“Can You Handle the Truth?”

We all know people who blame everyone else for their problems and/or failures; it’s never their fault. If you don’t know anyone like this, then maybe it’s You…

This may sound harsh, but it’s true. So, my question to you is, “Can You Handle the Truth?” Are you willing to face you? Are you afraid of what you may see (in you)?

If we are honest with ourselves, many of us can point out a myriad of flaws in others, but we have great difficulty recognizing some of those same defects in ourselves. And when we do, we have a ton of excuses to justify our weaknesses.

Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. Matthew 7:3-5 ESV

During this Chapter of my life, my goal is to learn the whole truth about myself. I have decided to acknowledge my shortcomings, work on the things I can change, and leave the things I cannot change to God. Even when others are hasty to shine the light on areas that I need improvement, I have learned to appreciate it; because no matter their intent, if it’s true, I want to fix it. It’s only going to make me a better person.

No, it doesn’t feel good at all. Actually, I HATE IT! But, the truth is: I NEED IT, and so do you. No one is perfect (except Christ); but we should strive for perfection in every area of our lives. We need to work on ourselves, before we try to help anyone else. We have to admit we need work. We must do the work. We must be open to critique and/or criticism at times. Let’s evaluate it and see if there’s room for improvement on our part, and if so, let’s get busy making the necessary changes. Can You Handle the Truth?”

So, That Settles It. The truth is: Everyone isn’t wrong about us. Everyone isn’t a “Hater.” Everyone isn’t jealous of us. And for the Christians, it’s not always the devil/enemy; oftentimes, it’s YOU. We have been trying for so long to convince ourselves that we have it right and everyone else is wrong. Not so! We have been deceiving ourselves, but now is the hour that we must progress. Can You Handle the Truth?” And, what are you going to do with it?

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“Loyalty”

People who are really Loyal don’t have to spend one second trying to convince others how Loyal they are!

I don’t think many people actually know the real definition of Loyalty. 

Loyal – unswerving in allegiance: such as

a : faithful in allegiance to one’s lawful sovereign or government

b : faithful to a private person to whom faithfulness is due

c : faithful to a cause, ideal, custom, institution, or product

Loyalty is demonstrated, it requires action, it requires consistency, and it requires faithfulness. I really want us to get this, especially Believers. Many Christians believe going to church every week is a sign of faithfulness, and it is; but there is more that is required than just going to church. If we can’t prove our Loyalty to God (not just church), then there’s no way we can be Loyal to others.

Why is this so important?

Many of us are believing God for “The Impossible” Dream; and though God Promises this to His sons and daughters, He requires something from us in return: Loyalty.

Think about it…

Would you go above and beyond for someone who only thinks of you when he/she needs something? Would you trust a spouse who continues to cheat on you with other people? Would you consider that person to be Loyal? NO! Neither does God when we treat Him as such. Let me also add that He knows the intent of our hearts, so He knows if our actions are for the applause of man, selfish gain/motives, or if it’s because we are committed to His work and the expansion of His Kingdom here on Earth.

Do to others as you would like them to do to you. Luke 6:31 NLT

Church aside, our goal should be to demonstrate true Loyalty in our families, our friendships, and our businesses. We expect people and companies to be Loyal to us, so let’s make sure we are holding up our end of the deal. Let’s put in what we expect to get out of every relationship, whether personal or professional.

But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Matthew 6:33

It is so disheartening to see people blame God when they don’t succeed or receive all the Promises of God. How dare we?! We want Him to remain Loyal to us, even when we aren’t thinking about Him. All He requires of us is Loyalty. Love Him and love His people. If we love Him, we will do what’s right (even if it does not happen overnight), including treating ALL people right. If we are honest, those times we failed were because either our motives weren’t pure and/or we didn’t put God first. His instructions are clear. Seek Him FIRST!

So, That Settles It. Let’s stop talking about being Loyal and let’s actually walk out our Loyalty, to God, our family and friends, and our Purpose and Destiny. Let’s be Loyal to ourselves. We deserve nothing but the best!

Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you; bind them around your neck; write them on the tablet of your heart. Proverbs 3:3 ESV

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“Good Morning…”

Ever notice how something as simple as a “Good Morning” text or phone call from that special someone can just brighten your whole mood and/or day? When this happened to me recently, I was reminded of something I told myself a while ago: “Giving (yourself) is the best gift, and every person possesses this gift.” It doesn’t always have to be tangible. You’d be surprised how much a smile, a kind word, a warm embrace, or just listening can make a person’s day. It is the greatest exchange, and you both leave with more than what you came with. You leave knowing you did a selfless act and helped brighten someone else’s day, and that individual leaves encouraged and uplifted.

But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant. Matthew 23:11 

Many of us want to be rich and famous, want a great job, or want to make a difference. We must realize, especially if we are destined for greatness, the only way we can get there and stay there, is by the way we treat people. God is not going to promote us if we don’t treat people right. Man can try to promote us, but it won’t last. True promotion comes from God, and His promotion comes with conditions, the main one being: Love.

