Las Vegas is the lightest city in the world physically with all of the neon but the darkest city spiritually and emotionally. It's a very greedy and self indulgent city.
Even though prostitution is legal, the women cannot solicit themselves on the street. So, they have a bunch of different people passing out cards with their phone number on it. These people passing out the cards are everywhere on the strip and they are varying in age and ethnicity. Here's one of them:
Can you believe that? This is like a grandma advertising prostitutes. The cards usually have naked girls on them. So, many people take it not knowing what it is. Also, people throw down the cards, so the street is literally littered with porn. Brock always speaks to the people passing out these cards. They never reply. One night, Brock said, "No nudities," to one of the guys as he passed by. The guy laughed and said, "Not tonight." That's the only response he got from any of them.
One day, we saw a couple pass us. Then, we saw a man running after them. He chased them all the way down the street until he got back his stolen articles. He was a store owner and the couple had taken some jerseys or something. Who knows why they felt the need to steal.
Brock took one homeless guy out to lunch and gave this guy a pizza. They both told him that heroine put them on the streets. I hate heroine!
For all of its darkness, I feel a pull toward this city. I want to pray for it even while I am at home. Please pray for the city as well. There are many hurting people in Vegas.
Monday, August 31, 2009
Las Vegas is the lightest city in the world physically with all of the neon but the darkest city spiritually and emotionally. It's a very greedy and self indulgent city.
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Well, I went to Mississippi, Montana, Houston, and Las Vegas over the last few weeks. I participated in 4 shows, wrote a book (over 50 hours of writing), and squeezed in 6 shows, 4 chocolate shops, 2 buffets, and a roller coaster in 4 days in Las Vegas. I flew on 11 flights, 4 of which were late (some were very late), and one made an emergency landing in a different city. I've been in and out of three different time zones.
Needless to say, I'm tired as I sit here on my couch in my own living room. Brock is going to ride his dirtbike with a friend today, so maybe I can catch up on laundry and rest. We leave tomorrow to drive to Atlanta to film a TV show Monday morning (don't know too much about it but will fill you in when I find out).
Next week, I will share my adventures in Las Vegas. You can live vicariously through me for Las Vegas because you don't need to go. It's getting worse and worse. When I went the first time many years ago, it was marketed as a family place. It wasn't too bad. Then, they've begun the "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas!" It's certainly becoming less and less of a family place. I saw a few children there, but they always seemed to be European (perhaps nudity isn't as big of a shock to them). Anyway, my point is, live vicariously through me and then you won't have to go there!
Thursday, August 27, 2009
One night as we were sitting outside of the Cocoa Tree, someone sat outside across the street with their guitar and keyboard and began singing. He had such an amazing voice. Slowly, the crowd kept growing and growing because his voice was incredable, or maybe everyone in the neighborhood knows to come there every Friday night to have a jam session. We later found out that this guy and the girl sitting beside him were on the TV show "Can You Duet?" They made it to the top 10.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
The other day, we took a motorcycle day trip. It was a pretty drive...
We went to Loretta Lynn's ranch in Hurricane Mills, TN.
They were having the biggest amateur moto race there.
They had their own little city set up with campers and stores and such everywhere.
It was fun!
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
In Mississippi, a girl named Jessie came to the show. She had seen us before and loved the show. She brought her parents and a friend of hers. I noticed that her friend was blind. Jessie's mother told me the story about her. Jessie wanted to bring this girl with her because she had been praying for her. After being diagnosed with cancer, she had brain surgery that basically left her blind. The girl had somewhat lost her faith in the Lord along the way.
Brock did a new illusion that night to illustrate the gospel. It involved using a blindfold and telling about a lady who was blind. Jessie's mother said that this really got this girl's attention. She didn't accept the invitation to follow Christ that night, but the Lord is most certainly working in her heart.
In Montana, there was a little boy, probably about 10 years old, backstage. He kept crawling up the ramp trying to see Brock as he performed. Normally, I wouldn't really have paid much attention, but I had a feeling about him. I encouraged him to go to the top of the ramp almost on the stage in order to see Brock better. During the message, he listened very closely. When Brock asked peole who were ready to give their lives to Christ to raise their hands, the little boy raised his. Then, instead of going to the tent where Brock instructed everyone who raised their hands to go to, he took off somewhere backstage. I later found out that his dad was involved with the production crew. He was probably going to talk with his dad about it. It was cool that by giving him a front row seat, in a sense, I was getting a front row seat in how the Lord was moving in his life.
Posted by AUNY at 5:54 AM
Monday, August 24, 2009
I had a great time with my parents. They took me to some of my favorite restaurants. We played games together, laughed together, and worked out together. In fact, I am still sore from the strenuous workout Dad had us do last week.
I finished writing my book. It took me a week to write it, but 30 years to live it. It's a very rough draft. In fact, some of it is still scribbled in my notebook from when I was on planes and didn't have a computer. However, I feel really good about finishing it. Now, as I get it all typed up, I can, in a sense, rewrite it.
