"FASTER FASTER MISTER WOB"
Those are the words I heard from my itty bitty two year old as she rode in the big tube behind the Master Craft Ski boat of our dear friends! Hilarious that my little one loves high adventure and thrill seeking!
So, this past Sunday we had a great time and a much needed break from the monotony of life when our sweet friends invited us out for a day on the lake. The weather was perfect, hot and sunny as always in San Antonio. The lake was perfect, not too many boats to bother us and the fellowship was perfect, great friends and great conversation! Here are a few highlights from the day.
Cute girls taking in the sun
Meanwhile, the brothers take in the tube
Then we added the bigger boy and a cute almond eyed beauty! My girl is ready for high adventure!
The girls decide to take er' for a spin
Then Lori and I decide to show them all how it's done
No wonder that girl has a soar back .... check out that air!
And well .... Doug! HAHA
Monday, June 30, 2008
"FASTER FASTER MISTER WOB"
Posted by Cristie at 3:34 PM
Saturday, June 28, 2008
Far far away, in a place called Xuwen, China ....
There is a Comprehensive Institute that is home to many beautiful children! There was once a beautiful little baby girl who was brought here .... when her Mommy and Daddy were unable to keep her and left her to be found in a place they knew she would be safe. The baby girl was born on November 3, 2005 and weighed in at 6.38 pounds. We will never know the agony that her birth Mommy and Daddy went through when they had to make the decision to leave her, but we do know one thing ... the Lord knew from the day he began forming her in her birth Mommy's womb, that he had a plan for her ... and he knew us .... the family a half a world away that he had created her for and that was longing to bring her home!
They began the journey to their daughter on November 10, 2004,(one year prior to her birth) and was logged into the China Center of Adoption Affairs on June 23, 2005. A long 23 months later ... on June 26, 2006, they received their long awaited phone call telling them that they had a daughter! Words can never describe the emotion of their day!
The next day, the fed-ex stork delivered the package they had dreamt of for so long! He had no clue what treasure he held in his truck. The Daddy was there to capture the moment and wait anxiously until the Mommy arrived home!
And when that Mommy arrived at the door, the Daddy had perfectly and precisely placed it just in her sight ....
The Mommy could not hold back her tears ... she had been dreaming of this day since the Lord placed the seed in her heart in April of 2002, that she had a baby girl who would be born of her heart and not of her womb. FINALLY ... she would see the face she had had visions of only in her dreams.
Trembling in excitement and anticipation, the Mommy and Daddy could not believe that this moment had arrived. They looked at each other and took a deep breath and opened their package. Inside, they found four pictures of their beautiful daughter and the information of the baby girl they had been waiting to meet
Can you believe how beautiful she was? Neither could they! They gasped as they looked at her first picture (the one you see above). They then began to read all about her. Her name Xu Xiao Wen meant : Xu (dignified and gentle), Xiao (dawn or daybreak), she loves to listen to music, knows her name, likes to be held, can pronounce words like "Ba" and "Ma", will smile when someone calls her name. The paperwork goes on to tell them all about their beautiful daughter and the end it reads "All these make her look very lovely". Lovely she is, that Mommy and Daddy could not believe how much they already loved her!
That Mommy's journal writing from June 28, 2006
What more can I say than you have left us BREATHLESS! I can't stop looking at your pictures and dreaming of the day I kiss those precious heart shaped lips! You are so strikingly GORGEOUS! You should have seen your Daddy's face the first time he got a glimpse of you. Tears filled his eyes and all he could say was "WOW ... She's BEAUTIFUL". We caught the whole fed-ex delivery and the first time we saw you on video. I hope someday you will cherish those moments as much as we did. All we could do was laugh and cry in jubilation!
