A Mellow Melody

Serenity surrounds the sweetness of a sound. Superfluous, like raging waters as you relax listening to a mellow melody.  Flowing like jazz it creates a peace often untouched and out of reach.

A mellow melody can be felt, embraced or created in the mind of the beholder. It can be generated from positive thoughts and from a memory of a song, a moment or a flavor of something you ate or smelled. Mine is all of the above. But it’s also the thought of my canine niece and nephew who my sister affectionately calls Mellow (male), Melody (female).

But in life it takes on a whole other form, people write about mellow melody, like Charlie Rich from 1975 or to a more recent, more familiar Kirk Franklin who wrote about “Melodies from Heaven;” rain down on me, rain down on me. Or maybe thinking of mellow jazz music by Fourplay, Dave Koz, Gerald Albright, oh I could go on forever here as I love jazz. And it would not feel without mentioning my favorite Najee. Oh, and Maysa. It’s something in the music that when we listen to it, it gives a mellow melody to whatever is happening in our lives.

As people, we are also known to become more mellow as we mature.  When something becomes mellow, it gets softer or more relaxed. I recall my parents saying that “you mellow with age”  and while I didn’t quite get it when i was younger, it simply meant that my  aggressive behavior that I showed as a child would take s back seat with widsom; that my smart mouth (more so my sister,  you know it’s true Sissy) would be tamed to perfection of knowing when not to say all you think;  and that impatience would simmer to a understanding that it’s never just about YOU. I am there, LOL. If my parents were still present in this earth I would let them know, humbly, that they were so RIGHT.

Truthfully we all have or let me rephrase that and say should have (those over 40 especially) come to a place of living a mellow melody where drama is untolerated, and intolerable. Where the presence of peace is all we desire. To live transparently because we have matured to walk boldly in truth and in knowing who we are via life’s experiences.

We embrace life knowing that life evolves and so should we becoming the mellow melody we create. Seek your place of peace so that the melody of life can mellow within your heart.

Throughout the Day

Running , running; always going to get, gotta find, looking for a peace of mind. How may I help you, what do you need, can somebody, somewhere, help me please. Hi , How Are you,? fine they say, but maybe if we stopped they really might say.

Good morning, good night, made it through another day, how about you? Hello, I am good, nothing much to say, another dollar another day things didn’t go my way.

Let me tell you about this, or it maybe about that, at any rate, its just chit chat. Oh my goodness, really you don’t say. How about him or her they say. Hey let me hit you back, I might just say. Maybe tomorrow or another day. Come on over, or I may stop through there, but wait as tomorrow is now yesterday.

Gotta keep running, can not stop today. Do I wanna hang, come go you say. Wait, let me see, my calendar is full, How about next week, that might just work for me. Oh okay, I check next week, but then next week is next month you see.

Just a running time got past me. Now I can’t stop so suddenly. Then when it seemed like there was nothing left I pulled that dusty book of the shelf. As I opened it, I began to see that life was forever passing me. Time was here, but now it’s gone and all I ended up with was my song,  wait let me see, I will hit you back, maybe next week but now they are gone.

Take time, when there’s no time, because next time is not promised.  Love today like love was lost, find it in the present at all cost. Keep your word as it may be the last they ever heard.

Communication Codes

There’s a language only understood by the family. A stranger or outside cannot interpret the communication because of the code. Researchers have studied to understand the number of languages and it varies between 5,000 and 7,000, all contingent on dialects.

Our English  language is heard across the globe as a common communication form. When heard it can be translated, reinterpreted, and if communication can’t be heard or seen, it can be transferred to sign language or Braille. Whatever the method the receiver has to be able to transpose each syllable to grasp a full understanding.

This isn’t just for humans, but also in the animal kingdom, for example let’s consider the woodpecker. Despite the volume of noise his beak generates and the annoyance of it, the woodpecker (not known as a vocal bird, and he certainly doesn’t sing like the parakeet) is making a sound to express a need. He uses his pecking to communicate with other birds;  to attract a mate, to warn off predators and rivals and as a way to mark his turf.  Sounds like a dog, right, marking his territory.  Imagine that.  For the woodpecker this particular type of pecking is known as “drumming,” and woodpeckers often seek out hard surfaces like wood to ensure the sound is loud and able to be transmitted long range. They want to be heard. 

