To Yourself Be True!

Marjorie Delores

The philosopher Socrates from centuries ago encouraged us to “know ourselves.” Examine and understand who we are—and whoever does not know themself does not know anything,” he stated. While William Shakespeare’s play Hamlet reminded us, “Be true to yourself.” Several Bible scriptures also deal with the subject matter of knowing oneself. I chose to highlight Psalm 139: 14 KJV, which stated: “I will praise thee: for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvelous are thy works: and that my soul knows right well.” In this one verse, there is so much to garner from it. There have been ongoing efforts to self-actualize and know who we are since infancy. During the process, we make mistakes, learn and grow, and with an ever-present force influencing or steering us on a path, we aspire to reach our life’s purpose.

However, sometimes, other forces are set up to ensure our failure. This is why it is paramount that one must know oneself and know one’s core values, body, dreams, and likes and dislikes. Within this framework, we can cultivate the person we want to be and establish meaningful relationships with those who are like-minded. However, getting to this plateau sometimes isn’t an easy feat because of the structural settings we are a part of since birth; and If those settings are fractured or aren’t reflective of those core values we hold dear, then what? Denying oneself to please others doesn’t line up with the truth. The truth of who we are. So, at this juncture, hard choices have to be made that line up with reality, which begins with knowing yourself and being true to yourself. Sometimes, to stay true to yourself means shutting out destructive voices. At the end of the day, when you look in the mirror, who is looking back at you takes priority. We all are the product of our realities; however, in this vast expansion with innumerable opportunities and possibilities afforded us by our maker, we have the final call on what path we travel in life. Sometimes, getting to that place or station means traveling alone. Initially, it might seem daunting, but what’s the point of being surrounded by dreams crushers or those who are miserable with life and have rendered nothing but unhappiness? There comes a time that one has to be true to oneself and, by so doing, experience your best self. And maybe at that time and place can look back and pull up those perceived to be blinded to truth into seeing that life was meant to live in peace, contentment, and in the beauty it gives. Peace!

This is where I will be taking a long pause. To my extended family and friends, you won’t be hearing from me for a while. For those of you who have followed me these months, as a free spirit, I always come from a place where I’m comfortable. I am no trendsetter or follower, just a voice itching to be heard, which you’ve given me an ear over these many months. Thanks for the support, and I’ll be missing you and thinking of you in my absence; thank you for letting me believe this Island woman can be part of a broader conversation. Take care and stay safe until we meet here again. Here, from me to you; let it never be said I’ve never offered you flowers. God Bless you and your family!

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The Power Of Words!

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Lately, regularly, I enjoy reading poems by poets that have touched my life through the potency of their work, and Ms. Lyttle is one of those people. Earlier on a re-read of her anthology, the poem “This Thing Called Words” spoke to me the loudest about the power we have. “Purpose Within Every Promise,” the book from which I took this poem, reaches you wherever you are in its delivery. Her poetry speaks to its reader in a manner that isn’t simply reflective but awe-inspiring. Each line of this poem, “This Thing Called Words,” calls out to me in a way that makes me want to be more introspective and become deliberate assuring positive communications within my exchange. The art of communication can be verbal, one’s body language, or subliminal cues expressing how we feel; we always communicate even when we are silent. These cues give messages that set the tone for life’s outcomes, and Ms. Lyttle’s “This Thing Called Words” reminds us that our words are consequential, and their after-effects can set lives ablaze or create a harmony that empowers a nation. Peace!

This Thing Called Words

Words are like paint that stains the soul

Layer by layer, they create strongholds

Festered by Time, creating molds

Manifested in behaviors too strong to control

Building bridges, fences, and walls

Creating cities, both great and small

A city without light! That is subject to fall.

This thing called “words” is the creator of them all.

Through grace and truth, you’ll see the light

His foundation of love will be your delight

With words that heal, he will peel your soul

With gentle kisses that will make you whole

Who’ll come to know you’re his delight

Someone he caresses day and night

Your silent tears he’ll wipe away

The hidden scars of yesterday

Just trust in him, and he’ll heal your soul

And make your foundation genuinely whole.

By

Sophia Lyttle

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The Power of Positive Thinking!

Once again, I’m reminded of the power of positive thinking and how the universe responds in kind. Well, it has been proven again in the past twenty-four hours. Lately, there are days when I tend to be very optimistic about a positive change to some harsh realities; then, on a keener observation, that began to change. It’s like God; only you can change this; it looks hopeless. But, then, on reading the Bible, truth rings through that one cannot have faith and embrace doubt or fear. These cannot mix, and one is the absence of the other! So, I returned to that place of trust, and wow, the evidence of faith burst out all around me. Yesterday, my dear friends Sandra, Iris and I went to lunch. We have been doing this at intervals for years now. We enjoy each other’s company, so it’s always a good time. We always pay for our meals individually because, as retirees, money doesn’t come to us as it once did. Yesterday, Sandra picked up the tap for my lunch, which wasn’t expected of her. We had a great time together.

