In Humility!

In Humility!

The path of life leads upward for the prudent to keep them from going down to the realm of the dead. The LORD tears down the house of the proud, but he sets the widow’s boundary stones in place.The LORD detests the thoughts of the wicked, but gracious words are pure in his sight. The greedy bring ruin to their households, but the one who hates bribes will live. The heart of the righteous weighs its answers, but the mouth of the wicked gushes evil.The LORD is far from the wicked, but he hears the prayer of the righteous. Light in a messenger’s eyes brings joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the bones. Whoever heeds life-giving correction will be at home among the wise. Those who disregard discipline despise themselves, but the one who heeds correction gains understanding. Wisdom’s instruction is to fear the LORD, and humility comes before honor. Proverbs 15:24-33 NIV

It is with great humility that I acknowledge the quest I’ve taken upon myself is going to be the biggest challenge experienced in my life.

Though there are some who may be hesitant to grasp the reality of a potential presidential run by me, others have embraced the idea to the point of being willing to board the bandwagon that as yet, has no wheels. I am thoroughly humbled by their trust and support and candidness.

I remember saying to my walking buddy, that in this place and time (as always with me), I need people to help with my campaign, but I don’t want anyone around who is simply going to agree with everything I say. I need people in my life right now who will question everything I do–to ignite critical thinking about everything I say or do. I’m not afraid of correction and when I’m wrong, I’ll be the first to admit it.

There is much I do not know about undertaking the challenges of a presidential run, but I’m an avid researcher and know how to say, “Uncle” and call upon others who have the knowledge and expertise that I don’t. I’m willing to learn and work hard to earn the trust and respect of those who believe in me and to maintain their trust and respect.

One person expressed their concern about me risking trading my faith because of all the unethical behavior associated with politics or compromising my stance with regard to biblical principles that I teach and write about–prolifically. I appreciate her concern and addressed it and she was assured that I would do nothing without putting the issue before The Lord and would obey Him.

Now, I realize that my belief in the Bible and relationship with Jesus Christ may cause some to halt–mid-stream in a desire to support my run and I can certainly understand it. But let me say this much to clear the air before we even start to put those wheels on the bandwagon. I have not changed my views about what God has said and won’t change my views about what God has said. I recognize that people–every human being capable of making a logical decision–have a right to do so without my intervention. Though I may not agree with their lifestyle or decisions, none of that will stop me from loving them as a human being and praying for them to receive God’s best for their lives.

God is pro-choice (giving us all free-will and not forcing us to do anything) and therefore, I am pro-choice. This does not mean I am pro-abortion, nor does it mean that I or anyone else has a right to tell anyone else what to do with their lives. I believe that every woman has a right to make the best decision she can about her life and I know there are situations in which an abortion is the right choice and the only person who has to live with the choice, is the person making the decision–not me or others.

I cannot see myself–as a Born-Again Believer–attempting to force my views upon others when I don’t have to live their life. I am concerned about all life–especially the lives of babies, mothers, children, senior citizens,  and students and know that it is the responsibility of the Believer to take defend the rights of the poor, vulnerable and needy. So while I admit, I do not understand the choices some people make (and I’m sure that’s equally true in how others feel about me), I can respect their right to make decisions about their lives. As long as a person’s rights don’t infringe upon mine or mine infringe upon them–we’re good. The wisest people know that whether we agree about anything or not, there are consequences for everything we do that will impact our lives either negatively or positively.

I’ve also been reminded how the enemy will work overtime in trying to dig up dirt in an effort to create animosity against me. I know what people cannot find to undermine me they will manufacture in an attempt to discredit me. I can’t stop them. People can say whatever they want to say and nothing they say defines truth about me or others. Therefore, they can have at it. I do not have to respond to foolishness or stupidity or trumped up allegations about anything and I won’t. As I pointed out to a couple of people–my life is “literally” an open book. Anything, anyone wants to know me–good, bad, indifferent–can be found in one of my books or in a blog post and they’re all available online. I have nothing to hide.

Knowing the challenges I’ll be facing over the coming months will certainly keep me communicating with my Daddy and because He loves me, He’ll guide me every step of the way. If by chance I happen to misunderstand something He’s telling me, Holy Spirit will be right there to remind me and set me back on track.

Father,

Thank You for wisdom and insight and humility to understand I need You–every hour of every day–I need You. Thank you for loving me, correcting, and my guiding me in all that needs to be done and for sending people in my direction that can and will keep the wheels on the bandwagon turning in the direction in which You would have us to go. Remind me that nothing I do or encourage others to do should be done in an effort to bring glory to anyone other than You.

In Jesus’ name I pray and thank You, Amen!

 

name recognition

Win With Favor!

Win With Favor!

