Friday, 29 January 2016

ALL in- Half full or half empty, what do you see?

And when you're up you're up, 
and when your down, you're down
and when you're only half way up
you're neither up nor down...

That half way place- that stuck in the middle place- that limbo place- that place where you are neither up nor down place.....that's a iffy place, because things can go either way...really fast.

not too hot
not too cold...
only half way there..
neither up nor down

I feel like I am right there. I feel like this blog is there. I feel like January is there. Churning out fresh content twice a week while having a full time all consuming job, being a full time single mom and trying to be a woman seeking out and walking in her purpose can get overwhelming. You can get to that place where you believe you are climbing the ladder and just get ... half way up.

What good is half way up anyways? It's just as good as half way down for me. You are not where you started, I get that, but at half way up, you can still see the ground, you can still see all the rubble, you are close enough that you can even still smell it. Half way up? Half way up is like getting stuck in a comfortable place, it's like you start thinking- I'm not where I started, so I'm much better off. I made changes, I made improvements. I lifted off the ground and that's great. I'm half way up!

Well you know what...for me...

When you're up, you're up
When you're down, you're down
and when you're only half way up
you're neither up nor down

Make your drink count- drink living water

I'm going with God on this one...lukewarn, well it's not making any sense....seriously.
If you're going to go for it- GO ALL IN already! Just climb all the way up and just go. Doesn't matter how you look on the half full or half empty......there is space to be filled up..go for overflow while you're at it.

Why just feel safe in a boat when you can walk on water?
why settle for being a great speaker when your words can raise the dead?
why write just a blog when it's in you to write a book?
why help one child when you can heal a nation?
why rejoice when you are happy when you should be so filled with rejoicing it spills over into everyone you meet?

Speak Lord, your servant heareth. I'm speaking to myself..if this is for somebody- it's for me!

I could be wrong. I could be seeing it all wrong.

Or maybe I just now got it. I've always been called a pessimist, because I didn't see this glass as half full...but honestly, I like a full glass, a full plate and I have the hips to prove if I, if we, could only apply it to every aspect of our lives...and go for broke...just get hot! red hot! fired up! for Him!

If only....
but we sit in pews
with hands neatly clasped
for fear of eyebrows raised
for fear of whispers and stares
even for fear that if we shout 
and rock our head all about
If we praise and shout Hallelujah
and the walls come tumbling down
that not only people will see us...
We Will See Ourselves
and worse still...
God Will See Us.....Yes...God

We run, we hide, only from him.
We go in great big circles, still
just to come back right where we started
back to the ground...
that was so near to that half- way thrill

teach me Lord to leave half way 
let me go ALL the way 
for you gave ALL your life to set me free
and half way there was never your plan for me.

Revelation is not a book of the Bible I like to read, truth is, I don't understand it much but this one thing, I did...for this one post.

Revelation 3:16 "So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth."

Verse 15 ...says..."I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot."

And when you're up , you're up
and when you're down, you're down
and when you're only half way up
you're neither up nor down

Even nursery rhymes agree with Him.

Excerpts from the poem "The Noble Duke of York "adapted by Judy and David Gershan

Wednesday, 27 January 2016


To say January has been lackluster would be an understatement! I'm not 'feeling' January this year, it doesn't have that crisp clean smell that new things have. It's almost like that first time you had to try beets or spinach or broccoli...its been 'meh'

Just 'meh'.

How many of us feel like that sometimes?
Then because we are Christians we start feeling bad for feeling bad for we know that we should be feeling 'good'- ALL THE TIME!

That attitude of gratitude mantra - that be grateful for life, freedom and God's provision and blessings mantra. That....yes that, just that should be enough to make you happy...ALL THE TIME!

I watched the movie ( I'm using this term loosely now) Inside Out just recently, and my mind went entirely crazy with excitement at how incredibly well thought out and insightful this cartoon was. And like most 'over thinkers' I took it all in.

The message? No one can be all happy all the time, there is sadness, and anger, and pain that balances us all out to makes the human experience...well...human.

Is it possible or even healthy to be happy ALL THE TIME?

Philippians 4: 4 Rejoice in the Lord ALWAYS: and again I say, Rejoice.

Apparently, the answer to my question is.............ALWAYS..a yes! If God said it- I believe it!
YOU can start over

So how does one transfer that ALWAYS into every mundane day? ............ Rejoice.