The day was not completely perfect, however, as your friend Libby's packet got lost by the Fed-ex and was never delivered to Mrs. Cindy and Mr. Billy. It was a torturous day and through many phone calls and tears we tried to stay positive. Because of critical ORIGINAL documents that must be signed under a timeline, if they didn't receive their package we would not travel together. Well, Maliah, this is not the end of the story! SO many people began to pray and petition the Lord on Libby's behalf and how gracious is his hand that delivered every prayer answered. The package arrived this morning! Shouts of joy have resounded in the tents of the righteous. We can now fully CELEBRATE! And isn't it amazing that you and Libby and Maura and Klaire are TOGETHER ... all in Xuwen Institute. Their Mommy's are the mommy's that I have traveled this journey with the closest and I don't think it's all a coincendence that the Lord brought these relationships together and delivered our babies from the very same place. It's a comfort to Mommy to know that right now, as I type, you are with those beautiful girls that you will forever have as friends! Like I have said, I am in awe at how the Lord doesn't leave one detail undone. His plan is AWESOME and he is so sovereign!
SO, I mailed our acceptance letters signed back today. Let me tell you, ladybug, the moment I saw your precious eyes staring at me through those pictues, I knew you were the baby girl I had been dreaming of for 19 long months. There was no hesitation and your Daddy agreed that you were PERFECT!
I cannot wait for the next few weeks to pass. It is torture to stare at those photos and not be able to hold you. We are all dreaming of you being home and playing with your big brother, Canyon and your big sister, Dakota. It is going to be truly the joy of my life to see you home and giggling with them. They love you so much already and Dakota, your sister, was telling me just today that she would help dress you everyday and change your diapers ... not the "poopy" ones she said but the wet ones. That's my big girl! Mommy's helper and your BIG SISTER.
I also wanted to tell you about our most loving and treasured friends! We were humbled and in awe that we had so many friends show up at Ming Court to celebrate you last night. Everyone came to rejoice and oooh and aaah over your pictures. Maliah, I know we are so luck to have you and baby girl, you are so lucky to have them. They cannot wait to welcome you home and into our "family"! Praise God for each and every friend who has prayed us through this journey and came to share in the moment of our celebration. It left me feeling very humbled. As your Daddy kept saying last night, "We are overwhelmed"!
Well, beautiful girl, I need to run. We have a lot to do to prepare to bring you HOME. Get ready, Mommy is coming SOON!
I love you
SO ... this week, was the 2cnd anniversary of the referral of that baby girl, We, her Mommy and Daddy, brother and sister cannot get over still that we were chosen to be her forever family! It is with pure joy that we celebrate each year the first time we saw her beautiful almond eyes and perfect heart shaped lips. We traveled to China in September of that same year and were united with beautiful Maliah on September 4 (labor day ... how fitting). You can read more if you'd like on our journey site for Maliah. Just click on the link to the side!
If you are one of my friends and readers waiting for this long awaited day. Know this, it is one you'll never forget! Just like the birth of your bio children, it is a day that is perfectly ordained by the Lord. The day you hold your child will be divine. Your day will come and when it does ... the long wait, the emotional roller coaster will slip away like a distant memory and you will be left with the joy only the Lord can bring when he delivers his splendor!
Posted by Cristie at 11:32 AM
Monday, June 23, 2008
HAPPY BIRTHDAY CANYON!
8 years ago, June 23, 2000, at 8:37 am, my life changed forever! The Lord blessed me beyond imagination when He gave me the gift of becoming a Mommy to the cutest, smartest, most talented little boy who already depicts integrity, dignity and greatness! From conception, Canyon was a true gift. Though Daddy and I hadn't intended on starting a family just yet, you will never know how elated we were when we found out that we would soon be a family of 3. Your Daddy's chest bowed with such pride the day you were born. I'll never forget him during the delivery looking down to see you crowning and with huge tears streaming down his face he said "Cristie, I can see him ... I can see our son!". He was hands on right away, changing the first poopie diapers, helping me figure out how to nurse you, cheering me on as I learned this new role of being a Mommy! I can remember one night sitting in the rocking chair nursing you and huge tears just rolling down my face. Daddy looked up at me and said "what's wrong"? I told him in that moment "I never knew I'd love someone so much". Because of you, Canyon ... your Daddy declared "he wanted a gaggle of these". Little did we know, your beautiful sister wouldn't be so easy and so content as you were. HAHA
Canyon enjoyed his 8th birthday with a group of 10 boys. They played Laser Tag at Laser Quest, ate pizza, cake and just had a good time being boys! And boy he is .... ALL BOY! Today Canyon is at Basketball camp. He will embark on this adventure every day this week for 4 hours a day. He is LOVING it! When I dropped him off today, he went in and started shooting hoops like a pro .. like he could take on the world. That's my Canyon. He's full of confidence (without being prideful), he is witty, very smart, has a huge heart, is an ambassador for Christ, and LOVES his Daddy like nothing else! He's a great role model and I was proudest this year when he won the award for Most Respectful at school and was nominated for the Tim Duncan character of the year award.
