Sugar Detox Plan Part 2

Sugar Detox Plan Part 2

Sugar Detox Plan Part 2
— Read on empress2inspire.blog/2020/12/29/sugar-detox-plan-part-2/

Hey People,

Here’s Part 2 of the Sugar Detox post – the first was pretty helpful. The second is equally so. Thanks to #empress2impress.blog. Please visit the site for more helpful tips. 

Happy detoxing!

Monday Financial Nuggets: Earl Nightingale’s Checklists

youtube.com/watch

The above Earl Nightingale’s video has been popping up for a while. I finally watched it and what a goldmine! Please watch till the end as I believe that the platinum nuggets lie within the 5-7 final minutes of the video.

Haves and have nots. The have nots always begrudge the haves! (p.s. Tyler Perry has a series with this title. The only series that I have watched religiously in the last ten years! Love it. Check it out on OWN. You can also find various streams on YouTube.)

Why do few manage to be financially well-off in a country where success is available?


Statistics

  • 10% of men 65 years and older have income of $6,000 a year; >80% of all men >65 have income of $4,000 a year
  • Starting a career in your 20s, would mean you would have worked >40 years at retirement. Using a meagre $25,000 per year salary, (a paltry in this tech age), means you would have made >$1 million. How much of this was saved or invested?
  • Only about 10% will be financially secure when the age of 65 rolls around.

Questions to ask yourself

  • What are you doing at the present time to increase your income now?
  • How much do you want to earn?
  • How much money are you planning to be worth at age 65?

Constructive thinking on the above questions is necessary for change in how much you earn.

Big income earners made the decision to earn more. Have you? Will and when would you?

Analogies:

  • A woman who does not think about baking an apple pie for dinner tonight will not think of looking up a recipe for apple pie. Without the decision for pie, there’s no motivation for checking out the recipe. Likewise,
  • A man who does not think about driving his car to St Louis MI or Nacogdoches TX will never make the decision to get roadmaps that will help him get there. Therefore,
  • A man who never decides to earn more money will never think of learning how or looking up the rules for making more money.

Lifestyle Quotes

It’s a free country; anyone has the inalienable right to be just as wrong as they want to be!

We must view with profound respect the infinite capacity of the human mind to resist the inroads of useful knowledge. – Thomas Lounsbury

Knowledge is available to everyone. We can either listen to those qualified to teach us or we can go along with those ancient stumbling blocks we get from people who don’t know any more than we do.

. . .

A jet pilot goes over his checklist item-by-item before a takeoff from the airport and before he lands at his destination. Living successfully is just as important as flying an airplane.

. . .

Checklist

  1. Our rewards in life will always be an exact proportion to our contribution our service. (Similarly regarding JOB: The money you’re paid by the company you work for will always be in direct ratio to the need for what you do, your ability to do it, and the degree of difficulty involved in replacing you.)
  1. The gold mine. “The only thing about a man that is a man is his mind; everything else you can find in a pig or a horse.” – Archibald MacLeish. The key to any man’s success is his mind!
  • How many good ideas have you come up with in the past year?
  • Are you being a copycat or following the follower?
  • Whose drum are you marching to?
  • Do you want to be a contributor or a beneficiary?

3. Attitude. Alter your life by altering your attitudes of mind. (We become what we think about!) – Williams James

Think. Start getting up one hour earlier than you’re accustomed to. One hour earlier a day gives you 6 1/2 40-hour week a year. Take a refreshing shower, dress, have a hot cup of coffee (or tea) and then sit down with a clean sheet of paper. At the top of the paper, write your financial goal which is the amount of money per year you intend to earn soon. Then start to think; think about your goal and see how many ideas you can come up with to help you reach that goal; ideas to improve what you now do for a living, ways of increasing your contribution to match your income goal . . .

Cheers to a strategically financially you in 2021!

Jesus Ministry: Disturbing Prophetic Words

I don’t know about you, but I have been terribly disturbed by the multitude of “prophetic words“ given pre-the-Presidential election by several men and women of God categorically stating that God told (or showed) them that Donald Trump will serve a second term as President of the USA. But now this is not so. What happened? Let’s reason together.

Who is a Prophet / Prophetess?

Briefly, a Prophet/Prophetess is a man/woman chosen by God to speak on His behalf to His people and He, God, uses several ways to communicate through the chosen people. It is also the second office in the hierarchy of church governance. Another blog will be necessary to expatiate on the Prophet/Prophetess. Selected scripture references of the Prophet are:

  • Hosea 12:10,
  • Amos 3:7,
  • 1 Corinthians 14:32-33,
  • Jeremiah 28:8-9,
  • Matthew 10-41, 24:10-13,
  • Ezekiel 13:4-10,
  • Ephesians 2:20, 4:11-16,
  • Deuteronomy 17:15, 34:12,
  • Luke 1:70,
  • Hebrews 1:1, etc.).

The Presidential Prophetic Words

There were tons of prophetic words from “reputable” American Christian leaders all-round. Do a Google and/or a YouTube Search to view them. But now that Joe Biden’s win has been ratified, and will be sworn-in in ten days, the questions raging in my head are:

  • what happened?!”
  • were the leaders “calling those things that be not as though they were?” (Romans 4:17c) Or
  • did Trump’s attitudes and behavior canceled him out of the prophetic words?” (Jeremiah 18:7-11)

If God said it …

Any of the above is possible. But, God is not a man that He should lie …, right? If God said it, it must surely come to pass. (Numbers 23:19) Or that if God indeed said it, it might be a timing issue and probably Trump could run again (if not impeached) and win?! (Habakkuk 2:3). Or still, God probably said it, but the people negated it which is equally more disturbing as I am reminded of King Saul and King David! Lord have mercy!!

If God never said it …

However, if God didn’t say it, why did the prophets and prophetesses deliver their own words as God’s? (Jeremiah 23:26; Deuteronomy 18:20-22). Deuteronomy 18:20 states that the “prophet shall die.” It is scary. I do not wish any dead but it is so scary that one who reads his/her Bible should fear giving a false word. Please note that this does not necessarily mean a physical death. It could mean a spiritual death as in no more revelations flowing to and from the prophet. God is the ultimate decider. I sincerely hope that those prophets/prophetesses, if they indeed gave a personal word as God’s word, are already repenting. God is still a merciful God and I pray that He has mercy on them.

Where’s the fear of God?

I don’t know about you but it bothers me that the “reputable” men and women of God could have jeopardized their characters for allegedly delivering a word not from God. How do we now continue to believe them or their prophetic words?! Why would they do so?

This is the main reason why we all should endeavor not to be lazy and to hear God for ourselves by reading, studying, and meditating on the Word of God daily and allowing the Spirit of God to minister to our spirit.

Is’t possible for one to be canceled out of a prophetic word?

According to Jeremiah 18:10, it is possible. Please read the scripture. Better yet, read the before and after verses for better understanding. Though the verse refers to a nation, I propose to you that it is equally applicable to individuals and/or families. We should therefore be careful, mindful, and watchful to not veer off the right/righteous paths once a prophetic word is given. It is also important to “war” for the divine timing and manifestation of any prophetic word.

Does giving a wrong word make one a false prophet?

No according to Romans 11:29. I propose, that the lure of personal and presidential favors and/or desire to be in the limelight might have propelled the men/women of God to give their personal word. But still I do not know. Only God and them can tell us. However, I do know that going forward, I will continue to be cautious receiving prophetic words. How about you?

May God forgive and have mercy.

Fasting and Understanding its Power

youtube.com/watch

Understanding the Power of Fasting video

. . .

I have wanted to blog on Fasting and, again, the beginning of the New Year is a good time to post the topic. Not that fasting is only done at the beginning of a New Year. Far from it! Fasting can be done anytime and for various reasons/causes.

There is nothing I could post or share however that will surpass the above video by late Dr. Myles Munroe. Please watch and form your own conclusion.

. . .


What is Fasting?


According to Dr. Myles Munroe, Fasting is

  • the willful abstinence from natural pleasures for a spiritual purpose;
  • it is a personal commitment to renounce the natural to invoke the spiritual;
  • it is the dedication to a period of time to devote oneself to spiritual priority of prayer without food.

Fasting is like a plunger. Food is a clog in a pipe – the more you eat, the smaller the hole in the pipe. Fasting unclogs the pipe.

Fasting puts your body where it ought to be; that is, under your spirit.

