#Songs of the Day

My spirit (and mouth) have been singing these 2 songs today and so I thought what the heck, I’d share. That is all. Enjoy and Be Blessed!

Because of Who You Are – Martha Munizzi

Seattle – Mary Mary

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> In the Middle < #Relationships

Have you ever been seemingly stuck in the middle of something? Something that probably doesn’t even have to do with you? Something which possibly affects you, but your name is not on but somebody (consciously or unconsciously) pencils you in as a volunteer? Yea, believe me, it can whomp.

Once upon a time, in elementary school, I was a conflict manager on the playground. I must have been in like 5th grade. I had a fancy vest, clipboard and all. Got a conflict? I was your gal! Resolving petty issues which seemed large at the time. When the bell rang and everyone had to freeze, who didn’t? That’s right, me! Why? cuz I was the Conflict Manager lol. So funny…I walked just because I could. While I wouldn’t call myself a conflict manager today, I would say that I definitely still possess those qualities that would make me a good one and are beneficial to my relationships.

“As iron sharpens iron, So a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.” – Proverbs 27:17

True, but never should us partaking in sharpening iron and the countenance of our friends be detrimental to ourselves and jack up our own countenance. I doubt that was God’s intention. It shouldn’t be an inappropriate exchange when our motives are right. I think He’d desire for both of our countenances to be dazzling (lol, dazzling). That’s just my thought.

The enemy is constantly trying to pervert the word of God and all ways of doing right. So many times we’re unconsciously erred in our ways for various of reasons. This is why I love the beginning of Hosea 4:6 (My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge). We hurt ourselves and each other simply because we do not know, or share for that matter. We’re not called to be hoarders.

Back in the day I had an acquaintance who’d call and vent – that’s fine, us friends need to do that sometimes (I know I do!). But in all actuality, that was the only time we’d talk, and she’d dump a load of problems (unintentionally). I’d receive it and feel like crap (unintentionally) and she’d feel great and skip on her merry little way. Do you see where I was inappropriate? The bible says, “You shall have no other gods before Me. -Exodus 20:3

He’s God, I am not. It is never our position to fulfill His role and “get in the way”. I had to learn how to give her problems to Him and show her as I showed myself that He’s the source and I can’t save the day. I begin praying for myself and asking God what he wants me to hear and say in this conversation. Asking him to prepare me before the conversation, and truly surrendering it all. If the Lord wants me to be an awesome iron, by golly I’m gonna seek Him and ask Him to show me how to be the best darn iron that I can be…and I encourage you to do the same.

Have a wonderful weekend lovers – remember our Savior!

To Pray or Not to Pray #Prayer

Warning: This post is longer than long. READ 🙂

A lot has been going on with me (internally), and if you haven’t noticed, well, I haven’t been writing about it ha. I really don’t know where to begin or if to begin for that matter, so…

This is what I’m going to talk about TODAY — today, I’m talking to Christians. Today, I’m talking to Christians who like me have been brought up in church all of their lives. Christians who rarely missed a Sunday. Christians who have consciously or unconsciously grown accustom to thinking and doing things a certain way, lawfully (religiously) and would dare not do it any other way ’cause that’s just not what you’re supposed to do, right? The Lord don’t like ugly. Now I’m not mocking, ’cause really, I’m talking to us. I’m just grateful to have come to an understanding that all of that extra has nothing to do with me and my relationship with the Lord. That a lot of those practices and ways are not mandatory or even necessary to enter the kingdom of God or get a “Well done my good and faithful servant”. That My God, who knows me better than I know myself and HAS ME, has no problem with me not doing some or any of those things — people do. We have are own preferences (some for great reason) that we sometimes impose on others.

There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God did by sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, on account of sin: He condemned sin in the flesh. -Romans 8:1-3

There is no reason for you, or me to be bound to anything. For whom the son sets free, is free indeed (John 8:36). Now don’t get all crazy, analogically speaking, I’m just saying, gon’ and wear your white after labor day lol.

