Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Godly Role Models

The Survival of the Black Make in An Ever-Changing World

This past Sunday, I was the Speaker at Venable Chapel A.M.E. Church in my hometown for their Evening In White program. It is the best thing I have done in a while. The energy in the church warmed my spirit, penetrating me with boldness. The people who came didn't appear hostile when I peered out into the crowd. They were attentive, responsive, and seemed to grasp on to my every word. It feels good to know my words resonated with them. 

I want to share my speech with you. Hopefully, it will inspire, encourage, and uplift you. This world is a shady place. Know that there is always hope because God is always there/here for us all.

My Speech: 

We, as women, wear many hats. Yes, man’s job in the eyes of God should be the head of the household, but as women, we are its’ foundation. We build it up and hold it together. But once we discover our purpose, we can move mountains. I love being a woman. We are blessed to give life. What better gift than that. Men folk wouldn’t be able to endure such a task. My husband gets a headache and acts like the world is coming to an end. (I love my husband. Sorry, Bae!)

As I received the call from Sister Sharon about speaking tonight, I laughed to myself. I laughed because God moves swiftly, especially when we operate in His will. When you ask God for something and are specific and sincere in your asking, you have to be prepared when He answers. I prayed for elevation and boldness. It’s funny because this time last year, I would have been too afraid or concerned about what people would say to stand before you this evening. But when you know God, and have a relationship with Him…

When I found out about the topic for today’s event “Survival of the black male in an ever-changing world,” my spirit jumped. I immediately thought about an incident involving two young, black males I love dearly. How one saw the other doing something senseless and fell into the trap that the enemy tried to set for them both. Thank you for prayer warriors. The situation could have gone an entirely different way, BUT GOD!

1 Corinthians 15:33

“Do not be misled: “Bad Company corrupts good character.”

In today’s society, we find this statement to be true more times than not. Why? Because our young men buy into the whole “the white man, don’t want to see us doing well” mentality, or what the world has taught them instead of what we as parents have. Oh, what a copout. 

The cycle continues from one generation to the next. Why? Our minds haven’t been transformed. How many of you are familiar with Darwin’s Theory of Evolution? Survival of the fittest. We adapt to our environment.  If you want change, change the environment/situation.

The young men of this world today, especially our people, already have it bad due to the color of their skin. They can’t even walk down the street with a hoodie over their head without being harassed or murdered like an animal. And not just black men. Ya’ll remember Sandra Bland and countless others who have perished for having melanin in their skin. It’s sad when we have to teach our children to keep their head down so they can make it home to us in peace.

It’s time to wake up and step into our purpose to protect ourselves and our children. When they don’t walk in their purpose, the enemy moves in like a thief in the night, robbing them of good character. Their self-respect, self-worth, integrity, and loyalty is tested which ultimately leads them down a path of destruction. We, as women, the backbone of our nation, should walk in purpose to help our children discover theirs.  

Mark 8:36 states: What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, yet forfeit his soul?

Nowadays, young men think it’s cool to be followers instead of leaders. Many of them are born leaders but haven’t tapped into their full potential because they don’t see God in their homes. Society teaches them that not having both parents in the home causes behavior problems or learning issues. 

Society tries to sabotage our children before they are pushed out of the womb. Just because you are a single parent, that doesn’t mean God isn’t or can't be in your house. I’d rather teach my son how to be a gentleman than allow him to be raised by a man who doesn't know Jesus. But I do thank God for my husband.

We need Godly Role Models for our children. A boy is prone to listen when knowledge is spoken by another man. Whether it’s good or bad is the question we should ask ourselves. Be careful who you have around your children. If you want him to be respectful, respect yourself. Don’t let anyone disrespect you in front of him. If you do, you are setting the tone for the relationship you and he will have. Boys love their mothers. But allowing anyone to call you out of your name, use you as a punching bag, take from, talk down to, he will eventually do the same thing in his own relationship. 

When we embrace our purpose and walk in it, it doesn’t matter who is around us. We led by example. How many of you know that you can be a part of the world, but not of the world. There is a big difference. As women, mothers, sisters, aunts, grandmothers, we have to live in our purpose on purpose for the young men in our lives, our sons, grandsons, nephews.  

2 Corinthians 5:17 says, Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has gone, the new has come!  Simply put, when you know better, you do better.

