Don’t run from it….(An experience in an environment I was taught to run from)

In a world where self protection and self preservation is such a real concern – the opportunity FINALLY presented itself for me to go to the gun range. (Brief background: My baby sister, has her license to carry and recently started going to the range to practice. I pursued my license to carry and was always interested in going to practice but never had the time.

This time we made plans to go together – I was so excited to bond and do something different. Side note: Aren’t you tired of the same ole stuff in life? I was so glad to go do something different.)

Neither pro-violence or pro-gun. I am pro-protect myself and my family by any means necessary.

We pulled into the secluded wooded area, I was probably excited the way my children are when they see their presents under a lit Christmas tree.

Hearing the pop pop sound, I knew we were close. However, the cautious over analytical person in me said, “What if a stray bullet comes your way?” I pushed passed the thought.

I should probably share – I am not a daredevil by nature. I have no desire to ride rollercoasters at the amusement parks, I experienced enough near death, real life experiences to be comfortable (almost excited to) eating fried dough, cotton candy and hold everyone’s bags while they prepare to feel the flip of their stomachs and scream like death is near. No thank you- I’ll stand by to make the call or go get help in case something happens. God forbid, the ride malfunctions – maybe that teenager or underpaid adult was not thorough in their quality check before the park opened. I can think of a thousand things that can go wrong.

As we enter the facility there were men, walking around servicing customers who were purchasing firearm and respective supplies (bullets, holsters, etc). A much different life, than growing up in Roxbury – seeing guns and knowing to never touch them because I didn’t want my fingerprints to even be associated, in case some prior crime had been affiliated with the firearm. My life is a testimony.

Seeing them walk around freely, was similar to having police walking around with their gun in their holsters but knowing they were just regular people. I was like yes, no crazy man attacking innocent people will get far. I was ready for my training. I signed the waiver – which to me was sealing my death with no recourse to my family if something ‘accidentally happened’ to me.

I signed, following my life lessons: no risk, no reward. The waiver was the barrier between standing in the waiting area or moving closer to our intended purpose.

A lane opened for us, it was our turn to select some firearms to ‘try’ and since it was my first time, I solicited the advice of the ‘expert’ – the man behind the counter with the gun on his waist – no other indication of his expertise. This whole process for me, was still risky. He checked each gun we selected and put them in a patched case. As we walk back, my sis gives me the rundown on the protective ear and eye gear. Ok! Ready. We walk towards the room where the shots are coming from, they get louder. As the door opens and I hear the bangs and pops closer and closer – all of my life skills from growing up in Roxbury/Dorchester kicked in. In my mind, remember personal space, too close is a threat, you hear that pop, you drop that bike and run in the opposite direction. But now, I’m walking toward and in the direction of them. I had to coach my body not to run…. I am dead center in an enclosed environment, I was taught to run from.

In that moment, I received my revelation and knew what God has been trying to get me to understand.

In my mind I hear: “The things you are use to running from, I called you to dwell in. This is how you get to the places you’ve never been. I called you to transform your thinking about the environment so I can do greater in and around you.”

 

Hearing the different bangs and pops, I instantly knew from unofficial life education and training, when a machine gun versus a hand gun was used.

In the moment, I had to adjust and tell myself, I will not run. All while the chaos of bullets flying and sounds of clips reloading.

Meanwhile, my sister is unbothered headed straight to our assigned lane, I was so glad she knew where she was going. I remember just following her feet because in those moments – I was having a pep talk, coaching myself that this was not a former life and I was safe. I could not comprehend what was happening around me. She was in a familiar environment as she removed the guns from the cases and began to load the clips. I needed a moment to observe. To gather my senses, it seemed unreal.

My turn: It was my turn to hit the target. She handed me the gun. I smiled inside because I knew I did not need to worry about a ‘body’ (that’s a good term for association with a prior crime) attached.

As I took the loaded firearm, I remind myself the rules of safety – I did not want to be responsible of accidentally hitting someone else. I held it, closed one eye and look over the barrel at my intended target……

After a few more rounds, I discovered my preferences and was a better shooter than I considered. We laughed and joked (cautiously holding or placing the guns on the counter) about our target having no chance. We both are really good shooters.

Reflection: In an environment, I could not think of functioning in – the longer we stayed I naturally tuned out the noise of bullets flying.
I’d adjusted and was now confident that the what ifs would not happened.

Life lesson: What scared me and would have initiated an immediate reaction was now just background noise.

 

“You have to leave your comfort zone to receive what God has for you in this New Dimension” – Bishop TD Jakes 11/29/2018

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Good Morning! ‪God is getting ready to appear to you in unexpected ways and do unexpected things! Prepare for a paradigm shift. God is getting ready to move every obstacle that is standing between you, and what He is getting ready to do in your life! You have to leave your comfort zone to go to the next Dimension that God has in store for you. It is time for you to SHIFT! The next dimension is going to require you to activate your faith in a way that you have never activated your faith before. Can you stand to be blessed? God has heard your prayers. He knows the desires of your heart (Psalm 37:4)- Take delight in Him and enjoy the journey! He is getting ready to move in a supernatural way that supersedes anything you ever prayed and petitioned Him for – get ready! (Jeremiah 29:11)‬ Watch the rebroadcast of #RememberWhatISaid now at bit.ly/RememberWhatISaid #tphonline #DailyDevotion

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Do you want to be clean?

