Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Jesus Iceburgs and warewolves

We had our first Girls Book Club yesterday and it was awesome! Sitting there with tea and coffee, sugar being poured out of a cracked tea pot, lemon cupcakes, not quite hot anymore popcorn, using my guitar case as a coffee table, We sat on the floor despite the many comfy chairs and couches, and we talked. One of the girls there posted this on her facebook account that evening:
So according to Girls book club God is a werewolf, Jesus is an iceberg, we're not supposed to be nice, and we should all dance our life away =)

Allow me to explain: We talked about how warm God is, and how he shapes us in a gentle way, by embracing us in his warm hug, just like how in the twilight series the werewolves are have body temps that are way higher then a humans. Then we talked about the difference between God the Father Son and Holy Spirit. We compared their personalities with water. Jesus is solid and touchable like ice, the holy spirit is everywhere like water, and the Father is mysterious like steam.

Conversation went on to the topic of who Jesus is and what we know about him now that we didn't know before. We talked about how he was blunt, not always the "nice" guy everyone made him out to be. He wasn't nice, but he was always good. There's a difference.

And for the dance, I have to take the blame for that one. I was sharing about how my perspective has changed from thinking that following God was sorta like a dog sled team, just running and the view never changes, and if you get out of line you get disciplined; to thinking of it like a dance. He is leading the dance, so I am following him, but we are dancing together.

So Jesus is an iceberg, God is a werewolf, we aren't supposed to be nice, and we should dance our lives away! I'm excited to see what we learn next week!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Beautiful desaster


the words to this song describe so well what is happening in the hearts and minds of young girls.


So young, all of them. Coming from me, the 21 year old that sounds strange. Today I was privileged to go along with all of the grade 8's at the school to a lake for a day of games and team activities. What a great tradition! Grade 8 is when the lines are drawn in high school. If you are an outsider in grade 8, the hope of changing your social status isn't that optimistic over the next few years. Bullies and victims are made as these young teens enter the world of high school. Who is sitting along during lunch, who is along on the bus... we all remember those days. During the lunch break I took the opportunity to sit with a group of student council kids. They were reminiscing about their grade 8 survivor day. I asked what was different about life in grade 10 to life in grade 8. One girl piped up and said,
Looking at these kids I forgot how...insecure of a feeling it was.
Trying to make your mark, take your place, find friends. Its a really tough year. Very intimidating. I know what this feeling is like as an adult, for I am frequently the youngest least educated person in the room of my coworkers and friends. I have the emotional and mental and spiritual maturity to deal with it. These tiny teens simply dont. I am really hoping to get to know more of the grade 8's this year, to try to help in their journeys through high school. For those of you who pray, these are kids who will need your prayers!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

if pictures are worth a thousand words, what about moving pictures?

Go light your world, Chris Rice


Seven Years, Norah Jones


Friday, September 18, 2009

do you get IT?

So i just got home from speaking at an event called Langley Together. It went really well. Here is my talk that I gave. I pray that some people GOT IT.

My name is Carmen, I'm a wife, daughter, blogger, Jesus follower, steak eater, spilly talker, youth worker, snowboarder. I am a bungee jumping, see doing, Disney song singing, country loving, jeep driving, coffee shop junkie who is captivated by the face of Jesus.
God has called me one of his watchmen, it is my job to stand and look, and then to call the troops into action, and to announce with the trumpet when the King is coming home! Let me tell you about my king...
He’s the King of Righteousness
He’s the King of the Ages
He’s the King of Heaven
He’s the King of Glory
He’s the King of Kings
and He is the Lord of Lords
He’s enduringly strong
He’s entirely sincere
He’s eternally steadfast
He’s immortally graceful
He’s imperially powerful
He’s impartially merciful
He sympathises and He saves
He guards and He guides
He heals the sick
He cleansed the lepers
He forgives sinners
He discharges debtors
He delivers the captives
He defends the feeble
He blesses the young
He serves the unfortunate
He regards the aged
He rewards the diligent
And He beautifies the meek
I wish I could describe Him to you
He’s indescribable
He’s incomprehensible
He’s invincible
He’s irresistible
I’m trying to tell you
The heaven of heavens cannot contain Him
Let alone a man explain Him
You can’t get Him out of your mind
You can’t get Him off of your hands
You can’t outlive Him
And you can’t live without Him
The Pharisees couldn’t stand Him
but they found out they couldn’t stop Him
Pilate couldn’t find any fault in Him
The witnesses couldn’t get their testimonies to agree
And Herod couldn’t kill Him
Death couldn’t handle Him
And the grave couldn’t hold Him
That’s my King!

