Do you believe?

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I believe in one God, the Father Almighty

I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the giver of life

I believe in the existence and efficacy of the intercession of His most Blessed mother, Mary

I believe in the angels and in the saints

I believe in resurrection after death

I believe in life everlasting in God’s presence

I believe in the power of Jesus to heal and to save, to turn impossibilities around, to make a way there is clearly none.

I believe in the power of God’s mercy, flowing freely for anyone and everyone.

I believe that God can do all things, and that He is reaching out to you right now through this medium, asking for your hand in friendship. Receive Him today and do whatever He tells you. He is all powerful, all good, all knowing and all gracious. There is nowhere else you would rather be, trust me.

I am a believer, are you?

TO DO : Watch the movie: God’s not dead (to reaffirm your faith as a believer or stir it up if you doubt)

DAILY MANTRA : “What no one ever saw or heard, what no one ever thought could happen, is the very thing God prepared for those who love Him” (1 Corinthians 2:9)

 

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Your positive superpower…

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I have had an amazing past couple of weeks (of course that would mean I did things the world would call exciting right?) and even now I still feel a surge of energy coursing through my body as I put down these words. I have been genuinely happy and healthy and I can confidently say that my life is perfect (I promise, I’ll tell you why).

It would seem as though being happy is a state of mind, just like being angry or feeling lonely, but I would like to think that being happy is a decision. What this typically means is that I could be in the middle of a terrible situation but decide keep my state of mind on happiness (would sound ridiculous to the pessimists but it is true). I could be sick or hurt by a trusted friend, lover or family member and still choose happiness, in other words, I could create my perfect life out of the imperfections that exist around me. Ever since I found that source of power, I have held on to it and now I am eager to share it with everyone (don’t be surprised if it comes up in my future posts, it is that important).

Stay positive! Yes, I said so! There is so much to life than all the problems we encounter and even the ones we create for ourselves unknowingly (we do that a lot). A happy person feels more alive, and seems to have everything going  good for them (this is because the energy we emit into the universe always manifests itself and comes back to us as our hearts’ desire, therefore emitting negative energy brings back negative things and vice versa). When you do not let worry and anger get the best of you, you can focus on things that are truly important to you, the most being living a fulfilled life in any capacity you desire. Notice how “angry” people never attract for themselves anything good!

Let it be known,that happy people do not necessarily have all the “goodies” of this world, but what they have is far more than that: gratitude and love, the two important things that eventually bring all good things to them. Plus, isn’t having to close your eyes and have a good night’s worry free sleep something to crave and be thankful for? I suppose so. Those material things that get you worked up and bitter are temporary, and they too will become obsolete. In the end you are all you have and you must make the most of the precious life that God has given you. You must learn to live!

In the end, the past is past. Let all that has happened to you in the past be left behind (I know it hurts, trust me I have been there, but you must let go). Decide for yourself that you will be the best version of yourself that you have ever been.Take charge of your mind and send those negative thoughts on their way whenever they come knocking (yes, you are more powerful than you can imagine). Be willing to “walk through the valley of the shadow of death” with a smile on your face and joy in your heart. Trust me, all the good days are coming around again!

TO DO : Everyday, write a list of things that you are grateful for and say thank you.

DAILY MANTRA : What I have now was once among the things I hoped for.

Stop Trying!

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I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to sound rude there but the urgency of that title required me to use the said punctuation mark plus we do this so much it makes me want to scream (I’m very calm now, I promise).

Sometimes, our problem is not that we are inadequate or just plain unlucky, or that life is too hard or that people are too difficult. Sometimes, our problem is that we try too hard! (I’ll explain, don’t worry). We enjoy being in control (women, yes we do), we love to keep tabs on every situation and plan everything to the last detail. We love to check, double check and still attempt to fix what isn’t broken (most of the time we do it unconsciously and that’s not such a bad thing) but the problem with this is we fail to see how it adversely affects the people around us, including ourselves.

Women are such wonderful creatures: emotional, intelligent, strong, resilient (I could go on and on). We are simply amazing which is why we believe that we can take on everything and anything. True as that may be, more often than not we lose sight of what’s really important: truly loving ourselves and accepting that just like life, people are not perfect and really do not have to be. A good case study is that of relationships and how we all desire (wait for it)…”the perfect man.”

