I want to leave this world empty. #legacy

Let it be known
That I gave it all I’ve got
And that I kept on walking
Long after I got shot.

They tried to kill me
But He healed me
And now I can surely say
There’s no doubt in my mind
That God isn’t The Way.

He’s not a man that He should lie
So there’s no good excuse
Not to serve Him ’til we die
Not put our gifts to use.

I want to leave this world empty
On time and On “E”
I want to leave this world empty
And full of all of me.

He paid a pretty hefty cost
For our sinful, wretched mess
Then He rose; sent Help
And proceeded to call us blessed.

I thought I lost some here and there
But He said, “Nah, they quit the race.”
He said I chose to keep on running
And they chose to save face.

I want to leave this world empty
Having done all I loved to do
Love God, Love People
Love Me, Love You.

I want to leave flecks of gold
That shimmer within smiles
I want to leave hope, lots of hope
That lasts a great while.

I decided long ago that…
I wanted to leave this world empty
On time and on “E”
So that all would know, truly
That I was naturally me.

So when that day comes…
Let it be known
I didn’t leave early
Let it be known
I hate being late
Let it be known
I’ve waited long enough
For that Oh, so precious date.

© 2016 • Chan’tel Nikole Grayson

 

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Can’t We All Just Get Along?! #Harmony #Unity

As I browse through the timelines and hashtags of social media, I see so many saints distracted. I see celebrity headlines and discussions highlighting Kirk Franklin, Kanye West, Kylie Jenner, Meagan Good, Donald Trump, etcetera, etcetera, etcetera! *gag*. When will it end?! It’s always someone, and if we’re not careful when engaging, it certainly has the potential to destroy our fruit.

weapons of mass destructionLook here: All of these people need Jesus, just like you and I. Where’s the remnant that is praying for them instead of reading and talking about them? We don’t need to indulge past the headlines to do that. Forget pop culture. Where is Jesus culture? Must we mix?!

 

Therefore, “Come out from them and be separate, says the Lord. Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.” – 2 Corinthians 6:17 (NLT)

Let’s be honest, some of us are just feeding our flesh with these discussions. We gave up “Scandal”, but we’re still “Keeping Up With The Kardashians” (no shade, I used to keep up with them too! lol). This type of chatter just fuels our sinful nature and employs gossip and drama as horrible department managers within our temple. We live in an era where fasts from social media are at times legitimately necessary, and sometimes harder than fasts from food! Believe me, I know. Been there, done that, do that!

 

blah blah blahI see Christians debating over justifiable topics too like what day the Sabbath is, or whether or not Christmas and Easter are pagan and should be celebrated; *sighs* my spirit is grieved. Meaningless! Meaningless! Meaningless! Here’s a suggestion: Keep every day holy. When we feud with one another we don’t represent our new spiritual identities in Christ. No! We shine light on our carnality, and remind the rest of the world why He was crucified.

Now, I’m not saying shut up and don’t ask anything. Questions are the devil, chile! Noooo. But, I do recommend that we check our heart motives for asking, stop relying so heart-check.jpgheavily on people for the correct answer, and we stop judging one another based on what we believe is the wrong answer. It’s meaningless!

This reminds me of the historical bickering in Paul’s day regarding the circumcision of Gentiles. Remember? This is what he had to say about that:

So Christ has truly set us free. Now make sure that you stay free, and don’t get tied up again in slavery to the law. Listen! I, Paul, tell you this:
If you are counting on circumcision to make you right with God, then Christ will be of no benefit to you. I’ll say it again. If you are trying to find favor with God by being circumcised, you must obey every regulation in the whole law of Moses. For if you are trying to make yourselves right with God by keeping the law, you have been cut off from Christ! You have fallen away from God’s grace. – Galatians 5:1-4 (NLT)

Let’s forget about the legal nonsense and keep God’s grace in the race! Our reasons for wanting an answer should be purely for the edification of the church. In all honesty, some answers will likely vary from person to person, or season to season. I’m ever discovering that God is much more out of the box than I think. If you’re hollering that Jesus is the reason for the Christmas season, yet you don’t feel like it’s Christmas unless you have a tree, that’s a heart matter to address. Do you see what I mean, here? It’s much deeper, and what may be sin or inappropriate for me, may not be sin or inappropriate for you.  The heart of the matter and the preservation and growth of our relationship with Christ should be priority.

