The Fight is Real

If you live long enough and have accepted the invitation to adulthood you will appreciate the fact that not every fight requires your undivided attention. All fights are not created equally so you cannot enter the ring before understanding the opponent’s strategy. There are battles that choose you, but your maturity must know whether you are attending or declining.

There are fights that turn up on your doorsteps, others knock on your door, some call you on the phone, and the ugliest ones jump out from behind the bushes scaring you to death. Even if you react in self-defence there is a great chance you can be severely wounded and left to die. All fights are not created equally.

Do not get pulled into silly and petty arguments. Fights can be costly when words and emotions get in the way. One thing has been proven when it comes to fights – everyone walks away with scars and there are no winners. The emotional scar is a reminder that you fought in a battle that was not intended for you to fight.

Ephesians 4:26-27&29 says: “ In your anger do not sin. Do not let unwholesome talk come out of your mouth, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs.” Sticks and stones may break your bones but leaning on God in moments like these would not hurt you. Do not allow angry words to get stuck inside of you.

Of all the words a person most likely will ever regret are the ones spoken when they are angry. “The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to give strong support to those whose heart is blameless towards Him.” 2 Chronicles 16:9 . When the battle chooses you, hand it over to God.

At the end of the day, let God rule your heart and mind. Forgive because God has forgiven you more times than you can count. Overlook whatever you can. My mom used to say, ‘Anything for peace sake.’ There are times you just have to let it go for peace to reside.

Someone said, “Reconciliation takes two people. Forgiveness only takes one.” Do not wait on another person to ask for forgiveness before you forgive. It only takes one person to forgive. The only other option is to live with bitterness.

Romans 12:20-21 The Message (MSG)

“Our Scriptures tell us that if you see your enemy hungry, go buy that person lunch, or if he’s thirsty, get him a drink. Your generosity will surprise him with goodness. Don’t let evil get the best of you; get the best of evil by doing good.”

Has the Train left the Station?

My soon to be released book is dedicated to my mother Mrs. Bernice Philip who has since gone on to receive her greatest reward in Heaven. I call to remembrance the genuine faith that was first in my grandmother and my mother and now in me. I know they both would have been proud of my accomplishment and for that I am grateful. My legacy is rich in Godly faith.

Mothers, our role in the home is more valuable than the jobs we hold, the money in the bank, or our status. Our names may not be mentioned in the top 100 greatest influencers of the world , but our children and grandchildren will rise and applaud us if we sacrifice and do it right.

Children will learn everything they need to learn by shadowing us. They will shadow us only for a limited time though until he or she feels like hopping on the next train that is leaving the station. Being consistent and genuine leaves no time for double standards. Children are imitators and they will imitate our behavior over obeying our instructions.

My mother’s life was very consistent and genuine despite her many challenges. She lived her life as an open book before her children. We saw her faith withstand everything that was meant to destroy her, but it did not prevent her teaching us to have our own walk with God.

We were surrounded with love and discipline, and my mom invested time and effort into educating us. Who I am today is by no means an accident. I shadowed my mother’s disciplined life while raising my own children. Like my mom I raised my children to love and fear God above everything else. My greatest joy is being alive today so my grandchildren can get to know me.

Four things I consider are important in raising children – Love, Prayer, Discipline and Example. Today we are witnessing the effect of a single virus bringing the entire world to a halt and these four ingredients are being recommended as a recipe to healing the world.

Love – it is not all about you. You can be a healthy person, but you can carry the virus to someone who is not. What you intentionally or unintentionally do will have a long-lasting effect on others. When someone else’s happiness is your happiness – that is love.

Prayer – people everyone is praying. From the Palace to the hospital to the nursing home to the schools to the funeral homes to the graveside to the grieving relatives. Everyone understands the effectiveness of prayer. Keep calm and pray for the world.

Discipline – staying home saves lives. Working on the frontline is stressful and difficult. The healthcare workers are overwhelmed and frustrated. Everyone must choose one of two pains – the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. The easiest decision you will ever have to make.  

Example – the best life is a life that makes the world a better place for everyone. The train with our children on it will one day leave the station called home. Make sure you gave them best directions.

Four things are important in raising children – Love. Prayer. Discipline. Example.

My Unsung Hero

Smile Alert

When you are smiling the whole world smiles with you. And if you are laughing keep on laughing. The sun comes shining through.

We thank God for friends who bring on our smiles while social distancing. Great time to call your parents. Go for a walk. Read a book. Eat some ice-cream.

