A Big Event!!!!!

Happy New Year to all my blog friends! 

I am so excited to tell you about a fabulous event that I get to be a part of in a week and a half.  On January 23rd I will be singing with the Bay Area Big Band in Traverse City, MI!  Like . . . a real big band!  I am doing three traditional big band numbers the most exciting of which is ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’!  That is a dream come true!

I also get to put a couture evening gown on and sing Christmas in Heaven AND . . . I have the honor of ending the entire show with my Patriotic Medley accompanied by a full police color guard.

To all of you girly girls out there . . . you will be thrilled to know that I will be having hair and makeup done, and . . . wait for it . . . I have three outfit changes!  Remember I said I will be wearing a couture gown????  You are never going to guess what I paid for it!!!!  This is such a God thing!  I found a gown that was originally over $700 for $56!!!!  Can you believe that????  SUCH a God thing!  Thank you, Lord!

All of this is in effort to raise funds for an incredible cause – an organization called CAST – Citizens Against Sex Trafficking.  This is an organization that is in the process of building a safe house for girls that they rescue out of sex trafficking.  Did you know that Michigan is ranked SECOND in the U.S. in terms of having the most sex trafficking?  So often, these girls are right under our noses – they are being controlled and trafficked in our own towns and neighborhoods and we have NO idea!  CAST is raising awareness among law enforcement and teaching regular folks like you and me how to recognize it and report it!  The goal is not to punish these precious girls, who so often have been forced into trafficking, but to rescue, rehabilitate, and restore them!!!!

If you live in the Traverse City area – please consider coming out for this exciting event!  You can get tickets at https://mynorthtickets.com/events/winter-solstice-gala.  If you are too far away – stay tuned for many pictures and updates about this wonderful event!

As I wrap this up this week, I want to encourage you in something the Lord is working on in me.  Perhaps it is something you could use a reminder about.  I want to remind you today to ‘die to self.’  Sometimes I let myself think that the way I treat others is dependent upon how they treat me.  The truth is, my friends, that is the farthest thing from the truth.  The reality, in Christ, is that I am to treat others as Christ would treat them NO MATTER WHAT!  I am called to remove myself from the equation and to love and respect and be kind absolutely no matter what.

Think about a person or persons in your life that might be a constant struggle.  Maybe a coworker that likes to get under your skin, or a family member who likes to argue just for the sake of being heard, or a spouse that has wronged you. 

Now think about the Lord: 

Isaiah 2:12 & 17:

“The Lord Almighty has a day in store for all the proud and lofty, for all that is exalted.  The arrogance of man will be brought low and human pride humbled; the Lord alone will be exalted in that day.”

You see, friends, the Lord has your back!  He’s got this.  That takes you and me right out of the equation!

Ephesians 4:32:

“Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

Wow . . . If we think about the enormity of all that God has forgiven us for, individually, how can we NOT forgive others and be kind?

And . . . my favorite passage in all of Scripture . . .

Philippians 2:5-8:

“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:  Who being in very nature God did not consider equality with God something to be used to His own advantage; instead, He made Himself nothing by taking on the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.  And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled himself by becoming obedient to death – even death on a cross!”

That one leaves me speechless!

Today, my friends . . . in your relationships with others . . . have the same mindset as our sweet Lord Jesus . . . die to self!


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