For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him. – Philippians 2:13 (NLT)

So, How about we put an end to all of this dissension and choose to agree to let God reveal His truth to us and make us right? There is power in that agreement. We don’t have all of the answers. We are but little children seeking an Almighty Father for keys to His Kingdom.

 Let us remain focused on this simple sum of instructions given by our Savior:

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. – Matthew 22:37-39 (ESV)

i'm for truthA person who loves God keeps His commandments (See John 14:15), and a person who is filled with The Holy Spirit, and heeds the convictions of the Spirit, wants to be right for the right reasons. They don’t want to argue. They just want the truth to win, and one who loves God will rejoice when it does! ( See 1 Corinthians 13:6)

When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. – John 16:13 (ESV)

Some things we don’t need to know, but the things that we should, I pray that the Lord would reveal them to us, so that we won’t suffer ignorantly due to lack of knowledge (See Hosea 4:6). If you happen to be that person in the body of Christ that The Holy Spirit reveals it to for us all, please do share it in love. In the meantime, the only question I have is…Can’t We All Just Get Along?!

Hate & Blessings: A Reminder to The Body of Christ #Beatitudes

As representatives of Christ, any and everyone should clearly recognize who we are and Who we represent by the fruit that we produce. As of late, I feel such a burden to encourage the body of Christ to increase their level of integrity.  So, I’m blasting my imaginary megaphone and shouting loud and clear…”COME OUT FROM AMONG THEM AND BE YE SEPARATE!” (See 2 Corinthians 6:17).

stay holyAre you telling a little white lie?
Not letting the cashier know he/she overcharged you?
Ordering water, but filling your cup up with soda?
California rollin’ through the stop sign?
Illegitimately parking in handicap for just a few minutes?
Leaving tags on purchased clothing, wearing them, and returning them?

CUT THAT OUT!

These are just a few examples of spirit-grieving acts that lack integrity. These may seem small, but as long as you’re dishonest in little, you will be dishonest with much (See Luke 16:10).  If you relate, I encourage you to repent and ask the Holy Spirit to help you cut this out.  Ask God to purge you and for His Spirit to fill you.  We already know that sin pays in death, so don’t take the job!  Our brother, Paul, has clearly felt our pain in this area.  He said…

14-16 I can anticipate the response that is coming: “I know that all God’s commands are
spiritual, but I’m not. Isn’t this also your experience?” Yes. I’m full of myself—after all, I’ve spent a long time in sin’s prison. What I don’t understand about myself is that I decide one way, but then I act another, doing things I absolutely despise. So if I can’t be trusted to figure out what is best for myself and then do it, it becomes obvious that God’s command is necessary.

17-20 But I need something more! For if I know the law but still can’t keep it, and if the power of sin within me keeps sabotaging my best intentions, I obviously need help! I realize that I don’t have what it takes. I can will it, but I can’t doit. I decide to do good, but I don’t really do it; I decide not to do bad, but then I do it anyway. My decisions, such as they are, don’t result in actions. Something has gone wrong deep within me and gets the better of me every time.

help

21-23 It happens so regularly that it’s predictable. The moment I decide to do good, sin is there to trip me up. I truly delight in God’s commands, but it’s pretty obvious that not all of me joins in that delight. Parts of me covertly rebel, and just when I least expect it, they take charge.

24 I’ve tried everything and nothing helps. I’m at the end of my rope. Is there no one who can do anything for me? Isn’t that the real question?
– Romans 7:14-24

You better believe that the world is watching, and more importantly, our Heavenly Father is watching.  As long as we’re bound, we’re incapacitated; unable to properly strengthen the body and help them get free from their sins that once enslaved us.

Dear friends, if we deliberately continue sinning after we have received knowledge of the truth, there is no longer any sacrifice that will cover these sins. – Hebrews 10:26 (NLT)

Allow me to remind you of what the Lord hates…

Proverbs6-16-19

Now let me remind you of the true definition of blessed…

beatitudes

There’s a huge misconception in the world, and even in the body of Christ of what it means to be BLESSED.  Do not be deceived! Following Christ is not your ticket to wealth, prosperity and instant gratification.  If that’s what you’re after, you ought to follow Satan (or maybe you are unknowingly).  He’ll give it to you now, as a down payment for hell later. Following Christ is your ticket to Heaven. We endure now, and prosper in eternity later.

