He executes justice for the oppressed and gives food to the hungry. The LORD sets prisoners free, the LORD gives sight to the blind, he lifts up those who are bowed down, the LORD loves those who live justly. The LORD watches over the immigrant and sustains the fatherless and the widow, but he frustrates the ways of the wicked. -Psalm 146:7-9

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Signed Up To Die

I'm always encouraged by the blogs I read.  Some I have listed here, many I don't (only because I hate clutter and for some odd reason I feel like if I add anymore to this site your brain may have a melt down).
The Pastor of our church plant Strong Tower at Washington park, wrote one of the MOST convicting, real, yet encouraging blog post. I wanted to share it with you. I won't post it in its entirety, but I will leave you with the link to check it out. God has only one goal for us here on earth, thats to  KNOW HIM & make HIM known and to all. No matter what the cost, we are called as believers to DIE daily.

Its what we signed up for when Jesus called us to discipleship and we said yes. I pray the message in this blog post brings me to remember the cost of discipleship and the joy of counting this world and all it has to offer as a lost so that I may KNOW HIM.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

I Will Not Loose Hope

As I look at these faces and I can't help but wonder what their lives will be like10 years from now.

Will they finish high school? Will they be enrolled in college somewhere? (*coughing* THE Alabama State University) Will they be apart of the new thing God is doing in our hood in restoring and building healthy, godly marriages and or relationships??


Will they have fallen prey to teen pregnancy? Will I see the same girls my daughter is playing with, who I have into my home day in and day out, walking the streets, mind gone from drugs or prostitution?

Lord, I hope NOT. I pray it may never be!! I know God, I know He is powerful, I know He has a plan, I believe He is trustworthy.
Even when I log into Facebook and read about the 14 yr.old thats pregnant, or the 15 year old who has just had her second abortion, even still in tears,and heart burning with saddness, I will look to the hills and remember OUR God, the Father of Jacob, Abraham and Issac is MIGHTY to save! There is hope for those who are not on that path, as well as HOPE for the girls who have fallen. May God have mercy on every little girl in this world. May He restore dignity to the broken, and may HE encourage those are are fighting to stay pure, and walk blamelessly before HiM.

I will not loose HOpE, even though everything around me seems broken. God can and will restore! To HIM be the glory!!

O Israel, hope in the LORD
From this time forth and forever.
Psalm 131:3

Be strong and let your heart take courage,
All you who hope in the LORD.
Psalm 31:24

And now, Lord, for what do I wait? My hope is in You.
Psalm 39:7

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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Degree Varsity Award

I once read, "if you want to change the world, mentor a child". Of course I know that Christ is our only HOPE, yet, I also believe Jesus use the impact we have on the next generation to influence what our world will be like. Every Tuesday and Friday, I have the priviledge to be a part of that change I want to see. I get to  hang out with 12 amazing little girls. How? Through our cheerleading team. Our cheerleading program, which started 3 years ago, has become one of CGM favorite extra curricular activites amongst the girls in our after school program. Before then, the girls would always run up to my husband and ask," why are yall always doing stuff for the boys? Ya'll must dont like the girls or somethin". My husband would gently explain to them, He does care for them, it's just that it would look very weird for a baldhead 33 year old man hanging out with a group of middle school and high school girls. #epicfail #prision. No, we dont need that.

Anyway, the Lord quickly gave me a burden to dig up my past love for this sport. I remember cheering back in elementary and junior high(I was even captian one year, can you believe it?) and how much fun it was. I also remember all of the girls I spent time with, including my coach. We had some pretty fun times together. If I didnt have that to do back then, there's no telling what road I may have traveled down. It definitely kept me busy and off the streets. (at least for a little while)

For the past couple of years, we've  had a constant struggle as a team to raise funds to keep this  going. These girls love to cheer, even if we didnt have a team to cheer for, I really believe they would still find a reason to cheer for CGM during other functions. In efforts to not have to deal with such stress of paying for uniforms, I entered the girls into a contest to win $5000. I was contacted a week ago and found out we were finalist!!! I almost fell out when I got the letter! The girls are thrilled and sitting on the edge of their seats, praying the Lord pours His favor out on us to win this money. I cant begin to even tell you how far this will go on this team and even through our community. In order for us to win, we need your help!