Hmm… the perfect man is every woman’s dream, matter of fact, most of us started creating him in our heads right from our childhood. He was the total package: a chiseled body (for those romance novel addicts and people generally who are into that type of thing), perfect hair, smart, funny, loyal, good but with the “bad boy” attitude amongst other “incredible” things. We believed that we didn’t have to do anything to deserve him, but that he would simply come on his proverbial white horse and whisk us away. We believed we could make him do our bidding and no matter how crazy we acted, he would always be around because we were simply irresistible. How wrong we were! Our adult life brought some harsh realizations that were in sharp contrast to what we had in our heads: people were different from what we originally imagined them to be and of course, our “perfect” men were not so perfect after all. Maturity beckoned on us to be more understanding, to adjust our mindsets and to accept the imperfections of the world and even though we decided it was safe and logical to do so, our pent up anger and resentment would not let us completely “let go”. This is the reason we ignore the ones who spend their time and energy loving us and pay attention to the ones who don’t with the hope that we would “change” them, fix them, turn them into the prince charming in our heads and have them love us and boy do we get disappointed most of the time!

It is important for us to pay attention to ourselves, understand who we are and that we too are imperfect despite all the wonderful qualities we possess (same goes for the men). It is also much more important to go beyond recognizing our imperfections to truly accepting and appreciating ourselves and acknowledging that we are unique and special (because we really are). It is only when we come to this realization that we begin to accept the shortcomings of others and more than that, love them all the more for it. We then stop trying to mold our perfect man or criticize or try to change the men in our lives who truly love us (we know they make us crazy sometimes but that’s okay), we begin to respect ourselves and stop letting the ones who do not deserve us hurt us simply because we cant let go of our “Messiah complex” (lets face it, attempting to change a man who is not interested in loving you or changing for your sake is an exercise in futility: only God can change a man, if it is necessary that he changes, that is). We begin to love like we should and the world begins to become the better place we always imagined it to be.

It is never too late to start over, to try again. It is never too late to pick up our broken pieces and move forward but in the right direction. Stop trying to change the world around you. Stop trying to change the man in your life. Stop trying to change your friends. Just stop trying!

Change yourself and see how without effort everything else changes!

TO DO : Instead of trying to change other people, focus your energy on developing the good qualities you possess.

DAILY MANTRA : I will be the change I want to see.

 

Those bundles of joy…

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Don’t you just love children? ( I’m sure some people would say yes with gritted teeth) Personally, I think they are awesome (when they are not screaming or destroying things). I think that the life of kids is one of the most fascinating things in the universe, if we care to pay close attention.

Kids are generally self centered creatures (well who could blame them really), they do not consider the condition of the world around them before voicing out their frustration over their need for food or attention i.e. they want what they want when they want and how they want it ( I have nephews and a niece so I have first hand experience of that) and some of you in my position or better yet married with children can attest to that.It is generally annoying to behold but brilliant to watch because it intrigues me how those “little people” can cause so much havoc yet get what they want at the end of the day (you get what I mean?).

There is so much to learn from the life of kids (it doesn’t matter if we were once kids before, I’m sure most of us would want to go back because being adult is way too scary!). First up, their confidence. It is funny how kids boldly go after what they want and succeed (even if to us it is just getting an extra bottle of milk).Even the “shy” kids aren’t exempted from this, they still do the needful if it means getting that which they crave. How often do we cringe in fear! We fear failure, we even fear fear itself and all of this is the reason we end up not getting the things that we desire. Unlike kids, we do not make our way, go after what we want boldly and get it!

Do you see how children smile all the time? (unless they are hungry or upset or just got spanked but shortly after it appears like it never happened) A kid is hardly ever worried about anything, not the food they would eat nor the clothes that would go on their backs, not even when they “poop” in their pants. They know there would always be somebody to make all their temporary mishaps go away (yea, I said temporary). Frankly I do understand that the life of adults is technically not “child’s play” but we worry too much about everything, even about the future that we do not see. We attempt to control everything and “handle” every situation even when it is not ours to fix. We forget that the same rules that apply to the birds of the air apply twice as much to us in God’s eyes. Thus, we slowly but surely start to lose our beautiful smiles, we become grumpy, old and ugly.The negative energy that we emit goes forth into the Universe and brings back more negative things for us to worry about. Truthfully, and painfully so, we get stuck in a loop of negativity.

After closely watching my nephews and niece, I came to the realization of something fascinating: if they wanted anything from their parents or even from me, they would yap on and on about it, cry about it, keep bugging us about it until we gave it to them willingly or unwillingly. I am more than certain that most of us (if not all of us) did this as children. How did we lose a trait so powerful as persistence? Where did we go wrong? We knock on a door once and if it does not open, we so easily turn around in disappointment and start looking for other options. Just like children, if we are certain that we meant to be in a particular place or get a particular thing that our hearts yearn for, and we even get the rare opportunity of trying, don’t you think it is best to keep fighting till we get it one way or another? (the right way of course!)

