Posted in Accountability, Achievement, Change, Confidence, Determination, Free Will, freedom, History, judgment, Life, Opinions, Perseverance, Progress, Self, slave, Truth, Willpower

Life was meant to be led

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So God gave us all one life and that was for the purpose of us growing and developing into a state where we would function in our right minds, and make decisions for our well being.

There are so many things in this world to get us off this task. This world is all about influence and control. We fight each day to keep our righteous minds.

Look at your life and the forces around you. Your home life, your job, your friends, the products you buy, the services that you use, everywhere you turn someone is trying to get you to do something. Buy this thing, support that cause, help him out — there is no end.

From the time you wake up and even in your sleep, life is getting away from you. The status quo says eat, drink, buy, spend, take, push, struggle, force, aggression, die trying and too late. These words belong to the world and they are used far too often.

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So you my friend must take control. We don’t often consider it but for many the word sale means you need to buy. Did you need the item? It doesn’t matter because it’s on sale.

For some, hearing the words happy hour means it’s time to drink. Why, are you thirsty? No, it’s happy hour.

Look at the control these simple words have on us. Our words have the same effect as controlled substances — and we are hooked.

So how is this fixed? We must take control of our own lives. Life was meant to be led. You have to get out in front of yours and lead it. Guide it. Control it. Treat it as precious as it is. Critical thinking is paramount to your success.

In the words of the late great rapper Heavy D, “In this life I strive for improvement. Be your own guide, follow your own movement.”

Make no mistake: this isn’t about surviving, it’s all about flourishing.

Posted in Accountability, Beauty, Children, Confidence, Determination, Generosity, Happiness, helping, Honor, Love, The Family

Tribute to my mom

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One of my favorite songs we sang growing up in church was Home of the Soul. I never really understood this song beyond the melody which I liked.

But as I got older I started listening to the words and discovered this is a song describing the place that Jesus is preparing for us. I eventually matured to be able to put scriptural application with this song and in addition to seeing the place Jesus is preparing for me in the future, I saw another place. This place was prepared for my living in the past.

My mother, Annie Mayberry, is like no other. Pound for pound she’s the best mom you could have. (I know I’m bias but bare with me)

Looking back at what we had back in the day, I realize how hard it was to make that happen. We were not rich, but we lived in an extremely clean home that was comfortable and had nice stuff.

I looked forward to coming home from a hard day at school, hard time at basketball practice, frustrating day with friends and the reason I loved coming home was because it was prepared for me.

My mom in anticipation of us coming home made sure things were right. There was always more than enough food. All of my needs (and some wants) were taken care of and she did this despite how she felt on any given day.

My mom never wanted anyone to look down on us. She never wanted anyone to think we were not cared for and she never wanted us to feel cheated in life. She gave us a respect for the arts — from paintings to great music — she kept beautiful things around us.

She took our senses and used them to her advantage. We were surrounded by beauty, grew up on incredibly delicious soul food, clean clothes, warm bed and toys — what else could a child want.

But the greatest thing my mom gave me and my siblings was her love. Her love truly covered a multitude of sins — ours and hers. There was no doubt that she was in our corner and would not hesitate to whip our a$$ or kick somebody else’s a$$ in a New York minute.

So today I give honor to my first love. A woman who I admire and appreciate greatly! Thanks for everything Annie! Love you much!

Posted in Accountability, Achievement, Bigotry, Change, Children, Confidence, Determination, Discipleship, Faith, Forgiveness, freedom, Giving, God, Happiness, helping, Honor, Jesus Christ, Justice, kindness, Life, Love, Perseverance, Prayer, Progress, Relationships, Resurrection, Sharing, society, Taking Responsibility, The Family, Time, Trust, Worship

Some day at Christmas

Some day at Christmas we won’t be farmerry-christmas

from making friends no matter what color they are.

We will be color blind and our hearts will see

that God made you and me.

 

Some day at Christmas we won’t be rude

and pass out to everyone who has a need for food.

We will not covet all the things that we see

because we live for him who died on that tree.

 

3142505786_793baeb9a7Some day at Christmas all wars will cease.

Our heart’s desire will be to seek peace.

We’ll take responsibility for all that we do

and make this world better for me and you.

 

Some day at Christmas the deed will be done.

Our lives will be judged by God’s only son.

We lived our lives for Christ and stood in his Grace

and spread love thoughout the human race.

Posted in Accountability, Achievement, Beauty, Children, Determination, Discipleship, Faith, Generosity, Giving, God, Happiness, Health, Jesus Christ, Love, Parenthood, Perseverance, Racism, Relationships, Sharing, Success, Taking Responsibility, The Family, Truth, Willpower, Work

I’m thankful for…

This week we celebrate Thanksgiving.

This has always been a sore spot for me ever since my second year of high school. That’s the time that I learned about the betrayal and almost destruction of an entire race of people at the hands of the Pilgrims.

Since that time, I’ve learn to find good in a day marked to celebrate their evil. Thanksgiving is somewhat like the Trojan horse. Both involved a festive occasion marred by betrayal and a massacre.

But there is hope.

Instead of thinking about the historic events that make this holiday ugly, I choose to be thankful.

I am thankful that I knew to make the most of my opportunities.

I’m thankful that I didn’t have circumstances like abuse, grief, drugs or poverty to hinder me from seeing the potential in myself.

I’m thankful for all the people who are close to me. I’m thankful for their love and understanding. I’m thankful for their friendship and kindness. And mostly I’m thankful that these people formed a hedge around me to ensure that I  knew I was loved and shielded from hurt.

I’m thankful for my parents. I am what I am because of the parents I have. And even though they were not perfect, they turned me into the best me I could be.

