It’s okay to look, but No turning Back!

One of my new favorite shows is on TV one, it’s called Way Black When. This show is all about music, television and movies from back in the day. The show has gone all the way from the 70s, 80s and 90s. It’s such a feel good show. I’ve had a chance to see great performances from singers and groups who are still in full rotation in my I-pod. I also enjoy being able to find out what’s going on with some of the stars of the shows and movies that I continue to watch over and over again, know all the words to and dare somebody to say something when I repeat them . This show is a tribute to Black History Month, but it also is a way for us to stay connected to some of our favorite moments of the past. When I watch this show, I think back to my childhood. It makes me smile to think about how I didn’t have a care in the world. Sometimes don’t you just wish you could go back to those days? No worries, no doubts, just enjoying family, friends, and cherishing good times. Whatever happened to those days?
The good ol’ days is what my grandparents used to call it. The days when nobody bought a gun to a fight, or penny candy actually costs a penny. Going to school every day didn’t have to be enforced, kids wouldn’t have had it any other way. Jumping double dutch was an artform (well for some, if you know my story, I was more of a turner Lol), and playing in the sandbox, riding your bike and playing sports weren’t even considered exercise. When rappers didn’t need to call women b****** and h*** to make a profit, and because of a group called the Fat Boys, it made it ok for people to say someone was fat and they not be hurt. A woman named Teena Marie, aka Lady T (R.I.P) made everyone believe that having Soul wasn’t about color, it was a true gift. Ralph, Bobby, Ricky, Ronnie and Mike were in every young girl’s fantasies. When mama would scream bring yo butt in before the street lights come on, and we would listen. Neighbors were like family, and teachers, not famous celebrities, were our heroes. Going to church every Sunday and about 4 days out of the week was the norm. Oh how I could go on and on. There are so many fond memories that make me smile. Yet there are some memories that I admit I am happier because they are just that… memories.
The reality is that we can’t turn back the hands of time and go back to those days. That time has passed and we must live in the now. The point I’m trying to make is that no matter how hard we may try, yesteryear is just that. We must look to the present and have Faith in the future. Good memories are always going to put and keep that smile on our faces. However, there are so many people out here that have allowed negative memories from their pasts to dictate how they live their lives. They allow themselves to fall victim to not moving forward, and they continue to make excuses for not doing better or believing they deserve better. You can’t let past hurts, disappointments, nor any traumatic experiences, hold you hostage from your breakthrough of being able to move on. God would never bring us this far to leave us. The past is supposed to represent that full spectrum of life’s lessons that we go through to learn and grow from. It’s supposed to remind us why we left the past negative situation in the first place; so that we don’t make the same mistakes. It’s supposed to be the lighthouse we need to help lead us out from the dark. There is a past so that we are able to look back, yet appreciate the present, and there is future so that we can look ahead and believe that it’ll all work out in the soon to come.
There was a song called Back in the day by Ahmad. The chorus was, “Back in the day when I was young, I’m not a kid anymore, but some days I sit and wish I was a kid again.” It’s okay to think about back in the day, way back when, our past, and where we’ve come from. However, it’s so important to know that everything we’ve gone through, good and bad, has led us to the places we are at right now. So be grateful from where you’ve come from, even if you still have a long way to go, and remember you can glance or even reminisce, but no turning back!


Love Lockdown

In slight recognition of Valentine’s day (no hate LOL), I felt inspired to write about love. Wait a minute, not about my own personal story (we haven’t gotten acquainted enough for me to be that open yet). Instead, my muse for this post is Kanye West’s song, Love Lockdown. This is such a dope song about the different ways that we express love, turn away from love and even ask for love. Everyone has their own interpretations of what they think this song is about, and here is mine. First off, I would like to take the time to talk about that love or shall I say, that agape love; the love we receive from God, yet often don’t return it to others and even worse not to ourselves.

The Webster definition of agape in the noun form means a love feast. In the adjective form it means wide open; gaping. So in layman’s terms, agape love is to be wide open to love; a feast of love. Now the Spiritual/Biblical term for agape love can be found in Mark 12:30-31: “And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. This is the first commandment. And the second is like this,’ You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” That is why love is not to be played with or tossed around, with it comes a great responsibility. I used to believe that responsibility was the other person’s heart, but now I know that it’s actually the responsibility to the Word of God. See, for God so loved the World that He gave His only begotten son, and that’s the deepest, most unconditional agape love. That is the perfect example of God’s love for us, and it should be the main reason why no matter what the circumstance, we will continue to spread love wherever we go.

However, love is sometimes diluted, misused and even neglected. It is misunderstood, and for some it is so easy to hold back and keep to oneself. Many believe that love makes you foolish, it blinds you and causes you to make mistakes in the choices you make. However, if you believe in the love that God has given us, then you’ll realize love makes you fearless and when you trust in Him, you stop making selfish choices and make selfless choices. It’s no longer about what you can gain, what you can get back in return. See, with agape love you already know your Blessing is right around that corner. Once you follow His commandments, He gives unto you the desires of your heart.

