Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Presentation Is Everything (part 1)

I have been contemplating about starting a vlog (video blog) on the same premise of Christian Dating. I was so excited about the initial idea I opened two accounts on two different websites for the same ministry. I was just about to get started, when all of sudden there were these thoughts:
the camera adds 10 pounds (at least) 
how will may face look under the lights 
will I need make up and how much? 
will I be accepted?
what am I going to talk about for 3-5 minutes?
will it be poignant?
will people understand me?
do I sound well?
do I talk with my eyes?
do I use too many hand gestures?
how many times do I say um in a sentence?
how long do I pause?
do I have a speech impediment?
are my teeth white enough?
have I studied long enough?
And then I laughed counting it all joy (James 1:2 KJV). How did I get this far without certain things in place? Where did the idea come from without me praying about it? If there is no peace, I wasn't about to do it. I laughed again, thinking about all of those college courses in speech, making corporate presentations in my career, and conducting staff meetings with a bunch of people needing whiskey to keep it together for an hour. Without the drink, it happened and was done well (Philippians 4:13 AMP). None of which I could have done without prayer (James 5:16 KJV). I had to laugh again.

Nevertheless, putting it in the perspective of Christian Dating, I not only recognized the enemy to get me to doubt my own abilities, I also could see how one misses out on their blessing not having the tools available to build up your own self esteem and just folding up with a bunch of excuses which is the product of listening to the aforementioned listed above (Hosea 4:6 KJV). It is a trick that is commonly referred to as the enemy because it is a product of fear and lack (1 John 4:18 AMP). These are the devices the enemy uses. Those things listed could not be used if you know who you are in Christ. Those questions of doubt would be a waste of time if you have been obedient in the things that God has said to you. If you sought the three ingredients for Kingdom Living, then you can laugh too and maintain the abundant life that you have been so richly blessed with.

This topic reminds me of a young woman who attended the same college as well as church ministry with me. She was one of the most congenial people I have ever met. She seemed to be always in a good mood and had a smile for mostly everyone. She was just a joy to be around. Nevertheless, one of the things that bothered her so much in her life that she allowed me to know about was her weight. She stood at about 5'6' and looked like she might have weighed close to 400 pounds. The weight didn't seem like it was keeping her from doing what she liked to do; nevertheless, she had the desire to be married and have children. She was already well in her thirties and was feeling that as time paced forward, her prospects were starting to look pretty bleak. One day we made a date to go to the gym. She was driving. While en route she mentioned how much she would like to start dating but decided that when he does come to find her, she would like for him to love her from the inside and then she would make the attempts to work on the outside. I figured her reasoning came from making all of the attempts in the past for some man only to find after all of the hard work to get some of the weight off, he either gives you the "friend speech" or makes sure she sees him with some other females. I didn't get into that with her only asked if God gave her instruction about her weight. She said He did and followed the admission with a lot of excuses. Me telling her to be obedient to God was overshadowed with the excuses, so I didn't say anything else about it.

The thing I heard from her that she was passionate about was getting married. It was as if she knew she had things to do and knew that she was anointed to them, at the same time she was frustrated trying to get done that which she was anointed to do but needed the husband to do it. She believed she thought she knew who the man was that she was supposed to marry. He spoke to her, according to her several times, but nothing ever came of the conversations. Or I should write, nothing that solidified a relationship that could lead any place else other than someone I met and greet every now and again. The strange thing that happened over a few months was this man became ill. Though he continued to come to church using his faith that he was healed (assumption), it was still quite visible that something was going on with him, Weeks later, he passed away. The young woman pining for his man was distraught but not so much that she couldn't continue her education and with the tasks that she was responsible for. It was her last year of school when all of this happened, just before her graduation. On the day of her graduation she was rushed to the hospital. The next day she was pronounced. She also went home to be with the Lord.

Once the grief was over, I knew there was a lesson in all of that though I had no idea what it could be.  I understood her frustration and have been frustrated listening to many men speak about what they wish for their women to look like and they themselves look as if they stood on some street corner and drank beer and smoked cigarettes all day long. It isn't very attractive, yet women are supposed to look like models all the live long day. I had to put things in perspective knowing that women were made for men and not the other way around. I also had to keep my faith at work knowing that God is good and the Father of women as well as men. Be assured, the benefits of righteousness is not gender specific.

Nevertheless, there is a point to be made about one's appearance especially if interested in dating for the purposes of marriage. To each his own, I am sure there are those that like the folds of the flesh as well as those that prefer for the person to be fit. To be clear, this is across the board. Just as much preference men have in what is attractive to them, women also have an opinion in what is attractive to us. It just seems that women can make more adjustments as age and priorities shift more so then men can. She sees his hairline diminishing and his waistline increasing but still maintains what is needed. Is that also true for the men? Nevertheless, though the outward appearance changes over time it shouldn't make a difference if the main purpose is to be pleasing to God.

I wrote about this topic before. There was a young couple with the responsibility of a ministry to contend with. In so doing, they realized in the dating process how attracted they were to each other's outward appearance. So much so that they decided to draw up a contract for the other to maintain their looks throughout their marriage. They made this contract known to their congregation. I heard about it as one of the sermons that was televised. I don't know what the other congregants could possibly be thinking, all I recall saying to myself was, they just made their marriage a little more difficult then it had to be. She would be the one having children and body changing over the years in raising those children. We found out later that he had a sweet tooth and had his own battles. They both have changed over those years and neither one mentions that contract anymore - whether it was a good idea or not.