Who else here knows my king!?

Do you get IT?
Do you get IT? Have you heard the good news? Do you understand how amazing grace is? Have you been rattled by the earth shattering truth of John 3:16? That God loved us so much, even while we were still in our sin, that he sent his son to save us that we may be in him and him in us? Do you understand how incredible that is? Has it changed your life? Have you fallen in love with this selfless God? Did you get IT? Some people get IT and some people don’t. My prayer is that all of you would leave here tonight with IT and share IT with everyone you know.

I got IT
The night I got IT I will never forget. It was Christmas time and I was volunteering at a drop in center. 2006. Our challenge that night was to have a conversation with a teen about the real story of Christmas. So I was hanging out with a group of about 8 preteens. So I asked them if they knew the first Christmas story. None of them had. The feeling was like catching an edge on a wake board, and breaking your fall with your face on the water and getting your sinuses cleared out really quickly. These kids had never even heard the Christmas story! I thought everyone knew that story, even if they didn’t believe it or know the significance of it! One girl thought she knew it and proceeded to tell me this really twisted story of the wise men and Santa clause and the Easter bunny made a guest appearance. I was so shocked. So I grabbed my friend Hannah and we did a little mime, I told the story and she acted it out.
Later on that night I walking a girl home and she started to pour her heart out to me telling me about how she tried to commit suicide the month before. She was only 12. It had been her second attempt.
That night I drove home with my friend Hannah, she went inside the house, and I stayed outside. I was going to go sit on the grass under the stars and just think and pray about everything that happened that day. I only made it half way across the lawn when IT hit me. I collapsed to my knees and it started to pour with rain. I balled my eyes out rocking back and forth under the weight of it. All I could do was repeat "They don’t know" "They simply don’t know" over and over again. The awareness of the weight of their pain and loneliness laid heavy on me. You see I grew up a Christian. I have always known the hope of Jesus. I have always known life with him. I cant imagine going through life without him. It would be like walking around blind and terrified. I would have stayed collapsed in the rain, but God spoke to me. I got up from that wet grass that night believing something, and carrying a mission I only heard whispers of before, that there are dying people out there, and I have the answer of Life they need. That people were suffering when they didn’t have too. I have been telling everyone I can about Jesus since, because they simply don’t know. IT GOT TO ME AND IT HASN’T LET ME GO.

So what is it? I cant tell you, but I can tell you what it isnt!

What IT isn't
There was a Christian man debating with an atheist friend of his about the existence of God. When he asked his friend why he doesn’t believe God is real his friend answered with this,
"The reason I don't believe in God is because the Christians don't believe in God." The man was shocked at this, "What makes you say that?" The atheist friend replied "How do I know? If I was convinced that there was a hell, I would crawl on my hands and knees on broken shards of glass the length and breadth of England just to prevent one soul from going there. Either the Christians don't actually believe, or they have hearts of stone." This man has obviously been around Christians who didn’t get it, because he didn’t feel like the Christians he knew cared if he went to hell or not. He obseved that the christians aroudn him were not trying to tell him about their hope and life they had found, so it must not exist. If thses people truly believed they would share. To not share would mean that they all had hearts of stone. Little stony hearts like the Grinch.

