Another Tuesday

Blessings! It’s that time again! 

Another Tuesday with Jesus.  

Whew Chile. This Tuesday has taken me on a roller coaster and it’s only 2pm. God has never been more real than he has in this moment. I feel a great shift. Anyways that’s a story for another day. I started that journey today in the Book of Isaiah. Like Psalms , Isaiah is one of the books that I’ve never read in its I’m entirety. I can quote you a few scriptures, but i can’t give you a full run down of what God told Isaiah. My focus over the next month is diving deep.

My original message from today (written yesterday btw) was: There’s so much to learn from the life of the prophet and prophecies. I’m reminded of the relationship between Elijah and Elisha. Mentors are meant to do two things: teach you what to do and what not to do.

As I dive into this book I’m wondering:

  • Who has been influencing your life and is it for the better?
  • What kind of word have they spoken over your life?
  • Do you love them enough to head criticism and correction or does it fall on deaf ears?

What I Actually Gleaned on Today 🔥:

“I will repay you for the years that the swarming locust ate, the young locust, the destroying locust, and the devouring locust — My great army that I sent against you.”‭‭ Joel‬ ‭2:25‬ ‭HCSB‬‬

This word had come to me 3 times before 8:45am.  Once in a podcast, meditation, and a periscope. God has not forgotten you. God does not care about the shame you’re carrying around on your back. Be courageous and trade that yoke with Him. Your shame has already been covered. Why are you still holding onto it. You wouldn’t pay a store twice for the one tube of deodorant, why are you paying for a sin that’s been covered? FOR FREE at that! You maybe be skeptical but what do you have to lose? You’ve given people your all by not God? Why? He’s not a man that shall lie. He is a mighty, gracious , redeeming God. He has plans for you. Greater than your mind could imagine if you let go of what “they” may think or say about you.

Side Take Away: I had a plan of reflection and the Holy Spirit wrecked it...wrecked me. I’m perfectly fine with that. Don’t get so caught up in your plans that you miss God giving you directions. He’s always there knowing what your heart needs. Also knowing who needs to hear from your heart. Everything ain’t about you. 

The Flare Up

For the last two days I’ve been fighting an allergy flare up that’s left my whole face swollen,red, and lumpy. It’s rather embarrassing. I haven’t had a flare up this bad in 3 years. Imagine going around with your face looking like Martin when he left that boxing match all because you stopped doing what you knew you needed to do. (For you this probably doesnt apply to your face, but apply it to that area of life you need to)

I had my routine down: reduce stress, water., oiil, heavy moisturizer, aquaphor. My skin routine was under control. I’ve spent the majority of my life dealing with severe eczema. Imagine me, 27, living life thinking the worst is behind you. Mind you this monster hasnt been this bad since maybe 21. I’ve been doing pretty well for myself being slack on my routine. The thing is you can hide your arms and legs, but you can’t hide that face. Also, did I mention my sister is in town visiting! it’s thrown a wrench in my plans as I’ve been heavily medicated most of the time. HA! To think I had the never to make plans (When am I going to learn ?!?!?!) . 

What caused this rash surprise ? I don’t know. Could’ve been outside, a facial,food, or a combination of the above, I don’t know. That’s not what I care about…my focal point is this itching.  Its like a never ending itching fire. As I lay with a leftover Hello Fresh ice pack on my face, i prayed one of those God please make my face stop itching. Please help. Then I realized there are people who can’t feel or live with life long scars and I’m upset over what other people may ask about this thing that is (was) my normal. 

As I write this post I’m massaging vitamin e oil and hydrocortisone onto my face.  Things could be worse. My eyes could be swollen shut. I could be laid up in the emergency room. Both of which have happened before, and on multiple occasions.

The Revelation of it all (outside of me venting at my Ted Talk): We leave what’s tried and true because we think we don’t need it anymore. This my friends is how we get caught up. Don’t be me. Don’t get caught up. Don’t for one second think that what you’ve been doing is mundane and useless. Theres a lesson in all of it. You need what you learned inthat lesson to get into the next season.

That got deep fast.

Goodnight Beloved Friend.

Update: Deep into the evening, I went to target to get some cetaphil and african black soap. However all they had was the Shea Moisture kind that has parfum (rolling eyes). I ended up spending the best 7 dollars ($3 off coupon) of my life on Eucerin Eczema Relief and I can say I have not itched for over 3 hrs. God is Good.

Tuesday's with Jesus

It’s me again.

