Saturday, August 20, 2011

Beautiful Hope is Expressed Out Loud!

"If my life is broken when given to Jesus, it is because pieces will feed a multitude, while a loaf will satisfy only a little lad." - Ruth Stull

From :

On November 5, 2006, while driving home from church, the Barrick family was struck head-on by a drunk driver going 80 miles per hour. Andy, Linda, 15 year old Jen and 11 year old Josh sustained life-threatening injuries. 

All four were rushed to different hospitals. Jen was not expected to live through the night, but God miraculously intervened. She was in a coma for 5 weeks and had severe traumatic brain injuries and multiple skull fractures.

The process of emerging from the coma took weeks and the doctors warned that Jen would be cursing and screaming in confusion. Instead, she was praying out loud and singing praise songs continuously! 
Matthew 12:34 declares: "For out of the heart, the mouth speaks." 

Jen didn't remember that 2+2=4. She didn't know that she was hurt. She didn't even know she had a brother. However, she knew every word to every praise song and every scripture she had hidden in her heart. It was amazing! 

The power of the Holy Spirit was so alive in her.

Although still recovering and still suffering from memory loss and "Cortical Blindness," Jen is an awesome example of God's grace. 

This teenager, who was once a quiet, deep-thinker, is now expressing her passion for God out loud to everyone she meets. She is uninhibited in her worship and excitement for the Lord. 

Jen says, "I will never doubt my Lord and my Savior. He is the one healing me daily."

Since the tragic wreck the Barrick family's commitment to serve God and proclaim His Faithfulness is stronger than ever!

You can look at this family, all that they’ve been through, the heartache, the agony…..and you can say “How is this fair?  Here was a great Christian family.  Why would God allow this?”  But the Barricks wouldn’t want you to say this or even think it.  God prepared them to be a light for Him.  He prepared them and chose them for so much more.  They shouldn’t even be alive, but God saved them for His purposes.  If this accident hadn’t happened, they wouldn’t be able to reach so many people with the Gospel.  People are being saved when they share their testimony!

Jen is completely amazing, but I have no idea what she was like before the accident.  I can only see now.  I know that she is completely changed from what she was, and I know she is enduring pain and suffering each day.  I know that many days are a complete struggle.  BUT, what I see is a woman full of the Holy Spirit; God has allowed this young lady to be a tremendous encouragement, prayer warrior, and speaker.  She has spoken to thousands about God’s awesome love, of His redemption.  She has been a blessing to Faith and me in just the short time we have known her.  She has impacted countless with her book called Hope Out Loud Prayers.  These are prayers that she either prayed while in the hospital or wrote in her prayer journal after the accident, and they are POWERFUL.

I watched the Joni Erickson video about the Barrick’s life and I saw Linda……it just hit me so hard when she said that she kept trying to “fix Jen” after the accident…to get the old Jen back.  She was crying and had to confess that to the Lord.  I identified with her, because that would be me.  If this had happened to Faith, I would want God to heal her back to the way she was.  I would be confessing just like Linda!  I have had this quote for the past couple of years, and I came back to it this week.  Accepting God’s will……

 The deepest spiritual lessons are not learned by His letting us have our way in the end, but by His making us wait, bearing with us in love and patience until we are able honestly to pray what He taught His disciples to pray: Thy will be done.  Acceptance of whatever that means is the great victory of faith that overcomes the world.
Passion and Purity – Elisabeth Elliot

Please take the time to go to their ministry website,!  I don’t know if you're saved or unsaved, if you've fallen away from the Lord or if you're searching.  I DO know that lives can be changed in an instant.  You never know what a day holds.  So many of us who claim to be Christians are living our lives accomplishing nothing for the Lord.  I just want to shake us all and say, LOOK what this family is doing!  Look at everything they’re accomplishing and they are hurting and it is a struggle every time they get up to speak.  How much more could we do??

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Expectant Beauty

The girls were asked to do a shoot for a young couple expecting their first baby.  This sort of thing wasn’t done when I was having my babies.  In fact, now they have all sorts of cool things they didn’t have back then.  They have CUTE maternity clothes!  Where were those before?  We had to go around in those massive tent looking things everywhere! Talk about making a pregnant woman look even larger.  And now, the “expectant” mother photo shoots……ADORABLE!
This particular mother-to-be, Jessica, goes to our church.  Because I wanted a husband’s point of view, I asked him what he thought made her beautiful.  He said, “I think she is the coolest person... that's why I married her. She almost never gets mad (even being pregnant) and if she does get mad she likes to fix the problem. The things that make her happy are ice cream, being outside, and serving people. Those are other reasons I married her. I know that she would go anywhere in the world to tell others about Christ. She is not such a great dancer, but it is so much fun to watch. I have never met someone who does not like her.”
I like what he said about her never getting mad.  She has 4 of my 6 kids in the children’s music program.  If that doesn’t send her over the edge, nothing will!  I offered to give them to her tonight to help prepare her for motherhood…..she turned me down. :-)
Jessica is funny, trendy, smart, and gorgeous.  But, the most important thing that her husband pointed out is that she would go anywhere to tell others about Christ.  She has a passion for the lost.  I am so blessed to call her my friend and thankful that she is a part of our church.