Roaring For Peace

Remembering the Lion King!

Men Need To Know Y

Remembering the Lion King!

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. is memorialized as a drum major of peace, and rightly so, as all drum majors do, he brought the noise. The noise that he brought was music to the people but an awful ruckus to the powers of this age. The sounds of justice and equality were so disturbing to the government of his day that he was assassinated. Malcolm X is the one that is always thought of as the militant one but I propose that King was just as militant, if not more so, he just chose different weaponry. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. combated the evil of his day with a barrage of love. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. knew that his actions would most likely take him away from those he loved dearly, yet he didn’t relent. “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay…

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Making The Choice To Be Human

humans

To treat someone humane means to treat someone as you would want to be treated. It means to show others the same sympathy, consideration, and regard you desire for yourself. Any time you fail to show this to another person, in that moment, you are being inhumane. I know what it is like to be treated inhumanely; to have someone look toward you but never actually see you, because they have projected on you an image conjured from ingrained ignorance and misinformation; to have your voice deflected by a belief that it is inherently missing a tone of relevance. These examples may not seem significant however, they identify the underlying darkness which enables one person to mistreat another or for one part of society to abuse another. This includes all forms of injustice rooted in inequality and hate, for example, the enslavement of humans, the general marginalization of humans, and all forms of human exploitation.

I said earlier that I know what it is like to be treated inhumanely, but I also know what it is like to be inhumane. I grew up in a culture where the dehumanization of others has been normalized. I grew up watching the genocide of the indigenous people of North America as entertainment in “Cowboy and Indian” movies. I watched sporting events which debased the humanity of Native Americans like the “Red Skins” and the “Braves”. As a kid, at a Braves game, I would watch “Chief Knock-a-Homer” arrayed in eagle’s feathers and beads do a dance on top of the Braves dugout to summon a home-run. It doesn’t matter if “Chief Knock-a-Homer” was Native American or not, it was unconscionable. As a child I watched “Looney Tune” and “Warner Brothers” cartoons objectify female characters as sex symbols and stigmatize them as helpless nagging dim wits. In these same cartoons, Mexicans were often portrayed as lazy, slow speaking people, often surrounded by flies. These inhumane images, as a form of entertainment, was an attack on my own humanity in the form of desensitization. The destruction of Black humanity has been so prevalent and obvious I don’t think it’s necessary to site an example, but just in case there is an extraordinary chance that someone is scratching their head over this, let’s take the U.S. Government. It should be unnecessary for there to be constitutional amendments and Civil Rights Acts and Voting Rights Acts and Anti-Lynching laws to ensure the obvious, that all men are created equal and should have equal citizenship, but that is not the case. There must be authoritative monitoring and enforcement of individual’s civil rights or people get destroyed. We wouldn’t need big government if the majority of Americans didn’t have such small hearts.

You are not dehumanized until you replicate the cold-hearted acts of the inhumane. The power to be human and remain humane is yours. Preserve your humanity through the wisdom of GOD shared in 2 Peter 1:2-8 (KJV):

“Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

January has been cited as Human Trafficking Awareness month. Many people aren’t aware of how prevalent and close to us human trafficking is. It is like a raging sewer of human rights violations happening right beneath our feet. February has been cited as Black History month. This observance is necessary because many of the vital contributions Black people have made to the establishment and development of America, at great sacrifice, go unheralded and uncelebrated. These are two of many socially conscious observances that occur throughout the calendar year. Below, I have listed several similar observances recognized in America. Don’t allow yourself to be alienated from these ethnic and social observances which serve to bring us all closer together through the eradication of ignorance and the disruption of ingrained unconscious bias. The more we learn about each other and the events that have shaped this world, the more it is affirmed that the human race is the only race, and all our lives are connected.

