17 Comments

He Gave Me Permission.....to Live My Truth!

We are in a “what it looks like” epidemic! It’s a time where we fix our actions and motives on what things will  look like to people, rather than living from the trueness of what God has placed in our hearts. We suffer paralysis, lack of fulfillment, and lack of authenticity all because of what it may look like, oftentimes just for a moment.

 

“I can’t do my hair like that because it will have to look like transition for a moment.”

 

“I can’t start my own business because I may end up looking like a failure.”

 

I can’t date that girl or guy, even though I know they’re really dope, because I need to know what they look like to people”

 

You see, we delay on God ordained relationships, business ventures, and divine calls from God because we choose to bow a knee to the master of “what it looks like!” I became weighted with this need to encourage someone to go after it, regardless of what it looks like! It’s a prison cell sent to disrupt your freedom, and you can walk out of it today! I know all too well how stifling, suffocating, and immobilizing living based on what it looks like, can be! People’s approval and permission was my stumbling block for way too long! That’s why I want you to live based on the new found understanding that He gave us permission...to live our real authentic life, apart from the pressure of what it looks like in our various stages and phases.

 

We have to go beyond what we may look like to man for a moment, to allow God to fulfill what He desires to last. We may look crazy, like a failure, or even weak; but it is crucial to exalt obedience to God over what we look like! God looked like He was defeated! He looked like he was weak! He looked like he was a failure, and not one of these things were actually true! It was just what it looked like for a moment, which is no match for what the truth really is! Be encouraged to live your truth unhindered by what it looks like!

17 Comments

7 Comments

Love Anyway!

One of the best gifts I’ve ever received was the gift to love. I remember being a little girl in the grocery store with my mom, and there would stand a person I did not know. It was my norm to ask them, “What’s your name? Do you have a husband?” Not sure why this mattered, but the thing that always followed was, “You’re so pretty, I LOVE YOU!” Loving people is something from which I get so much joy. This innate desire I have to give people what God gave to me that changed my whole world—his unconditional love, has always been a place of fulfillment for me. On the contrary,  It has also been an area in my life where I have experienced great pain. Have you ever heard people say, that your gift often times can be an area of weakness as well? I felt that way for a lot of years.

 

Not being perfect like my Daddy in heaven, Some of my attempts to love people well just didn’t turn out so the way I intended. With my best intentions, I like all humans, get it wrong sometimes. With that in mind, I have been challenged by God to do this thing that seemed  so unfair when I initially heard God say it, but I want to share it with you all! He said, “Jackie, LOVE ANYWAY!” Yep that’s right! No matter how bad people may have disappointed you, mishandled your trust, or caused you pain; always remember that they are still in need of love! God revealed to me that the ability to love people when they didn’t make the choice you wanted, to not be indifferent about them and to continue to pray for the very best for them. That is what makes us like him. Do you remember in the word when it says that people will know you are a true follower of Jesus, based on your ability to love one another! God’s expectation for us to love people even through tears and pain doesn’t change! He gives us the strength we don’t have in our natural man: to forgive and Love Anyway! The “anyway” part is what goes beyond the wrongdoing, to see the person’s need despite our own desires! Sounds like a Jesus move right! That’s exactly what it is! This call to love anyway isn’t something you will ever be able to accomplish GENUINELY without God being the source!

 

I challenge each of you! No matter what the situation was or how it made you feel,  LOVE ANYWAY! Ask God to give you the strength to give this type of love! You will never know how powerful the gift of loving people despite their flaws is, until you chose to! Unless of course you actually look back in the mirror and remember how many times God has done this very thing for you! It’s a beautiful thing to love! I’m grateful I recognize now that this is truly the mark of the Father being my Father, and I never see it as anything but a blessing! I chose to LOVE ANYWAY!

 

7 Comments

God is Everything!

5 Comments

God is Everything!

While laying in bed tonight, I was thanking God for all the ups, downs, highs, and lows that he has brought me through. He has helped me maintain my ability to love anyway, believe the best, and never move from a posture of prayer. When I say that he is Everything, I mean he is ERRRRRRRthang! 

