Love: The Good Drug

 

It’s needful I hold on a bit longer

Until I’m ready to say goodbye

Whether it’s good for me or not

Ween myself from his love?

But if I quit cold turkey

There’s no detox for broken love

So, I need to love less in miniature increments of time

And then maybe one day I’ll be strong enough to say

Goodbye without remiss; without a tear

But with gladness and good riddance

But right now, I’m hooked on his drug

And today I cannot say

No, I don’t want it this way

Will I always want some

Every now and then to keep me satisfied?

Just a quick hit and that’s it…until next time

Eventually….

I’ll detangle and break free

Some Times Eye

 

I (eye) can be introverted and extroverted

Compassionate or unfeeling

Influential and yet powerless

Self-centered yet thinking of others more than myself, realizing it’s not about me

 

Crowd

I can be very approachable or very reserved

I can appreciate a crowd, yet cherish being with myself

 

Chameleon

I can be all things to all people (once describe as a chameleon)

Yet I can be happily “just me”

My diversity seems to be my undoing

My inconsistencies seem to work against me rather than for me

It’s difficult to find and maintain meaningful relationships

Sometimes – I (eye) find myself …….

                            ….. HUNGRY….

Thankfully – G.I.M.R.A.

God Is My Refuge…Always

OLD WOUNDS: Forgetfulness A Blessing in Disguise

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Healed Scars of the Past

There are some wounds so deep, if you were to remove the harden scabs they’d begin bleeding so profusely you’d be unable to recover from them again. This is why sometimes atrocities of the past are purposely forgotten and deeply buried. One must seek God’s wisdom and his will before reopening such wounds.

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Open: Only if Need Be

These heartaches and burdens should only be reopened or explored if truly beneficial, never to satisfy personal or professional curiosity. Even God, once we are forgiven and accept His saving grace, remembers our sin no more. I advocate leaving some wounds closed so that one may be healed. Let the wound be so healed that it does not leave a scar.

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Proceed with Caution

However, if wounds of the past remain open and bleeding, and impacting every area of your life today, then by all means begin the opening process, so that going forward you can begin to apply the healing balm of Jesus Christ and be free!

 

Flower-FlickerScott Robinson-FlickerJelle Oostrom-Flicker

 

Shots Fired: Chicago!

Yesterday, I stopped by Calumet Park Elementary School with my sister to pick up my twelve and thirteen year old niece and nephew who are in the sixth and seventh grade. School normally lets out at 2:30; at 2:45 the school doors were still closed. No kids where milling about laughing, playing or making their way to the yellow buses as they stood empty. I knew something was amiss.

I got out of the car, which I didn’t want to do because I was still having problems with my left knee. As I walked towards the front door, I was met by a young lady who informed me the school was on lock-down. A shooting recently occurred near the school and the police officials advised the school authorities not to release any students until they felt it was safe to do so. Parents were allowed to go into the school and personally pick up their children. So, of course I went inside and asked for both my niece and nephew.

It was an eerie feeling as each parent gave their child’s name and grade to the principal, who then called each name over the intercom. Mary, Sharon, Latisha, Jason, please come down to the main door. Only one door was available for exit at the time. I felt as if I were part of a scene in a Lifetime movie.

Thankfully, the children were never at risk, nevertheless the prospect of violence was way too close for comfort. As I was speaking to the bus driver, who looked to be in his late fifties to early sixties, we shared comments that the wave of violence the black neighborhoods were experiencing was ridiculous. And, I felt this gentlemen’s sense of hopelessness about the problem and simply not knowing what to do.

The incidents of black young men senselessly murdering their own leaves me and many others overwhelmed. Yes we are praying, listening to WVON talk radio, and other news outlets talk about the problem. There are solutions being thrown out there to stop the violence such as making rap artist accountable for their lyrics, increasing job availability for youth, reforming the availability of services available for those released from jail, and other similar solutions. A WLS/ABC website has a list of resources aimed at providing solutions; however, immediate answers are not forthcoming.

This emotionally and spiritually deficit picture being painted of a tainted population and community of Black people is heartbreaking. It sends a message of pain, helplessness, and hopelessness as the violence appears to be escalating. And summer ain’t even here yet. At one time people felt horrible about war-torn areas around the world, but now no one has look that far. How about right out your back door or window?