This week i’ve been plagued with the thought of the difficulty of seperating the gift from the person. We have so many church leaders who share their world on social media. However we are very critical of the life they lead. “They’re x,y, and z… so they dont need to be over there” What gives us this right to say what another person should or should not be doing? Have we become unfamiliar with how God can and will use anybody or thing that HE chooses? Hasn’t He called you to do something extraordinary? Are you worthy of the spotlight? Did God call us to be the spotlight? or did He call us to use the gift? Did he call us to test the spirit or the person ? Are we not all sinful people with gifts who have been redeemed by God ?

Sidebar: This jogs my memory back to the life of Saul. Saul stayed on one. He was King…momentarily. Then because he fell to his flesh, he was tormented. God bought along David to ease his pain and eventually take his place. That by far wasnt the end of Sauls story. Saul went on and on and on. Until one day on the road to Damascus, Saul’s world is flipped upside down. He has a change of name and heart. God was still with Saul all that time. Even though he strayed from the gift, the gift never strayed from him.

Questions of Meditation: Are we giving our leaders enough grace ? Are we praying for them or convicting them in our own courts of public opinion ? How can we open our hearts to lend grace and stray from church gossip?

Dont Envy the Image.

“You don’t know the cost of the oil in my alabaster box”

We are currently in the prime age of the internet. This means social media galore. We have avenues into people’s personal lives that we’re not available in th 90s is right in the palm of our hands every day. Most times, we only see the good. Thats all we really want to hear right? If you ask someone how are they doing? Are you really expecting them to pour their heart on the table or meet you with some standard cliche of “ Im fine”, "“Blessed and Highly Favored”, or “ I cant complain”. Then we smile or chuckle it off.

When you’re not at the party, it can look like everyone is having fun without you. You scroll and you see smiles, cute captions, expensive trips, and great news. However you dont get to see what’s behind the social media mask. Don’t get lost in the hype of trying to be someone else that you forget who you are. You don’t know that person’s pain or struggle. We are so quick to judge others for what they post, but we don’t know the story. Just like people don’t know yours. You cannont assume that everyone does not struggle like you. What makes you think you’re privy to someone else’s scars?

I said all that to say this: Don’t envy the image. Create your own images and don’t be ashamed if it doesnt look like what every one else is out there doing.

Tuesday’s with Jesus

On Tuesday’s…I do a thing. It’s my fasting day. Generally I spend this time practicing being grateful, staying away from social media and using my kind words. Fasting looks different for everyone. I’’ll get into the specifics later. This morning I’m going to share my point of focus today.

“When Jesus came to the place, He looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, hurry and come down because today I must stay at your house.

So he quickly came down and welcomed Him joyfully. All who saw it began to complain, “He’s gone to lodge with a sinful man! ””‭‭Luke‬ ‭19:5-7‬ ‭HCSB‬‬

I have two thoughts: 

 I. Is your house a home ?

What kind of environment are you living in? Is it suitable for company ? For yourself? I’m not talking about your physical house but your mental/emotional house. Are you too busy that you don’t have a moment to spend with your creator? I’ve been there. It’s difficult balancing two jobs, social life, business, and yourself. I’ve found myself being spread thin and truth is I’m tired. Hence why I’m back to my weekly fast.

II. Jesus Loves Us Forreal.

Jesus tells Zacchaeus “I must stay with you”. Not can I , but I’s going to happen, now come get this love.

I imagine the crowd thinking “Zacchaeus the short dude who gathered all of the taxes? How dare you Jesus?” They were pisssedd. They felt more deserving of his time, not this monkey man who took their taxes.

I’m reminded of how God doesn’t care what we’ve done or did. He still loves us. Despite all of our faults and failures. I’ve been a terrible daughter, sister, cousin, friend, etc. yet he still wants to come stay at my house. Actually it’s a must. He wants to check in on me. That’s what we do for those we love, especially when we know they need it.

Just like He loves us, He loves those we dislike and have done wrong. We hate to hear this. Ever see someone you can’t stand and be pissed? “Like Really God? You see me over here and you spreading out all that joy and blessing over there. God if you really knew what they did , you wouldn’t be over at they house like that. “ Guess what? He knows. He loves them in their mess too. Just like He loved you when you were cuttin up last week.

Don’t be the crowd. Don’t be pissed when you see God at someone else’s house. He’s coming to yours too. Greet Him with joy and not your misplaced jealousy.

Be Blessed Beloved.

New Beginings.