Last night, I flew to Las Vegas to join Brock out here. He is still in a class, but he has his nights off. I will hang out at the pool during the days and go to shows at night. We like to go to shows because it inspires us with our show. Pray that our time here will be productive.
Posted by AUNY at 5:46 AM
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Thursday night, we took Mom's car to Houston to go to dinner and shop some. When we were in Best Buy, it began to rain fiercely. Dad went to get the car and pull up to the curb as we waited just inside the door.
We saw Mom's car drive up, and we began running for it. It was raining even more profusely, so I tucked my head low and tried to keep from slipping to the ground. I flung open the backseat door and was in the process of sitting down in the car when I heard a man's voice coming from the front seat. It was not my dad's voice. It was another man saying, "This is not your car!"
That's when Mom and I both saw that Dad had pulled up behind them. This car was a silver Toyota Avalon and not a silver Toyota Camry. They looked very similar, though!
Instead of saying, "I'm sorry" or anything, I busted out laughing. In fact, we laughed about it on and off all night!
Posted by AUNY at 6:43 AM
Saturday, August 22, 2009
My mom loves her Toyota Camry. She's had several different ones over the years...some Champayne colored, some silver. However, they are always a Camry. In fact, one year, Dad came home with a Dodge for her instead of a new Toyota. He got a really good deal on it, and it seemed like a good car. Mom only kept that one for two years before she traded it in for another Toyota Camry.
She takes such good care of her car. In fact, she keeps it more clean and nice than any guy I've ever known. Because of this, I am always extra careful when I'm driving her car, especially when I am driving in and out of the garage. Their garage is what Brock calls a "one car, one motorcycle garage." It can fit more than one car, but it's not really big enough for two cars. Somehow, they do it though. In fact, they fit Mom's car and Dad's small truck in there. They have it all taped off on the sides where you need to line up your side mirrors so that you can close the garage door but not run into the shelves lining the front wall. It's also tight on the sides of the cars. We won't talk about how the long gash on the side wall shaped exactly like a side mirror of a car got there.
Yesterday, I went out to drive to the track to take my morning run. When I opened mom's car door, I noticed a can of air freshener lying in the driver's seat. Not such a subtle hint, Mom! Hahaha! I bet after running in this hot weather being all sweaty and leaving the car in the hot garage that it would stink!
You would think that since she loves and knows her car so well, that what happened Thursday night wouldn't have happened. I will tell you about that tomorrow...
Posted by AUNY at 6:27 AM
Friday, August 21, 2009
In Bible study Wednesday night, dad spoke about different prayers in the Bible. One of the prayers we read was Jesus' prayer while he was in the garden just before He was crucified. He was praying for His disciples when He said, "I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to You, Holy Father, protect them by the power of Your name---the name You gave Me---so that they may be one as We are one." John 17:11.
My mom then said that when He said "protect," He must have meant spiritually, because all of the disciples were martyred except John who was exiled to an island. I began to think about that. I do feel like the Lord chooses to protect us physically at times. However, He cares the most about our spiritual health. Even if we need to go through something physically in order to get closer to the Lord, it's worth it to Him.
The most important thing in the whole world to Him is our relationship with Him. We are so human that we cannot help but think in the physical. To the Lord, the physical is a far second from the spiritual. Is this what He means when He says to "seek first His kingdom?" Is He saying, "Get your mind off of the physical and start dwelling on the spiritual?" Sometimes I apologize to the Lord for being so human. I get so distracted by the things of this world that I cannot see past it. I cannot wait until the day when I will see Him face to face and not be inhibited by my physical nature!
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Well, one good thing happened while I was stuck on planes and at airports for three days. I wrote half of my book. I'm writing the rest now. I have been wanting to write one and even felt as if the Lord wanted me to write it. However, I never knew quite how to go about it until now.
Two things (or people I should say) inspired me to write it now. One person is Michael Gates Gill. He wrote an autobiography called How Starbucks Saved My Life. In it, he tells about how he was a son of privilege working as vice president of a Fortune 500 business. Within a matter of a few years, he loses his job, family, and finds out that he has a brain tumor. He gets a job at Starbucks and learns to lead a "normal" life and loves it! I found it so interesting to read about his life. There was an afterward in the book telling about how some people had been inspired to quit their jobs in order to take on one they really enjoyed or start their own business from home to be able to spend more time with their family. I finished reading that book the first day of my traveling nightmare.
I have thought about writing a book about the power of prayer in my life, but I always approached it as a Bible study. I thought that I needed to write not only about what happened to me but also how you could apply it. However, I am not a Bible teacher. I am not gifted in this way, so I would get stuck right there. After reading this book by Michael Gates Gill, I decided that I could write my story and people could apply it however they saw fit. If it inspires them, great! If it doesn't, well I hope that it's a good read.
As I was thinking about this, my friend, Stephanie Britt, texted me and told me that I should write a book about the power of prayer in our lives. She said that she thought that it would be powerful. Thanks for that vote of confidence, Steph, and the confirmation that now is the time.
So, I have been fervently writing over the last few days. The words are flowing out of me. Please pray that I write about what I am supposed to write about. Please pray for power and direction.
