Thursday, April 21, 2011

10 Yrs of Ministry means 10 Yrs of Memories #10 Christmas Lights

Now this isn't particularly funny to others, but one of my favorite memories.

We have the G-R-E-A-T-E-S-T Staff at our church and have tons of funny, blessed memories over the time we've been here. 

We go to our District Ministers' Christmas Dinner each year, and one particular year we trecked out to East Texas for the evening.  It was comical at every turn, and the big finale was our drive-thru Christmas Light trip.  We pulled off the highway and were awed and inspired by millions of twinkling lights. It turned out to be pretty cheesy, a little hillbilly and we laughed the whole time.  Now each year, someone brings up the Christmas Light drive and we burst into laughter. 

My Friend Missy

I have a dear friend, Missy, who is going through preparations for a liver transplant.  Her husband is blogging about their journey, and this post is especially frank, insightful and inspirational all at the same time.  I thought I'd post the link here .

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

10 Yrs of Ministry Means 10 Yrs of Memories #9 Silas Praying

As I mentioned briefly in the previous post, prayer has been a huge part of what we do in Children's Ministry at our church.  One of my favorite stories is of Silas, who at the time was 5 years old.  We had passed out hearts to adults in the church on the first Sunday in February and asked them to write a prayer request on them.  Then each time we came to church during the month, the children would divide them up and pray for the requests.

Silas needed help reading the adult writing on the prayer hearts, so I had Kaylyn, a teenager sit with him and tell him what to pray.  She read the request to him and he'd close his eyes, pray, and then when he was finished he'd let her know.  He didn't rush through the prayers, and was very intent on praying over each reqeust.  It was so powerful.  When he got thorugh his stack of 6 or so prayers, he came to me and got more hearts, went back and sat in Kaylyn's lap once again and together they prayed through the stack of prayer hearts. 

Kaylyn had tears in her eyes, and I a huge lump in my throat as we experienced this precious time of prayer with Silas.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

10 Yrs of Ministry Means 10 Yrs of Memories #8 Laughing with Kids

I love laughing with kids.  One of my favorite laughter memories is this one:  My ministry at DFC has been focused on prayer for the last 2 years.  It's been the most rewarding time I've had in ministry. 

In the beginning stages, I told the kids my own story of my "new name" and the incredible experience at a prayer conference.  I told them he could give them a new name too, and one of the little boys to me really quietly and said, "Ms. Mary, God gave me a new name too."  The boy told me about praying and hearing God speak to him.  He went on to say, "He gave Conner a new name too."  I said, "Really?  What is it?"  In all seriousness he looked up and said, "Wiggles-like-a-monkey."

It was really funny.  We had a laugh together.  One of my favorite things is making them laugh, or the kids working to make me laugh.  You gain immediate access into their hearts and minds, and draws teacher and student together in the most unique way.  It puts you on the same level for an instant.  It's just the best!

Monday, April 18, 2011

10 Yrs of Ministry Means 10 Yrs of Memories #7 Hot Air Balloon

I've had the fun/nerve-wracking/stressful/gratifying job of directing camps for our district children for several years.

One of the fun memories of that first year was the hot air balloon that we had for the kids to go up in.

They LOVED it!  I LOVED seeing them smile!

Friday, April 15, 2011

10 Yrs of Ministry Means 10 Yrs of Memories #6 Landry's Baptism

When Landry was 10 he was Baptized.  It was a special time for our family of course.  The baptistry in our church is located at the back of the platform with kind of a wall to hide the stairs up to it.  I stayed back behind the wall to help him, but ended up with the best view ever.  I got a great pic (which is filed somewhere and I can't locate it.)  My hubs Keith read Landry's testimony that he prepared, it was just a very special time. 

Then, as Landry got out of the baptistry and was preparing to walk back down the stairs, he hit his head on the nail on the cross that was leaning up against the wall.  Ouch!  Poor little guy!  Baptism took on a whole new meaning for a few hours as the pain in his head stung and hurt!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

10 Yrs of Ministry Means 10 Yrs of Memories #5 The $80 Pie

One year at the Youth Auction my son, Landry and I had a tiny miscommunication about when he was supposed to STOP bidding for a pie, and we ended up paying $80 for the pie.  It was the best pie I've ever tasted!

