Category: faith (Page 2 of 3)

Reflections of Motherhood

As this Mother’s Day is coming to a close, I’m glad to take the time to reflect on what motherhood means to me. Each year I do this, and as I have evolved as a person, I see that I’m grateful for different aspects of motherhood, as time goes on.

I’ve seen many funny memes across social media platforms, citing the definitions and meanings of motherhood. My favorite is this:

Mom Job Description

Based on the life and adventures of my daughter and me, I have a few I would add:

Undercover Angel, Personal Prayer Warrior and Theme Park Bestie.

Motherhood covers a multitude of things, but one of the best and most important aspects is covering her, even when she doesn’t know or understand. Praying over her day, her thoughts, her path, and her life. Providing guidance through life’s difficulties like why it’s better to turn the other cheek, or understanding that honesty is the best policy even if you have to lose friends. Motherhood is about teaching her character over physical beauty, for it doesn’t matter how pretty you are, if you are mean and disrespectful to people. Being a “mean girl” is not okay, and I’ll never tolerate it.

On the flip side, we have to have a good work/play balance. One of our favorite pastimes is going to Six Flags. We bond on roller coasters! Yes I must teach her the fundamentals of being a woman of God, but that doesn’t have to mean she has to be bored! There’s nothing wrong with good, clean fun! If it happens to be a rainy day when we can’t enjoy the outdoors, we both really enjoy arts and crafts, especially playing with colors (nail polish in particular). It’s always a pleasure watching her express her creativity.

Today as I was reflecting on what motherhood is to me, the thing that stood out the most was just remembering to seize the moment. Between school, work and extracurricular activities, things can get hectic and of course, don’t always go as planned. But I have found that when I take the time to look into her eyes before we rush out of the door, kiss her little nose and wish her a good day, I have peace in knowing that our last interaction was a positive one. Or when she hurts herself, even at eight years old, she still wants mommy to kiss the bump or bruise, and then it’s all better. There is joy in knowing that my kisses have healing powers.

All in all, whether she is up or down, sick or well, happy or sad, I have learned to be conscious of our time together and to cherish these moments. I have always thought that time grew wings when she was born, and I refuse to let these moments slip by because I’m focused on temporary things. Part of our children’s self esteem comes from knowing that they are valued by their parents, and it is my goal to make sure she grows to be confident in who God has created her to be. And as always, I’m grateful to have been chosen to carry her; the gateway through which she entered this world.

I pray that these words have been a blessing to you. 🙂

How Kingdom Helper came about

Ready to blogSeveral years ago, as I arrived at church, I noticed a license plate that said, “Kelper”. For months following, this word would cross my mind, and I kept coming back to thinking that it somehow stood for for “Kingdom Helper”. I finally took the opportunity to ask the owner of the vehicle where this word came from. They shared that it was the nickname of a close family member. Not long after this conversation, I had a dream. I saw angel wings on the back of a shirt. When I woke up, “Kingdom Helper” came into my mind, and instantly it clicked. Angels are kingdom helpers! It all seemed so silly, but the dream was so vivid and real, and I couldn’t wait to share with this person what I saw.

The next time I saw them, I excitedly shared my dream, and what I thought it meant. Towards the end of our conversation, this person showed me a tattoo of angel wings on their back. This was my confirmation. I started to praise God! This was one of many epic moments I would experience in watching this entity unfold.

Over time, God would drop words into my spirit and I soon came to realize that this was the beginning of something great that God was doing in my life. I’ve been a writer since I was young child, effortlessly creating books of poetry and short stories. In April of 2013, I decided to launch this blog.

Launching the blog at that time was a huge leap of faith. I wasn’t completely confident in sharing what God was giving me, because I didn’t want to get it wrong. This has truly stretched me in my faith, and helped me to develop an ear to hear from God.

The goal in starting the blog has always been to share my faith, words of wisdom and clarity, as given to me by God, so that became my tag line. Over time, I would start to consistently receive words to share, and it became an undeniable experience every time I would hear from God. I remember the first blog I wrote, titled “Not just a prank call…”. A comedian, Nephew Tommy, prank called a gospel artist, Byron Cage. I listened to the call over and over again, blessed by the patience Byron Cage exhibited throughout the call. He didn’t curse the prankster out. He didn’t show out. He truly was slow to anger. God started to drop things in my spirit about that call and the inspiration drawn from that experience is what led me to start the blog.