Effects of Fasting

  1. It changes you
  2. It does not move God
  3. It increases your spiritual capacity
  4. It breaks habits and spiritual bondage
  5. It quiets the heart to hear God’s voice/mind and calms your spirit
  6. It brings godly intimacy
  7. It speeds up healing.

Fasting Scriptures

  • Esther 4:16
  • Psalm 109:24-25,
  • Jeremiah 18:7-11, 36:9,
  • Daniel 9:2-3,
  • Joel 2:12-13

Fasting is not dieting

*** Disclaimer ***

Please consult your physician before embarking on a fast.

Are you a People Pleaser?

Credits: Vanessa Van Edwards

Are you a people pleaser and would rather please everyone rather than yourself or God? Are you afraid to say ‘NO?’ Are you “too nice or too agreeable?” Do you allow everyone to walk all over you? “Are you desperate to gain other people’s approval while neglecting your own needs?” If you answer ‘Yes’ to any or all, you are a people pleaser. See also Amy Morin s ten (10) signs of a people pleaser.

Morin described a people pleaser as “someone who tries hard to make others happy. They will often go out of their way to please someone, even if it means taking their own valuable time or resources away from them. People pleasers often act the way they do because of their insecurities and lack of self-esteem.” Also, there are underlying issues (such as feelings of unworthiness, molestation, rape, to name a few) that are being suppressed that enables a person to become a people pleaser.

. . .

God’s Word says that

“If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men.”
‭‭Romans‬ ‭12:18‬ ‭KJV‬‬

Living peaceably with all however does not equate turning oneself into a doormat for every Tom and Harry or Jane and Sally to wipe their feet all over you; does it?

It’s all right to be agreeable with all and to be perceived as a peacemaker/keeper, but wanting to be so to your own detriment is not okay. “Some people don’t know how to say ‘NO’”. Is that really true? Maybe they just don’t know how to say ‘NO’ to some people. I have noticed that these kind of people end up taking their anger or aggression out on the wrong people in their lives such as a spouse or their children. They have said ‘YES’ to everyone else and don’t have any left for the very special people in their lives. They end up hurting the ones they ought not to hurt! I call it misplaced priority.

Amy Morin states that “You’ll never reach your goals if you’re trying to be all things to all people … often than not, people-pleasing wasn’t really their problem; their desire to make others happy was merely a symptom of a deeper issue.

For many, the eagerness to please stems from self-worth issues. They hope that saying yes to everything asked of them will help them feel accepted and liked. Other people-pleasers have a history of maltreatment, and somewhere along the way, they decided that their best hope for better treatment was to try to please the people who mistreated them. Over time, for them, people-pleasing became a way of life.”

Are you a people pleaser? Take the test here to find out!

. . .

We all will, at some point in our lives, please people. But I hope that the times we do/did were only as a choice not an obligation.

In the New Year, I implore you to choose whom you will please – yourself, other people, or God. Pleasing people often hurts us, but pleasing God categorizes you/us as His favorite. Choose wisely this New Year whom you’ll please.

If you are a people pleaser and need help stopping , click here to read Vanessa Van Edwards’ eleven (11) helpful tips.

Caring for one another: 10 things you can do to show you care

Credits: Bible.com / (C) ThinkTalk

Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around.

Leo Buscaglia

In a world where everyone is in a rush, where everything needed to have been done and completed yesterday, and where microwaving is preferred to stoving, it takes a real human to pause and care for another.

Most of us don’t pause to know who our neighbor is. I once lived in a neighborhood where it took damage to my neighbor’s fence for her to acknowledge that she had someone living next door. We had been neighbors for six years and never saw each other though I attempted to introduce myself a few times to no avail! I know it sounds ridiculous … I could have ignored her when she finally came knocking, but I seized the opportunity to express my feelings. Happens that she’s a registered nurse (RN) and works the night shift; so our days/times were anti.

Still no excuses – six years is a long time. We can either justify or be intentional about caring. When we justify why we can’t, guess what, we will never. But, it is greatly appreciated when one steps out to care despite one’s busy schedule,

. . .

It really doesn’t take much to check on one another. It’s both humane and a great safety measure. For example, I will not be able to differentiate between an intruder and a true guest if I did not know who my neighbor is. We’ve heard incidents happen that otherwise could have been averted had folks stopped to care.

Yes, you have projects that need to be completed;
Yes, you need to fulfill that mega-dollar contract; and,
Yes, you’re on the go for the next (fill-in-the-blank),
But, before you set off, let someone know that you care and love them. You might just put a smile on their face and hope in their heart.

This is particularly essential for children. A hug, caring eyes, a smile, look that shows that they are the most important to you, is paramount for their development, helps build up their self esteem, and grounds them securely in the knowledge of who they are.

There are tons of ways that we can care, but here are my top Ten (10).

  1. A hug. My daughter told me that a 22-second hug releases endorphins 😊 This was confirmed by Healthline (https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-increase-endorphins) “When released, endorphins can help relieve pain, reduce stress, and may cause a euphoric feeling. In short, they can make you feel pretty darn good.”
  2. A smile costs the giver nothing but is everything to the receiver.
  3. Saying “I love you” should never be rationed nor justified. Because you said it in the morning doesn’t mean that you must withhold it at night, or yesterday and withhold tomorrow. Neither should love ever be justified. Love just because!
  4. Listen with intent to understand. Everyone likes to talk, but it takes the special few to actively listen. Be one of those special fews.
  5. Affirm - your love, loyalty, support, etc. daily.
  6. A phone call. Pick up your phone and make the call instead of texting. Hearing the voice gladdens the heart that no texting can replicate.
  7. A note - slip one into your children’s bag or a book (or Bible) that you know they’ll read on that day or in your significant other’s jacket or wallet.
  8. Send occasional flowers or plants without waiting for a special occasion such as anniversary or birthdays.
  9. Order a meal or two for delivery to your loved one(s). This gives them a break and is appreciated more during Covid-19.
  10. Do random acts of kindness; for example, offer to run an errand for them, walk with them or walk their dog, help take their children out to the park or to watch a movie.

Many display love and caring only after a person is gone (as in dead!). Let’s display the affections now, in the present. Who knows – it might just extend the lives of our loved ones.

I’ll end with

Beginning today, treat everyone you meet as if they were going to be dead by midnight. Extend to them all the care, kindness and understanding you can muster, and do it with no thought of any reward. Your life will never be the same again.

Og Mandino

Love & Peace!

Never give up

The past week was hectic but I’m glad that it’s over now – mission accomplished! I’m choosing to relax/rest a bit this week, and gradually get back to work.

Did someone ask why my personal week was hectic? Thanks for caring 😊

I moved; moved from one region to another – like from north to south (or is’t west to east?) Pardon me, I am not the brightest as far as geography or navigation is concerned. I’m one of those who always rely on the navigator irrespective of the numerous times I’d driven or gone anywhere.

Anyways, moving is a work! You never realize how much stuff you’ve accumulated over the period. But moving also grant you the opportunity to donate your excesses to Goodwill or the Red Cross or any other organization that needs your items or even to family members. But, once settled down, we begin to accumulate again.

Credits: Oxford Dictionary

I really don’t like the term “empty nester.” But since my children have left home, it was an opportunity to relocate. But having lived in one locality so long, it was not an easy decision choosing a new location. What if you buy a home and you don’t like the new area? The thought gave me sleepless nights. I decided to test out the area by renting first to familiarize myself with the new region and locality.

I dedicated couple of weeks driving around a few neighborhoods. I finally chose one. Then the search began. What appeared fun and promising at first seemed to turn to futility after the first month with not securing a place. There was always something off with the places we looked at. Then I found “the perfect one!” I was excited as I completed and submitted all paperworks. Then the agent who was helping took a couple of days off. I got a phone call from another lady from the office who stated that none of my documents were received. I resent them, but all hopes were dashed as she kept asking for more “unnecessary” docs! To shorten the story, I eventually had to tell them that I was no longer interested. That was in September.

I continued the search but found nothing comparable to the one I had initially chosen. Then I took a break from searching.

I returned to the place again after Thanksgiving to see if it was still available. I was surprised that it was and I re-applied, Surprisingly, this time around, the process was fast and completed within three days! Not only that, the rent was lower than the first time and they had a special which they didn’t have then.

