WHAT? There's Muslims in Houston???

I got this from a friend in my email box this past week. She and I had gone to Harwin earlier in the year and I bought a pair of sunglasses in this very store. This message was forwarded to me from her (NOTE - NONE of these comments are from her):

Ladies: don’t shop here!! Is this for real??? If so, these A-holes need to be introduced to Texas justice. Do Not do business with shops on Harwin or at least the Central Mall. See below.

This needs to go out to everyone in your address book in Houston and everyone in the U.S. It’s time to stop being pansies sitting on the sidelines. It’s WAR. We need to recognize it and deal with it.

Never saw this reported by the news, disgusting !!!

They hate America even though they have the freedom to do this.
I love that they posted it in Spanish as well…don’t want to leave out the illegals!

This is from a friend of mine in Houston and she was the one who witnessed this sign. That is so disgusting!!!!

I only go to Harwin Drive to buy rhinestones when I don’t have time to order in from my wholesale source. Today I went to the Harwin Central Mall to pick up some crystals.

The very first store that you come to when you walk from the lobby of the building into the shopping area had this sign posted on their door. I couldn’t stay in the building it made me so sick. Feel free to share this with others.

Click on the picture to enlarge it if you want!
...end of email...

I'm sorry, but is there something wrong with me? Because my first reaction was NOT to boycott the store, it was also NOT to bad mouth them, nor was it the angered urge to forward this email to everyone in my address book. My first reaction was... "I wanna go there AGAIN!!" "I wanna shop there every week until I become friends with them."

My second reaction was frustration with people (Christians in particular) who react this way instead of reacting with a burden for people who don't know Christ. How would these guys ever come to have a relationship with Christ if we all reacted this way?

I can certainly tell you that I will be making a lot more trips to Harwin Central Market in the future! You can bank on it!


Progress and Innovation

Post Cereals has a created a series of videos celebrating the fact they haven’t messed with their product since 1892… and the problems with progress and innovation.

My favorite is the second episode, “Speech On Progress” (below).

I love their creativity! These videos make me go hmmmm....To watch the rest of the videos (they are all great, including one I love about advertising!!). You can check out the other episodes by clicking here.


How Sweet It Is!

This post of for my non-COF friends! It's just such exciting news, that I have to share it with you! Our church has become friends and partners with a tribe of people in Burundi, Africa. They are the Batwa. This tribe has suffered many hardships and oppression from it's people, the government of Burundi ridicules them and they are considered outcasts in their society. They are very poor (in material wealth) and they've never really owned anything of value because the government will not allow it.

Our pastor and his children met the Batwa last year on a trip to Africa. In conversations with them, a vision was born between our Pastor and the leadership of the Batwa. We decided to form a friendship together. This past year has been amazing as we have prayed for the Batwa and began to partner with them by ways of education for their children and land.

Last year, just shortly after our friendship began, our Country Director, Kelley Johnson posted this on our blog, dated June 12, 2008:

"I believe that there is a Promised Land for the Batwa. I believe that God is bringing a blessed land into their possession in the coming season. I believe that the season of dislocation will soon come to an end, and they will inherit land....But something is coming for the Batwa… and many of you are part of that promised future. We are praying for, believing for, waiting for the Promised Land!"

Almost a year later on May 6th, 2009 - (just a few short weeks ago) here is her post:

"God has given good land to the Batwa. I was reminded of Isaiah 41, where the prophet speaks of transforming the landscape for the downtrodden. Where their land was parched and no water was in sight, God brings forth springs of water in the valleys, pools of water to nourish the community. God takes what is arid and lifeless, like the land where the Batwa now are consigned to live – and He brings newness! In this case, He is giving the Batwa a land with water, a river and even a source of water. He is transforming their landscape, and transforming their community and its future. Can you imagine what it is like for those who have never had ample water to wash, cook, drink and irrigate to now have springs of water in the heart of their land? This is Good News, this is Jubilee!"


Just this week a team from our church went to Burundi for a visit to our friends, and they are having a party of a lifetime! The Batwa greeted our team, and from the looks of it, the friendship between these sweet people and our church has deepened!




I have tears in my eyes even now as I share about this special friendship! It's amazing how you can love a group of people without even meeting them face to face, and I can't imagine how it will be once we are in each others presence. So I'm counting down the days until it's my turn to go hug those that I already love! Keep praying for my friends in Burundi, that God's favor would continue to shine down on them and that our friendship will grow even sweeter over the years! A year ago they asked us "to not forget them," and we haven't!

For more info on this friendship or any of our other partnerships, please check out our website at http://communityfor.org/

Something to make you smile

In honor of the new iphone 3GS release today:

A joke about Britian's Got Talent:

This kid cracks me up!

he releases a new video every friday at http://juliansmith.tv



I'm still reading "Daily With The King," I just haven't blogged about it much. But today is worth blogging about....

