The David Crowder Band's New Video "Shine" (a great piece of brave)

One of my favorite things to use as a piece of brave is music. There are tons of song lyrics out there that remind me how big God is and that he already has everything under control.  Sometimes I play the music to get pumped up before I have to do something scary, like Rocky did when he was getting ready for the big fight.  I can hear the theme song now.......

The David Crowder Band is one of my all time favorite worship bands.  I love David's voice and the style of the music.  Their songs have been a source of strength for me during hard times.   I got to go hear David at his church in Waco this summer.  It was amazing.  The church is geared towards college students. Since it was summertime, only a few people were there.  I secretly pretended I was at my own private concert.

Besides an amazing time worshiping God, the best part of visiting the church was seeing how humble and real David is.  He held open the doors, greeted people and hung out drinking coffee just like everyone else.  When it was time for him to lead the music, he and the band played as if they were playing a concert for thousands.  It didn't matter that only a handful of us were in the audience.  The Band just wanted to honor God with their best. I don't know about you, but it feels good to know that David is the real deal.  Just a regular ole' person.

The David Crowder Band has just released this video.  I LOVE it.  I know you will too.

I chose to post it on my blog because it's a great example of using a "piece of brave".  Did you notice how the couple used a flower as a symbol throughout their lives? The words are incredible too. The band and people from the church made all the light bright scenes themselves. I love that David leaned on his church family for help.  So great. Did I mention I LOVE this video?



I Admit it, I Stole From My Kids

 Getting ready for the first day of school is hectic for our family. My four children and I usually scurry around town like squirrels, anxiously gathering everything we need. This year was different. My husband’s lack of a job, meant we didn’t have money for school supplies.

Since shopping wasn’t an option, I decided to prepare for our first day, by registering the kids early, so the paperwork wouldn’t delay us the next morning. We drove to the school, met the teachers, and checked out the classrooms. The secretary seemed kind, so I hid my embarrassment, gathered my courage, and asked her if there was anything left from the fill-a-book-bag-for-needy-child program. She told me it was doubtful, but she would give us whatever she could find.

That night, I gathered the few supplies we already had and tried to sleep. Even though I prayed and asked God to provide for us, I tossed and turned, trying to come up with a solution. It made me sad to think of my kids missing out on the sharp points of new crayons and the chance to enjoy the new plastic smell of a back pack before it’s filled with sweaty gym clothes. I could still see the fear on my kids’ faces when they told me they were worried everyone would know they were “poor”.

This arrangement was too much for my motherly instincts to allow, so I took matters into my own hands. I drove to a 24-hour superstore and bought their 4 cheapest backpacks. I couldn’t buy anything to put in them, but at least it was a start.

That morning, I heroically swooped into each child's room and surprised them with a backpack. Their smiles said it all. When we got to school, the secretary was wearing a huge smile too. I saw tears in her eyes, as she told me the staff had gotten together and dug up backpacks and supplies for each one of my children. God had provided.The kids were ecstatic. I was relived.

Oddly, on the drive back home, I didn’t feel like smiling. Instead, I felt guilty. I wondered if the secretary was disappointed when she saw my kids already had backpacks. I realized what I had done. I had allowed fear and anxiety to seep into my life again. Playing the hero by buying backpacks had stolen a huge blessing from my kids. I had robbed them of a lesson on trust. I had also stolen the joy of giving from the secretary.

If I hadn’t stepped in, my kids would have experienced a direct answer to prayer. They would have understood how much their teachers cared for them. Most of all they would have known they could put their trust in God, instead of me.

Humble yourselves, therefore, under God's mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.
1 Peter 5:6-7 (NIV)

God is good, so even though I messed things up for my kids, and their teachers, He allowed me to learn an important lesson. From now on, I will try to let go of my pride and let God do things His way.  I will trust Him to meet our needs.

Lord, open my eyes to see when you are at work. Help me resist taking matters in my own hands. Instead, allow me to humble myself and trust you completely. In Jesus name, Amen.



Family Night Out with a Human Trafficking Gang and a State Trooper UPDATE

     Children are amazing creatures aren't they?  Kaylee, my 11 year old daughter, showed me her journal entry about our stolen truck ordeal.  Her perspective on that crazy night left me speechless.  I wanted to turn it into a devotion, so she gave me permission to share it with you.

     Incredible.  She wasn't scared.  She wasn't worried. She didn't see any reason that she needed to be. The stolen truck was a side note in her mind.  She focused in on a "little thing".
     Despite being one of four wiggly kids, squeezed into three seats, for over an hour, she chose to treasure the memory of her irritating little brother falling asleep on her shoulder.

Thank you Kaylee for reminding me what is important.

4Whoever will humble himself therefore and become like this little child [trusting, lowly, loving, forgiving] is greatest in the kingdom of heaven.    Matthew 18:4

Lord, forgive me for being too distracted with worry to see your blessings.  I must have missed out on thousands of them over the years.  Thank you for allowing me to see your world through a child's eyes.  Please help me hold on to that kind of faith and innocence. Amen


Family Night Out with a Human Trafficking Gang and a State Trooper

     Life is always exciting when you hang out with the Clancy's.  My parents learned that lesson the hard way Friday night.

