Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The Hand of God, The Feet of Jesus

I'm always inspired and encouraged to be in the presence of people whose life I can clearly see the hand of God over. It's my belief that God's hand is easily seen with the human eye when the individual has fully submitted - out of obedience - to the will of God. It is these people to whom I want to draw nearer to.

I had the blessed privilege of meeting an amazing man of God this weekend while in Atlanta, GA. He is an anointed worship leader, a counselor, a pastor, a healer, a visionary, a son, and a friend among so much more. His faith in the Lord, his escape from the enemy on multiple occasions, and his desire to live a selfless yet focused life deserves a standing ovation at the least. Addison Baker has a gentleness about him, yet has the power of a thousand men to engage in spiritual battle if necessary. He clearly puts on the armour of God every day and speaks in truth and love with every conversation (not to mention has a voice from heaven).

I remember when I first became paralyzed, I heard Louie Giglio speak a sermon at Northpoint Church in Alpharetta, GA in reference to Mark 2. In this chapter, Jesus had arrived in the city of Capernaum where people gathered in a local home to hear him speak the word. A group of men brought their friend, who was paralyzed, to hear Jesus speak, but so many people were in attendance that there was no room left in the room or even outside the door! They concocted a brilliant plan and hoisted him up to the top of the home, dug a hole through the roof, and lowered him down to see Jesus. What a sight that must have been! You see, this man wasn't going to Jesus to be healed, but rather, he simply wanted to be at the feet of Jesus to soak in advice, encouragement, and direction. I remember to this day how powerful that story was in my life at just 3 weeks post injury. I remember thinking "if I could only get to the point where I wasn't going to Jesus with expectations or requests to heal my body and make me walk again, but rather I could get to the point where I went to Him simply because I wanted to be closer to Him just because." Jesus took the opportunity to teach a lesson to a few skeptics in the home where they were gathered, and soon afterwards He did in fact heal the paralyzed man. All glory was given to God after witnessing this miracle!

After reflecting on my time in Atlanta, I believe that Mr. Baker's motivation of life is truly driven by the simple fact that he yearns for the sole opportunity to be closer to Jesus, no matter what the cost. There's no "if you do this, God, I'll do that" or "if I do this for you, you better do that for me" with him. After only a few minutes with this man, it's clear to see the hand of God all over his life.

My desire is that my life will also clearly reflect God's hand, provision, and grace as He has in Mr. Baker's life, no matter whether God decides to make me walk again or not. Sitting at the feet of Jesus is my greatest desire.

For more information on Addison Baker or to schedule an appearance, please visit his website at www.addisonbaker.com.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Photo Shoot for Title

I took my headshot pictures this past weekend with a great photographer at Silverline Photography named Victor Carreon. Take a look below! I'm still waiting on the rest of them to get uploaded to the site, and once I can see them all, I will be choosing a few to reproduce for signings.

I am very proud to represent those with disabilities in the state of California and help bring issues such as inclusion and access into public view. As you can imagine, there are many costs that go with this responsibility including travel expenses, fees, and registration costs (both for the national competition and my spot on the Rose Parade float.) If you would like to help support the work I'm doing around the state of California, please consider making a monetary donation to the Ms. Wheelchair California organization. For more information on where to direct your support, please click here.





Sunday, April 5, 2009

2009 Ms. Wheelchair California


Yesterday, I was crowned the 2009 Ms. Wheelchair California up in Sacramento at the State Capitol! I am so excited about this opportunity to bring awareness to those with disabilities and to educate the public on the importance of inclusion and equal rights for everyone. It's going to be a great year!

You can follow my journey as Ms. Wheelchair California in the year to come by going to the Ms. Wheelchair California blog. I'll continue to keep this one updated, too. There are lots of fun pictures on the site, so be sure to check it out! I will be heading to South Dakota at the end of August to compete at the national level!

Also, check out a video of the crowning which made the evening news in Sacramento by clicking here. Be sure to turn up your speakers! :)

Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Price Is Right!

On Monday, I took the day off of work to entertain out of town guests. One of the things they wanted to do while visiting was to attend a taping of the “Price Is Right” in Los Angeles. After hours of standing in line, we finally made it inside the studio and taping had begun.

I went into the taping convinced that there was no way they’d call someone to Contestant’s Row in a wheelchair. I have been watching the show for many years and have never seen them call someone in a wheelchair. Most people don't want to deal with the logistics and to make sure we are accommodated for, even though it may be something easy and simple. After all, I was just one person out of the crowd of 320 people that they had to worry about that day. Sadly, I feel like I miss out on a lot of opportunities because others don't want to be "bothered."

I was unbelievably shocked that I actually heard them say, “Alyson Roth, come on down! You’re the next contestant on the Price Is Right!” Never in a million years would I have ever guessed they would allow me to participate in the fun along with everyone else that walked into the studio that day.

During the commercial breaks, Drew Carey (the host) asked me where I was from and what I did for a living. I told him all about Free Wheelchair Mission and how we help give wheelchairs to those in developing countries who have no other way to get around. The audience started chanting, "Give her the money!" You see, if a contestant bids the exact amount of the prize they are bidding on, they win $500 cash in addition to winning the prize. Well, hardly anyone gets that, so the audience was yelling for Drew to give it to me! And he did! The only thing he asked was that I give it to Free Wheelchair Mission to use to purchase wheelchairs! Thank you CBS Entertainment and the “Price Is Right” for giving the gift of mobility to 10 people around the world!

The taping of the show will air on Monday, April 13th on CBS. Check your local listings for times. (And don't mind my shocked look when I get called! LOL!)

UPDATE: Click here to check out the show! I am shown at 20 minutes, 40 seconds, so scroll ahead if you don't want to watch all of it!