Monday, July 19, 2010


The year was 1985 and I looked the part, fluorescent clothes (even make-up), uniquely 80s layered hair, ultra-teased with tons of Aquanet hairspray, thick belts, matching socks, earrings in every color and O-rings (remember Madonna wore them?). I probably would have never attempted some of what I did had I not been in the best company I had ever been in my whole life.
8th grade prom 1985 - me in the blue dress

The previous year I had come out of a school that was, by today’s standards, abusive to put it mildly and getting no better as I got older. After begging my mom to send me to another school and seeing she was not going to budge, I played the only card I had not played – I want to go live with my father! It was March I think and I was on a plane to Atlanta and I was going to be enrolled in public school for the first time in my life. Because I was the “new” kid from Miami, I was of interest to many. I made lots of friends, fast, I had only a handful in the school I left behind, despite my best efforts to “fit in”. After completing 7th grade I was on my way to high school, that is how it worked in the school district my dad lived in. My mother wanted me to come home and I said I would not go back to “that school”, so she agreed to let me attend another private school started by my first grade teacher.

Just for some background, I was terrified of school, I cried everyday, even some in college. In first grade I had Mrs. Santos, so it was better and my best friend Tina was in my class too. We were teacher’s pets, so we had no other friends, but that was okay because we had each other. Anyway, Mrs. Santos was the most loving woman I had ever met and I enjoyed being around and her and felt somewhat normal and safe in her presence.

Fast forward, it’s now 1984 and I am on my way to Mrs. Santos' school. She is the founder, principal and the 8th grade teacher. Now in my mind it just didn’t get any better than this, except that our 8th grade class was 20 strong and we were ALL friends. It was the best year of schooling for me and probably the happiest I ever was. Again, I felt loved and safe everyday! The school only went to 8th grade that meant graduation was inevitable. I was valedictorian for our class and had my speech prepared, but I cried the whole time, so Mrs. Santos read it. Everyone cried, and I mean cried a lot! We were like family and we were all going to different schools, I was actually moving about a half hour away. It was not a happy day!

Since 1985 I have kept in touch with Mrs. Santos yearly. Christmas cards, letters, visits and birth announcements. Our relationship has changed over the years as it should now that I am an adult. I have had two opportunities to see her this year. In February I took my kids to the school and showed them around and they got to meet her and her husband. It was a wonderful time. Then she said, that they would be having a tribute to my class this year at graduation and prom because it was the 25th anniversary of our graduation and we were the first graduating class. I was so excited. I began to feel the Lord’s gentle nudging that this was Him working.

Mrs. Santos invited me to give my speech from '85 at graduation and I was excited to have the opportunity, but even more excited when she gave me her blessing to say “whatever you want”. The Lord’s hand was moving. In prayer He lead me to verses of encouragement for the graduates. I asked her if she wanted me to tell her what I was going to say and she said she did not need to see it ahead of time.

I had the awesome opportunity to meet her, her family and the 8th grade graduates for a weekend of fun at Busch Gardens and Adventure Island just before graduation.

I was able to get in touch with a few friends from my graduating class and they were going to be at graduation too. It was thrilling! I had Isabella and Annais with me, which made it extra special.

On the drive down, I listened to Francis Chan’s Crazy Love and it solidified a lot of what I heard the Lord speaking to my heart. My kids and I had prayer time the day before and asked the Lord to prepare hearts for what He had to say.

Tuesday morning before graduation as I got ready the Lord spoke to me and said, “You were valedictorian 25 years ago because I have something to say to these people TODAY.” Wow, knock me over! This made it all the more exciting because my purpose was sure.

When Mrs. Santos introduced me she said that she was not giving a speech that day, that I was giving the principal’s address. Did you catch that? A high-school dropout with some college, the principal’s address? This is how God works. He instantly put me in position of authority and although most people there didn’t know me, I now had their attention. They would HEAR His word. She also said that I was here to give them a message of HOPE. Remember she did not know what I was going to say. So, for the first time I gave my speech, at least parts of it. I also shared the verses the Lord gave me and I told them that He loved them. That He died for them, individually and He has a purpose and a plan, a good one, for each of them. I told them 25 years ago I needed a family and the Lord sets the lonely in families and the Lord had brought me to that school. I told them how He rescued me out of deep waters because He delighted in me and how He delights in them. I told them their lives were before them and mine was still before me - in Him. I also shared with them what the Lord had spoken to my heart that morning, that HE had a message for them. I only spoke 8-10 minutes, but as I took my seat I was humbled by the opportunity the Lord gave me to share with people that I love. Best of all my oldest two were a part of all this and watched God work.

