Tag Archives: Men

Got Love?

So here is a little food for thought. It may be heavy and kind of “in your face” but I am done with superficial Christians living their superficial lives and presenting to the world that this is what Christianity is all about.

Christianity is not about performing “good deeds” and then being done with the person that the deed was done for, it is not about telling people that you are going to pray for them yet not having a praying bone in your body, it is not about wearing a certain type of clothing or not wearing make-up, it is not about being one person to the world while you are a different person behind closed doors. It is about being transparent, it is about serving others and continuing to build relationship with them, it is about displaying the character of God in the good times and the bad.

How can you display His character if you don’t know Him? How can you know Him if you don’t spend time with Him? This is why relationship is so important. Relationship requires us to be selfless, to forgive and to put others’ needs before our own. This world has gotten it so twisted and we don’t understand or hold relationships sacred anymore.

Religion has been intertwined with the Word, lies have been mixed with Truth, for a very long time and it’s about time we started to acknowledge it, address it and change it. If you are a born-again believer you need to begin seeking the Lord for understanding, as it pertains to His Word, because true understanding can only come from Him.

How can we love if we walk in pride?Some of us have been walking in pride for so long that we do not even realize we are in it. That’s scary but it’s the truth and I know because I was once the most prideful person anyone could have ever met but thank God for deliverance!

Pride and love cannot and will never mix; they cannot exist together. You cannot unconditionally love anyone if you walk in pride because pride forces us to love conditionally. God’s love is not conditional. Jesus did not die for us to love others conditionally! His love is so unconditional that we cannot wrap our carnal minds around it, which is why He tells us that our minds must be renewed. This truth may go over certain ones’ heads however, some things can only be received by the Spirit, the Holy Spirit that is. This is a continual process, not a one-time deal.

Don’t take my word for it, read the Word and seek the Lord in everything that you hear, see and do.

There is always something to learn, something to receive and something new that God wants to reveal to us through His Word. It is only when we do what it says in Matthew 6:33 and “seek first the Kingdom” and seek the wisdom, understanding righteousness of God, that our minds can be renewed, we can be delivered from bondage and we can walk in liberty and unconditional love toward all. Peace and love, family!

Delayed or Unanswered?

I met a young man while shopping.  He and I began talking and he happened to say something that would later send me on this journey of intense study and prayer.  He had recently gone through a very hurtful breakup with the mother of their infant daughter and said that he thought she was “the one” and now he was in a place of questioning and doubting God since he felt like God didn’t answer his prayers to be with this woman forever.  I’m sure many of us can relate to this type of doubt and unanswered-prayeruncertainty, in our own lives, in some way.  However, I could sense that this was much more than your typical doubt, if you will.

In the short time that we spoke, which was about half an hour, I learned more about this young man than I learned about many of my friends during our first few months of friendship.  I also believe that this young man walked away with a newfound faith and a certainty that he had longed for, for a lifetime.  To God be the glory!  You see, I am not the kind of person that believes in sugarcoating this thing called faith; I am not going to paint out a life spent with Jesus to be a life free from pain, struggle, tears or hurt.  However, as long as there is breath in these lungs I will forever let you know that in the midst of the pain and the tears, there will always be an indescribable peace and an unspeakable joy that can only come from Jesus.

Back to our topic, delayed or unanswered?…  When I was growing up, my grandmother, who was a mighty woman of faith, used to say, “Baby girl, there will always be times when God seems distant but that’s when you have to stand a little firmer, pray a little harder and trust a little longer.”  I’m not going to even lie and say that I understood what she meant by that but as I’ve grown up, had a family of my own, and continued my own walk with the Lord, I have begun to understand many of her words a little bit better.  349_1920x1080_angel_vs_demon

You see, we all have times when we want to give up or we feel stagnated in some part of our lives.  I’m sure many, if not all, of us have had times when we have prayed to some ‘higher being’ and things just didn’t pan out the way we thought they would.  It is very easy to stop believing, to stop trusting, and to give up on faith during those times but that is the trick of the enemy.  The enemy wants you to believe that there is no God or that God is not listening to you but that is a lie from the pit of hell!  The truth is that God does listen, God does care and God is real!