But it was for a good cause! And we love coconut cream pie. So I'd say it was a win-win!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

10 Yrs of Ministry Means 10 Yrs of Memories #4 Mice in the Shak

The Youth House at our church is called The Shak.  To give you an idea of what it looks's somewhere between this:

and this:

It's a cool house.  Not quite as big as in the photo above, and one-story.  Over the years much of the work and remodeling and upkeep has been done by the youth themselves.  They have a real sense of ownership of the Shak, and if you ask any of them questions about it, they always say, "What happens in the Shak stays in the Shak."  It's cool that it's a safe place.

There are little varments in the Shak from time to time though.  When the kids graduate out of the children's department and go to the Shak, we have a cool event called, "The Crossing."  We've done this for 3 or 4 years now.  We actually go to a bridge in town, and the kids cross the bridge with the teens and youth leaders on the other side cheering them on and welcoming them to the youth group.  It has become one of my favorite things we do.

Before they cross over, I talk to them, and present them with a cross.  So I was in the middle of the serious words of wisdom that would carry one student through adolescence when she interrupts me, and says, 'Ms. Mary, are there really mice in the Shak?"  How funny.  That's all she was worried about!  I had to be honest with her and say, "yes sweetie, there are mice in the Shak."  Humbling.  Funny.  Helped me to remember to not be so full of my words, that I don't see real concerns.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

10 Yrs of Ministry Means 10 Yrs of Memories #3 Stuck in the Elevator

One time our pastor's wife, Monda, got stuck in the elevator.  Monda is always very dignified and for some reason on this particular day, the elevator quit working with her inside it.  She had to yell until came to help.  But I'm sure she yelled in a very dignified manner.  But of course!

Monday, April 11, 2011

10 Yrs of Ministry Means 10 Yrs of Memories #2 The White Squirrel

Our youth pastor at DFC has been there a little longer than we have.  I quickly learned that he is always full of fun, and loves to play jokes on people.  It wasn't long before I heard him talking about the white squirrel.  At first I thought he was making it up, but I saw the white squirrel for myself one day.  It lived in the trees out in the yard of the church.  It was fun to see it running through the yard every once in awhile.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

10 Yrs of Ministry Means 10 Yrs of Memories #1 10K Eggs

This weekend at our church they are celebrating our 10th Anniversary.  I've known about this for awhile even thought it was supposed to be a secret.  That's a whole nuther story.  (is nuther a word?)  Since I've known for awhile, I've had time to think about what 10 years means, and remember some of my favorite memories.  (Also, strategically placed questions have been asked by friends for the past few weeks.)

So I thought I'd share 10 ministry memories with you for the next few posts.  (Here's to consistent blogging and getting that post count up!)

#1 The Time we had 10,000 Eggs at our Easter Egg Hunt

This was in the first year I was here.  We really had 10 THOUSAND eggs at our egg hunt.  We kept getting more and more eggs donated, and I went through a few days of having panic attacks of not having enough eggs, and Wal-Mart had their eggs for $.10 a dozen, so I loaded up, so there you have it.  I found out the next week that the White House only had 8 thousand eggs at their egg hunt!  We got a big kick out of that!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

No Bake Cookies

I made No Bake Cookies tonight. Yum. Haven't had them in f-o-r-e-v-e-r!  As I was stirring (and stirring, sigh) the chocolate, I thought about No Bake Cookies and came up with lots of flashes in my memory banks.

My friend's mom made them all the time. I loved going to her house because she had a kitchen center. Ironic that I liked to play in the kitchen as a little girl. Not so much now!

They had these in the school cafeteria when I was in junior high. You could buy 2 in a sandwich bag (you know the wanna-be ziploc bag) for .25 cents. What would Jamie Oliver have thought of my junior high cafeteria? Scary!

In college we made them all the time. We knew just how the chocolate was supposed to look when it was ready. If it doesn't cook long enough, it doesn't get hard.

Sometime after college we quite making these yummy treats. For the past week I've thought about them every day and couldn't resist the craving any longer! So tonight, I stirred and stirred, and watched for that moment when the chocolate changes ever so slightly, and wah-la, the yumminess begins!