“Jesus came down the mountain with the cheers of the crowd still ringing in his ears. Then a leper appeared and went to his knees before Jesus, praying, “Master, if you want to, you can heal my body.” – Matthew 8:1-2 MSG
“Jesus reached out and touched him, saying, “I want to. Be clean.” Then and there, all signs of the leprosy were gone. Jesus said, “Don’t talk about this all over town. Just quietly present your healed body to the priest, along with the appropriate expressions of thanks to God. Your cleansed and grateful life, not your words, will bear witness to what I have done.” – Matthew 8:3-4 MSG
Do you live with guilt from your past? Ashamed of a sexual assault that was done to you. Fighting with the images or words of an abusive life. You may have made some choices yesterday that does not reflect the woman you are today.

The guilt and the shame must end today!
 
Wise women of God, we must remember Jesus wants us clean.  He responded to the leper “I Want To [responding the the lepers statement].  Be Clean.”
Our Lord wants us to be clean.  He wants us to be whole.  He wants us to be free of diseases.  Our lives need to be cleansed.  Just as the leper, we need to present ourselves to Jesus and say, “Master, if you want to, you can heal my body.”
There are some deep areas of our lives that may need to be healed. Some things are so deep, we have not recognized it. The Lord has provided resources or counselors who can help us get to the root of these issues. Please look into it if it is needed.
Just as the leper – our issues will come to the surface.  We may take it out on our husband if we are married.  Quickly raising our voice or emasculating him when we feel trapped and cornered.  Our children may feel the blunt of our anger towards a situation they didn’t cause.  Making them feel unwanted because of our past hurts.
Have faith “Wise Women” and trust Jesus as the leper did.  Go to him knowing that Jesus wants you to be healed.  Have the faith he will lead you to your healing.  Have faith that Jesus will heal you.
Don’t worry ladies, the healing will be visible.  Those whom we love will see it in how we live.  We will live with a grateful life.  The cleansing will be reflected in our actions.  Our husbands, children, and people we love will see change.  Hopefully our cleansed changed lives will be the catalyst for another to want Jesus to clean them.
MGD

Examine Yourself and the Company You Keep

“But we do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed, but to those who have faith and are saved.” – ‭‭Hebrews‬ ‭10:39‬ ‭NIV‬‬
A “chosen women” is a wise women.  She is aware of herself because of God.  She understands her strengths and weaknesses.  There are times when we let our guard
down.  Seeking sound advice relying on another women’s opinion disguised as Godly wisdom.  So what do we do.  How do we protect ourselves?  We have to examine ourselves and the company we keep.
Where is your faith?
Sometimes the circle of women or the woman we surround ourselves with, is based on our emotions. Those close girlfriends who listen to what you say. The one who seems to always target and fuel that emotional drive. The one who is Christian when she wants to be. The girlfriend who fuels your anger and or sorrow.
But could she be the one that shrinks back to the old person, “The Convenience Christian?” Could she be the one destroying your transformation? It may or may not be on purpose. They may be suggesting only what they are taught. But we must 1 John 4 the situation.
“Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” – ‭‭1 John‬ ‭4:1‬ ‭NIV‬‬
1) Be clear on your faith in God. God speaks to you the same way He speaks to others.
2) Be confident in the faith you have in Jesus Christ. He already brought you out of darkness. He already got you out of trouble. He saved your life.
3) Be patient in doing the WILL of God. Remember the days before now when your faith was tested and you made it through. Remember how you put your trust in God and not people. Don’t rush what God is doing.
Don’t shrink back in your faith.  Don’t be influenced by those who shrink back.  It’s not that we don’t pray for them.  But if they shrink back, their faith and focus is not in God.  If they shrink back, they are not stable.
So please, “Examine Yourself and the Company You Keep.”
MGD

Unshakable

We are building our lives on the promises of God. Because his Word is unbreakable, our hope is unshakable. We do not stand on the problems of life or the pain in life. We stand on the great and precious promises of God.

Identify it! The FRUIT is in you!

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” – Galatians 5:22-23 NIV

Many of us would truly believe that the fruits of the Spirit are in our lives.  We would believe we exhibit these great qualities to all who are around.

But let us take a deep examination of who we really are.  If we asked our family.  Would they say we really love them?

When things are easy joy seems to be right in front of us. But when times get crazy at home we sit in the mess of our lives.

Peace!! Is there such a thing. Because life seems to always interrupt and prove different.