But for now – it’s time to SMILE with me 😊

All we need is love, but a little chocolate now and then changes the atmosphere and with a blink of an eye it’s the weekend.

Take a break from doing all that was mandatory and enjoy the view.

Image in the Mirror

Life is like a mirror. A mirror reflects what you look like, and the uncomfortable truth is – you cannot argue with what you see. What you see is what others see too. Mirrors do not lie. A dirty mirror shows a blur version of yourself. So, if you look in a mirror and you do not like what you see – do not blame the mirror.

As children we were excellent at playing dress up putting on our parent’s clothes. We looked in the mirror and mastered the art of role-playing. We had no fashion sense as we put together anything that was easily accessible while having lots of fun among ourselves. Looking into the mirror made it the highlight of the moment as it drew lots of laughter as we cleverly imitated the owner of the outfits.

When we were children, we imitated what we saw, who we saw, and how we viewed it. As children we mimicked every character good or not so good in our village/community. The more accurate you were to bring the character to close likeness is more laughter and accolades you received and the longer your performance lasted.  

Life is a stage that we must all cross over whether you an introvert or an extrovert. Whether you fail or pass. Once your heart is beating the camera is recording your every move even if you are camera shy. When we were children we behaved like children and dress up was the game, but we are no longer children.

If you look in the mirror and you do not like what you see, you have no one to blame but yourself. Mirrors do not lie. We are now grown ups. We are the ones fortunately or unfortunately the next generation will be mimicking and playing dress up.

As adults we should be seeing things more clearly. We are not squinting peering through the windows of our childhood bedrooms looking on at others. We are now the main actors while we are being judged by others whether it appeases you or not. A child somewhere will be mimicking you and I as they observe our characters. Will it be positive, or will it be for laughter? Only you and I know the answer.

To be fully transparent we need to trust God to help us to be fountains of life rather than fountains of hate and deception. We do not see clearly all the time while fighting off darkness, but continuous improvement is better than trying to be perfect. No secrets are hid. On our final day all our best kept secrets will be revealed.

There is nothing we can magically do to erase yesterday but we can stop ourselves from falling down a very deep well of regrets. As we breathe right now, someone just took their last breath. Sometimes, we never get to say “goodbye” but saying “hello” is a great way to start a new day.

Someone said, “If you are looking for that one person who will change your life, take a look in the mirror.”

Be Brave Enough to Heal

Sometimes you can just be the frosting of someone else’s anger. A spoken word, a dropped feather, a simple smile, a glance in the wrong direction are sometimes just a few unassuming things that can create friction between two people. When episodes like these occur be assured that the anger did not originate with you. You are just the top layer of that person’s anger.

Proverbs 22:24-26 says, “Do not hang out with angry people; do not keep company with hotheads. Bad temper is contagious – do not get infected.” The Bible has instructions for everything you can possibly face off in life. In other words – when someone is rude or acts like a bully, do not stoop to their level.

Isaiah 53:4 says, “Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows.” God wants to heal our wounds and take our pain and hurt from us. You know how you love your children so much, that you wish you could take their pain or suffering from them? Well, that is how much love God feels for us.

He loves us so much that He paid the price for our emotional healing on the cross. Hanging on to fear, hurt and pain can actually block your healing and many opportunities to soar above the mess. Why would anyone want to keep a diary of hurts, pain, rejection, and years of abuse? That is unthinkable.

It is like dropping dirty laundry on your bed week after week while tossing around in bed at nights trying to get a good night rest. Sleep will evade you even with the help of sleeping aids.

Alternative choices: Be honest and allow the Lord to heal your wounds. Allow yourself to release the painful emotions to the Lord.

#2: It is okay to cry, weep and let the hurt come out as you hand them over to the Lord. Holding on to the pain and hurt will limit your potential.

It is disturbing to carry around a heavy suitcase filled with years of painful memories. You should not allow anyone to have so much power over you to keep you stuck in their dysfunction. Bad things happen to good people and it is irresponsible to wait for the bad things in life to go away. Accept it as part of growth.

Stuff happens everyday. Each day is a new day to do something that your future self will thank you. No matter what the circumstances may look like today know the power lies within you to make it either a happy ending or a miserable ending.

Refuse to become stuck in the wind of uncertainty. The school of hard knocks is designed to bring out the best in you. It teaches you the difference between ordinary and extraordinary. Those ugly scars can be turned into sparkles leaving glitter everywhere you walk.

Guard your unguarding moments. Guard your responses. Guard your heart.