I saw her act of kindness as God speaking out loud that He is about to change things. Today, shopping at a large neighborhood department store chain, again, I’m reminded. On approaching the checkout line, there were only two people ahead, and the woman immediately ahead of me turned to look at me with concern upon my approach. Due to a pending knee replacement surgery, I am forced to use a motorized shopping cart. She may have thought I would bump into her with the shopping cart and cause her harm. Smiling at her, I assured her that I didn’t carry insurance for the shopping cart and that I wouldn’t be careless to cause anyone harm. In response, she moved into my space, offering to place my groceries on the conveyer counter by the cash register.

Smiling at her in appreciation, I accepted and noticed her and the Cashier exchanging smiles as she mumbled something to her. My things were being checked out along with hers. The Cashier smiled while bagging up my items separately, which the woman then placed on my card. I was speechless; seconds before she walked away, I expressed my appreciation and wished her God’s best. I’ve heard of people paying for things for others, but I had never had a stranger pay for my items. Again, I stated aloud, “God is up to something!” It is so good to recognize God in the good and bad. I am grateful that He doesn’t fluctuate in His emotions like me because I would be up a creek without a paddle. There is so much good around us; it’s up to us to see them. Peace!

BY Marjorie Delores

Nothing To Lose!

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 We might not realize it, but life often unfolds in similar patterns for some of us, which sometimes throws us off guard. Interestingly, sometimes the similarities are so striking in comparison that it makes you wonder, “What?” Maybe it is a way for the cosmos to remind us of our commonalities through those similarities. That the things we believe separate us when in reality, are what resonate with our sameness. This is why it is a loss when we focus on trivialities; it’s wasted energy and time, and time is our most valued commodity. Time lost cannot be regained, and in that time, the world moves on and what eats away at us affects no one but us. Greeting each day with the resolve that things will work out, no matter their challenges, are rewarding because things usually do. There is power and progress within a positive outlook; this is why we look forward to the break of day, the darkness dissipates, and the light shows us the way. Our intrinsic force creates a rhythm to our lives that drives us towards our destiny, like a quiet voice it urges us on. Although our paths may be disrupted by detours, setups, or setbacks, the destination clearly awaits, and no one can take our place, which God promised. So even when it feels like birthing pain or passing kidney stones while getting there, staying the course should be a given. There are no ifs or buts about winning;  because winners never lose! Win, we shall! Therefore, with this said, moving constitutes progress, so let us keep it moving, no matter how small a step. It doesn’t matter if it’s one step at a time; that’s all it takes to finish well.

Being here and having your support have been empowering. This Saturday will be my last post; I will be offline. I am doing a medical procedure that is essential for my health, regrettable the first month after the surgery, I will be offline. In my absence, I pray you and your loved ones will remain safe, and soul expression will be a part of who you are and what you do. I will be here for another three days and then a long pause, my friends take care and remember, stay in the light.  

Within Limitations!

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The elements that form meaning in life are dictated by several factors, most of which are still a mystery. Despite the science, quantum physics, technology, and the rest of the educated explanations offered, those factors have us searching, learning, and still haven’t fully unlocked life’s mystery. My curiosity and the need to better grasp the scope of man’s strength within limitations from the eyes of the un-bored, which we are accidents of whom we ended up with as parents, for me, is a distinctive marker to our limitation. There lies the essence of our frailty, as accidents of birth even for those who are planned. Not one baby was given a choice as to who will parent them. If we had, it would be beyond dispute that humanity’s control is infinite because it began at conception and finalized beyond birth! However, we don’t get a say beforehand who we will share DNA with; that choice lies in the Hands of the Creator of life, God! What is my point?! In observance of the ignorance of self-importance, inflated egos, and blatant arrogance toward the proof of who is and is in charge of births and deaths verified by Him, it is foolish to believe anyone has the upper hand in life and is exempt from life’s perils.

 Whenever God is minimized or treated as an afterthought, it’s beyond comprehension; how could one place themselves at odds with the power that causes one to be? On the other hand, once one has lived and truly done so by experiencing life fully and seeing the constant change it brings, it’s hard not to realize that plans with the utmost consideration sometimes come undone, and there lies proof that nothing is finite except death. At this intersection of life, when death appears, humanity tends to see God clearer. So, these two points, one which introduces life while the other transcends it to the spiritual realm, show that this ultimate mystery starts and ends with God! Yes, life does!

