Monday, December 31, 2007

Thank you..Movie review..Guitar Hero...

Thank you to everyone who wished Heredes and I a happy anniversary. It means a lot and we love each one of you.
Heredes and I have had a nice mini vacation of doing nothing and spending time together. I started work today and he is still on vacation, which I am happy about. I'm not going to lie, it was hard to wake up today and I have been eating really bad and not exercising. I know getting back to eating right and exercising will be difficult, but we have too get to it.

During vacation, we were able to watch two movies: Enchanted and I am Legend. So, it's time for a movie review.
If you haven't seen Enchanted, go watch it. It is corny and hilarious at the same time. I loved it. In a nutshell, it's Disney animation coming to life- real life. The actress who played Giselle was great. Now I know what a real princess would be like if she was real. It was a cute little love story- finding your prince or princess and living Happily Ever After. I give it 4 1/2 stars out of 5.

If you haven't seen I am Legend, ha, go watch it as well. It wasn't amazing or terrible- it was good. I'm not going to lie, I almost had a couple of pant accidents because of the uncertainty of scenes. Will Smith is a great actor, but I have to say Sam the dog was my favorite. Oh, poor Sam. I give this one a 4 stars out of 5.

On Friday, we went over Connie and Mike's house- if you follow Heredes' blog, you read about it. We passed Guitar Hero II on medium. It was incredible. On Sunday, Mike, Connie, Cassie and Carlos came over to play Guitar Hero III. We got 22 songs or so out of 44- that means we have to jump up to hard to be able to get the rest of the songs. I just have to give a shout out to my partner Connie because we rocked it on those songs. And of course, Mike made much improvement and my Husband- He's just the bomb. I loved playing that song with you. We did great! And Cassie and Carlos did a great job as well- being it was their first time. Thanks again Mike and Connie for bringing it over.

Tonight we are spending New Year's with my parents. I'm happy about that. Though I really don't like New Year's, I am excited to see how 2008 will turn out. I just pray for continual faithfulness to Christ, a strong marriage, and spend lots of time with family and be able to travel soon to visit our family in Peru, Venezuela and Brazil. Hope everyone's New Year's is a good one.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Part 2 of 2

What can I say, but that I love the man you see in the Comic Life stripe. We have entered our 3rd year in marriage and I am so thankful. It has been an exciting ride and I can't wait for the fifth year, the tenth year, and the sixtieth year. WooHoo!!! We had a nice anniversary. Had a picnic at a park by coconut grove, watched Enchanted, and then ate at Chef Adrianne's...Delicious...Thank you baby for putting up with me and for the beautiful 3rd year dvd. I love those.. Keep them coming. I had a wonderful year and a beautiful day. Can't wait for what's ahead of us. Muah!!!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Part 1 of 2

I am following after my friend's, Vicky, footsteps in adding many posts in one day.  This post is a recap of our Christmas services- especially the kids at Doral.  We had 35 awesome services in total, 11 at Cooper City and 3 at Doral.  Over 1300 decisions for Christ, of which 16 were kid decisions at Doral.  The service ranged from great praise and worship, with hip hop dancers, touching videos, and a simple, to the point salvation message by Pastor Troy.  The kids ministry had a fantastic Winter Wonderland and Christmas service. Cooper City's courtyard lit up with lights, giant inflatable's, karaoke, and more.  It was fun.  The best thing of all is the fact that FRC is one church where you are- so, a Winter Wonderland where you are.  Doral, Sawgrass, and Hallandale all created their Winter Wonderland at a High School, Movie Theatre, and a renovating church building.  Yes, it was hard work, but I heard fantastic stuff about each campus.  I have placed some pics of what ours looked like, though it looked way nicer in person.  There was cookie decorating, a snow machine, a bounce house, a chocolate fountain, arts and crafts, a family photo station, and face painting. (Doral)  The team of volunteers were just amazing. Thank you everyone for stepping up and making that Sunday a possibility and allowing God to use you through the giving of your time not for me or anybody else but for Christ and those who need Him.  My kids team also did a terrific job during the kid's service, making sure the gospel was preached and allowing the Spirit to move in the hearts of our kids.  It was a long Christmas at FRC, my body felt it afterwards but it was SOOOO totally worth every second of it.  Praise God because He is so good and so real and I am so unworthy, but thank you for calling me Yours.
As an end to this post, just wanted to say how nice it was to end monday night with my family eating and opening gifts and just being together.  I love you mom, dad, chants, gabo, and xena.  And of course my husband and all my family in Peru, Venezuela and Brazil.  

Friday, December 21, 2007

I had too...

I always stop by Dave Wakerly's blog, Hillsong kids, to check out what new kids stuff he's posted. (or plain funny stuff) If you go to you can see what your Whoville name would be if you lived there. (Just drag the compass to your left hand side, and you will see it) So, I had to do it and this is what came out:

Magnificant Marcella Razzle-foo-Who

Cute. Well, don't forget about our services. :)

Spread the Love Sign...

Cooper City
Dec. 20 - Thursday at 7:00 PM
Dec. 22 - Saturday at 5:00 PM and 6:30 PM
Dec. 23 - Sunday at 9:30 AM, 11:00 AM, 12:30 PM and 5:00 PM
Spanish service at 2:15 PM
Portuguese service at 7:00 PM
Hungarian service at 7:00 PM
Dec. 24 - Monday at 3:30 PM, 5:00 PM and 6:30 PM

Dec. 23 – Sunday at 9:30 AM, 11:00 AM and 5:00 PM

Hallandale Beach
Dec. 23 – Sunday at 9:30 AM and 11:00 AM
Spanish service at 12:30 PM
Dec. 24 – Monday at 5:00 PM

Dec. 23 – Sunday at 9:00 AM and 10:15 AM

Lima, Peru
Dec. 23 – Sunday at 10:30 AM
Spanish service at 9:00 AM

Internet Campus
Dec. 20 - Thursday at 7:00 PM
Dec. 22 - Saturday at 5:00 PM and 6:30 PM
Dec. 23 - Sunday at 9:30 AM, 11:00 AM, 12:30 PM and 5:00 PM
Spanish service at 2:15 PM
Dec. 24 - Monday at 3:30 PM, 5:00 PM and 6:30 PM

If your looking for a service to check out, I invite you to any of our campuses at Flamingo Road Church. Mi familia en Peru (y en Venezuela), si estan leyendo, lo pueden ver en el Internet o visiten ayi en el cine al que mi mami fue cuando estaba con ustedes. Where ever you guys are attending, may your hearts be filled with the glorious gift we were given that sweet morning 2,000 years ago. Let us come and adore Christ the King! And invite someone to join you.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

1 Corinthians 13: Christmas- Style

©By Sharon Jaynes

If I decorate my house perfectly with lovely plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights, and shiny glass balls, but do not show love to my family - I'm just another decorator.
If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals, and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime, but do not show love to my family - I'm just another cook.
If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home, and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love to my family - It profits me nothing.
If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties, and sing in the choir's cantata but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point.

