4.25.2013

I hate living with regrets


    "Um, excuse me?"
    I looked up.  "Yes?"
    "Is anybody sitting here?"  He pointed to the empty chair across for me.
    "No..." I answered warily.
    "Coffee shop is a little crowded today." He gave a small shrug as he carefully set down his mug of coffee (I could smell that it was a white chocolate mocha - same as mine) and a book on the table.
    "Oh," I said absent-mindedly.  I hadn't really noticed.  Peeta and Katniss had kept me distracted. "I've been reading."  I motioned to my book.
    He gave a small grin.  "Ah, that's a good one."
    I smiled back.
    "I hated the third one, though."
    "So did I!"
    Slightly awkward pause.
    "Well," he said abruptly.  "Don't let me keep you from your reading.  Really, there just wasn't any other seat and you seemed like the least likely person I could bother."
    I cocked my head a little.  "Why's that?"
    "Well," he began again.  "Because you're sitting by yourself in this way back corner of the cafe with a book and coffee and no one else around.  I just thought that if I took this other seat - which isn't too close to be in your personal space, yet near enough to share your table - I just thought I could drink my coffee and read my book and you wouldn't even have to notice I'm here."
    I was slightly amused by his logic.  I gave a shrug.  "Sure."
    "Great!" he said.
    I looked back down at my book, but only a few seconds later, his voice broke into my thoughts.
    "Sorry to interrupt again, but I just realized how rude I must sound."
    I gave a slightly puzzled looked.  He reached across the table and offered his hand, to introduce himself.  I told him my name, and asked, "Do you live far from here?"
    "No.  I come here quite often actually."
    "Oh really?" I said.  "I've never seen you here before."
    "Are you in the habit of noticing young men?"
    I felt insulted for only a moment before I realized he was being sarcastic.  Two can always play at this game.
    "Of course!" I answered quickly.
    He laughed.  A nice, musical, manly laugh.
    "Well then apparently I'm not much to notice."
    I didn't answer.  Rather, I held my book up closer to my face and continued reading.
    I got lost in my own little world again until I felt something vibrate in my pocket.  I reached for my cell phone, saw it was my mother calling and quickly answered.
    "Honey, where are you?  You've been gone for almost four hours."
    "Oh sorry, Mama.  I'll leave right away.  See you in a bit!...Uh-huh...okay, bye."
    I stood from my seat and gathered my book and mug.
    It wasn't until I was outside, almost to my car, when I remembered the young man who had sat across from me.  And again, I thought how strange it was that I had never seen him there before.
    "Excuse me, miss!"
    I turned.
    He had followed me outside.
    "Yes?"
    He walked across the small lot until he stood just a couple of feet away from me; hands shoved in his pockets, the slight breeze gently ruffling his hair.
    "I must confess something."
    I waited.
    "Actually, I need to ask you something."
    I raised my eyebrows, still waiting.
    "If you knew that you would probably never get the chance to do something, would you take a shot at doing it at least once to see what would happen?"
    My brow furrowed slightly as I pondered his question.  
    First of all, what a strange thing to ask after having only met a few hours ago.  And secondly, in a cafe parking lot?  This seemed like more of a question for a college classroom.
    But I knew what my answer was.
    "I would take a shot at it.  It's called faith to hope that something good will come of it.  And anyway, I hate living with regrets."
    He grinned at me.  "Me too.  Which leads me to my next question..."
    I stood waiting.  He seemed flustered.  
    "Would you read this?"
    He shoved something into my hands.
    A piece of folded paper.
    "What is it?"
    "Just...read it when you can.  I'll see you around."  He nodded, with a smile, strode to a nearby car and drove away.
    I was shocked, to say the least.  Exactly what had just happened?
    Slowly, I unfolded the piece of lined paper and read the following:

You may not recognize me because I never made myself known.
I never purposely came on the days you were here.
But with every time I saw you again,
I felt like I should take a chance.
And I have.  Today.
Do you know what a princess is?
If you ever want to be treated like one, here's my number...
  

4.24.2013

The heart can feel many different things, yet all at the same time


'The human heart is a scary part, in fact...'
- Steve Moakler

There's a lot been going on in my life lately.  But through it all, I've been able to keep a positive attitude about everything - not on my own doing, but only because of Jesus.

The other day, I was sitting on my bed, just thinking over current happenings in my life.  With each different scenario I thought of, I would feel a different emotion.  I would be frustrated one time...I would be excited the next...happy one moment, then sad with the other.  It was crazy, how I was feeling.  And I didn't understand how I could still be smiling.

