Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Testimony Tuesday: Devon

Yay! It's Tuesday... Today's story comes from my friend, Devon.  We have known each other the longest out of my closest friends - I am thankful for her and all that she has been through with me.  That could totally be about 3 blog entries in and of themselves.  But she's rolled with it all.  I posted this picture below because this is literally where we met.  I had heard soooo much about this "Devon"; and though I was super active in BCM, I had never met her.  I rolled into Bay St. Louis for a mission trip at about 1:00 AM (everyone else was already there).  The next morning ... this is what we were doing when we met - gutting a house!  But I say we clean up pretty nicely... See below.  

Meet Devon!

Well everyone I am Devon Carsten. For the last few weeks I have been excited about my turn on Erin’s blog. Erin and I went to college together and became very good friends.  Also Erin was my very first roommate.  I am so glad that God has given me a friend like Erin to share life with.  

Ok, so we have made it to the holiday season.   For some of us this is a good thing and for others maybe not so good.
Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song.  For the LORD is the great God, the great King above all gods. Psalm 95: 2-3.

Thanksgiving is Thursday, and I want to share a few things that I am very thankful for this year. I also hope that this encourages you to think about the things that you are thankful for in your own life.

 For the LORD is a great God. I want to say I am thankful for a Lord that saves. What would my life be like if I had not asked God to be a part of it -very different.  I am most thankful for God sending Jesus to die for me. It is very hard for me to wrap my mind around the fact that God loved me that much.
This year God has taught me a lot about prayer. God has taught me that some prayers are answered and some are not.  It is not that they aren’t answered, but they are just answered with a no. I had to learn this year that no is ok too.

See, I haven’t always been Devon Carsten, I used to be Devon Coward.  Four month ago I married Mr. Casey Carsten. Now if you would have asked me last thanksgiving if I would be married this thanksgiving I would have said NO!!!
 I had a boyfriend in high school that I loved.  If you would have asked me if he was the one, I would have said yes.  We dated 4 or 5 years and went to church together as children. In my mind that was it. We both graduated from high school and went different ways. That was the end of that. But I do believe that God allows people to come into your life for reason. What I learned from the high school guy was the first taste of love and heartbreak. But you know that is how we are to God when we don’t let him be a part of our life.

In college I was trying to figure out what God wanted me to do with my life. I was very lucky that I found some friends that would be friends of mine for life. Also God showed me the calling on my life which is now my job. I am a photographer. I get to share in people’s happy times.  I love my job I am so thankful God gave me a talent.
In college I met a guy and went out on a few dates, but it didn’t go anywhere. This guy loved Jesus but just because the two of you love Jesus doesn’t mean that it will work.
I graduated college and started trying to figure out what God wanted me to do. I love how God leads you when you let him. I knew I wanted to open my own business.  To do this, I had to work another job to get started with my photography business. I ended up working at a school in a 4K classroom where I got to work with Sissy. The guy from college had come back into the picture. I was there when he wanted me to be, but he never wanted to be anything more than just friends. The sad thing is that I let this go way too long. I would pray about it and nothing but no, no, no!, and I still just keep right on wanting a yes. Then I couldn’t see it as sin. I wanted something that wasn’t what God wanted for me, and I keep right on. But that is how sin is in our life. Sometimes we let it stay way too long. This went on almost two and half years.

Sometimes the right answer is right there in front of your face, but you can’t see it. My co-worker and friend Sissy was getting married, and she asked me to take her wedding pictures.  The day I pulled up in the yard to take Sissy’s wedding pictures, Casey was outside putting balloons on the mailbox. I saw him and it was just like my God said he is the one. I know that all of that doesn’t sound real. With Casey, God has taught me “Yes, this is what my love looks like.”  So August 3rd of the next year Casey and I got married. Sometimes prayers are answered with a no, and sometimes they are yes. I am thankful for a marriage that is God centered. I am so thankful for our first Thanksgiving together.

 Devon currently lives in Coward, SC.  She is married to Casey and has become quite the duck hunter as a result.  She is doing what she loves, and I am so thankful to see how God has answered her prayers and allowed her to develop her talent in this way.  We share a mutual obsession for Red Bone Alley, and I can't wait to eat dinner with her there tonight!

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