It’s My Inheritance…

It’s My Inheritance…

It’s my birthday y’all…. and  this year I just wasn’t too excited about it; and if you know anything about me, its that I LOVE my birthday.  I had a few weeks of deep contemplation about what I wanted my next year of life to be like. Here ‘s what i’ve been pondering on the last little while.

Have you ever thought about the word inheritance and what it means?

Recently, the subject of inheritance has seemingly been all around me. This summer, Disney released the live action version of The Lion King. There is a scene in the movie where Mufasa (father) has a conversation with his son, Simba. He explains to him that everything the light touches belongs to them and that one day Simba will inherit all of it.  Watch the full scene ( from the original Disney motion picture film) down below:

What does it actually mean to inherit something?  Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the word inherit as, ” : to come into possession of or receive especially as a right or divine portion”.

Simba didn’t have to do anything to receive what Mufasa had to offer him. He was told that it belonged to him just becuase he belonged to Mufasa. It was his right as Mufasa’s son to inherit all that Mufasa had..

Hmm… think on that for a minute.

I was raised as an only child and I am my mothers only biological child. My sibling(s)  on my father’s side are much older than me and so I grew up always knowing whatever my mother had, and most of what my father had  would one day become mine. I didn’t have to do anything to earn it. My only job was to be born into the particular family that I was. It is my rightful place to one day take possesion of the things they have promised me.

I think I see a trend here….

Let’s look biblically for a second. The story  of Abraham is a great depiction of inheritance in direct corelation to us. God promised Abraham that if he followed His lead ( Genesis 12: 1-3) left all he knew behind he would bless him in ways that he couldn’t even imagine. God made a covenant with Abraham when he was old in age (75)  He, at the time was childless and God promised him that he would sow an heir and that his descendents would outnumber the stars in the sky.  (Genesis 15: 5) Abraham would  become the father to genrations of people who would go on to inherit the promised land.. and in latter days, inherit the gift of salvation through Jesus Christ.

Abraham didn’t have to do anything except follow God’s direction to inherit all that God promised to him.

That’s so relatable to us today and our relationship with  Jesus. God sent His son  (Jesus) as a sacrifce, to die on a cross just for us! We didn’t have to do anything to be worthy of such a sacrifice. The benefits of this sacrifice are eternal life. if we just take the step to join the family of God, wholeheartedly, all He has promised us is ours for the taking.

All He asks of us in return is to love Him and to serve Him in spirt and in truth.

Belong: We belong to God
Be in a Family: Through Jesus we are a part of the family of God 
Follow: Follow Jesus to inherit the kingdom of God and in turn eternal life

I was visiting with some friends a few weekends ago, and we were having some pretty deep discussions. We began to discuss how we often doubt God and all He has promised us. My big bro turned to the group and said ( paraphrasing )  ” Why do we act as if the inheritance isn’t ours?”

Wow…

That was like a big slap in of reality in my face. A staement that was so simple , took on a very profound meaning for me. For too long I have “known” that all God promised me, belongs to me, but never have I really taken the time to examine what that really means and BELIEVED IT!

Why am I worrying about trivial things when God already has my inheritance waiting on me?  Why am I doubting that what is for will always be for me? Why am I becoming frustrated with the timing of the inheritance’s delivery?

Because I am a fleshly human, flaws and all!

But, this year I’ve decided to walk in my inheritance! It’s already mine so I need to act like it! Everything that God has promised me, I’m claiming it this year! This is the time that my faith gets stronger and deeper and I stand with arms and heart wide open ready to receive. It’s time to live in the overflow of my inheritance.

I must admit, I was not excited for my birthday this year. I am coming off of a few years where God has really been stretchng me and grooming me and pushing me and pulling me and…. you get the drift. It’s been a season of growing pains. But after this conversation, a fire has been light under me to once again start speaking blessings over my life! Year 34 I’m claiming victory! I want the blessings of Abraham to flow all over me!

( This one of my favourite songs! It’s so appropriate for this post and I’m about to make it my theme song for this entire birth year! Anytime I start to lose sight of my inheritance, I’m going to through this on and worship all doubt away 🙂 )

Pray for me y’all (cause the devil stays lurking!)