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Some of you may be wondering why I haven't blogged the last couple of days. Well, the problem is that I have been trying to fly from Montana to Houston. Brock went from Montana to Las Vegas for a magic conference, so I decided to come visit my parents in Houston while Brock was gone. I am going to meet up with him in Vegas Sunday.
My flight was supposed to leave out of Great Falls, Montana at 7:40am Sunday morning. We get on the plane no problem. Then, they come on the intercom and say that they were having trouble with the computer, so they were going to turn it off and reboot it. Well, it didn't work. They had us deplane. 10 1/2 hours later, they put me up in a hotel. So, I stayed in Montana by myself for another night. The plane had so many mechanical problems that they worked on it all day.
When I got there the next morning to try again on the 7:40am flight, the people whom worked at the airline were greeting me and saying that they were going to get me out of there that day! You know that you've been there too long when you make friends with everyone that works there.
That flight to Minneapolis was on time. Then, it was time for me to catch my flight to Nashville and then from there to Houston. In the middle of the flight to Nashville, they said that the weather was bad there, so they were going to land us in Memphis instead. They put us on a different plane. That didn't sound like weather problems to me. Come to find out, the windshield wipers on the plane were broken. We finally got on a new plane where they said that it might get stuffy because the air conditioner was broken.
When I got to Nashville, I'd missed my flight to Houston and it was the last flight out. So, I stayed in Nashville last night and FINALLY got to Houston today...2 days late. It was a frustrating 2 days. Plus, I haven't had a lot of sleep, but I'm at my parents house now where I can rest. Ahhhhh.
Posted by AUNY at 8:26 PM
Saturday, August 15, 2009
It is 4 something in the morning as I write this. We have to fly from Gulfport, Missippi to Great Falls, Montana today. We have a three legs on this flight and we still get there at 1pm. Boy, am I tired! My flight is early tomorrow, too. I have a 4 flight leg tomorrow because I'm flying back to Nashville and then to Houston to stay with my parents for a week while Brock takes a magic class in Vegas. At least I get to rest in Houston.
The show last night was great! We had a packed house. They had to bring in more chairs even after opening up their extension room to the auditorium. Maybe I can tell you more about it later. I have to catch a flight now!
Posted by AUNY at 4:46 AM
Friday, August 14, 2009
There are some really nice people in this town. They are so helpful. At the show, the volunteers were some of the best I've had. They were so accommodating at the restaurants and hotel and everywhere.
The show last night was good. We had a very full day doing two school assemblies and a big show that night. The show happened to be outside. This made things very complicated and hot! It was so humid and sticky. Over 1,500 people showed up which was incredible. Of the ones that gave their lives to the Lord last night, many of them were adults.
Yesterday was tough, but it was worth it. When we were eating dinner after the show, a girl told us about her friend who wanted to follow Jesus, but she was too scared to go and talk with someone right then. She said that she would talk to her mom about it when she got home. Pray for this city. Pray that God continues to move and work and bless.
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Pray for us for the next few days. We are doing 2 school shows today and then doing a big outreach tonight at the fairgrounds here in Brookhaven, MS. Tomorrow, we do an outreach in Gulfport, MS. Saturday, we fly to Montana early in the morning to perform at a festival that night. Pray for His Power, Protection, Provision, and the People who will come.
Pray for our schedule, too. We have lots of early mornings and late nights coming up. I'm already so tired this morning and we've only just begun.
Wednesday, August 12, 2009
I am so proud of our friends! The feeding the homeless thing that we were a part of Monday night is something that our friends Emily, Stephanie, and Lindsey do every Monday night. It's such a great thing.
Our friend, Lucas, is living in the inner city of Nashville to work and live there. He's actually a part of a ministry that feeds the homeless and works with inner city people.
Sunday, our pastor spoke about our friend, Jacob. Our church does a cool thing where they send out 25% of the church every Sunday to serve in the community. 1/4 of the church goes once a month so that they rotate out. He said that he would do whatever they wanted him to do. They told him that they needed someone to go to the nursing home. He said that he didn't know if that would be a fit for him. You see, Jacob is a big muscle guy with lots of tattoos. He ended up going and sitting with a bunch of ladies. He gave them all flowers and painted their finger nails. After that day, he asked if he could go there every time. What a great group of friends we have!
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Saturday, August 08, 2009
On Saturday, while we were in Monterey, we went to this restaurant with some people with Compassion.
Then, we went to the Fisherman's Wharf
The best part about the Wharf was that there was a Turkish Festival going on that day!
The food was so good!
This lady painted on water! It was amazing!
Then, she placed a piece of paper on top of the water and pulled it off...
She makes her own paint...
Friday, August 07, 2009
We took the 1 from San Francisco to Monterey. It is a beautiful drive right along the coast. Here's the pictures I took on the way...
We stopped by this strawberry farm. There was a sign that said "jam tasting," so Brock pulled over. It was really cool.
They had couches and chairs if you wanted to hang out for a little while.
They had chocolate covered strawberries and strawberry truffles. The jam was delicious too.
For all of the truffles or jam you bought, you placed cash in the open cash box on the counter. They used the honor system. I didn't know that existed anymore.