Monday, January 20, 2014

Crystal Sparks!!!

Mama Chiks Meeting 
January 10, 2014

crystal sparks
I tweeted Crystal earlier in the week that I could not physically write her name without "!!!" behind it, as in -->"Crystal Sparks!!!"<-- because I think she is one of the most dynamic and influential speakers I have ever heard, and her messages change my life.  I am honored to call her friend, and that she takes the time out of her insanely busy schedule to speak to our group, each year.
So, I got a phone call from Crystal at about 8:30am; she was frantic and apologetic, "I'm so sorry, Cindy.  We are so stuck in traffic.  I heard there was a back-up on I30, so I left extra early, and I'm trying; it's just not moving.  I promise I left extra early this morning!  I'm trying!"
To which I replied, "it's okay.  It's not  your fault.  Just get here when you can.  We'll wait."  Then, I texted her, "Be anxious for nothing, but in all things, with prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving; make your requests be known to God.  And the peace that surpasses all understanding will guard your heart and mind, in Christ Jesus. Amen." {Philippians 4:6-7 is my go-to prayer for anxiety!}
I made it to our polka-dotted meeting room later than I had preferred to, and was pleasantly greeted by our admin Tiffany and photographer Angelica; their warms smiles make me happy.  I made my way around the room to give hugs and "good morning"s to each of our leaders, and members.  I was delighted to see a few new faces in the room, including mamas who I had texted with, and got to meet for the very first time.
Angelica and I figured out how to get the CD player working, and played Danielle's Noonan's EP: "Restoration," in the background, as we continued to chat.  We said a prayer to thank God for what He was about to do, and blessed the brunch that we were about to share.  After some more time to fellowship, we made announcements, which included a new pregnancy announcement, which is *always* exciting news!  Yay for a new Chikadee in the near-future!
Kristyl had a fun icebreaker for our group: a relay race that involved a cotton ball, a bendy straw, and a lot of laughing!
We have a competitive group of mamas!  Guess which team won.  Haha!
Kristyl shared the message that God spoke to her, as she prepared this activity for the group.  "When you first hear, 'move this cotton ball across the room, using only this straw', multiple thoughts cross your mind:  'That's a long way.  How am I supposed to do that with just the straw?  Am I going to have to get on the ground and blow this cotton ball across the floor with this straw...'  But God will move those mountains for you, if you have faith enough to believe.  And faith as a mustard seed can change everything, in a *moment.*"
After that fun game and insightful word, Elia came forward to share her Glorifying Moment with the group.  Without going into complete detail, tears flowed as Elia shared her upbringing, in which she witnessed travesties against her family.  But The Lord delivers us out of them all.  "God is our Heavenly Father, even if it seems we don't have a father on Earth.  HE is our Daddy.  Father to the fatherless."  He has shown Himself faithful to Elia and to her family.

