Pat Layton Pat Layton Pat Layton: Sweet Tea for Surrendered Sisters
Dancing like David!!
My heart is filled with thanksgiving and a song that will not leave my head or heart!!

I am thankful for those of you who prayed for this weekend...

For hundreds of women who wanted nothing more than to meet with God....

For the amazing leaders at Harvest Fellowship Church in San Antonio, Texas....even the one who honored me with an unforgettable gift that will definitely NOT be RE know who you are MOLLY!

For the worship team from Community Bible Church in San Antonio, Texas who led us straight into the singing embrace of girls (and guys) ROCK!!

For men who took care of homes, children and errands while their wives danced with God...

and For men who cover their eyes when asked.....

For the wonderful retreat facility provided by the team at Camp Buckner....

For my Mom who blessed me with her companionship and her love, again.....

For my sweet friend Jayne who not only covers me with prayer but also provided our comic relief. 

It was at my expense, as you can see, but hysterical none the less.....

Does this make me look fat????

Check out those earrings! To order go to www....Just Kidding, these are not able to be duplicated!

I am especially thankful for the many things that God provided that ONLY HE CAN......

Beautiful weather!

Texas Bluebonnets!

Spring Green Mountains!

The music of heaven!!

His presence and His anointing!!!!

We studied, we worshipped, we played, we laughed, we cried, we prayed, 

"When the Spirit of the Lord comes upon you....You will Dance like David danced, sing like David, pray like David....Dance like David Danced!!!"

Give a shout girls!

Dancing to the Tunes of God!!!
My suitcases are not packed. 

I just UNPACKED them on Monday!! Now they are sitting like hungry baby birds with mouths open and ready to be filled again and fill them I will. 

Right now, in just a minute!!

I am heading off to Texas later today to speak at a retreat for the women of Harvest Fellowship Church in San Antonio, Texas.

I LOVE the theme of this conference. It is "Grace Dance". It is based upon Zephaniah 3:17

He takes great DELIGHT IN YOU as HE QUIETS YOU with His Love as HE REJOICES over you with signing!!

I have been studying that verse for months yet every time I read it I still get chill bumps. 

Father God, I pray for whoever might be reading these words right now. I ask you God, to stir up their hearts with your great, great love. I thank you Lord for your particular attention to them right this moment, their heart, their passion, their desires, their pain, their personal needs, their concerns, their joy, their dreams. Thank you God for your Word, for your promises, for your song!!

God loves you!!!

Can you hear Him singing!!!???

The God of the Universe. The creator of Heaven and Earth, the Sun, the Moon and the Stars...Delights in you?? 
Desires to QUIET you with His love, 
and Rejoices over you with Singing!!

Oh my, I think I want to spend the weekend wallowing in those words!!! 
My Mom is joining me, how cool is THAT!!!

Gotta go pack now. 

I will let you know on Monday what God sang for this particular group of daughters!!
I also have a COOL Giveaway coming!!

p.s. In addition to my desire to serve God and the women at this weekend event, I also have a couple of very big ministry things going on, waiting for God's plan of action. 
As you read this today, I would be honored and grateful for YOUR prayers over me!!

My single desire is to please and honor God with every moment and every breath I am given.

She Speaks! She Leads!!
I simply HAD to get in on the contest offered by one of my two favorite woman's ministry teams of all time. 

I am not jumping on this because my going or not going to "She Speaks" is at stake. I have already committed to be there and cannot wait. As a matter of fact, I love this event so much that I have registered 2 of my favorite girls to join me!

I attended "She Speaks" last year with the main mission of learning more about Blogging. As an Author and Speaker I had been encouraged to start a Blog so that I might stay more connected with the women that I am blessed to meet all over the Nation as well as practice my writing skills on a daily basis (hehe....check out the date of my last post...I have NOT mastered the daily skill yet!). 

You see however, that I did start, not one but 2, Blogs. (I guess you know that since you are on it right now! YEH, Sweet Tea!) The other one is designed to support my Post Abortion Healing program "Surrendering the Secret".  The She Speaks team was wonderful and I met a whole bunch of new blogging friends who were ready and willing to pass on all the knowledge I could take home.  I even met my wonderful "Sweet Tea" Blog designer, Dawn, at Barefoot Blogs, while I was there!!

I have attended writing and speaking conferences for over 20 years. They each have had some good things to offer and have helped me to walk the ministry walk God has had me on. I am grateful for all that I have learned and the many mentors I have had along the way.

However, let me make one statement perfectly clear....NONE....hear again...NONE...have compared to "She Speaks" in terms of overall program organization, the variety of training opportunities available and the skill and expertise of the teaching team. 

But the BEST thing about "She Speaks" is the Proverbs 31 Ministry Team. Lysa and her ministry team bubble over with kindness, support and encouragement for all who attend. The keynotes each left me ready to take on the world for Jesus!

