Tag Archives: God

38 to Date

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In honor of my 38th birthday, I want to share 38 things I am thankful for:

1. Jesus’ sacrifice: Glory, glory! 

2. My two precious boys: 17 and 5-my first, my last, my everything!

3. Loving students: They alone make my job worth the stress. 

4. Kindness: I have received a lot of kindness over the last few months that it has encouraged me to pay it all forward. 

5. The gift of another year: Hallelujah! 

6. Good friends: Shanna, Karen, Champale, Manita, and Hasina

7. Good food ūüėč: I love to eat and cook. I have a whole list of new restaurants that I plan to explore over the year. 

8. All of the birthday wishes and gifts I received today. Some were so unexpected but well received. 

9. A good cup of coffee: I had the most delicious coffee to date in the Dominican Republic and I’ve been on a quest since then to find another. 

10. Heat: What more can I say? Baby, it’s cold outside! 

11. Books: I love to read and I must say that books make me feel alive. 

12. Dear family: I do t have a lot nor am I close to them all, but despite it all, I am thankful to share blood ties with such a motley crew of people. 

13. A career: I am a rose who grew from concrete. I was determined to succeed and by His grace, I did. 

14. Health insurance: It saddens me that not everyone has this basic necessity. If you’ve ever been ill, you know just how vital it is. 

15. Technology: It allows me to stay connected to the ones I love whether near or far. 

16. Forgiveness: Thankful to God for extending it to me with condition. Also thankful for those who have forgiven my wrongs. 

17. Student loan deferments: LOL

18. Mercy: Thank you Lord. 

19.  Socks: I have a hard time walking in surfaces without them. It creeps me out, lol. 

20. Clean drinking water: In light of the water tragedy in Flint, it makes me thankfu for this “small” thing that we take for granted. 

21. Grocery stores: The convenience and array of goods is simply amazing. 

22. The sky: I have been fascinated with the sky for a while 

23. The color pink: It makes me feel so feminine

24. Safe transportation: My grandmother nor my mother knew how to drive. Thus is astounding to me considering the myriad of places I go on a weekly basis. Even though I hate pumping gas and taking the time to have the oil changed-I’m so thankful that when I need to go somewhere, I can simply get up and go. 

25. Coconut milk: This drink has been giving me all the B12 I need to have energy. 

26. Smiles: A simple does wonders for the soul. 

27. Hugs: Love them. 

28. Worship music: A good song puts me right in the Upper Room with the Lord. 

29. Winters that eventually turn into spring

30. Vision: I wear contacts so I know how it feels to have less than 20/20 vision. But I’m so thankful for the ability to see the beauty all around me. 

31. Making a difference: My job is often thankless drudgery. But just knowing that I may possibly make a difference gets me going. 

32. Ice skating: I’ve had such fun taking and teaching my boys how to skate. 

33. Flowers: I love blooms of all kind, especially tulips. They make me feel girly and loved.  

34. Chloe-My precious pooch is the girl child I’ve never had. She came in my life at a very barren, bleak time. Love that dog! 

35. Lessons: I’ve had some tough ones, no doubt. But without them, I would not have the deep sense of gratitude that I have for some things. 

36. Oceans: The ocean is such a magnificent sight to behold. I feel so in awe and in touch with God when I get the chance to partake in its beauty. 

37. Laughter: Tis is a beautiful thing. It is truly a healing balm. 

38. A good heart: Thankfully God judges our heart. I am not perfect, but my heart is good and strives to do the right thing. 

   
    
    
    
   

Conqueror

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Yet in all things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.

My best friend has conquered life! On 12.12.12, she returned to our Father in heaven. I have memories that span 22 years-from elementary to college, children and husbands, shopping and dining, drinking tea, attending cultural events, worshipping together, celebrating birthdays and other milestones, and our love of all things Twilight-Team Edward (I take pleasure in the fact that it was me who got her hooked, lol)-we have traversed the roads of life together.

On the drive home from the hospital, the theme from “The Golden Girls” kept playing in my mind:

“Thank you for being a friend/Travel down the road and back again/ Your heart is true/ You’re a pal and confidante.”

She was all¬†that and more. I’ve never had a finer friend. My heart brims over with love for her. I take comfort in knowing that absent from the body means present with the Lord. More than a conqueror, cancer didn’t beat her. She ran the race until the end. For weeping may last a night, but joy cometh in the morning!

I encouraged her to start a blog, and for a moment, she did. She didn’t write a lot, but what she did is so powerful and motivational. I am still amazed by all that she was.

I praise, bless, and thank God for our time together!

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4 Years and Counting…

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To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, And a time to die; A time to plant, And a time to pluck what is planted; A time to kill, And a time to heal; A time to break down, And a time to build up; A time to weep, And a time to laugh; A time to mourn, And a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, And a time to gather stones; A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing; A time to gain, And a time to lose; A time to keep, And a time to throw away; A time to tear, And a time to sew; A time to keep silence, And a time to speak; A time to love, And a time to hate; A time of war, And a time of peace.

