Act of Kindness…

On Monday, I assisted my soon-to-be stepson achieve his first grade assignment for Martin Luther King Day. He had to do an act of kindness of which he was adamant about not doing. His father and I, at separate times, told him that it was an important thing to do; not just because it was his assignment, but because kindness is important. I told My Love that his son has books that he’s outgrown for his reading level and should sort through them and I’d take him to find a place to donate them. The books were sorted through and we ventured out. On the ride, I explained that there are children who do not have the luxuries he has and that when kindness is extended, it makes one feel good knowing that they’ve helped another. I further explained that each day, whether we realize it or not, someone does something nice for us. He seemed to get it.

I pulled into the parking lot of a local church and we went in; books in tow. I explained why we were there and the ladies thought it was a lovely gesture and explained to my Stepson that his actions were greatly appreciated and the books would get good use at the church. The lady wrote a letter to my Stepson’s school explaining his act and how much it was appreciated. Lesson learned…at least I hope it was anyway.

Sadly, many children are no longer taught the importance of acts of kindness. So many are spoiled and overindulged to the point of hedonism and narcissism. They expect things to be given to them at will and without challenge. This is a sad state of affairs for them, their parents, and their future lives if this behaviour is not corrected.

When Lil Lady was small, I saw early on that she was blessed with a compassionate heart and I nurtured and encouraged it. On one of her first trips to New York City, she was fascinated by the many sights and sounds surrounding her, but the thing that stood out the most, was how she reacted to the people she saw. She sized them up, she inquired about their varied appearances, and was take aback by the homeless. She inquired and I explained that sometimes things happen to people and they have to live on the streets and beg for food or other items to make it through the day. I bought fruit from a street vendor as we passed a homeless person and we carried on our way. On the trip back to Port Authority, she asked if she could buy more fruit, but give it to the homeless person we saw. I explained that he might not be there, but on our next trip she could buy two pieces of fruit and give one away. She was quite happy with that and from henceforth, that’s something she did. A mother’s heart exploded with joy for her daughters compassion. This practice went on for many years and also carried on to helping with the Angel Tree at the church we were then attending. The requirement was to pick a name and then fill a shoe box with small items we thought a child would like. This, I was told, I was not allowed to help with. A little bit of her birthday money was saved and it went toward the shoe box. Of course, I contributed where necessary, but the selection and packing was all her. Again, lessons learned!

Suffice it to say, if we do not install these practices not just in ourselves, but in our children, we can’t expect them to take acts of kindness seriously. Personally, I strive to give back as much as I can be items donated, a small sum of money, or my time. My Love and I discussed ways we could volunteer as a family and individuals. I’ve found an organization that collects donated items for families in need and we’re going to aid once a month is sorting through donated items and prepare them for said families. I’ve decided I want to be a part of Girls Inc. in order to help young girls. I’m not sure what My Love will find to do, but I’ll help him find something.

As we look at our lives, let us not forget how we got to where we are. Let us recognize and realize, many acts of kindness was a part of that journey. And once you’ve looked back, I hope you’ll find ways to perform your acts of kindness whenever you can.

I came across this site and it warmed my heart greatly. May it serve as an inspiration to you also.

Faith in humanity/acts of kindness

Blu

RIP to a Phenomenal Woman – Maya Angelou

maya-angelou-quotes-on-writing

Today, I am deeply saddened by the loss of Maya Angelou.  Aside from the amazing strides she made in and for society, black women primarily, but all women and the literary contributions, she made a huge impact on my life.  Mother Maya, as I’d always fondly referred to her as, touched my life greatly.  I possess many of her works, which served to inspire, encourage and uplift me into the woman I am today.  She rose above her so-called lacks, overcame much adversity, was a victor,  and a woman of high regard when many thought less of her.  She refused to settle for less and was inspired and encouraged to succeed against the odds…She did!

love-quotes-by-maya-angelou-185

Mother Maya was world renowned, which for a black woman is an amazing feat to accomplish.  Mother Maya taught us to be phenomenal, to be great, to be all that we could be and still strive for me.  Her presence, her voice, her will was awe worthy and commanding, yet dispensed with grace and dignity.

Quote_MayaAngelou_Phenomenal

I tend not to jump on the band wagon of those of celebrity who’ve passed, but in this instance, I’d be remiss if I didn’t.  Again, Mother Maya was and will continue to be a woman I honoured and felt greatly touched and influenced my life.  I’ve used her as a source of reference when mentoring young woman.  I’ve gifted her books to young woman so they, too, could be encouraged, inspired, and know their worth.

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The black community, the literary world, and many lives were blessed by her activism; her poise; her teachings and her passing is a great loss to them all. It is my hope that those who were touched, influenced, and affected by Mother Maya will continue her legacy in some form so that all she gave us will not be for naught.

STILL I RISE - MAYA ANGELOU

RIP Mother Maya, you’ll be greatly and sorely missed.

 

 

Yea, I said it!

Blog Challenge: Day 17 — A book you’ve read that changed your views on something

Given that I’m an avid reader, it’s kind of hard to narrow down the most stand out books.  But if we’re talking non-fiction, then

bible

 

 

has by far been the most inspiring, inspirational, encouraging, and enlightening books I’ve ever read.

