Are you a slave to your past? 

Stop allowing past regrets, past let-downs, past betrayal, past struggles, past relationships, past friendships….interfere with the possibilities of what the future can hold. 
When I moved to Memphis and started teaching at Kingsbury, I promised to never befriend or become associate with coworkers….simply because a PAST betrayal of a “coworker turned friend/associate” at my last job. 

As expected, I walked in with my guard up, ASSUMING that your coworkers can’t be trusted…ASSUMING that any coworker who was “friendlier than normal” had an ulterior motive. So, I spent most of the time on a “hi, bye, and keeping it moving” deal. 

I started at Kingsbury in October (2014); in December(2014), one of my coworkers approached me about a taking a trip with her and couple other coworkers in March (2015). Immediately my PAST said, “Don’t do it. Remember, your promise when coming. It’s going to end just like it did at your last job.”

I told her I’d think about it and let her know. Of course, I prayed about it. After getting the OKAY, the trip was booked and paid for a week later. 

Here it is March (2017), I have taken several trips with with coworkers…who I can now TRULY call friends. We have taken two cruises and have traveled to New Orleans, Las Vegas, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Myrtle Beach, and we are leaving for San Diego next week. Just last night we had a girls’ night/ sleepover. 

In these three years, there has not been any drama, fallen outs- just great times, many many many laughs, and awesome memories.

Contrary to popular belief, everyone isn’t messy or full of drama. There are people with pure hearts, free of evil intentions. 

I said all of that to say- Listen, everyone doesn’t want to hurt you or betray you. There are actually people who desire healthy relationships/friendships. Don’t allow your past to make you ASSUME that everyone is out to get you. The wall you’ve built to keep the wrong people out also keeps the right people from getting in. I know they say those who truly want to be in your life will tear down that wall, but the truth of the matter is- Everyone doesn’t have the energy to fight you to be a part of your life. 

We’ve all been hurt, we’ve all been let down, we’ve all been disappointed, we’ve all experienced some form of betrayal…THAT’S LIFE. You can allow your past to make you isolate yourself and be bitter or you can let it make you better and get out there and LOVE like you’ve never been hurt. 

Had I listened to my PAST, I would’ve missed making so many great memories with great people.❤

Prerequisite for THE PROMISE

Life happens to us all. None of us are exempt from some form of suffering. My suffering may not be yours and yours may not be mine, but we all have those days…those moments…those seasons that are draining, tiring, painful, and uncomfortable.
The real issue is, “How do you respond to those times?”

Do you walk around, with your head down? Are you mad at the world?…at God? Do you throw pity parties? Are you making others lives difficult because your life is? 
What do you do? 
Life is only 10% of what happens and 90% of how you respond. So, you hold the power. You make your seasons 10 times worse than it really has to be when you spend time complaining, throwing tantrums, and focusing on and living in your circumstances. 
Yeah, this may be a tough season, but please know that there is someone, somewhere going through and experiencing much worse. Please know that there is someone, somewhere praying for your circumstances. No, things may not be the best, but be honest- things are not the worst either. 

 

Instead of asking, “Why is this happening TO me?” Look at it as this is happening FOR you. Those tough times are necessary. They had to happen. 
This reminds me of my Freshman year of college. I was told I had to take a remedial math course because of my low score on the ACT. I begged, screamed, and pleaded not to be placed in a remedial course. My reasoning was I did not want anyone to think I was slow. 
The advisor told me, “This remedial math is necessary. It is put in place to prevent you from failing later.”
So this is to help me? My advisor replied, “Yes. It’s allowing you to get the skills you need. It serves as a prerequisite for College Algebra.”
My point for sharing? Hmmmm, having to take and sit through that remedial course was disappointing and embarrassing to say the least, but when I got out of my feelings and starting looking at the course as help instead of harm, it became beneficial to me. In fact, it turned out to be what I needed. 
The next semester, I passed College Algebra with flying colors…and check this, people who were not required to take the remedial math because they had the high ACT score, struggled, some even failed, but I did not, and it was because of that remedial course I fought against. 