He's top notch! Happy Birthday my precious boy!
BEAUTIFUL CANYON! MOMMY'S PRIDE AND JOY!
HERE WE ARE WHEN DAKOTA WAS BORN
HERE HE IS AT 2! HE LOVED BOB THE BUILDER AND HERE HE IS BEING "MR FIX IT" WITH HIS GOGGLES
THIS IS NOW .... LOOK HOW HE'S GROWN!
THE FAM AT CANYON'S PARTY
THE BIRTHDAY BOY!
Posted by Cristie at 1:01 PM
Friday, June 20, 2008
Let me say thank you to some of you ladies who stood in the gap for me yesterday when I was feeling depleted. For a multitude of reasons, yesterday just felt like too much. The afternoon went much better than the morning - thanks to a few prayer warriors out there. The kids and I made a Chic-filet lunch visit where we ran into an old friend. That is always a little extra blessing from the Lord to see a smiling face. We also made a Lowe's run. That could have been more fun if it weren't for a very sleepy and sassy two year old (oh well!). I'm trying to find some paint colors for my entry way and living room. I think now, I've put 5 different samples of a tan/gold on my walls to no avail - too yellow, too dark, too light - you name it - not right!. You know when you have something ... a look ... in your head and can't get it right. UGH frustrating!
When we arrived home I told my two oldest to grab some books and a comfy place to sit so they could have some quiet reading time. I then put Maliah down for a nap and guess what ... jumped right in bed with her, snuggled and WENT TO SLEEP! AAAAH ... that daily bread the Lord knew I needed. I had a nice little cat nap with my little cutie who was SNORING and then snuck out of her room before she could awake. The house was quiet, Dakota had fallen asleep listening to "Black Beauty" on tape and Canyon ... well .... let's just say Canyon is pure sunshine so he joined me in on some laundry folding. Once Daddy arrived home we went to the pool, had some family fun, ate dinner and then put all the kiddos to bed. Today, I'm doing more of those "to do's" but it seems the house is more agreeable today and the tasks don't seem as daunting. I'm off in a minute to go workout. YES ... I always am refreshed after a good run!
SO .. .that being said, thank you girls for praying. Isn't it awesome to know that the Lord allows us to carry one another's burdens when the load feels so heavy!
On another note, Dakota's referral went over to the specialist and we got our appointment made. She will be seeing the Orthopedic Specialist on the morning of July 2. I'll keep you all up to date, however, your prayers for a clear prognosis and plan of action would be great!
We're off for some workout and swim time. Keeping my eyes UP! Keeping my eyes UP!
Posted by Cristie at 7:04 AM
Thursday, June 19, 2008
Well, I am not sure what to say other than I am EMPTY! I have nothing left to give ... anyone! DONE!
Each day I awake to 3 kids (usually who are awake by 6:45 or 7:00) and together we spend the day trying to find things that will give them some enjoyment and entertainment. My two year old is getting out of her bed throughout her naps where I simply return her to her bed with some tough love, 4, 5, 6 times an afternoon. Each night, she does the same. Last night, I laid her down at 7:45 after a long day of swimming, playing and fighting like cats and dogs with her siblings. At 9:45 she was still getting out of her bed and disobeying her Mommy. Each time, I'd return her with a spanking and a firm "do not get out of your bed .. you need to obey the first time". Within minutes, I'd see her peak around the corner or even better yet, jump up on the couch and sit next to me with a look on her face that says "I'm doing this to press your buttons". ARGH! My two older kids have been spending a better portion of the day bickering! ALL DAY ... Bickering! By the time Doug gets home I'm done, spent, empty from the many time outs, long talks and reprimanding. By that time, I have little patience and he looks at me when I snap like I'm some monster. I'm not ... a monster ... but I am EMPTY! I have nothing for him when he walks through those doors, and oh how I wish I did. Last night my Dakota had nightmares throughout the entire night. I was up at 11:30, 12:30, 2:00, 3:00 and 4:00. UGH ... no sleep, no sanity!
