Friday, November 20, 2015

The Inner Views of Dr. Alveda King

"For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and Him crucified."
I Corinthians 2:2

You never know when one moment, one event, or one decision can change and impact your life 
in ways you could never have beforehand imagined.

God does.
And He often orchestrates our steps and moves us in directions that will forever change us for the better.

Several months ago, I was invited to attend the then-upcoming Truth For A New Generation conference to volunteer as a member of Concerned Women For America's Prayer Team at the event.

At the time, we were in the throes of some very difficult trials in our personal lives,
and I saw no possibility of ever being able to do what I was being asked.
However, I prayed about it and told the Lord I was willing to go if He would remove the obstacles and work out a way.

Through happenings that were nothing short of miracles,
He did make a way, and my little family and I headed for the conference.

That weekend literally changed our lives.
One of those changes came about through our personally meeting many of the Concerned Women for America ladies, enjoying sweet fellowship with them, and through this, God giving me much-needed answers as to whether or not He wanted me to proceed in becoming more involved with CWA.
And another of those changes came through the wonderful privilege we had of listening to several of the key note speakers while there.

Today, God has opened the amazing opportunity for me to introduce you to one of those speakers!
The message she brought forth at TNG blessed and encouraged and inspired us in more ways than we can even express, and when we later contacted her to request an interview by phone,
she was beyond gracious and granted our request!

So, without further ado, I present to you,
author of King Rules and Director of African American Outreach with Priests for Life,
Dr. Alveda King.


Dr. Alveda King.

Cheryl:  God has placed you on the front lines of ministry in our time. He has given you a platform of your own to stand for truth and what is right. How does the battle your uncle, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., fought in his generation compare with the cultural wars you are fighting today?

Dr. Alveda King:  Well, as we look at cultural wars throughout the ages, we can go back to the 20th century when my father, Reverend A.D. King, Martin Luther’s brother, Martin Luther King, Jr., I also marched during those times, but all the way through the history of humanity, starting with the fall of man in the Garden of Eden, there has been strife and contention. And the most successful campaigns against those have been when people called on the name of the Lord and depended on the Lord and set aside strife, envy, and offense in all of that. So, that is what I have worked to do myself, and that’s what I’m trying to do now. 

Cheryl:  Evil is waging war upon God’s church, in these last days. Sometimes, there are so many battles being waged at one time, it is hard to keep up the fight, and God calls us to choose specific battles to fight, on an individual basis. What would you say are the most pressing issues God has placed upon your heart, personally, and what is the main burden of your unique ministry?

Dr. Alveda King:  Well, the most pressing issue now as an evangelist is to let people know about Jesus Christ and Him crucified and John 3:16. That can touch on so many other things...that touches on my pro-life work, my work for natural marriage and family, eradicating evil, even down to ISIS and that battle.  So, I think that when I look at it as in a perspective of prayer and evangelizing, then everything else can be included in that.

Cheryl:  How has growing up in the shadow of your uncle, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., shaped and molded your own ministry?

Dr. Alveda King:  Well, I came up under the shadow of God’s wings according to Psalms 91, and so, just being covered by God as the niece of Martin Luther King, Jr., and the daughter of his brother, Reverend A.D. King.  It’s just wonderful being in this family and having been brought up by people who love the Lord. 

Cheryl:  You are the Director of African-American Outreach for Priests for Life. Can you tell us more about this ministry?

Dr. Alveda King:  Well, Priests for Life is a Catholic ministry. I’m a non-denominational Christian, but I came in to work with African-American Outreach for Priests for Life over 10 years ago now. And so it’s been a beautiful experience informing the public about the harms of abortion and related products to that (abortion) that are harmful, chemicals and devices for birth control and all of that, how its genocide, the Silent No More Awareness Campaign, etc. So, I have been a part of Priests for Life for 10 years now, over 10 years actually, and they’ve just been a tremendous blessing to me.

Cheryl:  Can you share any childhood memories that you have with your father, as a minister, and your uncle (Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.)?  Is there anything you could share with us that we could share with our readers...just some special memories that you might have?