From the Archives: January 2017

Im not into new years resolutions. I used to be that person who said "New years resloutions are meant to be broken" . These last few days I've been reflecting on how far I've gotten in life and what I want to do next year. I have so many big things coming into fruition. While looking through my journals and a few affirmations I made at the beginning of 2016, all of them have come true. I didnt even realize that these were the things that I spoke over my life. Im currently working on everything that Im taking in 2017. This includes relationships, prayer life, moving, graduating, launchng BB, everything. Everything I can dream of I write it down and pray over it. Despite all the struggles and hardships I've acquired within the last year my dreams still came through. It reminded me of one of my favorite Zora Neale Hurtson quotes “There are years that ask questions and years that answer.” For me 2016 has answered questions I didnt even know I asked.  I wonder what type of year 2017 would be. 

Update: 2017 was a year that asked qustions, a lot of questions…..

Talking About “It”

We all have something that has happened to us that we keep locked away in the vaults of our hearts. It’s the thing we run from (or towards). This vaulted gem, has played a major role in shaping who we are. It shapes how we interact with and perceive other people. In the clinical world, we refer to these “gems” as a traumatic experience. As a counselor I often coach people through “talking about it”.  Not just talking about “It” , but processing “It”. While I have to help people process their stuff. I have to process mine. So here it is.

Ive written this account several times over the years. Only to erase it. I guess I was hoping that it would feel less real. Let’s get to it.

Sunday January 23, 2015 life as I had known it stopped. I would never again be the girl I was before that day. It was early in the morning. I was expecting to be awakened by my mom for church. I was awoken by my neighbor to get up. My mom never woke up. I woke up on my favorite day , to paramedics in my house. Sure my mom had been to the hospital plenty of times. I wasn’t worried. I sat in my best friend’s room as my dad came over and simply said “Mommy didn’t make it”. My whole world s h a t t e r e d. Completely. There’s no words to describe what it felt like. I laid on the sofa hyperventilating as church members started to fill the house. I thought I too was going to die that Sunday.  I wanted to.

All of the “I’m sorry’s” wouldn’t bring her back and it pissed me off everytime someone said it when her passing was bought up. Why would you be sorry? You didn’t take her from me and certainly couldn’t bring her back.

The first two years I imagined she went on another deployment. I knew she wasn’t coming back, but it made sleeping easier. As a matter of fact, all I did was sleep and go to school. I lost hope. I would lay in bed all day. My dad would come in and ask me if I was getting up, I’d say yes, but I’d never get up .

When I finally started becoming honest with myself and saying no. He started making me get up. He saw my hope fading. I started hating church and sundays. I didn’t hate God, but I hated going to church without her. I hated the stares. I hated having to relive the day she died. It still runs through my mind. I remember that morning and the night before like it happened five minutes ago. 

I stopped talking to people. When I did, I was rude. I was angry, I’m thankful to the five people who were great enough to journey with me through my brokeness into adulthood. They’ve seen me at my worst and never left. They called me out with Love. These are my best friends...forever. The first four years after she died are kind of one big night in my mind. One long blur. Every now and again I’ll have really specific memories and it hurts. It hurts to remember feeling that depressed. I was hopeless. It felt like everyone was against me. My family did what they thought was right for me. As an adult, I realize they gave me what they had to give.

Truth be told it’s still hard, but I’ve managed how to deal with her dying. No big words or inspiration helped me. It was a matter of years...and God. I didn’t decide that I needed to stop living in the darkness until I was twenty. That’s when I realized I wasn’t going to die. I had a life to live. I realized that all of the could’ves, should’ves, and  would’ves weren’t. I couldn’t even imagine who I would have turned out to be had she been here.

That’s all I have to share for now. I guess what I wanted to illustrate with this post is, don’t feel bad if you’re still struggling where you are. The struggle doesn’t feel good, but don’t get yourself down because you can’t see a way out. It took me years to accept and want to change my situation. I made changes to what I could and adapted to the rest. It sounds cliche, but trust the process. The journey is momentary affliction in the scope of forever. This journey of mine has helped me mentor other young girls who have lost moms. It’s helped me be empathetic. It’s taught me that I am resilient. I am capable of rising when everyone(including self) thought I was going to be a failure. This journey has blessed me with multiple “mothers”. I lost my mom and gained a tribe of additional families. I have rooms at everybody’s house whenever I need it.

I’m glad that I made it out of the darkness alive and blessed to be able to talk about my “It”. My “It” isn’t my secret gem anymore. It’s something that happened to me , but it’s not who I’ve become.