Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Therapy

In about ten minutes we will be leaving to go to our second care home ministry today.  I love Tuesdays because it is an opportunity for us to minister to people who cannot come to our church but are often VERY hungry for the Word of God.  My husband and I agree that often we sense the Spirit of the Lord moving in the care homes because there are people there who come expecting to hear from the Lord.  We especially love this ministry now because we have two little girls who are special therapy to the residents.  Every now and then I have to go without them and every time this happens they always say "Where are the girls?". As if to say, "Oh, it's just you today."  Some have cautioned me not to take my girls into places like that; but my response is to think about all the grandmothers who reside in these facilities who never or seldom ever see their grandchildren.  My girls have several adopted grandparents, aunt, and uncles.  Plus people are hearing the word of God.  Besides all this prayer and soap and water still work. 

Until next time,

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Busy, Busy, Busy

This year has been an extremely busy one thus far.  That is a good thing.  Recently we heard a preacher challenge the congregation to get worn out for the Lord, I think my husband decided to take that challenge.  This past week we had our first ever conference, The Faith, Love and Family Conference, which went extremely well.  Saturday my husband took a van full of our people to a youth rally in Conway, Arkansas while I took the girls to a birthday party.  Sunday was our church's five year anniversary service.  What a wonderful Sunday it was!  We had over fifty and maybe even sixty people in attendance.  I was so busy I didn't take a count; but every pew was almost full!  This week we get a break; but next week we head to Virginia for another missions conference.  Please pray with us that the Lord will bless us with safety to and from the conference and that we will be a blessing to the people of the church we are going to.  This particular conference is special to us because it is the church of the pastor who was my husband's first independent baptist pastor in Marysville, CA so many years ago, Pastor Brad Weniger. 
Until next time,

Thursday, February 16, 2012

HEEELP!

I heard this story last week at a conference we were in and wanted to share it with you.  We know an older couple who just started a church like ours in a neighboring town.  They are former missionaries who had to come back home to take care some medical issues with family.  Well, they have a son and daughter in law (a white couple) who cannot have children; so they have decided to adopt.  Thus far they have adopted one Black young boy (age three) who is just so adorable.  They are in the process of adopting a little Asian boy as well.  Sometimes when you adopt you get children with interesting habits.  This little boy has one that I think is HILARIOUS.  One day as the mom was getting the little boy out of the car seat and getting ready to go into Wal-mart he started helling, "HELP!, HELP!, HELP!" at the top of his lungs.  She finally got him to calm down and the day went on with no other hiccups; but the next time they went shopping he did the same thing, "HELP!, HELP!, HELP!".  (Keep in mind that this is a White parent with a Black son.)  She said she finally had to start spanking him for doing that.  She has also now decided to start carrying around her proof of adoption papers with her just in case. 

Until next time,

Faith, Love, and Family

Last night was the first night of our first annual Faith,  Love and Family conference.  I thoroughly enjoyed it!  Pastor Patterson of Jacksonville Baptist Temple preached for us and he will be speaking tonight as well.  Bro. Patterson preached about how Adam chose Eve over the Lord when he decided to eat the fruit from the forbidden tree, how that if your home doesn't have the Lord there cannot be harmony and peace in it, and how that God introduced grace in the garden (to be continued tonight!).  In attendance we had one of our faithful members, one adult visitor and several of our children.  After the meeting as Raymond was dropping off the children he said they had some interesting conversations.  One I am excited about sharing with you today.  We will call the young boy (age 10) Carl.

Carl:          He is a good preacher!
Raymond:  Yes he is.
Carl:          Where is he from?
Raymond:  Jacksonville.
Carl:          How does he know about this church?
Raymond:  He started this church.
Carl:          Oh, so he is like the boss of this church.
Raymond:  I guess you could say that.
Carl:          What happened to that other guy?
Raymond:  Who?
Carl:          The tall guy who used to preach here?
Raymond:  You mean Bro. Parker?  He went to start another church in Alabama.
Carl:  Oh, he left.
Raymond:  Yes.  He is starting another church just like this one.
Carl:  Are you gonna leave too?
Raymond:  No, I don't plan on it.

That just blessed my heart.  This little boy, by the way, started out as one of our "problem kids", but is becoming Raymond's little helper and every time the doors are open (and he is not grounded for fighting at school) he wants to be at church.

Raymond knows that there is a strong probability that the majority of our services will be attended by mostly children.  He is not disturbed by this.  He has asked our speakers not to be disturbed by this and not to hold back any punches.  These children are taking the messages they hear at church back to their homes.  We know this for a fact.  One parent told us that her daughter said that if she was going to have boyfriends and children then she needed to get married.  What a blessing!  If the parents won't come to church to hear the truth, then maybe God will use these children to take the truth to their parents.  They got an ear full last night and I am looking forward to the rest of the week!
Until next time,



Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentines Day!

