Safety in numbers

I almost forgot who I was.

I am Radiance J. But the great I Am had to remind me of who He created me to be.

So. Here it is today I am going through my contacts. One of the women who was a kind older figure of wisdom in my teenage years upon first arriving in Boston, Massachusetts number was popping out at me.

I call.

She answers, and we have a nice chat. I am reminded that I have been a lovable person all my life. Just sometimes situations cause us to mourn and grieve and we can’t be ourselves in a pit of pain.

Anyway, I am thankful.

One of the gems of wisdom that always stood out to me was what she told a group of us young ladies after one came into our department telling us something strange, wild and crazy.

The young woman was tired of her child’s father, who just so happened to have Haitian lineage, cheating on her. This woman who was always giving me wisdom happened to be born in Haiti, so what the young woman shared did not surprise the older woman.

The young lady said that the mans mother told her if she did something in particular, I won’t repeat, to his food he would never be able to leave her.

The older woman agreed. Yes. She began slowly, that will work. However, the relationship will get volatile, you all will hate each other but won’t be able to leave each other. The only way would be through death. One of y’all killing the other.

I never found out if the young woman did it or not. I didn’t care to hear about such things.

I didn’t believe in such, black dark practices at the time. But I kept being exposed to people who practiced.

I always seemed to make friends with my exes, exes. I’m a friendly person and I didn’t have, insecure or jealous tendencies at the time. It must still be that way, because my first loves’ ex is a friend on my social media, and my daughter’s sister’s mom was just recently calling me to vent about our childrens’ father before she decided to take him back. Such is life. I’ve been known to give good advice for those who want a better life.

Anyway I digress. My exes ex. I was probably 22 or 23 at the time. I was living a wild and reckless life. Swerving around Boston’s winding roads and hilly streets, lit up like the fourth of July. But this young lady became my friend.

Her family was not from America. The lived in the West Indies before they moved here and she told me her mother did dark practices against people who did her wrong.

She was a hair dresser.

I still didn’t believe in such things, but since I was away from what I felt was a covering in my religion I never got too close to the girls mom out of fear.

Its sad to believe that people are doing these things out here. They hide in ordinary places, usually getting close to people on a one on one basis to develop a sense of trust. That’s why I have always been careful about who did my hair. It seems like those women hid in beauty shops a lot. Or maybe just in their kitchens doing hair on that one on one basis.

I fought a witch once. God won.

No she didn’t have warts, and a long green face. She was a fairly attractive young lady, or she could appear to be. She was a kitchen beautician. And she wanted to maintain control and manipulation over a man who loved me.

So she got hold of my hair in a melee, of sorts. She knew I wasn’t going to sit in her stylist chair. And after that a lot of unfortunate things began happening to me. My body wasn’t healing in an area the doctor couldn’t explain. I couldn’t get a job. All my life I had always had two and three jobs at once. Now I couldn’t find one. And then. Inside I felt an urge to fast. For a set amount of days. And I did. I didn’t know church. I didn’t know fasting. I didn’t know warfare prayer. But I was desperate. This was in 2011. The year before I would walk away from everything I knew as truth and trust God to reveal himself to me.

I now realize God led me to a spiritual warfare website where I was then taught how to war in prayer against what was happening. I asked though. I wanted to know how to ask God to fix it.

Faith without works is dead. The weapons of my warfare is not carnal, (fleshly). For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but powers, dark forces in the heavenlies.

Anyway. Things started happening I couldn’t explain. The issue with my health was gone on day two, immediately. My daughter’s father was getting in touch with me to mend our broken situation. Now mind you this is after a melee where I ended up knowing what the halls of the county jail look like because of his lies against me. And he had lost his job as a result of my petty, get you back, attitude. Third, the woman they said was doing the black magic against me, her house burned down. And lastly, I got my CDL to began a new life for my daughter and I.

I was driving big bodies. No more broke days. Things were looking brighter.

All I know is my life changed. Because of prayer and fasting.

This was before I even knew what prayer and fasting was.

But faith that God was real. And being willing to listen. To the same voice that had been revealing all the bad stuff to me all my life, and leading me in the direction of exposing lies even in bad relationships, and in finding truth about the world.

I don’t know much.

I do know that men don’t be on a course of loving God, get in a relationship and things change. And they are in a volatile relationship with someone whose heavy weights keep them from loving God the way they use to and its not spiritual.

All I know is that a young woman can’t have fire and zeal for God, let the wrong person play in her head and now she can barely get out of bed to accomplish her assignments. It has to be spiritual.

I know God has a real enemy. Which makes the ones that follow his lead have one too.

God commanded his people not to do some things because he knows that sometimes its easy to follow those who get their results instantaneously as opposed to being patient and waiting on God. So he gave them Deuteronomy 18:9-12
9 When you enter the land the Lord your God is giving you, do not learn to imitate the detestable ways of the nations there. 10 Let no one be found among you who sacrifices their son or daughter in the fire,who practices divination or sorcery,interprets omens, engages in witchcraft, 11 or casts spells, or who is a medium or spiritist or who consults the dead. 12 Anyone who does these things is detestable to the Lord; because of these same detestable practices the Lord your God will drive out those nations before you.

Then He reminded them again.
Leviticus 18:3 You must not do as they do in Egypt, where you used to live, and you must not do as they do in the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you. Do not follow their practices.