I went out to lunch with my two best friends from 8th grade and they both told me they were proud of me, even one of their husbands told me. I just smiled because I knew it was the Lord. They had nothing to be proud of me for. They don’t know what kind of house I live in, car I drive or much else about me for that matter, but they said they were proud. That just doesn’t “happen”. The world only tells us they are proud of us when we produce evidence that we are worthy of their praise. The only thing I shared with them was His love and now that - that is something to be PROUD of!

Who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion,who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's - Psalm 103:4-5

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us Eph 3:20

So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10

Sunday, July 18, 2010


Here is a beautiful picture of Lekeshia from her I See You Sis debut yesterday in Marietta. It was a wonderful event full encouragement, love and possibilities...

The winners of the I See You Sis giveaway are Mari from My Little Corner of the World and Sara from Splashin' Glory.

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Thursday, July 8, 2010


A couple of months ago a friend asked me to bring tea and set up a table at her customer appreciation party. I knew it would be a great event, but I never expected a divine appointment. The lady setting up next to me, Lekeshia, had a sign that said “I See You Sis”, so you know I had to find out what she was doing, which led to several short conversations throughout the afternoon. I was ignited by her passion for the Lord and her passion for women. In an age of social networking and text messaging, she is taking it “old school”. I’ll let her explain.

How did you come up with the idea for I See You Sis?
I would like to say, I came up with the idea. However, God gave it to me through a wonderful experience. In April 2008, while working out at Bally Total Fitness (Marietta, GA) I was caught-off guard by a zealous woman. While on my treadmill, across the room there she was, running with every fiber in her being. Ouch! I got convicted. Here I was a former track athlete with a free membership, mp3 player and a football/track coach as a work out partner. And there she ran alone, all alone with only her clothes and a water bottle. (Prior to this conviction, I was walking on the treadmill cruising on former muscle memory and family genetics.) Immediately I turned my speed up until I was finishing my 35 minute run at speed 6 on an incline of 3. Wow! in less than 2 hours at the gym; I silently meet a woman that would change my life and the life of many women and girls. I never spoke to this woman of inspiration. At the time, I was too into my insecurities to approach her with words of encouragement. Later she left and I remained there inspired. Before my work out ended, all I could think of was "I see you sis". As I kept repeating it, the vision for this company began to flow simultaneously.

Tell us about the concept of “I See You Sis”
(KJV) Matthew 12:50 "For whosoever does the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother and sister , and mother." The "I" in I see you sis is the voice of Jesus Christ. In us He lives and as vessels we are used to do the works of the kingdom. One which is to encourage positively in love and truth, to build each other up.

What are your goals, hopes or dreams for this ministry?
Each one Inspires. Encourage one Individual. As stated in my motto, I vision for women and girls to live on purpose, in purpose to inspire those in need. And in turn, encourage others to encourage those who has inspired them. This year I look forward to faithfully being apart of 1,000,000 letters of encouragement shared across the globe. As well as motivate and give purpose for people re-embrace the most intimate form of communication; writing!

Share a testimony or two that you have received since starting this ministry?
I believe in sowing. And before I sold any letters, I wrote to 50 women. Many responded back with encouragement to continue sharing this opportunity with others. It helped them during their not so sunny days. They reread their letters to get them over the hump. A letter of encouragement is like a hug to someone who needs comfort or a smile.

How can others get involved?
My dollar menu consist of one item that is fat-free, zero calories and reduces weight. $1 to get involved is all it takes. Others can get involved by sending out "I see you sis" letters to any woman or girl. And yes! Men can get involved too. And, you'll have a blank card and envelope embodying the "I see you sis" logo and motto.

So, it's simple. Buy an "I See You Sis" card and send to a woman or girl you want to encourage or send out your own "I See You Sis" letter to any woman or girl.

How can people contact you?
I am most certainly available in 4 ways. - P.O. Box 680993 Marietta GA 30068 - or my favorite, 404-642-2300. Since my website is in progress and many will desire to purchase I see you sis letters. Use any form of contact and we'll make it happen. Preferably by phone or mail.