I hope everyone has a blessed day! I’m off to the airport!! Let the birthday celebrations begin!

God bless you all!
xo

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​Monday Motivation: Still…

​Monday Motivation: Still…

Hey Y’all,

So… I almost drowned about a week ago…   twice! I mean it would have been one hundred percent my fault but let me backtrack a little.

Last week I was on vacation in Rio Hato, Panama. This part of Panama is surrounded by the Pacific ocean. Being a girl of Caribbean descent, and one who is naturally prone to travel to the Caribbean islands which are surrounded by the Caribbean sea, I am not particularly fond of the Pacific. I find it a little too rough for my liking and honestly, just not as beautiful! ( Sorry my Pacific Ocean lovers!)  But nevertheless, I love water and I will always take advantage of any opportunity to be near it.

However, the beach at my resort wasn’t too bad! Now if you travel to beach resorts, you will know that the lifeguards have a flag system that they use to notify the patrons about the conditions of the water.

Image result for flag system at beaches

So now to the topic of my nearly drowning.
(I can actually swim pretty well so this was not a factor in this near-death experience LOL)

All my friends were over at the pool. I wanted to take a quick dip in the ocean. So with no volunteers to come with me, I took it upon myself to just pop over to the beach and do just that. I saw the flags, waving bright and boldly in all its yellow glory. Medium hazard? I thought what could possibly be the harm? So bravely, I walked into the ocean…

it was at that moment I knew… I’d made a very poor decision. It was also in this moment that I learned that rip tides are REAL!

What’s a rip tide you ask? A riptide is:

  1. a relatively strong, narrow current flowing outward from the beach through the surf zone and presenting a hazard to swimmers.

So as I began to splash around, I noticed that the waves were extremely rough ( duh soph! Hence the warning flag) I started to attempt to make my way back to the shore, my toes were still touching the ocean floor at this point… until they weren’t anymore. Instantly my fight or flight instincts took over and I began to tread water like crazy and tried to propel myself towards the shore.

I couldn’t. I began to get weary and think to myself, “Really Soph, you’re gonna come all this way to drown alone in the ocean?”  So I began to fight! Another riptide bashed me again, this time knocking me backwards and then finally it subsided and I was able to crawl my way to the sand and leave the ocean!

The next time I nearly drowned/died was on a water slide. I’d consider myself pretty adventurous and so when I saw this waterslide, I knew I had to try it! There were two different slides to choose from. I naturally decided to do the fastest one because I’m a G! ( lol I’m not really, I’d just like to think I am:) )

So I get situated on the slide and push off. At first, it was going really well… until it wasn’t! I approached one particular part on this slide where the water completely blinded me and suddenly I was taking the rest of the ride with no clear vision of when the end of the slide would come alongside my inevitable entrance to the pool below.  Well, boy, did I enter the pool with a big splash… and was so shocked that I couldn’t catch my bearings to get myself back up to the surface! Thank God for the lifeguard at the bottom who literally put his hand on my back and guided me up to the surface safely!

Being back for a week now, I have had time to reflect on all the hidden lessons my experiences on this trip taught me.

Life sometimes comes at us like a riptide or a crazy waterslide.  We oftentimes put ourselves in situations without thinking things through and then are shocked when life hits us with a big splash!

Sometimes we enter situations that are out of our control and end up really feeling out of control! It sometimes feels like we are being carried away with the undertow of the cares of life. But just as with the riptide I faced in the ocean, it will subside. It is up to you to decide if you’re gonna tread water and fight against the current or give up and let it overtake you! Just like my experience on the waterslide, sometimes we need a helping hand to help us find our way to the surface.

For me, that helping hand, that motivation to tread water and keep fighting is rooted in the fact that I serve a God who promised to never leave me or let me down!

If you are currently feeling trapped in the riptide, be encouraged! Strong currents won’t rage forever! Calm seas will reign again!