I knew a young woman who would go to psychics to get money spells. I wasn’t saved yet, but I just knew God. And I would tell her that sometimes to receive what God has for us we must go through trials. She said she preferred her own ungodly method, that made her miserable all the time, because she didn’t want to wait on God. She really didn’t want to go through trials.

I’ve learned these days to love people from a distance. Especially those who love practices God says are detestable to Him. Like the above mentioned things and Proverbs 6:16.

Nothing personal. I’ve just learned to love Jesus more than anything. So I don’t mind exposing the devils dark practices he uses to pull Gods people away from Him.

So.

That’s my spiel for the night. If you feel like you know someone involved with these dark practices run. Then fast, then pray and find a good bible based church to get close to whomever God is going to put in your life to help you fight this war the enemy of our faith has out on every soul in mankind wanting them to have his hell bound fate as well.

Not everyone looking as if they should be trusted, should be. People take a pretty face and stylish behaviors and become as the devil illuminating himself masquerading as an angel of light. See I am thankful for having been exposed to so many things while in the world. I see what it is. But better than most I can see what it ain’t.

So. If your life is going in a place you can’t understand. Or if you dont understand why you’re in a rut you can invite Jesus into your life.

Simply repenting for your sins. Acknowledging that Jesus died on the cross for yours and my sins. That you accept him as Lord and Savior over your life, and that you want to give your life to Him from this day forth. And things will change. Shift. Get ready.

I would never have imagined my life would ever take a turn for the better. Not the days I was taking too many pills and having charcoal given to me so I could get them out. Or when the acts of violence were happening against me, repeatedly. Losing my mom. Losing my friends and family. Then the war with the witch. I was like will this life ever get better?

Yes! Since I’ve accepted Jesus it has. I am thankful! I hope you find all that you’ve been looking for. It hasn’t all been easy. This walk with Jesus. But life has always been challenging. Now I just have someone who will always be by my side leading me to my best life, because He came so I could have abundant life!!!

Yes Lord. I am so thankful I said yes!

I hope you do as well!

Relationship

Yesterday I had the urge for some home cooked food.
Cabbage, corn bread, candied yams, baked macaroni and cheese, and fried chicken.
People kept on saying I looked as if I couldn’t cook, so I almost believed them. Then I tasted my cooking. Not like it tasted when I was cooking regularly, but, my baby the picky eater ate and enjoyed.
Anyway. I needed to run to the store. It was cold yesterday. I didn’t want to have my baby on the bus, so when I see the sister God has given me walking into church, I let sis know the game plan. My daughter was asking to stay anyway. Sis agreed to keep my bouncing daughter who wanted to stay in church another service while I get dinner started. And I was off.
Fortunately for me I no longer live in a food desert. Food deserts in Chicago are marked by areas that have no grocery stores, but have corner stores and fast food restaurants and that is how the residents usually find ways to nourish their bodies. But without fresh sources of food that is nearly impossible.
Anyway. In a 1.5 mile radius, walking distance for me, there are three Jewel-Oscos, two Whole Foods, two Targets, one Mariano’s, and a Trader Joe’s.
Boo. I got options. Now!
And here I am wondering why I am passing all the stores to get to this one Jewel that keeps popping up in my mind.
And I pass up the fast moving line to get into the slow moving line. Lord! What am I here for. And then I see. One of my daughters trusted babysitters. Smiling. Coming from behind the register to show me love, and I smile. God has a way of doing things when we walk in obedience.
That’s how I met the sister that was keeping my baby at church with her while I made the store run.
Sitting next to a complete stranger, I felt a tug and urge in my spirit to make sure she got to the place she needed to be. That’s been me. Why I drive the bus now, God knew He could trust me back then to get people to their destination, drop them off and keep on moving!
Being a faithful steward over few, yields rewards, like ruler over many.
You’ll never know a persons story until they tell it all.
Anyway. I made sure my sis made it to her destination back then, and she became a blessing to me later, and yet later still.
I could remember starting a new job. A year after we met initially. All the way in Niles, IL. At this time I was living on Chicago Ave, and Austin. If I had to be at work at 6 something, I was out the house walking from Chicago Ave to Lake st, at 2/3am to catch the Madison nightowl bus. From there I could walk to sis house, drop my baby off for her long day, and hop on the bus, a train and another bus.
Mothers do what we have to when we choose not to allow toxic relationships rule our lives.
I did anyway.
Anyway.
Yesterday I told sis that I didn’t want to get her to her destination back then. I didn’t know her. She was a stranger. But I was walking in faith, obedience to a God move, because I knew when He was working in my life. I had already saw the results of listening, and they always were good moves to make.
But it was about relationship.
I had no relationship with this young woman. Too quiet, for my then rowdy nature. Nah. Not really. I just didn’t know her.
Relationship.
I think now to my relationship with the Savior of my soul. Jesus Christ. The Son of God. Who lives in heaven, creating all things as God, and walked the earth as man. Seeing people in a way the Father never would see us, with human emotions, so going to the Father, through the Son as mediator, allows God to understand us better because the Son was once one of us.
Old testament Father God, dealt with his chosen people a lot differently, now that we walk alongside twins Mercy and Grace. Thanks to Jesus. For the perfect sacrifice. For the death on the cross. A perfect sacrifice for imperfect humanity, to redeem our sins.
I once walked the fine line of religiosity. In a religion, whose theology is off, and rhetoric is continuous.
And as much as my spirit wanted to do right, but my flesh couldn’t make the grade, I knew it had to be an easier way.
I didn’t know Jesus.
I knew bible verses. I knew rules. I knew religion.
I did not know Jesus.
I didn’t know his heart. I had a Sadducee and Pharisee mentality. Cruelly looking down on others for their differences. But it was all the people with differences who followed Jesus.
Not having anything to do with people who were unlike me, berating and belittling them like Apostle Paul, because I felt I had the right religion, and they were part of Babylon the great, false religion.
That’s not Jesus’ heart. Not for people. Creator walking with creation, of course his heart with Human emotion went out to those who were hurting, because we have an enemy who, like he did Job, seeks to see us hurt and in pain and turmoil, so we can turn our backs to God.
But Jesus. Opened the door so we can get back close to our Father. So there would be no more need to go through people. No need to see a high priest, a brother, an elder for our sins.