Love stops the cooking to hug the child.

Love sets aside the decorating to kiss the husband.

Love is kind, though harried and tired.

Love doesn't envy another home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.

Love doesn't yell at the kids to get out of your way.

Love doesn't give only to those who are able to give in return, but rejoices in giving to those who can't.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things.

Love never fails. Video games will break; pearl necklaces will be lost; golf clubs will rust. But giving the gift of love will endure.

I get these Girlfriends in God devotionals through email and this poem was part of today's devotional. I read through it and I just thought it was so great! Not only is 1 corinthians 13 the Love chapter, but what a great way to combine it through poetry and remind me and us that no matter how many pretty little things we make or cook for the holidays, if I forget to love my family, my husband, and forget that I am celebrating Jesus' birth and resurrection than, yup, I've missed it and I don't want to miss Jesus and His message or my family. Hope you all have a great Christmas and be encouraged today to love.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Wow..It's about time...

Life has been moving pretty quickly in the Ribeiro residence. I've been wanting to blog and catch everyone up on what's been going on with life, but everyday it just seems harder and harder. Today though, is the day that I WILL BLOG!!! I made my first comic life with pictures of events that have happened within the past three weeks.

First, our church just finished up The Domino Effect series. I had the privilege of making a prop for Pastor Troy's message- clay dominoes. The final pieces are not shown, but they came out very nice. (Sharon did a great job finishing up the paint job) Pastor Troy clamped them and then with a hammer would smash them; illustrating those things in our lives that need to be broken so we can move on and be healed and transfer that over to our future generations.

Second, we are now in our Love Sign- A Retro Christmas- series which kicked off this past weekend. The message was "Being a Love Sign to the Persecuted". Heredes, video team, & Pr. Troy flew to NY for a video shoot that was used as part of the teaching moment during the service. The message not only hit persecution as we would usually think of, the government overpowering the people, etc., but also in our daily lives. We are persecuted financially, spiritually, physically and in those moments of our persecution God's word says that our God is a Refuge. So, when you feel persecuted or overwhelmed, call out to God your/our/my Refuge. He is always a present help in trouble. Amen?!
The offices had a Christmas decorating contest last Monday. We were each to decorate our office with a Retro feel and include our ministry. Since I am the receptionist, my tree is a supply room Christmas tree- with pens, mini tape dispensers, etc. We had a 4 way tie- and I was one of the winners. I was very excited. The pictures of Heredes and I was a project I did with some of the staff people in the office. I took their pics and then added them as part of my room.

Third, there were weddings in the month of November. We had four in total, of which we could only make three. Our friends Kenny & Amy got married about three weeks ago. They had a lovely beach wedding and a wonderful, gorgeous, umm, delicious reception. :) Then my cousin got married two weeks ago and that was another beautiful wedding. It was some busy weekends getting ready and dressing up. My sister was my date for most of time, which I never complain. Our friend Tammy got to join us as well, and Tammy thank you soooo much for my makeup and hair and for making me laugh soooo much.

Lastly, I never got to post about Thanksgiving. Last year I baked an apple pie, pumpkin tart, and mashed potato all from scratch. This year I told myself I would keep it simple. I baked the same pumpkin tart and this time it was much easier. Then, I decided to make Sweet Potato Gnocchi with a maple and sage sauce. OMG, I was tired. Dough is never easy, but it is my goal to perfect it- one day. At the end of the day, I felt really frustrated that they looked funky and that they wouldn't taste good, but thank the Lord they were a hit. Usually for thanksgiving, we have friends and family come over, we pray, share, and sing. This year we prayed and then ate. I know it may be horrible, but I had fun meeting some new people and seeing people just talking and getting to know each other a bit more. I was just really thankful for my husband, family, our new church, and those close special friends. Above all, I am just so thankful that I have a God that is real and really loves me. Jesus thank you.

Once again, this has become a long post and I will try to post more often so they are shorter. I am excited for the month of December. God has a lot in store of all of us and I can't wait to see the beautiful things that are going to happen.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Ahh, what to blog about...

Lately, it has become difficult for me to update and keep track with my blog. I find myself writing nothing for a week and then come back and write like a book! The weekend has been incredible. Heredes, my sis, and I went to our friends Kenny and Amy's wedding. It was beautiful. The food was AMAZING! And if you know me, I love, love food. I wanted to put pictures, but I think I will add them to Picasa.

Today, OMG, Doral had to have hit it's highest attendance mark. We had two great services. Pastor Troy is such a great teacher. We had 26 kids in the 11 am service alone. That is ALOT! I have some pics of our beautiful, umbrella room. After the services, we had our Thanksgiving Lunch. There was so much food. Grecy and her team are so good at organizing. Great job everyone! There was a bounce house and a cotton candy machine. Good request Pastor Igor. I have some pics of that too. I think I made more parents laugh at me then have them enjoy the cotton candy. It was all over me. We had three of our friends join us today for church. Our friend David who has been coming consistently and our friends Veronica and Fernando, which was really nice to hang out with them and see how they were doing. I think Doral hit like 380. I don't know, I have to ask Heredes for the accurate count.

Now, I really have been wanting to POST about this very special person in my life- my DAD. This past week Heredes and I finally had the chance to go visit him at his new store. His moped/scooters, etc. store moved into a new location. Though it was a rough start, God is sooo in control and I am not doubting that. My father is such an amazing I write this I am about to sob. You guys don't understand how precious my family is to me and it sucks that many times I can't see them because of this thing we call life. I can't even imagine how my husband feels with his family being in Brazil or my parents and their family in Venezuela and Peru. But I just wanted to recognize my dad in this post because I am SO STINKIN' PROUD OF HIM. He has always been there for my sport games, piano recitals, and I will always remember when he would take my sis and I to the park or the pool. Life isn't easy and I know my parents, my family, can attest to that, but what I have been seeing over the years is how God is really teaching us and my parents that at the end of the day God is ALL we need and He will always provide. That is a promise- He will never leave us nor forsake us. Aren't we more precious than the sparrows? OH God how grateful I am to you for the family I have and all the blessings I have. I love my DAD, my MOM, my SISTER, my BROTHER, my HUSBAND, my XENA. Daddy and my family I am praying for overflow of blessing for you guys. Daddy, thank you for your hard work and integrity and faithfulness to God and your family. Good things are coming your way, I believe that for my family here and in Brazil. Phew, I just had to express those words on this blog of mine. If those who read this and know my family, just keep them in your prayers and for Ciao Motos to flourish :)
Today or tomorrow, take the time to call your parents or loved ones and tell them how much you love them!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Alot of Catching Up...

