Live, And Let Live!

Photo by Anna Shvets on Pexels.com

The wisdom of aging is that some of us come to a place where life takes on a more profound meaning that we hadn’t realized earlier. However, this isn’t true for everyone in the same age bracket; for some, it’s a perceptual state of being more of the same, only their physical appearance changes over time. The difference between the two is that although their approach and perception differ, that defining thread of circumstances creates similarity and familiarity between them through the aging process. Their susceptibility to health issues crosses every manmade barrier to affect both. It’s within that crossroads of those unknown that it benefits us to pause long enough to see that acceptance is a gift to ourselves and others. It alleviates wasted time and energy being critical of each other and putting up roadblocks to facilitate hindrances. No man can sin against another, none! Man can sin only against God. Once that known truth is received and accepted for what it is, relationships initiated will honor life. The reality becomes more evident in the processes of time and gets clearer as our steps slow down, our sight grows dim but expands our hearts to conclude. “Live and Let Live,” so harmony will prevail; our tomorrow is already decided by God. Peace!

Each Day Is A Gift!

Photo by Artem Saranin on Pexels.com

As images cascade through our minds of times and places we held dear, a deeper sense of purpose with directions becomes clearer as we look towards the future. Teachings from the Bible remind us, “Nothing just doesn’t happen!” Instead, every experience gained is a building block of something bigger and greater than oneself. And with time, a clearer understanding is achieved with direction, and what once was a puzzle is now understood. Here an awakening encouraged us in another chapter of our lives by showing us the way. 

 Each day is a gift, and that gift, at times, can be a challenge. However, this would be a hollow world without us in it. Therefore, let us remain aware of our role, place, and importance to the magical experience we know as life and living, as our dreams unfold and our impact makes the difference. Life would be without meaning if it were without you and me. So, there is always meaning in all of life’s occurrences. Once we can hold this truth like a banner as a reason to move forward, never lose hope, the motivation to believe, starting with believing in ourselves, “Nothing just doesn’t happen!” Whatever we think we are, we belong, which is why we are here in this vast experience with promises of a future. By believing in the possibilities yet to unfurl by the powers that cause us to be, the realization becomes apparent that the greatest change begins with us. When faith, purpose, and promises combine, their rippling effects form our footprints forever etched in time. I don’t know about you, but my hopes are that when my race is over, which it definitely will, there will be footprints that reflect a walk worth mentioning. Thanks for stopping by! Peace!

Bradley Beach, New Jersey. M. Delores

Points of Life!

There are periods in our lives having introspection about how we evolved throughout the years gives us an ah, ah moment. I call them ‘Points of life’ because those moments accumulatively create a total of who we are as individuals as they enlighten and empower us. As we go over each scenario, realizing the dynamics of their role and how they intersect our lives at different points gives us pause to analyze and actualize those events. However, although separate, each tangible imprint serves toward a bigger picture and unveils what we need to know in time, which provides us clarity. So, those “Points of Life” are events that link our functionality with presence in periods that help us advance, no matter if it seems inconsequential. They add direction with reason in our journey, and with patience, perseverance, and willingness to keep trying, those ‘Points of Life’ will serve us in the advent of time.

Masterpiece

Photo by Amina on Pexels.com

By

Sandra Jackson

Had to master my piece of life

Not anyone else’s, just mine, myself,

Oft we point our finger away from ourselves

When that finger is needed to repair, not denounce

Intricate issues I had to ponder

Like how I chose to worship my father,

Manmade beliefs had almost choked out

Joy I received from God at the start

Now hearing preaching is more like teaching

Not God’s direct voice through the one who is speaking,

Sure sometimes they can be heavenly inspired

But they’re also human, so verification is required

So many gray areas preached black and White

Opening up turmoil within one’s mind,

If the truth’s occupation is to make us free

Why does my offering determine if I get the key?

Love has to be life’s paintbrush

Not idiosyncrasies manmade and enforced,

Everyone telling me what life to lead

But without love, it’s just not a masterpiece!

Sandra Jackson is one of my favorite poets. She comes from a place of honesty without cowardice while practicing what she preaches. I met her several years ago at an event, and we stayed in touch via phone calls or text; meeting her left an impression that kept us engaged through the years. Sandra is like a ray of sunshine; her greatest gifts come from her heart. It’s important to acknowledge those like her; God knows they are our standards bearers. Thanks, Sandra, for your soul expression.

This Juncture of Understanding!

I am not simply faith driven; over my lifetime, I have seen how believing unfolds hidden desires in ways that leave me prostrate on the floor with gratitude to God. Let me fast forward; I’m a product of a culture steep in secrecy. Trained to believe everything that goes on in one’s life, no matter what, no one should know the truth because how others think of you should be colored by a narrative; even if false, that all’s well when your life is on fire. I am sure this isn’t uniquely my experience but that of countless others. We are all products of our environment.