This book comes to mind pretty quickly for some reason

the shack

I read it at a time in my life when I had a lot of questions about faith and forgiveness and after reading it, I felt I had gained a lot of clarity about each and also about myself.

 

Yea, I said it!

A question of faith…

It has been my experience that when faced with a trial that obviously seems contrary to what we’d want for ourselves, people tend to blame God for things not going right. A once faithful person, suddenly questions their faith and their God and lately, I’ve been experiencing that with a friend facing a divorce. Out of respect for her, I won’t air her business; however, I will say, I felt God manifest Himself quite openly through words I read in my devotions and through quotes that others had posted. Naturally, I shared these with my friend in an effect to open her heart and mind back to a positive state, but I realize that she’s in a downward state of being and needs to work through this phase in order to better receive what was shared.

Through my own life’s experiences, I chose to further trust my faith and listen to words of comfort and wisdom shared with me be they solicited or otherwise. I found it easier to trust my faith than trust man because it was man who created the pain or trial I was experiencing in the first place. I opened myself up to receive that which I may not have even been able to fully comprehend at that time if for no other reason than to plant the seed for fertilization and growth. The seeds eventually grew; as did I.

Life is a series of challenges, joys, highs and lows, disappointments, hurts, love; etc. and in the words of Aldous Huxley, “Experience is not what happens to you; it’s what you do with what happens to you”; very true and very wise words. Without varied experiences we cannot grow. Our lives are like seasonal changes; essential to growth, sustenance, and progression. We must live to experience and experience to live or we remain stagnant, bored, and boring. We can’t and should not seek to control everything in our lives, but instead be flexible and learn to roll with that which we experience and encounter in order to be a part of the ever-moving life cycle.

We must further realize that God works in His own time and not ours. Oftentimes, we think because we are believers and follow doctrine, we are entitled to our prayer requests being met without first truthfully looking into ourselves to determine if we are in fact worthy or ready to receive what we’re praying for. Yes, according to The Word, God says He’ll give you the desires of your heart, but are our desires pure? Are they selfish? Has the requester done their part in seeking God’s invention or intercession? These are things many do not consider; hence, later questioning God and/or their faith. Delay does not mean denial!

Old folks always told me that the space or dash on our headstones should count for something and that we shouldn’t want someone to lie at our eulogy and say, “they had or lived life” if they hadn’t. It’s something that has remained with me for most of my life. Yes, I cursed many a bad day or experience, but I’ve learned that without them I would not be the woman I am today. I rode the rough seas, navigated through life’s detours and I have a tale to tell. I took leap of faith, celebrated my trails turned triumphs, and again, have tales to tell. I celebrate life. I celebrate my faith. And I celebrate being unafraid to face adversity.

The following links are what have been pulse points this week. I share them hoping they’ll inspire, encourage, and allow you to also grow or be a positive influence to someone you may encounter.

God bless!
Seeking Guidance

Can we Really Trust God?

God’s Sovereign Delays

How To Stay Strong In Disappointment

Resting in the Faithfulness of God

God Acts On Our Behalf

Yea, I said that!

A Challenge…

I saw this image recently and was blown away by it.  It’s simple; however, it says so much and have decided to implement doing this and want to encourage you all to do the same.

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Create your own card based on this one and post it in various places in your work and town.  Find a bulletin board at work and post it and then go back to see if any of the tabs have been taken off.  Do the same at your local library, bookstore, supermarket, church or any place you can.

I think it can and will make a heck of a difference in someone’s day; maybe even your own.

Do it and let me know what happens!

 

Live the life you love; love the life you live!

Lyrically Speaking (again)…Hidden Away

The universe is really trying to convey a message or messages to me, because once again, the lyrics are speaking to me.

I enjoy Josh Grobans songs and Hidden Away is one I’ve liked for some time.  While I’ve listened to the lyrics, I must not have really heard them as they were yelling at me this morning. 

Over mountains and sky blue seas
On great circles, will you watch for me?
The sweetest feeling I’ve got inside
I just can’t wait to get lost in your eyes

And all these words that you meant to say
Held in silence day after day
Words of kindness that our poor hearts crave
Please, don’t keep them hidden away

Sing it out so I can finally breathe in
I can take in all the same
Holding out for something I believe in
All I really need today

I want to free your heart, I want to see your heart
Please, don’t keep your heart hidden away

You’re a wonder, how bright you shine
A flickered candle in a short lifetime

A secret dreamer that never shows
If no one sees you then nobody knows

And all these words you were meant to say
Held in silence day after day
Words of kindness that our poor hearts crave
Please, don’t keep them hidden away

Sing it out so I can finally breathe in
I can take in all the same
Reaching out for someone I believe in
All I really need today

I want to feel your love, will you reveal your love?
Please, don’t keep your love hidden away
I want to free your heart, I want to see your heart
Please, don’t keep your heart hidden away

Hidden Away

The recurring theme seems to be that I need to speak up, let my voice be heard, stop hiding (thoughts, emotions, etc.,).  These are not coincidences, but instead intercessions I need to heed.  I’m guilty y’all, but I’m listening and I’m hearing what God/the universe is telling me.  It’s not going to be easy boys and girls because you’re girl has a lot on her mind and much  that needs to be released.  It’s not going to be easy, but I’m going to do it. Phew!

Live the life you love; love the life you live!