Last week, daylight savings began. Even though it doesn't feel like we have gained an hour, last sunday was one of those beautiful mornings you just had to take a picture of. So, I did. I love the view Heredes and I have from our balcony. There is a tree, which I think is dead because nothing grows from it, that I love to just look at. Sometimes, birds just sit around the branches and other days you have a view like the one in the picture.

Since there is a bit to catch up on, I will begin with Trunk or Treat. I know, so like 2 weeks ago but I have to share. It rained like crazy on Halloween, but the rain could not stop what God wanted to accomplish that night. There were some thousand families come by, rain and all. Though there was alot of preparation, from games to food to music, that seemed to have been a waste, it wasn't. The band still managed to play live music, there was candy every where, I had a Winnie the Pooh and an Alligator walking around (Thank you Amy, Chief, & Josue), and we played some games with the kids that were there. I want to say thank you to our friend Alex Comesanas for his game ideas. (I will have pictures of the boots and hats I made)

I have to share the prayer that has been answered for Heredes and I. I now work at FRC as the- Yup you guessed it- Receptionist. Wow, the job just follows me around :), lol! It has been a great 2 weeks. Everyone in the office has been very helpful in answering my Many questions. Sometimes I feel so bad, but it's better to ask than mess up really bad. I've already had some pretty interesting phone calls, from mean ones to ones where I have been able to pray for people and listen to them speak. It truly is an HONOR to be working there.

This past week was pretty hectic. Heredes and I would leave the house at 6 am and get home around 11:30 pm almost every night. We had Tuesday staff meeting, which all I can say is Wow. Pastor Troy you rock! There was 1st Wednesday, which once again WOW. Then Thursday, Heredes had a dress rehearsal for our friends Brian & Jackie's wedding, and then Friday was their wedding. Can I tell you that it had to be one of the most beautiful weddings. Brian & Jackie Fuller CONGRATULATIONS! And guys, know how much we love you because right now I am watching the Hillsong United Conference that Heredes and I missed. : P We love you guys and can't wait to talk about the "kits"!!!

Not only did we celebrate our friend's wedding, our friends Ashley and Darwin had their beautiful baby boy: Darwin Alberto Ortiz. Congratulations guys!!! We are going to try to visit tomorrow.

We had another wonderful Sunday at FRC Doral. I've got some great volunteers. Thank you all for jumping in and subbing, being there on time, and just making it wonderful for the kids. Thank you , thank you!! Our virtue for the month is RESPECT. As I was reading the lesson yesterday morning, I was just realizing how much that lesson or that virtue is for me. How important it is to "Give to Ceasar what is Ceasar's, and God's what is God's". God wants our obediance and love, and in the midst of those times where we have authority that we don't agree with, God wants us to still show respect because we will never know how that alone can make a difference in someone's life. So, to those who have been in authority over me at one point who I have lost some respect for and have allowed my flesh to kick in, I ask for your forgiveness.

Pastor Troy also started the new series: The Domino Effect. This weekend he taught about making the right choice; making good decisions. And he shared the verse where I believe Christianity is pretty summed up in: Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength. And though at the moment I misplaced my notes, I know that He hit some pretty hard stuff, that is so needed- for all of us, trust me.

Well, as I wrap up one last exciting note: THE AMAZING RACE STARTED LAST SUNDAY AND I AM ABOUT TO WATCH IT RIGHT NOW WITH MY HUSBAND. Mark my words, it is our goal to be on that show someday. IT IS THE BEST SHOW EVER. Well, so is Heroes. :) And another goal is going to Australia to sight see and attend Hillsong Church- which Hillsong Kids came out with their new album- CAN'T WAIT TO BUY IT AND OWN IT. "Pastor Troy, please don't take Heredes to Australia without me." Hope this makes up for my poor neglected blog. Eveyone, have a great night.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Cafe Bustelo Sleepless Night...

Guys, if you aren't doing anything tomorrow night...go join the Cafe Bustelo team as they launch their new Bustelo Cool...Art, music, cirque du soleil like acts, and more....

Friday, October 26, 2007

Week Update...

Though this week was non-stop, it was a great one! I got to start a little on the new job, work on kid's stuff, organize a bit, and meet alot of wonderful people. The people in the office at FRC are so wonderful. Espy, Pastor Troy's assistant, is super cool. She took me to Starbuck's for a little meeting and then we had a small group time and that is where I met some wonderful women: Diana, Deb, Janette, & Tami. Thanks ladies! The conversations and questions were great! I also got the opportunity to be part of this weekend's giving video. Yay! I was nervous, but the team did an incredible job putting everyone in sync and well, it is just great! Invite a friend for the last MyNakedPastor teaching.

Now, let's talk about the weekene. Heredes and I have it off!!!! Yayayayay!!! I still have tons of stuff to do. The team is set for Sunday, though, and I know it is going to go great. Thank you everyone: Mayla, Sara, Alberto, Sharisse, Gary, Natalie, Caleb, Chanti, Nicole, Mayla's sister, and Pr. Brigham.

What I am finalizing is Trunk or Treat. We have a 30-40 minute program for kids with music and games. Today, Heredes and I went shopping for all of that. The only thing I am missing now is my costume :( I am still looking for volunteers who want to help with games or music or even face painting..So, if you go to Doral and read this blog and you want to help somewhere, the children's area would be the place for you....

I will be posting the game ideas- who I give full credit to our friend Alex Comesanas from Coral Park Church. And hopefully pics and video of the event..

Praying and hoping your weekend goes well. Enjoy the rainy weather.

Monday, October 22, 2007

FRC Kid Volunteers & World....

Hey guys..I just uploaded my very first video..Filmed and edited by me...Whoo Hoo! This video is mainly for my volunteers who will be running the whole program on their own this weekend. My husband and I are going to be out for the weekend, so my volunteers are taking over and it's so exciting.
The video shows how we setup the room at Ronald Reagan High School and transform it into our kids church. Unfortunately, my camera was full and I didn't get to tape to much footage of the end result. But team hope it helps, and for everyone else out there who is doing church & kid's ministry in multi sites, I hope you enjoy it, get ideas, and if you have any IDEAS leave me a comment. I'd love to read them. There is still much to do in the world of kid's ministry at FRC, especially at Doral, but we have a great team who is always there reaching out to our kids. THANKYOU!!! So enjoy and have fun!!!