The P31 Team is filled with some of the most precious women I have had the pleasure of meeting. Gentle Giants in the world of Christian teaching and writing, they were all easily identified in their cute matching T-Shirts. They were determined here would be no mistake in the fact that they were there for no other reason than to SERVE those who attend. Every where I turned someone was offering to help me, to answer a question or to just say hello and make me feel welcomed. 

The workshops were incredible and filled to the brim with current information and education. I came for one purpose but got so much more than I expected and met friends that I truly feel have become sisters!

If you are a woman who feels that God has called you to Speak or Write for His Kingdom Glory, this is the conference for you!

Since I am on a conference praise roll here, if you have never attended Lifeway's Woman's Ministry Forum put that one on your calendar as well. 

This is a Leadership conference for women in ministry that is sponsored by the Lifeway Woman's Ministry Team.  Again, I have attended leadership training all over the Nation throughout my ministry journey. The first time I attended the Forum as a newly published Lifeway Author, I was blown away in a similar fashion to "She Speaks". The Forum is led by Chris Adam's, the Woman's Ministry Director for Lifeway.

If you are serious about Woman's Ministry both of these events are worthy of your consideration. You will be blessed I promise!! 

Mulching Mamma Maniac!
I am sitting for a few minutes with a cup of coffee looking at the birds flock to my freshly mulched and manicured back yard lawn.

It has been a "BLAST" of a weekend in more ways than one.

As I shared in my last post, I decided last week that my schedule of travel over the next few weekends was going to make it very challenging to get my Spring yard refreshing done before the weather turned too hot for me to tolerate! Many of you have emailed and blog commented since then,  about your snow, rain and generally yucky weather. 

I am so sorry about your luck, but, hope you can live vicariously through my Florida weather for a few sunny moments.

My makeover has taken 3 days but actually only about 12 total hours, including shopping!

It started on Friday afternoon when I picked my oldest G-girl up from school and took her with me to the garden shop after a quick stop at Mickey D's.

We bought too many flowers then headed home to get to work, THIS was waiting!

We "worked" a little however we had a few-- swim, Popsicle, potty and "I want to plant something G", diversions. All well worth the delays!

This is my G-Flower!

We worked for about 4 hours before I had to get dressed for a wonderful weekend event with Extraordinary Women at Idlewild Baptist Church in Tampa. The Woman;s Ministry team kindly invited "Surrendering the Secret" and "A Woman's Place Ministries/Life Impact Network" to have a ministry display.

It was AWESOME!!! Nothing like stopping for a God break with a few sisters!! 

The team of speakers and the worship team brought it!!! God's Word was pouring out like rain on a dry ground. Us girls were hungry and did not leave disappointed. I especially enjoyed a visit with my sweet friend Angela Thomas. She physically and spiritually "SHINED" during her session as she encouraged us to Surrender All for our Worthy and Able God! Angela truly delivers God's redeeming love at a sweeter and deeper level every time I have the privilege of hearing her.

After I returned home on Saturday afternoon I got right to work and worked until 9 pm!!

One of my NEW adventures was a special mulch I had ordered at the advice of one of my dearest and oldest friends (time--not age), gardener extraordinaire, who shares her dream garden at Hoe and Shovel. The problem is that Meems does this stuff full time and I do this 2 or 3 times a year. Regardless of the "wonders" of this mulch.....wonder woman I am not. 
I thought it was WAY too Messy and WAY too Much WORK!! 

It comes in "blocks" that have to be soaked in water before spreading. I had NO IDEA!! I had mulch in my ears, nose and hair---not to mention my G-Girls mess!

It does look pretty though.

At the end of the day, it was all worth it!

After my mulching meltdown, I began to pop some plants into pots.

Sunny Daisy's by the goldfish pond....

A few hanging pots in the front.....

some pool color...........

a few of the broken pieces even made it into my house to perk up the inside!

 The Family Room

The Living/Dining Room

Of course, after all the fun, I ended the day with washing down decks and picking up trash.

I fell into bed at midnight, my feet and legs hurt so badly I was moaning!

However, I woke up to this!!!

And This.....

And this!!!

View from the kitchen table! This is my posting position complete with a cup of hot coffee, tinkling wind chimes and cardinals who have told me that LOVE THE NEW SPRING GARDEN!!

PS....The furniture is courtesy of my number one son (age!) . You can check out his amazing talent at Remodeling Guy!!

Enjoy Winter Sisters!!

This is the Day that the Lord has Made!!!!
Today, I have a Mission!!

A Flower Power Mission!

My name is Pat and I am a gardener want-to-be. 

I love gardening and having a beautiful yard. the bad news is, I just do not have time in my life to KEEP one that way. 

God has me doing lots of other things right now. Great things, Fun things, Amazing things, but hanging in the garden is not one of them! So, instead of regular maintenance that KEEPS things beautiful, I improvise! A couple of times a year I update all of my decorative pots, pull out some things I have let die a painful-ugly death, throw some mulch around to cover the dirt and make things LOOK cleaner and pop in some new garden plants.

Today is one of those days!

This is what I am starting with!!

