Raven’s Reach

Raven’s has now soared to 112 countries!

On January 11, 2020 the millions of people around the world met Raven Goff through her mom Tanner’s videos on Facebook. Raven sustained a traumatic brain injury in a terrible accident that she was not able to recover from. Tanner Trujillo, Raven’s mom and her husband Anthony along with Shane Goff, Raven’s dad and his wife Brooke, shared a message of hope and unwavering faith with the world through Raven’s story.

The message is that Raven, a sweet, brave, courageous little girl, whose organs saved seven lives, continues to touch the world and save live with the love of Jesus continues to spread through her story. Tanner and Shane lived their faith out loud for the world to see that God is good no matter what. God is faithful no matter what. Even in the worst of times, God hasn’t failed us.

Through a blog I wrote, I am able to track a small portion of Raven’s reach. I wanted to give an update since my post on January 24th.

Raven’s message how now reach 112 countries. She has flown across 17% of Africa, 31% of Asia, 64% of Europe, 58% of North America, 24% of the Oceania countries, and 57% of South America.

Since my last post, Raven’s Reach has extended in Africa to Gambia, Guinea, and Guinea-Bissau.

Complete list of Countries in Africa that Raven has reached (only pulling from the blog, not Faceboook):

  • Cameroon
  • Gambia
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Kenya
  • Mauritius
  • Namibia
  • South Africa
  • Sudan
  • Zambia

She has reached 11 new countries in Asia, including: Bangladesh, China, Cocos Islands, Iran, Kuwait, Malaysia, North Korea, Pakistan, Palestine, and Syria.

Complete list of Countries in Asia that Raven has reached (only pulling from the blog, not Faceboook):

  • Afghanistan
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Brunei Darussalam
  • Cambodia
  • China
  • Cocos Islands
  • Hong Kong
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iran
  • Israel
  • Japan
  • Kuwait
  • Malaysia
  • North Korea
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Palestine
  • Phillippines
  • Qatar
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Singapore
  • South Korea
  • Syria
  • Taiwan
  • Thailand
  • Turkey
  • United Arab Emirates
  • Viet Nam

She has reached 10 new European countries: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Czechia, Iceland, Isle of Man, Portugal, Romania, Switzerland, and Ukraine.

Complete list of Countries in Europe that Raven has reached (only pulling from the blog, not Faceboook):

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Croatia
  • Czechia
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Georgia
  • German
  • Gibraltar
  • Greece
  • Guernsey
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Isle of Man
  • Italy
  • Jersey
  • Latvia
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Russia
  • Serbia
  • Slovakia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Ukraine
  • United Kingdom

She has flown over seven new countries in North America: Cayman Islands, Dominican Republic, El Savador, Greenland, Nicaragua, Puerto Rico, and Trinidad.

Complete list of Countries in North America that Raven has reached (only pulling from the blog, not Faceboook):

  • Bahamas
  • Bermuda
  • Canada
  • Cayman Islands
  • Costa Rica
  • Cuba
  • Dominican Republic
  • El Savador
  • Greenland
  • Grenada
  • Guadeloupe
  • Guatemala
  • Honduras
  • Jamaica
  • Mexico
  • Nicaragua
  • Panama
  • Puerto Rico
  • Sint Maarten
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Turks and Caicos Islands
  • United States
  • Virgin Islands

She has now extended her reach to Papua New Guinea and the US Outlying Islands.

Complete list of Countries in the Oceania Regions that Raven has reached (only pulling from the blog, not Faceboook):

  • American Samoa
  • Australia
  • Guam
  • New Zealand
  • Papua New Guinea
  • US Outlying Islands

In South America, her reach now includes Uruguay and Venezuela.

Complete list of Countries in South America that Raven has reached (only pulling from the blog, not Faceboook):

  • Argentina
  • Brazil
  • Chile
  • Columbia
  • Ecuador
  • Peru
  • Uruguay
  • Venezuela

If you’d like to add your location to the list, or add a picture to Raven’s gallery, please leave a comment below.

For more on Raven’s story or to connect with other people touched by the #CravinRaven story join the FB group (this is not my group, I am just a member) https://www.facebook.com/groups/849282508826090/

Perfection Is Not a Currency for Love with Andria Flores

The Beauty From Ashes Radio Show is officially here! In episode 1, I was joined by Andria Flores to talk about perfectionism, and her upcoming book “type A, plans B”. Andria is an author, an editor (I’m proud to say she is my editor) and an overcoming type A perfectionist.

The introduction: The Beauty From Ashes Radio Show airs live on the JoCo Community Radio Show Facebook page (click on the link to watch the show) and can also be heard on the Tune-In app every Tuesday form 6PM – 7PM. I started the show because I believe we all have a story to tell in our own way. The show was designed to facilitate conversations with warriors, overcomers, survivors and thrivers, to spotlight their messages of hope, healing and victory.

In the What Are You Reading segment, we highlighted what Andria and I were both reading. Currently, for me, it’s the The Boundaries book by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend. I recently started this book, that is totally stepping on my toes! It starts with a description of what your life would be like without boundaries, and then, it describes my whole life.

Andria reads for a living as an editor, so she doesn’t always get to read for fun as much as she would love, but she has recently been moved by the poem She Let Go by Rev. Safire Rose, which has a powerful message about perfectionism from the point of view of people pleasing.