Dr. Alveda King:  I was blessed to go to church and hear them all preach.  Daddy King, my grandfather, who encouraged my mother not to abort me in 1950, not to have a D&C, abortion was illegal, but a D&C, and that he had seen me in a dream three years before I was born.  He described me.  I was born looking just like that.  My Mom and Dad had, during their marriage, five of us.  I was their firstborn.  Daddy King used to preach about faith, hope, and love, and the “least of these”, helping others, caring more about others than ourselves.  My father, A.D. King, preached about the miracles of Jesus, and Jesus became very real to me as a girl. Listening to my Daddy’s sermons, and then my uncle’s sermons on the Good Samaritan, for example, and The Love of God.  All of their sermons impacted my life and helped to shape and mold my spirituality. And it is true...train up a child in the way he or she should go, and when the child grows up, they won’t depart, or in my case, return to it.  So, I never really departed from the truth upon which I was raised.

Cheryl:  I am a Prayer Action Leader for Concerned Women for America, and as you well know, we really love to pray and get under the burden for those of you who are out there on the front lines.  How can we pray for you, specifically, and your ministry?  Are there needs or burdens upon your heart in this current season of your life that you would specifically like us to pray for?

Dr. Alveda King:  My heart longs that people will abandon and come away from strife, offense, and arguing and division and come together as one as a repentant world, as a repentant nation, a repentant community, a repentant family, a repentant individual, and ask God first to forgive us, then help us to learn to forgive others, and that we, in love, can move forward together. That is a sincere desire of my heart.

Cheryl:  Amen!  Thank you, dear sister!

Dr. Alveda King:  Bless you, my sister in Christ.  Thank you, and God bless!

A BIG thank you to Dr. Alveda King for making time in her busy schedule to share her
with us!

What a powerful, dear, precious woman of God!
I felt so humbled and so enjoyed my time with her on the phone.
It was an honor and a Divinely-orchestrated gift from our dear Lord!
And, what a blessing that at the end of our interview,
we were privileged to enjoy a sweet season of prayer together! 

If you would like to order your own copy of Dr. King's latest book, 
you can do so by clicking King Rules to be re-directed.

To learn more about Priests for Life and their pro-life work, click here.

Please keep Dr. King in your consistent prayers as she continues to carry on 
the Godly legacy of her amazing family.

(To read the first interview in this series, click The Inner Views of Joshua Becker.)
(To read the second interview in this series, click  The Inner Views of Lisa Newton.)

Friday, November 13, 2015

The Inner Views of Lisa Newton

"Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: 
for Thou hast created all things, and for Thy pleasure they are and were created."
Revelation 4:11

Many of you will remember that on January 17, 2014, a dear blogger friend so kindly published 
It was so wonderful to be able to express and more widely proclaim what the dear Lord has done for us, and to give Him glory as we shared how He answered prayer and sent us a miracle son after many years of infertility struggles and 12.5 years of marriage.

I was drawn to her blog because she, too, was struggling with infertility,
and my heart went out to her, as I read of her longing for a child and recalled the pain of my own battles.
I began to pray in earnest for her and her husband, begging God on a regular basis,
to send them a miracle baby of their own.

Fast forward to today...nearly two years later, and what do we find?
A reverse interview with her for Homespun Devotions!!!!
And with a surprise miracle tucked in, for good measure,
all glory be to God!

But, I don't want to spoil the surprise or hold you in suspense any longer, 
so without further ado, I introduce to you, 
writer of and woman behind the blog, Amateur Nester.
Tom and Lisa Newton
Photo by Vanessa Hicks

of infertility blogger and advocate,
 Lisa Newton.

Cheryl: Could you please tell us a little about yourself and your husband and how long you have been married?