(The video is on the right hand side..just in case you missed it :) )

Sunday, October 21, 2007

What a Day....

Yesterday and today was like "one of those days". One of those days where your thoughts want to eat you and say, "yes, victory!" But God always has a way to remind me to look back to Him. I think it's the Holy Spirit...:) Pr. Ray Sanchez taught yesterday at church, and it was really good. He spoke about temptation...EEK!! Temptations can so easily entrap us- trust me I know. Little sins or big sins, they all lead to death- separation. But praise be to God who forgives because of what Christ Jesus did on the cross for me and the world. "God doesn't love me because of who I am or what I've done, but because of WHO HE IS!"- Sanchez. That was so refreshing to hear and sometimes it is so hard to even believe. But God wants me to trust and believe that and believe who I am in Him and who He believes I am in Him.
Today at Doral I thought I was going to have a melt down. I rushed through set up, tried to video tape something while setting up, felt so disorganized, some of my volunteers were late, etc. But in all that "emotion commotion" like my friend HP would say, God did something so OUT OF THIS WORLD. Our 9:30 am service had 5 children, which is great. And our 11:00 am service- are you ready for this- had 26 kids in total. TWENTY-SIX!!! We were all blown away, excited, and thankful.
After tear down, I had a short meeting with my volunteers and had lunch at Macaroni Grill with Heredes of course, and our friends Ivan, Lizbet, Mike, & Connie. I had the best Eggplant Parmesean. Later, we went to Dolphin Mall and Heredes got some nice, new sandals with a gift card he got for his birthday. Then we made a short pit stop at my parents house and went home.
I did something today that I hadn't done in a LOOONNNNGGGG time. I went by myself to the park and rollerbladed for about 35 mintues. Ohh it was awesome!!!! I loved it!
Now I am at home about to rest a bit and work on some stuff that I really need to get done by tomorrow night. God is good and made it a "What a day" day. In other words, a really great day. He is reminding me to just trust Him in every aspect of my life: emotionally, spiritually, physically, financially, etc. Goodnight...

Friday, October 19, 2007


Enjoy Chants!!

Movie Rating: Across the Universe

Last night Heredes and I went to Sunset Place to watch "Across the Universe". A couple of people had told us that it was "Awesome, Incredible"...I think it was pretty good. I think I have to watch it a second time. I'll give 3.2 out of 5 stars. As I write, Heredes is playing the music and I'm getting into it :) It was a very theatrical, psychadelic movie. I described it to my sister this way: "It was like watching a movie being High." Which I don't even know what that would be like, but you know, it was Hippie/Beatles era.
I think one of my favorite parts of the movie, besides the fact that the British actor was like so cute, was the Strawberry Fields song/scene. The pic of his artwork is so cool. Take a look. I loved it!

"Hey Jude" was also great. It was a pretty cool concept, making the storyline based off of the Beatle's music. I know that I am going to go research the Vietnam War now, thanks to the movie....
Another favorite was the beginning. So beautiful!!! Well, enjoy the pics and if you haven't seen it yet...go ahead and give it a try. Moulin Rouge still has to be one of my favorites. Next movie I want to see is Keira Knightley's "Atonement". Heredesis probably going to post about the movie, so make sure to read his fascinating critique.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

My Recap of My Naked Pastor...

So, I am a bit late on my recap of one of the coolest series I have been a part of: My Naked camera shut off on Sunday- October 14, 2007 in the green room. Some people had the opportunity to talk about how the series was a blessing to them before the camera shut off. Unfortunately, my shyness kicked in and I didn't say what I would have liked too. But I did write it on Pastor Troy's blog. I have to say that seeing my Pastor and his family open up like that says alot. And I am thankful for their honesty and authenticity and their obedience before God to do something out of their lazy-boy zone to reach those who are lost, hurting, depressed, saved, and those who need encouragement. It was great following everyone around- while at their house, at church, on trips, etc. It was nice to follow them in Chicago and Indiana, so I could see my husband :)

The series has shown me the importance of being real before God. In the moments of my anger, tiredness, insecurities- God wants be to just be real before Him. We taught the kids the same principal- authenticity. The children's ministry actually wrote the curriculum for this series and it went so well. My Life in a Fishbowl was so fun and this Sunday we have our recognition for all the students that attended all 5 weeks. Some blessed child will be winning a Nintendo DS. And the rest $5. gift cards to Coldstone. They had a terrific bible memory verse: "Nothing in all creation can be hidden from God. Everything lies open and clear before HIm and to HIm we must explain the way we have lived". Hebrews 4:13 And that was from memory. So, hopefully i got it :) But that verse is so clear, so naked and I hope they got it hidden in their hearts.

MyNakedPastor will run for two more weekends, without the camera, kids are jumping into Initiative, and we will soon start the Domino Effect series. Now I have to work on Trunk or Treat...which I'm a little behind on, but hopefully will get everything done by this weekend. I encourage everyone to continue praying for the Gramling family as they take a rest from the cameras and that they continue serving strong. And I read this devotional this morning, and the verse talked about: Let no unwholesome talk come out of OUR mouths, but only that to encourage and lift each other up...Epehsians....And I am just praying that only encouraging words would reach our pastor and not unwholesome talk ("garbage") :) But as we learned this past reach greatness, we must go through the pain...Drink from His cup...

God bless everyone....I finished my classical drawing class..I'll be posting those pictures up when i finish two of my drawings..have a great day!!!!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Happy Birthday to my Husband!!

Heredes turned 25 years old yesterday- October 13, 2007. I didn't get much time to post all week due to school and homework. Heredes had a very special day yesterday, because for the first time his wife surprised him!!! I was able to fool him into thinking that we were going to have a dinner for two, but he was totally wrong. I threw him a surprise party with a few friends that live near the west kendall area...Sorry friends from Broward- I know it would have been impossible for you guys to make it...but thank you Lilibeth and everyone else for cutting a cake for him at church.
My husband was soooo surprised, that I think he got a bit teary eyed. My mom and famiy did such a great sacrifice of love by cooking and making the party possible. Thank you everyone who made my husbands 25th year of life so special and meaningful. It was just so great!!!
Heredes- I love you handsome. I am happy God chose you for me, and me for you. You are my- ouglie bear, monkey, handsome and best friend. I am so honored to have you. I can't express in words how blessed I am. I am happy to do life with you. To serve God together, to laugh, cry, argue, eat, play raquet ball and beating is beautiful. And, I thank God for it!!! Besitos baby!!!! And remember (and it's a reminder for me too), that we have decided to drink from the cup, go through the things of life together- for God's refinement in our life- and that the BEST IS YET TO COME! ;)

Thursday, October 4, 2007

This is for you Sarinha....