Oh but then the Grace of God enters the picture, yes?  It can't be measured by an emotion or thought or feeling.  It's just there.  God is there.  So close, it's like I can almost touch Him.  Everything happens in life for a reason, amen?  I know that sounds so, so cliche, but really, with a sovereign God ruling over us, I can believe that with ALL my heart.

Through life's twists and turns and ups and downs, God is ever constant, ever faithful.  He understands every little emotion and feeling I have and He puts up with me.  The Creator of this universe, this world, my body - loves me and cares for me enough to not let me hit the end of my rope.  And even if I do, I know Who is holding it.

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'He will guard the feet of His faithful servants...'
- 1 Samuel 2:9a

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4.23.2013

Helpless | a prayer


Dear God,
Not really sure how to start this prayer.
You know all things, so of course you know my heart, and what I'm feeling right now.
A lot is happening in my life.  
And I completely trust You -
I know that everything is happening for a reason.
I don't see that reason, though
And everything just really hurts right now.
Give me strength to get through this.
Grant me wisdom in knowing what to do.
Send me little messages of Your love.
And remind me that You're always near.
Thank You, Abba.
I love you.
In Jesus' Name...Amen.


My beloved daughter,
I understand your emotions and heart
Because I made you.
Every part about you is something that I thought up,
That I created.
I am glad you trust Me.
I have much planned for your life
Some of it may be difficult
But because you have given Me your hand
I promise to walk with you through it all.
I give you My strength
I am blessing you with wisdom
Look around you at every beautiful thing
And see My love for you manifested in it.
I am always near you, daughter.
Never fear the tide.
And when you are too weak to walk,
I will carry you.
I love you, Daughter.
And because I can swear by none higher, I swear by My Self.
All this I promise you, in My Name.

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Scripture that inspired 'the Response':
Psalm 139:13, Jeremiah 29:11-14, Psalm 29:11, James 1:5, Ecclesiastes 3:11, Psalm 23, Psalm 68:19, Hebrews 6:13.

4.16.2013

Chosen Right


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Sometimes
God puts situations in our lives that -
to us 
are perfect.
It's something that we've always wanted
something that we've prayed for,
dreamt about.
But then, the bliss is stopped short.
By what?
A conflict...a disagreement...
And we're asked, by God, to choose.
the dream we'd always wanted
or 
Him?
It's a difficult decision sometimes.
But when we choose rightly, peace will overflow our souls.
I have chosen right.
I have chosen my Jesus.

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4.09.2013

This is Reality


Many of you may already know about my ministry, First Night of Freedom.  It’s a ministry that began in August of 2011 and it serves two purposes - to raise awareness of the reality of human trafficking and to raise supplies for rescue shelters for victims.

I have been wary of writing too much about this subject here on God’s Daughter because I felt that it was too strong of a topic (and can be very graphic) for a personal blog.  But I was praying about it the other day and I sensed God telling me that if I can, I should.  If I have the resources to raise more awareness through my 800+ follower blog, I should use what I have at my fingertips to tell more people about this cold, hard reality.
So I guess this is sort of an introductory/warning post that I will be writing more on this subject.  It’s a big step because it’s such a difference from the encouraging, uplifting, spiritual posts I usually write about.  But fighting against human injustice is part of who I am, as well as being a daughter of the King.  This is a passion of mine, if you would like to call it that.  And God’s Daughter is made up of who Raquel IS because of God’s work IN her.

Today is an awareness day.  All across the globe, people are coming together to be the voice for the 27 million victims of human trafficking.  We are raising awareness and taking a public stand against this injustice by drawing a red X on our hand.  Would you join us?




Learning facts and statistics about human trafficking isn’t an overnight thing.  I’ve been involved in fighting against it for almost two years now and still don’t know half of what I should.  If you would like to learn more about my story and how I started my ministry, feel free to click the First Night of Freedom button that you’ll find at the end of this post.

If you would like to learn more about human trafficking and how you can get involved to fight it, here are some websites that provide quick, easy facts and information to read over.  But I will leave you with a few important basics that every person should know.  You would be surprised at how many of these facts are unknown.  

  • There is an estimated 27 million humans being trafficked today.
  • Globally, the average cost of a slave is $90.
  • The average age of entry into the commercial sex industry in the U.S. is 12-14 years old.
  • 80-90% of sexually exploited people have a history of being sexually abused as a child.
  • Pimps recruit children at malls, bus stops, parties, around schools, through other youth, and online.
  • Between 14,500 to 17,500 people are trafficked into the U.S. per year.
  • Human trafficking is the third largest international crime industry (behind legal drugs and arms trafficking).
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Resources:

God'sDaughter





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‘There may be times when we are powerless to prevent injustice.  But there must never be a time when we fail to protest.’


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