There is so much more to learn from kids but I believe these three power ups (as I’d like to call them) reign supreme: confidence, a worry free mind and persistence. Life becomes much easier when we believe in ourselves, have faith in God no matter the situation and keep asking and pushing for our dreams until we attain realization.We are more improved versions of who we used to be as kids and as we grow older, we should learn to gain more perspective in the way that makes our lives better but if by any chance we seem to have lost our way, we can retrace our steps and begin to walk the path that leads us to peace, happiness and all round fulfillment. It is never too late.

(P.S. My niece is laying next to me refusing to sleep, my persistence will make sure she doesn’t do anything else, other than sleep that is. Yes, I can!)

TO DO : The next time you have the privilege of being around children, don’t push them away. There is so much you can learn from them

DAILY MANTRA : Like a child, I will be confident, worry free and persistent in the pursuit of my dreams!

When things don’t go right…

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I am writing this post from a very awkward position (trust me, you don’t wanna know) and its not something I particularly fancy (I have been ill for 48 hours now). Its just not funny.

Imagine making plans to the last detail, telling yourself how your day, week and/or month will pan out, being happy at how organized and principled you can be and then BAM! something happens and scatters everything you have so meticulously put together. That has got to be one of the most frustrating things in this world if not the most frustrating (you can argue with your friends about that later). Point is, it sucks!

Now here comes the big question: what do you do when things don’t go right? There is an obvious temptation to want to give up, let go and just wallow in self pity and anxiety. It seems like the easiest option (unless you are bedridden but even then there is always a way out). It is very easy to fold your arms and say “I am done” and this can be seen not only in our personal activities but also in our relationships with others. We get too tired of trying to make it work, we prefer to fantasize about  the green grass in other people’s yards when we abandon and refuse to revive the grass turning brown in our backyards. We assume that if we don’t get it at the first try, then it is not meant to be and the forces are against us,therefore we need to try something new. We have the false notion in our heads that somehow things are just meant to fall into our laps and perfect themselves for us. What a wrong way to operate! (I say “we” because I struggle with it too)

Having a positive disposition to anything and everything is a great way to start. I could have decided to curl up in bed all day, feeling sorry for myself and thinking negative thoughts that could dampen my spirit even more (that has happened on a good number of occasions) but I decided to work within the capacity of my strength and keep my mind open and positive to receive what good the Universe has for me. It is a great mood lifter and I am sure that if it can work for me, it can work for you too. It is also important to not dwell so much on receiving and/or expecting as you should on giving and/or working for what you want. It is said that expectation is root of all disappointment (pretty logical because our standards for the kind of life we want to have are more often than not too high for anyone to provide for us but us!). Nobody said things were going to be easy, but you need to be absolutely certain that you have done the best for yourself that you can given your current situation (and if we critically analyze this, many of us would fall short).

Need I mention that the grace of God is always available (for those who believe) even when we fail to try. So imagine putting real effort and having supernatural backing at the same time: things that previously seemed impossible become surmountable. All of our problems will not disappear, but we become stronger to face them because giving up isn’t an option for us.

I am writing this post from a very awkward position (I know by now you know not to ask) but with some determination (and the grace of God) I have reached my finish line for today (I really hope that you have reached yours) so if the question lingers in your mind about what to do when things don’t go right, may I suggest you make a detour to the left? It might not be so bad after all.

TO DO : Try to find the next best option instead of giving up altogether

DAILY MANTRA : I won’t give up on me, no matter what!

The waiting game…

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I love punctuality, matter of fact I think it is an integral part of my genetic makeup. I really cannot stand having to be late for anything, or being kept waiting by anyone (for me that is worse than being sick, hypothetically of course). The earth is a wonderful place to be in when everything in my life is in order, especially as it relates to time.

But here’s the sad part. This kinda means that when something is out of order, doesn’t come in time or is on its way for way longer than it should, it creates a lot of chaos in my life. I start to feel as though my world is literally upside down, my body starts to itch and every inch of me is a bundle of nerves. Sometimes I start to snap at people (if for any unfortunate reason they are around me) and I end up creating more problems than I originally had (in other words, having a bunch of people to apologize to). And do not get me started if that coincides with “that time of the month”, then its like Hulk in real life (a little exaggerated but you get the point right?)

