Thursday, March 21, 2013

Nancy's So Not Normal Story...

OK, do I have a story for you!  
Today we hosted our ninth His Flower Girls class.  Loved it!  I love all of our classes.  Great group of women.  So cute, so fun, so in love with the Lord.

Well, I sat next to my new friend Nancy at lunch.  She started telling me a story, that I KNEW I had to share with all of you.  Had I kept it to myself, I would be committing a crime.  And let me preface this story by saying that if I hadn't heard it directly from Nancy, I wouldn't have believed it.   It's just not normal.  But then again, God is in the business of blowing normal right out of the water.  So without further ado, I give you "Nancy's So Not Normal Story"...

Nancy was telling me about a woman who started a ministry.  She basically held a retreat in a home and talked about all things relating to the home.  (My kind of gal).  

Well, the retreat was only open to eight women.  Nancy was one of them.  She soon found out that she had to share a bedroom with another girl.  So as they started unpacking, Nancy took from her suitcase a framed photo of her husband and a framed photo of her kids and put them on the nightstand beside her bed.  (Kinda feel a tad bit guilty that I don't travel with photos of my husband and my kids!  Do you guys?) Anyway, as her roommate looked at the photos, Nancy noticed the woman's face looked a little "weird" when she saw her husband's photo.  But she said nothing and neither did Nancy.

A little bit later, the woman says to Nancy, "You know, I need to tell you something.  About four years ago, as I was sitting at home, I felt God tell me to pray for Hollywood.  You know, actors in Hollywood.  I then turned on the t.v. and the first person's face I saw was your husband's.  (Nancy's husband is an actor).  So I prayed for him that night.  And I always wondered why God had me do that."

OK.  Really?  Hello?  Not normal!  
Nancy proceeds to tell me that at that time, her marriage was spiralling out of control and she was praying for her husband as his faith was anything but strong at that time.  To think that God had used this woman (in Canada!) to turn on the t.v. one random night and pray for the first face she saw (Nancy's husband is actor Richard T. Jones and was on Judging Amy at that time) and then have this woman, FOUR YEARS LATER, at a random home ministry thing, share a room with Richard's wife, is just  ... CRAZY! 

Nancy called Richard, told him the story and gave the phone to Richard to speak to the woman.  Needless to say, there wasn't a dry eye in the room.

Unbelievable!  So not normal!

Three things I took away from this story.

1.  God blows me away.  Totally.

2. We've got to listen to His voice the moment we hear it.  And be obedient to His call.

3.  He is alive and working even when we haven't a clue that He is.   

And to think us girls are just getting together to talk about decorating!  Ha!  
God's got bigger plans than that.  I believe He's using our love for decorating to share His love with us.  

And a big P.S.: Today, Nancy and her husband have a beautifully restored marriage.  And when Richard isn't acting, he's preaching.
The End. 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

No More Bad Hair Days, Part II

Well, thank God He gave me hair that I don't like.  Oh, I appreciate that I have it.  I just don't like it.  Never have.  It's been pulled back in a barrette for the last two months as if I'm a seven year old and the sides are too short to stay in a ponytail.  So irritating.  So I always use my sunglasses as a hairband to get the sides off of my face, and actually go to bed most every night with them still sitting on my head.  That's a nice look.  Well, in a couple of months I won't be needing my sunglasses on my head anymore because my doctors have decided to change my chemo treatments and put me back on one of the drugs I originally started out on which makes you lose your hair.  I cried for all of 9 seconds. To my mother-in-law.  (Sorry!)  I think I cried because I remember I looked like a lamb when it grew back in.  And I know I cried because I'm already mourning the loss of my eyelashes.  I love my lashes.  Those were hard for me to lose last time.   But, thank God for an abundance of fake eyelashes everywhere from CVS to Target.  If applied correctly, they even look better than my own.

So after getting the news, I picked up my daughter from school and ran over to Joanne's to buy some cute fabric to make bandanas out of.  Three years ago, I bought cute French country napkins from CostPlus (which I still have), but I thought it would be fun to have her help me pick out a few cute prints.  (See our stash?)  Heck, if I have any leftovers, I can make some cute pillows for my backyard chairs.  And while I'm lounging in the sun, I'll match them!  You know me, I just love to color coordinate.

When I picked up my son from his school, I told him I was going to lose my hair again.  I told him I couldn't wait to come to one of his baseball games as a bald woman, with huge gold hoops on and big red lips. I made him laugh.

Bottom line?  You gotta laugh.

I can't help but think that I'll be able to reach out to so many more women when I actually look like I have cancer.  If I do say so myself, I don't really think I look the part.  Heck, I have hair!  Didn't you think that everyone going through chemo lost their hair?  I did, until I realized that not all drugs make you lose it. Who knew?  I just think that so many more opportunities will come my way when they see a scarf-wearing woman walking their way.  I look forward to that part of it.