Prayer. Works. And when I ask my Father in prayer to forgive me, he does. Throwing it in a sea of forgetfulness. Not placing my sins on a card to be transferred from state to state, congregation to congregation so my sins will forever follow me via man who has a hard time containing their judgments.

This is the word of God. Not my opinion. Opinions are overrated. Save them for people who care and not many do these days. But word of God.
Study to show thyself approved. Not scriptures to quote before man. Or words to boast of in front of people.
We have one judge. He will return. And his questions and examination is the only one that will matter.
But its about relationship.
Before I had a touch from God on my life I wanted to do my own thing. I didn’t want to drive people I didn’t know places. I wanted to go to stores that were close and convenient for me. I kept my hair , nails and lashes on point, with clothes fly-i-i-i-y, so I didn’t associate with people who weren’t on my level. I did me. Quoting scripture like I had it together, negating that one simple commandment, that comes after love God with all your heart.
Loving my neighbor as myself.
But relationship.
In relationship with Jesus, wanting to have his heart for people. Wanting to love the unlovable. Wanting to encourage those who others shun. Wanting to listen to those others say are crazy, but sometimes people just want to be heard and tell their story.
Sometimes people are sent to us so we can do a work for them from God, because to whom much is given much is required.
Maybe that’s why many are called and few are chosen. Because after people hear the call, they can’t imagine God asking them to make sure a young woman gets a ride to her destination. They are expecting something grandiose. But if we don’t despise the days of humble beginnings, we have an opportunity to make it to greatness!!
I recited a poem for my church’s thanksgiving service. And after I bared my soul in a piece, feeling rather awkward about telling my story in front of a majority, where I had not always felt comfort, it was my sisters smiling face of encouragement that walked with me down a street not really talking about, but just being a source of encouragement.
You never know who God will use to push, motivate and encourage you if you always pushing people away because they don’t fit your mold.
But relationship.
Only God knows the heart, only God knows the plans for our lives.
Hebrews 12:2  looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
No need to pay attention to what comes to distract us all around us. Gods plan. Is the only plan that matters.
And that comes with relationship.
Do you know how to gain, and maintain a relationship with Jesus?
Ask and the door shall be opened!

Popularity Contests anyone?

I walk through my garage and people know my name and I’ve never even seen them before.

We have this humble position of taking people to their destination. Almost like chauffers. Sometimes that’s how people treat us.

But that pay though.

Therefore in order for some who struggle with humility, they take their money and get super fly. Never look like what you’re going through right?

It was me for a minute. Lashes, nails, weave. That’s me though. Always has been. But my priorities are changing. I want something more.

Anyway I been looking rough. And I joked about it with one of my coworkers. He said that outside stuff only goes so far. Because it faded and all you’re left with is conversation. Out of the heart the mouth speaks.

Anyway.

I’ve learned to be me. Staying in my lane. Sometimes I drive a 60ft bus and I don’t want to because I feel bigger vehicles deserve more lane. But that big bus fits between the lines of one lane if I take my time. If I work with the skill I have been trained with.

I can stay in my own lane.

It doesn’t matter about who likes it. Its for who its for. Sometimes only 20 people get on my 60ft bus. That’s because those are the people going in my direction. Those people need me to get them to their destination.

And I do it like its filled to capacity and they are obstructing the view out my front door.

Jesus had many followers when he was passing out the food, healing, and telling them what they wanted to hear. But when it came time to doing what he was sent to do people got little.

They like the popularity. But not so much the purpose.

My daughter asked me today who is her neighbor.

I gave her the account of the good Samaritan.

I broke it down like how you would speak to a five year old.

This account which is found in Luke 10 tells us by way of Jesus’ parable who our neighbors are.

I explained there was a man who got beat up and left for dead, on the side of the road. But a man passed him. The priest. The man of God. But he walked right past this man. Like he walked to the other side of the street to avoid even seeing the problem.

See anyone can talk about God but if he is not helping those in need how is he doing what Jesus asked us to do?

Then. The levite. The Levite’s were those who brought the sacrifices of men to the altar. They worshipped. He walked right past too. So I told my daughter, if a person can dance with their feet, sing with their lips and love God buy walk right past hurting people that’s not a neighbor.

I told her about the Samaritan. Samaritans weren’t accepted by Jewish customs. But this man saw a man hurting near death and took him to the help he needed.