To add to all of that, many phone calls to argue with HOA issues, organize doctors appointments, insurance companies and their billings, putting together birthday parties, summer activities and THE gala that I have spoke of previously. You'd think too that I could be filled up at church. ???HMMM????! That is another whole story. Let's just say I'm no fab five and really don't care to be included in that or anything else that goes on there where that is a concern. In a church the size of most house churches ... things are just too small, the work load too big and well, honestly, I have thrown in the towel there too. Just done with all the games ... it is too EXHAUSTING!
SO .... I thought I'd vent. Today I feel spent. I feel empty with nothing to give anyone. Lord, if today you could just come and do this job for me because I need a break from this life ... this world ... these "to do's"! Oh, if only that could happen!
I am EMPTY!
Posted by Cristie at 8:22 AM
Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Crazy people & $500,000
I'm in awe. You crazy, generous people.
This just in. As of June 17th in just 27 days, you have given The Maria's Miracle Fund Shaohannah's Hope over $500,000. 500,012.40 as of 11:44am this morning. : )
On behalf of the Chapmans and Shaohannah's Hope, thank you so very much. What a beautiful tribute!
(Posted on Jim Houser's blog (manager to SCC and family!).
This amazes me! Truly, this beautiful child has inspired so many and her legacy will impact the face of orphans all over! May she be holding the hand of her savior and giggling with him as together they see his children living out James 1:27! Amazing!
Posted by Cristie at 10:47 AM
Well, last Thursday, we took our bouncing 6 year old Dakota to the doctor for her 6 year check up. She weighed in at a whopping 39.6 pounds and was 44 inches tall. That puts our girl in the 23% for height and 15% for weight. She is still apparently a petite princess, however, that is a huge gain since the days when she sat on the charts in the 5% for both. Go Dakota! Go God!
At the beginning of our appointment, the doc asked if I had any concerns. Just the one, the same from last year at this time ... she tiptoe walks. Last year, the doc spit words out like "behavioral habit vs. ever slight cerebral palsy" and "let's give it a year and see how she does with working with her". With that, I left a little disillusioned about what that may mean for our girl and solicited the help of my brother in law (specializing in prosthetics - artificial limbs), Aunt Karen (a PT) and their contact with a Orthotics guy who made Dakota some great shoe inserts to help her "heal strike". Daddy and I also went to work trying to incorporate the excercises that Aunt Karen gave us to help stretch her achilles and legs. I will say, we weren't as consistent as we probably should have been. It's tough sitting and stretching 5-6 times per day.
I may be regretting my commitment to those stretches now though. As the Doc cut me a glance as I brought up my concern again this year she said "let's take a look". This year she used words like "beyond normal", "specialists", "referrals" and "surgeries". Seems so silly for some ... it's just feet and after all, things could be VERY worse. I have a beautiful, bouncing blonde who walks on her tip toes. No big deal really. And your right, it isn't that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things. As I read other blogs of families who have lost their children, are dealing with major life or death illnesses and more ... it is really no big deal! We can handle this and things could be worse!
But yesterday, as I called one of the "orthopedic specialists" it just seemed so real for her. As the gal on the other end of the phone said things like "make sure the pediatrician sends over her referral so the SPECIALIST will see her" and "as we begin to assess what course of action she will need" etc. Dakota's pediatrician mentioned having to cut her achilles and that sometimes their is such a tightening that it is out of her control to be flat footed. She CAN do it though ... be flat footed. It just is more comfortable I suppose for her to be up on the tips of her toes. Doug's sister mentioned changing the habits by using braces on her legs etc. What does that look like for a first grader? How will that effect her and her self esteem? What will other kids say to her? Really, in the grand scheme of things, it shouldn't matter. However, the reality is, in my flesh, it is concerning to me because I know that girls in particular are mean and thrive on making others feel worse about themselves so they feel better (see my post on throwing in the towel ... it still happens at 34). We will do whatever it takes, and spend whatever it takes (apparently the title "specialist" comes with a very steep price tag) to help Dakota learn to walk on the heels of her feet. We will do whatever it takes to keep her from destroying her toes, her back and all those parts of her body that are effected by the way she is walking. We will do it! I'm just concerned in my flesh on exactly WHAT we will have to do. It is still undetermined until we go see that "specialist".