We are offering a giveaway of five I See You Sis cards to two random winners. Please leave a comment to be entered to win. You can just leave a comment or share how a personal handwritten note has encouraged you or how the Lord has used good old fashioned communication to bless you or someone you know. I usually do not do this, but I feel so strongly about this message that I am offering a second entry to you if you will post about this giveaway on your blog and a third entry if you post about it on Facebook with a link to I See You Sis Facebook page. Make sure you link directly back to this post. We need a way to contact you, if you have to leave an email address, leave it as email (@) bellsouth (dot) net to prevent spam.

Winner will be selected on July 18th!

If you are the not one of the lucky winners, please contact Lekeshia to be a part of this awesome ministry.

Visit Amy at Signs, Mirales and Wonders for more great music!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


If you missed the previous post Turning Point click here

The sermon on Mother’s Day was Trust, specifically trusting God! Just what I needed to hear, it shook up stuff in me and when it all settled things were a little clearer, Praise God. The scripture was from Jeremiah 17:5-8:

This is what the LORD says:
"Cursed is the one who trusts in man,
who depends on flesh for his strength
and whose heart turns away from the LORD.
He will be like a bush in the wastelands;
he will not see prosperity when it comes.
He will dwell in the parched places of the desert,
in a salt land where no one lives.
"But blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD,
whose confidence is in him.
He will be like a tree planted by the water
that sends out its roots by the stream.
It does not fear when heat comes;
its leaves are always green.
It has no worries in a year of drought
and never fails to bear fruit."

The last verse stands out to me because as you remember, Psalm 1 – trees planted by streams of water – was the scripture and theme the Lord gave me for our homeschool year. A couple of weeks before this sermon, one of the pastor’s wives handed me this:

She said she wasn’t sure what it meant, but I knew immediately, it was the Lord confirming His word to me.

This sermon on trusting Him helped me link Psalm 1 and Jeremiah 17, specifically the tree planted by streams of water, together with trusting Him. So, that is what He has been trying to teach me all year?! I love when things come together, even if it took me an entire school year - better late than never. I cannot be a tree planted by streams of water that does not fear when heat comes if I do not trust Him.

I’ve mentioned before that this has been a most difficult year and I have struggled a lot spiritually, but a lot of that stems from not trusting God. The pastor said, “The God who made all things, makes all things new.” I needed to hear that and maybe you do too wherever you’re at today.

A friend called a couple of months ago and told me she had to talk to me about a dream she had about us. She said that her and I were together and we were running from a combine. We were hiding in a church basement to escape this combine. When sharing this with her husband he pointed out to her that combines are used to sift wheat from chaff. I told her that it was just like us to run! We have both been dealing with fear and anxiety this year, so running would be apropos. I knew the Lord was telling both of us something. He was doing something and He was doing something deep and we needed to stop running and let Him do it.

In his sermon the pastor said, “We run away from things in our life that would produce trust in us.” "Huh, you talking to me?", I I crawled under the seat.

If I run from the combine (the Lord), the sifting of the good from the bad, then I am not putting myself in a position to trust in God. I run because the sifting is painful and I’m afraid of pain, especially emotional. If I run and everything stays the same I do not see what God wants to do. I stay in my fear and other the stuff that goes with it and I continue not trusting Him. It’s a pretty vicious cycle if you ask me, one that I’d rather be done with for good. So, I resigned myself to go through the fire or the pruning if you will, I’m sitting still in the field waiting for the combine.

Before we left this church almost two years ago I began to trust so much in the church, pastors and people (of course I did not know I was doing this at the time), God had to take me out of there and get me totally dependent on Him, so I would learn to trust Him and only Him. Remember I felt released to return when I recognized and repented for those things – it took a year and a half.

Learning to trust will produce the things in you that you need to survive any storm and walk through any fire. It will produce gratitude. It will produce joy. It will bring peace.” Tom Tanner

The pastor asked a tough question:

Where do you go or to whom do you turn when it comes to meeting the deepest needs of your life?

Acceptance (knowing that you are cared for loved and wanted)
Security (knowing that you are safe, protected and provided for)
Identity (believing that you are special and significant)
Purpose (believing that you are put here for a reason)

Ugh, he got me again! This is where the Lord began speaking to me about my misguided expectations of the church and my husband.

All these needs are well and good, but we MUST go to God first! I’m not sure what all this looks like, but I know that it is true. Read the following exhortation that ended the sermon and it is the merry-go-round that has been my life for almost two years.

