This was a big step. It was the summer of 2020 after the protests and outcries for justice was everywhere. I wanted to do my part. I sat in my stuff and said to myself, “I can’t hide anymore. I have to be uncomfortable and make people uncomfortable.” But it’s in the most uncomfortable moments where we grow. It was the self-therapy I needed to not hide the repressive thoughts of unworthiness in who I was. It was a release in putting myself out there as fully me. I shared my testimony of things and emotions I felt in my racial identity as a first generation American of Haitian immigrants and Christian.
Remember this is my experience and my story to tell. I own every part of the experiences that have made me who I am today. I grew from that moment and continue to grow. I am a work in progress and learning that my voice matters. So take this with a grain of salt and listen to my words.
We can all be our worst critic…I am preaching to the choir on this. A deep realization of growth is learning to preach truth to myself and be still. For me, it is staying in God’s Word, the real truth that speaks life.
But, I’m not gonna lie…sometimes I read Scripture and there is no spark or burning bush revelation. Yes, the Bible is God-breathed and active (2 Timothy 3:16). But God’s instruction may cause different responses. Yes, I get conviction and truth but lately, I have been still in His truth and put a verse(s) in my Christian tool box.
He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;-Psalm 46:10a
I have been learning to take in scripture and really marinate on a specific truth in my life. I just need to be still. My mind just races constantly about the future. Will life fall into place with my career, with friendships, with a romantic relationship, marriage, children, etc? I almost give myself headaches and anxiety just thinking about an unknown future.
But I am learning to be still. Easier said than done. I remind myself not to worry for what will it add to my life?(Matthew 6:27). Absolutely nothing. The Enemy is trying me but I feel greater is coming…that’s why he is working so hard.
A passage that causes me to be still and preach to myself is: being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.-Philippians 1:6
I am choosing to be still and preach currently: God completes what He starts. So God is not done with me and the things that worry me will be completed in Jesus’ name and timing.
What do you need to be still and preach truth to yourself about?
It’s interesting seeing grandiose celebrations like America’s Inauguration Day, Bastille Day Celebrations in France, and the Queen’s Jubilee in the UK. The fancy clothing, the pretty horses, the waving of flags, the performances, and the fanfare of it all for one day or moment.
But when it was Jesus, it was nothing of the sort. Compared to the above events, it would actually be underwhelming to today’s standards. There would be no big ratings or live streaming in all news stations and social media. It would not be a trending topic on Twitter. It would be too boring exactly.
But that never mattered to Jesus. Could Jesus have done the grand celebration? Yes. But, He did not. He humbled Himself which attests to His nature and character.
He was the KING but he would not act as an earthly king. An earthly king thought of himself but King Jesus thought about all people. Actually, I believe Jesus wanted to distinguish Himself. Set His Kingdom apart from the empires of the day. His Kingdom would be eternal.
His humanity went beyond a fleeting, grand celebration and entry. For what He was about do would show a grander, more promising eternity for humanity itself.
God has been teaching so much in this current season of life. A big thing I have been working through is speaking kindness, grace, and truth to myself.
I am my own worst critic. I can speak kinder to a stranger than my own soul. When my plans don’t go as planned or I deal with setbacks, I just fall in despair and allow the Enemy to speak lies. My anxiety is heightened and I get into this headspace of hopelessness. I am blessed to have people in my life to encourage me, to lead me to Christ, and to pray for me. Though I am glad I have them, they should be the last people I go to.
Sometimes I feel God is so silent, it’s almost like I am all alone (but that’s the Enemy). In all actuality, I’m not alone; I am just not still. That is a problem: It’s hard to be still when your mind is running 500 miles an hour.
I had a moment of anxiety last week and my family and friends said “Do not worry about the unknown. God has a plan.” I have struggled with when this current season will shift. I am in a season of waiting and it’s hard. It just weighed heavily last week.
And I was reminded of these verses:
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.-Philippians 4:6-7
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.-Jeremiah 29:11
So I am working on being kinder to myself. Give myself credit on how far I have come while waiting for the next step. Easier said than done but I am trying to take charge of my mental health and being. Knowing God’s Word helps fight the thoughts that can run me ragged. Doing my quiet time and being present in the moment. Interacting with fellow believers to keep me accountable. And stop and breath.