A neighbor. Like sometimes its the person who doesn’t look like, act like, or is acceptable to the community that will help one out in need.

That’s who I love as myself. That’s who I can treat the way I treat me. Gifts and love. Smiles and concern.

I can’t help that as a bus operator I’ve been trained to notice everything. I just so happened to see you praise God with your hand lifted while everyone was watching. Then talk about that person exposing their heart to God with their crew behind that persons back.

I’m not a man easily duped and manipulated like perfect Adam was by perfect Eve. I’m a woman who knows the manipulative tactics of women. Because I once was her, who just so happened to be trained to see bicycles, taxi’s, ubers, lyfts, pedestrians, red lights in the distance, flashing hands in the distance, distracted motorists. To get my passengers to safe destinations. Who also has the help of the Holy Spirit.

I can’t brag on myself. But God in me is bad in a good way. Or cold according to this Chicago slang.

Yes. I know my lane.

The man standing outside of CVS, high on something he wouldn’t tell me what. Gave me a dollar. But through his words I knew he had a call. The devil don’t knock down people who don’t have purpose. But I gave him an invite to my church.

The woman being wooed by the Jehovah’s witnesses. I can tell her the truth of Jesus not being an angel. Or the paradise Paul saw in the third heaven.

Or the young woman who thinks a man who hurts her loved her. Or thinks that she needs to share her cookies to get that man to stay. Who didn’t understand how her assignment as a woman is to help, how powerful must a woman be to help a man. But when she finishes with God using me to speak to her she knows her worth.

She shows her man. He appreciates her more for it.

That’s my lane. My purpose is connected to my experiences. My life. My pain.

I’ve lost an uncle to Chicago street violence. Which in turn made my grandmother give up on life. Which in turn caused my mother to stop living after losing her mom.

But my life’s experiences have been the lack of power as a woman. And women are valuable. I live to live to uplift my neighborly sisters.

So I do. Not those who talk. But those who do.

Its never been a popularity contest. Jesus was quite unpopular at the end of it all. And not even received amongst his hometown. Don’t worry about who likes, or why they don’t like. Its about ministry. Its about people knowing Jesus. And if you live to make Jesus name famous, some people will not like, follow or accept.

But we do for the glory of God.

Will you continue to be, and do?

 

 

Connecting the Dots

We connect to people based on a commonality.

Our common interests keep us interesting to one another. And interests create dividends that help us cross the dividing line.

That’s really why I’m single.

My Pastor was preaching at bible study and the Holy Spirit moved him to say, the reason why you are single is because God can’t trust you around someone. His finger was pointing. It felt like it was pointing right at me. And I had to evaluate.

Let me think about that? Lord is that me?

It was. Lust was a real struggle. And then. Somebody. Made me fall in love. And then broke my heart. And then I knew. I can’t trust anyone but Jesus with my heart. 

And when I give him my heart He will hold onto it until the man that comes to Him for it and asks for instructions on how to get it.

I wrote a piece a while back like why would I cheat on Jesus? And I forgot my stance. Oh but that heartbreak reminded me.

He keeps me, and provides a way of escape for me. And because I knew I had my own struggles I chose to stay away from men during my season of change and deliverance. Until.

Him. And I raked coal into my bosom. And the fire. Was too hot to handle. And then I fell back into the arms of my savior with a promise.

Like the promise I been holding onto about not blowing trees like the breeze anymore. That’s been a three year promise I’ve been keeping!

It’s better to not make a vow to God than make one and not keep it. And fear of The Lord is the beginning of understanding. So I fear making a promise and not keeping it.

Anyway.

I have been at my church for three years in January. Not one man that attends my church can say we were talking. Only one person ever asked me out and I said no repeatedly. And to top that off I have a best friend. Who is a male. And I truly love him without crossing unwritten but understated boundaries.

So. The lust that used to control me has been given to my savior because He is the best at saving me.

So why am I single?

When so many single and handsome men work with me? Make sure I get home safely. And check in on me from time to time?

Since people see each other in each other. I will only really attract someone when we have similarities.

In my broken state, I tend to attract broken people. They see my brokenness reflected in their broken states and my similarities attract me to them.

I don’t want a broken man. I am working on walking into my wholeness. I am tired of nursing someone back to health, they get their strength and since they can’t see themselves in me anymore they no longer see the attraction. Or if he is not ready to grow with me, he will find. A problem in my changes. When I gain my self confidence and walk into the strength I embody his insecurities will rise.

I have seen both situations happen. 

I have watched it happen from the broken men that have tried to tie me down in manipulation, control and the seeming never ending circle of abuse that came from me not knowing my worth and attracting men who see that and want to capitalize on that.

I can wait. I want to wait. I want to be whole. When my broken pieces are put all together and begin to reflect the magnificent light of Gods glory then all the terrible things I have overcome will begin to make sense to me.

See I am reminded that all things work for the good of those who love God! And oh I am in love!!

So. I said before I am waiting. Now this is an understanding of why. Becoming comfortable and sure about me, my purpose, and Gods will for my life is what I want to see revealed in my life. 

And sometimes if you take the cake out the oven before it’s ready and it looks ready it falls flat. Or it’s still wet in the inside and can’t be eaten. So no. I don’t want to look ready for a relationship. I want to be ready! 

Right now though. My singleness can be used to give God glory in a way me being in a relationship won’t be able to compare to.