Lisa:  My name is Lisa Newton and I've been married to my husband, Tom, for a little over 4 years. We live on the Central California Coast and have a spoiled orange-and-white cat named Hemingway. As I write this, I am 37 weeks pregnant with our first child, a girl. My husband is a vice-principal at a local school and a former varsity head football coach. I've spent the last 10 years working as a school librarian, but I recently quit my job to stay at home with our child and have been doing some library consulting for local schools instead.

Cheryl:  How did you meet and fall in love?

Lisa:  Tom grew up going to school and coaching football with the husband of one of my best friends, Heather. We met during a very awkward set-up at a party, and I wasn't interested because he was so different from me and very forward about his interest in me. To make a long story short, I dumped him after our third date, but ended up asking him for a second chance shortly after. We were married 6 months later! I wrote a guest post about the whole story on A Little Wife's Happy Life Blog.

Cheryl:  When did you first realize you were experiencing infertility, how many years have you struggled to conceive, and what exciting news do you have to share with us now?

Lisa:  I began to think we might have some issues with conceiving after we had been trying on our own for about 6 months. I had been charting my fertility signs and symptoms and I knew our "timing" was perfect. We started seeing a fertility specialist exactly one year after starting trying, and it took another 3 years for us to achieve a viable pregnancy. We went through 3 failed IUIs, one canceled IUI, and 3 cycles of IVF. I experienced a chemical pregnancy (very early miscarriage) after our first IVF cycle that was very disheartening. But as I said in the first question, our third IVF cycle this past March resulted in a pregnancy, and I'm due to give birth December 4!

Cheryl:  How has your steadfast faith in God carried you through the agonizing process of infertility? Can you name some specific times that you would not have made it through without your faith?

Lisa:  I think the low point came after our chemical pregnancy. The first IVF cycle was extremely grueling, and we were so ecstatic that it had worked after only one try. We called our families and our friends with the good news. But 48 hours later, we found out I had already lost the pregnancy, and we faced the terrible task of calling everyone again. I was devastated at the thought of going through another IVF. We had to rely on our belief that God was in control of everything and that He was going to work this out for good- even if we didn't understand how or why.

Another time when we had to rely on our faith was the time between our second and third IVF cycle. Due to work schedules and finances, we waited 8 months between those two IVF attempts. My husband was working 60+ hours a week teaching and coaching football, and I was in an unfulfilling job where I stayed just so we could afford IVF. Tom had to work on Sundays, so we weren't going to church often (I hated going alone) and when we did, it felt like there were babies everywhere. I felt very isolated, lonely and without a clear purpose. I listened to a lot of sermon podcasts and went to a Christian counselor who helped me deal with my depression.

Cheryl:  There is a unique transition process that comes to couples who have experienced long-term delays in being able to conceive and bear children. How are you (and your husband) adjusting yourselves in preparation for your new baby girl?

Lisa:  The biggest adjustment has been in our work. About a year ago, we began to feel the Lord was leading Tom away from coaching football. This was a very tough decision for him to make, but we knew we could not raise a family the way we wanted to with him working 60+ hours a week and unable to attend church. He stepped down from his coaching position about a month before we began our IVF cycle. Almost immediately after we found out we were pregnant, he was offered a promotion (from teacher to vice principal). Now that we no longer had to pay for further infertility treatments, his increase in income would cover my loss of income if I were to resign my job. A divine provision, indeed! His job is still demanding and he still works long hours, but we are now able to be active in our church and have more family time.

Additionally, we are trying to focus on keeping our marriage first after baby arrives instead of letting baby become the center of our lives.

Cheryl:  How has your blog, “Amateur Nester”, enriched your life during your waiting process?

Lisa:  The blog has been a true gift. It started off as a place where I thought I'd chronicle my decorating attempts, but I soon realized I'm not good at decorating! HA! Then we started our infertility journey and it became a place to turn our pain and struggle into something meaningful. As it has grown, I've been blessed to "meet" so many women who are going through similar journeys. Some of them have grown into true friends. It has given me a creative outlet, too, and I'm discovering that I really enjoy a lot of the other aspects of blogging like marketing, technical stuff, etc. Most importantly, I hope it has given other women hope in their journeys, too.