Philippians 4:6 Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication let your requests be made unto God. 7 And the peace that passeth  ALL understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.11 Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content.19 But my God shall supply ALL my need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

And so it is, those days, those weeks, that January when you felt disconnected and discontent, there is ALWAYS a reason to Rejoice, to be happy to be content. So tomorrow, when I go through my final January days, I will remember the word...ALWAYS and will rejoice.

I will tell you what happens, when I renew my mind into an attitude of rejoicing ALWAYS in ALL ways.

Related Reading: Philippians 4

Friday, 22 January 2016

Butterfly kisses and sacrifice

No, I have not abandoned my blog! I had no internet connection at home for a few weeks ( insert jaw drop here...) and I lived to tell the story! I certainly missed not sharing and I did feel guilty, especially on my posting days - Wednesdays and Fridays, but I do believe I am back in business.

Over my hiatus, I observed many things, I had many ideas for articles but in the hustle and bustle that is life, I managed to write down none and remember only a few. This one thing stuck.

All our caterpillar moments lead to wings

When I was a little girl, I loved butterflies. I would come out into the garden with my little plaits, wait on them to perch ever so gracefully on a flower and put their wings together as they became lost in nectar heaven; then I would strike! That's when I would  lift them up and put them in my jar and close the lid. I would rub my index finger in a circle on my thumb, feeling the fuzz that made the beautiful pattern that drew me in, then I sat.  I watched. I watched the thing of beauty die. At my hands. 

I remembered my mummy told me to pierce holes in the top of the lid, so the poor things could breathe, I thought, oh yes!...that's my flaw in design. I pierced holes. I caught butterflies ever so skillfully. Butterflies still died. I'm not sure if it was the trauma of all that butterfly death, but I soon lost interest in catching butterflies.

I had a conversation with a gentleman once about caterpillars and a book I've been trying to read for about 2 years now - If Caterpillars can Fly So Can I by Alvin Day. We didn't talk much about the book - he just said - Caterpillars can't fly! I disagreed. Caterpillars were born to fly, they were made to fly, operating on the single premise that, the caterpillar will eventually become a butterfly- who was born to fly...

"It doesn't matter what you see now, can you see His glory?" ( I Know Who I am by Sinach) 

The gentleman, well, he didn't get it, he was being literal, and caterpillars only crawl and eat leaves- and they, well, they have no visible wings.

Just last week, I went to pick my daughter up at school and she said all excitedly,
" Mummy! The caterpillars are back!" " So many of them, and the children are killing them and squashing them."

 Those caterpillars won't fly. It took me back to my butterfly catching days. They, because of me- wouldn't fly either.

 Then she showed me, probably what were hundreds of caterpillars under a long stretch of wall at school. Caterpillars all huddled together, all in varying stages of metamorphosis. It gave me pause, I had never seen that before, I was more impressed with butterfly wings. Then I went to pick up my other daughter, and their seating area had all but been abandoned because the caterpillars had taken over their Lignum Vitae tree, Jamaica's National flower.

 It was time for pale yellow butterflies to spread their wings.

A few times a year in Jamaica, there are a few days filled with tiny pale yellow butterflies, (Krigonia lyside) happily flying around, and before you know it; they all but disappear. It happens, this year I saw, just because my eyes were open.

As I looked at the chrysalis at my daughter's school, I had a thought, these butterflies, these specific tiny ones go through four different stages, just to live for a few days, some, mere hours, others- almost seems- counter-productive. But is it? 

Can caterpillars really fly? - Technically- No
Do caterpillars have wings? - Scientifically- No

But.....something happens inside that chrysalis, something happens when that caterpillar hangs upside down on it's head. It makes wings. Wings that were 'never' there before and as I watched a time elapse video of a caterpillar's metamorphosis, my daughter started watching too, she said..
"I don't see any changes though."
 But I did, they were subtle, almost invisible. Towards the end,when the chrysalis changed shape and got fatter, she then said, 
"Oh, I see the changes now."

Changes start ever so small, sometimes even when it is in us, we tend to overlook or disregard them, looking instead, at the bigger, more visible flaws.

.....All I require for life, God has given me, and I know who I am ( I Know Who I am- Sinach)

2 Peter 1:3 "According as his divine power hath given us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of him that hath called us to glory and virtue." 

ALL I require for life...............LIFE.............I have been given. It means that I can make this life make sense. It means I can make the mundane tasks, the fiery darts, the jars that prevent wings from spreading metamorphis into a beautiful work of art that only a master potter could envision. You see, the truth is, His creation, it speaks to us. The caterpillar hangs upside down to change into it's finest hour; but, when things are toppled upside down, we panic, we grow weary, we get frantic,we curse at the master potter. For we can not see. We can not see the beauty in the caterpillar moments. That ugly, creepy crawly, leaf eating, plant destroying, garden wrecking, school bench taking-over caterpillar, is the same one that births those beautiful butterflies that we chase after as little children, and put them in glass jars, just so we can have them, albeit selfishly for ourselves. They get all the glory, and if they came by my house when I was a child...unfortunately, they got some of the pain too. 