This is something you can do now; no prior experience required. It doesn’t cost money or material things, just a little piece of yourself is all. A few moments of your time could literally save someone’s life. Especially in a world where everyone is always in a hurry; make time in your day to brighten someone else’s day. Let’s be intentional about it. You don’t know how your interaction may alter a person’s life, or if you may be the last person he/she encounters before leaving this earth. Tomorrow is not promised, neither for us, nor the people whose paths we cross.

So, That Settles It. Endeavor to leave everyone you meet with that “Good Morning” smile. You’ve heard the saying, first impressions are lasting impressions.” Well, I say, “Whether your first impression or your last impression, make it count.”

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“NOW”

This week leading up to my 41st birthday (Sunday, May 13th), I’ve felt this undeniable push to work a little harder, not just working towards, but accomplishing my goals and fulfilling my purpose. I don’t know if it’s because I’m getting older, or if it’s confirmation that my time is NOW, but I don’t want to miss it. There’s this passion arising inside of me that removes all fear and takes the limits off. I’ve said “I can do the impossible,” but now I actually feel it and believe it and I’m going for it! I have nothing to lose and EVERYTHING to gain!

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1

There are countless times in the Bible where people were living normal lives, perfecting their skills and no one knew them. Then suddenly, seemingly out of nowhere, God called them out to do a Great Work. They were the solution to the world’s problem at that time. Even those who didn’t think/believe they were ready, were equipped when their appointed time arrived. They didn’t have to get prepared, they were ready for their NOW; so are YOU! You may not truly know it until you do it, so just do it!

~David was delivering lunch when his NOW came, but he was ready.

~Gideon was hiding on the threshing floor when his NOW came, but he went on to do Great and Mighty exploits.

~Mary was living the life of a normal teenage girl when her NOW came, but she accepted her call and gave birth to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

~Esther experienced her NOW when she risked her life that her people might be saved.

If you keep quiet at a time like this, deliverance and relief for the Jews will arise from some other place, but you and your relatives will die. Who knows if perhaps you were made queen for just such a time as this?” Esther 4:14

So, That Settles It. Our time is NOW! It’s time to stop watching everyone else do it; let’s get busy! The world is waiting for me and YOU. There is Greatness inside of you, USE IT!

Happy Birthday to ME!

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“It’s Complicated…”

Ever notice your behavior when you are married, or in a serious relationship and you get upset with that person, especially if you live in the same household? You can go days trying not to speak to that person. You will move all the way to the other side of the hall if you have to pass him/her.

Well, let me ask you this: Have you ever felt that way with God? Tell the truth… Maybe He didn’t come through the way you thought He should or the way you hoped He would, so you felt like you would show Him by not speaking to Him, not really wanting to acknowledge Him; except you know that you need Him, so you speak as little as possible. Well I have! It’s Complicated

Many of the Saints of old teach the single people that “God is your Spouse while you’re waiting;” and I used to laugh at this, but as I reflect upon the relationship that I now have with Him, it’s true. Over this past week I wanted God to do something and He didn’t. I was upset with Him, I had an attitude, and I didn’t really want to talk to Him (pray). I did at least say, “Good Morning,” and I had to at least say, “Thank You,” when He did things like: give me traveling mercies and keep me safe throughout the day and night. I didn’t want to say anything more, and it was almost as if I could see Him just smiling and trying not to laugh at me for being so petty. I mean really, where else am I going? Who’s going to love me like He loves me? It’s Complicated…

It may sound cliché, but if you are like me, then I know you can relate.

So, how dare I get upset with God, you ask? Because I expect man to disappoint me, at some point in life (even if it’s not intentional). My issue is that I find it difficult to accept that God too, may at times, disappoint me. I know it’s not His intent to hurt me, and I know that He wants me to have His Best. Unfortunately, sometimes that means He has to deny my menial requests because they don’t measure up to the enormous blessings He has in store for me. Just like a good Husband, He has relentlessly pursued me, He protects me, He teaches me, He loves me, and He provides for me. He makes me feel like the most beautiful woman in the room, He reminds me how smart, witty, and brilliant I am. He is my Audience of One. How can I stay mad at Him??? It’s Complicated!

Once I have time to calm down and weigh the pros and cons, it’s impossible to remain upset with Him, so I apologize to Him. I ask Him to forgive me and I tell Him (like He doesn’t already know) why I was upset. I let Him know I was disappointed because He didn’t do what I asked. He forgives me and He reassures me that everything will be alright. Then He forgets my actions; He acts like it never happened, He never rubs it in my face again. Thankfully, His love never changes and it doesn’t diminish, no matter how foolishly I act. He is so patient with me.

So, That Settles It. Like a good spouse, God has to say “No” sometimes because He is concerned about the big picture: Your Future. The next time you have a challenge in your relationship with Him, remind yourself, “He loves me unconditionally, it may not make sense to me right now, but that’s the nature of our relationship, It’s Complicated.”

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NLT

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