Time is flying and just as fast as February came in, it’s rolling by just as quickly. So, I think this a good-a-time as any to refocus. I know last month, you made some resolutions and kudos to you if you are sticking to it, but the majority of us folks have laid those goals down by the riverside and watched them float away. If this is you, then refocus your goals…rewrite a new plan of action. You owe it to yourself to be victorious this year. Don’t let this year turn out like last year. Accomplish your dreams and then dream some more…then dream bigger! So what if you screwed up your list of goals for January. What’s important is that you get something on your list accomplished. If you what you initially planned to do is too much, cut it down to size. That’s wisdom. Don’t bite off more than you can chew. This makes you feel like a failure. But please, plan to do something and do it fearlessly! I have determined to live this year fearlessly. So, make those adjustments to your resolutions. Tweak those plans of action and make you goals winnable. And stick to it! You can do it!
January is known as National Mentoring Month. Since I am a Mentor Coordinator for an inner city school, I have been on the search for good men and women that have some time to steer deserving students in the right direction. So, if you have time, and I am sure you do, volunteer at a local school, church, or community organization and mentor a student. It’s one of the most rewarding experiences of your life. Why don’t you become the change you want to see…one student at a time!
Rosa Limonada…make them lemons count for something!
Maintenance…a word you mostly only think of when it comes to getting an oil change or your tires rotated. Maintenance is simply the upkeeping of something. You know, to make sure something is in proper working order.
Well, I know it’s been a few weeks since I’ve last posted. I’ve been resting since I just gave birth about 3 weeks ago. My little girl is a doll…so cute…cuddly…precious…looks like me…lol (so I would like to think)! Three weeks ago, I anticipated what I would go through to deliver baby girl. I thought labor and delivery was going to be a BEAST. I had heard so many horror stories about what I would experience 3 weeks ago, but my story was very much different. It wasn’t bad. I could actually do it all over again. I had more pressure than pain…thank you Jesus!
Ok, I am going somewhere with this. I use my maternity experience because it’s the most recent time in my life that I can relate to what I want to convey. The birth of my baby, Bella, is like a dream come true. And with any dream that comes true, the work of that dream is not done because it came to pass. No, no, no! Work gets harder. When a dream comes to fruition, you have to maintain the dream or it will die. You work hard to get the dream, you work harder to keep it. Just like my car…it was pretty easy to get. You know, good credit…down payment…insurance…drive away with car. After I drove away with it…gas…car note…oil changes…brakes…tires…insurance payments…and the list goes on. And like my Bella…she was pretty easy to get ;0) You know! And now to keep her going…2-3 hour feedings…diaper changes…clothing…bathing…shelter…training…and the list goes on and will go on for many years to come. The real work has begun!
So, you gotta dream, huh? Well, count up the cost that it will take for you to reach that dream. But also consider the cost of maintaining your dream. Remember, maintenance is no joke :0)
This year has been a trip! I have experienced the highest of highs and what seems like the lowest of lows. All the while, I have had to learn that my mental disposition does not have to change like the wind because of my current circumstance. It hasn’t been a walk in the park…not at all! Trying to convince myself to believe what I know in my heart is true has been very difficult. I can honestly say that my mind has been slow at catching up with my spirit. Which makes me so mad because I should be strong and not waiver. There! I said it! “Waiver” seems like a curse word. Yes, I have been wavering, not in my faith, but in my ability. Which, I found out, is my problem! Duh! Let’s just say it took a long time for me to get it…”ATIYA, YOU CAN’T DO IT!”
Since January, I have been trying to do everything in my own strength. Even though I’ve sent up prayers, I still moved forward in what I thought was the right way, instead of waiting for God to give me the instructions. I don’t know about you, but I have a problem with waiting. I want what I want now! I am still under construction, so don’t judge me!
I could go on and on and on about how I don’t really understand the plan of God, but that would just be psycho-babble. I don’t really have time to ramble on about that because that is another blog. I do know that I am doing my best to stay under that hand of God. And, if I stay under his hand, his plan will fall into place for me. So, since I can’t….I won’t. I will count on his ability and not my own. After all….He’s God!
It’s amazing how your current situation can shape your thinking and make you see things you may have never seen before or bring light to an area you’ve long forgotten about. Being pregnant has really stretched me…literally and figuratively. If you didn’t know, a woman’s pregnancy is supposed to last 40 weeks, which is equivalent to 10 months. And, I am approaching 10 months in 3 days. As I move closer and closer to my expected due date, I am experiencing so much discomfort and pain in areas that I didn’t know had feeling. I don’t want you to stop reading…especially if you are a guy. This is really not about being “pregnant” with a baby, but it is. Just work with me!
Believe it or not, men and women are pregnant. You’re pregnant with purpose..destiny. You were created to solve a problem, otherwise you would not exist. Your life is important to the world and you have to make a contribution…whatever that is. Your mission is to find out “why you are here!” Once you figure out your purpose, it begins to settle within yourself, just like an embryo. As you pursue your destiny, it grows…you stretch…you experience precious moments along the way. The closer you get to your due date, you experience a discomfort like no other. And when it’s time, your purpose will make her entrance into the world for all to see!
So, deal with the stretching in this season. Deal with the pain and the pressure of your destiny. Even though it tarries, wait for it! It will surely come to pass and it will make an impact in the lives of many.
You are so close….