Listen, this tough season is necessary. Stop fighting against it. It is a PREREQUISITE for the PROMISE. Change your perspective and go through it. See, the enemy thinks this is going to harm- decrease- demote you, but God is so strategic- He’s going to use this same season to help- increase- promote you. 
Be ENCOURAGED. ❤❤❤❤

…in the end

For the past six or seven months, there has been road construction on Covington Pike here in Memphis. I used to think, “Man, when are they going to finish working? Nothing in the world should take this long.” 
Having one lane open in Memphis’ traffic is frustrating and even more frustrating on the mornings when I changed outfits four or five times (😬)and left my apartment after 6:30 a.m. See, I remember Covington Pike before they started the work and it was fine- no potholes and the traffic flow was very steady. So in my mind, they should’ve left it alone, especially since it’s a popular route for travelers who work. Why fix something if it isn’t broken, right? If it’s working, leave well enough alone.
Well, yesterday, they finished one side. NOW (catch that), I understand what took so long. Instead of the two lanes that were there before they started have been converted into three lanes. The traffic flow was good before the work, but MY GOD, it is even better now.

As I traveled through yesterday and admired what they had done thus far, I reflected on all my frustrations over the past six or seven months. Before I knew it, I said, “Oh yeah, I like this.” See, I had been complaining for the last seven months, and the construction was working in my favor. (Catch THAT!) 

Soon after “Trust The Process” dropped in my spirit.
My point?

Sometimes, we reach a place of contentment and comfort in our lives. Yeah, everything is working just fine and everything is all good, BUT are we being stretched or challenged? Then, God comes along and shakes things up because He wants us all to reach our full potential and He knows we’ll never get there in our comfort zones. So, we are pulled out our comfort zones. The pouting and whining start, “Lord, why? My life was good”…..

…you know like Covington Pike was BEFORE the construction. 

Then, when we finally stop fighting against what God is trying to do, the work in us and around us start. Sure it’s frustrating and uncomfortable, but if we’ll TRUST THE PROCESS and go through it, it’s going to work for our good…IN THE END. The life we thought was good before doesn’t even compare to what God has in store for us. Like me, you’ll find yourself saying, “Oh yeah, I like this.” See, God doesn’t just want us to live a good life. He wants to us to live the BEST life. 

Listen, TRUST YOUR PROCESS. Don’t be afraid of your uncomfortable season. You can’t see it NOW, but keep pressing in. Press and praise, praise and press…your way through.It’s not happening to you, it’s happening FOR you.

BE FLEXIBLE 

Last night before setting my alarm, I had a plan in place. 

1. Quiet Time

2. Breakfast

3. Gym…

4. …and then get dressed and be on time for work. 

This morning, my alarm sounded at 4:15. I wanted to press the snooze button, but I didn’t. I jumped up and proceeded with my plan..

When I finished PMS (Prayer, Mediation & Study), I “Herbalifed”, dressed, and left for the gym in my complex. [I promised myself I’d be more disciplined with working out when the school year starts.] Anyway, when I arrived at the gym, my gate pass would not allow me to gain entry. Usually, when I swipe it, it turns green. This morning, it kept giving me the “red signal.” I did it a couple more times. Still, no luck. 

“Ugh,” I thought. “I really wanted to work out.” …and I’ll admit, that made me feel some type of way. I wanted everything to go according to MY plan. 

As I drove back to my apartment, two words dropped in my spirit. 

“Be flexible.”

Initially, I did not pick up on it. 

The Holy Spirit spoke again. “Be Flexible.”…but this time, with clarity.

When I walked in my apartment, I grabbed my iPad, opened the You Tube app and searched for Leslie Sansone and proceeded with my work out…and that workout was better than any workout I had ever done at the gym. (Catch THAT!)


There’s so much revelation in this. 
My point? 

Too often, we get so fixated on our plan for our lives…and then when something does not  go as we planned, we get so frustrated and we give up. Then, we start to feel sorry for ourselves…and then, we start throwing a pity party…and then, we start complaining…and then, we become ungrateful…and then, we become envious of those who we feel plans have worked or are working…and then, we become mad at the world…and then,…on and on and on and on.

You see the cycle? 

This is much deeper than my workout plan failing. I don’t know who this is for, but God is telling me to tell you to “Be Flexible.” Things may not have gone according to YOUR plan, but things are going according His plan. His plan is always in place, always prevails, and if you’d trust Him, it’ll be much better than any plan you’ve could have ever constructed on your own. (Did you catch that?) 

Be flexible! Get up and get back in the race, and Trust where He is leading you! He has a plan for your life. 

“…but I love it, God.”