Cheryl:  Could you give us your favorite go-to Scriptures that have sustained you when hope grew dim?

Lisa:  In the year or two before I got married at age 30, I was really struggling with my singleness. I clung to Isaiah 51:3 and memorized it. When infertility became a part of my life, I went back to that verse over and over again- this time from a different perspective. I love how God's Word truly is "living." I've written two blog posts about how this verse continues to comfort me. You can find them here ( and here (

Cheryl:  What would you say to those in the infertility community who are still waiting on their miracle? How would you encourage them?

Lisa:  I recently listened to a beautiful episode of the Ransomed Heart Podcast about Psalm 27. ( The hosts talk about how verses 11-14 give us instruction on what to do while we wait for God's rescue. We are to stay with God, take heart, don't quit and stay with God. The podcast dives deep into each step (and talks about why it says "Stay with God" twice), and I encourage you to listen to it. But basically, it means Wait Patiently, Drink in the Lord's Strength, Don't Give up Hope, and Wait Patiently.

I think that advice is spot-on for anyone facing infertility. You have no choice but to wait, so wait confidently and patiently for God's timing. You will be faced with your own weakness and lack of control, so drink in the strength God will give you if you ask. You may be tempted to despair, but don't give up hope of God doing amazing and wondrous things in your life (even if it doesn't look how you think it should), and above all wait for His perfect timing.

A BIG thank you to Lisa for taking the time to interview with me
for our second installment of
all while she is just three weeks away from giving birth!!
What a trooper and true inspiration she is to us all!

(To read the first interview in this series, click The Inner Views of Joshua Becker.) 

I am SO grateful to God that He has answered prayer 
for Lisa and Tom,
and I can't wait to hear when their little one arrives!!

What an awesome GOD we do serve!!!!

"Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, 
With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible."
Matthew 19:26

I love the verses in Psalm 27:11-14 that Lisa shared and wanted to type them out for you here.

"Teach me thy way, O LORD, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.
Deliver me not over unto the will of mine enemies: 
for false witnesses are risen up against me, and such as breathe out cruelty.
I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.
Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and He shall strengthen thine heart: 
wait, I say, on the LORD."

No matter what you are going through, 
God's Word stands, my friend.
You can count on His promises being fulfilled for you, 
just like He fulfilled Lisa's mainstay verse, Isaiah 51:3, for her.

"For the LORD shall comfort Zion: He will comfort all her waste places; 
and He will make her wilderness like Eden, and her desert like the garden of the LORD; 
joy and gladness shall be found therein, thanksgiving, and the voice of melody."

I hope you enjoy Lisa's interview as much as I have,
and I ask that you please keep Lisa and Tom in your prayers 
for the safe, smooth delivery of a healthy baby girl!!!

God bless you, Lisa and Tom!!

Friday, November 6, 2015

The Inner Views of Joshua Becker

"Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver."
2 Corinthians 9:7

I have mentioned a few times in previous posts that God has been leading my family and me
towards a simpler, less encumbered life.
(This post and this post talk a bit more about this.)
He has dealt with us repeatedly about shifting our focus from the things of this world
to those things that are eternal.
At the beginning of this year, as I sought His will for my blogging "One Word for 2015",
the word He gave to me was "Prepare".
(You can read that post here.)

As we began to downsize, declutter, and minimize our physical belongings,
I found myself searching online for encouragement.
I sought for articles that were not only written about minimizing,
but ones that were written by those who share our spiritual points of view, as well,
for this is most important to me.

Early in my search, I came across a blog called Becoming Minimalist, written by Joshua Becker,
and right away I was reeled in and subscribed by email so as to not miss a single post.
I cannot begin to express how much my family and I have learned
and the depths of encouragement we have found while reading Joshua's blog.

So, when God began to lay it upon my heart to start conducting interviews for Homespun Devotions,
Joshua was one of the first people He brought to my mind.

Many of you probably already know him.
Perhaps you are already being blessed by the bounty of wisdom he bestows.
But, for those of you who have never met or heard of Joshua,
let me take this opportunity to introduce you, if I may.