Let me share this:
We are spirits with souls living in a body, right? So when prayers are prayed that align with the will of God and the Holy Spirit, everything (internally), within are spirit is smooth and in agreement. When prayers go up and others things go on that don’t align with the will of God (or the person — ’cause free will is a gift that God has given us), and are prayed selfishly to control, curses spoken, etc. things get knocked off. Everyday we’re all in spiritual warfare. In heaven, right now, there are wars going on and being fought on your behalf and when we offer up prayers that allign with the will of GOD and not our own or others, it assists those angels in waging these wars leading to victory. Or, at least minimizes the length of said wars (stay with me). Woot! Woot! Team Jesus!

The Holy Spirit dwelling inside often moves me to do or not do certain things but daggonit that condemning stronghold of a religious spirit surrounding me (us!) or just really from our own upbringing attempts to keep us bound to _______________.

“Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.” – Galations 5:1

So based on what I’ve been experiencing and feeling I ask this of you: Will you be mindful of what you pray and why you pray it? Ask, Who is it for? You or them? Is it what you want for them? Is it something they want for themselves? Better yet, ask the Lord. Let’s try not to do things we have no business doing. It doesn’t matter whether they mean well or not. THAT is why I’m ticked off. It’s controlling. When we do that concisously or unconsciously we operate under a spirit of witchcraft. I know that the last thing I wanna do. It’s hard enough striving to stay free without someone praying to keep me bound ha…help a sista out, dag. Just stay on my side. You can never go wrong with simply praying for God’s will to be done.

Ooh I got a lil example. I recently had the opportunity to pray for a friend. In that prayer it was my will to pray specifically for certain things that seemed like they should be prayed and would “fix it”, but as I was praying I felt the resistance of the Holy Spirit to do so. Our obedience and sensitivity to the Holy Spirit and how the spirit operates is crucial to our well being and way of life. I trust that the Lord has a plan and knows what He’s doing (or leading me to do) and why. Since I do trust Him, He’s probably the only one I’m ok with not questioning and feeling the need to know why. It hasn’t always been that way, He’s definitely proven himself faithful and does great at making me feel secure. Excellent track record, My God.

To Pray or Not to Pray? That is the question!
My answer would be definitely pray without ceasing (1 Thess. 5:17), and definitely pray about prayer. Annd…definitely cease praying what I’m gonna call “witchcraft prayers”.

Remember the scripture, “Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it.” – Proverbs 22:6? Well, I love it. What a wonderful guarantee. I’m in. I just hope that I can do this and do this well, and without all of the unnecessary extras, ya know? But, it starts with me…with us. So this is what I ask of you. Pray for my continuous freedom while I pray for yours. Meet ya on your knees 😉

On #Stage. # Lights # Camera #Action

Good Morning motha lovas! I woke up this morning to dig in my word for a bit and ran across this scripture passage I had highlighted a while back that reminded me of a story. I’ll share it with you today.

1 Corinthians 8:9-13

“9) Be careful, however, that the exercise of your freedom does not become a stumbling block to the weak. 10) For if anyone with a weak conscience sees you who have this knowledge eating in an idol’s temple, won’t he be emboldened to eat what has been sacrificed to idols? 11) So this weak brother, for whom Christ died, is destroyed by your knowledge. 12) When you sin against your brothers in this way and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ. 13) Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause him to fall.

It’s not about us.

Now I know that the portion about the eating of the food and idols may be a little confusing to some. But, the bible is full of tons of literal and figurative analogies from long ago that remain lively applicable.

I’ll never forget when the Lord showed me this passage. I needed it. I asked Him for understanding, and BAM…He’s faithful, and gave me just that and more.

Before I share the story, let me say that I am a woman of God and believe in ALL of His principles and teachings and try my best to live a life of worship. This does not exclude the principle of tithing. I sung in the music ministry of the church I used to go to back home on the West Coast. Being in the music ministry, we were always on stage and seen and well, an example whether we wanted to be or not. Ha…the girl who likes to work behind the scenes is on stage???… and it’s televised. Ay yi yi! lol.