The song “Still” by Hillsong United always provides me with comfort whenever I find myself in the undertows of life. Have a listen down below:

When the oceans rise and thunders roar
I will soar with you above the storm
Father you are king over the flood
I will be still and know you are God

Be Blessed!
Til next time…
xoxo

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©justlovethemanyway

Monday Motivation: Giants…

Monday Motivation: Giants…

Hey guys!

I hope your weekend was as merry and enjoyable as mine was! Yesterday, I got together with a group of friends to sing at an event ( singing back up for my friend and up and coming gospel artist by the name of Tyshan Knight) and after we completed that we went back to his house where we all had an impromptu game night. We were playing the game “Catchphrase” which is just like the game Taboo where you have to describe the word on the card without saying words or catchphrases that would automatically give it away. I was on a team with my bro LJ and we were facing Lyanne ( Tyshan’s wife) and our friend Isaac. Obviously, LJ and I won ( lol shade) and as we always do we began to “trash talk” each other ( All in love though, thats just how we are!) Ly made a comment about how sometimes giants ( meaning LJ and I) get defeated; and thus this post was inspired.

What is a giant? According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary a giant is described as:

  1.  a legendary humanlike being of great stature and strength

  2. 2a  :  a living being of great sizeb  :  a person of extraordinary powers

  3. 3:  something unusually large or powerful

This definition leads me to think about the story of David and Goliath.  The story can be found in 1 Samuel 17. Saul, who was king, was very disobedient. So God asked Samuel to find a new king. He sought to find the king through a man named Jesse who had 8 sons. To make a long story short, Samuel looked at 7 of the sons and none of then were right. Until he met the last son; a little shepherd boy named David. The Lord confirmed that David indeed would one day be king!  Now in this time the Israelites and the Philistines were not getting along . The Philistines had lots of giants living in their land, the biggest and strongest of whom was named Goliath. He was over 9 feet tall and was constantly looking to challenge the Israelites. If he was to win, the Israelites would become servants of his people the Philistines. But if he lost, his people would become the servants.  Just looking at the sheer size of this man, understandably were afraid. Nobody wanted to challenge this giant… enter David! So to make a long story short, David, on faith that God would protect him, accepted Goliath’s challenge , and with a slingshot and stone David was able to conquer this beast!

We face problems everyday. May it be problems with our health, issues in our relationships, financial struggles, family problems… so many problems or in other words …  Giants. Sometimes we elevate our struggles to giant status( that’s not to say that we don’t face some colossal issues in our lives)  So often we have allowed our problems to become large and powerful, uncontainable! We have let our problems take control of us all the while forgetting who is really in control of our lives.

David trusted God to take care of him. The feat he was facing looked impossible to conquer. But, because he trusted God to take care of him, he approached that giant with no fear!

I urge you to stand up to the Goliath’s in your lives! If you would only approach your Goliath’s  with the heart of David. A heart that knows that no matter how difficult the situation is, He will see you through! If God can use someone like David to conquer a giant like Goliath, certainly He can use someone like you and I to conquer our issues. Something as small as a stone was able to take out a giant.  So, though it may seem small, a simple prayer, grounded in faith that God can do all things , could absolutely destroy your problems.

There is no Goliath too big for God!
Always remember, that David ( through God) as small and seemingly powerless as he was,  ended up being the victor!

What are the Goliath’s in your life?
What are you doing to conquer your Goliath’s?

There is a song by Donald Lawrence called Giants that is so fitting, that I will leave with you today.

Have a blessed Monday !
xoxo

Monday Motivation: All I Have To Give…

Monday Motivation: All I Have To Give…

Hey guys!

Sorry that I have been missing in action for this past week. Lots of health issues plaguing me and my family so I had to handle business! Now that we are on the mend for the most part, I’ll be flooding your feeds once again. 🙂

I was scrolling through my Ipod awhile back and I came across the song, “All I Have to Give” by an artist called Mali Music. This was the first song I ever heard by this artist many many years ago and I instantly fell in love with it. The song is so simple, but the message so real!  I had an opportunity to meet Mali and sing as part of an opening act at a concert held in my city a few years back. He was so humble and down to earth!  He has since deviated from the gospel industry but this particular song will always hold a special place in my heart.

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Me and Mali Music after the show!