A mantra I say some times is “daily bread.” I am referring to the Lord’s Prayer passage, “give us this day our daily bread.” I repeat it because it reminds me to be present now. I can focus what God has put in front of me and that’s all. That is what I need: daily bread from the One who gives it freely.
This revelation is not based on luck but on self-care and personal discernment for better. It is my form of self-care. Self-care is not just the physical things one does. I love to shop, get my nails done, have brunch, paint, etc. etc. But self-care is also the emotional and mental ways you care for your mind.
Like all of you, I am a work in progress. I am flawed but loved by a perfect Savior. I don’t reach perfection in this life. I have to keep bearing fruit allowing God to prune and grow me. So this is my growth and my self-care journey.
The Lord is faithful to His promises, not our expectations.
As humans, we have expectations. It’s normal. But the problem is where our expectations are entitlements and demands that God must follow. I say this because as a high school graduate, I had all these expectations that I would be a career woman, wife, and mother by 30 (crazy? I know). It was less about God and more of me boosting my ego. Well, God just LOLs at me because He’s got the plan.
I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.-John 10:10b
This can be construed as God is my genie and will give me all I expect and all I want. NO!!! Step away from that idea.
God’s faithfulness is not what we want. God sees beyond our expectations and it is ALWAYS better. God ALWAYS provides according to His Will. He does not need our permission to carry out His plans. We have to wait on the Lord (Psalm 27:14).
Easier said than done but hear me out…
If the Creator of the Universe can create everything out of nothing, what makes you think that He will not do the impossible for you?
Preaching to the Choir?Yes. I am learning that in my own life. My expectations are small in contrast to God’s great plans.
The Beauty of God’s Plan: Every time, God has given more than I thought, come through in too many ways I never thought, protected me from destructive, alternative situations, and opened my eyes to something new.
So consider that. Not our expectation but His great promise for our lives. God has never steered us wrong and never will. Keep going and God will show you the Way.
I’m back. I have missed you. A lot has happened. The world is uncertain and going crazy right…am I right?
But in the mist of the chaos, I wanted to come back with the medicine of encouragement and Jesus Christ.
In recent weeks, the Coronavirus has been running its course causing social cancellations, social distancing, self quarantine, new cases each day, and uncertainty in the economy and life as we know it.
God has ways of getting our attention. We can see that clearly. He can strip all the excess and distractions until we are at the end of ourselves. Where we are at the end of our ourselves, God steps in.
God never lets anything happen without a purpose and reason. No season of life is without a lesson.
Trust. Yes, trust.
God is stripping away the physical securities for us to draw closer to Him. It’s like a back to basics. Trust God in every part of your life: your health, your family, your physical body, and your decisions. The things of this world is temporary. It is really clear.
The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.-Psalm 9:9-10
It is important to value and be a good steward of the blessings in front of us. Slow down. Take a look around. Value what God has given you. Maybe the lockdown and self-quarantine is the wakeup call. Stop looking at the temporary and look to the eternal: God.
The future is uncertain but God is a certain, constant force to keep living in this day in age. Trust in God. He provides all things and works in all situations. His provision is real and certain.
It’s ok to be scared. We are human. We have emotions but it is important not to stay there. Trust in the God who will comfort and provide in many ways.
When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.-Psalm 56:3
Take care of yourself and your loved ones. Trust in God’s unchanging power and provision. God’s got us and will see us through
The man said, “Let me go because the dawn is breaking.” But Jacob said, “I won’t let you go until you bless me.”-Genesis 32:26
I will not let you go until you bless me.
2020 is a new start and beginning to immeasurably more. I don’t really have new years’ resolutions but a theme for the new year.
Blessing is the theme. It is not “I want list” but believing that everything is a blessing. Whether good or a setback, it will birth a blessing down the road. Hard work and trials are building blocks and ways to grow. God’s “no” is not yet, there is something better. There is something better on the horizon. It’s something to look forward to
Don’t get me wrong…I do have goals to accomplish spiritually, career-wise, relationally, and mentally. How I get to those goals centers around my theme of blessing. I am blessed at how far God has brought me, I am blessed in the present, and looking forward to the blessings God has in store for me. But I know God knows my needs before I think of it. So that is why resolutions seem unrealistic to me. But that’s just me.