This proves that you have power over your life because God gave you a brain, which works for your good if you use our mind, and uses it wisely.

Bad company can corrupt good character but a wise person, a person walking in the authority of God can transform himself with a renewed mind as well as those around him. Why? Because spirits are transferable and, people tend to do what they see opposed to what they are told.

Proverbs 19:21 states “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”

We can make our plans and set out to see them accomplished, but if we don’t pray and seek God’s direction—we could find ourselves drifting in an ocean of problems without a sail. Everything we do should begin and end with God in mind first. 

Sure we may get to a certain level of our employment, education, gifts, etc. But without walking in the purpose that God has for our lives, we will become stagnant at some point or another. Being Godly role models for the young men of today works the same way. We can’t see them doing wrong and turn a blind eye. Don’t call Sister Sally to gossip about what you saw Sister Helen’s son doing. As Christians, God gave us dominion over all things. Correcting a child in his wrongdoing is what we should do. Ya’ll know God’s word, “Spare the rod, and spoil the child.”

I dislike the way some people use social media, posting videos of fights instead of breaking them up or calling for help. Those same individuals who have their phones out recording the chaos should be the ones who are sent to jail or made to pay a fine. I bet the cycle will break then. Or, you see parents embarrassing their children by beating them or cussing them out, for all the world to see. That’s not parenting in my opinion. Why embarrass what God blessed you to protect and love?

Yeah, we have all fallen short, but the rod of correction isn’t something to make a spectacle out of. I know you heard the story about a father who embarrassed his teenage daughter for being disobedient by beating her as someone recorded it and put it on the internet for the whole world to see. Well, that same young girl was so embarrassed and ridiculed at school by her peers that she jumped from a bridge to her death. My question to that parent is, was it worth it?

On the other hand, take the lady who caught her sons burglarizing someone’s home. She disciplined her children the way any parent should, but because of the nature of discipline she took was arrested and sent to jail. Would it have been okay if the owner had been home and shot and killed them? Would it have been okay if she had done nothing and years from now those same young men ended up in prison? 

Society doesn't want parents to teach values and instill morals to our children. They want government funded correctional institutions filled with young black men to cut off their lineage. How can you build a legacy behind bars? How can you raise a son behind bars? I'm not saying a man cannot parent, but the task becomes harder when someone else is telling him when to eat, sleep, and S&$$. Same goes for a woman who's led by the correctional system.

Ephesians 6:4 says, “And you, Fathers do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and reprimand of the Lord.”

We have to discipline in love. We have to chastise in love. Not of the ways of the world. If we don’t, we are setting our children up for the ways of the world and the enemy to take them out.

Colossians 3:21: “Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.”

As parents, we have to govern ourselves according. Don’t be hypocrites. Times have changed. What worked for our parents with us may not be the best approach for our own children. We sometimes have to get on their level to keep the line of communication open. 

And, not every child will receive the same way. I can’t talk to my seven-year-old the way I talk to my nineteen-year-old. I can’t take a belt to her as I do to him. I may have to use other tactics like a slap upside the head. No, I thank God for my children. I am blessed. My daughter and I are friends. My son, ya’ll ask me in a few years once he becomes a teenager if we still getting along. LOL…

I know how to handle them because I know how my God handles me. Aren’t you glad God is not like man? Some of us would be up the creek without a paddle. 

My Daddy only had to whip me once. And it was only one lick with his belt. I think my feelings were hurt more than anything. But Momma…Can ya’ll see the welts still on me? Shan, you still have yours? LOL

I thank God for my Momma. She taught me right from wrong, and even when I didn’t choose right, I knew that it was instilled in me. She used a belt, a switch, a shoe, or anything else she could get her hands on, but I thank God she didn’t spare the rod. I know I wouldn’t be standing here today.

Romans 8:28 “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

No matter how hard we try to raise young men of a certain character, if they don’t get to know God for themselves, there is nothing more we can do for them other than prayer. Having a personal relationship with God kept me from succumbing to evil. Having a personal relationship with God keeps me humble, compassionate toward others, and working hard each day to get it right so that I can one day have everlasting life. 

To be absent from the body is to be present with God. But don’t get it twisted; there are many requirements to meet Jesus. Entering into the kingdom of heaven isn’t a hard task, but it’s not an easy one either. Just like everything else we desire in life, being consistent is key.

