Remnants of our Home – Our heartache from Hurricane Harvey

Poem titled:

Remnants of our Home-Our Heartache from Hurricane Harvey

“It looks like monsters” the little ones whisper as they pass us by.

“Yes, Slumbering monsters”

“Shhhhhhhhhhhhh, don’t wake the giant”

Oh my dear, it’s too late

He’s already stirred and been awoken

He’s turned our lives and homes and memories into rotting piles of debris

He’s the monster

We are not

We are the dying piles of fading rubble that was once cherished as our home

We cannot patch ourselves

We are that part of you that was ripped away

Release us now

Rise up and live again

Let us go

Don’t let your heartbreak anymore

Let us go

You will smile again

Poetry by Laura Aranda

I mean no disrespect.

Tribute written and dedicated to those surviving Hurricane Harvey and Irma.

You are not forgotten.

The bat hanging upside-down laughs at the Topsy-turvy world.

Tonight was truly a priceless memory I pray my children never forget. What an amazing God we are so blessed to know and serve. He is an awesome Creator. I’m in awe of his wonders.

We went to a cave entrance and sat in an outdoor cathedral amphitheater with about two Hundred other spectators. It was so quiet that I felt like I was in church.

We watched in almost complete silence as over 60,000 bats swirled and danced their way out of the cave entrance into the full moonlight.

No cameras or videoing was allowed which made the whole event all the more special.

It was the perfect weather.

A huge massive cloud of bats.

And a full moon over the gorgeous cave.

I felt so in tune with nature as I sat in silence with all the others. It was truly a sensational experience.

I took photos as we left to share here.

Enjoy!!❤️

The sands of West Texas moan in the wind as it aches to stretch across the plains to its people and swallow up the greedy devouring waters that engulf the southeast region.

“Bring it to us if you so dare!” The sands and rocks and deserts of West Texas challenge the gulf as their craggy hearts break just a little more watching a portion of their land and people drown in the murky unforgiving waters.

How all the sand and stones in Texas wishes they could march to the beat of a Texan drum to reclaim the land swallowed up by the storm’s vengeance.

The great help they could be smothering out the terrorizing waters creating an unsurpassable barrier.

Sandstorms whirl and dance silently in a bitter wind knowing they are too far removed to benefit their own. A solemn dry wind across the arid land howls a remorseful melody.

“Our thoughts are with you.”

If the mountains had feet they would uproot themselves and throw themselves into the gulf creating high heavy borders just for you keeping the tears at bay.

The tall pine and even the prickly cacti long to stretch their arms around you Southeast Texas and cradle their wounded in a warm dry place of protection. The dry thirsty desert yearns to drink in all of Southeast Texan sorrows until there was no more.

Texas will re-emerge glorious, whole and victorious. You are strong. You are beautiful. We stand with you.

Pecos- The wild west Texas

Evacuation from Hurricane Harvey brought us here to where my husband is working. The wild west Texas. A forgotten town with tumbleweeds and dust storms.

But we came a cross a church here…a group of people actually that have no pastor and no church but now meet and worship together the best they can. An acoustic guitar and Spanish worship songs. It was lovely.

I was able to greet the tiny group of people and talk about awareness of human trafficking way out in West Texas.

They bought all the books I had brought with me. I hurriedly grabbed 8 books on my way out of southeast Texas when evacuating.

I’m excited to hear about their responses to the book. What lovely Pecos ladies…..I’m scared I might be leaving a portion of my heart in this city. They say if you drink the water here you can never leave.

I’m going to miss them so much.

And the city that’s forgotten is not forgotten by the Lord. I don’t want to leave.

I pray God brings them oneness truth and a good pastor. They are wonderful people.

I Am- Women’s Night of Worship

Excited to be a part of an annual women’s conference in Deville, LA in late October of this year!

 Also you can order a book now and I’ll mail it to you prior to arrival if you like. I will have signed copies there for purchase.

This is going to be an outstanding night!

Join us.

More info is on their Facebook page.

Trading Judah for a Washpot

Pastor has been teaching on the book of Ruth during bible study on Wednesday nights. Last night he mentioned what the name of Moab meant. It meant washing basin. In Psalms chapter 60 God calls it a slave’s washbasin meaning this place was lower and worth less than what the slaves used to hold their dirty water….and this is the place Naomi and her family left Bethlehem-Judah for. They left a land of praise (even though it was in a dry spell) to go to a filthy land that did not belong to them.

Wow! What could have been if Naomi and her husband had not left? What if they stayed? Regardless, Ruth and Naomi come back to the land marred, scarred, broken and with nothing to show for the ten years spent in a land Naomi didn’t belong. She lost everything.

Sin will always take you farther than you want to go, keep you longer than you want to stay and cost you more than you want to pay.

What an incredible story of redemption though. Today during my studies online I came across a Leadership class I had to take titled: Becoming the Go-To person in Church taught by Bro. Luke Levine. The following are a few things he taught that I wanted to share. It is so good!