Now don’t get me wrong, the Lord does give material gifts, but from my personal experience, they start flowing once they don’t matter (ha!).  The world oohs, ahhs and huffs and puffs in jealousy when they see your gifts, while all along in your heart, you’re like “pssh…this?”.  God loves giving to these kind; they’re not discontent and adulterous lusting for more.

Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ.
– Philippians 3:18 (NLT)

Half-Baked #Growth #Maturity #Relationships

I’m always talking about how our relationships can be better. How the Lord desires to prosper them and how we should desire the same as He. But, you know what?

To whom much is given, much is required. (Luke 12:48)… and to be quite honest, too many people walk around wanting much and not wanting to give what’s frickin’ required let alone anything. They want to have the cake and eat it too. They want all the good and it maybe it shouldn’t annoy me, but I love them and it does. I want better for people just like I want better for me. They glide through life with an air or sense of entitlement about them. When in all actuality, this life has never been solely about us. We wouldn’t need anyone if that was so. They appear to be fully baked but their gooey in the middle simply ’cause their butts didn’t wanna stay in the oven as long as the other cookies. It makes me wanna climb at the top of the mountain and yell “Just stay in the frickin oven, dag!”. But one thing is for sure is that you can’t make anyone be passionate about something that you are. Your passion is your passion. My passion is growth…overcoming…being better. I try not to get upset, but dag, I know the benefit of it and I want people to have that. I want people to want that, so they can strive for that, and have that. That’s what I want. I want us to celebrate our victories together. Yay!! I want to save the world, maybe even from themselves.

Now, I know people get by and we have free will and sometimes make whack choices. We develop friendships and romantic relationships with people who truthfully we don’t deserve or don’t deserve us. It is what it is. For whatever reason, God allows it and really His grace is just so darn sufficient that we get a lot of breaks. Do something with them though! Seriously, I feel like crying right now because there’s so many of you out there who have blessings in store for you that you will never obtain because of your unwillingness to truly submit unto God like you’ve never have before. To truly lay down what you want for what He wants. To truly say okay, you’re the boss, I’ll be still…let’s get uncomfortable and let’s face it.

“If you want a butterfly you’ve got to be a butterfly” – India.Arie

Now I’m not perfect, but I don’t consider myself half-baked. However, if you’ve consulted with God and He considers me half-baked, He’s right lol. One thing that I can attest is that I am determined to be fully baked and so I am in Jesus’ name. Being better than yesterday is not an option. Since I’m not a fan of a half-baked me, I certainly don’t want to be in any kind of half-baked relationships…at least not forever. They can only have potential for so long before you realize it ain’t happenin’!

I’m in tears. Bittersweet tears. I’ve always heard and received that “it takes two”, but recently I’ve reached the sad realization of that statement. It doesn’t matter how hard we try or how long we bake, the success of any type of relationship is an unrealistic expectation when the focus is only on the growth of one individual. Success is much, and to whom much is given, much is required. You’ve heard it before…actions speak louder than words. We can’t do it alone. It will forever take two and I am only one.

So however your relationships are — surfaced, deep and lasting, decide where you want it to go…accept the truth regarding where it is and where it’s heading, and do what you gotta do.

My pastor back home said something like…the things our spirit wants to do in that lead to breakthrough will never agree with our flesh. That’s the type of season we’re in guys. Make wise choices. I’m praying for you.

So even after allllll of that gumbo, I say…we shall still remain hopeful in all things because God is a miracle worker and an exception to the “It takes two” statement. He can do what He wants, and sometimes even the slightest of decisions that we make can change our destiny.  Be hopeful. Accept the truth. Keep growing. Move forward and realize that sometimes, sometimes people are just in our lives for seasons. Or, sometimes they’re just half-baked and are never gonna stay in that daggon oven!

It Is Well.

Good morning loves!