My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, for they will prolong your life many years and bring you peace and prosperity. Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil. Proverbs 3:1-7 NIV

I am amazed and grateful for the support I’ve received from those who acknowledged my intent for a presidential run in 2020. As I said before, this time over the next few months will be used in my quest to determine the feasibility and the needs of others. I am concerned about the welfare of all people so I must make sure that I represent the needs of all people.

What I bring to the table for a presidential run is this: A desire to see all Americans thrive; especially the 98% who were not privy to the access of wealth (some born into it) of the other 2%. When I speak on behalf of the 98%; it is from the experience of living as we do, enduring what many have endured, and overcoming as many have overcome–without gaining wealth by cheating, lying, or humiliating others. Beyond my flaws and shortcomings, I still have much to offer this country if I’m elected president.

This is how I’ve explained what I have to offer to others:

  • I fully recognize that I don’t know everything I need to know to be president of the United States, but I’m also wise enough to know how to find those people who know all I don’t know.
  • I am a qualified educator (with multiple degrees), an avid reader and prolific writer.
  • I am more than just an educator; I am a life-long learner and look forward to learning something new every day.
  • I am both compassionate and passionate and believe in standing up for all who are unable to fight back for themselves.
  • I am a committed Believer in The Word and in my relationship with Jesus Christ (though I know there are some who think a liberal can’t be a Christian–based on what I’ve seen of the “far-right Christians,” I’m better at being more like Jesus than they will ever be).
  • I know many of the issues that plague women–especially women of color–because I experienced them through living.
  • I know the challenge of trying to raise a family on minimum wage jobs as a single parent and yet never giving up.
  • I know the challenges of creating an environment and opportunities needed for a quality education because I’ve taught in some of the most difficult situations and yet managed to inspire students to excel, in spite of their circumstances.
  • I know the importance of the need for equality in pay for women who are working just as hard as their male counterparts, but often in more challenging situations.
  • I know the challenges that many grandparents face on a daily basis trying to raise grandchildren because I’m doing just that.
  • I know the challenges many senior citizens face because I am one and my husband I face those same challenges.
  • I know the challenges students face in trying not to get involved with negative behaviors and in rebelling against parents because I was a rebellious teenager.

The list could go on, and when the time comes–it shall.  I know what I know because I’ve lived it and even with all the experiences I’ve had, I don’t know it all and so I need to hear from those who have “learned to appreciate life because of having lived it” and want others to learn from their experiences.

I’m knowledgeable in a number of areas, but realize I have much to learn and will spend time seeking those who know to help me understand what I don’t know.

My interest in running for president is not just a “reaction” to the current inept administration (though that is part of it), but it is more about caring about all Americans and doing what I can for them and in maintaining peace throughout the world.  Plans are coming together–rather quickly–and with the help of those who have already offered I should be able to present initial ideas for policy plans that will lift all Americans–to whatever standard they want to reach.

I don’t presume to know what all Americans need or want, but I will be asking questions and I hope as many Americans as possible will respond to a survey that will be available in the coming weeks.

Whether I continue to making that decision to becoming a candidate for President remains to be seen, but if I do and even if I lose–I will still have won and become a better person for the experience of a lifetime. With the favor of the Lord showered upon me, I win!

The Favor of The Lord is Upon Me!

Dare To See Yourself!

Dare To See Yourself!

Each heart knows its own bitterness, and no one else can share its joy. Proverbs 14:10 NIV

Here’s a challenge for everyone today. Get a mirror or go to the mirror in your bathroom or in your car. Take a good look at yourself and be willing to see the depths of your soul through the windows of your eyes. What do you see?

Do you see joy or sadness?

Do you see love or hate?

Do you see angst and bitterness?

Do you see helplessness or hope?

What do you really see?

Think about that for a moment. Now think about “why” you see what you see.

Far too often, people are bitter and hateful because they do not recognize the seed that has been planted by circumstances beyond their control. That includes how parents raised them or not raised them (love and hate are taught)–the struggles they fought through on a daily basis–or the envy and jealousy they felt when they looked at others and wondered, “Why them and not me?”

I have a better question for everyone to wonder about–why not you?

Look, every morning (because of my age) I take a good look at myself in a magnifying mirror so I can “see” the hair growth and pluck it out before I leave the house. Some women don’t care, but I do. Nothing creeps me out like discovering I left the house with a long, curly black hair sticking out my face (chin) wherever it might be. But now here’s the tricky part–cataracts are forming in both eyes and even when I look before I leave, I don’t always see the ornery little hair trying to escape detection. When I “feel across my chin” even the tiniest hair is discovered and back into the bathroom I go with my trusty little tweezers until the culprit is gone.