But why compare what can never be the same?

So. I still pursue the mark of the higher calling. Running a good race, the end result is to win the prize. Delighting in suffering that produces endurance which comes from my perseverance. Yes God! I just want to hear Him say, well done my good and faithful servant. 

No longer desiring to fulfill my wants. Wants are temporary. No one can ever fulfill all their wants. But if I fill my voids with God them I have learned whatever state I am in to find contentment.

Yes. I am content! Gods will being done in my life. And I say Yes!

Sharks in water, God be my boat

I have been looking for my uncle.

I know he struggles with some things. After a couple of situations left him in a state of depravity, he was never the same.

If I feed strangers, how can I not find family who may be hungry?

So on break. Asking the group of men who sit in an area of a place I know he frequents and they know him. As the wine bibbler, one says to me. 

We can choose our friends, but can’t choose our family.

I see him. I’m watching him interact. I could shed tears that flow rivers of feeling into a changed heart waiting for more new growth. But I stand still. I’m strength, embodied.

Sometimes family leaves one by the way side. Sometimes they watch your demise. Sometimes they speak on it. And never do anything to help as if they hoped for it.

Anyway.

I tell him who I am and he hugs me. A dirty coat with wine stains, stench of urine and I’m saddened. Why do people get left behind? Do they want to be? Have they felt such a hurt and pain to believe they no longer deserve better?

Anyway. I’m talking with him and a man, large in belly and stature approaches, tries to interrupt.

I ignored him. He persists. I shut him down. I let him know it is rude to interrupt. I’m sure he sees the outer man and feels he can disrespect him but I don’t care who I am talking to. When my attention is on that person, it’s on that person, and I don’t like for others to intrude on that. I was firm but kind. No hint of a smile, lest he think I was playing. 

Simple rules of respect.

But the man doesn’t like that. As I bring my uncle his tray, the man gets to subtly threatening me. Telling me I should watch who I talk to because I don’t know who people are and what associations they are connected to.

I know organizations like to use clout. But Jesus. That’s who I know.

Well. Sir. I say. I believe it is rude to interrupt another person while they are having a conversation. 

I don’t scare easily I continue. I serve a God. 

I have had guns pointed at me. Cars ricocheting at mine. Been in a few unsafe places I placed myself in. But God saved me then. You can’t scare me, because God got me. Then I speak on Jesus. 

He then starts spewing hate towards Jesus. Stomping the ground. Talking about we killed him before, we will do it again. I heard people like this existed. I just never met a real live one. Then he gets to talking about Osirus and Other Egyptian gods. 

Of course I rebuke the devil. I apply and plead the blood of Jesus. 

But I see the hollowed out darkness around his eyes. I see something in him that wickedness has a hold on. I am not moved.

The more he tries to convince me of why I should watch the movies that provide insight, and read the books the angrier he gets, the calmer I stay.

God keeps me stayed in perfect peace.

My uncle can’t even enjoy his food  for jumping up trying to defend me. But it’s alright. Fear not. I haven’t been given a spirit of fear but of power love and a sound mind!

God got me!

Fortunately for me I only get a thirty minute break on Sundays and my bus was coming so I broke free. 

I looked back at two men lost in their darkness, both refusing to accept what Jesus did to save us. 

I don’t need to get angry anymore. Or fold in shame or condemnation from my past life. I have no need to worry or fear. God told me when I read Joshua to go and be bold and courageous. The word is alive. It still speaks today.

And like I told the man. I don’t get my information from man, nor trust any man. I trust God and He shows me who he has entrusted to give me information. Because. I will ask God to show me if the information is true. And He does. 

Leaning not on my own understanding I humble myself to ask God to clarify. And He will! And I am blessed!!

Jesus did it!

You know how back in bible times the bible speaks of Jesus healing the sick, the maimed, the lame. And those demon possessed??

Jesus carries the fullness of the power of God being The Son. And since God is not changing why would I think Jesus isn’t doing what he did back then. 

He is the way. 

Don’t fight me. Fight the word of God. But all of our arms too short to box with God!

So. Four years ago. I got into a melee. That had me pepper sprayed. Attacked from behind, and as I got my bearings to finally get up, police were behind me about to tase me. 

When I was younger, I was known by my associates as Rae-Rae. They had everyone thinking I was crazy Rae-Rae. That I would fight if anyone ever came at me crazy. I just didn’t scare easily. I never started one fight in my life. I’ve always liked peace. I just never backed down from much of anything. Or knew when to shut up. Like the day I was dragged away by police, slept overnight in a cold cell on a cold metal bench, and then transported to the county.

But I was angry!! Looking for revenge!!

Fast forward. This life in Christ I keep blogging about happened. Two years after this situation. And my Pastor was preaching about the seven deadly sins one November, I believe it was. The sermon on anger had me at the altar, crying. I knew I had to let go of that situation with the young womans attack. I screamed and let go of that thing at the altar.

Guess who was sitting in a chair when I went to pick up my daughter right after church? The same young lady who attacked me. 

Somebody was lookin at me waiting for my reaction. But I gave that thing to God at the altar! I smiled at the young woman. I was full of smiles. Genuine smiles! I invited the young lady to my church. I told her she had a beautiful voice and while she reminded me of one of our worship leaders, she could have been using her gift to glorify God. I told her that maybe it was time for her and her guy to get married. Help him raise his children and live a life pleasing to God! And then. I HUGGED her!