I am planting some Morning Glory along a new fence that we put up with our neighbors a few months ago. It is right next to my pool and looks a little bare. I have tries having lots of different pretty things there but they get G-Kids overrun with pool days. Hopefully these fence huggers will survive!

Something new I found in Punta Gorda last weekend. Beautiful, tropical and full of blooms and buds.
We shall see!

30 Bags of Mulch!!

"Honeyyy......where are you????.......

This is what it looked like Last Spring!

So here I go, off to Lowes!! I will let you see the results.

I truly believe that my Mansion in Heaven will have a garden like THIS!!!

or this.....

Now where in the world is that shovel!!???

God is Good--All the Time!
The Goodness of God has been fixed on my heart for the past few days.

My desire is to always be thanking God and praising Him for who He is, for the blessings that He pours out, for His love and for His Grace!!
But lately, I have had such a sense of His GOODNESS.

Tough, tough times seems to be BIGGER than normal around us these days. They are certainly on the lips of most people, in the headlines and on the news every day. It is easy to get focused on things that seem so big, so bad so hopeless. 

I have many situations very close to my own life with friends and family that are extremely difficult and seem to be pulling faith strings tighter than ever.

Just a few of the ones on my prayer list right now are:

A dear friend who is on an airplane today headed towards having a mastectomy. Her 3 children remain at home wondering what is going to happen to their Mom.

Another friend whose husband just lost his job after having just been through 2 years of unemployment. Just last year they sold everything they had, left their children and grandchildren in another state to move to Florida for work. His employers walked in last week and said--"see you later".

Another friend is lying in a hospital here in Tampa, away from her home, friends and family in another state, after having to have emergency surgery while here on a weekend getaway.

I am certain that your list is equally serious. I have been reading about them.

In spite of that, in spite of those circumstances, my heart is filled with the knowledge of the GOODNESS of God. My heart is fixed on who He is and What He promises.

The Lord is my Shepherd*

He is Adonai Yahweh:Sovereign Lord

I Shall not want*

He is El Hakkadosh: Holy God

He makes me to lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters, He restores my soul*

He is Melek Ha-Goyim: King of the Nations

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil for you are with me, your rod and your staff comfort me. *

He is El Gadol Ve-Nora: Great and Awesome God

You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil and my cup runneth over. *

He is Avi: Father

Surely GOODNESS and MERCY shall follow me all the days of my life *

He is Yahweh Raah: the Lord my shepherd

And I Will dwell in the house of the Lord forever* Psalm 23

If you could use a reminder of who God is, I recommend Mary Kassian's "Knowing God by Name" Bible Study. 
It will get your GOODNESS juices flowing!!

Fresh Word Friday
My word for today is Blessings!!
Unexpected ones!!

I am spending some very precious time with my daughter. She needed some "Mom" time and I would have gone anywhere in the world to be with her. 

Rain, shine, snow, sleet, hail.

As God would have it...

We are sharing some bonding time in, well, paradise.

She is taking a final exam, I am sitting at Starbucks, in the middle of City Place in West Palm Beach.

It is about 75 degrees, the breeze is blowing, the sun is shinning, the pigeons are entertaining the tourist. One old man did just try to pick me up as his "Internet date" but other than that, it is completely beautiful and relaxing. Sooooo...not what i had expected. However, God in His AMAZING Grace and Mercy, called me here for the weekend for a Blessing!

Maybe it was me who needed some "Abba" time even more than she needed the "Mom" time.
Ya Think???!!!!

Deuteronomy 28:2
All these blessings will come upon you and accompany you if you obey the LORD your God:

We Fix our Gaze!

A daughter recently killed in a car accident.
A Husband who just left his home and children for a woman he met on the Internet.
A golden years woman who had to move in with her daughter and son after loosing her job and becoming homeless.
A daughter who had to move into her parents home with her husband and children after he lost his job.
A Mom who son is a drug addict and has wandered from God after being raised in a strong Christian home.
A woman who was just diagnosed with breast cancer.
A woman who surrendered her 3 aborted children to God for the first time.

Those were just a few of the heartbreaking burdens that were brought into Crossroads Church for their annual woman's conference last weekend.

God was not surprised and He moved in a mighty way. 
He healed. He restored. He comforted.He answered. He directed. He blessed us.

The leading scripture for our weekend was 2 Corinthians 4:17,18

17 For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever! 18 So we don’t look at the troubles we can see now; rather, we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.

So, that is just what we did...WE FIXED OUR GAZE!!!

We talked about the truth that God wants to Bless us, in spite of our circumstances and "present troubles". In Fact, he wants to Bless us right smack in the middle of them. 

We talked about the need to be in POSITION for Blessing
to understand God's PROMISE of Blessing and the immeasurable more than we can hope or ask for experience of being in the PLACE of Blessing.

We discovered that Blessings ALWAYS requires FOCUS!! Focus on God and who He is.

California was full of Blessing.

I am happy to be home but my heart is still warm and full towards my California Sisters.
It was my honor to be in their midst and my joy to continue our Eternal journey together!!

I love you ladies!! Thank you for sharing this amazing time with me!


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