Even though I get a little put out when I miss those hairs, it’s nothing that compares to how I feel when I know I have slighted someone–unintentionally–and when I look at myself–I recognize when I’ve headed in the wrong direction and immediately, I repent.

Though life’s circumstances (in the last 65 years) have provided plenty of fodder and fuel and fertilizer to nurture bitterness and disappointment--I refuse to let it grow. God has been too good to me to allow a seed of bitterness to linger in my soul and bud, attempting to flower and spread like an ivy throughout my being. So, I allow His love to flood my soul and heart–washing away the bitterness and disappointment–never allowing hate to bud or flower and every time–every time–I get angry and want to hate–He reminds me He is love and if I truly belong to Him; I cannot hate. What a wonderful feeling–to have so much love within that hate has no room to enter.

Now, have you had time to really look at yourself and think about what you see? If you haven’t, keep looking and dare to see beyond the surface, all the way down to the depths of your feet.  Is there anything there that needs to be plucked out? Do you have a trusty pair of tweezers?

Own what you see and be willing to rid yourself of anything that will nurture bitterness and hate and allow the Love of God to fill you to overflowing and the world will see–the joy that resides within.

This joy I have–the world didn’t give it and I won’t let the world take it away!

exploration

We Can’t Get Tired Now!

We Can’t Get Tired Now!

Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:28-31 NIV

Day after day, week after week, year after year, no matter how much we attempt to do to change what happens around us, we don’t see the change we want to see, but we can’t get tired, now.

Though adversity after adversity confronts us, wearies us, and angers us, we must keep doing what we know is right–guided by Holy Spirit--maintaining our hope in Him who is the Light who dispels the darkness.

Even when we are walking in the Light of Love, we must guard our hearts and recognize the wolf in sheep’s clothing or the smiling faces who hide the poison in the conversation. Not every smiling face is a friend and when we look closely at the eyes–those orbs that reflect the depth of the soul, we know who is a friend and who is the enemy’s tool.

Every day we wake, we will face some known and some unknown challenges. Many we will overcome, but there are some that drain us dry, leaving us weak and wondering why we bother to continue. That’s life–we can’t take it personally and we must never get tired of trying to do the right thing. When we are weak in our strength, we can count on Him to strengthen us. When our thoughts attempt to defeat us, we have to encourage ourselves in The Lord.

Living for The Lord is not easy, but it is gratifying beyond the description of mere words. Those who don’t understand cannot fathom why we keep on the path He has set before us. They participate in the scorn and ridicule and wait for us to become as they are and when we don’t–they are confused, while we just smile and give God the glory!

If you’re like me and have been facing all sorts of challenges–physical, emotional, and spiritual--praying fervently for those in need, while it seems that no one is praying for you; strengthening yourself in the Word just to keep from going off on those around you, mumbling to keep from saying the wrong thing since words once spoken can never be retrieved; and living in the hope we have in Jesus–don’t get tired now!

When people say all manner of things about you that aren’t true–just thank God for them spending so much and attention on you. You really matter to them! When your body acts like it belongs in a morgue, speak life to your body and tell it to get up and get going. When your heart hurts because people disappoint you, focus on the One who never disappoints. We have an advocate in the midst of every trial and temptation and His name is Jesus!

Until He returns, we are victorious in Him on this side of heaven, so we can’t get tired now!

When The King of Glory Shows Up!

“Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, you gates; lift them up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is he, this King of glory? The Lord Almighty–he is the King of Glory.” (Psalm 24:8-10 NIV)

For the past several weeks, there has been so much going on in my life that sometimes–it weighed upon me like a ton of bricks. But I believe in power of prayer, the One who responds and can say–Victory achieved on the front! The King of Glory showed up and showed out and now we may proceed without obstacle or sour grapes interfering with the process of achieving success. Glory to His Name!

But this victory was not achieved because of who I am. It was achieved because of who He is. He is the King of Glory, strong and mighty in battle and whenever we have reached the end of our strength, we can depend on His and know in our weakness, He makes us strong. We are strengthened for every battle that confronts us and when we allow Him to lead and guide every step we take and every word we speak–we know victory.

There is no need for any Believer to be overly concerned about current events, demon statues, temples for Satan, or any other demonic attempt to upset our peace, in Him. Though it may seem like the enemy is winning–take heart, The King of Glory is about to show up and show out! Victory in the name of Jesus will be proclaimed and all who were concerned will know peace.

We must always remember, we are more than conquerors because of His love for us and there is defeat in Him, therefore, we never have to know defeat when we are abiding in the vine and He is abiding in us. We have victory over everything–every challenge, every setback, every thought that would hinder–victory is near and all we have to do is proclaim. We have to see every situation for what it is–an opportunity for us stand tall, ready to proclaim His love and share the Gospel of salvation and then just sat back, knowing God’s got this–and see the victory He has determined. Every setback is really a set-up–for the King of Glory to show up. 