Yes, Black lives do matter, but we are the first ones who must realize and embrace this. Who are the influences of today? Why aren’t they doing more, and  crying loudly and not sparing? We need to show our young brothers and sisters their transgressions (Isaiah 58:1). Who are these young people listening to? These are those who need to speak up and out. Many say they are not role models, but most are whether they want to be or not. Something revolutionary has to be done. HELP!

Self-Cleaning: Getting Ready for 2016

WasherCleaning Last Year’s Debris

Washing machines have several wash cycles, from normal to gentle, and from delicate to self-cleaning. I recently put a large area rug in my washer; I wasn’t sure I should have, but I did it anyway. The result, it left a good deal of debris in my washer. It was quite a mess, but at least my rug was clean.

As the year comes to an end I’d like to share two observations; usually washing machines clean other things, but one Thanksgiving I set mine to clean itself. As the machine was self-cleaning, I begin to think about the upcoming holidays, and maybe our self-cleaning is part of releasing stuff taken on last year.

God is allowing us to take debris from the old year, cleaning out the internal trash and garbage collected in our minds and spirits in 2015 and putting it all behind us. Like the washing machine, we need to clean out our interior, so we can have room to accept the new bundles for 2016. By self-cleaning, we are getting ready for the supernatural coming our way.

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The second thing pertains to the upcoming new year, and how Thanksgiving and Christmas is a time God has set aside to prepare or introduced us our upcoming future. Beginning with Thanksgiving preparations, God knows we need time to reflect on things which occurred last year, perhaps a new job or career, perhaps a move, perhaps a divorce, perhaps a new love or a new life.

Many things were introduced and experienced in 2015, and our wise and gracious Father gives us a moment to introduce us or get us ready for 2016. I feel some of Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve are about looking forward.

Purposeful Visions Creating Life

Without a vision, the people perish Prov. 29:18

BE GRATEFUL FOR YOUR VISION

It gives life. Participate in your vision every day.

For me, visions are how we see ourselves in the future. It addresses goals, aspirations, great ideas and amazing possibilities. Your visions are never ordinary. The size of a vision is only measured by you; try not to limit it.

Yes, you can have more than one vision; you can even have add-ons. Sometimes on the journey to realized visions the scope changes…it is enlarged.

It often takes time for visions to manifest or be realized. Keep your vision in the forefront; never lose focus. Work towards it frequently even if the steps are miniature ones. Research, reevaluate, revitalize, compile, recreate, renew, and do whatever you can to keep moving towards it.

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DO NOT BE DAUNTED IF PERCHANCE YOU ARE WAYLAID

Start again. Living presents the ever present opportunity to try again. Visions may require adjusting as you journey through the changes that life presents; nevertheless, refuse to perish. Your dream may be the catalyst for someone else’s vision. Your dream may drive another’s aspirations.

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Visions are a breath of fresh air and cannot be limited by age, race or gender. I rather be a visionary always looking towards possibilities, than to dry up and wither “like a raisin in the sun.”1 I challenge you to attack your vision with vigor and to reject the naysayers. As long as you can see yourself within the vision move forward and change the world today and for generations to come.

(1) A Dream Deferred by Langston Hughes

CHANGING BY RENEWING

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MENTAL RENEWAL

Renewing the mind is a daily endeavor. The journey to betterment is continual and never stops. If you are still involved in living, and if you’re reading this you are, you must embrace an ever evolving mental renewal.

Never cease learning and exploring to gain more wisdom and grace. To retrieve the mantel of compassion you momentarily threw aside after tasting some of life’s difficult realities, daily renewal is one of the life altering keys.

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HOW SHALL WE RENEW?

Throw aside every weight that slows you down, deters you, or that prevents you from renewing daily. Change something in your life. Try just one thing, and it doesn’t need to be anything major.

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START HERE:

  • Learn something new
  • Listen to others intently
  • Pick up a self-help or self-improvement book in an area you’d like to change or improve on
  • Slow down and make sure you get all the details no matter what environment or situation you are in
  • Eliminate negative preconceived notions
  • Allow goodness and mercy to grow in your heart
  • Forgive and be forgiven

RENEWAL PRAYER:

I speak a life altering renewal in your life that will change negative habits and behaviors. I speak a renewal of self-encouragement, open mindedness, an outpouring of love and compassion given and received. I speak a renewal of joy once again in life’s simple pleasures. I speak the ability to put into perspective the things in this life. I speak encouragement, inspiration, and change. In Jesus name, Amen.