Monday, December 2, 2019

Defining Word for 2020!

Hey Girrrl Stop Nation! We are about to enter a new year and a new decade and we need to get our planning, goals and intentions in our minds and on paper now! What will be your defining word for 2020? What one word will you pick to guide you in the coming year and make it a successful one?



Your word could be something like:

-Courage
-Do
-Bold
-Fearless

And the list goes on! Think about what your word should be, pray about it also and see what Word God shows you. This word is for you and should be your motivator in all endeavors! In addition to your defining word, I want to encourage all of you to choose a defining scripture for 2020! I know this will be difficult as there are so many but do your best to narrow it down to one!

I’m excited to share my defining word and scripture for 2020 with you all:
Self-belief 
Ephesians 3:20

Self-belief is my word for 2020 because I do believe it is one area that has held me back. There’s a twinge of doubt on my part as to whether I can do ‘this’ or ‘that’ and it is that twinge that has kept me immobilized. As I began to ponder on this notion I was led to this scripture, Ephesians 3:20, “Now unto Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us.” I serve a God who is able and because God is able, He empowers me to be ABLE (no pun intended) to tackle any task or endeavor I set out to do! The scripture goes on to say that God is able to do exceedingly, abundantly above all I can ask or even think! This just encourages me to dream bigger and not doubt because God can do it bigger and better than I can even imagine! But here is the part that really coincides with my defining word: ‘according to the power that works in us’ – this is where I can draw my ‘self-belief’ from! God says that when you come into this family of faith you now have my Holy Spirit living on the inside of you and it is the Holy Ghost which gives us power! Because of this power, I can truly do all things through Christ which strengthens me (Philippians 4:13) and this fuels my self-belief!
God is simply saying: 
You Have What Works, Now Work It! 

Ok, 2020 it’s on!!

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Death to Thankfulness


The season of thanksgiving has come upon us once again. As I reflect on being thankful I’m immediately reminded of all that God has done for me. I think about how God has allowed me to wake up each morning and how He has kept a roof over my head through perilous times. I think about how He has protected me from danger seen and unseen and most importantly how He has kept my mind when I thought I would lose it!

God has done so much for me that I can’t help but be thankful, not just at Thanksgiving but every day! Unfortunately, thankfulness can be easily eradicated when we participate in the following:

-Complaining
-Comparing



You can’t complain and be thankful in the same breath. When we complain about our circumstances or life occurrences, we are focusing more on our problem than the One who can solve the problem. Complaining takes our focus off of God and this is not a good place to be. Complaining keeps you in a place that is negative, dark and sad because it narrows your view of God’s presence even in not so good times. God says “I am always with you, I am your God, I will strengthen you and help you” (Isaiah 41:10). This isn’t conditional, this means God is with us in good times, bad times, uncomfortable times and always! Complaining is detrimental to your spiritual growth and overall well-being.

Comparing combats thankfulness in that it shifts your focus to your flaws or shortcomings. We should be grateful to God for how He created us, how He wired us, and for where He has us placed at this very moment. When we compare our lives to others, our abilities to others, and our situations to others we take our focus off the One who is in total control. This is truly a trick of the enemy because in our comparisons, we don’t have all of the external factors and facts to make a worthwhile comparison. It also produces a spirit of jealousy that is not pleasing to God. Jay-Z said, “What, you mad cause you push dimes and he sell weight? Y’all don’t’ know my expenses, I gotta buy bigger plates…and more baggies – why you all aggie?” (Heart of the City). Point here, you don’t know all of what people go through to be where they are, so comparison is death to thankfulness.

Complaining and Comparing cannot co-exist with a thankful heart and thankful speech. They are unable to cohabitate and be roommates! A known fact is that life is hard; but a hard reality is that it can always be worse. The truth of the matter is that there is someone right now, praying for the life you have, the one that you sometimes complain about or the one you sometimes foolishly compare to someone else’s life.

Be thankful in this season and always for where God has you now! God is constantly at work behind the scenes, interceding on your behalf!
Happy Thanksgiving to the Girrrl Stop Nation, I pray you all have a wonderful time with family and friends during this holiday season!

Give thanks with a grateful heart
Give thanks to the Holy One
Give thanks cuz He has given Jesus Christ, His Son
And now, let the weak say I am strong
Let the poor say I am rich
Because of what the Lord has done for us
Give thanks!

Tuesday, November 12, 2019

#iSmile – Are You Packed Yet?


It’s been said that people may not remember what you said to them but they will always remember how you made them feel. This is how I remember Brock Benbow as one who would make me smile. I’m one of those people who if I hear someone laughing, I don’t even have to know what they are laughing at, I’m probably gonna start laughing too! Same goes for when someone smiles: you smile, I smile. Brock had a smile that seemed to be etched on his face, it never moved. I imagine that even the undertakers will not be able to contour his face away from that smile.



God decided to call Brock, my Sunday School student, home on November 11, 2019 at the tender age of 24 years old. So young, so sudden. I’m finding it hard to grapple with this one and I even find myself at times questioning God. Why him God? Why this one? Why now? The questions fill my head but they topple over when I re-focus on the fact the God knows best. I am grateful that I had the opportunity to spend the majority of the last weekend of his life with him. He came over to my house Friday night along with his best friend Lamont to help me move some furniture around and I took them both out to dinner afterwards. Ironically, one of the topics of conversation at the dinner table was ‘friendship’. Brock and Lamont affectionately talked about how they met and how their friendship had flourished over the years. They talked about things they wanted to do in the Youth Department at our church and just things in general. The food wasn’t that great at Cracker Barrel that night but I remember Brock ate his food with a smile regardless.