I say this to say...the process, is worth the journey. 

Hang upside down and embrace the change, because your wings are in those upside down, topsy turvy days. Those days that you cry, those days that only you can see your change, just keep hanging upside down. God's got you covered, in this stage and the next. My daughter, she told me so too. She sprightly said'
 " Mummy, you know when birds see those butterfly wings what they see?"
 " Dinner perhaps?"  I thought but never said;
Then she says, " They see something that tastes bad, the colours (yellow) on the butterflies tell birds that they taste bad, so they won't eat them, but it's not really true, they taste good."
"How do you know? Have you ever tasted butterfly wings?" - that, I said....
We both laughed...."Muuuuuummmyyyy....I could never taste that!"

And do you see our Bible in action? ALL, I require for life, God has given, even the butterflies, so why not I? Why on earth do we doubt him?

And on that matter of a butterfly's lifespan? That question I asked myself, is it all worth it?

If you have ever seen these little pale yellow butterflies in motion, you would know that it most definitely is. They do not move with butterfly grace, they do not have all the patterns and sequence of the ones we normally admire, but they have all they require for their short lives.

They huddle together in caterpillar families, they go through changes together, and when their crowning moment finally comes, they fly together so rapidly and succinctly that it makes a yellow wave of joy fill your heart, at the wonderment that it must be to fly, to spread your wings, to live your purpose, to do what you were born to do..even if it is for just a moment in time. 

Afterall, when we count up our years, isn't it all just a moment?

Psalm 90:4 For a thousand years in thy sight are but as yesterday, when it is past, and as a watch in the night. 12 So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom.

What changes are you going through this new year? Will you embrace the change and see it as a means to your end?

Readings : 1 Peter and 2 Peter

                                                I know who I AM by Sinach

Wednesday, 6 January 2016

Stay connected

I'm not feeling it yet. The newness of the new year. That umph you get at the beginning of the new year to be fearless and at least start that new thing, at least for that first two weeks! My mind isn't cooperating and neither is my Wifi connection - I had to be jumping through hoops just to get this post up.

That tired feeling, that lack of umph feeling, that frustrating feeling that takes you over when you have internet connectivity problems feeling- it's telling you something.

This new year, I signed up for a bible plan- again!  Last year I signed up and I didn't finish - again. This time I came across a 90 day plan. Read the Bible in 90 days- Yes- 3 months! What made me think I could do that? I was to do in 90 days what I couldn't do in 365? 6 days in - and I'm 6 days behind! See what I mean about not feeling that new year umph?

As for my 40 by 40 campaign, well...I'm 6 days behind on that too.


I'm not sure I know entirely, but I'm sure it has something to do with that pesky Bible plan. I'm sure it has to do with a renewal of the mind and not a renewal of the year. I feel disconnected, even though I am trying to be totally connected.

Stay connected to the source................

The trick is not in renewing a bible plan, or your gym membership but renewing the mind for Psalm 119:150 says "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path."

So, I hope to have a better connection than my internet .............

Friday, 1 January 2016

Launch out into the deep

Cheers to the weekend! It's a Friday. The Friday that ended 365 days and got us started again at 1. Day 1. Blank leaf. Blank Page. Blank Book. Beginning. Enough with the new year's cliches right?

I have seen a push back this year on the 'resolutions'. People instead coining the newest 'catch words' and revolutions. Whatever you want to call it, however you want to frame it - a new year brings hope, and possibilities for change, lasting change. And change...change can be a very scary thing.

Change cause you to do a few things...reflect, review, revisit, in short - look back. As we look back on the year past, just mere hours ago, it is tempting to revel in any successes we might have had or revert to old habits because of apparent failures; for we are but humans, and life events can cause us to praise or blame - self.

One event happened that caused me to look back on a lifetime of scars and the enemy said 'stay there'

Change can cause you to have apprehension, fear, uncertainty, and in short cause you to become paralyzed. 'Stay there.' For people who had a great 2015, a new year isn't so scary, because they welcome opportunities to have an even better year. For the rest of us whose year was characterized by disappointment, uncertainty, pain and even growth, we are - fearful. Questions flood in, fools rush in and we think of a new year with trepidation; one day at a time becomes 366 days that unravel like dried up roses from a bouquet. We try nothing, we do nothing, we dare not rock the boat, less it topples over. We 'stay there'  and finish out the year - hopefully.

