his songs are passionate about the struggles of life and the joy that is in Jesus.
Here is a quote from his website:
"One after another, we learn that we have a real need to be loved, to be rescued, to be redeemed, to be restored. Those are universal needs and they are all met in Jesus. It's a matter of trusting God to help me walk through that...even though I don't know what I'm doing."
Mr. Chris Tomlin.
Chris used to be one of the worship leader at my church before he moved to Atlanta to help start the Passion City Church.
He is releasing a Christmas album, "Glory in the Highest" today! SO excited for this.
Go get some new music!


You will need to check this out.
Some good friends of mine are releasing an EP this week. They are REALLY good.
Check them out and listen to their music
You can also follow them on twitter

So here are the details:

EP info:
Courrier “Like the Cold of Snow in the Time of Harvest”
EP release Party in Austin, TX: La Zona Rosa, THIS Thursday, Oct. 8th, 8pm, with Jets Under Fire and The Canvas Waiting
EP drop Date: EP will be available on iTunes, eMusic, Amazon, etc., on Oct. 13th.

Seriously don't miss out on this. These guys are the real deal.
They were on the Austin morning news today! Here is the video--

Thursday, October 01, 2009


*****HUGE NEED*****

Volunteers are needed for this year's Hopefest. It is a celebration happening in the St. John's neighborhood where booths and resources will be available for the community.
They need 400 volunteers and they currently have less than 50 signed up.
This is 9 days away.

Hopefest is happening on October 10 from 9:30-3pm @ Reagan High School
Go to the website to get more information and to sign up.

Spread the word/blog about it, tweet about it, facebook about it...and SIGN UP TO HELP!!!!!
This is a HUGE deal. Last year they had over 4,500 people show up to this event.
They cannot do this with 50 volunteers.

55 Days until Legendary

The personalized google desktop countdown has been set.
It's official.
55 days.
I will be in Iowa seeing my family and friends for Thanksgiving!!!
I can't wait!!
This trip is going to be a little different. The legendary factor will go through the roof...because...get ready...
One of my best friends, Jen, is coming home with me!!
I'm pretty sure it's gonna get out of control real fast.