There is a part in the movie the Grinch with Jim Carey when he is going over his list of things to do, on that list right before 5:30 jazzersize and right after 4;30 "staring into the abyss session" is 4:00"Find the answer to world hunger, tell no one." Surely only someone as awful as the Grinch could be that selfish.
I know that as Christians we are guilty of just that. We have the answer to the world's pain and suffering, and we aren't sharing it! You know how disgusting that is? It would be like having the cure for AIDS or swine flu but keeping it for only yourself. If someone found out you could be put in jail, you would be outcast from society and would go down in history as a villain! WE THE SECRET TO LIFE THAT WE MUST NOT KEEP TO OURSELVES!


Your passion alone will show people there is a God.
You see because though going to heaven is a great thing, that's not all of it! What Jesus offers every living soul today is LIFE! True life! A relationship with him! He bled so that we don’t have too! What if all the cutters in your school knew that!? Don’t you think they would be grateful to know that they don’t have to be in pain anymore? Jesus offers healing,

A girl I know in Langley, she's bisexual and doesn’t believe in God. She was injured one day and the xray said she had a cracked vertebra. Very bad. We told her about Jesus and how he has the power to heal. We prayed for her. She got x rayed again the next day and the doctors were baffled because the fracture was completely gone! Now she believes there is a god and is seeking out more about him.

Our God is good! Romans 1:16 "I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, because it is the power of God for Salvation for all who believe!
What IT does
IT compels you to share the good news of Jesus with everyone, and IT makes you bold. I have a few stories to share with you about telling people about the hope of Jesus. One guy, we will call him Jack. Last October jack went to Tim Horton's for his last coffee, planning to kill himself that night. 6 months later he committed his life to Jesus in that exact same Tim Horton's. we've known each other for a few years now, and we have told him about Jesus many times. He is very wary and cautious of religion. This day however he decided that after watching us and our lives and how much we love Jesus, that he wanted in. So I simply introduced him to Jesus. The two of them talked, Jesus showed him how much He loved him and what he had done to sacrifice for him. After this conversation between the two of them, Jack looked up at me with tears pouring down his face and the first thing he said was "Jesus is so much better then you guys described him."

When you take it to your school, you will see miracles happening! People who didn’t have hope find it. Once you see that happen, you will guaranteed become addicted to it! I've seen castle ruins in Scotland, I've watched the waves in Greece, I've watched the sunset in Croatia, I've seen the ice burgs in Alaska, but this, this is the most beautiful thing I've ever seen before.

Romans 1:16 "I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ, because it is the power of God for Salvation for all who believe! Jew and gentile! " I have told people about Jesus a lot and prayed with people many times, and I can tell you this, Jesus always shows up! He always shows himself to people even better then you could ever describe to them! So be confident in the one you represent! Because people are suffering needlessly.

So do you want IT?
Then ask for it! Then go and do IT!
Read your bible like you believe it! Then live like you believe it! Don’t let fear hold you back! Remember that they simply don’t know! Gaze into the face of Jesus and be transformed from the inside out! Ask and you shall receive! Strive to become more like Jesus. Your life will get flipped upside down. You will be shaken, rattled up and poured over! It will be a rollercoaster ride, but God is your anchor. You will know life like how it is meant to be lived! You will have to put down your own ambitions. Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words. Stop using that as an excuse to hide behind! I am here to say IT IS NECESSARY! But you had better be living a life that backs up what you say.
I have a special note to those of you who say you are Christians and stick up for God in a debate in Biology class, but go out and gossip and party and don’t live like Jesus has called you to live… please stop telling people you are a Christian! I am tired of apologizing for your hypocrisy! You are giving the rest of us a bad name. Go and deal with your own issues.

There is a world out there that is crying out for love, go out and show them what love is and who it comes from and how to get it!
Romans 10:14 "But how can they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent?"
Consider this your sending out!
I charge you: Go out and preach that the lost will be found! That the sick may be well! That the hopeless will find hope!