Imagine a father and expectant mother traveling miles to the father’s homeland to be counted in the census. A child was to be born. It was not the unborn child’s choice to travel to this foreign land but was a part of God’s greater plan. It was God’s will for the child to born in his earthly father’s homeland.
The unborn child’s parents were not accepted with a warm welcome or reception to the finest room/hospital. It was a dark night in a city with no vacancy. But there was a stable and a feeding trough for the unborn baby to sleep in.
Then, the mother delivered the Greatest Gift to humanity.
To some, the long-awaited prophesy was fulfilled. To others, He was a threat and some “foreigner” who came to cause trouble.
But this immigrant child, laying in the manger, was the hope that drew smelly shepherds and kings from other lands. An outcast would save the souls of man.
I wanted to write part of the Christmas this way because Jesus loves the immigrants because He was one. He knows what it was like to have a poor reception and to be counted as nothing. The government didn’t like Him, a child who did nothing wrong but be born. God gave this foreigner, Jesus, an ordained purpose.
So don’t look down at other foreigners/immigrants/ children of immigrants because you don’t know what God can do through them. You never know where angels can be.
Ok friends, as long as I have been living, there has been the conflict of Happy Holidays or Merry Christmas. People fight and get heartless..and dare I say it annoying to have their way.
I speak for myself, not anyone else. This is a no pressure zone. I’m not preaching but speaking.
I say Merry Christmas because of the true meaning: Jesus Christ. The greatest gift given to humanity came as a humble baby. A King was born to fulfill prophesy. I use it as a witness. I smile and say it. I say it with all my heart with the light of Christ. I understand it is not said in the Bible but I still say it. Merry Christmas…Christ is in it.
I don’t get mad if people say Happy Holidays to me. I just say Merry Christmas back. If they ask why I say Merry Christmas, perfect witness opportunity.
I don’t make a big deal if people say either or neither. I say what I say KINDLY. I realize that I can’t make someone say Merry Christmas. I realize there are people who say Merry Christmas who are so mean it defeats the purpose. I just try to be positive and witness by saying Merry Christmas.
I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.-Philippians 4:11-13
Not every circumstance is perfect. There are good days and bad days but each day God gives you is a blessing.
I have been saying for a while, I am in the in-between season of life from law school to real world. Well now, I am in the season of adjustment and adapting. I am still working towards being a licensed attorney by taking the Bar in another jurisdiction. After failing the Bar for a second time, I really had to take a step back and reevaluate this plan I imagined. My plan was not working. But the problem was, it was not God’s plan up until this point.
The big question I struggled with was: Am I content where I am?The truth was: I wasn’t. I wanted my come-up and it was this elaborate plan to get my independence on and live it up! I thought it was better for me to live away from comfort permanently.
But I realized that God gave me the opportunity to be content and independent from my family when I was in law school. I learned a lot about myself in Florida being a young, independent law student in that season. I was content with my life there and God allowed that time for me.
Now, after April, I had to learn how to get that content spirit back because I just wanted that life again. But as I started to look around, I saw that I had provisions to be content about that I did not have in Florida.: First off, I had my support system with me instead of six hours away. Second off, I had my basic necessities: food, clothing, shelter for FREE (can I get an amen?). Third, I had my church home and pastor who is one of my mentors close by. Fourth, I still had the same talents and gifts I had before but I just needed to tap into it where I was.
Sometimes, you have to really look inside yourself and pray for God to reveal the joys you forgot you had. I wrestled with that this past summer but now I am in a better place looking to the future. I am still grinding and hustling but still growing in contentment. I have been more active in finding the joy in the present. I take each day at a time.
I learn contentment every day. Every second, every moment. Whether I am serving at my church, serving my family, or serving my community, I learn the peace of contentment that surpasses all understanding. It keeps me balanced and sane.
God is holding my moments: today, tomorrow, and forever. I just have to learn to be present and thankful in every season.
I encourage you to find true contentment in Jesus Christ. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. You can never go wrong with His love and power. He has never steered me wrong though I steer myself wrong. His grace is sufficient in everything. His peace can be your peace.
Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.-1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
It is daily to exercise your contentment muscle but you can do it. Speak of your blessings (even as simple as waking up), talk to God (He is listening), and be thankful. It will not fail you and God will not fail. Therefore, I thank my God for every circumstance to be content.