So many of you beautiful women and even a few men often write me and ask for advice about various topics: Relationships, finance, grief, self-worth, and the list continues. What I have realized is that the answer to all of this is always Him. God gives us the know how, the courage, the right people to help perfect the areas of which we lack. He is our sustaining force. 

This is to encourage anyone out there who is struggling in your own might to make things work out. This is to encourage the one who can't sleep because of so many worries. Take rest today. God is EVERYTHING you need. Wherever he leads, simply follow.

wherever he leads, simply follow. (1).png

5 Comments

Rock Steady!

1 Comment

Rock Steady!

I'm just one of those women who firmly believes that the only way it's worth doing is if I'm going to do it right! I would rather do without a homegirl or romantic love if the fundamentals aren't there! 

 

So let's talk about it! Here are my top three pertaining to relationships of all kinds because if we're going to rock....let's rock STEADY!

 

  1. What is their relationship like with God? Notice I did not say: What will their relationship potentially become? I want you to evaluate first and foremost, is God number one in their life? Not just by word but by deed/action! 
  2. Do they know and understand who you are? If a friend or romantic potential doesn't know or understand who you are, the inevitable result is mishandling! 
  3. Does your voice matter? If you go to your homegirl or your new boo with something that is on your heart, you want to be sure that they can handle your truth! Will they not only hear you but also honor your voice enough to consider what you said and make adjustments when necessary?

 

If these three areas are solid, I've seen in my own life that the Rocking Will be Steady 😍!

Rock Steady Blog .JPG

1 Comment

You've Got to Know It!

1 Comment

You've Got to Know It!

Beautiful, intelligent, and just crazy amazing----The whole world knows it, but what do you think? When you see yourself, what do you think? When you walk into a room, what do you think? Or, when you start the journey of a new relationship, what do you think? Are you flooded with the expectations, thoughts and opinions of others? Do your own thoughts, voice, and ideas drown in the sea of "what are THEY going to think?"

 

I feel that we as women all go through a season of suffocating under the weight of man's approval. I know I did,  but let me tell you how I finally breathed in new life! The first thing that had to happen, was for me to see the fight for what it truly was! These weren't innocent little thoughts that came with no agenda. No! They were vicious lies planted to confuse me about my worth and halt my progression forward! The enemy knew that if I Believed that I was inadequate; then I would live from that place and inadequacy would be all that I could see. 

 

The moment that light bulb came on, everything changed! I began everyday to fight to only speak out those things that my Daddy says about me! I'm priceless! I'm a daughter! I'm equipped for every good work! Just to name a few! I noticed the days of feeling defeated, muzzled, and insignificant became few and far between! 

 

Ladies get in this fight for your SELF WORTH! This is a real war that we have to win! We are incapable of living right without first seeing ourselves right! Brave Woman----You are EVERYTHING to God! Make sure the world knows that YOU know that as well!! 

 

BE BOLD

BE BRAVE

BE FEARLESS

BE UNAPOLOGETICALLY YOU!

BeBoldBeBrave.JPG

1 Comment

With God it's Always GOOD!

1 Comment

With God it's Always GOOD!

Hello, my sister! 

Today, you might be in the fight of your life. The waves that are crashing down may even seem to be more than you can bear! I wanted to throw you a life line to remind you that in the hardest moments, GOD is still right there, which means you are safe!

 

I speak from a place of having fought through perfectionism, a miscarriage, a very premature birth and just being a water walker in general! I can tell you that I have had my share of stormy nights, but the one thing that never failed through it all was God being present with me! There were moments that Him being there was my only place of peace and comfort! There is something about the presence of Jesus that will stay your feet! Nobody holds you like Daddy! No one can calm your fears with the whisper of "I'm right here with you!" like Daddy can! 

 

Sis, I just wanted to remind you that He is the Great I AM!! He is strong enough! Even when we aren't, He is! If He's with you, you have to know that it's not based on what you see and not based on the outcomes but because of who God is - that GOOD is on the way! 

 

That's His word! He says I will make ALL THINGS work together for your Good! Be encouraged and don't give up because He is with you!!!!