When we trust in people or we trust in things then our security is dependant upon someone or something that we cannot predict we cannot control and whose resources are limited and the result is inconsistency and frustration. One day we may feel good the next day we’ll feel bad the next day we’ll feel good the next day we’ll feel bad and that’s the way it works when you choose to trust in people or things for your security. When you choose to trust in people or things for your identity then you’re identity will come more than likely from one of two places either from what you do or what people say about you and both of those things will get you into trouble. Because your significance and your identity will depend on circumstances and responses that you can’t control.. When you depend on acceptance when you look to other people or things for acceptance your acceptance is based on gaining approval from others which leads to a life of performance. You will find that you will do just about anything to gain acceptance and in trying to gain acceptance you will in fact loose your identity. When you look to people or things for your purpose then your purpose becomes confused by changing circumstances and by the changing opinions of both your critics and your friends. When you trust in God and you look to Him for all of these things then your security is dependant upon one who is totally faithful and whose resources infinite unlimited. Your identity is found in one who will never fail you, never forsake you and who has pledged to love you forever. Your acceptance is found in one who knows you completely and loves you unconditionally. Your purpose is grounded and rooted in God’s plan for you, not man’s opinion of you.

I don’t know what this trust thing looks like, but I am committed to trusting God to work this out in me. I trust in Him to walk alongside me on this journey and remove things that hinder me trusting Him and place things in me that enhance me trusting Him. The good news is because I am trusting Him I don't have to figure this out, He will! Amen to that!

During the sermon the pastor asked someone this question, “Why did Peter warm his hands in the enemies fire?” Mark 14:54 and the answer was, “because his hands were cold.” He had a real need, he just went to the wrong place to get his needs met, so it is with me and I for one am tired of warming my hands in enemy fire because I ALWAYS get burned!!!

You can hear the sermon in its entirety here click on May 9, 2010

Trusting God,

Saturday, July 3, 2010


As I sat in my first of two different services on Mother’s Day I never expected to be called to action. As I’ve mentioned before one of the songs that morning was called Potter’s Wheel by Daniel Bashta and the words are:

Make me
Shape me
Into everything that You want me to be

Make me
Shape me
Into everything that You want me to be and more

So place me on the potter’s wheel
Spin me until
There’s nothing left but You in my life
Cause brokenness is what I want
So do a work Yeah in my heart
So when You look at me
You see Your reflection

I sang those words with a deep desire for God to do the things in my heart that the song talks about. Worship is the biggest part of my relationship with God. It has become an act of prayer for me, it is where I connect with Him in deep and intimate ways and cry out to Him from the depths of my heart and spirit. It is where I truly see Him in all His glory, majesty and splendor. It doesn’t matter that I can’t carry a tune, I sing anyway! I just did not expect His first answer to come just after communion.

In a post a while back I talked about seasons and how I have tendency to go back to old seasons, which by the way is disobedience. I do it because I’m afraid, which by the way is a lack of trust. See how this is all fitting together? Trust and obey, there is no other way. Amazing how He does that. Anyway, in the post about seasons I talked about being wounded as a result of my disobedience. Well, shortly after that post the Lord told me to go to that person and repent and ask for forgiveness. I talked to him and told him I needed to come see him, but have not done it yet. I have a good relationship with him, so I am completely comfortable with doing this, but on Mother’s Day the Lord called me to repent not to that person (he wasn’t there), but to the senior pastor (who I do not have a relationship with) much more difficult. Because the Lord totally blew me away with the card I sent to Nita I was quick to obey, no hesitation or stalling this time. After the service I told my husband I would be right back and I headed straight for the pastor. I was already crying when I got there. His sermon that day was on trusting God and I realized that for a long time I had trusted the church, pastors, people, etc. more than I trusted God. I harbored anger, bitterness and unforgiveness towards them for things they were never supposed to do in the first place. So, I told him all this and repented to him and asked his forgiveness. He said he was sorry and I said I was sorry too and that was the end of that, but I knew something shifted in me spiritually at that moment.

I still plan on speaking to the other pastors, but I was obedient to what God told me to do that day. It released me and I felt lighter leaving. We are now back at the church, we’ve come full circle and I believe that was key in God releasing us to be back there. It is like coming home. I never wanted to leave in the first place and was SLOW to leave and, you guessed it, OBEY. I’ll share more about that next time because I don’t want this post to be too long and lose anyone. I will also share highlights of his sermon on trusting God, you don’t want to miss it.

God is faithful and trustworthy and ALWAYS has our best interest at heart.

Romans 2:4 Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?

Friday, July 2, 2010


Follow-up to yesterday's post read first

The Lord reminded me of a very important lesson I left out from yesterday’s post. As I attempted to hold onto something that was not mine, the Lord asked me what else I was holding onto? What? Me? “Yes, you are holding onto many things that don’t belong to you!” Ouch! Of course, He was right and after careful examination this is what I came up with.