     We love dollar shows.It usually costs our family $52 to see a movie.  If we get crazy and add popcorn and drinks, it can run us a much a $75.  So, you can imagine my excitement when I  recently discovered a dollar theater outside of Austin.  This past Friday seemed like a great night to try it out, so we invited my parents to come along.
     Since we were going to save so much money on the movie, we decided to go out to eat a local Mexican restaurant before the show.  The food was great.  We took our time, savoring each nacho and every last drop of free ice cream. 
     When we finished, my parents and daughters headed for my Dad's truck and the rest of us piled into our Odyssey.  As we backed out, we noticed my parents standing awkwardly in the parking lot and the girls  looking around as if they had forgotten where they parked. We pulled the van over next to them and realized the problem wasn't that the parking spot had been forgotten,  it was that the truck was just flat gone.

     I have never had a car stolen. To me, that is something happens to people on T.V., not to a random, country family like ours. It felt strange.  Why us?  Why our truck?  It wasn't even new or fancy.  Just a quality, useful truck for my cowboy Dad. The only distinguishing feature on it was a American Paint Horse Association sticker on the back window.  So weird.
     Of course, we immediately called the police.  My kids were super excited to hang out with a state trooper. Who needs a movie when real life is just as interesting? There wasn't much the trooper could do for us at the time, except file a report. So, we squeezed in the the van and went on our way, feeling a little creeped out.
     Amazingly, the next morning, my dad got a phone call saying his truck had been found.  I personally thought we would never see it again.  Apparently, a seasoned, professional human trafficking gang had stolen the truck, driven it all the way to Mexico, brought immigrants over the border, then abandoned the truck near Laredo, TX., after a high speed chase.   We were told that the gang was probably sitting there waiting for us (or someone just like us) when we pulled up.  Chances are, we saw them and didn't even know it.
     The truck itself is trashed.  The border patrol said the back seat had been ripped out (a typical thing that happens) and the truck had been driven hard and far across open country.  The front is wrecked and scratched from barbed wire and brush.  The suspension and anything else under the truck is shot. The insurance will more than likely total it out.
     Some family night together!  Our savings at the dollar show turned into a $20,000 deficit. I have to confess, I don't have a profound spiritual thought for this story. I just wanted to share it with you. I don't know why this happened to us, especially with everything else that is going on in our lives right now. There was a time when I would have spent a lot of brain power trying to make this event make sense, but in this case, I think we were just in the wrong place at the wrong time. We wern't special, it could have happend to anyone.
    There is one thing I do know, God can and will use all things for good for those that love Him. It will be interesting to see how this all plays out.
I will keep you posted!



Yellow Jackets, Wasps, and Hornets, Oh My!!!!

     If you have read my bio, you know that my family and I are currently living in my parents tiny, old, farmhouse, which is completely surrounded by cornfields and cows.  It is beautiful and quiet, like a scene from a gas station postcard.
     I am thankful to have a place to stay, but living in the middle of nowhere has its downfalls.  See, although I am a Texas girl, I am not a country girl.  There are  many more things I don't like about the country than I do specifically, bugs.  I hate, hate, hate, bugs.  Especially, ones that have nests and stingers. There are tons of them here.
Yellow jackets, wasps and hornets  Oh My!
    A few days ago, I was summoned to battle my flying foes.  My children were in dire need of their pool toys, which we store in a garage type building, behind the house. (yes it's October, and we are still swimming)
    Unaware, of the danger that lay ahead, I opened the door and stepped inside.  Instantly, I was attacked by dozens of wasps.  They dive bombed my shirt and swarmed  my face. I quickly stepped backwards and slammed the door. Thankfully I was able to escape without injury.
     Obviously, I couldn't let these nasty little creatures hold our pool toys hostage.  This meant war.  I had to rescue those toys or get stung trying!
     I needed protection and weapons.  I found the OFF, and doused every inch of my skin in it . Then, after digging through my weapons cabinet, ( the underside of my kitchen sink)  I armed myself with  long range wasp spray.    
     This time I gently sneaked open the door, stepped inside and began shooting (spraying) my way over to the floaties.  My spray can wasn't enough.  I could only shoot one wasp at at time. I was forced to retreat. I needed something more like a machine gun.... no more like a bomb!
     As entertaining as it was watching mom battle her fear of wasps, my four kids were loosing their patience, they were ready to swim.  So, I grabbed a bug bomb and a bandanna for a mask. 
     Protected, armed, and looking a little like a crazed bandit, I opened the door again. I pulled the pin on the grenade (pushed the plastic button on the can) and hurled it across the garage. I waited five minutes, for the smoke to clear and marched inside. 
    Ah Ha!! Victory was mine!  No wasps in sight! I grabbed our beloved noodles, goggles, and kick boards and dashed out the door.
     My family danced and cheered!  My son even awarded me with a kiss for my bravery!
Okay so whats the point of this silly story?
     First, I just needed to brag about  facing my fear of wasps.  Oh the things we do for our kids......
     Second, all the battling reminded me that God gives us weapons to fight with.  We don't have to be afraid to forge through tough circumstances, face our fears, or stand up for what is right.  God always with us and He gave us a cabinet full of weapons with instructions how to use them. How great is that?

Lord, thanks for taking care of us and giving us the tools to fight against evil. May God guard, guide, and direct you us as we battle our fears.  In Jesus' name, Amen

The Armor of God
Ephesians 6:10-18 (NIV)

 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, ... Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.

Blessings my sweet friends and family!