Send out/ prayer for schools:
Let me pray for you
My God seize you with a holy passion drenched in a righteous desperation for the lost.
May compassion from the heart of Jesus take your own heart over completely.
My your eyes reflect the grace in the eyes of the Father.
May you cry alongside of the Holy Spirit, and laugh heartily with Him as well.
May the Spirit guide your every word and thought, that you may give out grace quickly and take offence slowly.
May you completely surrender your pride, and may hypocrisy be flushed out as you come near the thoughts and heart of Jesus.
May Jesus show you his heart, and may that break your own.
May repentance be a lifestyle for you.
May you be a good reflection of Jesus.

May your eternity be blessed with more brothers and sisters.

I told you stories about the power of prayer about the healing of the girl. I believe in the power of prayer more now then ever before! We are taking some time for you to get it and start sharing it! We are going to break up into groups. Around the walls there are signs for the different schools in langley. There is one for the home schooled kids too. Once you get to your sign get in a circle, everybody share their name and their grade, and then start praying. Pray for the lost in your school. Pray from strength for your fellow students. Pray that your lights would shine brightly in your schools that people will find the hope of Jesus!

Monday, September 14, 2009


a text message conversation I had with a teen today

teen "what's up?"

me "I'm just writing thank you notes."

teen "So that's good...?"

me "Its good to know that there are people out there who believe in what i do enough to support it."

teen "That's good...im happy you have supporters cause you make a big difference in peoples lives."

me "can i quote you on that?"

teen "yes."

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

on broken shards of glass

Meet your keynote speaker for "Langley Together". hip-hip-horray...ya cuz nothing thrills me more then getting up in front of a bunch of strangers and trying for an hour not to stick my foot too far in my mouth. I was contacted by a youth pastor who asked me to speak at this event. Its purpose is to inspire the christian youth in Langley to go into their schools and share their faith with their unsaved friends.

the only problem is the fact that I do have allot to say about this subject and am quite passionate about it.... so i had to say yes.

when i was about 13 I heard this quote and it has stuck with me ever since:
"The reason I dont believe in God is because the Christians dont believe in God. How do I know? If I was convinced that there was a hell, I would crawl on my hands and knees on broken shards of glass the length and breadth of England just to prevent one soul from going there. Either the Christians dont actually believe, or they have hearts of stone."

Talk about conviction! So I will be speaking on this subject. I will challenge the teens to examine their lives and ask themselves "If I really believe, then what should I be doing?" I will end the sermon with this send off prayer,

May God seize you with a holy passion drenched in righteous desperation for the lost.
May compassion from the heart of Jesus take over your own heart completely.
May your eyes reflect the grace in the eyes of the Father.
may you cry alongside the Holy Spirit, and laugh with him as well.
May you completely surrender your pride and may all hypocrisy be flushed out as you draw near to the heart and thoughts of Jesus.
may Jesus Show you his heart, and may it break your own.
may repentance be a lifestyle for you.
May you be a good reflection of Jesus.

may your eternity be blessed with many more brothers and sisters.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

I have everything I need

I found this photo on a website called Deviant Art. it's called "I have everything I Need." this struck me and so I wanted to share it with you. Let it serve you as a reminder to be content and to be childlike.


At Carmen's Questions last night we asked the question why? It was very frustrating, let me show you. We started with a basic question and asked why until we didnt have an answer and got to the "bottom" of that question.
why do you smile?
because i'm happy

because life is good
because i have people i love and who love me

why? .... and so on.

here are the bottom questions we were left with at the end of the night:

why does Jesus love me?

why did God create us?

why were we not made perfect and all knowing like God?

why is God the way he is?

why does God have a purpose for me?

why do people have to have power levels?

why do we have souls?

why do most people find it hard to love?

These are the basic, bottom, foundational questions that are deep inside the hearts and minds of these teens. It was really fun to see how their minds work as they answered questions way differently then I would have. We ended the night talking about the last bottom question that was brought up. "why do most people find it hard to love?"
They came to the conclusion that it is harder to love if you are not being loved, and easier if you are.
talk about a motivation for me once again to do the work that I do! My job is to love these teens, so that they may find the joy in loving others as well. Ultimately to love the one who loved them first, their creator.