Archive - August 2015

Was Sunday Real? or Was It Just Emotion?
PART TWO: What about the Mommies?
What About the Mommies???
Generations of Love

Was Sunday Real? or Was It Just Emotion?

Ok…….let’s be real with each other. It is the middle of the week after a Sunday in which the Lord really moved in my heart and in many other’s hearts. I dealt with some personal sin in my own life. I prayed and called out for the Lord on behalf of my family, my church, my friends, our nation, and our world as Preacher led us. I sang at the top of my lungs………”There is Power in the Name of Jesus to break every chain.”   P I fell on my knees in brokenness and stood up to walk in His freedom, joy, and forgiveness.

But now it is the middle of the week and some of those chains are rattling in front of me. I see them and I hear them. The enemy is taunting me and the feeling is fading. So what do I do???

Preacher said, “Revival is renewed passion to know Christ, love Christ, share Christ and serve Christ!”  So I decided to………

  • Run to the Word!  The best way to know Christ is to be in His word. To read it, study it, memorize it. There is no shortcut on this. If you don’t choose to run to His word, well you might as well just quit reading this blog right now.  So I ran to His word and the Lord began to teach me even more about Revival and how to sustain it in my own life. Here are some practical things that the Lord said to me through thru the following verse:

The Lord God is my strength, and he will make my feet like hinds’ feet, and he will make me to walk upon my high places.  To the chief singer on my stringed instruments.”  Habakkuk 3:19                           

  • Make sure He is my Master. The word “God” in Habakkuk 3:19 is “Adonai” which means “Master”.   Unless He is my Master in every area of life…..meaning I choose to obey Him every time He speaks to me ……..He will not be my strength. When I was a little child, I was told that when God speaks to you that you should take the first step in obedience and then His strength will carry you through. I know this is truth for every directive He has ever given me………from choosing to hold my tongue to moving across the country to serve Him in a new ministry. The first step is my obedience, and then His power enables me!


  • Acknowledge my high places and REPENT!  High places aren’t fun, pretty places. In the Old Testament “high places” referred to where people sacrificed to idols. Many times people sacrificed their own children on high places. High places are strongholds of sin in my life. A stronghold is the area of your life that the enemy has a grip on; an area that the enemy can count on your response. It can be an addiction to food, alcohol, drugs, approval, gossip, anger, greed, shopping, pride, laziness, self-centeredness and the list goes on and on. God’s power can’t enable you to walk on your high places unless you are willing to acknowledge you have them. If I excuse my “sin” because of anything or anyone, then the chains can’t be broken. One can’t repent and turn from sin unless, one acknowledges and agrees with God that it is sin.


  • Have the feet of a doe! Yep, that’s what the Lord said. Hind’s feet are the feet of a female deer. I believe God specifically used “hind’s feet” for a reason. The feet of a male and female deer are different!   As I researched this some experts say that a doe can go higher than a buck because they are more agile and because their feet are different.   One study said that doe’s nails are longer so they can grip the rocks better and therefore are more agile in rocky environmentsThe Lord doesn’t want strongholds in our lives to pulls us down or weigh us down.   He wants to give us hind’s feet to move powerfully and effectively through them.


  • Worship! Habakkuk, the prophet, began chapter 3 with a musical term “shigionoth”…… a musical term that meant to sing with delirious joy.  The prophet closes chapter 3 by reminding us about worship.   Worship when the chains are rattling! Worship means to declare God’s worth. Fill your heart, your mind, your life with music which glorifies Him.  Speak words of His worth!   The moment I begin to sing His praise, the noise of the rattling chains disappears.


  • And finally Serve others and Share Christ…..Revival is only revival as Preacher says when it leaves the church building. So this week when I began to “lose the feeling” I asked the Lord to put others in my path that I could serve and share Christ’s love with. After having several opportunities to just love on others, God begin to fill me with His joy.

So up on Rocky Top I have seen a lot of deer. I haven’t been quick enough to snap a picture of one.

But a dear friend of mine has! She actually took the above picture of a doe on my high place…..yep right outside my window. See that precious doe peeking up over the rocky top!  When she sent me this picture I had so much joy in my heart. Thank you Lord that you will send Your power into my life to walk right through any stronghold/high place in my life if I will just run to your Word, acknowledge you as my master, worship you and then love and serve others!!!