The morale of sharing this is to remind us all never to give up – if at first you do not succeed, try again! Often what appears to be a denial could be a divine delay or a timing issue where God has better things in stock. May this season bring you the greatest stocks ever.

The D-Day has come and gone – 2

Credits: NBC

[Last paragraph from the previous post:]

The Constitution of the United States of America states that “the results won’t be official until each state fully canvasses and certifies its presidential election results, which occurs on a different timeline in every state.” The Electoral College has to declare the Presidential winner after the electors vote on December 14. The votes have also been recounted and, yes, some have reaffirmed Joe Biden as the winner. But it’s not final until the Electoral College’s proclamation and Donald Trump’s concession. All eyes and ears will be fixed on December 14.

But, wait a minute.

. . .

Did anyone think

Did anyone think to ask “why has the Associated Press (AP) declared Joe Biden and Kamala Harris the winner; replicating and reiterating Hilary Clinton’s victory presumptuously in 2016?!”

But, wait a minute

What if …

What if, come December 14, the Electoral College, after casting their votes, reverses the presumed JB-KH victory?

What if this was all to teach Donald Trump a lesson in humility? Okay, yay, YOU can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but GOD can.

But, what if truly the alleged fraud was detected? What if the Electoral College’s vote on December 14 overturns the presently assumed winner? How would we all handle it? Undoubtedly, we cannot as a nation afford another unrest. I pray that there will be peace irrespective of the outcome.

What if we all said though Donald Trump does not deserve my vote, I’m willing to give him another chance? Hey, don’t shut me down – I’m just a messenger.

Several other what-if scenarios, but that’s not the point of this post.

. . .

The D-Day has come and gone; yet the presidency (or is’t the President) is still hanging, and the presumed winner Joe Biden is already selecting his proposed cabinet.

. . .

The Point is …

The point of this post is to actually reveal ourselves to ourselves! How hard-hearted everyone has been towards Mr. (Incumbent President) Donald Trump. Or is’t a matter of politicking at its best (or worst depending on your view!)

Two wrongs not a right make! We all, on one hand, profess good, love, forgiveness, positivity, and whatever lingo we profess it by. But with a swift turnaround are quick to throw stones and crucify!

God help and deliver us all!!!

Credits: Bible.com / ThinkTalk

More pondering

Why hate one another so? Or rather, why hate on Donald Trump so?

Would you be glad if someone gave you another chance?

Would we rather be the Good Samaritan or the neighbor who refuses to answer his door when you knocked at 3:00 A.M.?

When you’re in trouble or in need, would you want at least one person coming to your aid?

When everyone wrongfully accuses you, how would you feel if at least one person stands out and up for you?

Could all that happened had been a case of good versus evil and Donald Trump wrestling with spiritual wickedness?!

Ponder on these defying moments for a second.

May there always be a rescuer in our time of need. Let us all pay it forward.

. . .

If you’ve ever been in dire straits you’ll understand Donald Trump’s dilemma. Did I hear you say “he asked for or caused it?”

“He who is without sin, let him cast the first stone!” 

John 8:7b

If you’ve ever been in a place where everyone who was your friend turned against you for no cause or course!

  • A place where everyone and everything lied against you for no cause or course!
  • A place where everything you easily did suddenly became a chore!
  • A place where no-one, including your family, knows you any more – you’ve become a mystery to all
  • A place where your life defies a cause-and-effect scenario.
  • A place where it’s all confusion for one who’s known to be orderly.
  • A place where it’s just you and God!

A place, just you and God, is always a great place to be. It’s a place where all your questions get answered. A place where all doubts are eroded and all negatives are turned to positives. It’s a place where even the prophets dare not to tread and all intelligence, clout, or moolah are silenced. A place where the storms keep still!

Get in there and cry out to Him. He will meet you there and give you solutions that only He can!

Peace!

Californians and November 3rd

In less than a week, Californians have decisions to make in addition to deciding whether to join the nation next Tuesday, November 3rd, on who to choose as President for the next four years. It is a critical voting year. As such, unprecedented numbers of voters, more than ever before, have already trooped out to vote.

To-date, “more than 64 million Americans have already voted — and about half of them are in the dozen or so competitive states that will ultimately decide who wins the Electoral College.

The following are Californians’ State and Local Ballot Measures. ThinkTalk hopes that, in addition to your own due diligences, it helps you to be better informed.

  • Proposition 14, the Stem Cell Research Institute Bond – This initiative would issue $5.5 billion in general obligation bonds for the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine (CIRM), which was created to fund stem cell research.
  • Proposition 15, Tax on Commercial and Industrial Properties for Education and Local Government Funding – This initiative would tax certain commercial and industrial real property based on fair-market value—rather than, under current law, the purchase price with limited inflation. Exempts agricultural property and certain small businesses.
  • Proposition 16, Repeal of the Ban on Affirmative Action at Public Institutions – This amendment would repeal provisions in the state’s Constitution that prohibit the state from discriminating against, or granting preferential treatment to, any individual or group on the basis of race, sex, color, ethnicity, or national origin in the operation of public employment, public education, or public contracting. The California Constitution defines the state for these purposes to include the state, any city, county, public university system, community college district, school district, special district, or any other political subdivision or governmental instrumentality of, or within, the state. This measure would repeal these provisions. The measure would also make a statement of legislative findings in this regard.
  • Proposition 17, Restores Voting Rights for Persons on Parole – This initiative would amend the state Constitution to restore voting rights to persons who have been disqualified from voting while serving a prison term as soon as they complete their prison term—essentially extending the right to vote to those on state parole. Proposition 17 is a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment that requires a simple majority (50% + 1) to pass.
  • Proposition 18, Primary Voting for 17-Year-Olds – This amendment would give 17 year olds the right to vote beginning in the next general election cycle.
  • Proposition 19, Changes Certain Property Tax Rules for Certain Property Owners – This initiative would allow homeowners who are over 55, disabled, or wildfire/disaster victims to transfer their primary residence tax base to a new residence, change taxation of family property transfers, and establish a fire protection services fund.
  • Proposition 20, Criminal Sentencing, Parole, and DNA Collection – This initiative would impose restrictions on parole program for non-violent offenders who have completed the full term for their primary offense. Expands list of offenses that disqualify an inmate from this parole program.
  • Proposition 21, Expand Local Governments’ Authority to Enact Rent Control – This initiative would amend state law to allow local governments to establish rent control on residential properties over 15 years old. It would allow rent increases on rent-controlled properties of up to 15% over three years from previous tenant’s rent above any increase allowed by local ordinance. It would exempt individuals who own no more than two homes from new rent-control policies.
  • Proposition 22, Changes Employment Classification Rules for App-Based Transportation and Delivery Drivers – This initiative would establish different criteria for determining whether app-based transportation (rideshare) and delivery drivers are “employees” or “independent contractors.” Independent contractors are not entitled to certain state-law protections afforded employees—including minimum wage, overtime, unemployment insurance, and workers’ compensation. Instead, companies with independent contractor drivers will be required to provide specified alternative benefits, including: minimum compensation and healthcare subsidies based on engaged driving time, vehicle insurance, safety training, and sexual harassment policies.
  • Proposition 23, Changes Dialysis Clinic Requirements – This initiative would require at least one licensed physician on site during treatment at outpatient kidney dialysis clinics. It would require clinics to report dialysis-related infection data to state and federal governments. It would prohibit clinics from discriminating against patients based on the source of payment for care.
  • Proposition 24, Amends Consumer Privacy Laws – This initiative would permit consumers to: (1) prevent businesses from sharing personal information; (2) correct inaccurate personal information; and (3) limit businesses’ use of “sensitive personal information”—such as precise geolocation; race; ethnicity; religion; genetic data; union membership; private communications; and certain sexual orientation, health, and biometric information. Changes criteria for which businesses must comply with these laws. Prohibits businesses’ retention of personal information for longer than reasonably necessary. Triples maximum penalties for violations concerning consumers under age 16. Establishes California Privacy Protection Agency to enforce and implement consumer privacy laws, and impose administrative fines.
  • Proposition 25, Replaces Cash Bail with Risk Assessments – This ballot measure would prevent a 2018 law that replaces the money bail system with a system for pretrial release from jail based on a determination of public safety or flight risk, and limits pretrial detention for most misdemeanors from going into effect.

