Friday, February 19, 2010

More of you God and Less of me... do I really mean it??

As you may know, we are currently 3 days into the season of Lent... a period in the Christian calendar that leads up to our celebration of Easter (Christ is Risen!!! Risen In Deed!!)... Anyways, part of Lent is taking up spiritual practices or sacrifices that lead us deeper into our true need for a savior. This year I am not giving up anything specifically, but am praying the prayer... "God, more of you and less of me." 

To help me actually live into this prayer I am reading a devotional with several others from my church family... The title is "From Fear to Love"...

I would say that I'm not afraid of much... at least not on the surface, so this should be an easy one for me right?? NOPE... It just so happens that at the same time I am currently facing several major freak outs areas ... just ask me and I'll tell you, but will spare the internets all the details!!

In the midst of my angst... I woke up and read this... thanks Henry Nouwen.... (or God's spirit speaking through the words you wrote)

Then your light shall break forth like the dawn, and your healing shall spring up quickly. Isaiah 58:8

In the light of Divine Love, we are encouraged to enter into our deepest hearts, often hidden even to ourselves. There we actually touch God's light, and discover more and more our desire for that presence within. It's where we experience God saying, "I love you so deeply. I want to be present to you in all your 'lost' places so you will know not just your lostness but also in how many places I long to find you." 

This is an exercise of communion: to sit with God in the inner chapel of your heart and to say, "I've heard so often of your love but I just don't believe it. Mostly I believe that you only wish to judge me, but today I'll remain here in your loving presence, and present myself to you in all my vulnerability." Heart speaks to heart. 

This is not to say, "Well, you'd better start thinking about how awfully dissipated and resentful you are. No! This is to say, "When your're in touch with your dissipation and resentment, you're in touch with the very places that God waits to touch in you more deeply, and to heal you." 

Forgiving God, I fear to stop. I need love and want love, but I fear what you might ask of me... 

I want so badly to listen and enter into the fear and embrace what God is doing inside of me and around me. Here we go... 37 more days... what else will I learn??

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Valentines Day & Justice

Valentines Day is just around the corner and many of us will be receiving and giving chocolates to loved ones. I LOVE Dark Chocolate, not so crazy about the milk, and white can be good from time to time, but I hope to receive some chocolate on this special day... hint, hint!!

However, I don't want to be a part of suffering as I am enjoying my chocolate.

Did you know that slave and child labor is often used in the production of chocolate? Thankfully advocates for human rights have put together resources to help us, the average consumer, speak with our pocket books.

Here are just a few of the products I would suggest staying away from :
Godiva (sad I know) ... If you love Godiva, let them know you want change (D-)
Russel Stover... one of my favorites growing up (D)

At least one I recommend:

Divine (A-).. You can find these at Ten Thousand Villages and a few other stores.

Also, Nestle is getting better (C)... they have made a lot of progress over the past year or so

To find out more about the rating systems and other products visit:

Happy Valentines Day!!!

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Hands that Heal Overview Training

One of my passions is seeing women and children in sexual bondage become free. A few years ago several Jubilee members were trained in the Hands that Heal Curriculum. Read below for details... we will soon be hosting a brief training for community members interested in finding out more about sex trafficking and working with survivors. 

Staggering numbers of women and children are forced into the sex trafficking industry to be modern day sex slaves. This is shocking and appalling. Unfortunately, their battle is not won after leaving the sex industry. Aftercare for victims of sex trafficking is an enormous challenge, as God uses His people to help these survivors rebuild and reconstruct their broken lives.

Join us on Sat. February 27th at Visio Dei Church for a training concerning the redemptive and exciting process of caring for survivors of sex trafficking. We will be using an international curriculum called Hands that Heal. The training is from 8:30AM-3PM with an hour break for lunch. Training is free, but please register and direct questions to

What? One day overview Hands that Heal Training for Victims of Sex Trafficking
When? Feb. 27th 8:30AM-3PM
Where? Visio Dei Church 524 E. Whitaker Mill Rd. Raleigh, NC 27608

Free, Please let us know you are coming