Archive for December, 2009

Preparing For NEW

December 30, 2009

Read a couple of things this morning during my quiet time/prayer/meditation that hit me like a ton of bricks.  Because I believe there are no coincidences, it became quickly clear that both of these readings had been especially brought to me to prepare me for the New Year.

The first reading comes from a book entitled, “Until Today” by Iyanla Vanzant and talked about PURPOSE.  During one of her book readings/signings years ago she said something that has stayed with me and returns to me when I need it most:  “God has a plan.  That’s ALL you need to know.”   For me this was huge because I am one of those folks who wants to know what the plan is (and yes, I recognize that this is a part of my trust, faith, patience issue…I’m working on it – LOL.)  The reading this morning discussed OUR purpose within the plan and how few of us take the time to listen for our purpose.  No wonder our plans don’t go as planned.  It is not our plan that matters.

The second reading is from Proverbs 31:8-9.  From the New International Version of The Bible it reads this way:  “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute.  Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy.”

Sounds like PURPOSE and PLAN.

As you prepare for a new year,  cast off all that binds and blocks you.  Throw away those things that no longer serve or fit you.  Make up your mind to be on the lookout for your purpose or if you have been blessed to already know it, to walk boldly in it at all times.  Stop devising plans and worrying over their execution.  Wait and the plan will be revealed.  I’ll be joining you.

Wishing You A Purpose-Realized New Year!

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“Oh, What A Gift!”

December 25, 2009

Before I get started, let me be clear.  There is NO Christmas without CHRIST.  I mean a not so even close look at the name gives it away, right?

Oh What A Gift….LOVE – unconditional.  HOPE – unbelieveable.  JOY – incomprehensible.  PEACE – undeniable.  All this because God sent us His Son.  So what if calendars were different back then and December 25th isn’t the exact date.  Christmas isn’t a man/woman thing.  It’s a Spirit thing.  Don’t miss all that the Spirit of this season brings by bickering over technicalities.  Christmas; the REAL Christmas (not the one advertised right after Halloween) is bigger than all that.

I know.  It’s 2009 and it isn’t politically correct to talk so openly about Christ  – even at CHRISTmas (go figure.)  Fortunately, I never signed on the PC dotted line.

If you haven’t noticed, the past year has been a little short on LOVE, HOPE, JOY and PEACE for many.  You can’t find any of these gifts at Nordstrom’s or Macy’s.  No Personal Shopper or Secret Santa can deliver these.  These gifts cannot be purchased with coupons of gift cards.  There’s only one way to guarantee receiving these gifts, and that’s inviting a baby, born to a Virgin in a manger, who died on a Cross to rise again, to take up residence in your heart.  No bows, ribbon, tinsel or garland necessary.

This year more than any other in my adult life, I am grateful for THE GIFT that guarantees LOVE.  HOPE.  JOY. PEACE.  No worries on not being able to pay them off in time to place them under a tree.  No dodging collection agencies in their attempts to repossess.  There is no threat of foreclosure on these gifts.

So, if you and your family are fortunate enough this year to share presents purchased from your favorite shopping spots, be sure to bring home the real Christmas GIFT…..and share them.  They multiple when you do.

Merry Christmas!

Mother of a Black Prince

December 18, 2009

Okay, something else besides my son can be on my heart…but today it is not.

Months ago when the announcement was made that FINALLY Disney was doing an animated film with a Black Princess, I was overjoyed.  No longer would our voice come out of lions (and I did LOVE The Lion King) and hyenas.  A REAL Disney princess would be Black.

So what that it came 20 years too late for me to buy a comforter set for my oldest niece (I refused to have blond, blue-eyed, princesses be the first thing she saw every morning or the last thing she saw each night.)  My joy at the coming of The Princess and The Frog soon dissolved and turned into disgust and disappointment.  WHAT!!??? No Black Prince!?

Disney – SHAME ON YOU.  Every other princess had a prince who looked like her.  Why not Tiana?  As the mother of a Black Prince, this ticked me off and brought into question whether I would EVER give Disney any more of my money.