Watching all of this and dealing with being video taped for the sake of the ministry, I had to come up with my own conclusions that would be befitting of me in Christ. Knowing that in the Old Testament, it is written that man looks at the outward appearance, but God sees the heart (1 Samuel 16:7 AMP), it allowed me to see that verse was written after the fall of man. After the fall of man, the flesh was adhered to if one didn't know any different. So if God sees the heart before anything else, I had to get my heart right for Him and not man.

Second, it is written in the New Testament, to present this body as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable unto Him (Romans 12:1 KJV). This means for us, that not only do we have to live right (being in the right places and avoiding those places that would not be beneficial ), we would also have to eat those things that would be right for us. I have learned that even with a balanced diet, vitamins can give me more energy to do more. I have also learned in the sight of God going to bed late and waking up early isn't good (Psalm 127:2 KJV). Physically is wears on the body and impedes the body from digesting food well, slowing your metabolism, and can be the cause of many mental (emotional) illnesses. Also the verse where bodily exercise profits little doesn't mean for the person not to exercise (1 Timothy 4:8 KJV). It means for the person to prioritize. Getting the heart and mind right should take precedence. If all one thinks to do is have a great looking body and everything else isn't up to par, it is a waste. How many times do we have to see people lose so much weight and we all applaud only see that weight (and then some) creep right back in less then a year. If that heart and mind isn't looked after in finding what caused for those pounds to get there, then those pounds are destined to come back.

Finally, looking at one of my favorite parables, the parable of the talents (Matthew 25:14-30 KJV), I can use this here as well. If God gives us a blessing and has told us He will be back to see what we have done with it, why then should what He has given look out of shape and flabby? What excuse will we have when we make that presentation as they did with the master. Will we use:
I didn't feel like exercising.
It's too hard.
I don't like to sweat.
I'm tired.
I have too much to do. 
I don't have the time to go to the gym like I use to.
Love me for me and not for what I look like.
I am not trying to look buff.
Its uncomfortable for me to think about having made some those excuses in the past. In the parable of talents, the man that was afraid to do anything was banished out of the master's presence where there was the gnashing of the teeth. That description sounded like hell. He had excuses too and the master wasn't impressed with any of them - apparently.

But I thought if we believed in the Lord Jesus Christ, we would be saved from that. 

Truly, if we believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, we would do better than that. Recall the first couple that had excuses and blame. Their life was cursed along with the serpent's. Seriously, we know better so let's do better.

Presentation Is Everything (part 2)

I made a presentation for a corporate meeting. I had been training a number of clients in a program the Lord gave me to develop. I was thoroughly enjoying myself seeing the manifestation unfold before me as these people changed their lives from what they use to do. It came a time when questions were being asked of the clients and sooner then I expected the executives of the corporation desired for me show them what I have been doing. Initially, I thought I was making this presentation before my supervisor and co-workers so they would know what to do if there were ever a reason why I couldn't be there. I wasn't shocked to find out the CEO and other officials would be sitting in to hear, I would have preferred otherwise.

In making the presentation, I had handouts, folders, supplies to show what I give to the clients, I had a time line, goals to establish and what has been completed. I was confident with what I knew and any questions were welcomed and answered with assurance. I couldn't be shaken. It was good.

God created the heavens and the earth. He spoke into existence all that He desired to create. When He created man, He had already established for man to have something to do. As God looked over all He had done, it seemed as if He had listed it and was checking off what was completed. He officiated it as being good. When He created man, he stopped and looked over everything else seeing that all of the animals had mates and man didn't, He caused man to fall into a deep sleep and then created woman. When completed, He presented her to him. There wasn't a question. Man made a statement officiating her to him. God established that what He had done was good (Genesis 2:18-25 KJV).

Now, we have this life that we chose way back when (Deuteronomy 30:19 KJV). We have established some things in our lives that have worked for us and others that we needed to let go. In so doing, there comes a time when we also agree with what has been written and also believe that it isn't good for us to be alone, so we pray for God to make that presentation for us or prepare us to be presented. What would those preparations be?

In the parable of 10 virgins (Matthew 25:1-10 KJV), 5 were ready for the bridegroom and 5 weren't. If all 10 had their trunks full of all of the outward things that would make them beautiful and smell wonderful, why was it necessary for them to have oil? Why would the bride groom require oil? Was it something necessary for those times and have no pertinence for these days? Isn't it peculiar that in the Old Testament the anointing is described as a holy oil that is literally smeared into a person or thing. In the New Testament the anointing is described much differently. It is said that the holy anointing is in those who believe (1 John 2:27 AMP). It is what causes talent to be extraordinary as opposed to what everyone else has. It is the peace and joy we seek in our lives and with all of that it is in righteousness. This is what prepares us for the second coming of Christ. It is what God is looking for when He sees the church. We have to look more like Him so that He will never ask of us what He asked of Adam, "where are you?" when this happens, there will be a presentation, like no other. His only begotten Son will be reunited with whom He gave His life for.