What does it actually mean to give your all?  To give your all simply means to put all your energy and time into a task or a person. To give completely of yourself, unselfishly with no holds barred.

Now, I have some great friends and family who I am quite certain would be ( and have been) there for me whenever I needed them, but even that has its limitations.

Speaking as a person who has entered into a relationship with Christ, sometimes as Christians we don’t give God our all .  It’s almost as if we use Him at our leisure or convenience expecting everything  from Him and giving less than our best in return.  Hmm, that doesn’t seem fair does it?  Put yourself at the short end of stick? How would you feel?

God has already given us the greatest gift when He sent His son Jesus Christ as a living sacrifice to atone for our sins. All He asks in return is that you love Him with all your heart, soul and mind.
Matthew 23:37 reads, Jesus replied: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.”

To love anything with you heart, soul and mind, you really have to commit to the process!

 The Heart: Proverbs 4:23 ( NLT) Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life. Keep your heart pure. Don’t harbour malice or hate. Love people as God loves people. Strive to have a heart of compassion as Christ does. Don’t let  life and it’s many follies turn your heart away from God.

The Soul: Matthew 16:26 (NLT)  “And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul?”  The last part of that scripture really resonates with me . Is anything worth more than your soul? I certainly don’t think so. Keep your soul aligned with God’s plan for your life. How you ask? Dig deeper into His word ( the bible) spend time in prayer and seek guidance and direction from the one who created you. 

The Mind: Romans 12:2 (NLT)  Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”  This world we live in  has so many distractions and things that can leer your off course. But learn to stand out and go against the grain! You don’t have to do what everybody is doing. Through Christ Jesus, you are a new person.Don’t let your mind be manipulated into deviating from the course set before you!

This song All I Have to Give, is truly a love song to God. The author ( Mali) proclaims that everything he has, he will offer to God and that his whole embodiment belongs to God.

That’s how I feel about God. If you haven’t had an opportunity to encounter God and build a relationship with Him, I pray you do! It’s truly a wonderful thing!

Take a listen to song and read the lyrics down below. I hope it blesses you like it has blessed me!

Have a blessed week!
xoxo

[Verse 1:]

Lord if I could buy you a gift to show you my love, tell you how I feel.
It wouldn’t matter what I’d have to give. I would find a way to get it for you.
But fortunately that’s not the case and we both know I don’t have bank anyway.
But I won’t let it affect my presentation to you ’cause this is what I bring…

[Chorus:]
Here is my heart, my mind, Lord here’s my life, my everything. Take it. It’s yours oh Lord.

[Verse 2:]
I’ll give you my all, my everything, every song that I write,
Every song that I sing, every day of my life, every breath that I breathe,
You gave to me and Lord I rededicate it right back to you. Love of my life, so faithful, so true.
I get goosebumps just thinking about you and there’s nothing I will not do for you so

[Chorus:]
Here is (my) my heart (yeah) my mind (Lord here’s my life)
Lord here’s my life (oh oh oh oh oh oh) my everything (yeah) take it (take it) it’s yours oh Lord It’s all I have
[Repeat chorus and end with “to give”]

[Bridge:]
I give you my best ’cause I love you… I’m yours
[Repeat chorus till fade]

 

Monday Motivation: The Storm is Over Now…

Monday Motivation: The Storm is Over Now…

Hey guys!

Busy week ahead so this will be a quick post! I was listening to some Judy Garland, “Somewhere over the Rainbow” and this post completely overtook what I was going to chat with you about today! Funny how that works right?

I don’t know if there is anyone out there who can actual feel a storm  coming. I have bad knees so I can feel a tingly sensation in my knees when a storm is on the way. I also sometimes suffer with migraines and if you have ever had a migraine, you know that an incoming storm only exacerbates the pain you feel. But once that storm passes by….. wow what a relief!

Such as with the storms of life. Before a storm (aka a bump in the road of life) happens you can usually feel something brewing. Then, the onset of the storm approaches. Things get dark and winds blow and showers plummet down. Sometimes when a storm rages your plans get ruined!( anybody ever been at a cookout and get rained out?… Yeah not fun)  But then after the storm subsides, peace and calm are restored and usually a sign that everything is going to be alright pops up. ( hello rainbow!)