Guess it wouldn’t be so easy to criminalize our sons if the world thought of them as Princes, huh?  Well, anyone with a Black daughter, granddaughter, niece or cousin planning to take them to see The Princess and The Frog, be sure to have a direct conversation with her about why Disney chose to disregard and disrespect our Black sons – her Prince.  For those of you with little Black Princes of your own, I wouldn’t even take them.  Why show them a beautiful, self-determined, intelligent Black princess who doesn’t choose them?

Note:  The above was written before I saw the movie~  In honor of my feelings, which didn’t change after I saw the movie – I skipped the all important first weekend, not wanting to lend my dollars to its #1 status at the box office.  Just hope it doesn’t take Disney 75 more years to bring a Black prince to the screen. 

What this reminds me of, and what I want to share with each of you, is that it is up to us, to treat our sons as princes.  To pour love and confidence into each of them each day.  To give them the power to hold there heads high, despite what the statistics say about them and their future. To stop telling them what they will never be.   Let’s be sure to let our daughters know that our Black princes are worthy of their time and love.  No frog kissing required.

One more thing.  Following the plot, I see why they had to have a prince….AS IF HE COULDN’T HAVE BEEN AN AFRICAN PRINCE!!  Again, SHAME ON YOU DISNEY.

STOP and START

December 6, 2009

I couldn’t wait until our usual time together on Fridays.  Just saw the movie, “Precious” and we better STOP!

STOP judging and blaming.  STOP allowing ourselves to imagine we are so different from each other based on the texture of our hair, the melanin (or lack thereof) in our skin, where we live or with whom.

We better STOP ignoring the cries of our children; cries that look like anger, defiance, drug and alcohol abuse, promiscuity, apathy, homocide and suicide.  We better STOP assuming every pregnant teenager has a boyfriend and find out if she and her baby have the same father.

STOP shaking and talking about what a shame it is when we see mothers yelling and cussing at their 2 year olds.  STOP pretending that our sisterfriends are  just “tired” when they sit in darkened rooms, staring at TV sets for weeks.  STOP ignoring our own pain.

START loving (first yourself in all your glorious imperfection.)  START healing.  START listening and helping.  START letting your light lead someone else out of their terrifying darkness.  START loving children and the child inside every adult you see. 

Who knows, you may just fool around and save the lives of those generations we call lost.

P.S.  See the MOVIE!  And tell every mother, father, grandmother, teacher, social worker, teenager……you know.

Blood Don’t Make You Family

December 4, 2009

I was born into an incredible village; comprised of blood relatives and people born from other family trees.  Many times in my life it was the non-blood members of my family who loved and nurtured me; supported and encouraged me.  For this village, I am immensely grateful and can truly say that anything wonderful I have ever done or been is because of them.

I was fortunate enough to understand, at an early age, that biology didn’t guarantee relationship.  I embraced my village of non-bloods and added to their numbers throughout the years.  In my mind and spirit there is only one family and whether or not we shared ancestors makes no difference to me.

When people who didn’t understand the depth and breadth of family the way I did, complained to me about a disappointment they’d experienced because of a relative, I would utter what I found to be truth:  Blood Don’t Make You Family.  I often said that one day I’d write a book with this title to help folks get over what they felt they were owed by folks just because they had been randomly selected to share genealogy.  It would share the importance of relationships and the gift of receiving love.  It would take the time to  help us put down the unrealistic expectations we place on others just because of shared DNA and the absolute joy and peace that can be yours when you build a village of like-minded and like-spirited people; people who will lovingly go with on this journey with you.

My biological parents had 2 children.  I’m the oldest.  But MY FAMILY consists of an older brother I loved dearly for the 7 years I knew him before his untimely death; sisters I’ve met along the way who “get me” and love me anyway; a younger brother who always makes me smile even though we only see/talk to each other a couple of times a year…and did I mention the sons and daughters I did not have to labor with?  I’m “Auntie” , while my biological sister has no children and “Iya – our family word for grandmother” to grandchildren while the only child I gave birth to has yet to start his family.

Blood Don’t Make You Family.  So the next time you find yourself angry or disappointed because the “leaves” on your “tree” are unable to give you something you need or desire, open your heart to the people placed in your life.  There are mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, sons, daughters, cousins, nieces and nephews waiting for you.