This is my friend Sarah. Her family and her are Brazilian and are close friends of ours and my husband's family. They came over tonight to chat, drink coffe, and have cake. Sarah and I had alot of fun drawing and catching up on life. She likes to draw, loves to talk about how I'm nice and how she remembers Heredes and I back when we were boyfriend and girlfriend. She just said the cutest things. Thank you Sarah for making my night.

Of course, we had to visist And we wanted to share our art work. These are our beautiful Fairies. Created and named by US! It was a super fun night.

And I would like to wish my father in law- Jamil Ribeiro- a very HAPPY BIRTHDAY! Love you Pai! Muitas Felicidades! Um beijo!

Friday, September 28, 2007

Are you Watching? Here are his notes:

Innovation can sometimes feel like being naked in a public place.


Traditional Ears listen to everyone.
Innovative Ears LIMIT who they listen to.

People have equal value but NOT equal priority.

If you listen to everyone you won’t hear anyone.

How do I determine who I listen to…

Do they BELIEVE in me?
Do they LOVE me?
Do they have MORE WISDOM than me?

Traditional Eyes broaden my focus and narrow my influence
Innovative Eyes narrow my focus while broadening my influence

Protecting the Vision
Producing the Product
Pushing Out the Values

Traditional hands work on today’s task
Innovative hands are executing for tomorrow

Today’s success or failure is the result of yesterday’s execution

Traditional Feet make the next step a big step to prove you love God.
Innovative Feet make the next step small because the goal is to love God.
Always thinking: What is the NEXT step?

Traditional thinking – God blesses a method.
Innovative thinking – God blesses a person.

Do you know who YOU are?

Today is the Day...

Check out at 1:00 pm as Pastor Troy teaches at the Innovate Conference. Instead of having lunch break at 12:00, work a little longer and take your lunch break at 1:00 to see him teach. You can watch and comment on his blog at

Thursday, September 27, 2007

What's up with Heredes?

Well, Heredes is having a great time right now in Indiana...He told me about is time in Chicago and everything he got to see...I am so happy for him...Today, all I have done is try to catch up with the crew at the Innovate conference....I've been kinda of bummy....I got to chat with him online and it was wonderful...Here are some pics I took of him at the conference ;) He got a cookie, a notebook, there was a cool countdown, and he got to meet up with his friend Dan, who is one of the worship pastors there, & his wife...make sure to check out Dan's blogand the videos him and his wife have done...sooo talented....

I'm not going to lie, but it's been a bit hard without my husband...I don't know if it's cause i'm a newly wed... but I miss him sooo much....Last, night I stayed home and didn't go over my parents house...It was brave of me to stay home alone...Brave because I know Jesus was with me....I'm the biggest scardy cat of all time....But I got to stay home and just do stuff around the house....and unwind for a bit....

Well, I'm going to exercise and get ready to go to the parents house....Keep checking mynakedpastor.comand
Pastor Troy's Blog

Monday, September 24, 2007

Recap of the Weekend & Heroes Premiere

It has been a great weekend. My husband came back Saturday morning and I was sooooooo happy. I really missed him and miss him right now. He left on Sunday night to Chicago. He is there right now probably having dinner with Pastor Troy. I just can't express how much I miss him. The weekend was also exciting because Pastor Troy spoke on the second lesson of the My Naked Pastor Series- I get Angry. It was a great service. Even though I didn't stand up during the invitation, I do need improvement with anger issues. I've noticed that I get mad, maybe not totally angry, fairly quickly- especially on the road. I really have to pray before I hit the streets because every little person in their cars that don't respect the law really irritate me. So yea, I'm getting naked right now.

Sunday was Beach Baptism. I had the privilage to speak to one of my students and her brother about salvation and baptism. Their parents sat in with us and I am just so blessed by that family. Even though Heredes and I couldn't go to the Beach Baptism, we did see the whole thing through and let me tell you, it was soooooo cool. I saw my student and her brother take a pic with Pr. Troy and Stephanie. They are on his blog. Congrats guys! It was so cool to see couples getting baptized, wives getting baptized, husbands, teens, and one that really got me was a little elderly woman who got baptized. Phew, I almost broke down with tears of joy right there on my bed. It was so awesome. God is awesome. He is so great! And to see people taking a stand for Christ and making a commitment its just what its all about.

My Life in a Fishbowl has been going great. Our kids at Doral have really connected well and I think we are all having a great time learning about God's word and being Authentic. I bought two little fishes as our maskots. The kids called them Fiona and Shrek. This morning though, I found Shrek dead :( so I have to go back to Walmart and buy another one. I introduced Jesus is my Superhero and the kids loved it! I am going to record it next week and post it because that truly has to be the ultimate best kids worship song ever!

Well, Heredes is in the windy city and I hope Pr. Troy and him are enjoying dinner. My mom cooked this awesome Tilapia with Tostones and my dad made the salad. Delicious! And yesterday she made Aji de Gallina. Woo Hoo! And today the second season of HEROES started. Wow! Okay, as always I am lost but who's what makes the show. There are a couple of new characters and it just looks like it is going to be an amazing season. If you guys haven't seen any of the episodes, buy the DVD for season 1, finish it, and start the second season.

Well that's about it for today. I have an early and exciting day tomorrow :) and I'm just praying that Heredes can get back home earlier.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

I miss my husband....

My husband, Heredes Ribeirois in Tampa as we speak. I dropped him off last night at the Ft. Lauderdale Airport. I'll be staying with my family until Saturday morning. I totally miss him. It's so weird; I miss sleeping in my bed with my husband. My sister has been kind enough to share her queen size bed with me. Thank you Chanti. It's times like these that you realize how much loved and important people in your life really mean.

Heredes has been working really hard to help Pastor Troyand the church make MyNakedPastor possible. There is a bunch of people who are really doing a great job, like: Arturo, Megee, the staff, the video team, etc. But I just wanted to brag on my hubby because he really is doing alot. Good job handsome! Heredes comes back on Saturday morning and then, from my understanding, leaves again to Chicago & Indiana on Sunday night. Ohhhh WHHHYYY!!! I think he is out for like a whole week. :( Either way, I am very excited for him because he will be visiting Granger Community Church for the Innovate Conference(check out the video) & Willow Creek & taking mynakedpastorover there too.