Ahhh… the rainbow. The best thing after a storm for me is to see a beautiful rainbow in the sky .  Biblically , the rainbow served as a covenant ( promise) God made with Noah which promised that the world would not be destroyed with water ever again. ( Genesis 9:8-17) If that isn’t an expression of grace then I don’t know what is!

For me the rainbow serves as a reminder of the promise that God made with Noah many moons ago. After Noah weathered his storm ( literally), blessings were abundant. I’ve weathered many storms in my life that God has seen me through.

Keep faith that there is a rainbow at the end of your storm! You may be in the tempest of your storm. Your storm might be causing mass destruction in your life and the lives of those around you. You might not be able to see the end of your storm, but just know that God is in the midst of your storm. You may not know how to get out the storm you are in, but let God be the captain of your ship!

Storms last only a for a moment. You may have to pick up the pieces after the storm… but look up for your rainbow is on the horizon!!

God did it for Jonah
God did it for Noah.
He’ll do it for you!

The song, “The Storm is Over Now” by Kirk Franklin is so fitting today! The lyrics and song are down below.

Have a blessed week!
xoxo

It’s over now
it’s over now
i feel like i can make it
the storm is over nowIt’s over now
It’s over now
i feel like i can make it
the storm is over now

No more cloudly days
there all gone, gone away
i feel like i can make it
the storm is over now

no more cloudy days
there are gone away
i feel like i can make it
the storm is over now

If i walk alone
I’m not on my own
i feel like i can make it
the storm is over now

if i walk alone
i’m not on my own
i feel like i can make it
the storm is over now

Monday Motivation: Victory Belongs To Jesus…

Monday Motivation: Victory Belongs To Jesus…

Hey guys!

So another NBA season has come to an end, and I can honestly say that it was probably one of the most interesting playoff seasons I’ve watched  in a long time. Now, I wasn’t invested in any particular team this season as I am a true die-hard New York Knicks fan and if you follow basketball, you know…. we’ve had a rough couple of years (LOL) I refused to jump on the bandwagon of this Steph Curry vs Lebron James battle of this last series. I mean people who I know don’t watch basketball all season long were hyping up these guys to the max! I saw people engaging in conversation ( or arguments)  on who was the best player in the NBA, who deserves the championship, was it rigged etc…  Alas, the Cleveland Cavaliers were victorious and were crowned the Champions.

Hmm… victorious…. that word kept resonating in my spirit all day today. If there’s  one thing about being submissive to God, is that He always makes plain the message He is trying to send you.

I started a new devotional today on my YouVersion bible app. It’s a devotional written by gospel artist Todd Dulaney wherein he uses his songs in written inspiration and encouragement. After I finished reading today I pulled up his album and put it on shuffle and can you guess what song came on first?? It was “Victory Belongs To Jesus”. ( Sidenote: get this album folks. It’s amazing 🙂 )

Aha! Things were slowly beginning to make sense! Let’s break down what it means to be victorious. The word victorious means ” having won a victory; triumphant.” . What is a victory?  A victory is an act of defeating an enemy or opponent in a battle, game, or other competition ( dictionary.com) So then that must mean a victor is a person who defeats an enemy or opponent in a battle, game, or other competition.

We can definitely say that Lebron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers were victorious and are victors after last nights achievements. We can also say that Steph Curry  and the Golden State Warriors are also victors coming off their record breaking season. Many people look up to these gentlemen ( and they are most certainly deserving of all the accolades they receive) but other than provide entertainment…. what have they done for you? Sometimes I think we ( myself included) get caught up in the hype and place strong praise on people who are just as ordinary as you and I .

The song “Victory Belongs to Jesus”  really spoke to me today and helped shift things into perspective. It’s easy to say that Lebron won the championship yesterday based on his skill alone…. but then who enabled him with that skill? We are giving all the applause to Lebron, yet forgetting the person who destined those skills over his life. ( God)

God wins battles for us everyday that we don’t even see!I am a firm believer that our lives were planned before  we were even existence. Meaning, any hardships  that come our way, were already planned in a sense, but we can take comfort in knowing that we are not fighting our battles alone and that the One who is battling on our behalf  reigns victorious!