There are times when we, as parents, avoid giving our own children things that will harm them or take them off of the path that they are supposed to be traveling on.  If we, as parents, think about our children in this way and want to prevent them from ever being hurt in any way, what do you believe the God of all creation thinks about concerning us and our well-being?

DISCLAIMER: I take full responsibility, retaliation and backlash for the following statement: I honestly believe that there is no such thing as an unanswered prayer; there is either yes or no.

Man-Praying-at-DawnMany times, it is not that God has not answered our prayers.  Many times, God has either answered the  prayer with a “No” and that is why it feels like He did not answer us because He has answered in a way that we were not really expecting or open to.  And, sometimes, His answer is “Yes” and everything works out the way we thought it should or even better.  What we have to remember is that everything will be answered in the end so, whether or not we understand God’s Will, we can rest assured that we will fully understand everything (the good, the bad and the ugly) that happened, in this life, when we get to eternity.

My goal, in every post that I write, is to make you think, not to change your mind or belief, just to give you something to chew on.  If you happen to get something more out of the thoughts written into this blog that is wonderful but the goal is to really just present a new perspective about very real issues, subjects or questions that we all may have thought about at one point or another.

College: Is it really necessary?

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Some friends and I were talking a few days ago and we happened to get on the topic of college. That conversation was probably one of my favorites since I love talking about and understanding the impact that our choices have on our lives and on society as a whole.

So, one of my friends said that he and his wife feel that having a college education is very much needed to get to where you want to be in this life. A few of my friends were torn in what they truly believed or had no real opinion about it one way or another. The majority of my friends felt like most of their parents expected them to go to college and obtain a degree and, as such, they knew they would require this of their own offspring as well. I was joined by only one other friend who felt that while a college degree is great to pursue it is not absolutely necessary for lifelong success.

I’m of the belief that when the Lord has called you to a particular thing He will open the doors – that you will need opened – to get you to where He’s called you to go. God can, will and has already given you certain gifts that will help you on your journey of life. One of my dearest friends, who barely finished high school and is one of the smartest people I know, has a very evident gift of knowledge. A gift of knowledge, for those who don’t know, is having a mind that is able to figure out, quickly learn or just plain know things that most people only know if they’re “formally” taught those things. This is the way that the gift has manifested itself in my friend however, I am sure it can manifest itself in other ways as God wills. All in all, this IS a real gift that can make a person look – and sound – college educated without actually being so.

I understand that it is the goal of colleges and recruiters to enroll as many students as possible. That is their mission and their job and I’m not mad at them for taking their jobs seriously and holding their position in high regards. I’m appreciative to these institutions for being here for the many people who can, will, have been called and do desire to attend college. What frustrates me is that we, as parents, are not truly in prayer for our children and for our children’s futures. What grieves my heart is that we are not consulting God – in everything that we do – in how we are raising, what we are speaking and how we are guiding our children. Since my belief is that not everyone is supposed to go to college, it makes no sense for those individuals to go and put themselves in the position to incur student loans and other debts for an education that they will either never fully use or walk down a path that they’ve not been called to in the first place.

No wonder why so many college students change their majors on average 3 times before settling on one. We are sending our children into the world and expecting them, at 18 years old, to have a well thought out, surefire plan so that we can feel good about sending them out to begin and fulfill that plan. We are not setting our children up for success but rather for failure. If we will be real, we can all see how this is sending a message to our kids that conformity is better than being distinct. This message says, “Don’t have your own dreams, goals or vision, just do what everyone else is doing and be what everyone else is being and everything will be fine. Oh yeah, and God doesn’t need to know about this but you can bring Him along for the ride!” Are we serious?!?

I said all of this to say that it is up to us to understand how we are gifted, know what we have been called to do and to be obedient and walk in that calling and our own individual purpose. I know of so many people who believe if you do not hold a college degree, that you are uneducated and/or unintelligent and thus not on their level. This could not be further from the truth. I also know of those who believe so deeply in being college educated that if, for some reason, they are not able to attend college their identity and self-worth suffers. I was one of those people but thank God for grace!

As you can see, this is one of those topics that I could talk about for hours. It intrigues me, indeed. But enough of my thoughts on the subject, I’d love to get a real dialogue going. Go ahead, chime in and let me know your perspective.