California Local Ballot Measures

References for these compilations are from:

  1. https://www.californiachoices.org/ballot-measures-2020-11
  2. https://www.stateside.com/election/2020-state-and-local-ballot-measures
  3. https://ballotpedia.org/wiki/index.php?search=Proposition+15&searchToken=2wofvgqmg70vx51zyd1mtm7fo
  4. https://voterguide.sos.ca.gov/propositions/

Thanks for reading; liking, and sharing. We hope that Americans, and particularly Californians, will get out to vote, or mail-in their votes on/before November 3rd.

Real friends: 5 Things They Are And Are Not

I stated in my earlier post, Pyramid of Friendship, that the issue of friends/friendships has been togging at my heart. I’ve had to deal with some folks lately on the issue too. Some things that we assume are no-brainers surprisingly have been loosely handled and often misinterpreted. Friends and friendships fall into one of these things.

. . .

If you have no expectations of someone, you’ll not be disappointed by their actions or inactions. Similarly, defining a relationship as a friendly one, puts some expectations on that friendship. The level of expectation often corresponds to the level of friendship and intimacy. As such, it behooves us to act right and hold each other accountable in the relationship.

I came up with five things that real friends are and are not in a simplified, but dignified, manner.

5 things real friends are not:

  1. Perfect. Just as no-one is perfect, do not expect your friend/s to be. Be gentle but respectful of one another. However, if one is known for hurting the other with their words or actions, then boundaries have to be set and the friendship categorized.
  2. Snitches. No friend snitches on his/her friend. Snitching, in my opinion, stems from jealousy and envy. And a jealous and envious friend is a catastrophe waiting to happen!
  3. Competitive with one another. You compete with yourself to be better; not with your friend. There’s no healthy competition in friendship.
  4. Envious or jealous. See #2 above.
  5. Judging. Friends accept you for who you are. Judging stems from the need to want to have people be like one. This is tantamount to control. Having everyone look, do, talk, or act like me can make the world boring.

Let’s embrace the diversity and uniqueness in each other.

Real friends

  1. Are true to one another. There’s transparency and no holes barred in the relationship.
  2. Tell you the truth that you need to hear or that others are scared to tell you.
  3. Watch your back. This is self-explanatory. Ask yourself, “if my friend was absent, will my response in absentia collaborate with his or hers?” If your answer is “No,” it means you both don’t know each other well enough to be friends. You’re still in the stranger-ally level.
  4. Always know your stand. Similar to #3 above.
  5. Allow you to be yourself in their presence without judging you!

What are your thoughts on this and the 5 things that real friends are and are not? Feel free to share and like the post.

Pyramid of Friendship

I created the above Pyramid of Friendship but had a hard time uploading the file so I did the next best thing I could think of to do; took a photograph of it. If anyone has a better solution for me on how to upload the file, I’d be glad to hear it. Thanks.

. . .

The issue of friends/friendships has been togging on my mind for a while. We call each other friends, but are we really? What does friendship really mean? Who qualifies to be called a/your friend? Is a friend someone who, or barely, knows you? Don’t get me wrong, it would be nice to be thought of as someone’s friend and to have someone to call a friend. But who really is a (or your) friend?

Yes, friendship has to start somewhere. And, if we do not stretch out a “friendship” hand, it will never begin.

Real (or True) Friends share some level of intimacy that they do not share with everyone. Intimacy, according to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, is the state of familiarity and act of “developing through long association; is of a very personal or private nature where you share intimate secrets, including marked by very close association.”

At the base of my inverted Pyramid of Friendship is

  1. Strangers: they are friends you haven’t met or really don’t know yet. That’s where all friendships begin. This level is broad, accommodates all, and shares zero intimacy. If you get to know each other by introduction; sharing the basic demographics such as name, where you live, and occupation or hobby, you move to the next level
  2. Ally/Acquaintance(Casual): here you have a little bit of information about each other and continue to share more demographics such as whether you’re single or married. The level of intimacy is beginning to develop but both sides are still proceeding with caution. This is where/what I call “checking each other out!”
  3. Social / Social media: Social friends enjoy a common interest that ranges from following one another on the social media, love for something like parties, hiking, food/cooking, having fun together, etc., but are devoid of sharing serious life issues. They don’t want to be involved in the nitty-gritty of one’s life or bogged down with it. They tend to be superficial and care only about the fun times. But life consists of both the good and bad and life happens to all. Social friends are those who would tag one as a “drama” queen/king. When you share a little bit of your real self, you never know which way it might go. In essence, social friends are inconsistent. They befriend you today, but are gone tomorrow. They also are quick to join the bandwagon. Level of intimacy with social/social media friends is 1. They know as much as you share with them on your social media pages or during the fun/partying times.
  4. Associates/Colleagues: We spend a third (or more) of our day at work with these group of friends. These are people we have no choice but to deal with. They know the parts of us that we allow them to see or know. We could tag this part of us our professional side. But they are unaware of our real self. Those we care about move to the next level
  5. Friends (Close friends): these group often have known us for a little longer, or we attended school or college together and still maintain the association or are colleagues we choose to continue with after work hours. At this level, we’ve established some level of trust and probably have come to know another member or more of our families. Level of intimacy is growing and is at 2.
  6. Buddy/Best (or Girl) Friends: friendship has grown in terms of time and depth knowledge of one another. This group has first-hand knowledge of who you really are. They see the side you often don’t show the rest of the world. You also know each other’s families; have common interests, and can call or knock on their doors late at night or early morning without feeling guilty. Intimacy level is 3.
  7. Confidant/Confidante (Intimate friends): The optimal level of friendship is the Confidant/Confidante. It is narrow because only one (and rarely, two) people can hold the position at any time.

Level of Intimacy

The level of intimacy is a five-level measurement (from 0 to 4) of trust, openness, vulnerability, accountability, and availability that one shares in a friendship or relationship. At the Confidant/Confidante level, it is at its peak; 4. Not everyone can attain this level because not everyone can hold up to each measurement of trust, openness, vulnerability or accountability and availability required at this level. At the Buddy/Girlfriend, Intimacy level is 3. You can call or knock on each other’s doors probably till 11 p.m. or from 6:00 a.m. the following day.

At the Confidant/Confidante level, however, your doors and phones are always open to one another.

. . .

We all need someone in each level of the Pyramid in our lives but a Confidant/Confidante is invaluable.

Categorize your friendship

Finally, categorizing your friends/friendships will help avoid heartaches. For example, knowing that my colleague is only that (about workplace) will remove the burden from both of us of expecting more from him/her empathizing about my granny or dog dying. Great if they do; that might score with me and move him/her to my next level of friendship. But if they don’t, I won’t lose sleep nor deem him/her as a bad folk.

Please share your thoughts of this post. Thanks for reading.

Pyramid-of-Friendship was first published on Think-Talk.org

We are a complicated species

Credits: https://unsplash.com/@ryoji__iwata

Human beings are so complicated. I wonder why. Lately, I’ve been pondering on why it’s so hard for us to get along with each other. Some might claim that my statement is invalid that human beings do get along. To this I say that few people getting along, when ALL or majority could, does not invalidate my claim nor equate everyone getting along. Please read along with me.

In terms of religion alone, we all claim to be of, and worship, one and the same God, yet we have a multitude of branches of religion. The multitude of branches and denominations stemmed mainly from disagreements over doctrines and/or subjective interpretations of parts of the Bible or the religion’s sacred book.

Why so many?

According to records, there are five major religions; namely, Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, and Buddhism, but a staggering 4,300 religions worldwide

Image: Carrie Osgood / weforum.org / World Map of Religions

Intra-Branches

Christianity is divided between Eastern and Western theology. In these two divisions there are six branches: Catholicism, Protestantism, Eastern Orthodoxy, Anglicanism, Oriental Orthodoxy, and Assyrians. Restorationism is sometimes considered the seventh branch.”

Each major religion also has its own branches. For example, there’s the Roman Catholics but “the German monk Martin Luther … denouncing the Catholic sale of indulgences — pardons for sins — and questioning papal authority led to his excommunication and the start of the Protestant Reformation.”

We can go down the list of each major religion and its branches.

. . .

Islam is also represented by several major branches: Sunni, Shi’a, Ibadi, Ahmadiyya, and Sufism.

Modern Hinduism is divided into four major devotional sects: Vaishnavism, Shaivism, Shaktism, and Smartism.