The blogs I write are often drawn from daily life experiences and testimonies. I’m so grateful for what God is doing in me, and through me with this. It is an honor and a pleasure to share my walk of faith. I was created to serve. I am a Kingdom Helper, and I pray that as you increase your walk of faith, you would decide to become a Kingdom Helper too. Be blessed!

Bad days

A while back, I made a decision that I don’t have bad days. I may have tough days, but I don’t have bad days. Here is why:

Nothing that happens in my life takes God by surprise.

Yep. I am His child. He created me and put me here, so I know that there is a purpose behind everything that happens to me and around me. The word of God says, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” (Romans 8:28, NKJV). With that, whether it is a good day, emotional day or rough day, I do not believe in “bad days”. God already knew, and whatever happens will work out for my good. If at the end of the day I still have breath in my body, I should use it to worship and exalt Him because I got through it.

Another reason why I don’t like to acknowledge bad days is because God also promises us new mercies each day, and gave us a helper, his Holy Spirit. This is another confirmation of God knowing that things aren’t going to happen as we plan, so he makes provision for the wisdom and knowledge we need on one hand, and the forgiveness we will need when we fall short on the other. Whether said bad day occurs as a result of poor decision making, or unforeseen circumstances, God decided long before you were born, that you could make it through.

Today, I encourage you to change your perspective. You don’t necessarily have to decide that you won’t acknowledge bad days, but you can change how you look at bad days, by understanding that if God brought you to it, He can bring you through it. Life doesn’t always unfold as we plan, but we can rest assured that we are in the palm of the Father, no matter how hard things get. Trust in His plan. His thoughts are not our thoughts.

I pray that these words have been a blessing to you!

Red cup controversy….

This morning, I thought about that red cup and the controversy surrounding it. I really couldn’t wrap my head around why it even mattered whether Christmas decor was printed on an object I’m going to throw in the trash anyway. 

Furthermore, why should my relationship with God be reduced to snowflakes or Christmas trees on a cup?? 
I see this as a part of the reason why people don’t want to be Christians. This is some shallow silly mess!! Why would someone want to commit their lives to Christ if this is what type of stuff we make an uproar about? There are bigger fish to fry….things that actually impact our lives, like Christians in other countries not being able to publicly profess their faith. Or mass shootings occurring day by day. We have been given clear instructions on how to handle this life we are experiencing right now: Watch and pray. (1 Peter 4:7). There are miracles, signs and wonders waiting to manifest. The subject of these cups are a distraction to what we should actually be focused on. 
Our lives as Christians are supposed to model after Christ. That means when we look at something, we have to look deeper than what the eye can see. I’m an optimistic person (who happens to like a Tall cup of Pikes with cream and Splenda), and will not let Starbucks or any other organization for that matter, drive what I allow to represent or exhibit my faith. 
Take heed to that which you respond.     Although we have a responsibility as believers to win others to Christ, a true win isn’t achieved by creating ruckus over things that lack eternal value. We win them over by love. And the Word of God tells us that time and time again. 
My conclusion on the subject is this: 
The cup is red. And so is the blood of Jesus Christ. I’ll gladly enjoy my cup
of Pikes, knowing that I’m blessed to have an optimistic outlook on things. 😊
I pray that these words have been a blessing to you. 

An extension of God…

Today as I browsed the produce section at the grocery store,  a sweet old lady caught my attention.


“Well don’t you look beautiful today?!” She said. 

“Well you do too!” I responded. 

I was still in my church clothes: a cream colored knee length dress and nude pumps. She appeared to be in her Sunday Best too. As I approached the section of corn, we shared words about shucking corn and being country. She helped me take the husks off the corn I was going to purchase. As we got ready to depart, I just felt an urge to give her a hug. 

I said, “Ma’am, I feel like I need to give you a hug. Do you mind?”

“Of course not! I’ll take a hug!” She exclaimed. 

Then she said, “Can you pray for me? I need for you to pray for me…”

Without a second thought, I told her I would. Then I felt that familiar feeling. I didn’t need to wait to pray. The word of God tells us, “For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.” (Matthew 18:20).

We joined hands, and I began to pray for her grandson, who had accidentally shot and killed his younger brother two years ago. I prayed for their parents, for comfort, healing, restoration. I prayed against guilt and shame among other things. 