The Lord restored the fortunes of Job when he prayed for his friends, and He increased all that Job had lost. May your ending be like Job after you pray for those who have caused you emotional pain – prepare for rebuilding. Be brave enough to heal yourself.

Hang in There

Some of us easily slide into worry mode before realizing that we are being held hostage to something we have no control over. We spend an exorbitant amount of time thinking about situations and problems in our lives. We start to fret over small matters which grow into huge fears which make our brain unable to shut down.

For a thought to bring on anxiety it first must have started as a small bit of an uneasy feeling. It is like one day unintentionally dropping a tiny seed in some dirt. Waking up to see the seed growing from the ground with its roots fixed firmly in the soil. When this happens, if left intact the seed will one day become a tree making it exceedingly difficult to cut down.

Worrying is mentally draining. When left unattended it will steal your sleep, your happiness, your life meanwhile taking deep root in your garden of love. Have you ever tried to hug someone or tell someone I love you and you felt like you just made contact with a wall? Worrying really is a little more complicated than dropping a seed in some dirt because it deals with our raw unfiltered emotions.

If we find ourselves worrying about our home issues, finances, relationships etc. – we must also remember that if you do not like who you are becoming because of all these elements – changing the way you deal with life is always an option. We are not trees. We can be placed in an environment, but the environment does not have to be in you. We do everything we can to manage the insecurity.

Look for the beauty in yourself and do not allow what is happening around you to get inside of you. To break a habit, you must take control of what you are doing and begin doing something positive.

Being consistent in whatever we do is the key to winning or losing the war. Both take active commitment. It is okay if your tummy hurts for fear but decide what matters most and do it.

I hope you never believe that other people have it easier than you. Where we are right now is God’s place for your life and mines. Together we will continue to obey God. Love from where we are. Keep on believing that God has a better plan than worrying. He encourages us to come and tell Him everything that is troubling us. God is our life

Confidence in God is like a little seed when planted – it will grow into a big oak tree. Pray because He is listening. God makes everything beautiful in its time. We are clothed with strength and love and will begin to laugh without fear of the future.

Let us root for each other and watch each other grow. Hang in there. The Lord will fight for you, you need only to be still. All we need to decide is what kind of seed to plant (fear or faith) with the time that is given to us.

Courage is Beautiful! My Book is Coming Soon!

Viruses make us feel sick. It spreads like the flu, or a cold or cough. If a person sneezes or coughs, germs that are inside the body come outside of the body and send germs into the air. That is why it is important to stand six feet apart from people in the public domain. You do not want to breathe in germs that are in the air.

Now permit me to stretch my imagination a bit. We live in a world with other humans who sneeze and cough negative words, emotions, and attitudes that are releasing airborne bacteria that show up in their actions towards us. These germs feel like a bad cough attempting to destroy the air sacs of hope for many generations to come.

Intensive Care Unit Time: Politely excuse yourself from anything or anyone that steals your joy, purpose, and self-confidence. You cannot change the people around you, but you can change who you choose to spend time with. Avoid as much as you can any pitfalls and potholes that take the wind out of you.

Keep bugs of disappointment from occupying your mind by regularly purging your thinking with the promises of God. Use your creativity as a hand sanitizer after interacting with infected people. Try not to touch your mouth by repeating negativity. Keep your eyes away from other people’s views of you. Bacteria kills purpose.

Let your integrity bring out the best version of yourself, and God will bring people who will add value into your life without adding clutter. Surround yourself with people who will bring you solutions and not problems.

Stay Safe: Keep doing whatever you must do even if no one is watching. Do it not to be recognized. Do it even if you do not want to. Do it if it is easy or hard. Just keep doing it.

God can use your disadvantages to bring you into your greatness season. In every storm there is an opportunity to clear the path. Avoid falling into the ugly spirit of comparison – it kills your laughter.

God do not like ingratitude so refuse to be petty when life throws you a curve ball. The year 2020 showed up disguised as a horrible nightmare. The best thing you can do is to stop trying to figure it all out. You cannot go back and change the beginning of the year, but your true power lies in how you will change the ending.

We have not lost time. It took everything we have faced to bring us to where we are today.

As for me, despite the virus and the people I encountered along the path I grew into becoming a published author after my manuscript was accepted by reputable publisher in the US. I read this quote somewhere before “God has a tendency of picking up a nobody, to become a somebody, in front of everybody, without asking anybody.”

I spent less time wondering if I am good enough and took a risk in pursuing my dream. Courage is beautiful.