Sunday was REAL!   “There’s an army rising up……to break every chain, break every chain.”

PART TWO: What about the Mommies?


Most women, including myself, carry around HELP WANTED signs when it comes to our hearts. Some carry scars from an abortion, others from a divorce, death of a child, addiction, suicide of a loved one, financial difficulties, loneliness or just the stress of everyday life.

How as women can we help each other with our wounded hearts? Below are some practical ways we can help one another.

    1. BE REAL!!   Let’s be real and honest with each other. Quit playing games and hiding behind masks of perfectionism. If you are alive, you have a wound of some kind. Let’s not flaunt our wounds but let’s talk! Many times our wounds and what Christ has done in our lives to heal us of those wounds are the very stories that will lead another woman to Christ or help her heal!Remember what Kristi shared last week, what you hide in the dark can’t be healed by the light of Christ.
    2. BE CONFIDENTIAL!   When a woman dares to be honest and vulnerable with you, keep her story confidential!!! It is her story. Don’t even share with someone else as a prayer request!
    3. DON’T BE SHOCKED! Also, when a woman opens up to you, keep the shocked look to a minimum! It takes a lot of courage and bravery for most women to open up and share about their wounds.
    4. BELIEVE THERE ARE NO COICIDENCES!   A few days after Kristi Nolan sat on my back porch years ago and told me her story, I found a young woman crying in church. She had an abortion and was struggling with guilt and shame. I called Kristi and asked her “Are you ready to share your story to help another?” Kristi was ready!!!  Kristi and that young woman were connected quickly. AGAIN……NEVER SHARE SOMEONES STORY FOR THEM!   But do know God uses our wounds to help others heal.
    5. BE PROACTIVE!!   Be a part of the solution in your local body of Christ. Volunteer to offer support groups for wounded women. When support groups are offered make sure it is done with the utmost of confidentiality….probably not best to locate “Surrendering the Secret” (a bible study for women who have had abortions) on the same hallway as the other bible studies your church offers.
    6. HAVE A FILTER! When you are hanging out in a large group of women and the topic goes to something like Planned Parenthood do not throw around terms like “baby killers”. Most likely if you are in a group of 8-10 women, one or two of them have had an abortion or someone they love has had one.
    7. BE LOVE!   And finally, just love women with the love of Christ. Every woman has a story. Every woman has a past. Every woman needs Jesus. I believe there are no accidents in my day. God brings women into my path all the time that I know just need a hug, need someone to listen to them, need someone to encourage them. Be love to those around you!!! BE JESUS!

Blessed by the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. II Corinthians 1:3-4

Thanks for sitting on the back porch with me Kristi Nolan!

What About the Mommies???

Welcome to the back porch at Rocky Top, Kristi Nolan! Kristi is a dear friend of mine, passionate follower of Christ, faithful wife of 18 years, and mom of 3 precious children! Today Kristi challenges us to think through a subject that not many of us want to talk about. Yet, Kristi has lived through this nightmare and has come out victoriously because of who her God is………Faithful, filled with grace, mercy and love!

You can’t turn on the TV or get on any type of social media right now without seeing the news of Planned Parenthood and the stomach-turning revelations of what they are doing with body parts of innocent children. The Pro-Choice/Pro-life debate and the statistics for these aborted babies are being bounced through our airwaves like ping pong balls.

Yet, there is a statistic that we don’t like to talk about………Many statistics reveal that almost one in four women have had or will have an abortion in the United States. So take a minute and look around your Bible study group or just look down your pew at church, most likely at least one woman has had an abortion.

They have walked into a clinic with a womb filled with life and walked out empty. Some of these moms pretend it isn’t life so therefore it isn’t a big deal. Yet, there is the mom who hides in shame for fear of what others would think if someone discovered her choice of abortion.   There are moms who are riddled with guilt and stricken with fear and end up suffering from addictions, anxiety, depression and even suicide because of One Choice they made on One Day in their life.

For my friends sitting in my Bible study group or for those who sit on the church pew with me……….