I discredited that way of thinking several years ago after discovering that advancement revealed through scriptures led me to grow in the things of God. This revelation allows me to see through His eyes of love. On arriving at this juncture of understanding, it’s like a light goes on to show that real freedom can only be achieved where it matters most, and that is in our mind, the epicenter of our reasoning, and planning, where everything about perceptions and actions initiated. Therefore, arriving at that mile marker in life, “Change,” is like being unshackled from what could have seriously compromised my today. Complacency or indifference is far removed from embracing and harvesting the benefits that faith stirred through prayers and belief. I have found prayers, perseverance, and humility are powerful when aiming toward the things of God, which is our better self. I pray that whatever are your dreams or struggles, the God that handles mine will do the same for yours. So again, we approach another weekend with much to be grateful for, starting with being here still while many others aren’t. In our limitations, yet freedom to do as we choose, may we always aim for the light by first igniting the light in us. Sometimes, someone is awaiting us to show them the way; therefore, never minimize the importance of your input and influence. Enjoy and have a safe weekend. Thanks for stopping by. Peace!

Photo by Brady Knoll on Pexels.com

Stay Strong

The day yesterday started out sunny and hot, yet it was a beautiful day. By late afternoon, the clouds came in,  soon followed by thunder, and it began to rain as if the skies were wailing. As it rained in what seemed to be buckets, the wind picked up, and then it sounded like being pelted with peddles from the sky. I was frightened and concerned about structural damage to my home. Thank God there wasn’t any. That brief experience heightens my awareness with an acute sensitivity as to how fragile a state the world is in, and between nature’s wraths and man’s inhumanity to man, it’s time to pause. But, in halting, we might need to hit restart for the benefit of all of humanity. On seeing the devastation and losses of my neighbors in Kentucky caused by the floods and having experienced a short rain storm that shook me, I’m reminded that no one knows what the next hour holds, and neither do we about tomorrow. The people of Kentucky had no clue that their lives would become up-ended by such devastation. The authorities so far found thirty-seven bodies, and many are still unaccounted for due to several factors caused by the flood. However, one great thing about this country, and I speak as one who started the first twenty-two plus years of my life elsewhere, is that when it comes to citizens in crisis, Americans reach out and help with sincerity. So, as the people in the Appalachian mountains in Kentucky try pulling together whatever remains of their lives, I pray for strength and resilience, and may their future be better as they forge a new normal. Lives can never be replaced, but we can find courage for a better day. May your courage lightens your path. Stay strong!!

 

Change!

Photo by Anna Tarazevich on Pexels.com

Change is one of the hardest things for some of us, especially if we find comfort in what’s familiar. Yes, what we are accustomed to, even if it depleted us, we stay committed to whatever that may be because of fear of change. Fear we might venture into something unpredictable, and if we do, then what? Change can be unsettling because of the unknown quantities that it entails. Therefore, we know what to expect with whatever we’re into or have, whether they be good or bad. As a result, easily sliding into a rigid approach to life by viewing those approaches as consistency, which makes us laidback and side-step change—and unintentionally erect barriers that block progress without realizing being wardens of our self-imposed prisons. This blunt reality hits home for me earlier during a discussion with a family member about my embarking upon a life-altering change. As we converse that idiom, “Two heads are better than one,” let me come to see my truth through her advice. I also realized that as one who considers myself a realist, there were holes in my belief system, which energized me to change. Real and meaningful change isn’t easy, and it can be the hardest thing for us to do. However, when necessary, change must occur, and it’s like the birthing process, which can be painful while going through it, but after it’s over, the reward becomes fulfilling. And within those changes, freedom with validation makes life what we so often longed for and later expressed with joy and purpose. So, yes, what once seems intimidating now provides the path that makes life worthwhile and offers its ultimate, which is peace! What do you think?

We Belong!

Photo by Chiaroscuro on Pexels.com

In the illusion of those yesterdays, Greater You are, as you seem to draw nearer,

Eternally, You hovers over time,  past,  present, forever you remain,

You Never falter, You never fails, so strong, yet gentle, you hold us, dear;

Tremendous are your powers, yet, within our fragility, You tenderly guide us,

With Love, and outstretched arms, shield us; and offered up Your Son for us, a sacrifice,

Your Everlasting Love knows no boundaries and always shows us the way,

Gentle are You, Greater are You, sees us as your most valued treasure

In a breath’s reach–patiently, you wait to hear, “Saviour, we hear you when you call.”

Please save us before we fall; place your hands into ours on seeking your face,

It had been a long walk, and we believed we were so strong,

However, the realities of where we are-

And, where we seem to be heading seems wrong…

Oh, gentle Saviour; to you, we belong.                             

My Jewish Mother!