New Year’s Message

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Last year, 2015, was pretty tough for my family and I but we made it through. I know this had nothing to really do with us but it had everything to do with God holding us through the trials and storms. I don’t usually make New Year resolutions because I think we can sometimes go way overboard when making these “promises” and we end up either saddened by our lack of commitment or angered when we mess up. As such, I have gotten into the habit of doing a vision board at the beginning of each year. I have not completed my vision board for 2016 yet but many of the key points, as of right now, point towards career development and developing my spirit-man more this year. I guess you could say that 2015, with all its bumps and bruises, made me appreciate life more and has made me want to fulfill my purpose a lot more now than ever before.

While I am not much into making resolutions, I do believe in allowing God to reign in my life and inviting Him to take my mind, my heart, my life and to mold it into something that He can be proud of. So, my “resolution”, if you will, is just to be more like Him. To listen like He listens, to forgive like He forgives and most of all to love like He loves. Many things are easier said than done but this is my commitment to my family, to my friends and to everyone that God will allow me to influence, in any way, this year and for years to come.

So, here’s to 2016! May it be the beginning of the best part of your life! May you know love like you have never known before, know peace and joy like you have never known peace and joy before and be healed like never before. No matter what may come your way, in this new year, my prayer is that you will allow the Lord to see you through to the other side. For weeping can only endure for a night, but joy must come in the morning!

Happy New Year to you and yours! 🙂

Santa Didn’t Stop By Our House This Christmas

So, I am going to be completely transparent with you all today. I know that what I am about to say may make some people question my parenting and whether or not I am a good mother. However, I could honestly care less about those people right now. Most of my readers already understand and know who I am and what my children mean to me and how serious I take my role as a mother and role model. Either way, I do say this with great sadness but also with a peace that I did the right thing.

Before we get started, I want to pose a couple of questions to you. Feel free to answer in the comments section below or just within your own heart and mind as you read. Have you ever had to teach your children a lesson that you knew would hurt them? Did that lesson ultimately end up hurting you probably just as much, if not more, than it hurt your kids?

Yep, now you see how serious this is…

no-christmas-allowedI made the decision to cancel Christmas for my children this year. By that, I mean they did not receive any presents on Christmas morning. Now, I am not one who gets particularly bent on a day because I feel like I can buy presents all year round and any day of the year can be “Christmas” however, this day is, and always has been, a BIG day for my children (and most children, and
people, if we’re totally honest about it).

I did not withhold gifts due to poor grades because my children have been doing exceptionally well when it comes to their academics. I canceled Christmas for a couple of reasons. One of those reasons being that I have CHRISTmas
been trying to help my children understand the true meaning of Christmas and why we celebrate it in the first place. I want them to know and forever understand that Jesus truly is the one and ONLY reason for this season, and every season.

The second reason was because I have gotten to my wits end in continuing to have to remind my children to do their chores, to the point that I am even doing many of their chores for them, and I wanted to help them understand that EVERYONE
contributes in a family. Also that everyone has a role and kinopoisk.ruresponsibilities within our household and that when we don’t do our “job” things just don’t function as well as they could or should. There have been other behavior issues with a couple of the kids but this is the bulk of why I chose to not have presents wrapped and under the tree on Christmas morning.

I wrestled with the idea of withholding gifts for quite a while. I had actually gone out and purchased presents for each of my children, multiple presents mind you, but at the very last minute I decided that some of their behavioral issues needed to be addressed and dealt with a little differently this year. I also did this because my children are far from jesus-vs-santa babies but they are not yet teenagers so, my thinking was that if I don’t teach them now, and begin to hold them accountable for their actions, they will never truly learn and adhere to it later.

All was not lost for our Christmas. We celebrated Jesus, ate ice cream, listened to holiday music, sang to various songs, my two older girls recorded their Christmas Day YouTube vlogs and we watched an outrageous amount of classic Christmas movies. We also made our feast of a Christmas meal that we have done every year since the children were all very young. I think they may have enjoyed Christmas a little more this year, even without the gifts, but Christmas-giftsmaybe that’s just the mom in me being hopeful that they actually “got it!” but who knows.

My original plan was to have a late “gift exchange” this year but I am still debating that. I am always trying to make sure that I am sending the right message to my children and I don’t know if giving them their gifts, after-the-fact, is sending them mixed messages. Y’all pray for me! 🙂

I hope everyone had a glorious Christmas and I will be chatting with you again in the New Year! Happy Holidays to you all!