Here’s the thing: I decided to point this out because I know that I am one of many women who feel this way, who are not very good at playing the waiting game. Now wait a second, before you start to blame yourself for it you should consider this: We have often been told that we do not have the luxury of time, that we are like flowers that blossom and die off afterwards, blah blah blah (meaning menopause). Basically, all we hear around us is that our clocks are ticking fast. So its not entirely our fault for wanting what we want and at the time we want it too.

On the other hand, it is important to know that there are ways to deal with the pressure (yes there are). There are ways to wait properly without getting frustrated in the process (no one said it will be easy though), it all starts in the mind. Your mind needs to convince your body that time will not make you wither, instead, it will unite all the forces of the universe to make you blossom. Stay punctual (please do not change that for the world!) but just like the serenity prayer, accept the things you cannot change in good faith, have the courage to change the things that you can without succumbing to the frustration it often brings, and pray for the wisdom to know how to handle yourself and emerge stronger through all of it.

I am of the opinion that women are impatient by design (mother nature does not really give us the luxury of time) but we do not have to remain impatient. We can break what is seemingly the “curse” of impatience placed upon us by investing our time and effort in doing the things that we love and staying positive. Remember, everything (yes, I mean everything) comes to those who wait, and everything good comes to those who wait with a positive disposition while making the best use of what is available to them at every moment in time.

The concept of time is man made, therefore we can use it in a way that works for us, without letting it turn us into grumpy old women hitting menopause before menopause. We can play the waiting game like the divas that we are. We got this!

TO DO : Take your life one day at a time, and know the difference between rushing  and working swiftly.

DAILY MANTRA : My patience will achieve more than my force.

 

My mother’s smile…

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I can’t stop thinking about her face, the way it glowed every time she walked into a room filled with people. I can’t stop thinking about how people commended her on how gorgeous she looked, even when her dress was less expensive than everyone else’s.

I can’t stop thinking about how rich and satisfied I felt every time mother was around, it was evident by how clean the surroundings were and the aroma of great tasting food coming from the kitchen (I know people would love their mother’s food whether it tastes good or not, but this does not come from that place at all). Her cooking is amazing! Just knowing that mother was around meant that even if there was no money, there would be an abundance of food and happiness (I consider that a miracle even to this day).

I remember how at some point all she did was come home from work and lay down in an attempt to relax (or at least that was what I thought it was). I used to get mad at her and ask her why she was avoiding me, why she wouldn’t play with me. I even had a little journal where I would write about how she didn’t love me anymore and how I was going to plan my escape (yea I admit, I was a little dramatic as a kid). I had no idea that in those moments, mother was battling with headaches, fever, and some other illnesses that she has since overcome (thank God) plus the general stress and tiredness that came from working as hard as she worked. I really love her.

I remember how she would make me dance and sing  for her (I was really dramatic) in different accents and styles and it would make her laugh hard, how she made sure that I always looked my best for school, church, or a regular outing even if there clearly was no money to make that happen (she was the God i could see), how she shared her love so equally among myself and my siblings that it was difficult to tell who she loved most. Watching her go out was the worst thing I experienced (I always felt like she was leaving me) and seeing her return from work or travel was all I ever looked forward to. It was all I lived for.

I remember how I didn’t know how to comfort her in those moments where her pain was so intense that it brought tears to her eyes. I only remember putting my tiny hands over her shoulder, hugging her hard and whispering in her ears “You will be fine” (that was all I could afford to say especially as her tears made me cry). And when I grew older and she started to bring up the subject of sex and men, I would be so uncomfortable to the point where I would act like a know-it-all just so she would drop the subject. I knew nothing.

I did not understand why mother would carry her rosary everywhere, why I would meet her praying in her office, singing praises while she worked or even praying late at night after we had concluded the general family prayer. I didn’t understand why she would give herself to the church, working selflessly and helping people who sometimes I felt didn’t deserve her help. I didn’t understand why she never reacted negatively when she was pushed to the wall by people in her life who didn’t appreciate her (and who personally I would have loved to beat the hell out of if I could). I never understood why she was always quick to forgive her transgressors and foster peace wherever she went. Now I do.

I could never repay her for all her kindness (a lifetime would not cover it). Now when I think of love, I think of her. When I imagine selflessness in its pure and undiluted form, images of her beautiful face envelop my mind. And I have made it my responsibility to live my life in the way I know would make her happy, in the way that would make all her efforts find purpose and meaning. I will spend the rest of my life being grateful to her for everything, and making her smile always.

My mother’s smile is after all, one of the wonders of this cold world.

TO DO : Call your mother, and let her know how much you love her!

DAILY MANTRA : I will learn to love others, just like my mother loved me.