Can I get truly real for a moment? I mean like deep into the secrets of your hygiene. There are those that have said that they aren't going to shave their legs anymore. The reason these women have said this is because their men think that it is sexy for them to have hairy legs and that the stubble is too scratchy for them to deal with. So it was less work for the ladies and the men don't have to feel sandpaper snuggling against them. Let me use this analogy for that. A young man's mother asked for him to do the dishes. He detested doing the dishes and needed to find a way to get out from doing them. He thought and nothing came to mind. One evening when his mother beckoned him to do the dishes, he grumbled and complained to himself as he made his way to the kitchen. While he was in the process of doing the dishes with the attitude that he had, he dropped a dish and shattered it. "Oops," he said, not meaning to have broken the dish. "Be careful," his mother shouted back to him. Just then the thought came to him to get out of doing the dishes. He waited  for a few minutes, then took a saucer and deliberately dropped it to the floor. "Oops!", he said again. This time his mother said nothing. He waited a little longer before dropping the third item and also shattering it. "I'll clean it up", he shouted out. By this time, his mother was at the threshold of the kitchen. She looked at him disgusted and said, "you can leave. I don't need for you to do dishes for me anymore." The young man struggled to look innocent but managed to get out the words, "are you sure?" Without a reply, he left the kitchen smirking that his plan worked. Could he have been surprised that when ever he needed his mother for anything, she was never available for him? Whether she planned it that way, or just by chance, she was not available to go to his games, didn't have the money when he needed it for field trips, school functions, or when purchasing any extras that his other classmates had money for. He couldn't attend any extra-curricular activities because during that time the family didn't have transportation. How peculiar that his siblings being 1-2 years younger never plotting to get out of what was their chore always had what ever they needed for school and any other function.

How does this apply? When a woman continues to shave her legs or any part of her body consistently, there isn't razor stubble that her man will experience that he finds unattractive. The foolishness of convincing him that being hairy is better and softer just so that he won't complain will lead to a product you won't want to have to deal with. Does it look appealing for him to see your legs are hairier then his? Is it better to have the lights out when he will want to see what you look like, but because you look like Cousin It, he would rather not compare how much more hair you have then he does. God is not mocked. Being lazy about normal hygiene will be seed sown. Shave your legs, arm pits, have the Brazilian thing done, and don't forget about those whiskers. You know what I mean, ladies! Continue to do so once a week and if you are hairier then the average person, start at three times a week. If you aren't willing to do the least of this, don't complain when you get your equivalence.

Guys, the hygiene thing is colossal. You cannot try to get it together at the last minute. It has to be a habit to bathe on a regular basis. That means daily! It is of great importance to most women that there is not food in your facial hair or when the nose has been blown, that all remnants of whatever came out of your nose isn't straggling behind in the 'stache or the beard. Brushed teeth should be a given and you wouldn't think it is necessary to say including mouth wash, but just having teeth would also be a bonus. If you played it rough back in the day or just liking the contact sport of what ever it is you do as a hobby or just haven't got around to getting those teeth back in your head because of dental appointments are hard to keep or make, just do it. Or stop pestering God for you to have this gorgeous model when you look like Grizzly Adams. This is your reasonable service. It is what is expected of you...like walking. You cannot complain when the presentation received is your equivalence.

Have you prepared yourself. Can your body be presented? What does your heart look like? Has your mind been renewed daily? Is there going to be a waiting process?

Can God present you the way you are? If you were to be presented today, are you willing to live with the equivalence of who you are for the rest of your life without complaint? If you are praying and asking God when, when, when, do you have all in place, providing for the household, vision written plainly, and a plan to carry it out? It is a reasonable service that is required of you, yet you expect much when you haven't done the least of the things that has been asked of you. What say you people of God? Are you ready for the Bridegroom?


Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Got Manners?

I enjoy the work I do. I enjoy writing and drawing my observations of people. Many times I get so engrossed with what I am seeing, I forget to write or draw about it. It takes time to digest some of the things people do and don't think anything about (Proverbs 4:7 KJV). I was asked today after discussing why grown children are happy returning home to reside with their parents well after their 30's. The definitive answer came back, its how they were raised (Proverbs 22:6 KJV). The parents don't have a problem with it, then why should the children? When parents raise their children, what they become is presented to people as representations of who the parents are. This would also be true with common sense. What's common sense to one may not be with another. This is why with this subject matter, we will stay with what is universal to all.

This post is for those who would like to date for the purposes of marriage but all that you have been fortunate to converse with have been scrubs, scallywags, and dregs of society. This can be male or female. Wouldn't you like a clean cut, Christian minded, mannerly, soft spoken person with family values, high ideals and morals? [Sigh] Think of how wonderful that would be with that perfect person just for you [sigh again]. Knowing of it all being possible with God (Mark 9:23 AMP), let's see what you bring to the table. Morals? Holiness? Any righteousness left in there after dealing with the ilks of the world? Who are you?

I was listening to a bus driver tell a passenger of when he was on his route he saw a woman getting her butt beat by this guy on the street. He immediately stopped the bus to rescue this woman from her attacker. The driver was ready to give this man the beating of his life for lifting his arm to strike a woman; but he had to stop himself because the very woman he was trying to rescue had jumped on his back and was hitting him with both of her fists to defend her boyfriend. I don't know how long ago it was when that happened to him but I could hear the hurt in his voice when he was describing the scene. He concluded with, "I will never do that again." His conclusion hurt my feelings and I didn't know him, the woman he rescued, or the person he was talking to. I prayed for his heart not to be jaded and for him to hold onto the principles that his parents taught him. I didn't think of the matter any longer allowing faith to do what it does (James 5:16 KJV).