Freedom Isn’t Free: It Always Comes With A Price

What is a veteran? According to Merriam-Webster, a veteran is anyone who has had long experience in a particular field. Maybe I should rephrase my question… what is a military veteran? A military veteran can be a man or a woman. He/she is someone whoV_Day-Feature-Banner-300x176 may be actively serving, discharged, reserves or retired. A military veteran is someone who has sacrificed much, including: time with family and friends, lost limbs, higher salaries that they could have been making in the private sector and have even, sometimes, sacrificed their very lives for the sake of freedom.

Maybe that is why some people’s first thought is not to tell the young service members “Happy Veterans Day” or celebrate them the way that they celebrate and honor the older generation of military members. Our first thought is typically that a veteran is someone older, right? Wrong.

I think we need to realize that our world has changed and our military continues to be a major part of that change. We have 18-year olds who leave as boys and girls and return to us as grown men and women. 19-year olds who have seen and done more in a year or 2 in the military than most of us have seen and done with our enVeterans-Daytire lives. 20-year olds who are sent to war, who deploy and come back home with all types of mental and physical wounds. These young men and women, just like the 75-year old WWII veteran, are too America’s heroes. They deserve the same honor, celebration, gratitude and appreciation that we display to the older generation of military men and women.

With that said, if you have not already done so, tell a service member ‘Thank You‘ today. And, if you are a present or former military member, let me take this time to thank you for your service and your sacrifice. I know, from experience, that it is not easy and you deserve so much more than we can ever repay. Also, to the men and women who have found their place in standing beside a soldier, sailor, marine, airman or coastie, please know that you are never forgotten. I, also from experience, understand the difficulties that you face as a spouse, child or other loved one of someone in the military. I truly honor you on this day for your service and sacrifice and for continuing to stand and support your service member through it all. We salute and honor you all on this, and every, day.

Past, present and future…

Happy Veterans Day!

Just When I Thought It Was Over…

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There are times when I feel like I am making some headway and doing okay. Then, there are times when I feel as if things couldn’t be worse and I am doing everything “wrong”. Just when I start to pat myself on the back for being the bigger person, something inevitable happens that makes me want to say things that I may live to regret someday.

I got an email from my lawyer yesterday evening that had been received by my ex-husband’s lawyer. In the letter my ex was pretty irate and stated that he was very unhappy with the fact that he has not heard from the children in a while. (I swear he is always upset about something and in turn tries to punish me at every chance he gets but I digress.) So, my lawyer forwarded this email to me to make me aware of the situation and to shoe me how my ex is planning to bring this up in our custody case at the end of the month.

Wow! That was all I was able to say to myself. This reaction would probably be a little different if I were to believe that my ex had actually tried getting in contact with the children on his own but I know that is not the case. The reason I know that he has not tried calling the children is because my phone has been turned on all this time AND he has my number. So, if he wanted to speak with the children he already knows that he is more than welcome to call my phone and speak with them.

Where my objection comes is when he puts it on the children – as if it is their responsibility – to reach out to him. Ummm… I’m sorry (okay, not really) but you are the adult, mister, and the one who left a hole in these children’s hearts so please act like an adult, pick up the phone and call your children – or their mother’s phone – if you are so seriously that upset and hurt that they have not chosen (or been made) to contact you.

His response to that would have probably been (and in the email it was, mind you) that he had been trying to call them on the cell phone that I got for them to have for emergencies and to contact their dad. Whereas my response, more likely than not, would have been that if he was unable to get ahold of them on their personal cell phone, there was still yet another way he could have made contact with them (i.e. he could have called my phone and voila, problem solved); that is if it was really that important to him which obviously it was not.

Also, if there had been communication between he and I, he would have known that the children lost their cell phone a couple weeks ago and have not been able to locate it as of yet. Knowing him, all of this would still have been my fault either for not ensuring that I didn’t “allow” their phone to get lost in the first place or for not informing him that it had been lost and not reaching out to him. However, I obviously believe he is more than capable of reaching out to us if there is a “real” problem or a real concern, which he has done only once before.