This little blog all started on this day four years ago! My life has changed greatly since then! But that’s life and you just have to roll with the punches. If nothing else, I have learned that there is a time for everything.

The Missing Piece

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For we walk by faith, not by sight. 2 Corinthians 5:7

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, evidence of things not seen. Hebrews 11:1

Life is like a puzzle I like to tell myself. When you are putting it together, it often looks like it will never amount to anything, especially so when it  large or provides few clues on piecing it together.

Case in point: I had a photo turned into a puzzle, and because I was being cheap, I did not order the tin that would have displayed the picture on the outside. So when putting it together, I grew frustrated because I had nothing to reference and could not find the original picture snapped on a  Hawaiian beach.

The backdrop was simply sand, sky, and sea–which made it very hard to decipher one piece from another.¬† I quickly decided that the company¬† must have gotten the puzzle all wrong, it truly did not APPEAR that it could¬†form a legitimate image.¬†¬†I finally ¬†located the picture on my computer and worked from there. Slowly I made progress.

It wasn’t until I was virtually finished with it a few days later¬†that I knew a picture existed. I was so excited to have the puzzle done except for one piece that I could not find. Strangely, I did not panic. I was sure it would turn up somewhere. And it did in the strangest of places.¬† The missing piece was on the bathroom floor!

I recalled this experience today and decided to keep a puzzle piece in my purse as a reminder.  The piece serves to remind me that everything happens as it should, and once every piece is all in place, the picture will be complete. And make sense.

Moral of my story: Have faith!

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Oh, Had I a Golden Thread

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My sweet little niece Jada was born last week.¬† She is sooooo¬†pretty!¬† All I could do was stare at her delicate face¬†as she slept.¬† Jada was also born with Down’s Syndrome.

A week before her mom went into labor the doctor informed them that there was a possibility the baby could have it and that her labor would likely be induced to prevent a stillbirth.  There was also a chance of her being born with deformities. After I heard the news I immediately prayed and asked others to pray with me. 

When they told me she was fine I felt relief.¬† I had to see for myself so we went to visit her as soon as I got home from work. And she looked perfect to me.¬†She did not have the signs of a baby with this genetic disorder–no flaps of extra skin, the flattened nose, or the almond-shaped, droopy eyes.¬† I immediately¬†thanked God.¬† Jazmine¬†was sooooo excited and was talking a mile a minute¬†as she paraded around the hospital room telling me all the things she was going to do with “her” Jada.¬†

A couple of days later the results came back and it was positive. My heart deflated like a balloon.  What in the world would those two do with a baby with mental challenges? I  already help them out a lot financially.  More importantly, how would they handle it emotionally? 

So I thanked God that she was at least born with life.¬† But this diagnosis still feels so heavy.¬† When her mom told me I didn’t know how to form my mouth to offer some comfort.¬† What do you say in a situation¬†like this?¬† All I was able reply was that it was going¬†to be okay and that they had my support.¬†

I asked her how¬†they were coping.¬† She said “I’m okay with it, she’s still my baby girl.”¬† She said my brother had accepted it as well after a few tears.¬† At that moment I felt such utter gratitude and respect¬†for them both.¬† I doubt that I would have¬†welcomed¬†the results¬†with an ounce of¬†their graciousness.¬† Jada is lucky to have parents who love her unconditionally.

Since then I have contacted the local Down’s Syndrome chapter and requested information for them, did some research for myself, and I plan on buying them a book for parents of children with this condition.¬† There is no way I can “fix” this so I did the only thing I know how to do–help them become informed.

However, I am still struggling with this. Why them?  We get so comfortable assuming that all children will be born completely healthy and that is not always the case. Now I must find the strength to pray that God may equip them both with knowledge, patience, and diligence required to raise a child with special needs.

Oh, Had I a Golden Thread (Eva Cassidy version)

Oh, had I a golden thread
And a needle so fine
I’d weave a magic strand
Of rainbow design
Of rainbow design

In it I’d weave the bravery
Of women giving birth
In it I’d weave the innocence
Of the children over all the earth
Children of all the earth

Far over the water,
I’d stretch my magic band
To every city,
To every single land
To every land

Show my brothers and my sisters
My rainbow design
Bind up this sorry world
With hand and heart and mind
Hand and heart and mind

Oh, had I a golden thread
And a needle so fine
I’d weave a magic strand
Of rainbow design
Of rainbow design

God Sees The Truth, But Waits

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This weekend I was feeling a little down so Saturday I decided to visit the mall and treat myself.  I saw a couple of former students and chatted with them, but for the most part, I was alone with my thoughts for the next few hours.