Judaism also has four branches; the Reform, Orthodox, Conservatism, and Reconstructionist.

Each religious branch also has its branches; branches within branches!

I hope you get the point?

Yet some might say that “variety is the spice of life” and that it is better to have choices rather than be restrictive. True, but doesn’t it make life somewhat harder and the people more complicated to deal with? A branch of religion prefer to stick together with its members and view others suspiciously because of differences in doctrines.

Well, well, well … I could go on and on. As it is with religion, so it is with other areas of life.

I’m not complaining, just pondering.

What would the world view be like if we all practiced one religion? Do you think it will be boring or fun? Just a thought.

Thanks for reading.

What makes a man marry several women?

Libido? Cupidity? Power (Clout) and Control, Social Status, Shortage of men, or simply because they can and the women allow it?

Your answer is as good as mine.

. . .

Polygamy is the act of marrying multiple spouses, simultaneously or sequentially, without first divorcing the other spouse.

Sociologists have different terms when the man marries multiple wives. The act is called polygyny; and polyandry when the woman marries multiple men.

The term globally used though is polygamy and it is widespread among men; rather than women. This blog prefers the term polygamy to polygyny.

Where is Polygamy Practiced?

While polygamy is illegal in most countries, it is still an act practiced in parts of Africa and Asia.

Polygamy was practiced up till 1993 in France! Click here for a list of countries’ current statuses on polygamy.

Justifications

Religion:

Religious reasons permit men to marry several wives. For example, the Islamic religious tenets permit men to marry a maximum of four wives, with a caveat that they can afford to take care of the women and treat them equally. However, I know tons of moslem men who can’t afford to marry one wife let alone four, but nonetheless indulge in polygamy.

Likewise, I have known devout moslem men, though rare, who married only one wife till death.

What is disturbing though is that Christian men also marry several wives! Granted that the Quran/Koran (Islamic sacred texts) permits the moslem men to engage in polygamous acts, there is nowhere in the Bible where it is written that a man can marry several wives. Some might want to exemplify Solomon or David or Abraham and his sons. Before you do, first, it was not a religious permission; the men chose to do it of themselves, and secondly, that was Old Testament (pre-Christ); and thirdly, please note that God did not sanction their actions.

The Mormon is another religion that allows polygamy.

To avoid mistresses

Some men justify the act of polygamy by claiming that it is better to marry the women rather than hiding to have mistresses outside the home. The sad truth is that the men still have mistresses anyways.

. . .

Another factor is that some women simply like to be “kept” women and be splurged with money and things. The men often pay the women’s rents or mortgages and everything else the women want and need.

Historical reasons

History tells us that men married several women in order to have help on the farm and in their businesses. Such that the children also were put to work prematurely.

Cultural pressures

Certain cultures pressure the man to take on other women for various reasons which include:

  1. if the woman suffers from infertility and is unable to bear children, or
  2. if the woman bears sole sexes (that is, all boys or all girls), or
  3. simply and wickedly to force the woman to succumb to the man’s family pressures to let her know that her in-laws still control the man and/or relegate the woman to an inferior position in her home!

Should the men alone be blamed?

Maybe the onus should be on the women? Why would any woman agree to be number 2, or 5, or infinite? Why would any woman, knowingly, still agree to marry a married man? What makes the woman think that she will be different? It is often a matter of time. Seems once the woman bears the children, the man is out fishing again for a younger or more beautiful woman, and the cycle continues.

. . .

While some younger women marry into polygamy because of wealth or fame, others do so because they believe that their marriageable years have eluded them.

I believe that there is a man for each woman. The gender ratio; that is, the ratio of male to female, according to world records is still insignificant. In 2019, female world data was 49.58%,, compared to 49.97% in 1960!

The above world data link is interactive. To compare the numbers for any given years, simply change the base year (in the picture below, it is 1960) and the comparable year (here it is 2019).

Polygamy is not a positive or progressive lifestyle. There’s a hypocritical living style where everyone claims to be happy, loving, and cordial with one another. The truth however is that none is as happy as they claim and everyone is fighting for the love and attention of the Patriarch who is often the glue holding the family together.

Even with maternal siblings (those who share the same mother), true love often seem to be lost or uncertain. Children are tagged as belonging to (or favored by) one parent rather than both parents. With this stance, the siblings are pitted against one another or against the other parent.

Is there any Derived Benefit(s)?

Frankly, the only beneficiary of polygamy is the man. He gets to have any woman any time he wants. He also tends to put the women on their toes competing for his attention, love, and/or money.

. . .

Seriously, though, there might be some benefits derived from polygamy. I do not however advocate this form of marriage.

A few derived benefits, if true love were possible and exists within the home and its members, are that each member of the family has unique strengths, gifts, and skill sets that can be (or should be) shared and would be beneficial to all. Rather than looking outside, family members can depend on one another for those resources they would otherwise pay for. Bottomline, there’s ample help to go round.

Downside of Polygamy

I sincerely believe that men who indulge in polygamy are inconsiderate and can be described as both selfish or self-centered as they only live to satisfy their libido regardless of the feelings of their wives or children. They are unable to love the women equally or unconditionally. It is a loveless full house! They also are ignorant of the possibilities of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs). The children become their mothers’ responsibilities as they do not have the full attention of their dad. Unfortunately, the mothers find themselves becoming “forced” single parents as they, not both parents, are responsible for the upkeep of their children.

There’s chaos where the man, wives, and children all live under the same roof. I often wonder about the sleeping arrangements and who gets to sleep with the man daily. Would it be on a rotation-basis? Or would it solely be the youngest wife? Again, your guess is as good as mine.

There’s also immense and unhealthy competition among the wives and the children. Should one woman’s child or children succeed (or be more successful), the other wives and children become jealous and envious. This often leads to the Joseph-saga (in the Bible where Joseph who was loved by their dad became the envy of his siblings. They plotted to sell him as a slave and lied to their dad that an animal killed him – some of us will remember the story and its ending). Some households resort to occultism and fetishes against one another. This is barbaric.

In addition, the first wife, who often is the oldest woman, sadly has to live in silence watching her husband daily exhibits his machoism with the younger women. What mental torture!

Many homes have been split (if not destroyed) on the demise of the patriarch of the family.

Final word

Whatever the reason(s) men choose to marry several women, or women choose to marry an already-married man, just as technology presently is to the world and is still evolving, the idea (or act) of polygamy is archaic should be eradicated in this modern world and its future.

Women should resist the urge to be second or nth fiddle, as well as the pressure to marry an “already-married” man. Don’t give up ladies, your man will surely come. No marriage is without continuous work. There is a saying that goes, “one wife, one trouble!” Marrying multiple wives therefore equates multiple trouble irrespective of the family front that appears in public.

Men ought to know how to love and love well. There are abundant resources to help those who need the help. Love is a continuous work.

Women are better off marrying monogamously than polygamously; just pray that the right man seeks you out.

Men, on the other hand, should do their part to curb their libido and control their appetite for more. Resist the urge to jump in-and-out of love and beds!

My two cents. Thanks for reading.

Feel free to comment below and share.

R A P E

Rape is never a pleasant thing to talk about. It sends shivers down my spines. But, it’s an issue we find ourselves talking about today. It’s an issue dear to The Eternal Word’s heart. It is an issue everyone should be concerned about.

It’s also an issue that has no cultural, race, age, or socio-economic boundaries. To learn more, read the following:

Sex vs. RAPE

Having sex is meant to be a special thing between two loving adults. It is meant to be an enjoyable experience with the right person.

Sex is never supposed to be had with a minor! It is illegal and whosoever does so is a pedophile. Such person is punishable under the law! Even the religions and cultures that allow such acts should be banned as they are perpetuating an illegal act!!!

RAPE is forceful sex, against the victim’s will. When sex is forceful, it is evil concupiscence (Colossians 3:5-6). If the person says “NO” and pushes, please STOP, they mean “NO!” Never think that the person is playing hard to get. Respect the person. No one enjoys forced sex; except that the perpetrator satisfies an evil desire/longing.

What adrenaline, or is it testosterone, flows uninhibited through the veins and arteries of one to defile another?! The mere thought of RAPE gives me chills as one with high fever.

Effects

RAPE victims suffer psychologically, emotionally, and mentally after a RAPE ordeal. Some of the consequences could be long-term if the victims are not treated or seek counseling/therapies. Additionally, most victims suffer shame and self-blame. Because of this, the majority of RAPE incidents are not reported or even shared with family members and/or friends leaving the victim to suffer the trauma alone.

