time is flying by too fast

Goodness, I can't believe I'll be leaving on thursday to take zoe down to texas to stay with my parents while we pack and drive a moving truck down. (zoe doesn't travel well as far as keeping formula down so I thought it best to fly her down first since the drive is so long) 

SO much has been going on. We got to say hello and goodbye to so many people this weekend and even met people I didn't even know but after just a few minutes I felt totally at home around. 
We will miss you all so much. But I hope to still keep everyone up to date on this blog! 

April is settling into a restoration house that a lady runs in north raleigh. It has it's difficulties and it is still new to her so she's liking some things and frustrated by a lot of other things. She went to church on sunday and told me all about the skit that someone did about a miracle in the bible. (skits are definitely a memorable way to share the words of the bible!) She met lots of people and remembered so many of your names as she was telling me about you all. Thank you for loving on her this week. From the family get together, church and the going away party she was well loved on and treated so kindly.  

She was the April that I've had the priviledge of getting to know this weekend. I was telling someone that there are two April's in her. One is so sweet and even open to others. She is relaxed and remembers things about others. She has manners and seems to be very grateful for whatever is done for her. Then there is the other April, I call this the april off the streets. She's guarded, defensive, thinks others are out to get her or flirt with her or take her money. She is rude and demanding. She is impatient and unreasonable. And she doesn't focus on you but is always scanning the scene around her I'm not really sure what for. *maybe habit off the street? 
Anyway, I know that it's not about good april vs. bad april. I just can tell the difference when she lets her guard down and when she has it up. And I keep asking God to soften her heart and allow those walls to come down that separate her from Him.  

Some things I've learned though in being her friend and being one that wants to show Christ to her: 

  • Be consistent. If I say I'm going to do something she'll hold me to it. She's used to being let down or not thought of so I think she expects it not to happen but hopes I'll come through. This has been big for me because I'm not typically your make it happen girl, I am forgetful and so many things I want to do don't get done. But I'm having to really stretch in that area so that I'm faithful to my word with her as not to paint a bad picture of God's faithfulness. 
  • Allow her to be her and not the person I want her to be. She's not a christian. She's not even nessicarily quitting drugs and her previous life because she thinks it was wrong. So I have to understand that if she wants to date a guy who is probably not the best for her then I can't say she can't date him. I can encourage her to be careful. But otherwise we've had to just show kindness to this guy as well. I also keep having to remind her, as she talks trash about someone else's bad habits (like stealing, she thinks it's worse to steal than do what she's done) that she's not any better. I told her that whereas she struggles with one thing someone else may battle another but we're all sinners and do terrible things.  
  • Keep reminding her that motherhood is a sacrifice. Sure the streets weren't ideal for her but at least she had her freedom and could go wherever whenever. (we all know she was in bondage and wasn't free but it didn't feel that way to her) SO now that she's having to stay in one place, be totally dependent upon others, and have to worry about where future income will come from, she gets frustrated and feels trapped. I have to keep reminding her that in motherhood we have to do things that we may not want to for the sake of our children and their future.   
  • I'm learning that it's a lot more challenging to have nothing (no drivers license, no car, no job, no money) and live outside the downtown area. But thanks to so many of you who are stepping up to help in whatever way God has gifted you in she is getting her needs met slowly but surely. But I guess I'm saying I know maybe why downtowns attract some of the most needy.  And why it's tempting for her to want to go back down here. 
  • I've learned that I have to be very clear with what I have to offer her. i.e. If I have to be home by noon then I need to tell her that I can take her to this place and this place but no matter what I have head home at this time. Or I will be very clear with what I can help with, April I can't buy you groceries right now but I'm prepared to get us lunch today.  I don't ever give her money!! This has been our rule of thumb since moving downtown for anyone. I think she needs money but I want to help her choose wisely what she needs to spend it on. i.e walmart gift cards vs. cash. phone card vs. cash, etc. I want her to feel loved but also to feel the weight of not having money to just use on anything she wants. And I think it keeps her from having to be afraid someone might steal it from her.  
  • Here are some needs that she has currently that maybe some of you might be able to help with: Please email me if you feel able to help in any way!    caseylynn_78@yahoo.com
  • She needs clothes size 14 womens.  
  • She needs a job that she can work at several days a week. (she doesn't have a highschool dimploma, but she's great at doing tasks and serving people and cleaning up and even great with kids. *I'm hoping she'll get a job taking care of tables somewhere like golden corral  
  • She needs rent paid for. Where she is staying has a cost, not much but still a cost. At the end of this week unless she has a job she won't have any way to pay her rent. She is trying to get a job but we know how that can be in these times. And really until someone gives her a chance to prove herself, she may find it difficult to get a job.      
  • She needs rides to church (Open Door Baptist) on sunday morning and sunday night 
  • She needs Jesus: Please People of God pray that God opens her heart and brings her to repentance and to see her need of Him. I know God can save her and I don't want to be guilty of thinking He won't or can't. Seriously, we can do all the above and without a relationship with Her Creator all of it doesn't help her ultimately. But I do think that meeting needs is a great way of showing the mercy that God offers to a lost soul. Join me in Praying diligently for her heart. I know that's where true hope for her future and healing from her past will come from. 
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