The following is the very first installment of our new interview portion of Homespun Devotions!!!
I hope you enjoy reading as much as I enjoyed conducting the interview!

of minimalist,
 Joshua Becker.

Cheryl:  So, to get started, would you mind giving us an introduction and a brief explanation as to how you began your journey towards minimalism?

Joshua:  I’m Joshua Becker, founder of Becoming Minimalist.  I pastored for 15 years before doing this full-time.  The journey into minimalism happened on a Saturday morning when I was cleaning my garage, and my son was alone in the backyard.  After hours of working out in the garage, I suddenly had this realization that my possessions weren’t making me happy.  
The further realization was not only that my possessions weren’t making me happy, they were actually taking me away from the very things that did bring me happiness, and purpose, and fulfillment in life. That started the process of, "let’s get rid of the stuff that we don’t need, so we can focus more time on the things that do matter."  And it was a journey for us, I mean it took, I would say going through the house initially for us, it took 6-9 months. But, we moved, years later, into a smaller house, and even that move forced us to go through more things and more stuff that we didn’t need. So, just like you said, it’s a journey and where we are going and changing and generally speaking, I’m trying to think how to own less, rather than how to get more.

Cheryl:  And, from a Christian standpoint, how do you think living minimally relates to living a life pleasing to God?

Joshua:  I’ll mention two specific things:
  1. It forces me to learn more about my heart and motivations than if I hadn’t lived minimally. So, in Luke chapter 3 where John the Baptist is preparing the way for Jesus, the Israelites come to him, and say, "What do we have to do?  We’re ready..were with you, we want to get ready for the kingdom."  And he tells them to get rid of their extra clothes and extra food and to be content with what they have and don’t seek more and don’t extort for more. All of the instructions had to do with possessions, interestingly enough. What I found is, as we began getting rid of things, number one, we found that we were more tied to possessions than we thought we were, but number two, we realized that we had bought way more than we needed to in the first place, and so the question became, "what was in our hearts?"  What we were holding on to in our hearts that would allow us to buy far more stuff than we needed in the first place?  Things like selfishness and greed, things like jealousy and envy, like trying to impress people with the things that we had, being controlled by the world and its messages and advertisements more than we realized. We were forced to learn those things that I don’t think we would have ever had to learn before. So, there’s the introspection of what was motivating my heart and life.
  2. And then, the second one is, we were freed up.  Because we were spending less time and money and energy caring for the things that we owned or things that we were trying to own, we discovered that we had more opportunity to follow God with our whole lives. Which I think is Jesus’ point in Luke 18 where the rich young ruler comes to follow Him and Jesus says, "Well, if you really want to experience eternal life, sell your possessions, give to the poor, and then come follow Me."  That is to say, we can’t really appreciate all of the abundant life that God is offering if we are carrying around a whole bunch of things that we don’t need.
Cheryl:  In today's culture, there is such a push to accumulate earthly goods.  If Jesus lived on earth today, what steps do you think He would take to avoid falling prey to being caught up in the chaos and consumerism madness so prevalent in our modern world?

Joshua:  Well, I think He would probably live very similar to how He lived before. First of all, singular focus, single-minded focus, that He was here to glorify God, that He was to do what God called Him to do, and that He was going to be obedient to that even though the world around Him wanted Him to do something different.  What’s interesting about Jesus is that you find Him doing the same thing that He tells us to do. And by that I mean, He lived every day in the Spirit.  We find Him leaving the towns to go spend time alone with God, and He would routinely remove Himself from culture, from society, from people, so that He could sit and just listen to God and reorient His will and His heart around Him.  So, I think that He would do the same, and I think that is what we are to do.  So much of that is walking in the Spirit, and I think it was Dallas Willard who said, “We’re not called to live the same life as Jesus lived. But, we are called to live our life the way Jesus would live our life.”  I think it’s kind of a fascinating story in Mark chapter 5 where the demon-possessed man is healed and Jesus was getting ready to leave with His disciples, and the demon-possessed man, who is no longer demon-possessed, but now a healed man, comes to Jesus, and he says, "I’m ready to go, I’m ready to leave everything and follow You", and Jesus says, "No, no, go back home, go back home and live in your house, be My witness in your city."  This is so interesting because He had just called His 12 apostles to give up everything…to leave everything…to leave their jobs, to leave there homes, their families, and to follow Him, and then here’s another guy who is ready to do it and Jesus says, "No, no, that’s not the call that I have on your life. You go live in your home."  You know I used to think of Mother Teresa, and how she left everything.  That’s not what we are all called to do, but we are all called to walk in the Spirit and live the life that He’s called us to…that’s single-focused, for sure.