I am reminded of the matter now understanding the hearts of people who have seen or been through so much, that what they know to do is right, they stop to contemplate whether they should do it or not in order to protect themselves (James 4:17 KJV). No one likes feeling hurt or embarrassed because they put themselves out there when no one else would. Nevertheless, we serve an Almighty God who would put a variety of situations in place for us to use what we know to use. How we fare in the situation determines the outcome of where your life is right now or where it is headed (1 Thessalonians 2:4 AMP). Will you keep the ingredients for Kingdom Living or will you have to search for them again after fulfilling what the flesh would have you do?

I saw a pregnant woman on the bus. It was a hot summer day and the bus was late. All of the passengers were hot, hungry, tired and irritable. No one wanted to say anything to anyone else. The bus filled quickly. Not only was the pregnant woman not allowed to get on the bus first, when all of the seats were filled, no one gave up a seat when she did get on the bus. I thought about what we were all thinking, hoping someone else would give up a seat so that the other person wouldn't have to. We all knew what the right thing to do would be and at the same time, I thought about the pregnant woman. Why was she taking a bus? Why didn't she have favor with anyone in getting a seat? Why didn't the bus driver who was looking at her in his rear view mirror ask any of the men to get up for her? I was disgusted with the men - and not just teenage boys who could have been raised by a teen mother, but the older men weren't giving up a chair either. I got up for the pregnant woman to have a seat. Just when I did a man gave his seat for me. Was manners the issue or was she being judged?

There use to be a time when men were gentle and mannerable. They use to get up from their seat when a woman walked into a room. Outside men would tip their hats to any female that crossed their path and if she came to a puddle, the gentleman would lay his coat in the puddle so she wouldn't mess up her shoes. Purchasing the meal when going out on a date or just getting a hot dog was an automatic gentlemanly thing to do. When walking along the side walk, it was common knowledge to make sure she was on the inside of the street to be protected rather on the same side as the cars. If a man was with a woman whether married or not, there was never another man who might be interested in her ever interrupt and cause a scene. It just wasn't right to do. Peace was priority and to maintain it order was the way to go. What happened to that peace and order? What happened to the manners?

Does God care that we have manners? As long as we praise and worship Him, we are doing good - right? Yet when one looks closer in studying the Word, He does tells us to give Him thanks in all things (1 Thessalonians 5:18 KJV). If that's not manners, what is? He tells us to walk in the Spirit so not to fulfill the lusts of the flesh (Galatians 5:16 KJV). Many times, our flesh would have us do some crazy things. Such as, when someone treats us poorly, we seek revenge. Why is this crazy? The better questions is, why wouldn't you think its crazy? We are to have the habits of walking in love. Doing good no matter what. Being calm even when we would rather rant and rave. After all, keeping peace has much to do with our Kingdom Living. Even with arguing the Word tells us that it doesn't promote righteousness: and isn't righteousness one of those other crucial ingredients in Kingdom Living (Matthew 6:33 KJV)? So again, I ask you - got manners?

Lie With Me

Dr. Creflo Dollar, pastor of World Changers Ministries in College Park Georgia, preached a message that aired on CBS last Sunday, February 11, 2012. In it he was telling all those that could hear him about how to maintain your path of righteousness. He used Joseph as an example that even when he was at his lowest, he was still blessed. His brothers might have sold him as a slave but the man that purchased him, Potiphar,  trusted Joseph and allowed him to have lead over his entire household as if Joseph was the man of the house. The only thing he knew he had not that same allowance was the man's wife. There she was every day watching Joseph as her husband was away until it was too much for her to resist. He wasn't paying any attention to her. Joseph was being about the tasks that were assigned to him. To commit adultery was the farthest thing from Joseph's mind but Potiphar's wife, not having the same moral conviction saw Joseph as a means to satisfy her own lusts. (Genesis 39 KJV)

When Dr. Dollar preached this message, he said something that caused me to think and to write this entry. He described the scene with Joseph and Potiphar's wife. He said that she was after him day after day. She kept telling him the same thing, "lie with me." When Dr. Dollar made that statement a few times, he paused and said, "that sounds sort of spiritual, doesn't it?" I replied to the television screen, "uh-huh."

It  is the reason why I put this post here with Christian Singles, so when the dating process is completed and the wedding has taken place, there are no thoughts that could be entertained of any extra-marital affairs or infidelity. The idea of which would be as appalling as robbing a bank or committing a murder - its just not thought of. You see when he said, it sounds spiritual, I could already hear it when the verse stated to lie with me. Why did she say it like that? Why didn't she say sleep here or come her Joseph or any number of things that could have been just as enticing without the double entendre. It was as if she had plotted in her mind all of that time looking at this young man and though she more then likely didn't mean for the double meaning to be there - God was watching and also using the situation to test his heart.

If Joseph had circum to the beckoning of Potiphar's wife, what would transpire afterward? Do we have enough information to make that call? Would Joseph made it to emperor? Would God have trusted him with such a title? Would he have had it worse in prison? Would he have had the favor that he did?

This is why this post would have also done well in the blog Kingdom Living for mature Christians. When asking, is this all there is and one wonders why it seems all of the blessings have come to a screeching halt, it isn't God that one should wonder about but the choices that have been made. Have all of the choices made were in the path of life or lack? When we made the decision to choose life all the way back in Deuteronomy, it just didn't stop there. Life goes on with more decisions to make. In those decisions as well, we must make the acknowledgments so that life is maintained. Sometimes we think what feels good or seems right is just that without asking. God has been here since the beginning of time. He is where you would like to go and sees you where you are. Wouldn't it be just the more intelligent thing... no just common sense, to ask Him if this is the way to the life path or will it be the cause for the lack that some might be experiencing now?