It is just so amazing to me that there are men in this world who still feel entitled and who will stop at nothing to hurt their ex, in turn, hurting their own children as a result. Men who will continue to make everything that goes wrong, everyone else’s problems instead of seeing how they may have contributed to the problem or could have resolved it on their own end. Incredible! But again, I digress.

So, my goal wasn’t to rant and rave here… really, it wasn’t. However, it does feel a lot better getting that off of my chest so that I can move on with my day, week, month, year and just life, period. The goal of this post was really to give advice – and possibly gain some sound advice – on how to move forward with life when toxic people or things try to burden you, tear you down and hold you back. But I guess that will just have to be another topic for another day.

Until we meet again, Word-ies!

I am PRO child support

Why is it that there are so many different views on child support? There are those who look down on you for enforcing this LEGAL act. Then there are others who applaud you for not letting the non-custodial parent “slide”. No matter how many times I speak with someone about this subject, there is always one extreme or another. There is NEVER anyone who seems to be in the middle or even undecided on this subject, as I guess it should be. I mean, how can you really be in the “middle” about this issue and, even more so, what would that even look like?!?

The reason for this topic is because I was recently in court, with my ex, and I found out that he is working at a new job that he2yrsCS never reported. This job change was actually disclosed to me through others who told me that he was actually working at a new company but since he hadn’t mentioned anything to me, I didn’t really think anything of it or try to make a big deal out of it. Needless to say, I have been getting only $150/month for the 4 children we have together. This was based on his extremely part-time nightclub/bouncer job and NOT his full-time VA hospital job. Because of things like this, this is why I feel the way I do about the courts and about non-custodial parents getting off scot-free.

How can you live with yourself, as a parent (man or woman), knowing you are able and should be contributing more to the care and financial well-being of your children but you choose not to??? That makes no sense to me.

deadbeatMaybe it’s just me, but I feel like when you have a child and the relationship between you and the other parent does not work out, you should still hold the other parent accountable for helping to provide financially for that child. Most of the time, this is the only way the non-custodial parent will still be involved in the life of the child because, from my own experience, most of the time they are not mature enough or available enough to parent the child consistently and be there emotionally and physically as well – so, in my opinion, the financial should be enforced if nothing else is. You did not lay down and make those babies by yourself and you should not have to care for them by yourself.

Now, I totally agree that child support is meant solely for the support of the children. I do not agree with parents who use the child support monies on themselves. I will never understand why some parents take what is rightfully due to their children and use it to pamper themselves with new hairdos, manicures/pedicures, new clothes, new shoes, etc. Why is that money wpid-real_man_quotes__05not going towards getting your child(ren) all of those things and more??? That is also something that I will probably never totally get.

I just feel like single parents sometimes get a bad wrap, especially single mothers who pursue getting child support. Many men feel that all women are doing the same thing and that they are all just misusing the child support monies and only pursuing these payments out of revenge. My grandmother said that there is always a little bit of truth in everything so I suppose there is some truth in how these men feel as well. However, I also know that there are women who work hard to provide for their children and sometimes, there are men in (or out) of the picture who do everything in their power to avoid paying child support. Or, as in my case, they don’t report additional income in an effort to avoid paying even more, in child support, than they want to pay. Either way it goes, it is foolishness and it is a true sign, in my opinion, of a deadbeat parent.

I wish more people would support those of us who do right by our children and with the child support that we do get and stop treating us as if we are ALL the same. News flash….we are NOT all the same! And that’s my two cents….

To reject or not to reject?

So, maybe it’s just me but have you ever told someone, as kind as you possibly could, that they were not “the One” for you and they just had a total meltdown?

54067-End-Of-A-RelationshipWell, I have some firsthand knowledge of this and it almost always goes the same way. Maybe the guy is either too wounded to really see how possessive and insecure he is (has been) and he pleads with you to stay without truly hearing your heart or he flips out, makes false accusations and tries to make you feel like you are making the biggest mistake of your life.

Ever experienced either of those two scenarios? I honestly don’t get either one. There are “plenty of fish in the sea,” as some say, and all of us can move on to other people, and relationships, that will cherish and love us for who we are without giving another solitude thought to the hurt that someone else may have bestowed upon us.