I’m thankful for my race. Despite the tragedy and racism that still takes place, I am proud of the contributions of my race, the rich tradition of the African culture and our resilience. I still pray that more African Americans will come to know this truth. #cutitoutFerguson

I am thankful to everyone who has ever disciplined me. I needed it and I realize how evil it is for others to go around not disciplining those in their scope of influence. Every child needs discipline and one of the problems in our school systems is that they lack discipline.

I’m thankful to every man that has been or who is currently in my life. You have taught me about a very diverse brotherhood that I am thankful for. The closeness, intimacy and trust we share has made me the strong heterosexual man I am today. I am blessed to be able to draw from brothers who are White, Indian, Cuban, German and Black.

I’m especially thankful for every woman who has ever built a relationship with me. You taught me love and respect the right way and made me less of a dog. I learned how to be intimate without having sex and I learned to appreciate beauty.

I am very thankful for the three children I have. They are all little models of me. I’m learning so much from them. They make me a better man.

I’ve saved the best for last. I am most thankful for my relationship with Jesus Christ. All of who I am and who I hope to be rests in Him. Christ, you represent all for me and I love you with every inch of who I am.

Please take time to share your thanks with the people who have earned it!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Posted in Achievement, Beauty, Change, Confidence, Determination, Faith, freedom, Happiness, Life, Progress

Renewed strength

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Recently I was watching footage of eagles in motion. I was attracted to the effortless motion of the eagle in flight. An incredibly powerful creature with very keen eyesight and powerful claws — clearly there is majesty with this bird.

I was then reminded of the words which appear in the bible from the prophet Isaiah which says, “But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” There is much metaphorical language here that once understood will empower us.

To wait on the Lord says you will trust him. It’s a little thing, but we all have people in our lives that we would not trust enough to wait on them. These people may be nice folks, but I know I have some relatives that I would not ask to pick me up from the airport unless I had a lot of extra time. Some people are very challenged with these situations. Hopefully you feel our God is worth the wait. What he can do for you, makes him worth the wait.

Here, our text says he will “renew their strength.” This means that he will not replenish the strength they had, but give them a strength they never had before. The strength in this text allows you to run and not grow weary and walk and not get tired.

The symbolism displayed in mounting up with wings of an eagle is a poetic way of saying you would have the same confidence and power shown by the eagle when he is about to take flight. It’s like playing a high stakes card game with your enemies and you know you have the best hand. There is an overwhelming confidence in knowing. This is the very thing that God is bringing to you. But this knowledge sustains you forever. You never doubt, you never grow weary and you never have a bad day.

Running is just symbolism for doing. To run and not grow weary is to operate in God’s purpose and be blessed in it. Walking is just symbolism for lifestyle. To walk and not faint is to live without stumbling. Both of these rely on your commitment to the one who judges justly. It all rests in the knowing.

So what is the knowing? This is where you learn that the dealer in the card game of life is God. It’s when you realize that every trap Satan sets for you has been sponsored by God — meaning that he set the limits of the trial and the duration to bring you to his will, not Satan’s will. And that he has freed you from sin so you don’t have to dwell in it any longer.

The question is do you really want to fly like that? Do you need the confidence that your source of power is greater than any power you will face? Do you want an eternal source that makes growing weary and getting tired a thing of the past? You then must trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding.

Posted in Accountability, Achievement, Change, Confidence, Determination, Discipleship, Faith, helping, Justice, Life, Love, Perseverance, Progress, Sharing, society, Success, Taking Responsibility, The Family, Time, Truth

The power of one

untitledIt is easy to look at this world and all of the evil there in and feel that as one person we are powerless. It seems like my voice and vote doesn’t matter and my single voice is too small.

Well, this ideal is family to the fear and doubt that is given by the evil one. This concept has halted a lot of would be powerful movements. A wild forest fire can be started with one match and whole wars have been started with one shot.

What if the energy that was donated to the negative thoughts were reserved for the one? The one who would dare to speak out against injustice or the one who would dare to love their spouse in spite of infidelity.

Or the one who would dare to challenge a bully or plead for the less fortunate. Or the one who would choose to see that the glass really is half full or understand that the best dancing is done in the rain.

Jesus made a huge impact living only 33 mortal years on earth. God has given most of us more time and the same power!

Let’s celebrate the power of one and do something with it.

Posted in Accountability, Achievement, Change, Confidence, Determination, Happiness, Life, Mind Power, Perseverance, Progress, society, Success, Taking Responsibility, Truth

Thank God! Spring is here!

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Spring symbolizes a new beginning. The death of winter is gone and all things are made new. Spring is like a second chance.

Have you ever been in an unhealthy relationship? Or worked a dead-end job that stressed you out whenever you thought about the drive to it? Or how about a bad circumstance that needs to end? The advent of spring should be the start of a new beginning for you.

New beginnings are symbolized in scripture by the number eight. It means the next in a new series or a new beginning. For example, when Noah was told to build the ark and warn the wicked world that God was angry, he preached about the next chapter or new beginning the world would take. You see, God was getting ready to start over and Noah and everyone who listened to him would be part of that new series.

It is no wonder then in 1 Peter 3:20 that it says of Noah’s time that “8 souls were saved by water”. And in 2 Pet. 2:5, Noah is referred to as a preacher of righteousness and called the “eighth person”. I would’ve  thought with Noah being the head of his household, he would be number 1. This text calls him the eighth person for a reason: He represents the new beginning. He was the next in a new series.

There are many others in scripture that could be pointed out, but the point is to show the healing power of Spring. This is your new beginning. What are you going to do with it? The rest of your year will be dictated by what you do now, today, during the spring season.

It’s time to stop planning and making excuses. Now is the time for action! Don’t let everything around you change and become beautiful and you stay the same.

You deserve a new beginning. God knew that and allowed you to live and see the Spring. Make the most of it! This is your season!