My last couple of blogs show how forgiving a heart can be when God moves and lives in that heart. But this though!

Oh. Thank God for Jesus! 

Old Rae-Rae. She woulda ran full speed at that girl. The police wouldn’t have been able to protect her from me this day. The same strength, that carried chest high chests made of pure mahogany wood out of apartment buildings to make a quick move from Boston to Chicago, would have caused my hands to do damage. 

The only person I ever fought is someone a person is never supposed to fight. 

But God. But Jesus!!!

I left those things at the altar!

Remember back in the Israelite days, they took their sacrifices to the Levites who then left them at the altar. 

Jesus is the reason we don’t need anyone to take our sacrifices. We can come ourselves. Through Jesus.

The altar.

That’s where change happens.

That’s where the things that hurt are left behind for God to take. 

That’s where I get my strength. That’s where I feel God, greater in me than He who is in the world. 

The Holy Spirit!

I write to get free. But I get on that altar to be healed and to stay free. 

Because Jesus knows the ones the Father has sent him to get. And when He knocks! 

Do we answer?

I answered. 

I called. I prayed. I cried. And he came!

I was headed down a dark, hate filled path. I had been hurt too many times. 

I wanted to be free. 

I had a friend of mine from childhood delete herself from my FB page. She asked me was I still one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. I told her no. And then shortly later she was gone. 

Well I guess that’s for the best. I see the bible scriptures that show the inconsistencies in the JW doctrine. Like 

2 Corinthians 2:2  I was caught up to the third heaven fourteen years ago. Whether I was in my body or out of my body, I don’t know—only God knows. 3 Yes, only God knows whether I was in my body or outside my body. But I do know 4 that I was caught up to paradise and heard things so astounding that they cannot be expressed in words, things no human is allowed to tell. 

Wait. Is this the paradise we had been taught was on the earth?? Or nah? Which paradise is this? Where exactly in the bible does it specifically say Paradise is going to be in the earth? 

I’ll wait! I looked. I cried.

I seperated from people. I would look at them and look away, hoping they wouldn’t see me. See the broken pieces. See the lies I had been taught and would sometimes be knocking on doors 60 hours a month to try and convince people of. 

I was ashamed. I was hurt. And I couldn’t dare let another person come close because I had been lied to and hurt by the only people I ever believed in my whole life.

Oh yeah and then this.

Hebrews 1:6 And when he brought his supreme Son into the world, God said,

“Let all of God’s angels worship him.” 

Worship? Is that why the wise men were looking for Jesus to worship Him? We are a little lower than the angels. 

And then this.

Hebrews 1:13 And God never said to any of the angels,

“Sit in the place of honor at my right hand
until I humble your enemies,
making them a footstool under your feet.”

14 Therefore, angels are only servants—spirits sent to care for people who will inherit salvation. 

So. How could Jesus be Michael the Archangel? The bible clearly speaks against this sort of teaching.

I know. I know. Obviously. If you’re believing Jesus is an angel and you’re praying in Jesus name, and you keep getting disfellowshipped for fornication. But you’re praying in Jesus name, and you are in a religion who believes he is an angel; it might be hard for those prayers to get to God our Father. You think?

Study to show yourself approved. 

And guess what? Ask these questions you might get looked at as someone who is being insubordinate, and shouldn’t be asking questions. 

Like an apostate. Or something. And then God forbid you’re called that. It’s much worse thanbeing  disfellowshipped. No one will ever have anything to do with you. People you’ve known all your life.

But the truth will set you free!

Yes. The truth has set me free. Freely on the altar worshipping God in Spirit and in truth. 

I have been made whole and set free.

What a moment to realize at the fork in the road you took the wrong route. But sometimes you have to go back to get to the right place to make the right choice. Do overs!!! It’s not easy going back. 

I went back. Realized no one could tell me who the Holy Spirit was. I was disfellowshipped over the phone. On three way. With no meeting or prayer.

No.

That wasn’t my truth. 

Now I’ve found truth. So I walk in it. 

And continually thank God for giving me this new life! 

Because now that I know the truth about Jesus, when I ask Him to present my case to the Father he does it and I see changes. Big changes. That only a big God can do.

So now when you ask why don’t I say the fathers name like I used to. I spent 31 years calling out to Jehovah. He couldn’t hear me because I was ignoring the Son I didn’t even know the truth about. And Jesus is the only way.

So that’s why I’ll continually say. Jesus did it!! 

My Father knows what I mean!

Thankful and grateful: on humility

I am thankful for strength. In my weakened state, God makes His  strength perfect in me.

I am thankful for courage. To speak about the harsh realities of life. Wounds don’t heal unless they are treated. They can’t be treated until they are presented.

I am thankful for patience. Far too many times I take things into my own hands. When I sit back and let God do it, He does it perfectly.

I am thankful for love. The kind invites of people who have taken time to get to know me and make sure I have an option of not being alone on a holiday centered around family.

I am thankful for peace. In the midst of a storm, I can find refuge.

I am thankful for kindness. I applaud for all those who go for their dreams. Encourage and motivate with kind words.

I am thankful for self control. I used to do things that now I am helped by Gods perfect will to control myself to not do.