I am that mom; I am that woman.

I was old enough to know better. I was raised in church. My daddy was a deacon. My parents were leaders in the youth group. I had stars beside my name on the attendance chart in Sunday School. At the age of 24, I became the one in four!

Realization hit me while I was on the table. Guilt and shame consumed me the moment I got back into the car. The enemy began a successful assault on my heart and mind. He convinced me that God’s grace didn’t go that far. He convinced me that I didn’t deserve children so God would never give me anymore. Once God proved him wrong, he tried to convince me God’s plan was to give them to me just so he could take them from me as a punishment. More than anything, he convinced me that it was better to keep it a secret. Anything the enemy convinces you to hide, well…….it stays hidden from the healing light of Jesus. Unfortunately, many times the Church helps him in that campaign.

Yes, abortion is murder, BUT calling women murderers doesn’t fill us with godly sorrow, it fills us with shame. My God…….He is not about shame. He is about repentance, restoration and redemption. Please do not think I am proud of my story. I am not. Every time I think how far the Lord has brought me, I am filled with awe and humility. I have no pride in my sin. I have confidence in the testimony of what the Lord has done and is doing in my life.

So what about the mommies? Being pro-life is not just about saving the lives of millions of innocent babies but it is also about advocating for the lives of mommies to not live in guilt, shame, addiction, and depression. As a follower of Christ, we also need to offer women who have had abortions the love and compassion of Christ.

My prayer is that by sharing my story I will not only save innocent lives from being taken but would also save any woman from walking through life in shame or fear of being found out. It is my prayer that the Body of Christ would be a place of love and healing for moms like me.

He has not dealt with us as our sins deserve or repaid us according to our offenses. Psalm 103:10

**Next week: Part 2: What Can We do to Minister to a Wounded Mommy?

Generations of Love

I’m sitting on the back porch today at Rocky Top contemplating the last 35 years! Whoa…that is a long time! Yet, that is the number of years I have been married to Preacher.

Remembering our first date at Wendy’s and a movie, this blonde haired, blue eyed guy caught my heart!

After sitting on a swing at Baylor University for several hours talking, I knew he was “The One”! I ran upstairs to my dorm room and proudly announced to my roommate, “I’m going to marry, John Avant.”

And two years later, we walked down the aisle of Miller Chapel at Baylor and pledged our lives to one another and began a wild adventure.

During those 35 years we have lived in four states, eleven apartments/houses, served seven churches and one denominational mission agency, been on mission together in 7 countries, raised 3 children who are now all married, and have two adorable grandchildren. Wow……I’m tired.

We have also in those 35 years experienced death of parents, a grandchild and dear friends; experienced sickness and surgeries; and there were times that we might have called our marriage quits if not for the fact Preacher would lose his job if our marriage failed. Does that shock you?? It shouldn’t!

A good marriage is hard work! BUT a good marriage is full of joy and fun!

It is fun to dance with my husband knowing he has chosen me over and over! It was a blast to dance at each of my children’s weddings with the man who helped me bring them into this world and helped to parent them. And it is a joy to watch my husband throw his grandchildren up into the air as they laugh and squeal with delight.

But I do have regrets and there are things that I want to grow in as a wife to this blonde haired, blue eyed guy who I truly adore…even after 35 years.

If we don’t grow, we regress and eventually love grows cold.

So in celebrating 35 years of marriage I want to leave you with some wisdom from some women who have been married longer or almost as long as I have.……..collectively this wisdom comes from almost 150 years of marriage being represented!  Here are some great ways to grow in your marriage!

  1. Love Jesus first…..He is the only one who can truly meet all your needs!
  2. Show affection to your man and have lots of sex!…….Get over your body image…he chose you and thinks you are beautiful. But do choose to take care of yourself…he wants you around!
  3. Keep dating…….choose to have time alone each week without kids!
  4. Go on adventures together…..experience new things together.
  5. Keep communication lines open…… it out!
  6. Never forget the bigger picture…working on your marriage is about creating……..GENERATIONS OF LOVE……..and that will ultimately change the world!

Copyright © 2015. Website design by Girl on the Roof.