Friday, September 23, 2016
Have you ever considered the connotations of an “after thought”? What it really implies? "It is something or even someone that did not play prominently in your thinking, something that just happened to be brought back to your mind (at the last minute), after you have done everything else of importance; a post script, as it were."
When it comes to dealing with people, no one likes to be thought of as an “after thought”. It is painfully cutting to the ego; it makes you feel as if you just don’t count; or as if you have no value in the eyes of the one who does it. You are definitely not seeing any love!
Recently, I had some relatives come to town. Admittedly, they did not come to see me or my husband, although we are biologically related. They had come to see other relatives who were more closely related. They stayed in town about a week. They hung out with the other members of the family and then, when they had completed their trip and was on their way back home, (literally in route), they decided to call and announce that they would be stopping by to say “good-bye”. “Good-bye”! I mused to myself. “They haven’t even had the decency to say, ‘hello’. ” I was a little upset, but I dared not say anything to my husband, because he would have thought that I was making too much of a thing. However, I was feeling a great deal like an “after thought”. As far as I was concerned, they could have kept on moving down the road, and never to have let us know that they were in town. I would have been alright with that.
I recalled how my husband and I, along with some other relatives, had spent considerable funds to go and visit these people, in the past. How we had spent hours on the road traveling, with them as our prime goal. Thoughts of how one of them calls at all times of hideous hours, sometimes waking us up, just to chat! My thoughts drew up times when we had gone out of our way to especially prepare meals for them, complete with dessert, when they had called ahead and said that they were coming into town, but would be staying elsewhere. Then there were other times when all of the family members had gotten together for a reunion, when they had come and we all simply enjoyed ourselves. But for them to come into town, and not even let us know anything about their activities; for them to spend an entire week, without inviting us up to where they were staying (even for a short while); for them to make no arrangements to visit in route home for at least an hour or so, was unacceptable! I resented being made an “after thought”. How dare they just show up at will, without us having an opportunity to properly prepare for them, really rocked my world.
Then the lesson kicked in: Although we are never an “after thought” with Jesus; we are continually on His mind, and the Scriptures declare in Hebrews 7:25, “…He ever lives to make intercession for us…”, which means that He takes our confessed sins and casts them away from us: they are hidden from the Father. Also, Isaiah 49:16 says, “Look, on my palms I’ve inscribed you;…” (CEB) Common English Bible; which means that our names were written in the palms of His hands at Calvary in the permanent marker called Love and by the prints made from the nails. Yet, He promised to come again, like a “thief in the night”. Similarly to the relatives, who only called ahead, while in route, and we didn’t have time to prepare to entertain them, likewise, Jesus will come. He has called via the Scriptures and given us multiple signs to watch for, which indicate how soon He will arrive. Therefore, we must, “be ye also ready, for such an hour as ye think not, the Son of Man comes.”
I was humbled by those thoughts; we are “always” to be ready for the coming of the Lord. When He comes, there will not be time to prepare. Consequently, this experience was a great reminder; an awesome lesson regarding readiness and the soon return of our Lord. With Him, I am never an “after thought” regardless to how I fall short. Therefore, I had to dismiss the bad thoughts that I had had toward my relatives and instead, praise God for the wonderful little life lesson reminder. Hallelujah!
Wednesday, September 21, 2016
To say that I am grateful to have learned how to operate a computer is a vast understatement! I am ecstatic!
I will never forget a day in 1995, about a week after Windows 95 went on sale, my eldest daughter, walked into my house with a brand new computer. She’d had it built for me. According to her, she was going to liberate me from my dinosaur Word Processor (which I thought was pretty cool) and bring me into the 20th Century. It was hilarious.
After setting up all of the equipment, which consumed the major portion of my desk (monitors were huge back then), because she had a printer also, she proceeded to sit me down and show me how to pull up the card game, Solitaire.
“I don’t play cards”, I protested.
“Please mother, just sit here and do this for me. It’s part of your training,” she retorted. “It will be fine.”
“I don’t know if I like this kind of training”, I grumbled behind her back. “What will playing this ridiculous game train me to do?”
Like a disgruntled child, who has received one of the latest toys, but does not understand the magnitude of what has just happened, I reluctantly sat there for the next hour, playing Solitaire, and mastering the use of the mouse. Duh!
That was the beginning of a very in-depth, hands-on training session, which has been ongoing over the last 21 years. As I’ve grown older, I’ve become a more cooperative student, in my humble opinion. She might have a different view of things. However, one of the most important lessons that she was careful to teach me was this:
“Be very observant of how you input information, because this machine is designed to only reproduce for you what you’ve originally put into it. Therefore, remember, ‘garbage in = garbage out’. So always think about the finished product, throughout production.”