During my quiet time this morning, the message this image depicts dropped in my spirit.
We are afraid to release that and who we know are not for us because our little to no faith does not allow us to believe that God has more for us…..so we hold on to those people and things…because in our minds, we’d rather have something, even if it doesn’t amount to anything…because it’s better than having nothing at all right?
Wrong.
So as I was saying…we hold on…to that man or woman when God has clearly shown us that he/she is not for us…to those random text and call buddies that you only text and call when you’re bored and being attacked with the spirit of loneliness because you don’t believe there’s a woman or man out there that God has prepared JUST FOR YOU…or to that job that doesn’t bring fulfillment because you do not really believe that God can blow your mind and bless you to work where your passion lies….so as I was saying…we hold on…

…like the little girl in this picture….because we THINK we love what we have, but truthfully….
….some of us are so unhappy and we’re praying for God to do something NEW, but how can He when you refuse to release the old? 
Oh, wait. I get it….we want God to show us the NEW before we release the old?….but nooooooo, He doesn’t work that way. He wants us to trust Him. He wants us to operate in FAITH…and He says all we need is FAITH the size of a mustard seed…that’s it. That’s the size of the tip on a ball point pen. That’s it!
So, go ahead and release it; God wants to do something new. 

“Just Trust Me.”- God 
Lord, I thank you for not only using me to minister to others, but using me to minister to me. #SpeakLord #LordIHearYou

“I got you.” -God

Okay, so I’m in line getting ready to pay for brunch, $35 + tax. My face was buried in my Facebook app posting my usual statuses. 
*Before I continue, let me give you some background information.*

This morning after I finished my quiet time with God, I paid tithes, rent, and two other bills. Then I logged into my Regions app; I had an unexpected expense to post on Friday that was not supposed to clear until the end of the month.

Immediately I thought, “Ugh. There goes my extra money“, but the Holy Spirit redirected my thought. 

“Give thanks,” says the Holy Spirit. 

Truthfully, my flesh didn’t want to, but I was obedient.

So, I thanked God for that unexpected expense. 

In the midst of me praising and thanking God, the enemy still tried to interfere. 

Why do you pay tithes?” I immediately shut that thought down and continued praising God. 

Then, Matthew 6:25-26 dropped in my spirit. 

““That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing? Look at the birds. They don’t plant or harvest or store food in barns, for your heavenly Father feeds them. And aren’t you far more valuable to him than they are?”

Now back to me standing in line…

As I was saying, I was getting ready to pay for brunch, not looking around or anything. Just slightly moving up as the line slightly moved…posting statuses. 

A lady walks up to me, “Excuse Ma’am. Can I pay for your brunch?” It caught me by surprise and she must’ve noticed the puzzled looked on my face…so she asked again, “Can I? Nothing fishy. Just let me pay.” 

I responded, “Sure.” She paid, I thanked her, and we went our separate ways. 

My point? This may be minor to some, but it’s major to me. That was God’s way of saying, “I got you” and confirming the verses that dropped in my spirit while I was praising Him.

Listen, refuse to be controlled by your finances. God has you. Money is limited and can only do so much. God is limitless and can do ALL things! Trust Him!!!!

Settling? 

Yesterday, I went to my usual Tuesday spot- Joe’s Crab Shack. I walked in and sat at my usual booth and prepared to order my usual entree- The Orleans Pot. It comes with crawfish, sausage, shrimp, corn, and potatoes. 
I looked through the menu. My eyes and tastebuds connected with The Rajun Cajun Steampot. It comes with the same as The Orleans Pot but instead of crawfish, it has crab legs. I thought, “Man I want crab legs, but I don’t feel like wrestling with the breaking, cracking, and getting messy and dirty.”

….and the crazy part is, I don’t really care for Joe’s crawfish because it is not as seasoned as the crawfish you may get from the guy on side of the road. I just get them because they’re easier to eat. Not as much cracking and breaking like the crab legs, and I don’t get as dirty and messy. So, long story short, I SETTLE for crawfish. 

So I sat there, going back and forth in my mind. The sweetness of the crab leg’s meat weighed heavenly on my mind….but it’s just too much work….in a restaurant anyway. I’d rather be at home when I eat crab legs.

You can’t be all pretty eating those. Lol

When my waiter came, I said, “Uhhhhhh let me get the Rajun Cajun.” He said, “No Orleans today?” I replied, “Nope, I’m stepping out of my comfort zone.”