So, I am very proud of my hubby. And I just wanted to mention that the new series started off on a great start. We had over 8,000+ in attendance or viewing the service on Saturday and Sunday. The teaching on I Fight was really good. Pastor Troy and Stephaniedid an excellent job teaching together. They are such a blessing! And I am really anxious about this weekend's topic on I Get Angry. God knows I need to hear that. The devotional that I am on today in our Fish Food book ( I think I am a day behind) gave the verses of Ephesians 4:31-32- "Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you." I don't think I need to go in depth about this verse; pretty clear on what it's saying.

So, now I will wash my car, run some errands, try to draw, and come back to my parent's house and not be home alone.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

The MyNakedPastor Series...

Officially starts TODAY! I am so excited. I am encouraging everyone to join us in prayer for this new series. My heart is yearning for God to just speak to me about what He sees about me that needs to change. That I would open up and get NAKED before Him. Pastor Troy, Gramling family, and everyone who is on staff & volunteers to make everything happen, I am praying for you guys. God is being honored and glorified. To my volunteers in the kid's ministry- you guys rock, I know you'll be prepared, and pray and have fun!

This weekend Pastor Troy will be speaking about I Fight. Stephanie and him will be speaking together on marriage, fights, etc. It's going to be great. If you guys get a chance and want to check it out, check out Everyone have a great weekend and Sat. or Sun. service. God bless!

Happy Birthday To You....

I would like to say Happy 21st Birthday to my sister Chantal Alexandra Meza. A.K.A.- Chanti. Since I haven't blogged in a while, I am going to blog and brag about my best friend, my sister. Many of you have seen the mynakedpastor UTube videos of my friend and her. Yes, that is my sister & no, that is not me. :) I can't believe she is 21! Man, life goes by fast.

My sister is the greatest person ever! She is soooo funny. I really think there isn't anyone who makes me laugh more than she does. She is my Mia Rudolph (SNL). She is in Texas this weekend. She is a hard worker. She works with my mom at Rowland Coffee Roasters...yup the wonderful people who make Cafe Pilon. (yum, nothing like Cuban coffee) She was in Vegas last week, got back on Tuesday and left on Thursday for Texas. She is doing a little marketing here and there & is at some music festival having a good time passing out coffee drinks. :) She is a full- time student & full-time worker. That alone is amazing.

I remember when we were younger, we would fight here and there. i think I have a picture of us with the same outfit (my mom found pleasure dressing us alike), my cabbage patch, & me pulling on her ear as we smile for the pic. I also remember having wrestling matches in our huge walk-in closet. Aww, good times, good times. I think when Heredes leaves to Indiana & Chicago I'll have to go over & have a wrestling match with the sis. I also remember me being so afraid of the dark. I think God healed me from that like at the age of But my sister was such a good sport at night. We use to have 3 beds in our room- our nanny's, my sister's, and mine. Of course, my bed had to be near the door (scary) and my sister's was in the middle. In the middle of the night, I would carry my sister out from her bed and place her on my bed and then I would sleep in her bed thinking that I would be safe because I had her on one side and my nanny on the other. The when morning came she would wake up and realize that she was not in her own bed. Let me tell you, she always looks out for me, even if I was the biggest scardy cat of all.

I remember our No Doubt, Googoosdolls, Dc Talk , and Oc Supertones times. Rock the universe, pink hair, spikes, and hot green. Ha, making our own headbands and shirts. Playing in the band. Playing soccer together on the same team. Woot woot! Learning through hard, weird times & getting stronger. (hopefully :D ) You being the most beautiful Maid of Honor, driving, working, and owning a dog.

I LOVE YOU CHANTS. I can't express that enough. You are beautiful inside and out. You have a heart that is bigger than stupid drama. Thank you for being my best friend, my sister, the one who beats me at every card & board game. lol. I love you and don't you forget that! I'm so happy that you & the family are at FRC. So happy! And I love to see you serve and SING. Yay! Can't wait to hear you.

Chants, happy birthday once again and IIIIIIIIIIIIIII lOOOOOOOOVVVVVVVEEEEEEEEE YOUUUUUU!!!! May God continue blessing you with many more wonderful years, so He can continue using you for His glory! You are wonderful. Enjoy the pic. LOL

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Get in tune...

Hey guys...The Launch Party was fun, fun, fun. And the most exciting part was to know how many people were watching. Everyone put such hard work into it- it was great!

Just want to encourage you guys to visit on a daily basis to see our pastor and his family get naked (being real). Keep them in your prayers and just be a part of it...Pastor Troy is doing 5 am devos., etc. So, watch and be a part of it. Thanks guys...

Friday, September 7, 2007

Gwen Stefani for you

I visited and I made myself as a paperdoll... or at least what I would like to look there I am...sooo cute! I dedicate it to my sister, who is in Vegas right now..

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

1st Classical Drawing Home Study

So, any year now I should be graduating from Art Education. I am taking my first ever Classical Drawing class. Heredes is always telling me to post my work up (even though it's not that great), so here it is- a master study on Saint Anne by Leonardo da Vinci.. I like my lines, but for sure I need to work on proportion. :) So, if you'd like to critique you are most welcome too..

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Jesus You're my Superhero!

So I was checking David Wakerly's blog...He's one of my favorite resource bloggers. He is one of the kids pastors at Hillsong Church Australia. Anyone who has served with me knows this song. Totally awesome....We will be doing it really soon at FRC. If you can, check his blog out because he has like 6 vidoes of kids doing this song. Thanks Dave!

Reminders about Marriage...

This morning I drove up with Heredes to Cooper City. It's a day of meetings, planning, and doing homework. As he is down stairs in a meeting, I was looking up some devotionals about marriage. Can you believe it! It will be 3 years of marriage on December 27. So far, marriage has been great. I am so blessed- I've been given such a great gift, my husband. I take that for granted to much I think. I take alot of things for granted. Sucks! As we all know, marriage is filled with good times, but sometimes those nasty, ugly little times show up. It is those bad times that I believe so many people give up on their marriages and end it with that ugly D- word. (divorce) I never want to even think about getting a divorce or even having that word come out of my mouth.

As our marriage grows, sometimes it can be tough. I'm not going to lie, I am such an emotional person that sometimes I let the stupid things pile up rather than having fun with my best and only half- HEREDES. Every month women, we get a little friend that passes by and ruins 4--6 days out of that month. I find myself so weak during that time..and i mean weak in every area of my life. Spiritually, physically, & emotionally. I think the only good thing that happens during this time is the fact that I can't stand seeing the house dirty, so I start to clean. :)

So, this morning I wanted to read a bit about what God has to say about marriage, feelings, and commitments through His word and some devotionals. First, I read my friend HP's devo. about how in the beginning GOD created everything and that TODAY (& everyday) I need to lift His glory up and not mine. Then I jumped into James McDonald's devo. about "...walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness." Galatians 5:16,22: meaning- Marcy, stop getting angry and bitter about stupid, small stuff and walk in the Spirit and let His fruits flourish within you.