PTSD is real with RAPE victims, so also is depression, panic attacks, and anxiety. Some victims also struggle with self esteem.

Life is hard enough as it is, why dump more on anyone? Rapists must be STOPPED and brought to justice. Anyone who has ever raped another must repent.

. . .

RAPE must be categorized as a pandemic issue. We all nust do our part to STOP it locally and globally. Please do your part people.

RAPE Myths

Understand the myths about rape or sexual violence as compiled by Rape Crisis, U.K.. For the corresponding Facts on each Myth, please visit their website https://rapecrisis.org.uk/get-informed/about-sexual-violence/myths-vs-realities/

  1. If someone gets really drunk, it’s their own fault if they end up getting raped. They should have kept themselves safe.
  2. Women often lie about rape because they regret having sex with someone, or because they want attention.
  3. If someone didn’t scream or try to fight their attacker off, then it wasn’t rape.
  4. If you are in a relationship with someone, it’s always OK to have sex with them.
  5. People who were sexually abused as children are likely to become abusers themselves.
  6. Women shouldn’t go out alone at night as they are likely to get raped.
  7. Women provoke men to rape them by wearing revealing clothes or flirting.
  8. Once a man is sexually aroused he can't help himself; he has to have sex.
  9. When it comes to sex, women and girls give out mixed signals. They sometimes 'play hard to get' and say 'no' when they really mean 'yes'. 
  10. Men of certain races and backgrounds are more likely to commit sexual violence.
  11. Men don't get raped.
  12. Women don’t commit sexual offences.

. . .

Need more information or gelp for your locality on how/what you can do to help end RAPE, Click here.

Let’s end this pandemic.

Thanks for reading. Please share.

If men only knew … 5 Things men ought to know

If only men knew the gift of God that He gave them, men would handle their wives with utmost care and treat them as precious jewels.

Out of the bones of Adam (Genesis 2:21-23), Eve, the mother of all living (Genesis 20:3), was formed. And His Word said, “…, ye husbands, dwell with them (your wives) according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered.” (1 Peter 3:7)

That your prayers be not hindered!

Dictionary.com https://www.dictionary.com/browse/hinder provides the definition of: ‘hinder’ as: ‘to cause delay, interruption, or difficulty in; hamper; impede:

In case you still do not understand, God says that if you call on Him, when you’re being (or have been) mean to, or have manhandled, or abused (in any way, shape, or form; i.e., emotional, physically, mentally, financially, spiritually, etc; your wife, He might not answer you quickly!

Why men, or anyone for that natter, would want to go through hindered prayers beats me.

. . .

Do men not know?

It bothers me to know, or hear, that men hit their wives, cheat on them, lie, or engage in idle chatter about them, and worse yet, relegate their wives while loving and placing everyone else above her.

  • Don’t they know that charity begins from home?
  • Don’t they know that both man and wife have become one in the eyes of God, despite that your family members or the public are trying to separate both of you?
  • Don’t they know that whatever ill men do or send their wives’ way, comes back to them; sometimes even much more?
  • Don’t they also know that even if the wife doesn’t say anything and tolerate the “abuse” for the sake of the children and keeping the family together, that God, Jehovah El Roi, sees it all and will avenge on her behalf?
  • Don’t men know that criticizing their wives publicly shows much more the kind of men they are?!!!

It’s a spiritual principle

Even men’s parents ought to take second place after their wives. This is a hard pill for many immature men to swallow. “What? The one who gave birth to me now takes second place?! No way!” Before you stone the messenger; God also said this : “For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife” (Mark 10:7, Matthew 19:5, Mark 10:7. Ephesians 5:31).

How I have heard rumblings and offenses at this specific God’s Word! Have men ever wondered, or even asked the Author, why He put this verse in His Book? Only the wise man would stop to think and ask.

. . .

I once was a Mary Kay Cosmetics consultant. Mary Kay Ash was the founder of beauty products established primarily to help women make some income while still maintaining their homes/families. Her business was based on a principle that God is first, family second, and everything/everyone else third (or last). She touted this principle to her beauty consultants stating that if they followed it, they were sure to excel. At the time, I didn’t have a relationship with Father God; only knew Him as someone up there. That has since changed and I haven’t deviated from the valuable principle since knowing Him.

. . .

I said that to implore men to follow this same principle because they are the head (of the house/family) from which the oil flows.

Men, your wives are your help mate to be cherished. Treat your wife like your queen. You are the head and king of your domain and your wife is your partner (or as I normally say, the neck). If the head tries to make a wrong turn, the neck steers it back or becomes stiff forcing the head back to its normal position!

Men, please love your wives “…, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;” (Ephesians 5:25). As you do, you will enjoy the favor of God and man, you’ll be blessed going out and coming in, and your children will honor you because, to your son, you reflect the man they aspire to be, and of how they would treat their own wives; and for your daughters, you will be the yardstick they use to measure men or their own husbands.

5 things Men ought to know

Men ought to:

1. Love their wives unconditionally. Charity begins from home. God says “two have become one.” Loving her is loving yourself. I haven’t met anyone who hates himself. In fact, God says, “love her as Jesus loves the church and gave his life for it!”

2. Treat their wives like queens. Because ”two have become one,” men, you are the heads and kings of your domains and your wives are your partners (or as I normally say, the necks). If the head tries to make a wrong turn, the neck steers it back or becomes stiff forcing the head back to its normal position!

3. Listen to their wives. Women have been naturally wired with instincts and intuition. They just know things. Men (and the family) would benefit greatly if they first consult with, and listen to, their wives. As an example, God told Abraham to listen to Sarah when she asked that Hagar be sent away (Genesis 21:12).

4. Cover their wives. Wise men know how to do this. But for those who don’t, it simply means that you do not embarrass your wife intentionally or otherwise, especially publicly. Even when she is the cause of the embarrassment, it’s wisdom to cover her than causing her shame or more embarrassment.

5. Cherish her and help with the chores.

  1. Let her know that she’s the most important person in your life; not your mom. Your wife is the one who shares bed with you and cooks your meals; not your mom. Your wife is also the first point of call should there be, God forbid, an accident; not your mom! If your mom is more important, maybe you’re not ready for marriage. Ouch, that’s cold. But, sorry men, you need to hear it since your wife couldn’t tell you. I’m not disrespecting mothers, I’m one too. There’s a reason you married your wife and not your mom; never forget that reason;
  2. Know your wife’s primary love language and demonstrate such to her. Men, you (or both of you) will be frustrated if you keep buying her stuff when all she wants is to spend quality time with you or vice versa. Giving and receiving the right kind of love improves the aura of the home/family.
  3. Skip outings just to spend time together or just for her to rest and recharge her energy.
  4. If you have kids, take the kids out so she can rest.

Men, now that you know, please do the right thing to, and with, your wife if you haven’t already been doing so.

Thanks for reading.

Stay blessed!

Help, Lord!

Bible in One Year 2020 with Nicky Gumbel – Day 203 – Devotional

Sharing the Devotional from the Bible in One Year 2020. To read more and read daily, click this url https://www.bible.com/reading-plans/17704/day/203?segment=0

One of my most frequent prayers is ‘Help!’ It is also one of the most common prayers in the Bible. It is a prayer you can pray every day, in any and every situation. You can cry out to the Lord for help. God’s desire is for you to have a relationship with Him that is real and from the heart.

Psalm 88:9b-18

Help in broken relationships

Rejection is always hurtful – especially when it comes from someone you love or someone very close to you. Broken relationships are painful – particularly when we feel we have been ‘dumped’ by a ‘lover’, a ‘neighbour’ or a close friend. The psalmist feels that since ‘lover and neighbour alike dump me; the only friend I have left is Darkness’ (v.18, MSG).

He says, ‘For as long as I remember I’ve been hurting’ (v.15, MSG). The situation seems like one of utter hopelessness: darkness (v.12), feeling rejected by God (v.14), affliction (v.15a), terror and despair (v.15b). ‘I’m bleeding, black-and-blue… I’m nearly dead’ (v.17, MSG).

Yet there is one note of hope. The hope comes from the fact that, in the midst of all this, he chooses to start each day by crying out to God: ‘I call to you, O Lord, every day; I spread out my hands to you’ (v.9b).