After I was done praying, she said she felt the Holy Spirit. She lifted her arm, and I could see the blonde hairs, standing straight up. 

I was so excited about this moment. Excited because I had just left church, and my pastor specifically called for us to “bridge the gap” of racial division during the upcoming week. The woman with whom I prayed is Caucasian. I am African American. It blessed me that I could not only pray with her, but she, being from another generation be open and kind enough to shuck corn that she wasn’t even going to buy. 

I’m so grateful that God saw fit to use me. It amazes me to know that I can be an extension of Him, and that when I open my mouth, He will show up. 

This was something I realized my pastor often speaks of. God wants our availability. We never know whose deliverance is attached to our obedience and availability. 

Choose to be available to God today. Someone is a prayer away from something, and you could be the very person God uses to make it come to pass. 

You, yes you, could even BE that answered prayer. 

I pray that these words have been a blessing to you. 

~Kingdom Helper~

Running…

Have you ever been running? I’m not talking about exercising. I’m talking about running from something. Running from something so fast, and so hard, but when you look, that very thing you’re running from is still right there with you? I’ve caught myself in that situation in my life a time or two. I have found myself running from situations that I needed to deal with, to get my life in order. Come to think of it, the situations that come to mind were situations where I ran from emotions that were difficult to deal with. Abandonment, rejection and low self-esteem are just a few.

There was a time when I was a part of a church home where it was my desire to serve, but no matter what I tried to do, whether it was the Children’s Ministry, the Media Team or even just a book club, I could never seem to get plugged in. After almost a year of trying, I couldn’t understand why if I had the desire to serve, why I couldn’t get plugged in. Fast forward a few years. We had moved and I had been attending services at a new church. The difference this time was that my husband and I had joined this ministry together. The opportunities to serve were abundant. So abundant that I was serving in a different ministry almost every Sunday each month. After a few months of this, I realized how drained I was. This wasn’t what I thought it was supposed to be. I decided to only do about three of the ministries I was involved in, and chose the same Sunday for those that required help on Sundays.

One day not long after I modified my serving schedule, God showed me how I had been burying myself with things to do, to get my mind off of what I was going through spiritually and emotionally. It was one of the greatest revelations of my life. It’s so important that we check our motives when we do things, but even more, to make sure that we are not running from something or burying ourselves in being busy to mask how we are really feeling on the inside. I now serve in a more wholesome way. I am not “stretched too thin” or drained from the time and energy I’m expending. In addition, God opened the floodgates with opportunities, because my husband and I were rooted in the same church home. God honors unity.

If this is something you struggle with, I would like to encourage you to pray for direction and clarity on what you should be doing. Two of the ministries I ended up in were the Children’s Ministry, because God has given me a passion for our little ones. I also chose to stay active with our Guest Ministry. I love interacting with people, but this was a ministry that God has used to really help me grow individually and professionally, due to me being required to speak in front of and address groups of people. I never thought Public Speaking would be something I would get into! But I’m glad God used it for my good, and for His Glory.

I pray these words have been a blessing to you.

‘Tis so sweet….

‘Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,

Just to take Him at His Word;

Just to rest upon His promise,

And to know, “Thus saith the Lord!”

 

Jesus, Jesus, how I trust Him!

How I’ve proved Him o’er and o’er;

Jesus, Jesus, precious Jesus!

Oh, for grace to trust Him more….

This is my favorite song of all time. As I listened to a video of a young child singing this song, it started to manifest in my spirit so strongly, and I had to go find the lyrics to make sure I really had just heard what I did.

I got saved when I was about 14 years old. I remember the pastor doing the altar call, and as he spoke I felt a pull to be at that altar. Without knowing or understanding what I felt, I got up. Although I’m sure I was at least 50 to 75 feet away from the altar, it felt like it was the shortest distance I walked in my life. That day, I made the best decision I ever could. I gave my life to Christ.

Although I was from pillar to post most of my childhood, I was blessed to end up in a few Godly homes. Places where they didn’t just go to church, but they lived the word of God. The seeds that were planted in me in those times were crucial to leading me up to that fateful day when I got saved.