If Joseph had committed adultery with Potiphar's wife, he would have to bear false witness to her husband in order to maintain the life he had before he done anything with her. Unfortunately, what would have happened is he would have lost all of what he had and more then likely his life as well (James 2:10-11 KJV). With her saying it the way she said it, Joseph could hear God talking to him. Lie with me, wasn't as enticing as she may have thought it would be. All Joseph could hear was telling the lie that would cause him to lose it all. Would that all men hear this lesson. When the temptation is too great - run.

Which brings me to the quandary when I meditated on the subject matter. The Word tells us to resist the devil and he will flee (James 4:7 AMP). This woman was after Joseph on a daily basis as if her intentions was to ware him down. He more then likely was at the point of contemplating whether he could just make out for a little bit. The assumption comes from what transpires afterward.  He explained to her why it would be wrong and how her husband trusted him. Wasn't that resistance enough? Why didn't she stop? Why didn't she flee? It is why I think Joseph was contemplating on the matter. He didn't avoid her. He didn't go to other places in the home or be around the other workers. It was getting to him, so when she grabbed that coat, he had a decision to make. Was the matter wearing on his mind? He did what he was supposed to do - right? It is written that when one looks at the opposite sex with desire, adultery was already committed in the heart (Matthew 5:28 AMP). Meaning, that the intent to do wrong was already there. He had to be dancing with the idea in his mind or how else could the accusation that Potiphar's wife have that he raped her have stuck. Wouldn't the fact that he never succumbed to her advances make him a free man? Wouldn't God have given him favor to get out of the mess that he was in? If his intentions were truly honorable, the accusations would have been proven false.

Yes, it was a spiritual decision and the outcome should make one think about his or her own life as we grow in Him as a single individual or as a couple when one decision will affect the entire household. Make sure that what it is you are about to do will lead you on the right path and maintains your steps where they should be (Proverbs 12:28 KJV).





Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Baby Daddy is Nasty, Baby Mama has Drama

Apologies are necessary here. In writing this blog with the understanding of everyone starting from a clean slate with Jesus at the helm - no matter how you got there, we are there on the same path. The apology comes in with these entries being for those that continued to stay on the path of righteousness and the ones that went back and forth to resume the old life style that should have passed away and forgotten about (2 Corinthians 5:17 AMP). There is no condemnation here for the choice that you made - we have all been there in one form or another. If its not contemplating whether to stay with the one we chose (without marriage), its hoping that what is obviously horrific to most, isn't as bad as it seems.

So here we are with the bucket full of cleaning products. We (you, me, and Jesus) might not get all of those cobwebs and skeletons out of that closet to resume your prayer life - but its going to be a good start if you stick with it. By that I mean getting that slate clean again. Forgiving yourself and know that once you have made that confession God has forgiven you too (1 John 1:19 KJV).

This entry started with a woman who I did not know. She sat next to me at the library where I was gathering research for a Christian dating guide. I had just finished a rough draft of the book cover and she happened to notice the title. She asked about the contents of the book and I started to tell her. I was so encouraged by her words. She then said, "I hope you have a section about shacking up. My daughter wants to live right but he just won't marry her." I didn't have a chapter like that and wasn't thinking along those lines because  the assumption of being on the same page, trying to be pleasing unto God took more precedence in me then anything else. Sure I made some colossal mistakes and wish I could have turned back the clock but for the most part, when I found what I did wrong, I did make the effort to make it right. He is just too real for me not to. I believed that once saved, the path for us all would be the same of joy and peace in Him (Romans 14:17 KJV). How naive of me. I had to change my whole frame of thought and the outline of the book. Once I did, it didn't seem as simple as all of that, so I put it down. Jesus said His way is easy (Matthew 11:30 KJV). When it gets difficult, I go to Him to get that ease back. This blog was the beginning of that ease.

Let's begin at the top and work our way down. This would be the man. Why? Because God created him before He created the woman. The man grows not just physically but spiritually. We can all see the stature of a man and his physical age, but that does not tell us of his maturity level and what he has on his mind and in his heart - does it? It is this maturity in Christ that gives him the tools and skills to be able to be the head of a household and the head of a woman. If he is without Him, he then gets into the territory of dictatorship and tries to force or control his spouse into doing what he wants. There is no love in that because the One who personifies love was not invited in to show what to do (1 Corinthians 13: 4-8 KJV). It is why when there are all of those babies with all of those different baby's mamas, it tells everyone this man has no control over himself. It also tells everyone what state the woman is in (Ephesians 4:14 KJV).

Which is the second part of this union, the body. This is the woman. She is the one who is managing the household and makes sure that the wishes of the head is being carried out. As archaic as that may sound, it only is because it has never been seen as being up to date. Keep reading and you will see how these principles are still in use and good in this 21st century.

For the longest time I pined for the days of Mayberry RFD, when mothers were at home for the children and the fathers worked to support the family. It was expected and anything extra-marital was considered something not to be done and if caught, it and the man were shunned. To feel like an outcast was not a matter that was flaunted, if done at all. Unwed mothers were sent to have their babies elsewhere. Not so much of being embarrassed and having the family disrespected but for the protection of the next generation not to repeat the same behavior. It was apparent that things were changing when it was known that President Robert F. Kennedy was having an affair with Marilyn Monroe back in the day. The bandwagon thinking was, if the President was doing it, it can't be all bad. Even after the President got killed did the behavior detour. In fact, The behavior became so casual and accepted that women would say, boys will be boys. Yes they will be, but why would a woman marry a boy?