For almost six years I have been married to Mr. Raymond Beckles and what a wonderful time we are having.  Someone has said that the honeymoon, "starstruck" time of your marriage lasts only about two years maximum.  I strongly disagree!  You can continue on your honeymoon for as long as you are willing to fight for it.  I can honestly say that when I married my "Mr. Right" I didn't know what I was getting myself into.  I can think of five people in my  family (including my grandmothers sisters and brothers) who actually took the time to get married.  Only three of those ten realationships remain today. One couple I have never met - my grandmothers brother and his wife.  Another of the three I have only met the husband - my great-uncle. The last of those three recently ceased because my uncle (my mothers 40 year old brother) died (heart attack); and I am happy to report they he was saved and that they were happily married. I wasn't raised around happily married couples.  After I was saved I was exposed to many homes and I payed close attention to the parents' relationships in those homes.  I learned a lot just by observing.  I thought our marriage would be easy to keep "heavenly" because I married the best man in the world and I am pretty easy going and I forgive and forget easily.{I didn't expect to have much to need to forgive and forget... after all, I married God's perfect choice for me...}  Boy, did I have a lot to learn.  Even "Mr. Perfect choice for Me" isn't perfect...and neither am I.  The purpose of this post is just to encourage you to fight for a heavenly marriage.  The Devil desires to "steal, kill and to destroy" (John 10:10)  The Destroyer and our enemy desires to destroy our homes.  One easy way to do that is to destroy the romance and love between a husband and wife - the foundation of our homes.  I have learned (most of this this year):

1.  Anytime you have a negative thought enter your mind about your beloved, realize who is the originator of it and replace it with positives.  My husband jokes now about how he used to call home before he came home just to make sure the Devil hadn't convinced me that he was the devil in disguise.  Sometimes I would get so upset about some little thing (he left his dirty socks on the floor again!, He forgot to .... blah blah blah...you get the idea) and it would snowball.  By the time he came home I would be so upset and would become cold and stiff.
2.  Tell him how great he is...and don't let him get out of it.  My husband doesn't always recieve compliments very well, so I have made it my goal to help him by giving him practice.
3.  Schedule "sugar" days.  Certain days of the week are mine and certain days of the week are his.   It is scheduled.  How un-romantic  you may say; but it works. This is very important!  You didn't go through your honeymoon a day without it, why stop now. His "sugar" is always...um..."sugar"; but sometimes mine is a back rub or a foot rub.  We leave one day a week open.
4.Make sure he knows he is in first place in your heart, not the children.  Not your parents.  When our children are infants I pay special attention to this.  I spend so much time performing their necessities (I also enjoy holding them, smelling them, and kissing them when they can't complain) that it is easy to leave him out.  (Our special "sugar" schedule helps with this point too!) One thing I have learned is to not let them interrupt him when he is talking to me.  No matter how important they think what they are saying is (unless there is a REAL emergency.

Four tips to keep you sweet for your honey!

Until next time,

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Our Special Guest

Introducing my little three year old niece Devorianna Mishanna Doncha Ceasar (my sister's name is Devoria).  We call her Anna for short.  We were in a conference in OKC and she spent the night with us, and she was such a joy that I asked my sister if I could take her for the next two weeks and bring her back home when we returned for another conference in the area.  She agreed; but with tears.  Understandably!  I let Aaliyah stay with her grandparents in California for two weeks last Christmas...and let me tell ya, that won't happen again (at least not any time soon). 
Honestly, I didn't know what to expect.  Her home is quite different from ours and I didn't know how she would adjust to lets say...having to go to church at least three times a week. (Sometimes we visit other churches in Ark. for fellowship which can come to as much as six times a week.)  No cable television, watching only a few DVD and VHS (she didn't know what a VHS tape was...gasp!) etc, etc.  You get the picture.  Also in our home everyone is expected to obey right away.    Let me tell you, she wasn't the one in trouble most of the time.  My little, sweet, precious Aaliyah got into most of the trouble.  I only had to get onto Anna once or twice the whole time she was here.  How my ornery sister ended up with such a sweet and precious child I will never know. 
Seriously,  I found myself convicted about how little I pray for this dear child.  She absolutely LOVED sitting at the table for all of her meals, taking a nap everyday, and having story/song/prayer time every night before bed.  By the time she left she was praying on her own for anything she ate ("Dear God, thank you for Jesus.  Amen") and singing "The B-I-B-L-E"  word perfect.  If you think of it please whisper a prayer for my little Annas.  She needs the Lord's protection and grace in her life. 
Recently I was able to get in touch with a brother in the Lord who started a church just like ours in the area where she lives.  I was so excited.   this was just one of the blessing we received after attending the conference in Oklahoma. I gave my family's address to this dear pastor and his wife and they will be trying to get them all in church.  My heart will be so blessed if she gets to ride the van to church with them.  I would be even more blessed if my whole family got into church and let the Lord do a might work in their lives.  They all have a tremendous respect for my husband and I; but have not jumped onto the Truth that we embrace.  Once again, Please pray with me about this matter.  Thank you!!!
After her last service with us at church (She just woke up.)

Allie and Anna read a book before naptime.

Her first full day with us we went to the Care home to read scripture. 
You can see on her face that he is unsure about this whole thing.

Anna and Allie sing a special "The B-I-B-L-E" after church.

Annas favorite Sunday dinner.

She is a chocolate fan!... A girl after my own heart.


Friday, February 3, 2012

Cousins




For the past two weeks I have been a little busy.  We decided to bring my niece back with us from OKC since we had to head back that way in a couple of weeks anyway.  We all had a blast!!!  I will post more about this fun time later.  Ta-ta for now.

Until next time,


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