Cheryl:  On a personal level, how has becoming a minimalist affected and enhanced your ministry and your God-given calling?  (What doors has it opened for you, how has it enlarged your spiritual realm of influence and effectiveness, etc.)

Joshua:  Numerically speaking, certainly it has given me a wider audience, more people to reach and talk to, and more opportunities for speaking and writing.  I was just thinking about this today. It has given me a passion for a single change…there are a lot of things going on in the church, a lot of conversation, and a lot of unhealthy movements, a lot of bad things in the church that could and should be changed, but I don’t feel called, at least at this point in life, to be addressing all of those things, but I do feel like God is calling me to speak to this one area and to challenge Christians in this spot. So it is has given me a new focus and a new change. But, I think, broader speaking, there’s a parable in Luke chapter 8 where the parable of the sower that sows the seeds all over, and the one falls on the path and never grows, the one falls on the rock and starts to grow but gets burned up, the 3rd seed grows roots but the fruit gets choked out by the weeds, then the 4th seed actually grows roots and grows fruit. Jesus comes back and’s one of the rare parables where He explains what He meant...when He gets to the 3rd seed, the seed that grows roots but doesn’t bear fruit, He says the weeds that choked out the fruit are - riches, pleasures and worries. And, it’s not even the love of riches, it’s not the love of pleasure, but it’s almost the mere existence of riches and pleasures and the worry that accompanies it that chokes out the fruit of the seed.  I think the American church is actually the third seed, that we are not nearly as fruitful as we could be, because the riches and the pursuit of possessions and the worry that come with it are choking out the fruitfulness of so many. So many of us, myself included, for so many years and probably even still to this day, in some points. My ministry has changed, but I think part of that is considering that parable, and as we remove those things, we begin to see ministry opportunities that we didn’t notice before.

Cheryl:  Acts 2:44,45 says, ~All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need.~  And Acts 4:32 says, ~All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. ~ From a pastor’s standpoint, how do you think these two passages of Scripture contribute to a minimalistic mindset, and what would happen in our world today if we, as believers, adapted this lifestyle?

Joshua:  I think what would happen is we would discover the very thing that so many of us are looking for in our money. By that I mean, as we begin living this out, I have discovered that there is no more secure a place to be, financially-speaking, or any way speaking, that there is nothing more secure than walking in the will of God and honoring Him with the things that I have. What I think happens is, without even realizing it, so many Christians are looking for security in their money, and they’re looking for security in their possessions, and they live with this mindset that, "Once I feel secure with my bank account, then I will begin to share and then, I’ll become generous."  And so, generosity is always, "I wish I could give, but I just can’t, because we don’t have enough money or we’re worried about this."  In reality, it works completely opposite, that when we become generous, when we begin sharing what we have, when we begin doing what God has called us to do, caring for the widow and the orphan, caring for those who have need, when we begin doing those things, we find that we are far more secure than we ever thought we were, because our security is in God, not in a bank account somewhere. And so, what I think would happen is obviously, the poor would be cared for and more needs would be met, so those lives would improve, but even more than that, that the person who started sharing, and that the person who became generous would find the security and the happiness that they’ve been looking for and everything they’ve been trying to accumulate all along the way.