I concluded with a bite at the food court.¬†¬†As I was walking toward the exit,¬†you all would never believe who was coming straight toward me! Ethan! Ethan who is now 15 and in the 10th grade! It was a surreal moment though I don’t know why.¬†

A couple of days¬†prior my aunt’s husband told me that he saw the kids at the license branch with my former SIL.¬† From that I concluded that she finally received custody and the fact that she made it a point to tell him that they now¬†lived with HER .¬† He also said that Evan kept asking to come over to their house.¬† My aunt called me later and told me she believed that was his way of getting to see me since he would not be allowed to¬†do so¬†outright.¬†

Also, Eliza had written me over the summer seeking my help in contacting their aunt regarding guardianship (because her sister no longer wanted the responsibility).¬† And as small as our “big” city is, I knew I would be bound to run into them sooner or later if this did happen.

I gave¬†Ethan a hug and a kiss and inquired about Evan.¬† It was an awkward moment. We both¬† wanted to say more but not in front an audience and only talked¬†for a few minutes because his uncle (my SIL’s husband) looked uncomfortable.¬†¬†Though he¬†has tried to stay neutral in the situation; I suppose he still has to defer to his wife.¬† I could see he knew that she would not be happy about our reunion.¬† But Ethan seemed pleased to see me.¬† I just wish Evan would have been with him.¬†

Last night I dreamed about the kids. Today I am still processing seeing him again after almost two years.¬† Next Monday marks the second anniversary of his father’s death. I am still being haunted by the ugliness of it all.

I feel like my enemies have won again. My SIL has the boys and has been arguing via FB with Eliza’s sister (she is the one who took them from me) regarding their social security checks!¬† Sadly they both only want the boys for the money they come with.

I mentioned that Eliza wrote early in the summer.¬† Here are the 3 of the 4 letters she sent after initially asking for my help in locating my husband’s sister:

7/9/10

Hi Morocco,

How are you? Have you heard anything from Shawn or her mom? I’m still waiting to hear something from them. I appreciate your immediate response- thank you. I have filed paperwork so I pray I receive a response from one of them soon.¬† Be Blessed

Always

El

10/5/10

Goodmorning M,

I pray all is well with you. I’m doing well by the grace of God. Morocco I really need your help. I need for you to mail me copies of anything you have regarding Evan’s condition. I need it as soon as you can get it to me. I’ll be home in a few months and I’ve been trying to get things ready ahead of time with family counseling. I would greatly appreciate this. I know you stayed on top of things and I will forever be grateful for the care you provided our boys. They ask me if I talk to you. Maybe if you are up to it we can get together when I get home after I get things together. Well I’ll let you go, have a blessed day.¬†

Sincerely

El

 10/13/10

Goodmorning Morocco,

Thank you so much I really appreciate it. I will contact you soon so that we can set something up. I talk to the boys but I don’t get to see them regularly. I know they are going to be excited to see you. I think it would be good for them. God has a way of working things out doesn’t He:)? I’ll close for now but I’ll be in touch.

Be Blessed M

Always

El

¬†Of course after meeting all of her requests, including contacting his sister and sending her over 250 pieces of paperwork detailing Evan’s condition, I have not heard from her.¬† I suppose I should have expected this from the same person who orchestrated her children’s removal from my home, sent no type of condolences after my husband’s death, and who slandered me in prison and ended up getting into a fight with Jazmine’s mom over her comments.

She also never mentioned that she had a modification hearing on October 19th in an attempt to get an early release.  I only found out because I received an email from the victim notification system.  I believe she wanted to use the paperwork to bolster the chances of having her sentence reduced.

I’ve done all I can do for her, so I foresee no reason for Eliza to contact me ever¬†again.¬† She probably never intended to allow me to see her boys.¬† That was just the dangling carrot to manipulate me into doing what she asked.¬† Unfortunately that shows that she still does not get it.¬† I did those things for her because that’s just the kind of person that I am.¬†

And I do believe she is right about one thing, God does have a way of working things out. He already knew of her ill intentions and arranged for me to run into Ethan.¬† I do believe I’ll being seeing Evan next!

The Card

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I just wanted to share the card that Kierra got for me for Mother’s Day.

The Power of a Praying Mother

Mom, I have no idea how many times

you’ve prayed for me

through the years,

how many times you’ve carried me

before the Lord in your heart.

But I want to tell you “Thanks.”

Thanks for living your faith

and doing your best

to be a blessing to your family.

Thanks for how you always

asked God’s protection,

guidance, and mercy for me –

Lord knows, I needed them all!

And most of all,

thanks for believing in me

when it would have been easier not to

and for making sure I knew

I was in your prayers.

All through my life, I’ve felt

as though there were two things

I could count on-

God’s love…and yours.

And today I really do believe

a praying mother can work miracles…

because, thanks to you,

I’m one of them.

Wishing you a truly blessed

Mother’s Day!

Hope you had a WONDERFUL Mother’s Day today. We tried to have fun and keep you happy today.¬† I know you are happy to be a full time Mommy now!¬† I know you enjoy it alot.¬† But I will always be here for you no matter what.

XOXO

Love Ya,

Kierra

Compliments of  MAHOGANY by Hallmark and Kierra!