Life happens! No one is exempt. If there ever is a time you are, you are no longer amongst the land of the living.

Raising Godly young men requires great effort on our part. We have to walk in our purpose to help them discover and deploy their own. We have to lead by example and not live as hypocrites. We have to have a personal relationship with God so that our relationship with them isn’t destroyed by the enemy when it is threatened. And it will be! 

We have to teach them that not everyone they encounter is their friend, or has to be. Jesus rolled with twelve, and even some of them betrayed Him. Lastly, we have to teach them how to pray so that they can pray for themselves. 

In my closing, I will leave you with this. Leading a life pleasing to God is simple. We have to operate in His will. We have to know who we are and whose we are to teach anyone else. 

Discover your purpose by seeking God if you don’t already know what it is that you were put on earth to do.

Develop your purpose with intentions of God so you will obtain longevity in whatever it is that you do.

Deploy your purpose with integrity, dignity, and Christlike characteristics. The late great Dr. Maya Angelou said it best, “People will always remember the way you made them feel.” And word of mouth travels vastly whether good or bad. I challenge you all to live virtuously as Women of Purpose and see how God changes your life.

If you don’t have a young man in your life that you can sow into, I challenge you to find one and pour into him. It takes a village, and having a Godly role model is all someone might need to get in the will of God. You can very well change someone’s life for the better, and in return, that same young man can spark a new way of thinking in his environment. It’s all a cycle. And a bad cycle has to be broken to make it better. 

Thank you!

This was my speech. I hope you enjoyed it. 

Until next time, Be Inspired, Be Encouraged & Be YOU!!!

Purple Hugs,
KeKe Chanel

Monday, June 20, 2016

King James

Heart of A Champion

Congratulations Cavs!

There will always be a winner and a loser in the sport of competition whether we want it to be or not. The way we handle the situation determines how people will define us. Lebron James AKA King James is the perfect example of a champion. Last night, when the Cleveland Cavaliers made history by winning their first championship, he displayed the attributes of what champions are made of.

He played his heart out as he always does. He remained cool, calm, and collected when faced with adversity, naysayers, and even “light-skinned” trash talking. Being down 3-1, he didn’t give up and pushed his team to press forward. He stepped up as the leader he is and got it done! He even hugged and thanked oh boy, David Blatt, who talked badly about him leaving Cleveland to play elsewhere. Many in the city turned their backs on him, burned his jersey, and booed him when he came to play with his new team. What did Lebron do? He returned to the city he loves which persecuted him and won them a championship. He didn’t hold grudges, retaliate, or bad mouth them. He remained humble, knowing his worth, and the purpose that God has for him. Forever, the heart of a champion. We can all take a lesson from Lebron and become better as human beings. 

I’m not saying he doesn’t have flaws, we all do, but he hasn’t shown that side to the public. He almost went there in game 6, though. LOL, I still wanna know what he said to Curry when he gave him the stank look, looking him up and down. Apparently, he was rubbed the wrong way.

Now, I like Steph Curry, but this NBA Finals has brought out a side in him that I wouldn’t fathom him possessing. I hate to lose just like anyone else but don’t become unsportsmanlike. I know him and Lebron are probably friends, but damn! Boy, stop… You can’t win them all. Be happy for your friend. 

(This cap, though, Lebron… petty much! LOL)

Like the real champion that he is, Lebron keeps smiling. Never allow anyone to throw you off course or push you out of character. Life is too short to dwell in animosity. Life’s too precious to live with regret, ignorance, and giving others power over you. Live! Laugh! Love! Enjoy the blessings God has given. Endear the failures, but press forward so you can appreciate the victories. They will come…

Remember, your attitude will determine your altitude no matter if you believe it or not. Someone is always watching. Dr. Maya Angelou said it best, “People will never forget the way you made them feel.”

Well done, Lebron! You are truly one of a kind with the heart of a champion. I salute you…

By the way, the first person he asked for was his wife. Rihanna, go sit yo ass down somewhere before Savannah takes her earrings off! 

Until next time Be Inspired, Be Encouraged, & BE YOU! 

Purple Hugs,
KeKe Chanel

Photo credits: google.com

Monday, June 13, 2016

Where is the Love??