 

January

Human Trafficking Awareness Month

February

National Black History Month

March

Greek-American Heritage Month

Irish-American Heritage Month

Women’s History Month

May

Asian Pacific American History Month

Jewish-American Heritage Month

September

National Hispanic Heritage Month

October

German-American Heritage Month

National Italian-American Heritage Month

Polish-American Heritage Month

November

National American Indian Heritage Month

 

Being Strong in the Power of His Might

footstool 2

Isaiah 66:1
Thus saith the Lord, “The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool…”

I was asked by a brother recently for help understanding the Apostle Paul’s thorn in the flesh, spoken of in 2 Corinthian’s 12:7-10. When looking at this block of scripture, I have found that conversation often looms around what the thorn was, however it is not as important as why the thorn was there. The “Why” is always more important than the “What”. We look at certain frailties as deficiencies but it is often those frailties that keep us safe. People often talk about the strength of trees like the oak but never mention the palm tree, however the palm tree can survive much stronger storms than the oak, because it bends and bows with the wind. Our frailties often cause us to bend and bow to GOD, who is the true source of our strength. Many people trusting in their own prowess have fallen because they wouldn’t bow to the principles of GOD.

GOD revealed to the Apostle Paul that His strength was perfected in weakness. Based on that revelation, we should reconsider how we view our weaknesses and what we consider perfect to be. Your Creator new what he was doing when he fashioned you, with your particular strengths and weaknesses. You are made perfectly for what you are called to do. In humility, we have to surrender both our strengths and weaknesses to GOD. GOD is greatest in our lives when we live surrendered to His ability through us, instead of leaning on our own limited abilities. We are in a better position to succeed when we stay in close proximity to Him, in acknowledgement of our weakness, than when we venture away from Him in self-confidence on account of our strengths.

If people had their way, they would all be like the fictional superman, but there is a reason GOD allows man’s thorns. The first reason is that learning to love one another and building godly character is more important than anything else, because NOTHING is sustainable without the principles of Love. We learn love best through understanding relationships. Virtuous interrelationship is the dynamic of life. Learning how to virtuously interact with one another through relationship teaches us the principles of Love. If it were not for frailties, pride in selfish ignorance would keep us divided and unfulfilled. This is why Yeshua taught that the rich seldom enter the Kingdom of Heaven, because they often believe their relationship to money is more important than any other.

The second reason is because GOD has to get all the glory, because He alone is the source of life. Our allegiance, devotion, focus has to remain with GOD, first and foremost. If we are to be of any real benefit to our loved ones or the world in general, it will come from our virtuous interrelation with GOD. If we put our trust in a person because we thought our lives hinged on them, the focus on them would hinder us from reflecting the light of GOD meant to lead others to Him. GOD commands us against idolatry for our own good, and everything exalted against GOD will be brought down.

When YAHWEH is your hero you don’t need your own super powers. Anytime you experience weakness in your life, embrace it as an opportunity to encounter the strength of your Creator in a new way. He wants to show you the strength derived from interrelation with Him, to establish greater intimacy with Him and greater fulfillment through Him. I believe this dynamic is what was behind the intrepid exploits of the Apostle Paul, and also the inspiration behind what he wrote in 2 Corinthians 12:10, “Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.” So, do not shy away or be deterred when you find yourself faced with a situation which seems greater than you, see it as an opportunity to grow in your relationship with GOD, which will inevitably strengthen you and bring him glory.

 

A love more fervent than the sun.

Sun2

This feels a bit like kissing and telling, but I don’t think my Heavenly Father will mind. I noticed while lying in bed this morning that my furnace was struggling to come on. So, I got up, put on some clothes, and started working to resolve the issue. The furnace seemed totally unresponsive to the thermostat. After I had exhausted all I knew to do, I left it alone and started to adjust my thoughts from the frustration and gloom associated with having the furnace go out this holiday season, just a few days into winter.

I thanked GOD that the next few days were forecasted to be unseasonably warm, and sunny. Since the sun was already up and peeking through the blinds, I thought I might as well let a little sun light in to start warming the home. I opened the blinds, and while standing there with my face close to the window, I enjoyed the warmth of the sun on my face. I began to praise my Father in heaven for the wonder of creation, that an object millions of miles away had enough warmth to pleasantly kiss my face. As I was still in that moment, with a grateful heart, enjoying the warmth and splendor of GOD, I heard a soft whoosh over my head. It was the vent over my head blowing warm air. The furnace had come on. It had been 10 or fifteen minutes since I had abandoned my efforts to start the furnace. In that quiet moment of praising and thanking GOD, I felt Him express to me that His love for me was more fervent than the sun, and could reach much further, and penetrate much deeper. As tears trickling down my face, I basked in the awareness that my Heavenly Father was mindful of me and my heart, and He appreciated my being grateful.