Cheryl:  I just became aware of  The Hope Effect as I was reading Evelyn Rennich's latest blog post. I was instantly moved and blessed to learn more about it at the website.  I think it is an amazing thing you are doing, and I was wondering if you would like to share more about it with our readers?

(Here, I insert a video where Joshua explains his new outreach in detail.)

If video doesn't load, click here.

Joshua:  It’s interesting that, most people think that the orphan care crisis is being addressed.  I think most people think that we have orphanages set up, and orphans go there.  In reality, it is a pretty big problem, and it’s a problem that we have known about for decades.  It's not only that there are more orphans that need to be cared for, but it's also that the typical model of the orphanage where there’s 50 kids and just a couple of adults is actually having some pretty harmful effects on kids.  God’s original design for human development is that kids would be raised in a family.  This is the model, this is the design.  Not that they would be raised in these institutions with such high kid-to-adult ratios. So, we are hoping to address that, and while we’re not the first, there are other people doing it pretty well, we don’t think globally, or certainly not nationally, that people even know about it or that people are talking about it. And so, we’re hoping to do this in a way that helps more people see that there is a problem, and see that there are solutions out there, and then give them a very easy way to get involved to start making a difference. So, that’s what The Hope Effect is.

Cheryl: And the first one that you’re opening is going to be in Honduras, is that right?

Joshua:  There’s an orphanage in Honduras called La Providencia. They’ve been around about 8 or 10 years, and they do this family model. They put up homes and they put 6 orphans and a Mom and Dad in these homes. So, our first project is, we are going to build for them a home on their campus. We’re going to build it and fund it for 2 years. They have 10 years of experience, so there’s a lot that we can learn, plus they have everything in place already, like a director, a place to find parents, and everything.  So, our first project is building a home on their campus for them, and then, our next campus project is likely to be in Mexico.  This is what we’re planning on now, if things don’t change.

Cheryl:  That’s wonderful!  What a vision you have to do that! You’re right, I read those Scriptures about the Lord wanting us to take care of the orphans… heart goes out to them, but I didn’t really comprehend the gravity and how it affects their lives. Thank God for laying this on your heart, and I hope and pray He will bless you abundantly with that and in every other part of your ministry. You are making such a difference!

Joshua:  Thank you.  I appreciate it.  Thanks for looking me up and having a conversation with me today.  It was fun.

Cheryl:  I appreciate it so very much. I hope God will bless you and continue to enlarge your coasts and just bless everything you’re doing.  We’ll be praying for you, that’s for sure.  I know you are out there on the front lines, and this is not an easy time to be there, especially with everything going on in our world with Christians, and so, may God just bless you and protect you and your family and just be with you every step of the way. 

A BIG thank you to Joshua for taking the time to share his
with us!

I found him to be very humble and kind and such a blessing and pleasure to talk to.
I absolutely love the insights he shared.
Such profound wisdom, and such a great help to my family and me on our current journey!
Please keep Joshua and his family and their outreaches of ministry in your prayers,
and please remember the orphans.

"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this:  to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world."
James 1:27

"For the LORD your God is the God of gods and Lord of lords. He is the great God, the mighty and awesome God, Who shows no partiality and cannot be bribed.
He ensures that orphans and widows receive justice. 
He shows love to the foreigners living among you and gives them food and clothing."
Deuteronomy 10:17,18

How can YOU help????

Here are some ways....

Another blog that I follow and find wonderfully inspiring is Smallish, written by 
Evelyn Rennich.

In her latest post called, "How Minimalism Can Change The World", she explains how adapting a minimalist mindset enables us to give more bountifully to others and to make more of a positive difference in our world.
During the whole month of November, Evelyn is hosting a fundraiser for The Hope Effect.
 She makes it super easy to give to this worthy cause!
All you have to do is click HERE and donate, as the Lord leads!
No gift is too small.  :)


In his latest post, Joshua Becker also offers other ways you can become involved,
including a recurring monthly $10 (or any amount) donation, by clicking HERE.


For all of my blogging friends, please click HERE for a special way YOU can help!
Together, by God's grace, we can and will make a difference!