Well, my daughter has always been an old soul. I talk about her more fully in my latest book, The Joy of Motherhood - http://bit.ly/PreJOyM. However, her advice that day, or shortly after I learned to use the computer, brings me to today’s little life lesson.
My heart is burdened when I see parents allowing their children various types of liberties, with little or no responsibilities associated with those liberties. I am disturbed when I see parents ask very young children (2-4 years old) vital questions like: what do you want to eat? What outfit do you want to put on? What shall we watch on television? Etc. I hardly believe that a child that young would understand the nutritional value associated with anything to eat, and therefore is subject to ask for ice cream or donuts for dinner! Nor would a child that young understand the impact of not dressing correctly for the proper season, thus running the risk of wearing sandals in the fall or boots in dead of summer; additionally, if a child is less than 8-10, he/she is incapable of discerning the differences of make believe and reality. This is why God gave children, adults to raise them. They do not possess the cognitive ability to make sound decisions relative to the issues I’ve addressed. However, too many parents are young and inexperienced themselves and ill-equipped to be responsible for another life. It is becoming more and more of a vicious cycle. No one has taught them "to keep their eyes on the finished product": a child who will become an adult.
Consequently, countless children are left to raise themselves, making poor choices out of sheer ignorance, which results in the input of “intellectual, social and spiritual garbage”, which is reflected in poor grades, inattention at school, inappropriate behavior, poor manners, disrespect for adults and/or any authority, and the list goes on. A child or even an adult can only reflect what has been input into their psyche, at any level.
However, all is not lost! God assures us that "He is able to save to the uttermost, all who will come to Him..." (Hebrews 7:25)
He also offers us the invitation to seek “wisdom” from Him and He will give it to us (James 1:5). Therefore, none need to despair. Let each of us strive to place our eyes on the finished product that God has assured that we may become, and what will come out, will be reflective of Him.
Monday, September 19, 2016
Know that this topic is going to be controversial; however, controversy is like putting seasoning into a pot of beans. The one thing that it is designed to do is flavor the pot: to make the beans more delicious. Therefore, as you read today’s message, take it as such: seasoning designed to flavor the concepts addressed by this blogger.
While watching a video by the late Dr. Sebi, the famous naturalist from Africa, transplanted to Honduras, I heard him describe how a hybrid is made. He basically said that a hybrid was a man-made fruit or vegetable; and in order to make a hybrid, one would have to take the “heart” out of one fruit or vegetable, and then graft it into another fruit or vegetable. He recommended that we not eat hybrid foods, because they were not natural.
When a hybrid is created, it becomes the product of two similar, yet different fruits or vegetables. And although the original fruit or vegetable maintains its identity, before the change; the hybrid really doesn’t have one; it’s true identity is forever lost. Additionally, the more often that one hybrid is grafted into yet another hybrid, the identity of what it once was becomes even more difficult to identify its true source. But the most important point that I took away from it, was that the “heart” of one fruit or vegetable had to be yielded/sacrificed, that it might be grafted into another fruit or vegetable, which leaves the first fruit or vegetable without a source to live on its own.
As an African-American, I have been taught that I came from Africa. However, the real truth is that my ancestry has been grafted into the lineage of our American British forefathers. The “heart” of the “African American” is no longer present and we have no True/Pure ancestry. We are hybrids that have been re-grafted so many times, until most of us are clueless as to where we originally derived. Consequently, I consider myself an American, who was taught that she is from Africa, I truly do not know.
And although, as an African-American, quite often I am rejected as being something not good for you, I do not unnecessarily lament over what others have done, or the mystery of my ancestry. I have learned to love the Bible and the Lord Jesus Christ. It explains my origin. It tells me that my true forefathers, Adam and Eve, were created in God’s image, in a garden in Africa. And since we all came from them, we are all one: we are all Africans! As a matter of fact the Apostle Paul states, in Acts 17:26 “From one person God created every human nation to live on the whole earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their lands.” Common English Bible (CEB) - Copyright © 2011 by Common English Bible
Also, the King James Version makes it even more intimate, when it translates the same verse saying, “And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation…”
Therefore, I’ve learned, in this lesson that we all bleed the SAME blood. Consequently, whether I know from whence my immediate earthly forefathers come or not; I believe that I am made in God’s image and that my blood is equal to every other blood. Consequently, that’s good enough for me.
More: Go to Lessons About God