Wednesday, September 23, 2009

AACC Conference

My time at the American Association of Christian Counselors Conference was fantastic!
There were many well-known speakers and authors like John Piper, Dr. Cloud, Joni Erickson Tada, Drs. Les & Leslie Parrott, Dr. Amen...and so many more! Our worship leaders were Charles Billingsley, Starfield, Mandisa, Amy Grant, and Michael O'Brien> praise the Lord! Our schedule was packed with plenary sessions and workshops.
My favorite plenary session was with Joni Erickson. There she was on stage, in her wheelchair, hardly being able to move, but testifying of God's goodness, faithfulness, and grace. She displayed and encouraged a heart of thankfulness, for every single thing. "I'm in this wheelchair day in and day out, but praise God I can still talk and do ministry." Wow.
The workshops that I most enjoyed were on relationships :) One was called "Trading Places" with Drs. Les and Leslie Parrott. They talked about how, for real relationships to work, empathy is required. There is even scientific evidence of what a difference empathy makes. Another session with Dr. Sharon May was on what happens in the brain and body when a fight takes place. Wow, talk about interesting!! It is when information gets to our amygdala that makes us either fight back or run away. But if we talk our amygdala out of the "emergency" status, we can handle the conflict/fight/situation much more logically and calmly. So amazing.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Toccoa in Disarray in Turbulent Rain!

Many waters cannot quench love;
rivers cannot wash it away. ~ Song of Solomon 8:7

Well, it's been an exciting day in Toccoa, GA!
I've been in Nashville for the last four days, but apparently it has been raining a lot in the last few days. This morning I allowed myself the sweet lux
ury of snoozing in bed for an extra hour under the restful tapping of
rain on the tin roof. What a delightful welcome to the Lord's day!
After an amazing lunch of potato salad, corn, and chicken, I could no longer hold the excitement in, but I had to go experience this non-stop rain for myself.
Collecting a few friends on the way, I geared up in shorts and rain boots, and we went out to explore what we may find. Wow, did we find some adventure!
We found rivers overflowing,

the "flood plains" quite flooded, the soccer field having a hard time draining, and, of course, the roads sweeping dirt, trash, and Georgia clay :)
The Falls were gated shut, but we saw trees in the river and road. Tonight, I got to tour Toccoa from inside a vehicle to assess the damage of the rain...Some riverbanks were washed away, back-gardens no more, ponds merged, sand-bags present to prevent even more damaged, families looking out windows...
And guess what else I saw? My favorite part: college kids playing out in the rain!! Everyone is curious to see what the rain did.
Today reminded me of the Flood in 1977 at Toccoa Falls College. If it's only been raining for 24 hours and everything is so overwhelmed with water already, I cannot imagine what it was like to have the dam break...So sad.

Monday, September 14, 2009

An obvious leader obviously serving

This morning I saw one of Toccoa Falls College's alumni working in the cafeteria. Kent was always one to brighten one's day with laughter, God's Word, and his passion for life. He knows the Bible very well and loves to disciple younger men in the ways of the Lord. It is so cool to see this leader now serving the students at TFC by serving lunch, wiping tables, and still encouraging people in the Lord and in joy. That, to me, is a picture of true servant leadership.

Monday, September 7, 2009

My attempt at blogging

I have to be honest...I never thought blogging was for me.
Because I thought that I would never take the time to write it, that I would never have anything substantial to write about, that no one would ever read what I write anyway, and that nothing would come of it anyway.
Well, for a few reasons, I've changed my mind, the most notable being that through a blog, I can write more than just updates in life (as I do in newsletters). I can write out thoughts, ideas, and questions and perhaps get some feedback. Or blogging can just provide me a platform on which to reflect on the day, what I encountered, and what I'm learning. It is a way for you to stay in closer touch with me so that you can pray for me more specifically and know more of what's going on.
In no way, however, do I want blogging to replace my more intimate ways of communication with people. I NEED to be called, emailed, hugged, and encouraged in different ways to continue on this life's journey of mine.
Thank you for being a part of it. Thank you for including me in your time, life, and prayers. Thanks for making my life's journey a member of yours'.