Rock Steady (6).jpg

1 Comment

Out with the Old...In with the NOW

5 Comments

Out with the Old...In with the NOW

Do you have NOW faith? This question is such a piercing one as a Believer because we often think that the faith we have is current. 

For a long time, this was one of the major things blocking me from progressing the way I wanted to. I allowed myself to be okay with the faith God birthed in me while in undergrad, in dental school and as I fought for my son’s life. These were all moments that were absolutely defined by NOW faith in my life. The type of faith where you stay at the feet of Jesus to give you the strength to get through every moment of every second of every day. 

God wants us to see with “new eyes” how He is working in our lives daily. I had to recognize that those moments were amazing and life-changing for my faith, but I still had to get to the point where I was no longer satisfied by the faith instilled in me through what He'd done in the past. I had to grasp what I was confident and sure He wanted to do through me NOW! And THAT is what NOW FAITH is! FAITH for the thing He is wanting to fulfill in your life Now! Where is your NOW Faith? 

In life, God gives us faith to overcome every challenge we are going to face, but here is the kicker - we must use NOW faith to overcome these challenges. You can’t use strategies that worked yesterday for today’s battles! We have to walk in a current place with God in order for our faith to be ready for the Now things! My prayer is for Now faith for each of you! You will be back on the road to Forward Motion before you know it!

 

HEBREWS 11:1 

5 Comments

What If I Couldn’t Speak??

4 Comments

What If I Couldn’t Speak??

Acts 1:8 says, “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

This whole idea of being a witness for Christ is so heavy on my heart. Did you know that this is one of the reasons God left us with the promise of the Holy Spirit? We receive power when we encounter the Holy Spirit, and that power equips us to go out and demonstrate the character and essence of who God is. We are called to be His Witnesses! 

How many times have we said or thought as someone was giving us advice, “Don’t tell me - show me the proof of this in your own life?” You know, I’m so convinced that there is no better sermon preached than the one you preach with your actual life living. 

If you couldn’t say a word but everything was based solely on your actions, would it be enough to make someone want to give his/her life to God and get to know HIM better?

Ephesians 5:1 says, “Therefore be imitators of God as dear children.”

You can tell people about Jesus, about your church or what you know to be right, but if you aren’t willing to allow that same God to transform your attitude, fleshly desires and emotions to become more Christlike in lifestyle, then that’s false advertisement. 

Our God is strong enough to change us for real! All of us! We have to recognize that our actions speak much louder than our words! 

My question is, “Are your actions leading people to God or away from Him?” We have to be living witnesses, not just with words but also in our actions!

4 Comments

Inside Out

2 Comments

Inside Out

Hi ladies!! I want you to use this verse to overcome the idea of devaluing yourself based on anything external. God, our Great savior has rejected many, who from the outside looked like they had it all together; but inwardly the image was unauthentic. I want you to know that your value and worth emanates from your inner man! That's all Daddy sees! READ MORE

2 Comments

New, Looks Good on You!

11 Comments

New, Looks Good on You!

Have you ever bought a new pair of shoes, a new car, a new house? Can you remember the distinct smell, perfect shine, and the amazing appeal of the item upon possessing it? It's so amazing, how you can tell right away, when something is new! Newness has a look, a smell, and a compelling nature that makes it desired above all else.

How many of you are frustrated with the old? Old ways of thinking, old ways of communicating, old ways of getting results. You are weighed down by the the shame, guilt, disappointment, and even fear of who you've been. You desire to turn a new leaf, but somehow you continue to arrive right back to the place of the old you! READ MORE

11 Comments

I Gave Up!

20 Comments

I Gave Up!

I’m currently on a trip with my team and we decided to go kayaking. Yes, kayaking! We were all nervous about flipping the boats, falling in and the world beneath the waters we couldn’t see. The fear of the unknown had our hearts racing and nervous. We were trippin’! It wasn’t until we got in the water and gave up our fears of being submerged underwater that we relaxed and slowly drifted on the waters. We became still and rested in the beauty of His creation.