Photo by SHVETS production on Pexels.com

Several years ago, working privately in the nursing field, I met a woman named Esther, who has forever changed my life. Initially, I was her private nurse, but quickly, we became friends. We changed each other’s outlook as she was Jewish and came from the Holocaust experience, which made her the kind of woman you wanted to talk to when the chips were down, and I can be a talker when I believe I have something to say. Also, as one from the Black Experience, who studied my history, our exchanges were inspirational in their raw honesty. I was never intimidated by wealth or status; although she was on a different social and financial level than I, I saw her as an equal with years of wisdom I didn’t have. I was told right off the bat that she was called the iron lady, but as one who doesn’t allow the opinions of others to dictate my response or warp my view of others, I brushed that warning aside and got to know her. She was a wonderful woman but didn’t allow people to run circles around her, which they tried doing because she was older.

I smile affectionately on remembering my Jewish mother, her beauty, warmth, love of family, friends, life, and her country, America. I recalled a year into my employment; the diagnosis for her was fatal. On hearing the news, she was naturally frightened by the prospect of only having a few months remaining. Her children were all grown and doing well, and her grandchildren also were adults. She wanted to see at least one great-grandchild. She expressed her concern that she wouldn’t live long enough to see it happen, and naturally, I pushed back hard on that. I’m known to have what some call crazy faith. I immediately dismissed the doctor’s prognosis, reminding her he was a learned man, not God! How would he know for sure when someone would die? I encouraged her not to accept that, and after some very animated discussion with her, she relaxed, dismissing the idea of dying soon. For the next five years plus, her health improved with proper healthcare, nutrition, social activities, family support, and me as the daughter she met later in life. Our days became filled with laughter, hugs, and the occasional minor issues caused by simply being alive. She lived long enough to become a great-grandmother and even saw her great-grandchild learn how to walk.

 In the last month of her life, she asked me to take her to Barnes & Noble to purchase a book, which I found strange, although we didn’t know it would have been her last month. She usually reads only the newspaper, so why was she buying a book? I was confused but went along without belaboring the reason as to why. We got the book, and to my surprise, she gifted it to me with a lecture. “The Giving Tree” was the title of the book. She told me to be careful not to end in life like the story’s main character, who gave his all and left with nothing at the end. I understood what she wanted me to be aware of; that life can be cruel, and we need to be careful and not develop a Christlike complex in our choices or decisions.

I appreciated where she was in her thinking on observing me. However, I believe the essence of who we truly are isn’t up for grabs or negotiation. Material stuff changes with time, and when people think they’re shortchanging us, they are doing it to themselves. God knows everyone and has the first and last say about our lives. There’ll always be losses in life, but the greatest loss is that of the soul, which can only happen when we compromise our true essence of what makes us uniquely us. We can be in a room with people who has our name, and they might even share physical characteristics and cultural, social, and economic background; but that doesn’t make us the same. We are different through intrinsic qualities that sets us apart. Therefore, no one changes us unless we allow it.

My Jewish mother has been gone for quite some time, but the warmth and love she has given me remains. It is good to open our hearts to accept love no matter where or who it comes from because it might be what helps to show us the way in life. So, as I look back and look ahead with hope for the future, I pray when my race is over, there’ll be someone who will look back as I am doing now and find peace, joy, and appreciation that our lives crossed, and this is the best any of us can hope. Thanks for stopping by. Peace!

Philia Love

Photo by Mizuno K on Pexels.com

To love and be loved is one of the greatest experiences any of us could hope for. But, like everything else in life, love comes with its share of disappointments that I’m sure some of us are yet to recover from. Moreover, love comes to us differently; for some, it is complicated and can be intense. Nevertheless, even when we are at a disadvantage, having been touched by love, the prospect of it keeps us in its grasp. Now, let’s take a brief glimpse of Philia’s love from my perspective inside that of friendships.

As we are aware, love comes in different forms, such as Intimacy, Passion, and Commitment, and taking it further, there is Storage, Agape, Philia or Philae, and Self-love. These are also carried over into Romance, Platonic, Unrequited, Unconditional, Obsessive, and Conjugal love. I will speak briefly on Philia love, a love without romantic attraction between people who share the same values and respect for each other. I am not trained or have the authority on this subject matter; I only speak from my personal experiences; and I have been blessed through active exchanges, understanding with acceptance from women I’ve befriended for over thirty years. I have been blessed to forge relationships with some phenomenal women who I call sisters, my friends. My friends and I share similar ideals, we often laugh at the same jokes, and there is intense respect and admiration between these women and me but most of all, they are there for me through all of life’s seasons, which is essential in friendships. Real friendships are relationships that don’t critically evaluate our shortcomings but rather serve to strengthen us whenever or wherever we’re weak, and that I have in my friends. As a result, the emotional fulfillment friendship brings has a pivotal impact on who I am.

Therefore, by honoring the love friendship can bring to one’s life, let us call it for what it is when it enriches us, Philia love. And in its acknowledgment, we come to validate it. It shouldn’t matter what package love comes in; once it comes to us and it’s what we’d hope for, embraces it in the purity of another gift from God. I am blessed to be the recipient of such relationships, and my prayers for you are that you can rest assured in having this kind of life experience. As we enter this weekend, it may be time to reach out to a friend, letting them know how much they are appreciated. Have a safe and blessed weekend! Thanks for stopping by. Peace!!