 Now look, I understand that the setbacks and heartbreak of life have caused people to refuse to acknowledge love’s existence, hence the saying, ‘Love don’t live here anymore.’ I have been one of those people at times. Yet, I admit that during those situations, I decided to take matters into my own hands. I was going to work it out on my own, because I wanted answers, or I wanted to let somebody know you can’t do me that way, or I just wanted to be right. Do we hear the trend…yeah, I was all I thought about. I allowed myself to be so consumed with making the outcome what I thought or determined it should be. I denied the lesson that I was to learn. My heart was outnumbered by all the thoughts in my head. And in the end, God had to let me, myself and I face the consequences of my decision to not trust in Him. Sound familiar to anyone else (I know I’m not the only one)?

Love is the greatest gift that we can give to others and most importantly to ourselves. Showing love includes surrounding yourself with those who give and receive love as you do. When you’re happy, others can feed off of that, be inspired by it, and continue to uplift you. For God is love, and He Blessed us with a gift that is meant to be shared and spread throughout the Universe. Love conquers all! It keeps a smile on your face, and turns the sadness to happiness. Love makes your enemies your footstools. When you love you, you make better decisions about relationships and instead of settling for Mr./Ms. Right now, you can be ‘happily in waiting’ for Mr./Ms. Lifetime. Take your love off of lockdown, because as Kanye so eloquently puts it, “You Lose!”

Keep on Walking

I am a huge Mary Mary fan, and I’m so happy to hear they have released some new music and are going on tour with Bebe and Cece Winans.  The song is entitled, “I’m walking,” and when I heard this song it just felt so right for my own situation and for many of my friends and family.  This road to Glory is filled with so many trials, tribulations, crossroads, setbacks, etc…  The key to survival as a woman/man of God is to keep on getting back up and pushing forward.  This song is about our “walk” to a place where we all want to go…Heaven (had to throw in a little Bebe and Cece).

My walk thus far, could actually be broken down into a miniseries, a soap opera at times, yet overall an autobiographical story of triumph and the Will to never give up.   From childhood to teenage years to young adulthood to now, I have fallen, gotten back up  just to fall again and then do it all over again.  Each time I fell, I wondered why I was going through that particular experience at that time.  As I continue to grow and become wiser in the Word, I know that with every situation, there is a lesson that God wants us to learn.  Sometimes it takes us having to be faced with the same situation again and again, yet the plan is that we eventually learn that lesson, and can move forward.  Don’t be resentful and ask why God is punishing you, because He’s not.  Obviously, learning that lesson is the breakthrough that He’s trying to get you to.

Every single time I get up, the one thing I remember that is a constant, is that I stand up and I keep on walking.  I didn’t say run or a high pace jog, I walk.  The race is not given to the swift, neither to the strong, neither to the stronger, but to those that endure until the end.  No man knows the day nor the hour, however, we do know that He is coming back again.  This walk is our preparation for that time, our wake up call that there must be a walk.  You can’t try to slide through the back door, come before a certain time to get in for free, or hit up the bouncer to see if he’ll let you in; you see, “there is no guest list tonight!.”  In your own walk, you can’t forget that there are those who may not understand or those who decide not to walk with you.  We have to be careful about those who we decide to surround ourselves with, because how can those that don’t understand or are not equally yoked encourage you when they haven’t come into the acceptance that there must be a walk in order to get heaven?  In that case, all you can do is pray for them, and be that example that they have to look to, so that when that tug on their heart string comes and God is calling them, they can thank you for continuing to believe in them.  I will not turn my back on those people, yet I can’t slow down my pace or allow their misunderstanding to cause me to question or doubt myself.  Everybody has their own walk that has already been written. 

During this walk, we are also faced with challenges from the enemy, and these challenges are to take us off the course.  Their goal is to lead us to believe that we can take a detour and still catch back up.  It’s not about slowing us down per se, but altering our Godly walk, and making it a more worldly walk.  See the enemy is cunning and can deceive us into believing that it’s okay to step away from what God says.  But, speaking from experience, that step away could cause you to lose all the progress you made so far, and worse, it can block your Blessings.  Remember you are human, so don’t be so hard on yourself (I’m my own worst critic, so I do admit to doing this at times), recognize where and when you fell, brush yourself off and keep on walking.  My mama used to always tell me, “Girl stop that running before you hurt yourself, slow down, you’ll get there soon enough.”  I’m heeding that statement, and I’m praying for all of us that we continue to stay strong, keep God first and that we never give up on this Walk!

“I’m walking, I’m walking I’m walking”