Anyway, we were on stage during offering as well and an usher would come on stage and go by and collect our offering envelopes. I never had one. I got looks of all sorts sometimes…confusion, condemnation, etc. Couldn’t read them all, but people were definitely thinking something, and I didn’t care. People probably thought how the heck is she blessed and she never tithes?! The preacher talks about it’s importance and she goes up there and sings and pours faith out into the atmosphere in this beautiful ministry, but doesn’t tithe?

I am definitely a tither. I gave online. The Pastor’s wife of the Music Ministry even pulled me aside one time and explained how we’re an example and I should tithe and stuff. I thought blah blah blah, I do, and possibly more than you. I was sure that this was coming from a religious perspective. Do as we do cuz this is what we do. I didn’t care what people thought. The Lord was definitely going to have to make sense of it. And, I’m grateful I had enough sense to ask Him to do so. I was sure He was gonna tell me I was right haha. But you know what, I was wrong.

He showed me that it wasn’t about caring what people thought – ’cause in all honesty, that is still true about me, I don’t care that often. But, it was about caring about the people. It was about realizing that “Helllooo!!”, I am an example and a representation of Christ Jesus. So, If being a representation means putting a dollar or 2 in an envelope for show in addition to my online giving/tithing so that my brother or sister out there trying to possibly get on my level and grasp this blessed principle can succeed without me causing them to fall, so be it. It’s a small thing.

It’s our duty to care for one another. I loooove freedom and hate the idea or feeling of being controlled by anyTHING. I’ll be the first to admit that I’m very comfortable with myself and simply knowing for myself that all I do or say is understood by me is often enough. <– did that even make sense?! Any way, I have to constantly think outside of me. If I do or don’t do this, who will it affect? Why am I resisting this? Should I be?

As Christians, in life, we stay on stage. I’m praying for our performance and I hope you do too cuz when it all comes down to it…

It’s not about us.

#Time and #Adjustment. #Balance

The other morning I woke up and got ready for work as usual. Went and warmed up Ladybug and all. Then I remembered…I don’t work at 7 today, I switched with my co-worker! I work at 8.

I was up. Up, dressed, and ready to go! That’s on the outside. On the inside…I was touched. I was touched that the Lord was holding true to his promises and indeed drawing near to me as I had to Him. He was expressing His desire to spend some time with me, and supplying me with the time I needed leading to the choice to do so (He always gives us one). This was an opportunity that I refused to miss. This was an opportunity that I was glad to accept.

    Come close to God and He will come close to you. [Recognize that you are] sinners, get your soiled hands clean; [realize that you have been disloyal] wavering individuals with divided interests, and purify your hearts [of your spiritual adultery]. – James 4:8 (Amplified)

Sometimes we get so busy — And I must admit…Ok, prepare for venting. *sigh*…

Between work/overtime, the gym, being boo’d up, and trying to have something of a life between sleep, my days seems to end before they begin (exaggeration) & my weekends come and go like the last gummy bear in the bag that you ate but coulda sworn “Didn’t I have on 1 left??” Dag!

Lately It’s been required of me to be flexible (o_O) and I’m actually surprising myself at how well I’m rolling with it. Shoot, I like to know what’s going on, I like to know why it’s going on, and, if it will possibly be going on again without notice so that I can prepare for it…because that was not cool that I wasn’t able to prepare for that one time it went on without notice…ha, you get me.

The thing is, considering alll of that I know about myself. I’m actually sucking it up. Still low-key wanting it to end, but sucking it up nonetheless. To be honest, I don’t think it’s gonna end (maybe that’s why I’m sucking it up). I think I’m just going to adjust to this new way of life and get it down packed. I figure this — I am in preparation for something that will require these skills, and I am grateful for this training. I’m realizing that I will be walking by faith and not by sight for the rest of my life. Living moment by moment for the glory of God.