Next, I stopped by and read a devo. about kids and parents (holy cow, that is another level that I am not even ready for), The next two devos. are the marriage ones and the first one is titled: Three Attitudes Needed in a Successful Marriage. The three attitudes are: trust, appreciation, and acceptance of differences. I sit here and think, Lord, I trust my husband. And when I say that I trust him...I really trust him. "Baby, I trust you." To my friends who are newly weds or are about to wed, trust your husband's and tell them that you trust them and encourage them in their most weakest moments. If I am an emotional freak, then that tells me that my husband struggles with something too. So, be sensitive to his needs and reaffirm him constantly.

Appreciation and acceptance of differences are areas I need to work on. I hope I am an appreciating wife. "Heredes- from the bottom of my heart, I want to say thank youuuu so much for washing the dishes yesterday. It means alot and I am so thankful. :)" The auther writes, be honest & sincere in you appreciation. Lastly, it's funny how "we" say that our husbands/wives are our better halves, but so many times we want to change them or wish they weren't the way they were. I'm guilty of that. So, I go back to HP's devo. about God creating each one of us so differently and uniquely; all creation is like that. So what right do I have to want to change my husband. Of course, there are always areas that need improvement, but I think we understand what the author is trying to say here.

The last devo. I want to share (bc this is getting to long) is titled "Building Marital Securtiy while Living in a Culture of Divorce". This is a conversation between the author and his wife. Something that really hit me was the question "How do you build security in 'our' marraige?" She answers by acknowldeging that she would never say the words hate, divorce, or leave, even if she thought them. ;) And second, (and I remember my mom always telling me this) is her vows were not only said to her husband, but they were a true commitment before the Lord. And that my friends is what I find so amazing. How true is that!!! My commitment the night of our wedding before the whole congregation, was for my husband, but above all to my Heavenly Father. She reminded me that "feelings will change so many times during the day because situations change- but my decison to love him was a commiment for life". A solid foundation in Christ will produce a solid foundation in the HaM relationship. LOL. I remember the song by Geoff Moore and the Distance: "Right here, right now, in the midst of the crowd...I stand alone and make my vow. Whatever it takes I will be faithful. Right here, right now, Let there be no doubt. Let every whisper, with every shout, Let the whole world know I will be faithful. This is my vow." (Oldskool, but great and so true)

These were all great reminders to just keep at it. Fight the good fight. Honor God, Remember I am not even close to being perfect or knowing it all. And that as a wife, I have a responsibilty, duty and service of commitment to my loving husband and my AWESOME, forgiving, merciful Father. My encouragment to all the women who are late in years in their marraiges, in the middle, are new, are about to get married, or are single and one day it will happen....keep those attidudes fresh in our brains: trust, appreciation, and acceptance of differences and remember your commitments. (not only in marriage, but in everything) I was having a weak weekend, but thank you Lord for pushing me to get out of my lazy, dull feelings and getting up and reading your word and thoughts to encourage me today in my relationships- especially my relationship with my husband.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Homemaking Degree...

Last week, while exercising on our step machine, I was watching the Today Show. This topic came up that I was totally ready to get into and debate about. The Southwestern Theological Seminary in FortWorth, TX has just offered a Homemaking Degree. A degree for women, who CHOOSE, to study how to be better moms and homemakers. You know, I really think that is great. During the interview, the president of Focus on the Family was on and some crazy feminist author and they were both sharing their sides on the topic. (I don't know if she's a feminist, but she sure had weak arguments.)

The lady argued that it was sexist, offering classes only for women and not men. She also argued that it was setting us back in time, to when women had no rights. The guy, on the other hand, was simply saying what is the big fuss, no one is forcing these women to study this, it's their choice. What bothered me the most was the two women, the author and the host, would not shut their mouths and let the guy speak. I truly hate that. When women try to make such a statement that they aren't fair to the other side. (Talk about sexist)

Today, when I got home from school, Heredes was watching the same argument again. This is like a week after. The host was very fair in listening to both sides. The "feminist" lady's voice started cracking because she was making a big deal out of nothing and had weak arguments.

Now, I want you to know that I don't believe that the only role of the woman is to stay home, clean, cook and take care of the kids. (even though I wouldn't mind it one day) I believe a woman is just as smart and capable of doing what a man can do. I mean their were judges who were women, one woman killed a man named Sisera, etc. The Proverbs 31 woman seems to do it all. Let's face it being a woman is wonderful! My problem is when women start taking this women's right thing way out of proportion. The issue here is not about being sexist and it's not about telling women to find a degree that is actually worth something, a degree you can fall on. I really think that if a woman, wife, mother wants to stay home and learn better and creative ways to make her home as peaceful and wonderful as possible, then she should feel comfortable doing so.

Ladies, if you don't like to cook or clean or whatever, fine, then you go get a lawyer's degree, but please, if a woman wants to CHOOSE to go and study homemaking let them be. I think our society is forgetting the importance of respect for spouses', the family, and the home. I strongly believe that the man is the head and should be guiding their homes. That is being lost. And dad's who do stay home and take care of the home, props to you. And women should be able to take care of their homes and kids and submit to their husbands. (that is another topic we can get into).

I just think God has given each of us, woman and man, very beautiful roles to live out. Unfortuanatley, sometimes most people don't care what God has to say and only care about what they want. The bottom line is: I don't have a problem if a woman wants to get a home making degree. Plus, how does anybody know if they haven't already received a degree in medicine, education, art, etc. and just want to add another degree to their plate. And, if you think staying home is easy work, trust me it's not!

Well, I just had to get that off my chest. It's been a good week. School was great. Have to draw alot and get ready for the weekend. DON'T FORGET TO CHECK OUT MYNAKEDPASTOR.COM. Whoo Hoo!

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

MyNakedPastor & other stuff

It's getting closer and closer: FRC's series is almost here. Now, we aren't talking about naked literally, but being AUTHENTIC and honest about who we are, what we go through, & how we deal with those things. Our Pastor Troy will be filmed live 24/7. (at least that's what i've heard) The topics are as follows: I get angry, I Fight, I'm insecure, I'm tired, & I'm tempted (my life).
The cool part about this series is the fact that the kids will be doing the same series & topics. Our creative kids team has been working very hard to come up with the curriculum and I must say the team is filled with fun, gasy (lol), creative people who love children & the ministry. It's going to rock. So, if you are at any campus, check out the adult service & pass by the kids and check out The Real LIfe of Isabella & Gianmarco: My life in a Fish bowl.