This moment blessed me, and even though at times we may not be able to see GOD, and heaven seems trillions of miles away, our GOD is always close enough, and merciful enough, and tender enough, and considerate enough, and gracious enough, to hear the cry of our heart, to give us more than we deserve. I’m stirred by His love today and I pray you feel the warmth of His love. Peace and blessing!

 

Looking Ahead Begins With Looking Back

Sankofa 2

The fact that it will soon be year 2020 has prompted many people to have dialogue surrounding vision. These conversations cover everything from visions of businesses, to family and personal wellness. It is always good to aspire and plan, but without clear vision, you could reach your destination only to find it was not really what the soul needed for fulfillment. Clear vision comes from a clear heart. A clear heart is obtained in the same way as clearing a view for your eyes. It involves removing obstructions which hinder a clear view of the focal point.

When we speak of a vision for our life or business etc., we have to en-vision it because it is not yet physically tangible. Envisioning involves looking inside to view something you desire to see outside. So, your internal make up will determine what you are capable of envisioning for your life. Actually, your internal make up dictates how you perceive everything in life. This is why Proverbs 4:23 says, “Keep your heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.” Your heart is your mind’s eye, so clear vision begins with getting your heart right. Life experiences, over time, can leave our hearts cluttered if we don’t process them properly. An unwillingness to deal with the past keeps it present.

Properly compartmentalizing your past is not an easy task, but it has to be done. Compartmentalizing your past keeps experiences contained in a way that gives you control over their influence. When this work is not done, bad experiences from the past can influence your emotions negatively today. Good experiences can hold you captive too long, hindering you from experiencing even greater experiences today. By compartmentalizing your past experiences, they are neatly stored a way for constructive reference if needed. Make sure you choose some healthy containers like: [Out of my control], [the best I could do at the time], [I was wrong, but I have repented], [God will help me with this one in time], [Job well done, ready for what’s next], [Thankful for that accomplishment], [Lesson learned, I’ll handle it differently in the future], [I am not that person anymore]. These are some containers that will allow you to bring closure to past experiences that could be cluttering your heart.

This is not a work you do alone. You need the light of GOD’s spirit, His mercy, and grace, to help you sort through the database of your soul. You also need the support of people with GOD’s love in their heart giving affirmation, encouragement, and counsel.  We did not get here alone; therefore it stands to reason we need help making it through.

This process reminds me of the ancient African practice of “Sankofa”. The word is derived from the language of Ghana, which relates to the process of looking back to the past, in order to bring understanding gained to bear on the present, to ensure positive progress moving forward. This meaning is captured in the symbol of a bird looking back, retrieving an egg from her wings, with her feet facing forward.

Wishing you GOD’s best in the near and distant future!

Got Freedom?

Harriett

Coming out of the buzz surrounding the recently released Harriett Tubman movie is controversy over a quote being attributed to her. Harriet Tubman is quoted saying she would have freed more people had they known they were enslaved. Christ stated that His arrival on earth marked the fulfillment of the prophecy of Isaiah 61:1, that He was the anointed one which had come to proclaim liberty to the captives. Now, over 2000 years ago for Christ and over 200 for Tubman, millions are still enslaved. Whether Harriet Tubman said it or not, the main cause is that people are deceived about what liberty is, and they are unaware that there is a greater life which they can live now.

The gospel of Christ is meant to liberate us. The scripture says, “He who the Son makes free is free indeed.” What does this mean? Here is a definition of free coming from Merriam Webster’s dictionary which says it well: 

[: Not determined by anything beyond its own nature or being; choosing or capable of choosing for itself.] 