So good-bye blow dryer, straightening iron, barrettes, bobby pins, ponytail holders and sunglasses.  I will not miss you!  However, eyelash curler and mascara -- you will be missed.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013


Happy Tuesday!  And I do mean "happy" because my last three days were not.  I ended up in the hospital on Saturday with an obstructed colon.  Jealous?  A cat scan showed that my small intestine was a tad blocked, but the chances were good that it would unblock itself without any procedures.  Good, I thought, because the procedures were either sticking a tube down my nose and into the intestine (no thank you) or surgery (no thank you again).   Each doctor would come into my room and with their fingers crossed would say, "Let's hope it just straightens itself out on its own."  And I would place my hands in prayer and say, "Yep, I'll pray that it does."  Thank you, Lord, for this answer to prayer.   I may need to have a small bowel study performed next week.  And clearly, I'd rather study for the SATs again.   Wouldn't you?  

Anyway,  before the weeks get away from me, I wanted to invite you to Calvary's Bloom Women's Luncheon & Fashion Show on Saturday, April 13th.  Donna and I were asked to speak about His Flower Girls and we're thrilled to do so.  Really thrilled because we actually met at that event just two years ago.  Funny how God works, huh?  

Bloom is an annual event put on by the women's ministry group at Calvary.  The guest speakers are Linda and Jen Barrick, a mother and daughter from Virginia, who know very well that God is real.  Their verse is, "May the God of hope fill you with joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13.  I won't reveal too much about their story, but I can promise you it will be good.  Yeah, not missing that one.

So it's from 10 to 1:30 pm and tickets are $35.  There's also a boutique.  Tickets went on sale on March 1st, so if you're interested, sign up very soon on Calvary's website at because it will sell out.

And if any of you would like to fill in for me for the small bowel study, feel free to let me know!  

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

One Seed...

I know I haven't blogged in a while, but I didn't really have any thing to say.  I've been laying low as I got hit with the flu, and I'm still in recovery mode.  Cancer and the flu are not a good mix.  Yeck.  

But I heard something today while I was at my bible study that I wanted to share with all of you.  
I love stories like this.

So our teacher Michele Telfer (amazing!) is teaching a class on the book of Acts, which in essence, means we're learning about the Holy Spirit.  And she spoke this morning about God using ordinary people to do extraordinary things.  In fact, I heard Michele speak at a conference a few years ago, and this was the first time I had ever heard that phrase before.  The moment I heard it, it sunk into me.  Deep.  And it's never left me.  

Well, she asked our class this question: "Who has ever heard of Mordecai Ham?"  No one's hand went up.

She then began to tell us this story.

Mordecai Ham was a preacher who, back in 1934, held a revival meeting in North Carolina.  Another gentleman knew of the revival meeting and wanted a young boy he knew to go with him.  The 16-year-old boy had no interest in going.  However, in order to entice the teenager, the older gentleman told the boy he could drive his old vegetable truck to the meeting.  Well, what teenager could resist that offer?  So off the two of them went.   

The teenager in the story is Billy Graham.  The older gentleman who brought him to the revival meeting is kind of a mystery.  Oh, his name is probably written down somewhere, but his name is not a household name.  (Neither is Mordecai Ham's for that matter).  Yet he's the one responsible for introducing the young Billy Graham to the Lord.  Kind of a big deal, don't you think?  Dr. Graham is responsible for the salvation of, oh, I don't know, thousands upons thousands of people.  But no one remembers the older gentleman's name.  

And that's the point.  
No one needs to remember your name in order for you to change a life.  

I love stories like this because I think I have been quietly obsessed with becoming "someone" who somewhere changes lives.  I admire so many people who do that.   You know my prayer, "God, use me!  Let's have fun together!  Blow my mind!"  

But the bottom line is that we don't have to be a preacher or a teacher or a writer or an actor to have a platform in which to share our faith.  We could be a guy with an old vegetable truck who offers to take some kid to church.  And look how that one turned out.   

My girlfriend Tara who is also in the class told us about a couple she met on a plane.  They started chatting, they invited her to their church and after she met them there, they bought her a Bible.  Guess what?  She lifted up that very same Bible from close to 20 years ago and said, "This is the Bible they bought me."  Because of that one plane ride, Tara's kids, husband and so many of her friends  have come to know the Lord.  In fact, I watched this girl baptize bunches of girls in a hotel pool at 10 o'clock at night at a retreat just a few years ago.     

Who knows what flowers will bloom when you throw a seed into the ground.
Got one?