So, pray for Dakota as we await the referral paperwork and our appointment to be set up. Uncle John is also going to contact a pediatric Orthopedic Doc he knows. He says he's highly regarded and lives here in San Antonio. I'd love his opinion too so pray that that is followed up with! I think highly of Uncle John. He founded the prosthetics unit at BAMC and is THE man who opened the doors to the Intrepid Clinic you probably have heard of since Bush himself has toured it along with many other big politicians. He's the man who fits the prosthesis for our soldiers who return home from war with missing limbs. For them, he plays God in a sense by re-creating a working limb. He is in every sense of the word the Lord's tool to make those men as whole again as possible. SO we trust that Uncle John knows the right people and he knows a little bit about feet and Orthodics or at least those who do!
On to the next parenting journey. Their is never a dull moment is there when it comes to having children!
Posted by Cristie at 6:37 AM
Sunday, June 15, 2008
AREN'T I BEAUTIFUL AND SO GROWN UP!
Whew! I'm exhausted and my week is about to begin again! Last week was full of fun. The oldest of my two embarked on VBS at a local church. Can I just say ... this just did an awesome job and my kiddos had SOO much fun! Maliah and I stuck around each morning for the praise and worship and came back early each day to see them rock the house again. Maliah and her two little buddies Clara and Emma would just jump and dance their hearts away in the back of the sanctuary. LOVE IT! The afternoons were full of swimming, play dates with a few friends and a few necessary appointments. All in all ... I am not sure we saw much of the house last week.
We also had activities every night but one and Friday Granny took Canyon and Dakota (and Mommy too) to see Kung Foo Panda and to dinner (the whole fam) for Canyon's pre-birthday party. Canyon will be eight this next week but Granny and PiPa will be busy taking in Alaska so we did a little pre celebrating ... Canyon's birthday though I believe they were actually celebrating that they were heading off for a trip of a lifetime to see the great and vast beauty of Alaska!
This week was another fun adventure ... Maliah's first haircut. It took Granny, Canyon, Dakota and myself to juggle keeping her occupied and still and taking the pictures. Mrs. Cindy who cuts my hair was ready for our girl and boy did she get a doozie. While Maliah didn't fuss or scream like one little boy I know (hmm hmmm Canyon), she was busy as she always is so a straight line on that hair looked to be an impossible task. She counted rollers while she put them on and off Granny's fingers, discovered the squirt bottle and drenched herself and all of us in a near proximity and kept us all giggling at all her silly antics. Another first down in Maliah's book! She looks so grown up now in her big girl hair!
"Ciny, You need dis?"
How much to cut is always the question?
"I help too"
Dakota had a big week too! My silly girl has had some really wiggly teeth for some time. Last week we finally lost our first tooth when the basketball bumped her mouth. Boink ... right into her hand went the tooth. To her giggly surprise she had officially lost her first tooth. Yesterday, she had the second of those two teeth literally dangling by a thread. I kept calling her Nanny McPhee as she continued to play with it and make all sorts of faces while she moved it around in their. In the afternoon we were sitting on the floor just hanging out when all of a sudden I saw her make a little gagging response and then boom ... out came the tooth into her hand. GRIN ... finally ... no more tongue olympics with the dangling teeth (at least for the next few weeks, until the next loose tooth appears).
All in all, a great week!
Oh, did I mention we got pictures from our Xuwen sister, Klaire? Mommy Julie blessed us with current pictures of Cassidy, Carly and Miss Klaire. Klaire and Maliah were at Xuwen Comprehensive Institute at the same time. They are only days apart in age and were together on their Gotcha Days! The Wilson family were some of our travel mates and we spent MANY hours together watching our new blessings, laughing, eating Danny's Bagels in the Wilson room and taking in many bartering in Shaiman Island. Klaire's Mom, Julie can do some serious shopping and I am sure Klaire has enough squeeky shoes to last until she's 16! Anyways, I thought I'd share. Isn't she a doll!