So in happy times, remember God is victorious!
In sad times, remember God is victorious!

In your smallest accomplishments or your greatest feats, the Victory always belongs to Jesus!

 

Take a listen to this song by Todd Dulaney and have a powerful, exuberant week!
xoxo

Who can stand against the Lord.
No one can, No one will.
Who can stand against the king.
No one can, No one will.

ohhh, ohhh, Victory Belongs To Jesus
Victory belongs to Him.

We put our trust in you.
We put our hope in you.

You will deliver,
you’re a provider
I find my victory in you.
Forever victorious, forever we win.
I find my victory in you.

Victory Belongs To Jesus
Victory belongs to Him

. ohhh, ohhh,

Victory Belongs To Jesus
Victory belongs to Him.

Monday Motivation: You+ Jesus Is Always Enough…

Monday Motivation: You+ Jesus Is Always Enough…

Happy Monday y’all!

This weekend I attended a Sunday church service at a different church than my local church. One statement that the minister made that really resonated with me was, ” You + Jesus is always enough” ( Pastor Tony Sawler- The Peoples Church)

That statement really got me thinking. So many people ( Christians and non- believers) are living a life full of insecurities. Society has placed so many expectations on us. Are we skinny enough? Is my skin too dark? Does this group of people like me and if not, what do I have do to to get them to like me? Do you know how many  times I have heard ( in regards to myself) “She’s really pretty for a black girl..” Wait… What??? I’m one of the lucky people who was blessed with high self esteem ( don’t get me wrong I have my days ) and have always had an amazing , loving,support system of friends and family who have never caused me to doubt my importance or value. I also I have a relationship with Christ that reminds me that because of Him I am always enough! Unfortunately, not everybody is like me…It’s truly a sad state of affairs to see young people literally losing their lives because of what people think or have said about them. ( think about how many young people have taken their lives because of cyber bullying) Be careful of what you say or post about someone on social media ( evident or “subliminal”) You never know what somebody could be going through and that one statement could literally send them over the edge….. I don’t know who that was for… but being obedient to the Holy Spirit I will write…. Be mindful of your words and actions… once they are out there you can never undo damage…  anyways… I digress…

Oftentimes, we place so much merit in what others think of us, that we forget that the one person we should actually be striving to please is Jesus!  Jesus is more than enough! That’s not to say that we should just ignore the world around us and not listen to what people have to say  about us. Sometimes, criticism is constructive. It’s actually meant to help you, not tear you down. ( I do believe its not in what you say sometimes, but it’s how you say it!)  However, with that being said,  take heed when listening to people share their opinion on you. The enemy has a sneaky way of slipping in and sending discouragement and distraction masked as good intent.. ( smh)

One scripture that comes to mind whenever I am faced with a moment of feeling insecure is Psalms 139:14 and it reads, 14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.

I do believe that we were created by God ( Genesis 1:27) and every good and perfect gift comes from God(James 1:17 ) I think we need to remember that we are gifts! Gifts are things to be treasured not discarded or mishandled.

Let’s take some time to remember that Jesus is more than enough! 

2 Corinthians 9:8 New Life Version (NLV) reads: 

God can give you all you need. He will give you more than enough. You will have everything you need for yourselves. And you will have enough left over to give when there is a need.

New Life Version (NLV)

You+ Jesus is what the young people ( lol I write young people as if I’m ancient 😛 )  call an OTP or One true pairing, two things that were just meant to be!

I challenge anyone who hasn’t tried life as a believer of Christ to try Him out! I mean, what do you really have to lose? Negative people? Unsolicited advice from people who don’t have your best interest at heart? Lose your insecurities and gain self- love and confidence? I think it’s worth a shot!

Jesus is more than enough for me! Because of Him, I never feel alone, unloved or unworthy! : )

I want to leave you with a song by Kari Jobe called ” Always Enough”
Be Blessed this week!!
xoxo

” I will find my life in you, You’re always enough…”