As I think about my walk with Christ, I feel as though I have had just as many questionable moments as I have had faith filled moments. Not long after I got saved, I began to deal with attacks from the enemy about being rejected and abandoned. I didn’t want to live. That emptiness is probably the worst feeling a person could ever feel. My “faith tank” was just as empty as my mind and spirit. But God kept me anyway because He had a plan, and knew that it would work out for His glory.

On the other hand, I have had many moments of operating in faith and reminding God of His word. In December of 2010, my husband and I were having financial difficulties, and wasn’t sure how we were going to have enough to pay our rent. As I was driving down Interstate 75 one afternoon, I told the Lord, “If you don’t make a way, then I don’t know what we are going to do.” There was something in me that just felt like God HAD to do something about it. I’m His child. He loves me. Why would he let us lose the roof over our heads? A few days later, I was handed my paycheck. Something told me to open it immediately. We had gotten our yearly bonus the previous week, so I was astounded to find that it appeared I had another bonus. I turned around and asked my manager if we were supposed to get two bonuses, and of course we were not. I went to the human resources manager, and she looked over everything and found that Blue Cross Blue Shield had refunded several weeks’ worth of premiums due to an over payment.

My God! You can bet I had a moment with the Lord, right there! God already knows our lives from before conception to our eternal destiny, and all the details in between. God knew I was going to receive that refund, long before I did. And He knew that it would be provision for a time of need. I can only give Him glory. That’s amazing to me.

With every situation I have been through, it has been amazing to watch how God works. Early in my faith, I would pray and just hope the prayer was answered. Now, I have learned how to rest in Him. I pray, and remind Him of the prophetic word that was spoken, or the scripture that references what I may be going through. Sometimes, prayer needs to be much more than just asking Him to fix something or to provide something. It needs to be praise for what He has already done. At other times, it needs to be worship because of who He is.

When I visualize my journey of faith, every situation has been a building block. These “building blocks” have created a “refuge”. I can stand against anything that comes to me, knowing that as a child of God, if God doesn’t bring me out of it, there is a purpose for that pain or suffering. Yes, you do have to go through something to get to the point of even appreciating the trials that don’t turn out the way you want or expect. His thoughts are not our thoughts. We may have a plan on how to handle something, but we have to be careful that we are not doing these things in our own strength. God is not pushy or forceful. You have to invite Him in and let Him do His work.

In conclusion, the words of this song certainly speak to a great level in our walk of faith. That is to learn to trust in the Lord. Rest in what you know about who He is.

‘Tis so sweet…

What a beautiful thing it is, to know the Lord. To know that I can trust in Him.

How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” Psalm 119-103

Bold in God: Part II

I love reading the bible with my daughter. When we explore the Word of God together, it blesses me to see her eyes light up as she receives wisdom and revelation.

One night, we talked about Proverbs 28:1 which says, “The wicked flee when no one pursues, But the righteous are bold as a lion.” (NKJV)

As I explained this verse to her, I got yet another confirmation of who we are as children of God.

“….But the righteous are bold as a lion.”

As we conversed about this, it became very clear to me how this verse speaks to a specific characteristic of the lion; boldness. When you think of a lion and how it operates, it knows its territory. And it will protect its territory by all means, and at any cost. Lions show no fear, because they know their authority.

Do you know your territory? Do you know how to operate when your territory is violated? These are the questions that started to come to me. We have to know how to operate as children of God. We have to know our territory. We have to know what to do when the enemy violates our territory. The very foundation to this thing is knowing that we belong to an all-powerful, all knowing, and ever present God, who sent His Son to die for us. The thought alone, of my all powerful, all knowing and ever present God, gives me the confidence to know that I can conquer anything that comes against me. He created this world and put me in it. He will guide and protect me because He is the one who put me here. As long as my trust is in Him, He covers me. I see it in the big and small situations in my life daily. He has given me a license to be bold, because he declares that if I live righteous, I am as bold a lion. My conscious can be at rest, even when there is danger, because I am His child.

Sounds simple? It did to me when I put it into words. However, it was quite the journey, getting to that level of confidence in God. It takes a lifetime for some to get it, but as long as you get it, that’s what matters.

I pray that these words have been a blessing to you.