Below is a picture of Ashley Dawn. She is also from Xuwen and came home when Maliah did. She lives on a Chicken Farm. Isn't that a hoot! Her Mommy is Terry and her Dad, Berry West. In China Berry didn't go anywhere without his boots and cowboy hat. A true site to see in the middle of China. Anyways, isn't Ashley a beauty! I'm telling you, Xuwen babies are so beautiful!
Below is pictures of Maura. There is also a picture of Maura and her big sister, Keara. You can read Keara's blog as she is on my links. Maura was also a travel mate of Maliah's. As we draw near our anniversary of our referral, I thought it would be appropriate to show some of our girls! Isn't she a doll! They are currently living in Japan. You can pray for their Daddy, Steve. He serves our country well in the military!
Lastly, you all know Miss Libby Foote. I couldn't do a post on Xuwen Sisters without having pictures of our precious and true sister Libby. Living 5 minutes apart from one another could not be explained by human terms other than knowing that the Lord divinely planned our girls lives to be together. It doesn't hurt either that Billy and Cindy are as special to Doug and I as anyone could ever be. I daily praise the Lord for them ... their entire family and Libby, whom we adore. You can also follow the Foote's on their next journey to bring home Libby's sister, Aria Hope. They sent their paperwork to Ethiopia last Friday and we are counting the days and months to see who the Lord has planned for their family. And on a selfish and excited note ... I will have the pure honor of being Cindy's travel mate to ET! I get to be there to see Aria become a Foote and to see the look on both of their faces when they look into each others eyes for the first time. I also get to be the honored one to be the little mouse and help Cindy with whatever I can so that she can concentrate on loving on and bonding with her new daughter. Can it get any better than that? Well ... maybe ... but I don't think our sanity can take another Martine member. Who knows!
Here's Klaire, Libby and Maliah then. That was 21 months ago ... can you believe how much they've changed!
Here's all five of the girls! Mrs. Julie bought all the girls matching outfits before we left and sent them to us. Are they not cute! Funnier is that we wore that outfit last summer (an entire year later). As you can see ... Maliah was a peanut even then!
AND FOLKS THOSE ARE THE FIVE XUWEN SISTERS! THEY BEGAN THEIR LIVES TOGETHER IN A LITTLE TOWN IN XUWEN AND TODAY, THEY ARE SPREAD OUT OVER THE U.S. and BEYOND! WE ARE THANKFUL FOR EACH OF THEM!
Posted by Cristie at 7:33 PM
Saturday, June 7, 2008
O.K. so I have been wanting a new camera ... one that will zoom 18X and one that will take the shutter pictures - 18 per second. I was telling my Mom about what I was looking for and she said "ooh, that's something your Dad and I need as we're going to Alaska in a few weeks". By that afternoon, my Dad had done all his research and they had bough themselves a new Nikon camera. We have had all sorts of fun playing with the camera and seeing what it can do. It takes some gorgeous photos! I will post a few here for you to see. The subjects are quite nice too!
Click on each photo to blow it up on your screen. Especially the action ones ... they just pop!
Peek a BOO!
Do you like our "boggles"?
Check out that action shot! LOVE IT
My flying squirrel!
That's what I call some air!
Love that waterfall moment!
Rub a dub dub, Maliah loves to lay in the tub
My bubbly girl!
Posted by Cristie at 6:58 AM
Thursday, June 5, 2008
Have you ever watched a hunter? They hide from their prey, not showing themselves obviously. They disguise themselves with camouflage and lay low in the fields or high in a blind as to not draw attention to themselves. But they are there, waiting for the perfect moment! A lion is much the same way, it takes note of it's prey and prowls and paces quietly as it awaits it's final pounce. It's cunning, orchestrated and timed.
The enemy works in the same way 1 Peter 5:8 "Be self-controlled and alert, Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.".
Prowling ... looking for someone to devour. Lately, I have felt the dark angels presence on every corner. I have recently put my guard up as I realize that he is prowling and looking for a place to sink in his teeth ... devour me.
Recently, Doug and I started on an awesome adventure from the Lord. Literally ... of the Lord. Called to orchestrate a night that would draw attention to the the thing the Lord holds most dear in his heart ... his orphans. The enemy detests that thought. He hates anything the Lord gives so much thought to and loves with all of him.