Perhaps today you’re struggling with a relationship: in your marriage, workplace, church or with a close friend. However bad your situation may seem, there is always hope if you cry out to the Lord for help.

‘I cry to you for help, O Lord; in the morning my prayer comes before you’ (v.13). O Lord, I spread out my hands to you. I ask you for help…

Psalm 88:13

. . .

May God help us all in our time(s) of need when we sincerely cry out to Him. He will never let us down.

Why does God allow good people to die sooner and allow the wicked to live?

Father God forgive me as I write this because you expect me to know better. But, sometimes I don’t. This instance is one of those times that it’s still hard to swallow.

Sorry that I sound like a child when I should be talking like your mature daughter. But there are times the kid in us rears its head and one who is known for wisdom talks or acts foolishly.

Forgive me Father God.

It’s been five years since you allowed my brother, MO, to depart this world.

It still hurts like it happened yesterday for he was taken in his prime.

My brother, you’ll forever be missed. I “slept all these years” hoping that it would be a dream for the grief was too deep.

But alas I had to wake up and accept that you’re really no longer present with us.

To be absent in the body, is to be present with the Lord

2 Corinthians 5:8

I take solace in the fact that God knows best and that you’re at peace; no more striving.

I miss you dearly, my brother. You were one of a kind; the family reconciler; Dad’s right-hand man; kind-hearted; always going the extra mile for anyone in need; you were a friend indeed and a loving father.

Let the wicked repent

I remember your statement when Grandma died. You said, “the wicked has done their worst, Mama lived 101 years on earth.”

I pondered on it and finally understood what you meant.

Well, may the wicked never die again. Sarcastic. Should they not repent and turn from their wicked ways, may they be like chaff before the wind and may the angels of the Lord drive them out. (Isaiah 17:13)

We all miss you.

Continue to rest in peace.

Love-first model for marriage and relationships

We posed the question, in our previous blog, should-love-or-marriage-be-based-on-a-business-or-love-first-model.

We talked about the business-first model and what relationships would be like if we adopted that model. If you missed it, click bit.ly/2Czm55T to read it.

Today, we review the other type of relationship; love-first model. It should be a no-brainer that relationships are based on love, right? No! It’d amaze even Venus that it’s not so!

What is love?

Dictionary.com https://www.dictionary.com/browse/love offers a few definitions of: ‘love’ as:

  • a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person;
  • sexual passion or desire.
  • a person toward whom love is felt; beloved person; sweetheart.

What is the love-first model?

It is the kind that marriages and relationships ought to be about. It is also the kind where each edifies the other above one self. The Bible provides us with a standard:

“Love suffers long, and is kind;

love envies not;

love vaunts not itself, is not puffed up,

Love does not behave itself unseemly, seeks not his/her own, is not easily provoked, thinks no evil;

Love rejoices not in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth;

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Love never fails: ….”

‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭13:4-8‬ ‭KJV

This is the utmost kind of relationship everyone desires and/or should aspire to. But how do we get it?

How can we enter into this ideal model?

I believe that this kind of relationship is possible when men wisely choose their ladies and the ladies patiently wait for their other half to search them out. Then, there is dignity, mutual respect, and appreciation in love.

If marriages and relationships are based on the love-first model, there will be no occurrences of separation, divorce, or leaving one another. The relationship one enters into, will culminate into marriages till death does one or both apart. That, to me, is the ideal kind!

But since we do have incidents of separation and divorces, is’t then safe to say that either one of the parties chose the wrong partner to begin with or that one or both entered into the relationship under pretense or that the marriage or relationship was entered into for the wrong reasons? Maybe? Only both parties can tell.

Your choice

Now that you know what love really is, which would you choose as your model for marriage or relationship; the business-first or the love-first?

For the love-first model, pray and have a confirmation in your spirit that you are choosing wisely because the alternative (aka wrong choice) can be disastrous.

Love and Peace!

Should love or marriage be based on a business- or love-first model?

“What’s in it for me?” “You rub my back and I rub yours (or scratch or poke yours depending on how I’m feeling about you! Lol). Sounds so cold, unh? Yet, these selfish and shamefacedly statements have now become cliches in households.

Why does anything have to be in it for you? What about the other person? Why have we starved love and become so hungry for the $dollar (or money, for those who don’t spend the almighty currency!)? What happened to us all?

I could rant endlessly in the hope that some “expert” somewhere could answer my questions.

With the above outlooks on love/marriage, falling in love or getting married becomes scary. Should it? Let’s talk about it and consider both models.

Business-first model

Dictionary.com defines ‘Business’ as:
https://www.dictionary.com/browse/business

  1. an occupation, profession, or trade:
  2. the purchase and sale of goods in an attempt to make a profit.
  3. a person, partnership, or corporation engaged in commerce, manufacturing, or a service; profit-seeking enterprise or concern.

Marriage is honorable …” Hebrews 13:4a

Types of businesses

There are different types of businesses; the top four are:

  1. Sole proprietorship
  2. Partnership
  3. Corporations
  4. Limited Liability Companies.

The business-first model in marriage is similar to a Partnership. In all businesses, it is wise to have an agreement/contract that clarifies expectations. The contract in marriage is called the Prenuptial Agreement or Prenups, for short.

My humble opinion is that prenups are business-in-marriage documents that should have no place when the marriage is grounded in love.

However, I can envisage why one person (or both) favors prenups before entering into the marriage.

For your information, prenups are not relegated to famous and wealthy folks. Average, everyday, working-class people have been known to request prenups before marrying. I wonder why anyone would marry prenuptially! Personally, I won’t.

Comment below if you would marry someone who presents you with a prenup. If not, why not? Thanks.

If a business model is applied to marriage, it implies that three scenarios are imminent:

  1. either one person profits, and the other losses;
  2. both parties win; or
  3. both parties lose!

Let’s expatiate on each scenario in reverse order

The third scenario (both parties lose; lose-lose) means that the outcome was a fallout, separation, or divorce. Is it safe to say then that both parties were misfits to start with? What caused a fallout or the ultimate decision of a divorce? What differences were so grave that could not have been forgiven, or as Californian courts will rule, were irreconcilable? Are we so callous with one another such that we take the “it’s my way or the highway!” stance? Maybe, we all should choose our significant others wisely before heading on the crooked road.

The second scenario (both parties win; win-win) is the ideal. But remember that the goal of starting a business is to make a profit; aka ROI, return on investment. In a marriage, what would those investments be? Using children as an example, as I couldn’t think of a better one,. Neither party didn’t begin the marriage with children. Each party brought something; the man contributed his sperm and the woman her eggs. “The profit” is the children?! What would we say about those in a second or third marriage who brought children into the new marriage. Blended home profit? What other examples can be used? Furniture, cars, etc. with the outcome (profit) being a home?! Maybe. What if one party does not have the furniture or cars? Should they still start a “business” together or the items become “ours” rather than mine or yours? Or as in a real business partnership, the type of partnership will be defined; that is, who would be the active, dormant/sleeping, limited powers, etc. partner? I’ll like to hear your thoughts on this.

With this scenario, it appears that both parties made the right choice of “business” partner, right? We all might need to take cue(s) from this type of business-first love/marriage.
How then would the profits be divided? 50/50 or ratio relative to your contribution?

The first scenario (win-loss) is a troublesome one. Were both parties, the onset, aware of what the outcome would be? Why would anyone knowingly enter into a losing business? Were there any part of the contract that was latent, ambiguous, or intentionally omitted? If so, should there still be a contract – shouldn’t the contract be voidable, void, and/or rescinded? Let’s ponder on these for a moment. Some relationships are doomed even before they begin because everyone saw and knew that it was never meant to be nor was it going to last. Only the people involved couldn’t see nor know it! I could name a few examples but I don’t want to be litigated! You probably know one or two as well.

. . .

Each of the above scenarios is worth pondering on. If you or I were to enter into a marriage or relationship, which scenario would you or I choose as our ideal? I know for sure that I would 💯 choose the second win-win scenario and I hope that you would, too.

What could humanity do to avoid a losing love/marriage? What sustainable relationship tips can we pass on that can help others and especially the younger generation?

Please comment below.

We’ll continue with the other model, Love-first in our next blog. Till then,

Love & Peace

Thanks for reading.

110 days from today …

What are you going to do?