Bold In God

Not long ago, I was at an event. A woman prophesied to me concerning some things and advised me to reread the book A Purpose Driven Life. For weeks, I would search in thrift stores (I’m an avid bargain shopper), to no avail. On Sunday, February 15, I walked into a store and had an unforgettable moment. I searched the bookshelf and found nothing. Almost exasperated, I stood up and said, “Lord, send me the book.” I looked over and there was another section of books. I walked over, and on the top shelf lay a hardback copy of The Purpose Driven Life. Hardback for $1.50. I couldn’t help but to shout unto God. Yes, right there in the store. After a few seconds, I looked up and realized people were looking at me. A lady asked if everything was ok.

 

I said, “You don’t know what God just did! I literally just prayed and asked God to send me this book, and it was right there!! I’m sorry, I was just having a moment. But God is real. You just have to open your mouth and talk to Him. ”

 

She responded, “I just have chills all over me right now. Don’t apologize. I needed to see that. I’m proud of you. You’re bold.”

 

That moment changed my life. I’m so glad that God has blessed me to be bold in my faith. We live in a country where we have freedom of religion, however had I had that moment elsewhere, I could have been as good as dead.

 

I have to marinate on that. I may be in the comfort of my home, relaxing as I write this, but I firmly believe that you could put me anywhere in this world, and I would still walk in my faith. I know without a shadow of a doubt, that my Lord has got me covered. And if I die because of my faith in God, then so be it. The word of God says in 2 Corinthians 5:8: We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent from the body and to be present with the Lord. (NKJV)

 

I have no worries. And if you walk with the Lord, you have no worries as well. Be bold, and walk in faith, knowing that your confidence is in the Lord. He will not fail you.

 

My heart goes out to the families of the 21 Christians who were beheaded because of their faith.

 

Isaiah 57:1-2 NKJV

The righteous perishes,

And no man takes it to

heart;

Merciful men are taken

away,

While no one considers

That the righteous is taken

away from evil.

He shall enter into peace;

They shall rest in their beds,

Each one walking in his

uprightness.

 

~~

About that Jabez…

In 2005, I came across a book titled The Prayer of Jabez. As I read through it, I was intrigued at the idea of praying for an “enlarged territory”, however I had no clue what I was getting myself into.  I vaguely remember the time period in which I came across and read the book, however I remember vividly that I would soon hear a song about the same thing, titled, “Bless Me (Prayer of Jabez)”. This was one of the first times I remember God showing me something, and confirming it. At that time, I wasn’t a deeply spiritual or religious person. I did, however, take heed to the fact that I was shown something once, and seeing it twice had to mean something. Over that summer, I played that song over and over, not realizing that I was allowing those words to permeate my atmosphere, and it would soon manifest.

I was a participant on a website in which I completed consumer surveys. I would gain points for each survey that was completed, and I was able to redeem the points for various rewards. I started the venture, not thinking anything major would come of it. In May or June of 2006, I was checking my emails, and decided to check my spam folder. I came across an email from MySurvey, stating that I was the second place winner for a Home Theater System valued at $3600. I thought twice about it, then decided to call customer service to see if the email was legitimate. To my surprise, it was! The rep asked if I wanted the prize or the cash value. I requested the check for $3600. The rep confirmed my personal information, and within two weeks, I received the check in the mail. I was astounded. My bank held the funds for several days, but the check cleared and my name was also posted on the MySurvey website as a winner. I could hardly believe what had taken place. Of the things I did with the money, I bought my first car! I had enough left over to pay my insurance policy for the full six month term.

A few months into getting the car, the Lord showed me how that “enlarged territory” was a blessing, but it also required an increase in responsibility. I meditated on that. What a great piece of wisdom given to me directly from the Lord. While having an “enlarged territory” may be a blessing, you have to be ready to accept the increase in responsibility that comes with it. I went from being on the bus, to now having my own transportation. The bus was fairly easy. I paid my fare and got to my destination. If I missed the bus, I would call a cab. Having the car was a whole different ballgame. I now had a tag to renew every year, maintenance, insurance and gas. While the tradeoff was that I had the independence and freedom to go wherever I wanted whenever I wanted to go, I still had to maintain the blessing in order for it to continue to be a blessing.

It all seems so small looking back, but it was a great lesson indeed. Not long ago, I thought about praying that prayer again, but I caught myself, and was reminded that whatever the Lord sees fit to “bless me indeed”, there is a new level of responsibility that comes along with it. Maturity has taught me to be mindful of what I pray for.

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