Change can cause you to make a plan, resolutions, revolutions, solutions, in short change can cause - action. Last year, I had a plan, I got a board, I decorated it, I titled it my 'Vision Board', it was to have my visions clearly stated in print and pictures. I was to accomplish them all by the end of 2015. Thing was my plan and as luck would have it - I never put a single 'vision' on it. I meant it to look absolutely perfect- so I was waiting to find the perfect pictures, and I wanted to cut out letters to make the words- I thought it would look artsy. Perfectionism and procrastination got the better of the 'Vision Board.' At year's end - I wasn't sorry. In January when I designed it in my mind, most of what took place in the year wasn't on it - including this blog. Man's best laid plans, often go awry- thank heavens for that!

Change can cause you to change. Do a total 360! It's a new year, change is good, so therefore I must change. Change my hair, change my style, change my outlook, change my mind about being kind.

Looking back isn't bad, getting stuck in your past is. I think it's healthy to look back, to see how far you have come. It can help us to see God's hand connecting the dots of our haphazardly ordered life. Looking back can make us grateful for God's grace and his mercy. Look back but for a moment.

Feel the fear, feel that heavy, sinking feeling in the pit of your chest. Breathe slowly. Repeat. Isn't it unfair that we can't see or predict even what's around the bend? It makes you feel so helpless, but yet in a way, it's the best thing that could ever happen to us! During all the Christmas messages, Isaiah 9:6-7 was on repeat ......and the government shall be upon his shoulders.... spoke to me- and I thought - "well that's a heavy load; that is a burden I would not want to carry." In Jamaica, we sometimes describe a person who looks sad or distressed like this:-  'dem a ack like the whirl deh pon dem shoulda' transalation - they are acting like the world is on their shoulder.
If I knew everything that would happen in my life, the good, the bad and the ugly, I know I'd be running around like a chicken without a head, trying to out a fire here, or to extend a happy moment or to prevent any sadness anywhere, that I would soon be so burdened and be fearful and paralyzed, having my world upon my shoulders. A scary thought! Feel the fear?....You don't have to!

Plan! Nehemiah had a plan. I. am. not the best planner. Last year I'm sure I said, I'm not a planner at all- but I'm getting there- slowly- but surely. It is always good to have a plan, God is a planner and if I am to be more like him, I also need to have a systematic way of achieving my goals but - my plans need to not just be systematic but in sync. In sync with God's purpose for my life. For I do not have time to be like mouse and men!

Change just to change? That reminds me of me, when I'm going out! I know I am not the only one to start off with an outfit, try on three others, only to return to the original outfit. Find your purpose - stick to it! Different outfits might change your mood but it certainly doesn't change the heart of you, the core of you- the purpose in you.

Change should cause you to surrender. Fullstop.
Change. lasting change, that causes renewal, revitalization; that change that makes ALL things new. That change - it never, ever says "stay there." Stay at a place that scarred you. Stay at a place that causes you pain. Stay at a place and be afraid. Stay at a place and never grow. Stay at place and keep changing things that don't matter. Stay here.

Instead - lasting change says - Go - Luke 5: 4.. Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught. Lasting change asks you to take a deep breath, feel the fear but TRUST God's plan, surrender and GO.

Our response is usually -
"I don't know how"
"I'm afraid"
"I prefer to stay here"
"I'm not sure if it's you Lord"
"This is not my plan"
"I have been doing it this way though"
"I can't"

And then 365 days go by and we look back and wonder where the year went. We look back, many of us pleased at the direction our year took- our goals were met, our lives unfolded just the way we planned. Others, will look back with disappointed eyes and be glad 365 + 1 are in the bag, so they get to start a fresh! Start a change.

5 And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net.

Master we have toiled all night and have taken nothing - Lord, I have done it my way all this time, and really have gained nothing at all; everything that I have tried to the best of my own knowledge, skills and plans have amounted to nothing I can use to make a living from. Nevertheless - surrender!
at thy word- with your guidance, grace, mercy, PLAN, I will let down my net- I will Go out and do what I have been doing, with the same tools I used before, but not with my own knowledge, skill, strength or PLAN but yours oh Lord and I will see what happens!

6 And when they had this done, they enclosed a great multitude of fishes; and their net brake.

And that is how, I suspect, you drink from your saucer, for your cup has overflowed.

Happy New Year - 2016