Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Mama, where do babies come from?

It's the iconic scary momma question "...where do babies come from?" And talk about that creative writing class you failed in school. Boy, you sure get creative now huh? And we become dorks and talk about things like storks and come up with stupid nicknames or try to go scientific. Ahhh, good times.

Last night I saw where babies come from.

I was invited to birthing ceremony of a ministry in Booneville MS called "Breaking the Chains" ministry. This ministry is the heart burst of Stevie and Cindy Carter. Three and a half years ago Stevie was rummaging through his son's drawers and found an unsent letter addressed to him from his son. His son told him how much he loved him but how he wished so much that he could fully be his dad, instead of a drunk. That letter changed Stevie's life, and his families'. Since then, Stevie has spoken in over one hundred churches with a recovery ministry called Living Free.

Living Free is a raw, real, love ministry where the one overriding belief is, "Jesus Christ can change your life." And it not just church talk for them. They are alive because Jesus did change their lives. And they bring hope to fellow strugglers because they know Jesus can change them to. So Stevie and their leader, Tommy, have been letting their testimony overcome the evil of addiction in lives all over the region.

Isa 58:12 says "some of you will rebuild the deserted ruins of your cities. Then you will be known as a rebuilder of walls and a restorer of homes." God's plan is that he will use the restored to be the restorers.

That's one way babies are born...

Ministries like Living Free and Breaking the Chains are birthed from people who are 'living free' and from whom 'the chains have been broken'. God uses the healed to heal, the mended to repair and the free to unshackled the bound. That's just His way. And it works and it's wonderful.

Hab 2:2-3 says, "Write the vision down on tablets, that the one who reads it may run.

God places people together to dream. One of the great Crosswind blessings is truly loving other believers and partnering with them. What happens is that we get to dream together, to pass along ideas, to experiment and pass along the results, to struggle together, to share victories and defeats. Out of that emerges these God-sized strategies... visions, that we can write down together, so we who read them can run. To paraphrase a well-known verse, "Our cities perish without shared vision."

That's the other way babies are born...

Breaking the Chains is a ministry birthed from a family 'living free' from the chains that once held them, and sharing the collective dreams and strategies that God has for his city. I'm curious if all God stuff isn't that way... recieving what God has to offer (healing, salvation, freedom, love)... and inviting others to come and help give it away.

To our new heroes... Stevie and Cindy, breaking free!

I love seeing dreams come true.


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