Today, I woke up in great spirits. I rolled out of bed and I got myself together all on my own, without the assistance of anyone. Thank God! Shortly after leaving the house, I became overwhelmed with the cares of life. Isn’t it funny how that “rusty dusty devil” comes in and tries to steal your joy….just like that! And just like that…I was zapped. My faith, hope, joy, and peace of mind were jarred! Lord, what in the world is going on? I found myself taking on life’s problems, only to be reminded by that sweet, still small voice…”cast all your cares!” So, while in the Unemployment Office, I offered up this prayer under my breath while this situation was unfolding.
Lord, give me favor. Amen!
And you know what? He turned it around…just like that!
The Lord is good! That is all!
This week has been really trying…mentally and physically! Considering, I am actually carrying another life around inside of me and it’s the home stretch. Not to mention, I am being stretched and it feels so uncomfortable. I know everyone knows what that feels like, pregnant or not. But, as this week comes to a close, I just thought that I would remind you of what I had to remind myself in order to not just “kirk” all that way out!
1. God hears you. He just decided to answer someone else’s pray and that should bring you joy because he’s in your neighborhood.
Don’t be discouraged because the Big Guy hasn’t answered your prayer. He’s in the vicinity. After all, he just answered your friend’s request. You’re next in line. Rejoice with your brother or sister in their happiness!
2. Someone is always more worse off than you! So, stop complaining and give thanks!
3. If you don’t believe, why do you think someone will believe you??? Had to ask and answer hard questions this week. Ouch! Just answer it, change and keep it moving!
4. Finish what you started! Starting is my name and finishing should be my game :0/ I jumped back on the bandwagon this week.
5. You won’t be where you are forever. It’s just a pit stop to the promise land.
Don’ t be down in the dumps about where you are. Things have always worked out and they will continue to work out. It might just take a longer time to work itself out this time. In the meantime, think positively and daydream about where you want to go. It makes you feel better.
6. You already have everything you need to do what you want to do. You just have to unlock it from within yourself.
I am still working on this one. I am a tough cookie to crack!
7. You are never alone. God’s with you on the mountain top and in the valley. I just wish He’d keep me on the mountain. Tired of visiting the valleys. Who knew there were so many valleys in this world?!?!?!?
8. Life is truly grand! It’s all in what you make it.
Whether you have a surplus or deficit in the bank of life, you can always find the good in it. It all depends on your attitude towards it.
Selah (Think About It), Lemonade Drinkers!
“Don’t ignore the elephant in your room!” That’s what we do all day long. We neglect an issue/issues that we know is in need of our immediate attention. However, we continue to walk around the “elepant” like it’s not in the room. Well, let me tell you something (in my Fire Marshall Bill voice)! IT’S NOT GOING ANYWHERE UNTIL YOU ADDRESS IT!
Addressing your “elephant” is hard work. It’s definitely not an easy task because you have avoided it for so long. It’s gotten bigger and bigger. Just look at it’s size. It’s been making noise in your life and it won’t leave easily. But, it’s not impossible to defeat.
Here are some helpful tips in getting that elephant out of your room and back into the wild where it belongs.
1. Admit that there’s an elephant in your room- Admitting that you have an issue is the first rule of thumb to recovery. This may be the hardest step to accomplish because you are being honest with yourself about your neglect. It takes some serious soul searching and builds great character and integrity.
2. Address the elephant- Talk to your issue. That’s right! Talk to it! Tell it that you are no longer going to allow it to rule you. You will most likely have to talk to your issue everyday because it’s hard of hearing. Tell it where it can go.
3. Eliminate behaviors that keep the elephant around- Examine yourself and your habits. I am 100% sure that you are doing things that keep that hefty beast around. So, one by one, change those behaviors. Don’t try and be a super hero and tackle them all at once.
4. Celebrate your victory over the elephant- Each day that you overcome your issue, its gets smaller until it doesn’t exist. So, celebrate your “wins.”
These steps may need to be repeated multiple times depending on how many elephants you have in your room. For some, you may have an entire jungle of wild animals in your room but they can be overcome…one by one. You can do it!
Beware of pushing the elephant from your room to another room of the house. Contrary to what you may believe….removing the elephant from your room to the living room is not getting rid of the issue. You just made things worse because you are now worn out from all that work!
So, I watched this movie last night called “Sanctum.” It was really good but everyone died except for one 17 year old boy. Pretty sad, huh? Well, I hope I haven’t ruined the whole movie for you, Ha! It is inspired by a true story, in which all 15 divers do survive. That made me feel better after researching it. Anywho….I was inspired to write this because I was truly inspired by this movie. The tagline of the movie is, “The only way out is down!” Go figure! Let me explain.
In this movie, the divers were already in an uncharted, unihabitable place. Doesn’t that sound like your lowest moments in life? At those moments, it seems like you are the only one going through it and you know that you weren’t meant to stay there, but it’s pretty hard to wrap your mind around the concept at the time. Let’s move forward…
Due to an unexpected storm, the entrance to the cave became blocked by slidding rocks. Again, sounds like life! When you’re already in an uncharted, unihabitable place, unexpected circumstances arise to make challenging matters worse. Since the way out was now non-existent, the divers were forced to move forward in an unexplored cave to find their way to the ocean. Their only way out was down…deeper into the unknown.
With all that is going on around you, it is true…the only way that you can escape this uncharted, unihabitable, unexpected, unknown place in life is to go down….get into that situation and find another way out! How? Well, for me, this translates to “getting down on my knees.” When I feel like there’s noway out, I have to seek counsel from the greatest counselor…the Holy Spirit. The Word of God promises that he would lead and guide me into all truth. With his guidance, life becomes charted, inhabitable, expected and known. In God, I find my way out of the rock and the hard place.
So, if you are feeling the pinch of your problems, remember….The only way out is….DOWN!