Wednesday Weekly Reads: March 25, 2015

Wednesday Weekly Reads: March 25, 2015

Hey y’all!

I hope you’ve had a successful reading week! Mine was! But not in the sense of the number of books I managed to complete; but in what I realized about myself as a reader. I have always been a super quick reader, usually able to finish a pretty lengthy book in a day or two. But as I’ve gotten older, and my schedule has changed, I’ve found that I just don’t have an hour or two a day to really delve into a story. That used to really bother me. I thought I was losing my knack for reading! However, this week I realized that was not the case! I have just learned how to take my time and savor a book, pay attention to the writing and really try to decipher the message the author is trying to relay.

So this week, I took time to do that,and that meant I didn’t complete one full book! I did manage to get through most of, “Jesus Is” by Judah Smith. This is a book you can’t just breeze through. You have to take time to study with this book because it literally forces you to determine who “Jesus is” to you and His significance in your life ! Beautifully written and very engaging. This book will be finished this week! I am determined!

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Next, I was going to pick up “Finding Me” by Michelle Knight. I didn’t get a chance to so I’m putting it back on the list for this week!

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This week I would like to complete these two books. Both of them are pretty heavy in content so I will only one other book I will add to the list. It’s a book I started about 2 trips to New York ago and that was at least a year ago (lol). It’s by one of my favorite authors K’wan and its called “The Fix”. The synopsis on amazon.com reads:

What would you do if you felt like you were dying and the only thing that could save you was the very thing that was killing you?
Persia Chandler doesn’t know the meaning of the world struggle. After the arrest of her notorious father, she is whisked away from Harlem, the only place she has ever called home, to be raised in an affluent neighborhood in Long Island City. Her mother and stepfather shower her with the best that life has to offer. During her senior year in high school, she convinces her parents to let her transfer from Catholic school to attend public school. That is the start of her problems–but it’s hardly the end.
In her new school, Persia is reunited with the friends she was forced to move away from, and starts to drift further and further from the life her mother and stepfather have built for her. To the sheltered Persia, the Harlem underworld is like one big adventure. Things promise to get even more interesting when she starts dating a dealer named Chucky. He introduces her to his world of sex, money, and drugs, dragging Persia along with him on a long and bitter ride into the bowels of addiction.

I’m already about 100 pages into this story so i should finish this up by tomorrow or Friday ๐Ÿ™‚ and I just saw online that there is a sequel out so you know I’m going to pick that upย and add that to my future reading list! ๐Ÿ™‚

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Have a wonderful reading week guys!!

xoxo

Monday Motivation: Living Through Your Situations

Monday Motivation: Living Through Your Situations

Have you ever looked at your situation and wondered,”Why me?”. I know I have especially at the start of this year. ย But, this year I’ve decided and challenged myself to look at my situations with the attitude of, “Why not me??!!” ย I decided to call 2015 : The year of Purity: Pure Heart, Pure Mind, and Pure Spirit.

The pure heart aspect is really the main reason I titled my blog “Just love them anyway”. People will always let you down,break your spirit, damage you emotionally and cause you to falter spiritually… if you let them! This year, I’m not going to let them ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m going to keep my heart pure and just “love them anyway”.IMG_5222

Pure mind ties in with pure heart. When your heart is unclean, your thoughts will soon follow. There’s a quote that goes something like this: “What others think of me is none of my business.” Not everybody is going to like you, and that’s okay! Once I learned to be okay with that, life became so much easier. Not that you should be a nasty,mean-spirited person and shun and completely disregard people’s thoughts or opinions… Just stop putting so much merit into what they think! Like one of my favorite YouTube vloggers , Shameless Maya says, ” Do YOU BOO! ๐Ÿ™‚

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Shameless Maya; Check her out on YouTube

The third part, Pure Spirit, pulls it all together. Once you have made the commitment to live with a pure heart and a pure mind, It becomes easier to draw in a spiritual aspect. Renewing my commitment with God, and striving to live a life that is pleasing to God, is again my goal this year.