To tie all of this in with the story above about, Naomi…. IF you just endure through the lean times and the dry times in church the cycle will revolve and there will be a time of restoration. Become busy in the house of God. Find yourself a place and stick to it!

  1. Live a spiritually disciplined life including a consistent prayer life and study life. A prayer life is foundational to everything we do. To be an effective laborer in the harvest field we must pray and study correctly. To be the Go to person in church we must be worshipping and be involved. It will be easier for God to equip a spiritual man than to make a spiritual man.
  2. See and hear and respond to your Pastor’s vision. Anything more than one vision is di-vision. Find out what he is passionate about and where he needs help. Then get to work to support his vision. It is a 1000 times easier to criticize something than to create something. Be a problem solver. Be a solution creator. Get behind him and be useful.
  3. Be observant. Take a close look around your church. There is a list of things to be done at church. Some things are obvious. Be a part of a solution. Show up early to church and help.
  4. Have a get-it-done attitude. Fight every adversary that comes against the church. Find a way to get things done. Have a sense of mission and passion for the work of the church. There is nothing like working for the Kingdom of God. Make yourself useful in the local church. Be faithful in the few things….whatever it takes. If it needs to get done and nobody is doing it…do it. Read the story of Nehemiah…from Rubble to Rebuilding in 52 days. Those were go-to people that made that mission come to pass.
  5. Be accessible. Be available. We make time for the things that are important to us. What are your priorities? Be willing to make time for something that may not be directly important to you. Be easy to talk to. Your leader is far too busy to search you out. Just be there. Just show up and help. What if God was only accessible to us as much as we were to the kingdom/church?
  6. Follow through. Don’t just be a project starter. Follow through. Get it done well. Get it done on time. Make a task list. Write it down. Make a list of things you want to do. Start a project and finish it so you don’t frustrate leaders.
  7. Be faithful. One of the primary difference between a faithful and wise servant and the evil servant is faithfulness. Be at church every time the doors are open. Be there. If there is outreach, work day, prayer meeting….Be there. Keep in mind, that for every time David killed a bear or a lion, there were hundreds of days of herding livestock.

Faithfulness always trumps Fireworks.

Be faithful. Be consistent.

God might lead you to a Goliath.

The Lighthouse in Killeen

I was super excited to be on another quick weekend trip with my publisher of Our Written Lives Publishing. We worshipped with a wonderful church in Killeen. This was my first time here. What a mission field!!!!

We went to The Lighthouse church in Killeen Sunday morning. New guests were there for the first time. Excited to see what God has in store for their lives.

Then visited Fort Hood. It was an amazing weekend with great friends and food. They put a wonderful fruit basket together for us.

I felt so special and blessed by all the love this church gave us. The people are genuine and kind. The worship there is real and it is multicultural. The five hour drive was worth it. I spoke about human trafficking and gave a challenge of compassion to them. God can heal the broken hearted and the bruised.

I believe God touched lives and mended hearts this weekend and placed people on the right path. Can't wait to return and visit again.
To inquire about any future speaking engagements email me lauraaranda@owlofhope.com

If you give a Woman a Bible…

If you give a woman a bible…

She is going to ask for a bible study.

When you give her the bible study, she will probably ask for prayer for her friends and family.

When she’s finished, she may ask for an anointed napkin to bring them as well.

Then she will probably ask for the church van to start picking her family up for church.

When church begins, she will probably want to meet the pastor and all the saints.

She will start feeling the presence of the Lord and might even start weeping and repenting.

She might even get carried away and start speaking in tongues all over the church house.

She may even end up rolling in the floor praising the Lord.

When she is done, she will probably want to go tell all her friends about what has happened.

You will have to organize an outreach team to go and help explain to her community what your church is all about.

She will be right up in the middle of that outreach team testifying and telling her story of deliverance.

She will probably ask you to help her invite them all to watch her get baptized.

So you will create invite cards to mail out to the whole block and she will ask to post before and after pictures of her life on the multimedia screens to show how far God has brought her.

When she looks at the pictures, she will get so excited she will start dancing and shouting all over again.

She will ask for some bible studies so she can go teach them on her own.

She will fill a pew or two with guests on the day of her baptism.

After she is baptized in Jesus name, she will want to see the baptism certificate and show it to all her loved ones she brought with her and maybe even hang it on her living room wall.

Everyone around her is curious about her change and wants to know more …which means she will need a lot of other good women around her guiding her and helping her teach those bible studies she is setting up.

Looking at the woman with her new bible will remind her loved ones that they are hungry and thirsty for something this world cannot provide.

So, they will ask for a bible study and chances are if they ask for a bible study they are going to want a bible to go with it.

Interview opportunity

Thank you ❤️

http://crystalschmalz.com/meet-laura-aranda-author-of-pushing-back-the-darkness/

Crystal Schmalz's blog

Check her out and the interview she did with me.

And as always feel free to take a selfie with my book and tag me on social media platforms.

Honest Amazon reviews are always welcome!!

Facebook.com/AuthorLauraAranda

You can contact me via email lauraaranda@owlofhope.com for speaking events scheduled.