Sunday, July 26, 2009

Does My Thinking Need An Adjustment?

Loving, caring, hard-working, successful, dedicated mother, multi-talented professional and independent woman. These are the words that describe my long time sister friend, Lisa Barclay. Since she was the winner of my blog challenge last month it only seems right to share her post. And if you'd like to read more stories from Lisa pick up a copy of my latest book "Journeys of Love Voices of the Heart" available now at: www.HillabeesandRoses.com. Enjoy her post!

Does My Thinking Need An Adjustment?

I try to start most of my work days with a devotional reading. You know, try to get my mind right as I prepare to do the corporate shuffle and deal with daily life. Today’s message resonated with me in a really big way because I’ve been going through some things in my personal life and as a result, I’ve had a lot on my mind. The message told a story of a woman who planned how her whole life would be in her head and when it didn’t turn out that way she was angry and frustrated. In her mind her husband was not the knight in shining armor as he practiced his daily ritual of coming home from work, offering no help around the house, criticizing her weight and the things she didn’t do; all the while assuming his couch potato, channel surfing position. Her house wasn’t the Elle D├ęcor picture of perfection that she had hoped for. Things never seemed to stay in their place. The floor always needed mopping and the sink had a never ending pile of dishes. Her kids were not the perfect little angels she dreamed of because they never listened and caused daily chaos in the house. Over time, this woman’s daily mantra became, “Why bother? No one else does?” She let life’s disappointments block her view of the blessings in her own life. Sadly, she couldn’t see beyond “what wasn’t” in her life.
I have to admit I started seeing myself in that very same light and have often been guilty of adopting that same attitude. The message asked if we realized when our thinking needed an adjustment. Do we check ourselves to see if our thoughts have any true merit or have we allowed negative energy to influence our minds and our hearts? As an imperfect person, these questions give me great pause because I know that my thinking is not where it should be. I am grateful for the daily blessings in my life - my home, my son, food, clothing, a job, my health and so many other things. I often think about and pray for the people who are not as blessed and fortunate as I. Yet,in spite of my gratitude I have to stop and ask myself if I need to change my own thinking. As a self proclaimed, strong Black woman, I know I do. And just like the message that was based off of the scripture (Philippians 4:8-9), that change, would create more peace. In dew season and with God’s help, as I think differently and act differently the blessings of peace will rain down on my life. And that, is a much better, option to me.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Loving Myself Whole

Several years ago I found a letter from a lover who had written to a woman in another country. She lived, in Japan, I believe. When I read it, I was devastated, broken and numb. I suppose it was because we had dated for a number of years. Once I got to the end, I packed up my things, and raced out of his front door. There were no words that came from my mouth; I was simply in a state of disbelief and very, very angry. And with all that anger, came feelings of insecurity and doubt. I started picking myself apart, wondering what part of me he didn't love. Was I not attractive enough? Smart enough? Kind enough? Was it because I didn't have the long, silky hair that she had? Or was it, as he used to tell me, that I needed a more submissive spirit? As the questions continued to ring in my head so did my anger. So I used the address of the other woman that I managed to jot down a few days before to find some answers. I wanted all of my frustration and bitterness to be directed toward her. Not him. Not me. I asked how long they had been seeing one another although it really didn’t matter. I asked if she had also loved him even though I could care less. And then I wished her well and told her how I hoped that his mistake wouldn’t be repeated with her. And in that moment I found closure because I knew that his cheating had nothing to do with me at all. That period of my life, as difficult as it was, became the catalyst for me to stop the inner conversations of inadequacy and replace it with self love. And while there will always be the memory of that broken relationship I learned that there was more value in loving myself whole. In dew season, I pray, we all feel this way.