At that time, I checked on Crystal.  She had taken a third detour, and found her way to a clearer path!  She was going to make it!  We got into our small groups and took prayer requests.  I could hear the chains falling as the mamas poured their hearts out.  This is what Mama Chiks is: a refuge, a safe place, where you can cry out to God, and know that your Sisters will hold you hand, embrace you, hand you a tissue, and cry with you.
We circled up into our prayer circle and lifted up our prayer intentions to The Lord.  The energy that flows among us we pray His word back to Him, knowing that it will not return void, is electrifying.
As we prayed, Crystal and her best friend/best assistant Nancy came into the room, breathing heavily from the rush of their morning.  It had taken them three hours and fifteen minutes to make a forty-five minute trip!  Praise God for their resilience and for their faithfulness.  They held true to their word.
So, at that point, Crystal looked at her watch and said, "I've got 23 minutes.  Let's do this!" {We had allotted at least an hour for Crystal to speak; she was going to move fast!  but she made sure we were not going to miss the blessing God had for us on that morning.}
Here are my notes from her message, which she asked us to title:
Remembering What we Should Forget and Forgetting What we Should Remember
Crystal referenced Numbers 13:25-32 AMP, which tells the story of Moses and Aaron's assignment to take the land which The Lord had given them.  Moses, instead, sent in twelve spies to assess the land, who returned with a report that "the people who dwell there are strong, and the cities are fortified and very large," making it seem impossible they would possess the land.  Joshua and Caleb, however, rise up to say they were well able to conquer it.
"After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, the Lord said to Joshua son of Nun, Moses’ minister, "Moses My servant is dead. So now arise [take his place], go over this Jordan, you and all this people, into the land which I am giving to them, the Israelites." [Joshua 1:1 AMP]
In Joshua 6:1-5 AMP, the plan is set out that Joshua was to march around the city of Jericho, a fenced town with high walls, once a day for six days, with his men of war.  Then, on the seventh day, seven priests, bearing seven trumpets are to march around the city walls seven times and then blow their trumpets.  Then all the people were to shout a great shout, and the wall shall fall!
"Now, Joshua has got to be thinking, "we've waited forty years for this plan?!"" says Crystal, "the first thing we remember is our failures more than our successes.  God had already delivered them from so much.  When it looked like there was no way around the Red Sea, and it seemed they were trapped, God parted the Red Sea.  When it seemed they would starve in the wilderness, He sent manna from heaven.  He delivered them from plagues..."
"They had seen all of the miracles, but they remembered, instead, what they should have forgotten, and they forgot what they were supposed to remember."
"We need to be Promise-focused instead of problem-focused.  All it takes is one word from God to turn everything around.  We are never too uneducated or too poor.  He never questioned His ability when He chose you; see if you can trust His ability.  Sometimes, all we can talk about are the walls."
Crystal described the calling on her family.  "The Lord wouldn't leave us alone about planting a new church in Royse City.  He has shown us one supernatural miracle after another."  She described this time in her life as the scariest and most exhilarating.  The only way she could survive in these waters is if God's hand was holding her up from drowning.   They've seen so many miracles.  Their house in Sulphur Springs sold to the first buyer.  Even though they've doubled their debt to acquire a new home in Royse City, where they don't know anybody, they know that God has called them knowing the walls were there.
"Rely on God.  If He called you to do it, you can do it."
In the book of Joshua, there is only one verse talking about the walls; however, in Numbers, there are multiple verses talking about the fortified walls around Jericho.  Crystal pointed out that they're the same walls.  It's just a matter of focus.  "Where your focus goes, God's power follows.  Focus your eyes on Heaven."
"Peter walked on water because of the storm.  Sarah conceived a child because she was barren.  The problem comes first, the miracle comes second.  The thing that qualifies you for a miracle is your problem.  He is your Provision.  He goes before you as a shield.  But He only goes where you are already walking.  Peter didn't walk on water, he walked on a WORD, and that word was, "Come."
"God's word is enough.  It is greater than recession.  It is greater than a budget.  It is greater than a medical diagnosis, a layoff... Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things unseen."
"All you need is one scripture to restore your marriage, to bring a wayward child home.  It is the unlock code to get in."  Crystal said, "God spoke to me and told me to, "Pray my word, not what you want.""
"Believe in addition, not subtraction; opportunity, not obstacle; possibility, not impossibility."
"Your best friend is waiting for you.  Every best friend starts out as a stranger."
"You are on a treasure hunt for miracles, and the Word gives you the cues on where to go."
"The Word is the lamp unto your feet, but it only shines where you're going.  Is your faith moving?  Your actions show where your faith is."
"Promises are given because there will always be reason for doubt.  We think we get promises, and it will go smoothly thereafter.  When the truth is, God gives us promises because He knows there will be reason for doubt."
Joshua 23:14: "And behold, this day I am going the way of all the earth. Know in all your hearts and in all your souls that not one thing has failed of all the good things which the Lord your God promised concerning you. All have come to pass for you; not one thing of them has failed."
We will look back, just as Joshua did, and say, "God was my wealth, my provision.  We walked on water."  It's not going to happen without a fight.  In the moments when you feel like you're losing, stay in the game.  Have faith and patience.  Romans 8:31 says, "If God is for us, who can {successfully} come against us?"
"We will walk on the storms that were sent to kill us!"
Psalm 65:11 says "You crown the year with Your goodness, and Your paths drip with abundance."  Crystal shared a dream she had in which Jesus told her to tell His children, "Cleave to me," as he handed them gold crowns, and jewels the size of their heads.  When you see the world digging, hold on to Jesus."
And she ended with this, "Surely, you're more valuable than the birds.  Birds wake up, every morning, fat and broke, and they're singing about it!  Surely, you're more valuable than the birds in the air." [Matthew 6:26]
{And she did all of that in 23 minutes.  Which is why I call her "Crystal Sparks!!!"}

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