I do need a vacation tho. A relaxing getaway. I’ll get one. But right now, I know that God is answering my prayers. I’m just simply having to adjust to all that I’ve prayed for. I trust Him. So I know that He’s working things out for my good. I also have loved ones to reel me back in when everything I’ve written in this blog that communicates that I have it together goes out the window. HA..they know, I know…I don’t. I’m growing just like you. I’m grateful.

I just miss my time not being as divided and being able to cuddle with the Lord. Clearly He sees that the timing is fit for me to get creative and find ways that we can still get our cuddle on in the midst of all of the other blessings I seem to be “juggling” at the moment. Knowing that is encouraging and I’m determined to iron out the kinks. I love Him so much. Without Him, there’s no me.

So, with much help, I’m gonna give these solutions a shot:

Wake up earlier some days
Go to the Bookstore (or anywhere quiet)
Get a hotel room maybe once a month or so

We’ll see how it goes. Your suggestions are welcome as well. Meet me in your knees saints. Love you 🙂

xo,
Nu*

First #Love #Jesus

Today I’m slightly stressed. That’s probably not the right word. Maybe flustered? I dunno but it’s nothing super major. I just need to get some priorities in order, ranging from small to seemingly impossible ha. I was gonna go to the gym, but no. I got things to do today. I figure eh, since tomorrow’s not promised, if the Lord decides not to wake me up, I certainly won’t be caring about missing another day at the gym.

What I’m getting to is…the way I’m feeling today could be so much more sour (so much!) but it’s not because of Jesus. My beautiful, sweet, first love, Jesus. I just want to take the time out to encourage YOU. I don’t know what’s weighing on your shoulders, your heart, or mind but man, if you’re a child of God, know that you don’t have to carry it. If you think you’re not a child of GOD, know that you don’t have to carry it. So don’t.

    Therefore humble yourselves [demote, lower yourselves in your own estimation] under the mighty hand of God, that in due time He may exalt you, Casting the [a]whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, [b]once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you [c]watchfully. Be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind), be vigilant and cautious at all times; for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring [[d]in fierce hunger], seeking someone to seize upon and devour. – 1 Peter 5:6-8

Ha. I’m ministering to myself here.

But yes, as I was saying…If you’re reading and are a person who is struggling with your relationship with God, in turn, I’m pretty positive that life is a bit of a struggle for you as well. If you’re a person whose pain has severed your relationships with people, it doesn’t have to. You don’t have to admit it. Either way, Jesus Christ, The Lord, is your first love. Return to him. Come back. I pray that you do. He’s gracious and I promise you He’s not keeping track of all the things that you are and they are, whoever they, are. Remember that thing you repented for last week? Yea, He doesn’t. Rekindle the flames. It doesn’t matter how long you’ve been away. He’s able. Willing and able. He really just wants you back – you’re like his favorite product that seems discontinued. Show back up on the shelf and make him smile and stock up on your lovin’. He seriously cleanses and washes away all of that junk…never to return again. Never. Still boggles my mind to this day.

This song is for you…

I love you.

R&R #Rest #Relaxation

Rest and Relaxation.

Here I am, going on 4:30 a.m. blogging about R&R. Before you tell me to take my butt to bed, let me explain…
I have a cold. I’ve pretty much been asleep off and on today. My cough just woke me up (an hour early grr) to remind me that the stupid western medication that I reluctantly took 5 hours ago has worn off and my attention is needed asap. Waaah I hate this! 😦

Being off from work due to any illness of some kind is wayyy different from just “being off”. But, I will say that even though I’m sick, I’m actually enjoying this much needed r&r that as usual, I didn’t realize I needed. I’m getting the opportunity to catch up on some Real Housewives of ATL (Guilty PLeasure)..yeaaa buddy.