Sometimes we spend so much time complaining and not enough time giving thanks! I finished a book this past week called,” The 72 Hour Hold” by Bebe Moore Campbell. ( It was a book in my last Wednesday Weekly Reads blog ย and was on my list of books to read in 2015: check out those blogs here:

https://justlovethemanyway.wordpress.com/2015/02/25/wednesday-weekly-reads/

https://justlovethemanyway.wordpress.com/2015/02/03/my-2015-to-be-read-list/

Umm…why did I wait so long to read this book??? It was so insightful into the true face of mental illness and how it affects not only the ill but all those who surround them. I won’t divulge too much in this blog post,but check back on Wednesday for a full review ๐Ÿ™‚

However there was a quote in the book that really hit me. I mean it was a real aha moment. The quote reads: ” You can’t always beat what is difficult in your life. Sometimes you have to let it win and shout Hallelujah anyhow..” Okay…. wow. Just wow…

Situations will always arise in your life. Good,Bad and Ugly. Some, you will be able to bounce back from quickly and others may take a little time. Some situations will drastically change your life and you may find yourself in a rut you just can’t seem to get out of. However, it is important to change your mindset of your situation. If you let your situation control you,you’ll never overcome it. Easier said than done! How can you not let your situation control you? This is what I find works for me:

  • Change Your Atmosphere: Don’t stay in the same place, wallowing in your sorrows. Get up out of that room, go for a walk, take a vacation (if your finances allow,) take a day trip somewhere , go to a library or a farmers market, do anything but sitting and dwelling on your problems.
  • Change your Attitude: If you keep an attitude of,”Woe is me” your life will always resonate the air of woe is you! As bad as your situation may be ( and im not discrediting anyones situation) someone out there has it worse!
  • Change Your Crew: Surround yourself with people who uplift you not drag you down. The quote, “Show me your friends and I’ll tell you who you are is true. Find a core group of people to keep your spirits up when you are at your lowest. Find a group of people who will bring out the “best you” when you don’t feel at your best.
  • Find your passion: One of the best ways to channel positive energy into your situations, is to become involved in activities that invigorate you. Write a blog :), get involved with your community, paint, draw, whatever it is that you love just do it!
  • Take care of you: If you don’t take care of yourself, you physically won’t be able to handle whatever situation comes your way. Drink lots of water, eat balanced meals, exercise, get lots of rest
  • Finally the main thing I do to get through my situation is PRAY! Talking to God always fills me with a sense of peace that no matter how bleak the situation may seem, someway somehow, things will all work out.

Some scriptures that I have been holding super close to my heart this year are:

1 Corinthians 16:13-14, (New Living Translation)ย Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous.Be strong. And do everything with love.

Philippians 2:14-16 (New Living Translation)

14ย Do everything without complaining and arguing, 15ย so that no one can criticize you. Live clean, innocent lives as children of God, shining like bright lights in a world full of crooked and perverse people. 16ย Hold firmly to the word of life; then, on the day of Christโ€™s return, I will be proud that I did not run the race in vain and that my work was not useless.

Sidenote: I grew up in a predominantly Jamaican pentecostal church and my children’s ministry workers forced us to learn a song derived from this verse and I actually found it on YouTube LOL! Keep in mind this is a song i heard for the first time over 20 years ago ๐Ÿ™‚

I refuse to let my situations control me. As bad as it may be, it could be a heck of a lot worse! Instead I choose to let God take full control of my situations and let Him work them out! Have a blessed Monday guys!

This weeks song reflection is: Give Me by Kirk Franklin( feat. Mali Music)

xoxo

Freedom!

Freedom!

As black history month draws to a close let’s just take a moment to reflect and give thanks for our freedoms. Here in North America we are free to worship God without prejudice and express ourselves without persecution. Many others in various parts of the world don’t have the same freedoms that we do. Women in many parts of the world, don’t have the liberty to live freely…. I hope that one day we will all share the same freedoms we all at times take for granted.