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

Inner Views

"Iron sharpens iron; so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend."
Proverbs 27:17

For some time now, the Lord has laid an idea upon my heart concerning Homespun Devotions.
In one way, this idea is super exciting to me.
In another way, it scares me to pieces.

Because I don't feel like I know how to do what He is asking me to do.
I've never done it before, and anyone who has read this blog for long at all
can vouch for the well-known fact that I do not do well with change,
and unfamiliar paths make me extremely uncomfortable.

I suppose most of us are this way, at least to a certain extent.

So, when the Lord first brought it to my mind, 
my first reaction was to bulk.
The excitement, thrilling as it was,
was quickly overpowered by fear and feelings of inadequacy.
So, pretty quickly I sort of ignored the idea and shoved it to the back of my mind.

I don't know how it works with you, but when God wants me to do something,
when He really, really wants me to do it,
I don't get off so easy.
What starts out as a gentle pressure, becomes heavier and more weighty,
until I finally realize that I am not going to please Him if I don't do what He is asking me to do,
regardless how difficult it is for me.

I have served Him long enough to know that whatever He is asking,
no matter how hard it is,
is easier, by far, than to experience His displeasure.

I SO want to please Him with my life and fulfill the reason He allows me to live.

So, the thought kept plaguing me and coming up at the most inopportune times.
It would just pop on to the horizon and interrupt whatever else I was thinking,
until, one day, early this summer, I finally surrendered and told God I would do it.

It took all the courage I could muster, but back in the month of June,
 I sent an email to someone I respect,
and I began the process of starting this thing God has been asking me to do.
And now, the request I made in that original June email has been granted!

So, very soon...hopefully within the next few days, you should be seeing a new post in your inbox from me, and it will begin a new series on Homespun Devotions called...

Zachary came up with the name and the logo, and I loved both of them instantly!

Thank you, Zach!
Your support and love means more than I could ever begin to say.  :~)

(I got to thinking that his play on words could be in use already,
so I researched it, and sure enough, Houston Public Media produces a television show by this name.
Oh, my.
I am checking into whether or not I am infringing on any rights or doing anything unethical.
If I find that I am, I will, of course, rename our little segment here.
If not, we'll keep it, because I just like it so much!)

What is, you ask?

is...well, interviews, basically, and in a nutshell.
I will be talking to people, asking for their inner views during our interview.

I will record them and publish them here for you to read, 
and, in the process, hopefully I will be able to introduce you to some people you may never have "met" before.

These will be people who inspire me.
People who are "iron-sharpening", who "sharpen my countenance" and enhance my walk with God.
People who make me want to be a better person.
People who stir up a hunger in me to be more like Jesus.
People who have specific missions and causes that I believe are important and worth supporting.
They may be online bloggers, real-life family members, friends, loved ones, and acquaintances,
maybe even a celebrity, or two, now and then!!!
Most of all, these will be people I believe God has directed me to connect with and/or talk to.

Though I have endured many job interviews, which made me very uncomfortable, by the way,
I had never conducted an interview in my life...until today, that is. 
Well, I take that back...I have been enjoying "interviewing" Zach and Austin from time to time
and recording their thoughts on paper or video to go back and read or watch later.
It is amazing how their likes and dislikes change as they grow up!

So, even though I feel I am way over my head, and this, in some ways, is taking me far from my comfort zone, I know God is leading and wants this to happen, so He will be my Guide.

I am not sure, at this point, how often will be published
or how many interviews there will be.
They will be interspersed randomly, I suppose, among regular Homespun Devotions blog posts.
I have a long list of prospective interviewees to contact,
so, if I have my way, it will be long-lasting!
But, this isn't my blog, and the Owner and Director has every right to lead as He so chooses
and deems best.  :)

For now, be on the lookout for the very first


I will be introducing a very special guest who has greatly inspired my family and me and taught us so much on our journey towards a simpler, more minimalistic life.
Stay tuned!
You will NOT want to miss this!!