We both laughed. 

There’s a revelation in that. 

How often do we settle for what’s easy because what we really want requires too much work? We’d rather stay with that, that we are comfortable with although it’s not satisfying. I’ve been going to Joe’s consistently for over a year now, wanting to order the steampot with crab legs. At one point I didn’t know how to crack them and even after I learned, it took too much to get to THE MEAT.

Listen, don’t give up on YOUR MEAT- your dreams, goals, and visions- because it requires a lot “breaking, cracking, and calls for you to get messy and dirty”…and requires you to step out of your comfort zone. You may endure sleepless nights , you may have to make many sacrifices, you may have to go alone, and you may feel drained and tired most times, BUT don’t give up or settle for what doesn’t satisfy you. Go get the MEAT God has told you, you can have. 

Faith without works is just like saying, “I believe you, God, but I’m not willing to put in the work to get it.”

Roll up your sleeves, come out of your comfort zone, and work!

So, you want Big Breasts? Okay….Done! 

Now, you all know I’m transparent. This is actually funny…but please read with an open mind and receive the message. 
I remember when I was 7th and 8th grade, I wanted big breasts…..mainly because my best friend had them. (Catch that.) So I started putting tissue in my bra. That continued until my freshmen year in college….when my breast started getting full and becoming what I THOUGHT they should be. 

I enjoyed them, but eventually, I had to get a breast reduction (requested by me to my doctor) in November of 2012. 

Wait a minute?

So I begged for big breasts, I got them, and then requested to have surgery to go back to small breasts? Crazy right?? Very!!!

God will give us the things we think we want just to show us that it’s not what we need. I wanted big breasts. I got them, but they came along with pains I couldn’t bear- back problems, shirts that wouldn’t button, unwanted attention, etc. 
Now, let’s go back. I told you all I wanted big breasts….mainly because my best friend had them. See, we want “stuff” because we see other folks with it, but we don’t see the pains, the sacrifices, the tears, the blood, the sweat, and the time they’ve put in. 
We see their GLORY, but we don’t know their story. 
Now, this is much deeper than breasts. Don’t miss the message being carnal- minded. My whole point is- Be content with who you are, where you are, and what you have. Although your RIGHT NOW may not be all that you’ve hoped for, but it’s yours. Instead of focusing on what you don’t have or what you wished you had, focus on growing in God. True contentment and fulfillment isn’t found in “stuff” or people. It’s found in Jesus. Until you can be content…in whatever state you’re in…you’ll always feel like you need more…or even less…to be happy.

The Word even supports this. 

“Not that I was ever in need, for I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little.”

‭‭Philippians‬ ‭4:11-12‬ ‭NLT‬‬

What are you begging God for? What is it that you want that you’ve convinced yourself that you need? Are you really open to God’s desires for your life or just your own?

Hmmmmmmm

#HeartCheck

Cabinets and Drawers

I’ve been awake since about 3:50 this morning praying and spending time in God’s presence. When I finished, I started cleaning and organizing the “stuff” in my cabinets and drawers. As I was cleaning and organizing, I realized that a lot of the contents in my drawers and cabinets were not being used, had expired, had collected dust, out of place, or just simply taking up space- CLUTTER! It’s easy to end up with a whole lot of nothing when it’s out of our sight- kept away in drawers and cabinets. (Catch that.)There was even something under my cabinet in my bathroom that I had when I first moved to Belzoni, 5+years ago. I’m in Memphis now. I’ve carried it to three new places. Shame on me. Lol 
As I started throwing stuff away, the HOLY SPIRIT reminded me how important is it to be conscious of what we keep in our hearts and minds as well. See, people can’t see our hearts and mind, so we can easily pick and choose what we want others to see. We dress things up, store away the things we don’t want others to see or things we don’t want to deal with at the moment, and display the “pretty picture.”…but see, what happens is we end up with a lot of clutter that soon pollutes so many other areas of our lives. That clutter can also prevent God from moving in our lives and doing something new. 

Today, take a moment to get quiet before God and pay attention to what is happening in your heart and in your mind. Are you holding on to unforgiveness? Do you need healing? What do you need deliverance from? Do you need to release something or even someone? What kind of thoughts are you thinking? 

Clean out “YOUR” cabinets and drawers. Protect your “space” and make sure the contents there are God-approved and not expired, “dusty”, out of order, or simply taking up unnecessary space. ❤️