Andria’s powerful message on perfectionism:

Andria has struggled with perfectionism since childhood. From an early age, she connected love and approval with performing well. Her adoption of perfectionism stemmed from the belief that if she did well at something then she was worthy of love, but if she failed at something, that indicated that she was unworthy of love and acceptance. She formed a lifelong habit of striving for perfection in every relationship in her life. Until she realized that the very thing she thought would earn hear love, was the exact same thing that was preventing her from having deep connections with the people around her.

As an adult, I realized that the thing I wanted most, to connect with other people, was torn apart by perfectionism.” -Andria

Perfectionism can work for a while, it can even drive success, it just isn’t sustainable. Andria went on to share a very vulnerable message about how perfectionism impacted her as a mother. Andria has always been a proud mother and motherhood was the one thing she had dreamed of being her whole life. Take a look at the AHA! moment at 43:04 in the video that lead to her realizing that perfectionism wasn’t an effective parenting technique, it was actually going to break the spirit of her sweet little girl. Andria sought to find an answer through prayer, studying, and life transformation.

“When it all began to unravel for me, I realized pretty quickly, that I even had a perfectionist relationship with God.” – Andria

After the collapse of the white picket fence life, Andria maintained a white picket fence image for several more years. Even her mom, the closest person to her, didn’t know what was happening. A passing comment that Andria’s mom made about her being “one hell of an actress” led to a realization that even though she acted out of devotion to her marriage, family and faith, she had been playing the role of supporting actress in her own life.

“It never occurred to me that working so damn hard to be perfect, had actually made me plastic.” – Andria

Andria went through a journey of self discovery, traveling through the mess that brokenness and shattered dreams had left behind. As a natural planner caught completely off guard by sudden chaos, Andria found that you have to walk through the ugly cries, snotty noses, and a few cuss words to go through establishing new boundaries and figuring out who she was without the burden of expectations. She finally opened up to God in the realest way. She poured her heart out to Him, and unburdened all of the things she has held inside for so long.

“I knew that God was saying finally. I have been waiting so long for you to just be real with me.”

God continued to heal Andria as she found new ways to be honest with herself and those close to her. She gain the strength and courage to not only overcome perfectionist thing, but to open her life of in vulnerability to be be truly loved for the amazing person that she is.

At the end of her writing, Andria had an unexpected revelation… that she actually didn’t need a plan B at all. Jeremiah 29:11 said that God knows the plans He has for us, and she just needed to be open and curious about what those were.

ACTION ITEMS FOR FELLOW PERFECTIONIST

  1. Get honest with yourself and acknowledge that you are a perfectionist, and the ways that might fail you (it’s not all bad)
  2. Don’t take yourself so seriously
  3. Breathe, take a minute to inhale and exhale before making your next decision

For a sneak peak at Andria’s upcoming book release, download a FREE e-book “type A Parenting” on Andria’s website www.andriaflores.com

Last Week I Watched a Family Do the Unthinkable

Burleson seems to have grown in leaps and bounds since we first moved here when I was six years old. I remember that year so clearly, because it was the year that I had Karen Sanders as my first grade teacher. It was the year that I met classmates that I am still friends with today. In the last thirty-something years, the town has changed. Restaurant chains have moved in, there are plenty of places to shop besides Walmart now. There are new churches, and double the number of schools as when I went to Nola Dunn. I-35 traffic is infuriating and speaks to the growth in the community. However, this town has never felt smaller and more close knit than last week when the whole town rallied together to pray for Raven Goff and support Tanner Trujillo and Shane Goff as they made the ultimate sacrifice. They are a huge part of the community and while I didn’t know them, I know their church, I know their friends, I know their work colleagues and workout partners, I used to work at the school Raven attended… it was all so close to home. Literally millions of people all over the world have been touched by this story and they all have a piece of our little town with them now.

The Bible says it rains on the just and the unjust. I remember when Stephen Curtis Chapman spoke about losing his daughter and he said you start to buy into the hype that this couldn’t happen to you, you have done so much for God’s kingdom. Then he said, “But why not me? I am human and live in the same fallen world as everyone else.” I thought that was the coolest perspective, filled strength and humility.

With similar strength, the world watched Tanner’s updates from her daughter’s hospital room. After a tragic accident, Raven was declared brain dead. Tanner and Shane made the impossible decision to donate her organs. They chose to donate every organ that could be used. In a video I will never forget, Tanner sat next to her six year old little girl who was on life support. With a complete blanket of peace, Tanner shared an update on the organ donation. In this tremendous sacrifice, keeping Raven on life support for two more days after her official time of death as they waited for the organ matches to align for one perfect surgery where Ravens organs would be harvested and sent to save the lives of other children.

In that moment, when most of us would have completely shattered, Tanner said something that will stick with me forever. She said, “God is so good. He is so much sweeter than I could ever be bitter.”

There were other images throughout the story that solidified God at work. From Shane’s broken cry of worship after losing his beautiful daughter, to Tanner’s perfect peace and composure that God promised us all. To Tanner’s biological father and bonus father talking about not using the word “step” and how they are a united family. We have learned so much from this journey.

Lord, may I trust you, as much as Tanner. May I worship you with that kind of unconditional love that Shane displayed. May I always see your beauty even in my own tragedies. This, surely is your most beautiful creation from the ashes.

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