Saturday, August 21, 2010

Goodness Invasion

"Speak up for the people who have no voice, for the rights of all the down-and-outers. Speak out for justice! Stand up for the poor and destitute!" Proverbs 31:8 Message

Today the city of Youngstown was invaded with the pure, 'no-strings attached' goodness of God! Goodness Invasion 2010 made its way to the Covelli Center. This event amazed me. I basically showed up for a day and worked hard for 5 hours.. but..what amazed me was the planning and dedication of the leadership of New Life. Pastor Juan, Amanda & Chris, Norm & Anita. Wow! They are just a few of the key people who carried out the vision. I feel so honored to be a part of this house.

The job I carried out today was fairly basic, I passed out boxes of Splenda and cans of peas.
It was great because I was at the very first table. I was one of the first people that the attendees came in contact with under the tent. They gathered bags, boxes, and whatever they could get (I saw several suitcases) and started down the "line".

Canned goods, pasta, drinks, and produce were just a few of the types of food items that we blessed the people with throughout the day. They couldn't even carry all that they were getting!

Let me go back....

When I pulled into the Covelli Center parking lot at around 7:55am, I became overwhelmed when I saw the line of people stretching as far as the eye could see. I felt the Spirit say 'this is the Kingdom'. I began to cry. It was a powerful and emotional moment as I had an encounter with the reality of God's heart.

Even though my feet and back hurt, I had a hard time even leaving my 'post' for even a few minutes. I didn't just throw food into their box. I looked into their eyes - greeted them, and even conversed for a few moments. God kissed these simple encounters.

It was a good day.
Thanks God.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Beginning of My 28th Year!

Ok- time for the obligatory birthday post!
Here I am - 28 years old today! Wild.
So hard to believe how quickly time is flying by. Today I'm thankful for my life. I'm thankful for the journey. The process. Thankful that God is so gracious and loving. Thankful that He works all things together for good.
I have some amazing friends. I had a late night conversation with one of those friends last night. Isn't it great when God brings people into your life that you can be totally transparent with? We sat outside of Chipotle until 2am. It's those moments and times that I can say I'm loving where I am "at" in life right now. Learning, loving, giving, growing (is that corny?..oh's true!)

Even as a relative 'youngin', I can say that I've learned some things about birthdays (or any other new beginning, for that matter) I've seen the error in proclaiming and exclaiming lofty goals or resolutions. In my experience, it's most likely a recipe for disaster. Trust me, I've done it.. and it has sounded something like this in the past..

" I am..25 years old... gotta get myself together! Ok. First. Gotta lose 50 lbs. Yeah, 50, for sure. Gotta be at the gym at least once a day. Next, I gotta get in the Word everyday. Make that everyday for at least 20 min. Yeah, that sounds good.. and I gotta go on some dates or something this year! Com'on .. somethings gotta give"

I think I adequately portrayed where my thinking has so often gravitated towards in the past. And, honestly, I need to resist, even this very day, not slipping into that thinking.
How amazing is a relationship with Jesus!? I mean, wow, He changes all of that striving.
My focus is on today. Knowing Being with Listening to Holy It's so good and so much better than "trying to do better"!! haha. That never works :)

Well, going to dinner with some of those amazing friends tonight. I got some great cupcakes to bring too (pink lemonade, red velvet, triple chocolate, margarita, pumpkin, white raspberry, and butter rum!! wow!)

"but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint" (PSA 40:31).