Which brings us to Gloria Steinem and the Women's Lib movement. I believe it got its start from women working menial jobs for their husbands. The husbands to go through college for him to make a better life for the family but once finished he found other women who were as educated as himself. He left the woman who supported him through school for another and the wife had no recourse but to start all over again but this time with a load of children. There was no alimony back then for mid to low income dysfunctional families or compensation for women when left to fend for themselves. Child support was a wish and not something that could be enforced (1 Timothy 5:8 KJV). Women have learned and most understand to be independent at the onset instead of looking for validation from a man. These principles don't stray away from the scriptures. There is nothing wrong for a woman to build up the skills and talents God has given to her. It makes her even more of a help to the man that finds her; in fact, improving on those skills upgrades the type of man that she was created for. Can you see that?

It is only demeaning if you put yourself in that role to be demeaned. If you look at it the way God intended, its empowering for you to get an education. Focus on the things that give you joy and peace. The scrubs and wolves (scallywags and dregs of society) will see you as more of a threat then someone they would normally look to conquer. This goes both for men and women. The better educated you are the more you will expect from yourself. Of course you will desire someone who understands you - your equal. Get it?

The drama comes having expectations that you aren't willing to do yourself. People have used their talents to get fame and fortune without the education. The fame and money have caused them to hear the voice of God less and less. The Word tells us that we cannot serve Him and mammon (Matthew 6:24 KJV). When this verse is disregarded believing that he/she can still have it all is a delusion. God is not mocked.

I wrote an article about Whitney Houston and included all of the royalty of music that has also left this earth sooner then anyone thought. Yet as much as I go over the information that has been given to the public, the article fits in this post as well. With all of the commercials and campaigns against drugs and living a life that is destructive, how does anyone think that he/she can beat what others before them couldn't? Again, God is not mocked. Mistakes don't have to be repeated if your intentions are good. Hard as that lesson maybe to learn using the examples that I have, it is necessary. Don't let this history keep repeating itself.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Rejection


Now it isn't something that people enjoy going through. So many times when it comes about, it starts with a pacifying statement that goes something like..."it isn't you, it's me." As if, that's suppose to make it all better especially when you were thinking that everything was going well!

So here you are experiencing the pain of being rejected. What happened? How could you have made it better? Why didn't God tell you that this was going to happen? How are you suppose to recover from this and go into any other relationship with a healthy outlook? Will this person reject or leave you too? How do you know it won't happen again? All of these questions continue to run its course because the flesh has been resurrected (2 Corinthians 5:17 KJV).

During this time, as bad as this may sound, it feels good to snuggle and caress the flesh just making yourself feel better. But we all know where this will end up. I am going to paint this picture for you to give some sort of visual. It is so humbling to actually write this out for all who reads this to see; nevertheless, it is for the betterment of the body of Christ so I will make the sacrifice (notice, the flesh would have me do otherwise).

I have probably written about this before, but it bares repeating for the sake of this post. When the world wide web had started about 16 years ago, I was discovering all sorts of search engines by placing any kind of topics I could think of just to see what would pop up. In so doing, I discovered chat lines and that I could communicate with anyone I wished any where. I was elated  that there were sites for pen pals from all over the world, chat rooms, and relationship sites as well. Chat rooms used to be a big deal back then but it was also a place for predators. Soon it was discovered that people are more dishonest on the web, then they are in person. I enjoyed a site where one could write to all sorts of people. There was this guy that liked my profile and requested for me to write to him. He was from Florida and very intelligent. He wrote some of the best letters that had me thinking before I wrote back or laughing at something that he spotted while writing to me. We were enjoying each other's company until he requested a picture. That was something I didn't know how to do yet. I wasn't computer savvy and even if I was, technology wasn't as friendly as it is now. I tried to stall so I didn't appear to be some sort of an idiot. While I was trying to work it out, he had sent me his picture. Yikes! Would be putting it mildly! There wasn't anything to write home about there. I couldn't believe all of this time, I was writing to him and he was contemplating coming up here out of state to see me. My first thought was, "where can I go? Where would I hide?" I didn't write him back immediately. I had to take account of what I was thinking and make some spiritual adjustments.

How dare I? Here is a man that was writing to me with humor and intelligence, just what any woman would like to read about and get to know better. We shared and took the time out of our days just to see if there was an email there waiting to open. It was one of those highlights that one looks forward to. How dare I be so superficial and not give this man a chance just because he looks like... uh...well, we all aren't appealing to everyone. I never thought I was as shallow as all of that until the day I saw this man's picture. I was ready to do the lets be friends speech.  Instead, I squashed all of that and continued writing to him. I even was honest about trying to understand how I could send him a picture of myself. It took a couple of days after I asked a computer student how to do it. I had the picture saved on a file and announced to this man, that I have the picture and will send it to him. He was so excited and kept writing statements back every few minutes like: are you sending it now? I didn't get it. Were you going to send it today? Where is it? His anticipation was flattering to say the least. I finally pushed the send button... or I thought I had when he inquired with the first question. But the second inquiry led me to believe that he never got it, so I sent it again. But when he asked, if I was going to send it today, I stopped and asked the student again if I sent it correctly. The student said that I did. So I asked that guy, what sort of game was he playing? I told him I asked someone who knew about computers how to do it; therefore, you already have my picture. What is going on? I didn't get a reply back. I continued with other matters I had to do on the computer, checking periodically if he sent an email. I figured he was busy with something that distracted him away from answering me and tried not to think about it as much.