Tangent…

I’m cracking up right now. My friend who lives in Japan just texted me (It’s tomorrow evening there). She says she’s getting squished on the train right now and cannot move her arms, only her fingers. I just had to share how I love how she’s not letting anything get in the way of our communication. Nope. She has clearly grasped hold of this thing called friendship. Willing to lose a finger for me and all! Now that’s dedication ya’ll! Take notes. I don’t normally like to use names when blogging, but, Shoutout to Keiko! haha. She’s earned this one. *still laughing*.

Now, where were we…?? Ah yes, rest.

Like many people when I don’t rest I get either delirious (just plain goofy-er) or turn into a delicate little crabby patty (beware of unexpected tears lol). That’s rest used interchangeably with sleep. I’m not talking about that kind of rest though, I’m talking about…

    rest
    Verb:
    Cease work or movement in order to relax, refresh oneself, or recover strength.
    Remain or be left in a specified condition: “rest assured”.Noun:
    An instance or period of relaxing or ceasing to engage in strenuous or stressful activity.
    The remaining part of something.

Even the Lord rested after creating the heavens and the earth, remember? So that alone tells us it must be pretty important. I remember… one tiime… at band camp…

No, really…I remember one of my most difficult seasons (ok, maybe not MOST) I was in a “waiting zone” where I had to be still and well, wait for the Lord’s guidance in what to do next. I loved (and still do love) working with youth. At this time I was working with 7th graders as an Instructional Aide at a charter school in a low-income area. The principal of the school wanted me to go back to school and get my teaching credential so that he could hire me as a teacher for the following school year. It made sense, but the The Lord made it clear to me that was not something that He wanted me to do. The school was going through a lot and in the process of possibly getting shut down by the district for tons of both relevant and irrelevant political issues I’m not even gonna get into. Politics suck, ugh.

I couldn’t attend the last board meeting, which always fell on a Tuesday, I had to pack for my new life.

I’m in the airport and I get a phone call from my wing-woman (the teacher I worked with) informing me that it’s over. The school, my school, their school was being shut down and was no longer going to have the honor of impacting the lives of those little people. I wasn’t gonna hear “Good Morning, Ms. Grayson” or “Wassup , Ms. G!”. I was no longer going to be handed random bouquets of ivy leaves or attacked by hugs with little germy booger picking fingers (ok maybe I won’t miss the fingers haha). I was gonna miss a lot, but I was ready for this, whatever this was, and I knew I was in God’s will.

Mind you, this is August. School let out in June. The entire Summer I had no idea what was next. People would ask me questions that I too wanted to be answered. All I could say was I don’t know. That answer just led to more annoying questions. Even those that love you can sometimes make you feel pressured to be or do something when really it’s just your season of R&R. I graciously had my hustles. The school asked me to come in and work the office for a bit which fit in with a little bit of modeling, that fit in with a little bit of house/dog sitting. God had my back for sure and I never missed a pay check.

I’ll never forget watching Karate Kid and Jackie Chan’s character, “Mr. Han” sharing this Chinese proverb with Jayden Smith’s character that:

    “There is a great difference in being still and doing nothing.”

Aha! That was it! All this time I’d been feeling the need to do something when I was supposed to be being still, resting, and waiting on the Lord. Do something so I could have an answer to everyone’s questions including my own. Doing something just so that I wouldn’t be doing nothing! When you’re a person who is always doing something, and functions best with a full plate, trust, “being still” is a job in itself.

When you are still you position yourself to hear from the Lord. You’re saying my attention is yours, what’s up? You’re not really multitasking. Some of us have been waiting for answers to prayers or questions we’ve asked God but we won’t simply be still long enough to hear what He has to say. Trust, I know its hard, but make a reservation for your Savior – He’ll keep it and you’ll be glad you did. There’s nothing like being in His presence.

So get some R&R saints, and spend time with your Jesus. I’ll do the same. Be still. Wait. Trust, and know that He is God. You may not be working, but if you let Him, He will – and moreover, He wants to! Let Him.

    …those who trust in the Lord will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint. – Isaiah 40:31

Don’t jip yourself of a blessing. Rise to another level and come soar up here with us eagles 😉