Taken by Marjorie Delores

They Are Special!

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It is so easy to become pessimistic in today’s climate of uncertainties’ within its rapid change, some of which leaves us gasping for breath when we see the senseless cruelties and destruction that have become commonplace. However, despite this, some unsung heroes give of themselves daily without any hidden agendas and are the difference towards the balance that enriches our lives. These people are everywhere; they are our friends, family, neighbors, and people we encounter during brief exchanges. Their presence and impact are resources of goodness we embrace and briefly celebrate through gratitude upon receipt; yes, through our thank yous’ during times of acknowledgment.

We need to lift them up even more as they do us. So today, I endeavor to highlight these forces for good—God’s footsoldiers for assuring His purpose through given goodness. I am sure many of us know such people but maybe have gotten caught up in the daily grind of life, therefore, unwittingly glossing over their importance or ignoring the good they brought to our lives. So, as I embarked upon another transitional period in my life, reflecting on the gift of kindness and goodness I’ve enjoyed throughout these many years by those I call God’s foot soldiers for good, I, too, am grateful to every one of those who made a difference.

Therefore, in recognition, although their names are missing, I have expressed my gratitude privately and encourage you to do the same in acknowledging those you know in whatever manner you deem fit, as long as they come to know that what they’ve done is appreciated. Their efforts will be rewarded within God’s time. One of the most effective tools we have, without a price tag, is the gift of speech. Using the right words can effectively sway the tides of change to the service of all involved. Therefore, this method of expression, by whatever means chosen, should be applied to let those who have blessed our lives know how special they are and that we are thankful for what they brought to our lives—what a wonderful way to begin our week than to tell someone today that they are special. Thanks for visiting, and stay in the light! Peace!

The End Of An Era!

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Yesterday was the end of an era with the death of Queen Elizabeth of England as we know it for over seventy years. At the announcement of her passing, a double rainbow appeared over Buckingham Palace. I was struck by the timing of the appearance of a double rainbow and sought meaning through the scriptures. The Bible gives insight into the importance of all of life, including the significance of rainbows, which symbolize God’s mercies.

Genesis 8:2 speaks about God’s judgment being restrained after the great flood of Noah’s Ark, which occurrences played a pivotal role in furthering God’s plan for humanity. After the rain had stopped and the flood water receded, a rainbow appeared, a sign that life for those saved was assured.

Genesis 9: 12 further explains, “And God said, this is the token of the covenant I make between you and me and every living creature with you, for perpetual generations.” The rainbows’ appearance was a reminder of that covenant between God and humanity; promises made will be fulfilled.

 The book of Revelation further gives added insight into the varying dimensions of God’s power within his beauty and continued assurance of his covenant; 4: 3 states, “And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.” The rainbow is a symbol of God’s faithfulness and mercy, and may the people of England and all over the world who are mourning the loss of Queen Elizabeth find comfort knowing God is ever-present and He is a comforter. Soul Expression extends condolences and support in this time of grieving, and may your strength be renewed within the time of acceptance with heightened purpose. God Bless you all! Soul Expression

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Effective Maintenance!

The freedom of ownership is the ability to do as one pleases with the content you own. Therefore here I go again with one of my favorite poems. In the late nineties, while working at a medical facility in Hillsborough County, Florida, one day while doing patient care, this poem came to me. Approaching the nurses’ station, I sat there for about ten minutes and jotted this down. Over the years, I retweak and republished it. It seems to have deepened throughout the years since I wrote it in its meaning. In my attempt to capture the complexities within my exchanges and the ever-present bleaker side of Life, it would be safe to think that by acknowledging the reality that confronts and at times constraints us, an emotional adeptness to whatever comes our way stirs us. However, that is easier said and done because most of us are creatures of habits and with that comes set expectations. Comfortability comes with familiarity, which can hamper real change.

The fragile balance of Life                                                                                             

It can become filled with complexities

Which amaze, scare, entice, or repulse

However, its mystery never ends to be in our grasp,

In this fragile balance of Life.

The fragile balance of Life sometimes teaches us

how to touch.

However, knowing well enough not to hold

Onto that brief warmth of a touch,

An imprint of beautiful possibilities yet fleeting

emotions

All trapped in the fragile balance of Life;

The delicate balance of Life it’s an elixir of good and evil,

Happy or sad easily reflected in the beauty of a

smile

Or the horror of anger that has gone wild

Each creating reasons and evoking wonders,

All within the fragile balance of Life.