Rejection is not the end of the world and sometimes it’s not even rejection. Sometimes it’s just a mature person, understanding that a particular relationship is not going anywhere or bringing to their life the things that they desire, and so they make the choice to end things rather than leading the other person on and making things more difficult in the long run.

So, why do we get all hung up on the perceived rejection of others? And, more importantly, how do we get over it? I have my theory and I invite you to disagree or agree as you see fit.

Here are a few things that I feel we could all do to improve the way we address rejection and react to certain situations…

GODendsKNOW YOUR WORTH

I, honestly, believe that we sometimes do not understand our worth. Many times when we are young, we feel we have our whole lives ahead of us and then something happens… we begin to get older, and life begins to feel like it’s getting shorter and shorter. This causes some of us to settle for less than we think, or God says, we deserve. I believe when you know your worth, you won’t settle but rather you will continue to go at it alone until the “right One” comes along, no matter how long that may take.

DEVELOP A HEALTHY & UNBIASED VIEW OF YOURSELF

If we don’t regularly take a good look in the mirror, we can be deceived into thinking we are someone, or something, that we’re not. There are so many men, and women, in this world that just accept anything and behave as society dictates is okay and have lost the very essence of who they are as a result. They compromise their morals and disregard their beliefs but still think they are “good people” or “gentlemen & ladies”. Really? I’m sorry but last time I checked, being a gentleman (or a lady) meant that when you went out on a date you went without the expectation of, or even the insinuation of, receiving anything physical/ sexual in return.

KNOW YOUR PURPOSE & LIVE THAT OUTtimewaits

When you are more concerned with living your life’s purpose and fulfilling your dreams, you really have no time to waste on people who may not understand or support where you are going (or where you desire to be someday). Because of this, it is so important that you know what you were put on this Earth to do and that you actually do it!

MOVE ON

Truth is, if someone doesn’t want to be with you, you shouldn’t try and make them stay. They will only, in time, grow to resent you and all that you stand for. My grandmother always said, “When someone shows you their true colors, believe them.” This simply meant that when someone shows you who they are and what they are all about, just know that this is their true nature, so don’t try to change them, just believe what they are showing you. You cannot be offended if you don’t take things personal, period. God is pointing out some things you may want to take a good look at and decide if this is the type of person you want to live with for a lifetime. If not, then be glad that you dodged a bullet and was shown some difficult things before you actually committed your time, effort, energy and life to this other person.

DON’T GIVE UP

The right person will eventually come along. Whether that be a day or 50 years from now, they WILL present themselves and it’s up to you to be ready for them when they come. That means getting into a good situation and truly understanding who you are and what you want out of a relationship before you commit to being with someone else. This could also apply to non-romantic relationships as well because sometimes we have to end friendships and other relationships in our lives either because they’re toxic or unfulfilling or otherwise unhealthy for us to be in.

So, tell me… is it just me? What advice would you give to someone who has to make the difficult decision to end a relationship (whether it be romantic or a friendship)? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic!

Happy Veterans Day

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I wanted to take this time to thank the men and women who have served, presently serve and will serve in the future. This day is often celebrated, in some way, by many different industries. Some people take the day off and some companies, and schools, close to honor this day. Others give away an item or service for free to our veterans and still others have parades or plan other events to show their appreciation to the men and women who have chosen to fight for our country and its freedoms.

There are simply no words to express how thankful I am to each and every one of you that have made the decision to serve. I’m sure the decision was not an easy one and it is surely life-changing. In some cases, the decision may very well have been one that some family members are still trying to cope with. At any rate, this message of thanks is intended for all of you. Yes, even you. To all of those that made the ultimate sacrifice and the families of those fallen and missing military members, you are forever in my prayers and will never be forgotten.

To the families of those who currently serve or have served, I take my hat off to you. No one knows the burden and loneliness that comes with being the spouse or child of a service member. Yet, no one can truly understand the pride that comes from being the family member of a soldier (airman, sailor, marine or coasties), either. It is a life that few choose to live out. It is definitely not for everyone but it is one that brings great honor to those who truly embrace it.

“Thank You” sure does not feel like it is good enough however, “Thank You” is all that I have to give. Be sure to thank a veteran (active duty, reserves, retired, discharged…doesn’t matter) and make a military husband, wife or child feel special today (and every day). Let them know that they are loved, appreciated and will never be forgotten.