"Man In The Mirror"
Michael Jackson got it right when he wrote the heartfelt lyrics to "Man in the Mirror." Rest in peace lyrical genius...

"I'm gonna make a change for once in my life... I’ve been a victim of a selfish kind of love... it’s time that I realize…I'm gonna make a difference gonna make it right... I'm starting with the man in the mirror...I'm asking him to change his ways...if you wanna make the world a better place take a look at yourself and make that change..." (Lyrics aren't in order)  

    (Photo source: Pinterest.com)
As I drove my kids in the car this morning, the profound hit song played on the radio during The Steve Harvey Morning Show. I listened intently, pondering each word. My soul jolted. My heart raced, while my spirit wept. The powerful message written gave me a new outlook on life. Although I love hard and try my best to treat people the way I want to be treated, I realized I must do more. Let's face it. The only One who can judge anyone in the way they choose to live is God. But, we are all guilty of such behavior. 

      (Photo source: Jamiffer.blogspot.com)

My Pastor's message at church on yesterday was about purpose. Loving on purpose. Being obedient on purpose. Living Godly on purpose. It's not a hard task to fulfill. It's really quite simple. We just have to want to do it. How many of us accomplish the things we put our mind to? Each of us who decide to hit the ground running. It's called persistence. Loving and treating others with respect and dignity is no different. It's a choice. It take effort, which we all are capable of.

(Photo source: thegreatergood.berkeley.edu.)
Steve Harvey said something this morning that resonated with me. He said, "the things you do tomorrow will follow you today." We may not all agree with him, but it's true. Our choices will shadow us for the rest of our lives. People may forgive, but they never forget. So the question remains, what kind of person will you choose to be? How will people remember you once you depart from this world? Will you be remembered for negative or positive energy left behind?  Take a look in the mirror. Are you happy with the reflection you see? If your answer is unclear. It is time for change in your life. Some may not like, want, or accept change, but it's inevitable if you are a child of God striving to reach the pearly gates and enter heaven. 

        (Photo source: The Odyssey online)
Senseless acts of terror in our great nation. Innocence lost. Why? For living! Man, shouldn't be allowed to take matters into his own hands, killing people who thought a night of fun with friends was living their lives in peace, pridefully. The color of someone's skin shouldn't determine how he or she is treated. If you don't agree with the way someone lives, don't go around them. My grandmother Ruth taught me that if I don't have anything nice to say, keep my mouth shut. Speak when spoken to. Love others and treat them with kindness. Do unto others as I would have them do unto me. My other grandmother Melissa Lubertha taught me to pray for people even when they do me wrong. I thank God for both women. I miss them dearly. Their teachings are a part of me making me the woman I am. I push daily to be better knowing they are shining their lights down on me. 

   (Photo source: Google.com)

Today, our nation is shaken, enraged, grief-stricken. The Orlando nightclub shootings that occurred days ago is proof we are in a world where being ourselves isn't enough. Where who we associate with or call friend is considered wrong. Where who we love can get us slaughtered like animals. In fact, animals get more love and respect than human beings. Where a celebration turns into a bloody massacre because someone carries hatred in their heart using a gun to carry out a hate-crime which will leave an impact on our nation forever. (But, you also claim to love God.) We cannot love God no matter what religious preference we live by and carry hate of any kind in our heart. Anyone who believes otherwise is sadly mistaken! I hear people say "it's paying time" or "it's time to start praying". When is there not a time to pray? I pray daily. I pray when things are good and bad in my life. It works...try it!

    (Photo source: npr.com)

            (Photo source: Al Jazeera.com

Love isn't hard to do. It isn't an incurable disease that will turn us into zombies. Love is God, and through God's love, we can overcome any obstacle big or small. There is nothing love cannot provoke a positive reaction to. Love doesn't or shouldn't see race, color, religion, gender, class, etc. wake up people!!! God isn't pleased and is on His way back. Don't get caught in ungodly acts or with matters of the heart that will lead your soul to spend eternity in the pits of the abyss. Start today with change...

To all the victims, their families, friends, and loved ones, may God grant you peace. May you find comfort and strength to endure such a tragic time knowing He is with you. Look to the hills from which cometh your help. Amen.

             (Photo source: Google.com)

Until next time Be Inspired, Be Encouraged & Be YOU!

Purple Hugs, 
KeKe Chanel