June 5, 2015

Lisa Newburn

As a little girl I always knew I loved Jesus – I think I just had that “simple faith” that He was real and He loved me.  I’m sure it had a lot to do with my sweet grandmother’s prayers.  She prayed for all of her grandchildren by name every day (and I’m sure those prayers are still bearing fruit today – thank you Mam-maw!)  My four sisters and I were raised in the Baptist church.  My paternal grandfather was a Baptist minister and, although he died before I was born, there was no doubt where my Daddy would take us to church!  I have a lot of sweet memories thinking back on all the faithful SS teachers, Vacation Bible School teachers and other sweet believers who influenced my faith walk, including my parents and grandparents.  Unfortunately, there was a little Southern Baptist guilt mixed in with my early faith walk – for the longest I thought that God was waiting to punish me if I did anything wrong…I didn’t understand His amazing grace and mercy until later in my walk!   There is no doubt I felt the Holy Spirit’s wooing as a child and made the decision to invite Jesus into my heart at the age of 10.  I’ll never forget walking down to the front of the church with my childhood friend to profess my faith and then soon after receiving my baptism.  I truly felt washed “as white as snow” – a new creation in Christ Jesus!   Later, in my early teens, I attended a James Robison crusade and realized there was definitely “more” to this relationship with Jesus.  I also felt the strong presence of the Lord at a youth conference I attended in high school and remember reading my Bible, and for the first time, the words started leaping off the page into my heart. I was ecstatic!  Jesus was speaking to me!  There was much more to this Bible than just words on a page – there was relationship with Jesus!

I wish I could say I continued faithfully in my relationship with the Lord from that point on, but I didn’t.  The Lord protected me during some very dark times of foolish choices (remember my grandmother’s prayers?).   I was a prodigal daughter and He brought me back into a new place in Him that still amazes me when I think about how much He redeemed and restored in my life.   I am now married to Brad, a devoted and loving husband of 26 years and we are both growing in our faith walk.  When I think back on all the Lord has brought us through, I stand in awe!  He has healed our marriage, delivered me from alcohol dependency, fear of man, rejection and so much more. He also healed Brad of cancer, opened his eyes to His Word and a relationship with Him and Brad is now a man of prayer and loves the Lord.   He is my morning “DJ” and plays worship music for me as I’m getting ready in the morning!

I am so thankful that along the way the Lord brought me forward and helped me step out in faith into various ministries that helped me grow up in Him!  From teaching 3 year olds to adult women’s SS class, leading a Christian-based aerobics class for over 15 years, and serving on a praise and worship team and in prayer ministries – it’s been an amazing journey!  The Lord confirmed my calling as a praise and worship leader through a divine appointment that occurred when talking to our anointed and amazingly prophetic leader of Refreshing Winds Ministries, Betty Wenzel!  The Lord has taught me so much through Betty and the other beautiful ladies in RWM – I am so thankful for them.  They have been and continue to be a huge influence in guiding me to a deeper level of ministry and have come alongside me and encouraged me in more ways than I can ever name.

In 2005, The Beacons were formed and what a blessing it has been to be a part of such an anointed and gifted group of ladies – not only are they skilled musicians, songwriters and  walking in their own amazing giftings and callings, but they are also some of my dearest friends!  I am thankful for the songs the Lord has gifted us “Beacon Babes” with and truly know they came from His throne room.

In addition to the Beacons, I’m blessed to lead a small group called “The God Squad”.  We are a tactical group of prayer warriors who love to enter into the Lord’s presence with thanksgiving and praise, study His Word and intercede and minister to others who need His love and grace.  These ladies have changed my life and I am ever grateful for their love and amazing dedication to the Lord.

It is my desire to live a lifestyle of worship and through the gifts the Lord has given me to minister the grace and truth of Jesus Christ to a hurting world – to be an instrument God uses to heal and set the captives free.  I can’t wait to see what is next on this amazing adventure with Him!