There was a little girl, who had a little curl

We interrupt this stream of pithy and somewhat vulnerable posts reflecting on Bible week to bring you news of a wee miracle I discovered this morning.

For those of you who don’t know, I have alopecia.  I lose hair in patches, have since I was a little girl.  I was bald in fifth grade.  All of my hair on my head had grown back by high school, but to this day I do not have to shave my legs.  This was an answer to a prayer I prayed when I was only 11.  I told God I was willing to be bald as long as He needed me to be, to accomplish what He wanted to accomplish through it, but I didn’t ever want prickly legs!  My church family also prayed for my healing for years.

I still get small bald patches, usually due to stress, usually around the sides and back of my hairline.  I have had two appear since being in California.  (Oh, stress…)  Months ago one appeared in my hairline along my bangs, and it made me very very sad.  So I asked my church family to pray, and only two days later I thought I saw fuzz (the new hair comes in so soft) in the center of the spot.  That’s quicker than a prednizone injection!

I wasn’t sure, though, and I determined not to worry about it.

A few days ago I was wondering about that bald spot, and this morning I saw a tiny curl, about an inch long, right where the patch had been!  See?

Okay, that picture doesn’t show it so well.

I just thought it was cuter than the one that does.

Maybe this one is better…

Still no?  There was a longer piece with the little miracle curl.

This picture shows the curl best, but my hand was over the flash.   It’s kind of a terrible picture.  Don’t be alarmed or distracted.

I’m so happy!  I feel so loved…by God and by the people who have prayed for me over the years!

Thank you!!!!!!!!

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Waiting

After two of the busiest weeks of the year, followed by another week that did not slow down, I feel like I should update you on the 12 girls who descended upon our base for Discipleship Training School (they’re amazing), about the vision strategy meeting where God placed the same issues on each of our hearts (Community begins at home.  With relationship.  Who knew?), about the teams that will be going to Israel, Ethiopia, and Asia this year…but in the middle of rehashing all the details of an update, I realize that if I am bored writing it, my readers will be bored reading it.  And I do not want to bore anyone.  So…that’s your update (for now)…

12 girls for the DTS = amazing

Community begins at home, and we’re working on that this year.  Again.  😉

Israel, Ethiopia, Asia, and who knows where else.

As for me and my heart…

…I have come to the conclusion that I am learning to wait on the Lord.  A week and a half ago I got to teach a little girl to dance in the Spirit…which was basically teaching her how to wait and let Him take the lead.

Yesterday I got to play my violin in worship.  Twice.  Both times I got feedback on how incredible it was…actually, people have been saying that a lot recently…how my skills are really improving and what not.  I’m thinking to myself, “What I am doing right now is waaaaaay less technical than what I was doing when I picked it back up months ago.”

What I am doing differently…is waiting.  Sometimes on a single note.  F#.  F# again.  Still playing F#.  Suddenly a run comes out of nowhere (that’s like a lick, for those of you who specialize in more fretted stringed instruments.)  Sometimes I wait without playing…or without the violin in my hands at all.  I don’t “hear” the part, so I don’t play…and I realize that it works best with what everyone else is doing.

Not that learning to listen in ensemble is anything new to me.  Not that learning to wait is anything new, either.  Just seems to be where I am right now.  And I am feeling incredibly impatient…like standing there with my violin in my hands, thinking, “Why don’t I have anything to play? [pause pause pause] Ooooooooooh…because I’m not supposed to play right now.”  Then I set down the violin and a moment later realize it’s almost my cue.  I haven’t played some of these songs in months, and last time I played it differently.  How, then, do I know it’s almost my cue?  Must be Jesus.  I pick up the violin and play a scale and the whole room erupts into movement and color and life.

I remember when I started learning to dance with God.  I would wait, with my hands open, and breathe.  Just breathe.  And wait.  Pretty soon my arms would know which way to move and my feet would follow the gentle motion.  Learning to wait while playing in a band with a bunch of rock-n-roll worshipers is a bit more…raucous…to say the least.  Not all worshipers are rock-n-roll, but these guys are!  Learning ensemble with them may just be a miracle for this often soft spoken ballerina, and I’m loving it.

Incarnation

Something about the light in Kansas City makes me want to write, and I am finding after two weeks that I have more to say than time to say it in.  The 2,000 mile treck home to California has only confounded the matter.  So rather than revisiting all the stirring thoughts of the last three weeks, I want to start here, now, with Christmas and the wonder of the Incarnation.