This is the day the Lord has made;
We will rejoice and be glad in it. – Psalm 118:24

So lately I’ve been reflecting (surprise, surprise, surprise! – in my Gomer Pyle voice) and really just thankful and well, happy. I can honestly say that I am the happiest that I have ever been. It is a miracle, really. If you only knew! I was talking about this with my best friend the other day and we are just totally amazed. She was sharing how she threw away a picture of me from a while back because it wasn’t a good memory. When the photo was taken I was in a bad place. Not at my worst quite yet, but in a bad season in my life. As we were talking, I could visualize God smiling at His children boasting about His greatness. I praise God that “It is well” and I now have pictures that show that.

      Hallelujah! I worship you, Oh God for all you do! You are magnificent in all of Your ways. You’re an awesome wonder and in You forever will I put my trust for You are a faithful and just God…Hallelujah! If You choose to do no more You honestly and truly have done enough. You are a healer and deliverer. I thank You for making me whole…I thank You for making me new, I thank You for seeing about me and not forgetting Lord *tears*…

Thank You so much for not forgetting about me.

I hit a rough patch where I had a little internal tug of war (and I’m not done hitting them ha) that is difficult for me to explain, but I came out victorious thanks to prayer (if you prayed, thank you!). I had some decisions I needed to make, I had to stop pouting, lay my will down (which I thought I had), and choose to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit and trust that God knows what He’s doing and that even when some things don’t make sense, they do to Him. A lot of great things are going on and in the works for my life now…that quickly. When we choose His way, we open up the door to blessing. Blessing always follows obedience. While I’m happy about the opportunities, people, and wonderful things going on that make me smile, I do not attribute this joy to anyone except The One who is worthy…My God the Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit. But I do thank you all who have allowed yourselves to be used to bless my life in all sorts of way that you may be unaware of. I feel, pure, raw, unadulterated love and joy that only cometh from the Lord. I’m grateful that the Lord is patient, loving, and not a respecter of persons because I certainly fall short and require much grace at times.

I encourage you today. I encourage me today. Whatever you’re going through, big or small…do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble. – Matthew 6:34 May the Lord help us with today. Today is still the day that the Lord has made and when you choose to rejoice in it despite whatever is going on in heart, mind, and in the natural. Despite however people are acting around you…you excel in strength. You wage spiritual war even when you feel defeated. You win.

Be Encouraged. Have a blessed day!

gowiththe…FLOW #HolySpirit

This week I have been making minor plans to do things…workout, wash my hair, cook, go to bed by…etc. and they have just not been happening. They’ve been interrupted, postponed, moved around, and well, that’s fine, and I’ve actually enjoyed the alternative. One thing I will be doing tomorrow tho is skyping with thedivinehostess! (check out her blog and try not to drool) *woot woot!*

But yes, I guess it’s like writing in the sand on the beach and having the tide gently wash some or all of your script away. There’s always a chance it can come out further than expected and you can’t really gauge it based on the past times. No sense in getting upset, it’s the ocean geesh…that’s what it does! After all, you’re in it’s territory and there’s plenty of room to write it again.

flow/flō/

Verb:
Move along or out steadily and continuously in a current or stream.

Noun:
The action or fact of moving along in a steady, continuous stream.

Going with the flow. Makes life much easier. Do it.

It really is like one of the best things you can do (along with a gajillion of other things, right?). And from a planner’s perspective: God’s will, God’s bill. It’s like, really Lord? Now? This is what you want me to do…right now? Alright. But then I trust that He’s gonna work a miracle out of that to-do list ha. That He has my best interest in mind and knows what He’s doing and why. When The God Head 3-n-1 (The Father, The Son, & The Holy Spirit) are in control (like fa real, fa real), and you’re going with “the flow”, then you don’t have to worry about the consequences of the “interruption”. It won’t distract you if God has purpose in it. In all honesty, refusing to roll with it at times can be considered an interruption in itself — that’s a distraction from His purpose for you at that particular time. For example…it’s past midnight and my butt is usually knocked out and on dream #2 that I won’t remember in the morning.

We gotta remember that once we give our lives to Christ, we.have.given.our.lives.to.Christ. We said I’m yours, you’re mine. We said my way doesn’t work, so I’ma go ahead and let you take it from here. No takebacks.

Father, help us go with the flow so that we may experience life that way you intended. Amen.