It had to be about 30-45 minutes before I got a reply. It was longer then the usual letters I got from him. At first, I was pleased that it was so long...and then I read the first couple of sentences and realized that I was being dumped! Me! He was dumping me!!! As I continued to read, he based this departure of our correspondence on the image he received of me. He said I wasn't what he was expecting. I WASN'T...WHAT?!!! He looked like his face was dragged across hard miles of rocky road and bandaged up only to find what was underneath was worse. REALLY?!! I couldn't believe it! I was ready to write back some pretty scathing language setting Christianity aside for the moment. I wasn't what he expected? How could he have wrote back at all? I had to talk myself into writing back to him when he sent his picture. I was being kind, nice, gentle, Christ-like! I made an account of not being superficial and shallow. I was determined to see the heart of the man rather then his outward appearance and he writes back, I wasn't what he expected!!! SERIOUSLY?!!

I recall leaning back in the chair. I hadn't finished reading the entire letter because I had to recuperate from his audacity. Once recovered, I continued reading. He mentioned how long he asked for my picture and how long it took me to send it to him. He wrote that if I had sent it sooner, emotions wouldn't have been involved and this wouldn't hurt as much. We had been writing to each other for about a month. My emotions were not involved like he was writing. The only emotion I was feeling at that moment was revenge. I wanted him to know that I thought he was U-GAH-LY when I first saw that thing he sent and I was doing him a favor. A FAVOR, you CRETAN DOG! Jerry Lewis, in the Nutty Professor, looked better. He had a Moe (from the 3 Stooges) haircut. I thought it was a joke! All I had to do was push the send button for him to know what I really thought of how he looked. Just send it! Send it! SEND IT!!!

There it was, another dose of reality about what I still needed to clean up in my life. My ego was bruised. I had never been rejected before and the initial reaction to what he did was for me to plot revenge? I understood that I wanted him to hurt as much as he hurt me. But what was that going to prove? How was I suppose to feel better afterwards? How was I  suppose to know that he was really hurt, him being over 3500 miles away? It was foolishness and I knew it looking at the empty inbox, feeling that would be the last IM of intelligence and humor I was ever going to get. Yeah, that's the enemy tempting me to give depression a place of residence. It wasn't going to happen. I don't get depressed. The usual statement after, I don't get depressed is....I get even, wasn't going to work for me now; even though getting even sounded pretty good to say.

I use to wonder why would it be so difficult for some people not to take rejection well. Why would there be stalkers and those who just had to convince the one doing the rejecting to change their mind and give the relationship another chance. Could it have anything to do with the basic family structure? No one likes to think about the health of a child if there wasn't a whole family raising him or her. We are more comfortable thinking that children are resilient and will bounce back. It just doesn't look to be the case anymore. With fewer fathers being married to their babies' Momma, there is a feeling that children don't deal with because they don't understand it. It is a void. To the parents that have chosen to live together without the benefit of marriage, the child learns of both parents. And when its easier to walk away because there is no legal document binding the two, the child then learns of those first feelings of rejection and does not have the tools to manage how to deal with those feelings in his everyday life. Many parents without the structure and discipline of an education wouldn't see this. Their answer simply is, my parents weren't together and I came out just fine. You'll be alright. Yet the son without a mother has learned to resent women or is very timid around them. The daughter without a father is either very promiscuous or is very timid around men. Rejection from a relationship with either of these people will be the decision chosen to be timid, resentful, or promiscuous. How can one become whole again?

Oddly, I am finding that there are those that refuse to be alone once out of the relationship. For whatever the reason, being on the rebound is their answer. The reality of that is the rebound answer is only temporary and eventually as a believer you will have to deal with the open wound. The mature believer knows that stalking the other to convince them to try again is not the answer. You are only confirming why the relationship was severed in the first place. Like it or not, there is a scripture in the bible that is on the side of the one doing the rejecting (1 Corinthians 7:15 AMP). You just can't make someone change their mind. Whether the person feels pity for the one pleading or just says what you want to hear, its only temporary and the love is not there. You can't create for love to be there if the other truly doesn't want you. Know that caring about someone and loving that person is the same thing. The way you've been treated is proof. If he/she doesn't love you, he/she doesn't care about you either (1 Thessalonians 4:1-9 AMP). There is no point of going over the good times in the initial stages of the relationship. Neither of you knew the other back then and being on your best behavior took precedence.

It is why I write this blog. When we date as born again believers, if we put God first, dating wouldn't be so difficult. It doesn't take all of that effort to be likable. The love of God is oozing out of your pores because of all of the time you have spent with Him. He speaks for you to know what to say and do. The heart doesn't have a chance to get hurt because of your regular practices with Him. He sees what you don't. So before him/her starts pouring on all of the charm and batting the eye lashes, God set the ground work because you prioritized and put Him first. He will never leave you nor forsake you (Hebrews 13:5 KJV). Because you know that, He has the perfect person for you that has the same mindset of never leaving as well. Just trust Him.






Do You Really Know How Good God Is?

Yesterday the blahs tried to give me suggestions to entertain. You know what they are. Its crap that try to put you in some melancholy border line on depression mood. Most often, I don't have the time nor inclination to give asinine, stupid suggestions any credence but this time for whatever the reason, I started to wonder and ask God a bunch of those why questions.