Whatever you do, do it totally with your heart knowing that you have read, watched, and studied, all that needs to be digested. That, above all, you have studied “to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness.”
‭‭(2 Timothy‬ ‭2:15-16‬)

Whatever you do 110 days from today, please seriously refrain from groupthink or bandwagon effect of joining the acts or desires of the populace.

Finally, whatever you do, stop, pray, and ponder to ask yourself, will I be able to live with myself after this or will I regret having acted contrary to the truth and my heart.

I say pray because often not all that appears good are of God. I repeat, everything that looks, feel, and or sound good are not of God. Few are obvious to the naked eye, but many are discreet that will fool even the very elect (Matthew 24:24b). Be not one of those who think that God can be mocked for whatsoever we sow, we shall reap (Galatians 6:7-8).

. . .

The frailty of humanity is that we focus on the negatives of the past and of one another and sadly forget the good of both the past and one another. Psychologists confirm that this is how our brains are hardwired and term it negativity bias. Click the links below to read more on the term:

. . .

In 110 days from today, I implore you to focus on merits rather than the negatives and VOTE with your heart for the Truth.

You have ample time to research and digest each candidate and, of course, each proposition.. Start today so that 110 days from today, you will know what to do and will do that which you ought to have done.

. . .

America is presently in a dire state. But there’s hope still for by His mercies, America shall not be consumed because great is His faithfulness! (Lanentations 3:22-24)

Let your voice be heard; exercise your civic right and let your vote count. No excuses. You can Vote by mail. Check out information on how to now and be ready to vote 110 days from today.

Peace!

Your Leader-ship Matters

You are a leader to someone at some place.

An organization and its staff often reflect its leader. That organization could be your home/family, school, religious place, or extra-curricular activity. You will observe that whatever values the one at the helm holds dear to him/her will be the values that trickle down through its leadership, to the staff or team members. In a business setting, the values will ultimately flow from top to the bottom of the organizational echelon until an expert is invited to train or advise the leaders of (an often necessary) change. In essence, there’s a positive correlation between the leader, leadership, and organizational culture. 

To clarify so that we’re all on the same page, the leader of an organization is its CEO or President of that organization. S/he is the one at the helm of the organization. The leadership of the organization, on the other hand, consists of all the leaders; that is, the CEO, COO, CIO, CTO, CAO, etc. We also know them as “Management.”

The leader’s style is his/her Charisma or lack thereof, The way he or she talks and connects emotionally with his/her staff; superiors, peers, and subordinates.

The leadership style is the Culture that is visible in the organization’s mission, goals, and vision. Read what Matt Fagaly has to say on this [https://ideas.bkconnection.com/the-5-types-of-leadership-styles-that-can-define-your-organizations-culture].

It is always a great feeling to enjoy one’s work/job. Why not? Because one spends a third (or longer) of one’s day at work. 

Also, when one aligns with its organization’s culture or values, one is happier and more productive. The reverse is the case when there’s a misalignment. The sooner one realizes that one is a misfit, the earlier the better for that person to start looking for new office home. Likewise, business owners employing folks who do not align with the leader (or organization’s) values and are only about the salary, will often spell DOOM.

Most of us stay too long on a job and are miserable with the resultant effect on productivity and health/wellness. Sadly, some of us don’t know (nor have learned) how not to carry these negative effects home to our loved ones.

So, knowing what values are important to you should guide you in the company you work for or the people you hire. Don’t let the high salary or charisma entice you and end up being miserable. Yay Yay Yay we live in a world that no longer holds dear (social, moral, ethical) values any longer. But for those of us who still do; I’m not judging anyone (this is a statement and an excuse that is now prevalently being used that indirectly means to “mind one’s own business”), values are important and we should align work and company to them accordingly.

If you’re looking for a job, want to change your current job, or need to hire someone, write down your top three or five qualities/values and set out for the company or person that shares those qualities/values. No compromise and no settling out of desperation till you find that company or person.

. . .

Interested in knowing your leadership style, here are a few links to help:

https://williamctaylor.com/quiz/; https://eml.usc.edu/leadership-style-quiz; https://online.hbs.edu/blog/post/styles-of-leadership

Love and Love Languages

How do you love yourself or allow yourself to be loved? Are you the flower person, chocolates, wine and dine, just-hold-my-hands kind of person? Or do you prefer the long (phone/face-to-face) conversations? Whatever your preference, wouldn’t you like your significant other to know, or you knowing your children’s; if you have any?

Wouldn’t you also like to know the type of love your relationship (or marriage) is exhibiting?

Well, if you already don’t know, we all speak various love languages. These languages often can be misconstrued. Knowing the different types of love and love languages can set relationships straight.

. . .

Biblically, there are four types of love. Jack Zavada writes about Eros, Storge, Philia, and Agape in his article. Click here to read more https://www.thoughtco.com/types-of-love-in-the-bible-700177.

Agape is the highest form of love. It’s the God-kind of Love which we all should aspire to.

. . .

Psychologically, there are seven types of Love. Neel Burton M.D. adds three more to the biblical types. I learned something as these three are all new to me. To read them, please click here: https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/hide-and-seek/201606/these-are-the-7-types-love.

Did you learn something new as well? Yes or No, please comment below.

There’s however an eighth kind that I’ll like to add.

Mania (obsessive/excessive) love. This kind of love can manifest in the other seven, maybe six (excluding Agape) if not checked.

Love Languages

Love has a language. They are Words of Affirmation, Acts of Service, Receiving Gifts, Quality Time, and Physical Touch.

Speaking the wrong language is akin to someone speaking Swahili to a Greek. Result is chaos, (love) clutter, and reciprocity failure. It is important to know one’s love language as well as one’s spouse, children, and/or close friends.

According to Dr. Gary Chapman, “it helps strengthen relationships … as different people with different personalities express love in different ways.

Interested in finding out your love language, click here [https://www.5lovelanguages.com/profile/]. Each of us have a primary (dominant) language. We can also have a secondary (recessive) language as well as multiple love languages.

Have fun discovering your love language. And should you feel like sharing, do so in the Reply/Comments below.

Wisdom nugget: Today


In choosing whatever you want and however you live your life today,
remember tomorrow.

Whatever you do today,
Will you be proud of it tomorrow.

Whatever you do today,
Think of how you’ll explain it to your child/children or the one you love the most tomorrow,

Whatever you do that brings you comfort and money today,
Think of the comfort and more money it might take away tomorrow.

If it will give you sleepless nights tomorrow,
Be wise and wave it bye bye today

But we never know what tomorrow brings
So be wise today
And ask your Creator
If this is what He wants for you
Today!

😍🙏🏾✌🏾

An apropos for the remainder of the year

Today is Day 190 of the calendar and we’ve just begun the second half of 2020.

With COVID-19 and its effect on everyone and the economy, the ongoing unrest, including the upcoming elections, we, as well as our nation, are nearing a seemingly turning point.

I believe in miracles and we need the hand of God to steer us all and orchestrate a divine intervention.

This prayer is therefore apropos for us all for the rest of the year.

I pray that it resonates with you. Stay blessed.

BBC – Science & Nature – Human Body and Mind – Spot The Fake Smile

Spot The Fake Smile Survey
— Read on www.bbc.co.uk/science/humanbody/mind/surveys/smiles/

. . .

Can you spot a fake smile from a genuine one? According to U.K.’s BBC, “Most people are surprisingly bad at spotting fake smiles. One possible explanation for this is that it may be easier for people to get along if they don’t always know what others are really feeling.

Would you rather just get along with people or would you rather seek genuine friendships/relationships? For some, the answer might be “it depends.” I’d rather have the genuine.

. . .

I took this survey in one of my classes in college and scored 18 out of 20. Not bad, right?! But I wish I got it all! That two fake smiles could unknowingly cause a disaster or two if allowed to slip. Please don’t mind me – just revealing my competitive side 😀

I just found my result of the survey and wanted to share for a mid-week challenge.

. . .

We’re all in a haste to get things done that these days, no one stops to breathe or rest any more. (One reason that COVID-19 was a welcome breather of sorts!) We run about like the fable Chicken Little such that we miss the little things that matter. A fake smile and/or body language are two of such things.

. . .

Now, let’s see how you fair. Can you really spot a fake smile? Take the survey by clicking on the url above. p.s. you might need a Flash player.

Don’t forget to share your results in the comments below.

Happy hump day!