“And when this happens, and when we allow freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual:

ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย  Free at last! Free at last!

ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย ย  Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!ย ย 

I’m blessed! Not only am I physically free, but I’m free in Christ Jesus! Let Freedom Ring!!

xoxo

Selma Is Now….

Selma Is Now….

Yesterday I watched the Oscars….they were super boring to me this year. I love Neil Patrick Harris, however I find his Oscar hosting performance to have fallen lackluster. It was very ” How I Met Your Mother”. Don’t get me wrong I loved that show,I just don’t know if that time of humour really resonated with the caliber of the Oscar crowd.

Let’s briefly talk about the fashion. There were some beautiful pieces, but there wasn’t anything that really blew me away. However these three dress caught my attention on the red carpet. Nothing phenomenal, but nevertheless three dresses that I would definitely wear.

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Emma Stone is wearing Elie Saab.
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Gwyneth Paltrow is wearing Ralph & Russo Couture
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Reese Witherspoon is wearing Tom Ford.

The glitz and the glamour of the Oscars are always fun to watch, but this year all of that was overshadowed by a single performance. John Legend and Common’s rendition of their Oscar-winning Song of the Year “Glory”, moved the entire auditorium ( and myself!) to tears and leaping to their feet. Check ย out the lyrics to the song and watch the performance here:

One day when the glory comes

It will be ours, it will be ours

One day when the war is won

We will be sure, we will be sure
Oh glory

Hands to the Heavens, no man, no weapon
Formed against, yes glory is destined
Every day women and men become legends
Sins that go against our skin become blessings
The movement is a rhythm to us
Freedom is like religion to us
Justice is juxtapositionin’ us
Justice for all just ain’t specific enough
One son died, his spirit is revisitin’ us
Truant livin’ livin’ in us, resistance is us
That’s why Rosa sat on the bus
That’s why we walk through Ferguson with our hands up
When it go down we woman and man up
They say, “Stay down”, and we stand up
Shots, we on the ground, the camera panned up
King pointed to the mountain top and we ran up

Now the war is not over, victory isn’t won
And we’ll fight on to the finish, then when it’s all done
We’ll cry glory, oh glory
We’ll cry glory, oh glory

Selma is now for every man, woman and child
Even Jesus got his crown in front of a crowd
They marched with the torch, we gon’ run with it now
Never look back, we done gone hundreds of miles
From dark roads he rose, to become a hero
Facin’ the league of justice, his power was the people
Enemy is lethal, a king became regal
Saw the face of Jim Crow under a bald eagle
The biggest weapon is to stay peaceful
We sing, our music is the cuts that we bleed through
Somewhere in the dream we had an epiphany
Now we right the wrongs in history
No one can win the war individually
It takes the wisdom of the elders and young people’s energy
Welcome to the story we call victory
Comin’ of the Lord, my eyes have seen the glory

I bawled like a big ol’ baby when I saw that performance and I continued to bawl when they won their Oscar and John delivered these words in their acceptance speech:

“Selma is now,” Legend began. “The struggle for justice is now. The Voting Rights Act that they fought for fifty years ago is being compromised right now in this country today. Right now the struggle for justice is real. We live in the most incarcerated country in the world. There are more black men under correctional control today than were under slavery in 1850. When people march with our song, we want to tell you: we see you, we are with you, we love you, and march on.”

He’s right. ย 50 years after that monumental march,people are being persecuted and targeted ย everyday because of the colour of their skin. Not only the colour of their skin but their gender, religion and class or status. If we look at it, not that much has changed in 50 years… sad but true. Yes, we are no longer physical slaves, but we have now become slaves to our minds, slaves to society and slaves to ourselves.

We owe it to Dr King to take up the mantle and continue the fight for justice. Not only for ourselves, but for the generations to come. Let’s not let his ( and the work of countless others) go in vain… Selma is now! March on!

xoxo