I saw him again on Sunday for our church’s 92nd church anniversary. All smiles again as he was donned in his purple to represent our current Pastor. He asked if we were all going to go to Mia’s house (my cousin) after church and we all agreed after some laughter about it from Minister D’Warren! As everyone gathered at Mia’s house the laughter and jokes commenced. I caught some of them as I was in and out of sleep but one of the last questions I remember asking Brock was, “Are you packed yet?” He was set to go on our Pastor’s birthday cruise Saturday, November 16, 2019. He replied, “No, not yet”. I said, “You betta get packed because Saturday will be here before you know it!” and he calmly replied, “I will, tomorrow”.

Tomorrow came and what I discovered was that he was indeed already packed and ready to go on his final trip.

Are you packed yet? Are you ready for your final trip when it’s time for it? I hear you asking ‘what exactly do I pack for that trip, what type of luggage do I bring?’ For this trip, you must prepare for it early. Your heart is synonymous with your luggage and you must carry certain things inside! Let your luggage be:

-Stuffed with the gift of Salvation (Romans 10:9-10)
-Layered with Love (Galatians 5:22-23)
-Jumping with Joy
-Padded with Peace
-Kindled with Kindness
-Growing with Goodness
-Filled with Faithfulness
-Girded with Gentleness
-Saturated with Self-Control

So, I ask you again, are you packed yet?

Brock is with Jesus now, cruising in heaven. I will miss his etched-on smile, his mannerly personality and his calm, even-keeled demeanor. I never imagined that my conversation with him on the couch at my cousin’s house would be my last conversation with him. You never know what God’s plans are and how any given day will go. What I do know is that I was blessed not just to know him but to have a relationship with him; a caring young man who was saved and loved the Lord!

I will truly miss you Brock but I know you’re with Jesus now in eternal rest.
So, I’ll just sign off with this:
#iSmile

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Finish Strong!


Well it’s about 60-something days left in 2019 and I want you to know that some great things can still happen! Maybe you’ve missed the mark on some of your 2019 goals. The good news is even if you didn’t fully get to goal, there is still some time and room to make some serious strides! Here are 3 things you can do to finish strong in 2019:



-Re-Visit! – Visit your ‘why’ again, that reason why you wanted to complete this goal in the first place! Why did you want to start the business? Why did you want to begin the ministry? What is your big ‘why’? Visit that place and discover why you wanted to complete this goal! 

-Re-Ignite! – Once you’ve re-discovered your ‘why’ now you can re-ignite the fire that gets you pumped! Read some inspirational posts like Girrrl Stop or put on that song that motivates you and gets you going! Whateva you gotta do – do it and re-ignite the fire within you!

-Re-Do! – Just do something! I don’t care what it is, do at least one small thing that will inch you toward your goal. If it’s to start a business, work on getting your website up and running or even your business cards printed! Do something!!

Taking small steps toward goal are great ways to have quick wins!
Quick wins are a surefire way to finish strong!

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

It's All Good!

Romans 8:28 - And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.
I wanted to just touch on this scripture a bit more this week as we talked about it briefly the week before last. What I love about this scripture is the assurance it gives us because of the One who is in total control! Let’s look at it a little more closely. 
And we know…
I don’t have time in this post to touch on the conjunction ‘And’ because that would have us speak about the verses before this one (Girrrl you should read it tho!). So for purposes of this conversation we will start with the word ‘know’. There are some things that we have to be completely sure of and have no doubt about! We have to know who Jesus Christ is and recognize his full authority over all of the earth and things outside of the earth. When we recognize God’s true authority and omnipotence (having all power), we will stand in full confidence that no matter what comes our way, God is in control. We must know this, being fully assured in this fact so that we never waiver on it. 
all things 
There is something that my Pastor says all the time about the word ‘all’ – it means the same in Hebrew, Greek, Aramaic, whatever – all means all! All things means simply all things: good, bad, ugly, hard, indifferent – ALL. We have to keep this in mind especially during the stormy seasons of life. You have to know that even these times are apart of the ‘all’ and although they are necessary – they are only temporary! All things work together for good! Even the not so good things may come for your development or to draw you closer to Christ. Either way – it’s all good! 
love God
They say membership has its privileges – it pays to be in the family of Jesus Christ! Loving God goes beyond just words but the word ‘love’ should be viewed as a verb, an action word! This means that we must show the love that we say we have for God! How? By living our lives as best we can according to God’s Word. 
His purpose
God has a purpose for all of us. What trips us up usually is that we tend to focus on our own purpose, plans, and desires instead of honing in on what God’s purpose is for our lives. When you key on what it is that God has for you to do, the obstacles of life won’t get you down as bad because you are always working toward the greater end! 

All things do indeed work for our good! The good things work for our good, the bad things work for our good, and even the hard things work for our good! This is comforting to know that because of who God is and who he designed us to be, no matter what the situation - It’s All Good! 

Defining Word for 2020!

Hey Girrrl Stop Nation! We are about to enter a new year and a new decade and we need to get our planning, goals and intentions in our minds...