Forbearance
1. the act of forbearing; a refraining from something.
2. forbearing conduct or quality; patient endurance; self-control

No I can’t refrain from old or bad habits.  I need to cope with life.  My attitude shifts and I say and do things that I may regret later.  I don’t have time to patient and endure. Who wants to have self-control when my emotions are on high? No time to be kind to the one who has me going from 0-10.  No time to show or bring out any goodness right now.  I don’t feel like it.

I have always been faithful. But was I true to my word when I put my husband down?  No, that’s right the Bible says to respect your husband.  That wasn’t being faithful to God. Was I being loyal when I talked about people behind closed doors?  No, the Bible does talk about not being a gossip.  That wasn’t being loyal to God either.

Who has time to be gentle when you have to fight for position in the workforce? When you have to be the strong mother for your children. When you have to help your husband stay focused if you are married. When you have to work two jobs, go to school, cook dinner, wash clothes, be there for friends but have no one to turn to because you are single. You want gentle!!! Is it possible when you have to fight and put on the tough exterior?

Self-control is usually not an option. They only thing I can control is not having self-control. Because everything else seems to be out of control. Everything else seems to be going the way I wasn’t expecting.

Here is what God is saying:

“When you accept my Son as your Lord and Savior.  The seeds of these fruits started to germinate.  It is in you my daughter.

I know that life is crazy at times.  But when did you really trust me?  I know school seems hard.  But when did you trust me?  Have you called my name and not listened?  Have you turned to me and then blocked your ears?

Stay focused on me when you are in the storm.  Keep watch for the cloud of rain when you are in a drought.  I have your healing.  I only want the best for you.  Read my Word and talk to me. I love when you worship me. The songs from your heart I have delight in.  You are my daughter.  Don’t treat me like the man who wasn’t there for you.  Don’t treat me like the man who left your mother. Don’t make your husband your savior.  I AM the One who saves.  I Love You My DAUGHTER!”

MGD

Declaring His praises, because I AM Chosen.

“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” – 1 Peter‬ ‭2:9‬ ‭NIV‬‬
Do you believe there is something special about you?  Being a woman already means you are special.  But being a Christian women really sets you apart.  You are part of the chosen.  Selected by God to live out the greatness God put in you.
Christ died that you would share in the Kingdom of Heaven.  You are adopted as an heir, of CHRIST.  Holy, set apart, and prized by God. You have been adopted into ROYALTY!!!
Let your posture and speech reflect how God sees you.  Praise God for calling you out of darkness.  Praise God for wanting a relationship with you.  Praise God for letting you see the light.  Praise God for helping your marriage.  Praise God for protecting your children. Praise God for opening doors.
When people look past you for promotion, remember you were chosen.  If you feel unappreciated, remember you are chosen.  When life seems to crowd your mind, remember you are chosen.
So praise God because He has called you out of the darkness of life. He is setting you up for great Victories!!!
Remembers these words – “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” – ‭‭1 Peter‬ ‭2:9‬ ‭NIV‬‬
MGD

You Can Do It

Not my story but I received very encouraging and blessed words from this message….Enjoy ladies!!!

I will never forget when Caleb learned how to put his shoes and socks on all by himself. After he put them on, he looked up at me with his big brown eyes and with a huge smile on his face and shouted, “Did it!” He was so excited. He could not wait to share his accomplishment with me. His joy warmed my heart. He is my precious little boy, and I love seeing him learn new things.

God looks at you with this same excitement and pride when you celebrate accomplishments in your life. When you graduated from high school, he clapped. When you got your first job, he rejoiced. And now, as you learn how to care for your children, God is smiling from heaven and cheering you on. He knows balancing diaper changing, grocery shopping, doctors appointments, house cleaning, and laundry services are no small feats to conquer. His heart warms as you learn and grow as a mother.

We are not perfect and, like Caleb, who sometimes puts his shoes on the wrong feet, we will make mistakes. But just as a mom is always there to encourage and guide her children, God is always there encouraging and guiding you.

I hope you will take some time today to think about how special you are to our Lord. He is your biggest cheerleader. You are so precious to him. Always remember, he created you, and no matter how tough your job as a mom may be, you can do it! God believes in you! Pray for God to help you believe in yourself.

Thank Goodness for Microwaves

When I wake up in the morning, I cannot wait to pour myself a cup of coffee. I have dreams of sitting down in my favorite chair, taking in the quiet of the morning, and enjoying every last sip. Unfortunately, just as I pour that beautiful cup of coffee, I often hear someone yell, “Mommy, I need you!” No more fresh coffee. No more favorite chair. No more quiet morning. My coffee will have to wait. Thank goodness for microwaves. As a mom, we feel tired and overwhelmed at times. We long for a few moments to sit and relax. We love and adore our children, but from time to time, we feel worn out and weary. We feel alone. Be encouraged, you are not alone. God is there beside you and will help you along the way. Reach out to him. Pray to God each morning when you wake up. Ask him to be your caffeine. He will lift you up when you are down. He will give you hope when you are discouraged. He will give you energy when you need strength. God will recharge you more than a cup of coffee any day.