Before continuing, I must preface for you to think of a child asking an adult those why questions. Some adults find this enjoyable to be able to teach the child lessons that he/she will never forget. Others find why this and why that annoying because one answer feeds another question. On the perspective of listening to the why question, say  that 3 letter word three times. What does it sound like to you? This is why when asking God anything, I have to come correct with His Word. It sounds better and more often then not, the answer I usually find in the question. It is so peculiar!

Back to giving credence to asinine suggestions (Ephesians 4:27 KJV). Its the suggestions that come in your mind for you to have those blahs. Such lunacy as:
-You will never be able to marry again.
- Having children, at your age!
- You will never find the right person, in these days and times.
- Always looking and never finding anyone.
- Isn't anyone good enough?
- Shouldn't you lower your standards by now? You aren't 20 anymore.
- You have too many issues.
- Your obsessing to much.
- You have a complex.
- It's not them, it's really you.
- Why not just grab a dunderhead and change him. At least you'll be married and will have something to do.
- Do you just want to work your entire life?
- How come everyone else has someone and you don't?
- You know, beauty fades and once that's gone, then what?
- You shouldn't have broken it off with what's his/her name. That could have been your only prospect.
- So what, she 's pregnant. Are you too good to raise someone else's child?
- She won't sleep with anyone else once you marry her.
- Try it out, go ahead! She might be the only one for you.
- Alright, he doesn't have a job and lives with his mother, but if you date him he'll only be with you.
- Com'mon, he's a minister! That's a guarantee that he'll be faithful! What other prospects do you have? None.

These are some suggestions that have either worked in your own mind or in others who have absolutely nothing positive to say but had to make their way to you to say one of the aforementioned statements (Ephesians 6:12 KJV). I have looked at said persons in a way to express (but not to open my mouth): you had to walk past several people interrupt the thought provoking conversation I was having to ask (or state) that moronic drivel? (yes, I can make my face say all of that). With that expression, they take their tired, asinine, stupid, message sending, self back where they came from.

In a different blog, I wrote a  post, entitled, "Crap Can't Attach Itself". I write about suggestions made that are entertained. Once entertained and if its not seeds of love, joy, peace, or righteousness, you've decided to feed a beast that will rob you of your Kingdom (Matthew 6:33 KJV). If the suggestion is not from God's Word, you will soon be surrounded with trouble which brings fear. Can you now see some of those why questions you had, answered?

In my younger spiritual years (full grown physically), I believed the Lord presented me to a man who was obviously interested. It seemed though, every time he tried to approach me something would detour him in another direction. It was the oddest thing but I kept my peace about it. A few weeks later, I was in this bible book store and came upon Stormie  O'Martian's book, "The Power of a Praying Wife". Believing to be led of the Lord, I purchased the book and got to work. I studied it, highlighted pertinent parts of it, meditated on it, and even wrote prayers to use over and over again. It became a part of my daily confessions for over a year. Why? I wasn't married. Why would I do such a thing?

There happened to be a benefit that God saw to what is now called archaic. It was for the woman's protection and the other is for the man. The reason I write the woman first is because, while it is often preached by a man that woman was made for the man and not the other way around, God has not forgotten her. He is her father too and would not have her to perish. If she (we) are obedient to His will and His way, we too have the promises that have been given to man.

For the woman: are you willing to be the help that he needs? Would you change to do God's will for that to happen? Would you sacrifice what is necessary? Do you know how to test each voice to know that it is of God and not your flesh, will, and/or emotion (1 John 4:1-6 KJV)? If you can answer those questions definitely without wavering, then stand and be patient. No matter what....BE PATIENT! No why questions afterwards. Why questions at this point feeds the beast. You should already have the answers and assured by what you know (Isaiah 32:17 KJV). What manifests from why questions afterward is proof that you have lost your confidence and your faith is wavering (James 1:6-7 KJV). Anyone attracted to that is something you do not want to date. Understand?

Now back to the man that I was presented to. I noticed that he had this really nice car, so of course, he had a good job. But this not approaching me was starting to get worrisome. He approached other women. He laughed, conversed, and joked around with other women. Because of what I saw, it didn't take long before I gave credence to every suggestion I heard about him and questioned if I was actually ready to marry again. One so called friend stated, "if he didn't come and talk to you that means he's not interested. Every man interested in me comes and talks to me." Then she had this expression as if she was hoping I believed her. She continued to talk and I knew it was to discourage me. The funny part about what she was saying is, I never told her anything about this man, yet she made it her assignment to convince me to not believe what God said to me.

It wasn't until much later after sorting through and coming out of all that crap did I realize, God had already placed a foundation of protection answering my prayers. That man could have come as he already was, but instead of that list that we use to make for a man to fit into, I prayed according to God's Word. Yes, I might be made for him yet is he meeting what God's will is in his life and if he doesn't, it will affect everything in both of our lives whether I have all of these talents he needs or not.

We all change. Temperament, tolerance, ideas, appetites, and desires will change as well. If not in agreement even temporarily, what direction will those changes go? They won't be together because the Word tells us this (Amos 3:3 KJV). Prayer must be in place to avail much (James 5:16 KJV). That man pontificating whether he should speak to me or not was to my benefit. Stop listening to that biological clock that not even the world speaks about anymore. Concern yourself not about graying temples or crow's feet around your eyes. Those are suggestions that you do not want to manifest and have to go through. Remain in peace. Keep your joy. Guard you heart. This is just a fraction of seeing God's goodness upon your life and mine. too.