As associates for our adoption agency out of Virgina, we took on the task of putting together a night that would help fundraise and bring awareness to 4 major initiatives that would change the lives of over 5,000 children, 5,000 orphans! As we have begun to pray over this night, put together details of this night and work to make this night a reality, I have become ever increasingly aware of the enemy and his tactics and it has become quite clear that their is a huge threat to the Kingdom of Darkness where this event is concerned!
You know, sadly, many people profess themselves as Christians. They believe that their is a loving God and they even profess that Jesus is the final atonement, however, I am not quite sure that if they believe in the power of our Lord that they don't take more seriously the power of the enemy ... the antithesis of Christ himself. When you begin to bring up spiritual warfare in the presence of some their is often one of two reactions ... they become increasingly uncomfortable as it is out of their comfort zone or they seem oblivious of that spiritual realm and your words seem to fly over their head without a second thought. I even see it in the church, in the messages of the church and sadly even in the leaders. At mention of the devils schemes they seem to work to put a muzzle on your mouth and quickly divert the attention to another matter. What a lion that devil is ... he is so cunning, so full of schemes and lies that he has even blinded the eyes of our very own believers to his games.
On Tuesday night, Doug and I had a pretty intense conversation about what the enemy seemed to be doing in our lives. We clearly made recognition of his attempts to drive a wedge in our marriage, distract our focuses, use our friends as tools of disappointment and deception and work to take our eyes off of our focus. As we began to talk, Dakota who was upstairs fast asleep began screaming ... loudly. I ran upstairs to find her sitting up in bed and crying, having horrible nightmares. Not thinking, not recognizing the source, I comforted her and put her back to sleep. That night before bed, Doug and I prayed over the very things that we had discussed. The next 7 hours was spent comforting a screaming and crying Dakota. Now, I am not exaggerating here when I say that she cried a majority of the night. I have never been a Mom to go and get in bed with my kids and at one point, I grabbed my pillow, pushed her to the side and got in bed with her after she said "Mommy, don't leave me here alone". Something in my spirit stirred me and said "you cannot leave her". I prayed over her in those moments and she hugged me, said I love you and went to sleep. It wasn't long, however, until the night mares started all over again. Needless to say, it was a long night.
So last night, one of my dearest friends and a true warrior came over to visit. Doug had gone to her house to visit her husband and so we sort of switches friends for the night. As we sat and visited, I shared with her what had been going on lately, She began to once again tell me how the enemy will use schemes and to confirm how he works. As she began to point out her thoughts on the Orphans Gala event and some other activities that we are involved in that is a threat to the Kingdom of Darkness, Dakota began to scream out. Looking at my precious friend, she quickly came to action and said "let's go pray over her right now". So upstairs we went, together, in agreement that the enemy and his ploys and games were not welcomed here. My warrior friend prayed that Dakota would have the sleep of a righteous man and began to speak the name of Jesus over her with authority. We demanded that the enemy not be welcomed in this room.. to flee from our presence as Jesus was and is always victorious. Within those moments, Dakota fell right to sleep and I am not stretching any truth when I say, I never heard a peep from her again the rest of the night .... the sleep of a righteous man! My friends, when two are gathered in agreement the Lord is there. Where the name of Jesus is spoken and his authority is, the enemy cannot be .. he detests that mention and will flee at the sound of his name!
SO ... in light of all of this, I ask you brothers and sisters ... please pray for us as we embark on this calling of orchestrating a night for the awareness of our Lord's most beloved orphans and in the calling of helping serve the Somalian Bantu people. The enemy himself must be trembling at the thought that one of the lost people groups that we have no access to are right here in San Antonio (by the Lord's divine orchestration).. .being loved on, taught, and counseled by the believing world through XTI (xtremeteamsinternational) and it's volunteers.
The Lord tells us over and over to look after the orphans, the widows and the foreigners (aliens) among you. Doug and I are working to do that very thing and because of that ... he is crouching like a lion, waiting and watching for the perfect time to pounce. If you will pray with me, in agreement over these things ... he will flee ... his season will be shortened and you will have helped a sister and brother in Christ win one battle. We already knows who wins the war ... AMEN!
Posted by Cristie at 10:40 AM