Please go to www.facebook.com/dontfretthesweat  :click the Varsity Awards tab to the left and when you see our team pic, click on it to VOTE! Afterwards, please share the link on your profile page and ask your friends to come back DAILY to vote for us! I can, and I can't imagine how the Lord will and could use this money to further HIS KINGDOM and GOSPEL. Being in the lives of these girls through cheerleading, has not only encouraged me, but impacted me as well. Their, hunger for God, zeal for Jesus and one another has blown me away. These girls are growing up in a neighborhood where they are constantly bombarded with lies from the streets(  love of money, sex, pre-teen and teen pregnancy, drugs, alcohol abuse, ect..)  and they're daily having to endure some very difficult, sweat producing moments.

Yet, in the midst of such difficulty they are smilling and rejocing that now, the GIRLS finally has something to do!! Please, help us keep our team alive.

Last day to vote: Oct. 17 :) Thank you

Saturday, October 1, 2011

We Are Not Forgotten

Outside of our home, our ministry building and a housing project a couple blocks away from my house are the two main places I spend the bulk of my time. Today, my daughter and I celebrated the birthday of a young girl in our neighborhood. We decided to  join in on the fun at her surprise birthday party. There were soo many kids!! I cant even begin to explain how many random children were at this party. I say random because everyone knows when you have a gathering in the projects, people don't care if you know them or not, they are coming to join in on the fun! Many invite themselves to these function and blend in well with YOUR family. I mean it is hilarious!! 
The entire time I was there, I would hear people (outside of the loud songs filled with profanity) say,
"who are you", and "who told you, you could come here", yet, they were never asked to leave. (not that they should, it was just funny)

Anyway, a lot of things that happened at this party really made me nervous. Just the thought of my daughter and other kids being exposed to many things even me as an adult would prefer not to know or see. ( I mean, we were dead smack in the projects, all kind of stuff was going on) I always find myself asking God, "what is the point, like, why am I here outside of building a genuine relationship with my neighbors." Is this really, worth it"?  and "Where are you in all of this"? When life in the hood gets rough, you can at times feel forgotten, forsaken, alone.

As I sat there on the porch of my friends house, many of the neighborhood kids would run up to me and say, "Hey, Ms Micole!!" "Ms. Micole, when Imma get to come to yo house"? Hugging me, kissing me and some would just walk up and lay on my arm. Out of the 20  something kids that where there, I only knew 5. Many of the kids who where calling my name, I had no idea who they were and how they knew me. Why were they so loving? Why is it every time I see them smile, I see heaven? I see Jesus?


That's it. God was there, right dab smack in the middle of the projects at this birthday party amongst all these kids, God showed up. From my view on the porch you could see the flowers that were placed in the grass in remembrance  of two teens who murder from a drive by earlier in the month, and yet, I saw God.
I was reminded today, that I am not forgotten, my neighborhood is not forgotten. Just as these kids knew me and yet, I didn't know them, God was reminding me that HE TOO ALWAYS KNOWS MY NAME and I, my family, these kids are not forgotten, nor forsaken by HIM. My hood is never forgotten. God knows the name of each and ever last child and adult in my neighborhood and is sovereignly watching over us all. 
During those times, of busyness, laziness and pride, when I act as if I don't know God, or because of the idols of my heart I don't remember HIM...God still remembers me. When gun shots fill the streets, screams and cries, God knows, hears our prayers and cries for help and remembers us all. I'm thankful today that I serve a GOD who is forever mindful of me and all the rest of His creation. His grace is amazing, and I desire to just sit in it all the days of my life!

Isaiah 49:16 - "Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands;..."