The life of Christ, in those born of His spirit, makes them free to operate from their newly inherited divine nature unhindered. Though there are influences and forces from this world and even our own bodies, we are still capable of choosing for ourselves what actions we will take. Those who are born again are no longer oppressed by the nature of sin. This is the freedom which the Spirit of GOD provides us as spoken of in the bible. Though this is sound biblical teaching, it is uncommon to hear this taught in churches or professed as a belief by Christians. Satan has crippled the faith of many Christians through religious doctrines that don’t challenge their faith or the power of GOD in their lives. My book, “True Heritage: Recovering From Spiritual Identity Theft” offers a path of restoration from this condition, which has worsened in these times of greyness and tolerance. I believe “True Heritage” was inspired to ignite the fire of the spirit in the hearts of those who read it, and to reflect the true light of the gospel, through illuminating the tangible benefits won for us through the Salvation of Christ.

Here is an excerpt from “True Heritage”:

“The person you think you are could very easily be based on spiritual puppetry, where you are the puppet. Another way of looking at this is psychological, or mental manipulation, based on ideas and thought patterns ingrained through exterior suggestion. The majority of the people in the world have been subjected to this type of manipulation. What most people call “freedom” is, in effect, slavery, because they are being controlled by influences they are not aware of. When Yeshua read the prophecy of Isaiah, as recorded in the book of Luke, chapter 4:18 (KJV), He stated, “He was anointed…to preach deliverance to the captives.” People are captive, and don’t realize it.”

 

Energy spent on trying to be perfect is not wasted if spent in effort to remain still in GOD’s hands.

Reposted with a little more clarity…Hope it encourages you!

Adam

We can never obtain a thing that we don’t understand. I have heard many believers saying we will never reach perfection in this lifetime. All through the bible our Heavenly Father tells us to be perfect even as He is perfect. I heard someone say in a bible study recently, “God tells us to be perfect but He knows that we can’t.” That is not consistent with our Father’s character. If He says we can be perfect in this present world, then we can. We just need to understand what He means by perfect and stop leaning to our own understanding. In His eyes, we are perfect the way He created us, even with our perceived flaws. He made man from a lump of clay and shaped him into a man after His own image.

We were perfect until we decided to turn ourselves into a DIY project.

DYI MAN 2

Whatever is broken in us will remain broke until the Lord fixes us. We can’t fix ourselves, but we can make up our minds to sell out and surrender to His hands. When we surrender in the hands of GOD, through the Cross of Christ, we become that perfect lump of clay in the Potter’s hand. That lump of clay doesn’t look like much; in fact, it can look like a mess, however in the Potter’s eyes it is just what he is looking for. If you look at scripture, you will see that our GOD never chooses anyone perfect according to man’s definition. Look at the men GOD has chosen over the ages, from Abraham to Moses, to David, all the way to the Apostle Paul. All these men like a lump of clay, had messy beginnings, but they obtained one common trait that made them perfect, they surrendered to GOD. They were surrendered to GOD and their hearts were set on pleasing Him. This is what our Father expects of us. To be like Him, faithful, true, and single hearted; not uncommitted and double minded. If we can focus our energies on seeking Him first as our resource for everything that pertains to life, He is able to guide us in a way that’s perfect for who we are at that moment. Checkout these scriptures:

1 Kings 6:61

“Let your heart therefore be perfect with the Lord our God, to walk in his statutes, and to keep his commandments, as at this day.”

1 Kings 11:4

“For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the Lord his God, as was the heart of David his father. ”

Here is an excerpt from my book “True Heritage” on the topic:

Let’s also look at Matthew 19:21 (KJV): “Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me.” Are we to believe that the rich young ruler was flawless in every way except for the need to sell off all of his belongings for the poor? No, that’s not it. He was not yet ready to be totally and singularly identified with Christ in his life. The Bible says that the rich young ruler went away grieved because he had great possessions. Matthew 6:20–22 (KJV) says, “But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.” The rich young ruler was not ready to be filled with light, because his heart was divided. Every man has the potential to reach the point of total surrender where he realizes that all of life’s true riches are obtained through following GOD.