When we truly realize we can count on Him–we’ll never allow the enemy’s tricks to get us off course. We must stay in The Word, we must mediate on The Word, we must continually seek Him and ask for His wisdom to guide us daily and when we are obedient, in the midst of the storm, we can and must relax and know–He’s going to show up and set things right!

Who is this King of Glory? The One who created all things and without whom, nothing was ever created. He is the bright and morning star, the Lily of the Valley, our Healer, our Provider, our Heavenly Father, our Savior and Lord, our Peace in the storms of life and when He speaks–after He shows up–all will be calm.

Only By His Spirit!

“So he said to me, “This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty.” (Zechariah 4:6 NIV)

Whenever I hear people talk about how they weak they are or I smile and thank God, for in our weakness–He is made strong. Hallelujah! If we would just remember, nothing that challenges us is a battle we must fight alone, for the battle is the Lord’s and He will be victorious!

The battle against sin won’t be won in courtrooms–it will be won in the Spirit, by those with unwavering faith, consistently communicating with God and promoting Godliness in all they do and say. That is not to say we who believe God should become doormats and do nothing. We should exercise our faith by standing firm in our beliefs and whenever possible, letting our voices be heard and making sure we’re saying what God says.

Writing letters and petitions to change the environment for good is an exercise of faith. If we do nothing, we demonstrate a lack of faith. God told Joshua that, “whatever we put our hands to would prosper and we would have good success.”

The battles are not won by promoting hate, but by demonstrating love.

The battles are not won by acts of superiority, but by demonstrating kindness. “With loving kindness have I drawn you.”

The battles of war are not won by the might and power of anyone’s military might, but by those who have confidence in God to deliver and set free all those who belong to Him and they are always walking in the Spirit, seeking His wisdom and direction.

If all the military strategists would seek God’s wisdom and act accordingly, wars would cease.

If all government leaders would seek God’s wisdom and act accordingly, there would be peace in the land.

If all parents would seek God’s wisdom and act accordingly, there would be peace in homes.

If everyone seeking a mate would seek God’s wisdom and act accordingly, there would be no divorces.

If everyone married would seek God’s wisdom and act accordingly, there would be no domestic abuse.

If everyone would simply seek God’s wisdom and act accordingly, there would no need for prisons, we would live healthier lives, and none would be at a disadvantage.

“If” we would just understand that we don’t have the power to do anything, and depend on Him, all would have access to living the abundant life we’re promised.

Nothing we do in our own strength or wisdom matters–we must depend upon Him and His wisdom, hear and obey and then we shall see change for the best in the land–Only By His Spirit!

Lord, help us to seek You while You may be found, receiving Your Wisdom in all things and acting accordingly so that all we do, glorifies You!

Mine Forever!

“My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever.” (Psalm 73:26 NLT)

No matter what happens to us–failing health or weakened Spirit, God remains our strength because in Him, we are made strong, and He will never leave us.

Perhaps, the greatest tests of our faith is when things start going wrong. Our attitude or response to each and every challenge that comes our way is an indicator of how much faith in God, we truly have.

Sickness will sometimes cause people to give up and curse God.

Loss of loved ones will sometimes cause people to give up and curse God.

When these things happen, I often wonder if people forget about Job and all the horrible things that happened to him and even when his wife told him to curse God, he wouldn’t. He understood that no matter what happens to us–our faith should remain in God. Like the Hebrew boys who refused to worship a statute or Daniel refusing to stop praying, we must know that events in our lives-good or bad–does not change who God is and or the promises He made to us.

We must develop our character to a place where when we are faced with difficult challenges, we can say with confidence that no matter what God allows to happen–He is still God and He is still mine!

Do we have that kind of faith–to say emphatically to our circumstances–“Circumstance–you are not bigger than God and no matter what happens as a result of you showing up in my life–He will be with me–forever?”

We can say that to cancer–no matter what the type–every stripe He received in His body was to cure mine–by one means or another.

We can say that to grief over loved ones–there is a season for all things, a time to be born and a time to die–God knows best in all things.

We can say that to financial woes–His desire is that I prosper as my soul prospers. I am rich beyond measure because of Him.

We can say that to rebellious children–children are a blessing not a curse and this too–shall pass.

We can say that to disappointment–My hope is in Christ Jesus who never disappoints me.

We can say that to bigotry and hatred–His love overflows and negates any hatred directed at me.

We can say that–to anything that occurs in our lives that causes us want to give up on God. He will never leave us or forsake those He loves–even when it looks like there’s no way out–He is “the Way-maker” in all things and He is ours–for all eternity!