Before I head out, wanted to ask you guys to pray for our Peru team that leaves today. Pray for safety and that they can do exactly what God wants them to do . I wanted to give a big hug and shout out to my family/friends: Maria, Bob & Kristy Selecky. A whole family on a mission for Christ. Isn't that awesome. I love you guys. Bring

Monday, August 20, 2007

Everything Butt

I am moving into a funny post tonight. I was chatting with my sis, Chanti, on aim and she sent me her debut video. It was a team effort with our friends Johanna and Ceasar being part of the creation. I hope you enjoy this video, done my the mighty butt gang, as much as I did. Chanti, Johanna, & Ceasar THANK YOU for making me laugh so much. And sis, I never knew you had those dance moves. lol! Enjoy everyone.


Thursday, August 16, 2007

Praise GOD!!!

Thank you, first of all, to everyone who has been praying for my husband for these several years over his immigration situation. My husband went in today to court to figure out what would happen next. I just got his phone call on such awesome news. Now, I don't know all the details, but what the lawyer wanted happened. Oh, I am so grateful and, Lord, I love you. Your will is so perfect!!! The bottom line is that they terminated Heredes' case, which means that he can start from scratch and be able to get his paper work all fixed within a couple of months. The judges heard his story, cried, and believed him. God is a God of justice. Amen!

So, our request now is that the next few steps would run smoothly and, if all possible, quickly.

To my family in Brazil: this is what you guys have been praying for and hoping for. Obrigado por tudo! Pr. Jamil, Elzeli, Sarah, & Higor I love you guys and we really believe that soon we will see each other. Beijos pra voces y que Deus a bencao voces muito.
And thank you to my family as well for their prayers, help, and I know they are excited about their son-in-laws news. Thank you everyone!!!

Please don't forget to keep praying for Peru and the families hurting and for the Christians there to reach out.

Romans 12:12
"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer."

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Learning to truly trust Him...

Yesterday, I was talking to my friend Katrina R.. She is a special woman in my life. There aren't many who fill up my list of women who truly mean something to me. I don't know if that is a bad thing or a good thing, but I do know that those few women that set an example for me, mean the world to me. Katrina was my youth pastors wife. His name was/is Joshua Jefferson. To some of us who are in ministry today have very grateful hearts for his life and ministry while here on earth. You see, my youth pastor, softball coach, & leader passed away 3 years ago- August 4, 2004.

I can remember the day so clearly when we found out the news. I was at summer camp with my old church. The pastor called a few of us in to the lunch area- it had to be like 10 of us- and he told us that Joshua had just passed away. At first, it didn't click that it was my youth pastor, I thought it was another Joshua. When it sank in, I couldn't believe it. I ran, with my husband & friend Tati, outside to call Katrina. And after our short conversation, I remember going back in the lunch area, hugging my sister and Heredes and just crying. Oh, as I write this I am in tears, though I know he is in Heaven and having the time of his life! Amen!!! (He battled with a sickness since a youth & passed away at the age of 27. Katrina you can correct me on that.)

Katrina is a woman with a story- a beautiful story- that God has written and is still writing. God has blessed her with a new husband, that I have only met once, but know he is incredible. Katrina- THANK YOU! I love you with all my heart. I just want to scream it out!!!

You must be wondering why I am writing about this. Well, yesterday I found out that an ex- co-worker from Christ Fellowship Academy (I worked there like a year ago) passed away on Monday due to stomach cancer. I really didn't know her, but I do remember praying for her and seeing her face around campus. Also, FRC lost a dear member, but Heaven gained another soul. I remember my friends, the Riling's, who lost their husband and daddy to cancer not too long ago. Katrina's friend, who is 15, is also fighting a disease and taking medication and visiting doctors, etc. My friend Jescel, has just gotten back from her home country- the Philipines- visiting her ill mother and father, who are both fighting cancer. Check out her blog. She is an incredible woman, who will inspire you.

I don't know, but right now I'm thinking that this is a pretty sad post. I have yet to encounter such difficulties in my life and sometimes I think, Lord, if that day ever comes or when it comes, please help me be strong and hold on to You. I'm a weakling and I don't want to be.

I read this incredible devotional yesterday by Beth Moore. The title is "Songs in the Night"- Job 35:10; Acts 16:25-31. As a summary to the story in Acts, Paul and Silas are put in prison for casting a demon out (in the name of the Lord) of a young girl, because she was prophesying & being used as business. While in prison, after being beaten and locked away, they are praying and praising God. One night, the prison walls fell and the warden for sure thought that all the prisoners escaped. Just about to commit suicide, Paul yells and affirms him that everyone is inside; no one has left. Because of this, Paul and Silas' song & example, the warden asks what he must do to be saved. The end result: his whole household and himself accept Christ as Savior.

Here is Beth's conclusion: "When we sing a midnight song or speak praises in the darkest hours, the chains of hopelessness not only drop from our ankles but sometimes from the ankles of those who listen. The message is never clearer than when God's people refuse to cease their praises during intense suffering."

In the midst of every pain, every loss, every unanswered question, God is real, God is great! There is power in prayer and song. There is power in a life lived by praise. I am learning that- slowly but learning. I know that those I have mentioned above, have or are doing that. If you are not, can I encourage you to start today.

I share this for all of you, especially those who are going through the storm that will just make you stronger, and for me, a weakling who needs to hold on to this truth and live it out.

As I conclude, may you be blessed and remember to live a life of praise no matter what the circumstance. And if you can you please pray with me for: Peru that just got hit by a 7.9 earthquake. Things are looking okay, but just pray that nothing will arise during the night. For our campus, my family, and those who lost family members.

Also, for my husband as he goes tomorrow morning to court for his immigration situation. We are trusting God.

"Thank you God for your goodness, mercy and forgiveness. Thank you because You are a great God! I thank you for the good and the bad that comes our way. Thank you because suffering produces: perseverence, character, and hope. Thank you for those I know who have already gone through some suffering and yet, have been such an example of true faith and trust- in the midst of the pain and confusion. Thank you that Your will is perfect and I and all of us can trust that. Be with those today who are hurting, have questions, and are Yours. For those who don't know You, may they turn to You and not away from You. Give them the strength that they need & the song that will bless Your Name. In your powerful name Jesus, Amen."