In a different mindset, those of us analyzing and searching for a better understanding of the whys, what’s, and how’s of Life. We tend to look inward before transitioning outwardly to arrive at acceptable answers whenever we can. However,  as we seek a better understanding of Life’s outcomes within the why’s, how can we best process and respond effectively to securing what serves the greater good? As spiritual beings having a physical experience, each moment serves as a new path toward a more in-depth understanding. Interestingly, when we believe we know whatever we think is concrete, time and situations can turn things on their heads in a second. As time and Life teach us, each minute or hour is all a mystery ever unfolding. Yes, Life can be like a steady stream, but the unknown can disrupt that flow without warning. Therefore, it is practical to acknowledge God’s mastery of all things Life, and we are simply workers whose work begins first with serving God, self, and others. There is no doubt that Life is fragile, but a balance can lead to its effective maintenance when it pivots on what causes us to be, which is God. Peace!

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Are Patterns Indicators?

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Patterns are perceived to be indicators of many of life’s outcomes. Therefore, it would be safe to say life results are from practices followed or embraced, leading to an expected outcome. Such as a child who loves books and learning, it would be safe to assume that they are slated for success. However, this isn’t always the case. So, it’s almost impossible to conclusively highlight a constant regarding patterns within the scope of human conditions. We are everchanging.

Patterns are most impactful on the micro level, beginning with formed or learned beliefs within families and culture and on a larger scale within the environment and practicing faiths. As a result, we develop opinions about distinctive groups of people, places, or individuals based on some known norms and shared practices observed. Does this make us that are making these assessments biased, prejudiced, or even judgmental? Maybe, or maybe not? It depends on what the motives are and from what vantage point of our approach. In these hypersensitive times, it’s easy to believe life only comes in shades of gray, lighter and darker gray, instead of the limitless possibilities around us, which are unfolding within the plans of God. So, denial and scapegoating drenched in yesterday’s imperfections and today’s probabilities overshadow or make us lose sight of the good within us. When one focuses on seeing what is rather than what could be, errors are unavoidable, and the outcome erects a rigid way of thinking that leads to unfortunate results. We are not an accident of nature but beautifully made in the image of God’s love.

The mind is the most powerful tool available to us. Our thoughts shape one’s behavior, and behaviors manifest into deeds, and those deeds can set the course of our lives on a trajectory of success or on a downward spiral. Therefore, within the fluidity of life from creation to the present, there is no real constant but God. Everything changes but God! Once this truth of life can be understood and accepted, perceptions will easily clarify that we are all flawed beings, favored by God and doing our best with what we know. Therefore, the only pattern of life that is ever constant, it’s the love of God, even when we fail to acknowledge Him. Life is everchanging, and we are God’s given Life, formed by His love! Peace!

Having To Repeat The Process!

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Have you ever laughed so hard at yourself that you feel like you are about to lose consciousness? For a split second, that was how I felt yesterday. I guess that’s the highlight of my Labor Day but what I took away from the experience is we are forever learning, no matter the age or circumstances. Well, friends, I’ll take you to the beginning. Several weeks ago, I went through a lot of fabric I’ve accumulated over the years and decided yesterday to use two pieces to make a reversible bag. A large bag, ideal for food shopping. I had made one two months earlier, for the first time, but that came with instructions and the material already cut out in pieces by my friend Joyce. So I followed her instructions, making the bag easily.

Déjà vu, yesterday, I went, thinking that repeating that process shouldn’t be that hard, only this time, I had to go through all the steps without a pattern. So, I cut out the bag’s shape without any issues. Immediately after, I proceeded to stitch the pieces together. Now, remember that it is supposed to be a reversible bag which means there is a technique to sew the pieces together for that desired effect. Initially, I briefly considered looking at tutorials on reversible bags before cutting and stitching the pieces. But, then, I thought, I got this; how difficult could it be?!

Therefore, stitched eighty percent of the bag before deciding to look at what I’d done thus far. As I pulled the parts to form into what I thought I had made, about ten minutes after pulling and turning the fabrics, there was a shape but not what I was aiming for! It was a cloth saddle! Yes, a cloth saddle, and I wasn’t thinking about horses and knowing them only through media, books, or farmlands I’ve driven past.
There are horses, and there are a-s-s-e-s; of which I felt like the latter. I fell out laughing at myself so hard on seeing the mess I made. I thought I should have had a life alert, feeling like I was sinking into darkness. Being alone, I relaxed against the chair as I gained control of the situation. I could hear my family and friends singing, cum-by-yah my Lord, and my epitaph being read, here lies, Marjorie, a woman who loves life and laughter, but laughter got the better of her, and here lies that happy soul.” That whole experience taught me that I am forever learning, and the learning process takes extra effort to get things right. If not, not only will errors be made, but time will be lost by having to repeat the same process again.  

Thanks for stopping by, and I pray this week will be safe and favorable for you and yours. Peace!!