I hold onto behaviors that are not pleasing to the Lord, but since I don’t trust Him I rely on these behaviors to keep me “safe”. In reality I am not “safe” just deeper in bondage. A pastor approached me once and said, “The Lord says that the fear will not keep you safe, He will.” That is truth, but I hold onto the fear for dear life although the Lord says “FEAR NOT” in His word I think 365 times. I’m a slow learner sometimes.

I hold onto things because I am afraid of lacking. God says in His Word, “My people shall lack no good thing.” I have a hard time with that because of my trust issue, but I’m working on that. I will keep certain things in case I need them someday instead of trusting His provision. My God shall supply all my needs according to His riches in Glory.

I hold onto relationships, ones that are dead or dying simply because I don’t want to let go or am afraid to let go. I was reminded of this recently when talking to a friend from elementary school. We haven’t spoken in over 20 years and she never asked me one question about me, but proceeded to talk about herself. She was no different back then, but I held onto the relationship. It made me sad that I was willing to maintain a relationship like that just to have a “friend”.

We all hold onto things that the Lord would rather see us let go of. Things that keep us from His BEST for us, things that keep us from His BLESSINGS, things that keep us from His WILL for our lives. I’m still recognizing things that I’m holding onto and asking Him to show me how to let go, because I cannot do it on my own.

I am reminded again of the blessing of obedience, if the Lord says let it go then I can let go in total peace and trust! Trust and obey, there is no other way.

Thursday, July 1, 2010


Trust and obey, for there’s no other way
To be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.

Words from a hymn written in 1887, but the words and message are timeless!

If I really sit down and think about why I do not obey, it usually comes down to a lack of trust.

At the end of March I took Judah for prayer for his ear infections. It had been a couple of years since I had been to that particular church’s prayer night. After they were done praying for me and Judah a lady called me over and handed me two pictures that she had painted for me while I was receiving prayer.

(Sorry for the terrible picture, I tried taking it over and over again. The text says, "I have set angels in charge over you. You are never alone.")

This one immediately ministered to me because Isabella had asked me to read the story of Jesus’ temptation in the desert before I left the house. For the first time the last line really stood out to me and became rhema:

Matthew 4:11 Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him.

The next picture ministered to me for a moment and I cried, but the Lord told me this one was not for me and He told me who it was for.

A little girl approached me as I left and handed me yet another painting (above) and said that it was “the Lord’s presence”. Needless to say I was extremely blessed and full leaving there that night. I came home and taped the two pictures from the lady to my bathroom mirror and gave the one from the little girl to Isabella.

The Lord kept gently reminding me to send the one of the jar with tears to someone else. I hesitated, I stalled, I flat out disobeyed. I wanted that for myself, I wanted the constant reminder that He sees ME. I could not let go of that tangible reminder. I was feeling forgotten by God, unseen, desperate for Him and I did NOT trust Him.

About a month later I knew that I would be seeing the lady who the picture was for, so I sat down with the picture, a card and a pen. I cried. I mean really cried. I wrote to her telling her that the Lord said this was for her and that I did not want to give it to her, but He was telling me to trust Him. I put the picture in the card and sealed the envelope and headed to the meeting. She was not there. I asked someone if they would see her and they said they would not – maybe I could just keep it after all? No! I addressed it and put it in the mailbox. My well meaning son brought me the mail, not really, it was just the card that I had put in there. Hmmm, maybe I could still keep it? No! I explained to him that it was outgoing mail and asked him to take it back. Two days later I read this (please click on the link and read Nita's post, it is overwhelming). I was overwhelmed with the goodness of God, I cried and cried. The blessing for me was not in the keeping of that which did not belong to me, but the giving it away. Despite my disobedience the Lord used that picture at the perfect time to bless Nita and Drew. I was left speechless at what the Lord did.

You know what the message was at the meeting that night, the night that I took the picture to its rightful owner...That God in the Old Testament is El Roi, THE GOD WHO SEES.

This is not to puff myself up or pat myself on the back for my obedience, I just want to share the result of obedience (even delayed obedience). The Lord used this situation to show me that the blessing is in the obedience. He was preparing me for an even greater task just a week later…I’ll share that next time.

Until then, do you really trust Him? Are you obeying Him? If not, why not? The more I learn to trust Him the easier it is to obey Him especially when I see how He took my mustard seed and multiplied it!

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