So I asked the team what is the one, big thing you’re giving up? READ MORE 

20 Comments

Make Room

3 Comments

Make Room

We live in this world but we surely aren't of it! Did you know that the way we see time, success, and even what's good or bad; is much different from God's perspective? You know we hear all the time that we are made in the image of Christ, and therefore our goal as a Christian is to become Christ like! He is always aiming to shift our perspective on the way we look at a thing! READ MORE 

3 Comments

Be Still

12 Comments

Be Still

In a world that is so fast paced, where it's all about making moves, the concept of "Being Still" is foreign to our generation! God slowed me down last night to have me examine what it means to Him in Psalms 46:10 where it says, "Be still and know that I am God!" He totally blew me away with the revelation that He exposed!

While reading my study bible, it showed me how the Hebrew meaning of the phrase "Be Still" can be translated as "let go!" Let Go! Really, God? You're really going to throw that kind of curve ball at me tonight?! READ MORE 

 

12 Comments

Just Ride

4 Comments

Just Ride

I was at lunch with a dear friend the other day, and God impacted our lives in a major way!

It had been a few months since we had some one on one time, and we knew it was long overdue. As we chatted about the new things that were happening in each other's lives, it was clear that this time together was orchestrated by God. I recall her saying, "Jack, I'm good; I just want to know for sure what my purpose is!" "You know, it would be good to know for sure in what direction I'm headed!" "I sense that there is so much in me, that He wants to do. I just want to know what it is!" READ MORE

4 Comments

What Every Mom Wants to Hear

6 Comments

What Every Mom Wants to Hear

"I see you" and "I'm listening" are the words we often long to hear. We give our all to being the very best mother to these beautiful gifts God has blessed us with. Our new normal becomes a life of not enough sleep, very little personal time-(bathroom time included 😩), and from the moment our eyes open, we are strategizing on how to make this the very best day for our families-talk about a full-time job! Oh, if their little hearts could speak!  I'm sure we would often hear things like: "Mommy, there is no place where I feel more safe than in your arms!" How these little words would calm our fears when they are not feeling well and we feel that we don't have the answer, or when we are so sleep deprived that we just cry from being a bit overwhelmed. READ MORE

6 Comments

23 Comments

Are you "In Your Feelings?"

Have you ever looked back at a yearbook picture and wondered, "What was I thinking when I decided to put that on?" Or maybe it was reminiscing about a past relationship and just thought “Why Lord?” Listen, taking a trip down memory lane can make you question your taste, decision-making ability, and whole mental state! I've been blown away all week with this notion that we, as humans, know what's best! In season, we pick an outfit, a relationship, or a job that we feel will surely satisfy our swag or desires --- only to come to the end of that season and realize that we didn't have a clue! READ MORE

23 Comments

I Got It!

11 Comments

I Got It!

How often do we make the decision in our life, "I'm gonna have to make this happen?!" There is no area where we deviate from this line of thinking. The moment we feel as if what we are desiring isn't happening fast enough or in the manner we want, we decide to take matters into our own hands. We go after that husband, having that baby, getting that money, or even arriving at the level that we feel the world deems as a success! Read More

11 Comments

31 Comments

I Celebrate Today!

For the past few days, the enemy has bombarded my internal space with every reason to give up on the things I fought hard to begin. He gets us in moments where we feel like we are failing as a wife, mother, daughter, and even in the area of helping to encourage others. We begin to ponder, "What makes me special?!" "Daddy, who am I anyway?!" "Do I have anything of value to give?!" Read More 

31 Comments

Comment

The Progress Within the Process!

We just finished a series at our church called "Tryouts!" The series was all about being brave enough to start trying and, in some cases, to try again! The timing of this message could not have been more right for me. I believe that this is also the case for many of you! We're almost at the close of the 1st quarter, and we're beginning to faint, to question, to doubt. Read More 

Comment

3 Comments

It BELONGS to You...

A few Sundays ago, during our worship service at Forward City Church, Pastor Trav made a statement while exhorting that has continued to empower me. He stated that God’s peace BELONGED to us! God’s freedom BELONGED to us. Immediately, the imagery of peace and freedom being likened to my children, whose hand I would hold tightly (out of a need to protect them) came to mind! They belong to me! How dangerous it is to take or mishandle something that BELONGS to me! Read More

 

3 Comments