I am thankful for the Holy Spirit. These are some of the fruitages of Him. And for Jesus. The Son who is the only way I can get to the Father.

See. I have delighted myself in service to God. Service to Him means I still have to be kind to those who think and speak ill of me, and treat me poorly. Because He says pray for those who persecute me. And I have finally figured out that not everyone saying Lord Lord will make it. He will say get away from me you workers of lawlessness.

And that’s why I am thankful. Because when I prayed for Him to create in me a clean heart and renew the right spirit in me, He did! He did!!! 

And while I will always fall short of the glory of God, His grace and mercy is sufficient. He will look over my wrongdoings and forgive me, when I come to Him with repentance in my heart and humbled in my prayers.

See. I could’ve given in to the pain of a past. It could’ve been worst. But God. 

I see. Many are called. Few are chosen. There were some uncomfortable things Jesus disciples were required to do, to let go of, to see. And to stay with Him through it all. And unlike Judas, not running behind money. Chasing illusive dreams to be the center of attention for meaningless things.

I hope I will live to make famous the one who died for me, sitting next to the Father, interceding for me.

Jesus.

The only one who needs to validate me. Because He is the only one who can prepare a place for me in the midst of my enemies.

So be thankful. Live life to love and serve God. Become pleasing in His eyes. Because He is the only one who can open doors no man can open and shut the ones that need to be shut!

And while I used to cry for my momma and daddy on days like this holiday, I am thankful because I shed no tears. Spent enough time in the presence of ones who love me, and called enough sisters, brothers and friends.

And my beautiful daughter! She spent the day helping me make things beautiful!

Thankful for a CHURCH home! And a Pastor that disproved all the lies I was taught about church and Pastors. And a Pastor who listens to God to speak truth!!! It’s like every sermon he was I side my home before he preaches it because it always seems tailor made to me.

Thankful for finally having a job that will allow me to care for my daughter solo. Since I chose this life, or it was presented to me!

And boom. The one guy who sends me flowers like these  

    
 
Is patient enough to deal with my shenanigans. My cheerleader. Reminding me of Gods greatness within me. And doesn’t mind that I may not get back to a text in a couple of days, but still is consistently showing me of the value that God has reminded me I have.

Yes! So much to be thankful for everyday. More things than I am actually able to count! Not just on holidays. Everyday. God is amazing! And so I will forever to Him be grateful!!!

I am waiting. 

I’ve never been the one to have to touch the fire to know that it burns. 

I’ve see others cry: I believe you.

So I know to stay the course and stay the distance.

That’s why I’m so candid about my life’s experiences. If you can avoid some of my pitfall mistakes all the best to you!

As a young woman the first guy my momma let me date was a man who looked more like LL Cool J, than he liked to admit. 

Always licking his lips. 

He was too fine. I had just moved to Boston. All the girls liked him. But I had been too busy beating guys off with a stick in Chicago with my “I’m staying a virgin until marriage” mindset.

Since he was a part of our religion my mother handed me the phone when he called me for the first time. We would talk for hours.

He would wake me up with beeper messages saying 143. Code for I love you back in the day. I’d reply the same. Before he went to school, and since I was homeschooled I was just working.

He would often meet me after school, at my job just to say hi.

He explained to me something that stayed with me all my life.

Some women you sleep with and some you marry. He also happened to not be an American man. So his mindset was bred outside the U.S. For 13 years before he moved here. 

I loved him.

He wanted to marry me. 

I was a virgin. 

We would go to sometimes 2 or three movies a week. What else was I supposed to do at 18 with all the money I was making, with no bills besides a cell phone and beeper bill, besides have a ball!

We balled out!

I didn’t marry him. I wanted to travel. I wanted to go to school. I wanted him to wait. He married someone else a year later. I was hurt. But I learned. 

I’ve read somewhere that women tend to get addicted to men once they deal with them intimately. It’s hard to assert your self when you are being intimate with someone you are afraid to let go of because you don’t even know you are low key addicted to them.

I learned. Because of always wanting to be the marrying type that the less I gave the more they gave in return. 

I watched other women taking care of men. I saw them giving them their bodies. I saw them having baby after baby for different guys and still with no ring and I wondered what was I going to do different when I got ready for an unplanned pregnancy, with my own daughter.

Sometimes I think of the family my daughter needs and deserves. The car breaking down the two times when she was only a couple months when I tried the family thing and we kept trying to go get our marriage license. His wedding band I’m sure her father got rid of. And I wonder how did I get him to commit to going the altar when so many others failed to.

I still don’t know. 

But when I am reminded of my aunt telling me to wait; I am thankful. 
Because in life we grow and change. And the things we are willing to accept changes with our value of self.

Now. With my walk with Christ. Living to love God my Father and please Him, I choose to live holy. 

I am thankful for the way I was raised. There is a strict call for holiness. Even if they don’t know Jesus as Jesus, and call him Michael. But those guidelines help me now that I love Him and know Him for real. Because what I used to work hard to do with my own might, abstinence, now it can only be achieved for real through the Holy Spirit. I just ask for God to keep me. I don’t want to fall anymore. So when those ways of escapes are made I’m running like Joseph did from Potiphers wife! 

No longer willing to make the same mistakes. No longer wanting to be devalued, misused, and left whenever another or better option becomes available for a boyfriend who won’t make me his wife.