Incarnation…from the Latin word carnis meaning flesh, from which we get words like “carnitas” (mmmm…chili con carne) and “carnal”.  In + caro means God puts on skin and becomes a man.  The Gospel of John puts it this way, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us…”

Wait a minute…this is GOD.  The tabernacle and the sacrificial system of the Old Testament were created so that He could travel with the Israelites in the wilderness and not KILL them with His holiness.  God, for whom we have a glaring lack of ability to comprehend, even in poetic images: the bush that burns and is not consumed, the fire by day, cloud by night, deep darkness, everlasting light.  Angels…gargantuan creatures of epic ferocity, fly around Him, covering their eyes and feet and crying out “Holy!  Holy!  Holy!”  This is GOD.

And He became flesh.

He put on skin.  He became frail.  He submitted Himself to imperfect parents, siblings, teachers, friends.  He dwelt among us.

He put on skin so that He could know us in our frailty.

He put on skin so that He could change what it means to wear skin.

Healing in India

Well, I could begin this post by telling you how the first thing I will do when near a bathtub in the states is take a good long bath, or how the water coming off my hair the other day was nearly black…and they say that this is relatively clean air for Kolkata. OR I could tell you about evangelism time today and how we saw SIX PEOPLE PRAY TO ACCEPT JESUS and 15 people or more HEALED on a street corner.

It began with interview-style evangelism, where we took a video camera with us and interviewed some flight attendant students about places to eat in Kolkata and the purpose of life. There were three of us in the group…me, Cody, and Kelsy. Cody shared the gospel with them and they said they had never heard such a thing, then were eager to pray with us. We arranged to meet them for church this Sunday, and ran into them in the street later, where they gave us mangoes and salt, may my bowels rest in peace tonight.

We kept walking and found a “blind” beggar on the street. Cody began to pray for him, for healing, and within seconds a crowd was gathered. I looked at him, thinking this could end well or it could end very very badly, “This should be fun.” He grinned and proclaimed that it is fun, which was pretty much my cue to jump in. I was praying for the beggar as Cody began explaining what he was doing. No one spoke English, so he prayed for a translator, and in short order a young Christian student happed by and thought we might need some help, so he started translating. Woooooooo!!!

I felt things get a little harried and my attention was drawn to the shrine only a few feet away. Just as Cody was getting to the resurrection power of Jesus, he was interrupted. I began praying against death and praying in tongues, and the man clears out and Cody goes on. As he put it:

At the end of my message, I hear come out of my mouth, “I want anyone who is sick to come forward, I will lay hands on you, and when you are healed you will know Jesus is real.” This surprised me, I was not planning on saying that. And what happened next I will never forget.

He starts praying for a man’s arthritic knee as I’m remembering that God promised to put His power behind the words of His saints, for His name’s sake. I’m remembering and praying for the man and against doubt and against death and against pain and disease, bringing the Kingdom of God and all this in the name of Jesus. Cody prayed for the man four times…the second time he had some relief, but the pain persisted, and the fourth time it began to recede. Three more people came forward for healing, and I continued praying for the beggar. I finally felt a sense of peace that he had had healing, and although I could not communicate with him very well, I saw his countenance change before my eyes, and just as I thought, “It’s done. He can go now,” he got up and left.

I wanted to pray, so Cody sent over a man with a headache. Hurrah! I have prayed for many headaches since this trip began, with great success. It’s an area that I want authority over and so have been pressing in for that. I had Kelsy join me so that I would not be praying for the men one on one. We prayed for his headache several times, and it was when I touched the spot lightly and prayed that the pain was healed.

There was only one woman in the crowd, and I smiled at her. She returned shortly with her camera crew! That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, the Indian paparazzi. I’m cracking up, they’re videoing us, Cody gave them an interview and Kelsy told them that “Jesus loves me this I know for the Bible told me so.”

We were walking away…very slowly as people continued to want prayer…and honestly, it broke my heart to send them away…and some people warned us to be careful…and the police started running after us…which was a little threatening. They told us to wait as another police man and a guard came over to us. Kelsy and I looked at each other sideways. They wanted healing! We prayed for all three of them, for their backs. Wowza! What a night.

We then went out for dinner with the team to Mouline Rouge, which is a knockoff from the movie or the place in Paris, or both, but it made me smile because it’s my favorite movie.

Glory be to Jesus! This is amazing stuff…God really is powerful…and amazing! I’m so excited to see more!