The opening line, "I must always remember that God is not looking merely for men (or women), but for congruent men; not merely disciples (or followers), but congruent disciples." Congruent means: alike, exhibiting harmony of parts, agreeing, according...I would define it as same-ness.

You know when God wanted to show men what He was like, He sent Jesus into the world dressed in human flesh. Jesus was congruent (or alike - same as) the personality of God. John 14:9 - Jesus talking..."He who has seen Me has seen the Father."

So could congruency be God's method of using a life to explain a principle or truth? For example...nowhere in the Bible is there a textbook on faith, but the Bible presents Abel, Enoch, Noah, and Abraham to show what faith is, by the way they lived. When God wanted to show us what His love was like, He made it congruent in the death of His son on the cross for us.

We, as Christians, are expected to show the world who Jesus is by our lives. Philippians 1:27 says "Conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ." The gospel is simply a collection of words, terms, and phrases...all of which are difficult to understand unless they are made clear by someone's life. So when a person who doesn't know Christ looks at us, they should be able to see a connection between what we are and what the gospel is saying.

Dear Jesus...what parts of me do not look like you?


Social Media

I'm impressed with the use of Social Media when it's used for good! I love the organization Invisible Children and their cause, but more than that, I'm extremely impressed at their excellent use of social media and the web to connect this generation to make a difference in the world! I think churches and organizations need to get on board....this is the next generation! Check out the video!


Creative Marketing :)

I LOVE when Companies are creative in their marketing strategies! This is just funny! I found this on a blog I follow about Church Marketing. They actually say they will design a billboard for free to recreate this from the church standpoint if anyone was up for it...lol. You can check out the original post here.

You can click the photo to see it more closely and read the signs!


How Much Do You Have To Hate Someone

Today we were talking in production meeting about praying for people we would try to invest in who don't know Christ....asking God to bring those people around us and to us and to our minds. Then tonight I came across this video on a blog that I follow and thought it was profound, and a neat insight into a perspective that I'm not always around....thought I'd share it!

“How much do you have to hate someone to believe that everlasting life is possible and not tell someone about that.” One of the highlights from this clip from Penn, a well known atheist, who talks about someone who gives him a bible. As much as I’m a much bigger advocate of creating relationships than simply handing out a bible (and I loathe tracts) and running this is a good lesson in how to do it right, but more importantly it’s such a great view from an angle that you and I don’t get to experience often.


No Mo Oatmeal...

So typically on Fridays Donald, Matthew, Robin and I meet up at the church to talk production and pray a little together. Well, this past Friday Donald and Robin were sick, so it was just Matthew and I. He was over working on one of his many computers and I was on my macbook across the room.

Donald sent me an IM asking about a graphic and then he sent me another IM saying this was the latest forward from his brother. It was a hysterical youtube link about "No Mo Breakfast..." Donald laughed and was joking around saying we could play it at our new 8:30 AM service. So I sat and watched the whole thing through. I IM'ed Donald back and said, "Dude, where does he find this stuff..." and to which Donald replied, "I have NO idea..." We went on about how the girl looked half asleep...etc...laughing....

Well about that time Matthew rolls his chair across the room to see what we're talking about and I restart the video for him to watch and again we are laughing out loud...then in a few minutes into it, Matthew looks up to the info bar on youtube and says to me, "hey, isn't that your hometown?"

At that point I about LOST it laughing! It was the "Mornin' Show" in Tupelo...hahaha! I laughed sooo hard and IM'ed Donald back to say, "Hey, man, that video is from my hometown...hahaha!" Then I said, "See why I left!" (only kidding Tupelo, I love you!) But it was hysterical. Now I know why the lady looks half asleep, it's because she probably was, I know the Mornin' show used to be taped like at 4am or something...hahaha!

So here it is for your enjoyment, a little piece of Tupelo, Mississippi!! Ha! (It's not all like that! ha!)


What are we FOR?

I have an acquaintance who posted this on her blogsite and it brought me to tears! I don't think I need to give a long commentary about it, it pretty much speaks for itself. I wish we as Christians were known more for what we are FOR, instead of what we are AGAINST...

to me, this is a much more beautiful picture of Christ than what we can sometimes represent...


Wies Family Singing on Stage

COF supports a Foster home with 12 Fetal Alcohol syndrome children. They are precious to us. They have been wanting to sing on stage for quite some time. So we put it together this Christmas. As I was laughing and crying at the same time, I was thinking how sweet it was to God's ears to hear these children singing to him..."You've stolen my heart, yes you have. You've stolen my heart, yes you have. You wiped away the stains, and broke away the chains, yes you have!" Check out the video!

Thanks Donald and our Worship Leaders, band and tech crew for staying over and making this happen for them on Christmas Eve! You guys are awesome to work with!