I want better. I ask for better. And if someone isn’t willing to give then that’s just not the man God has for me. It’s okay. I was a preschool teacher for five years. I got a little practice with this patience thing. Now God is perfecting it!

So. I, like my favorite poet, am willing to wait! Her name is Janette-ikz. And she wrote a poem about waiting. I will wait for you. And when her husband came. He cried while she recited a poem to him.

Love! Gods love. It’s pure. Between man and woman supposed to be shared between husband and wife. 

So. Respect. Self. Love. Self. And watch how things can change. I know. I’m watching it through new eyes and all I can say is thank you lord! 

He did it for me! I know he can do it for you too!!

So now when a man tells me he wants to see me. I tell him what concert I want to attend and tell him to make plans. Chrisette Michelle is coming to town. In December. That’s how a couple of forevers starts. 

People have a hard time believing people can change. But God all things are possible with Him!

It starts within. It starts with accepting Christ as the head of my life and my personal savior. It starts with self love and self worth! Knowing I deserve the type of love I recieve from a perfect God who will teach my imperfect man how to love me His perfect way, through the words given in His word.

So I am watching and learning. Like a good researcher does. 

I don’t need to play with the fire the enemy is always sending to know that it will burn me.

I am waiting!

Help yourself, pray for others

I have a tendency to give my all to others leaving little for myself.

I give all the encouragement to the woman who feels defeated. And when she gets on her emotionally balanced feet to make moves she overlooks me.

Well praise God. Somebody will be blessed.

I spend my last money to help someone get to their destination. Or give someone something. Or take people places. And when I am in lack I can’t find them. They’ve created some offense in their mind to overlook the help God allowed me to give.

Well praise God! I hope they will pay it forward anyhow.

I am learning to be effective in taking care of me and my daughter.

So someone was vandalizing my car. I don’t do enemies. I livepeaceably  amongst men. These days. And only one person from my old life knows where I live that would have an ought against me. I mean The bible says when you live in peace even your enemies will bless you.

I should know. A woman who has tried on many occasions to harm me wound up giving me some much needed money not too long ago.

Praise God. I always get what I need. So forget what I seem to be expecting from man.

Anyway. I put my car away. I put it in hiding so whoever was vandalizing it wouldn’t be able to get to it. 

Anyway. One of the men in my neighborhood with an addiction was living in my car.

What in the world.

I roll my eyes, but really what can I say?

My heart goes out to those whose lives share similarities to my own.

I’ve struggles with my own addictions. Just mine weren’t debilitating enough to stop my progress in the world. Not too much anyway.

I understand now why I’ve lived this life. It is so God could create compassion in my heart. I no longer ask why.

That’s why.

Anyway. I kept invisioning him with a needle in his vein not breathing in the backseat of my car. I kept feeling a tug that I needed to get rid of the car. But was feelin bad that he would no longer have a place to sleep.

Anyway.

I give my car away to a charity. And all of his things were in my car. He had taken over.

In that moment I realized when you give a person an inch they take a yard. I can not enable a person when they sometimes need to hit rock bottom before they cry out to the one who can solve their problems permanently.

Oh Jesus. Out mediator. Praying in our behalf. Sitting next to God the Father on the throne. 

God the Son!

All I could do was pray on his behalf and ask Jesus to take the wheel. 

I asked my grandmother the night before if she’d seen him. 

He not family but he’s eaten in my grandmothers kitchen more times than some family members.

My grandmother was telling stories of how since her father worked for the  railroad they always had more money than most. She laughs about how she never ate beans like the rest of the kids, but she was given access to the town store to charge bologna or whatever else she wanted.

Because of the good heartedness of those who had, and because she knew of but no longer had to experience much lack, she watched her mother be generous with those who were hungry.

She follows the same tradition. 

She has taught me the same.

So when I ask about the man who was sleeping in my car, she tells me that an infection sent him to the hospital.

That opened the door for him to get into a treatment center.

And they are sending him away.

The correlation between me getting rid of my car, and his going to the treatment center may not seem like much of one. But only God knows the truth.

All I know is nothing. God teaches me all things. I know that I know nothing at all and that allows me the opportunity to learn something new, and relearn old information with a new twist. 

So. I am learning how to let God take care of those who refuse to help themselves. I am learning to take off my superwoman cape and that I can’t save the world until I accept the fact that my savior saved me.

And walk into his victory!

And I am learning how to be kind to myself. I am forever a student. One will never learn anything new if they think they know it all.

So. As I help myself. I pray for others. I am working on obedience. And I watch God continue to work on my behalf.

I got a free three day, two night vacation for a twenty year old car. I have options as to where I would like to go. Massachusetts is one of them, California is another. Thank you Lord! Obedience is really better than sacrifice!

Handy dandy Andy!

day 39

I saw Andy Mineo today!

I won’t do heart eyes, because my love for the art may be misconstrued for love of him.

And his wife was on tour with him.

He did a whole song with a video of their wedding to end the show!

He gave his testimony, and glory to God about how Jesus came to save him.

I thought once I walked with Jesus I had to leave hip-hop behind.

Hip-hop had been my love for a very long time. I was getting antsy. I love the adrenaline rush of a good hip-hop concert.

I can’t help but be me the peculiar person God created me to be.

My Jesus. he loves you just as you are. 

He always hooking me up with concerts and good views. He knows I love music!

I hope you enjoy the view God gave me.