Another form of communication is the Morse code which transmits almost the same, with clicking (a series of one-off tones or lights) to make a sound, which is only understood by a skilled listener who interprets the code. I associate each of these communication forms to that of  the Holy Spirit whose language in other utterances or tongues is only interpreted in the spiritual realm.  This transmission is understood by God only to protect the believer, send out a battle cry, to communicate in  heaven, what is needed here on earth. As believers we never have to wonder if our communication is being heard, as God hears our hearts and we have a language that carries to Him, and Him alone to meet our needs (1st Corinthians 14:22 – Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not: but prophesying serveth not for them that believe not, but for them which believe). 

Do you believe ?

 

House Care

Our bodies are the house to the Spirit. In the capacity of our existence we nurture this house with our actions and experiences. This portal to our daily walk is intertwined by what we eat, what we drink, what we listen to, and what we watch, or what we do.  It’s also developed by association. Who we develop our friendships with,  who we hang out with, who’s in our “clicks or “posse,” better yet, our ever present BFF’s.  Cliche’s like “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree,” or “birds of a feather, flock together,”  is a core adage to how our house is built. It cultivates how we think and who we eventually become.

Think about it. Have you ever had a close friend you hung out with? This person was your “ace,” then one day they decide they want to experience with cigarettes or drinking and said hey, try this. You know you didn’t want to, but they igged you on until you gave in. Or better yet, that companion of yours who you love asks you to go with them on a pick up, its illegal and you know it, but go along anyway, then end up compromising your life. In either case, the choice is controlled by your desire to be accepted. To be liked or loved. I think everyone has at some point in our lives did something that wasn’t our best decision, and often it was for someone else’s interest.

Yet, these bodies (Our houses) are living temples, designed by God to be established here in the earth for His glory.  This temple must not be treated as if there was another or like it can be replaced. Its value cannot be weight in gold or silver. With every breath and every heart beat we are positioned for greatness. Positioned for success and the antithesis of that, known as problems.

Yet we must look at problems as the pathway to our destiny. As we walk through this life, every obstacle comes to change you, make you or challenge you to your better self. Problems are predictors of the endurance or strength of your house. Just like the 3 little pigs. The wolf (symbolic of life’s problems) came and said I will huff and puff and blow the house down. But the one pig whose house was firmly rooted,  had a solid foundation and no matter how hard the wolf puffed, the house stood.  We are that House, when we stand on God’s word.

 Your House on the Rock

 “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.  And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it (Matthew 7:24-27).

In this know you are more than able, more capable to overcome any situation or circumstance. It won’t always feel good or be easy, but God can give you strength when you trust His word.

 

High Places

There are unseen battles fought everyday that give victories in our lives. These battles are not physical, but in the heavenly realm. We wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (Ephesians 6:12). The high places in our thoughts, high places on our jobs, high places at our place of worship. Let’s not get it twisted even in church there’s a battle for your soul, warfare continues to try and keep you from God’s divine power.

We are taught in God’s word to be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour (1 Peter 5: 8). Yet when the deception, misguidings and tricks of the enemy surface we forget our weapons that are to carry with us daily our covering through God’s word so we can be victorious. 

Maybe I am the only one who struggles daily to keep my mind focused on God’s promises. The only one who says why me? I mean if I am joint heir by the blood of Jesus, why does it appear that I cannot overcome? Well, it’s because I am focused on me. Not the One who came so that I could live life more abundantly. My fixation is on the problems or the circumstances  just as Peter did when he lost focus walking on the water, although he knew Jesus called him.  I lose focus and sink into the depths of my own self pity, my own water so to speak, as many do. Our circumstance becomes bigger  than our God and our doubt is deeper than the ocean.  We’re  being entangled to lose faith.  But if we recall that  the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds (2 Corthinans 10:4) we are then, and only then victorious.

Remember that you must put on the whole armour of God, daily. This is the only way to defend that battles in the high places.

Ephesians 6: 11-18,  Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand,  Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness, and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints.

Refined for Beauty

Precious jewels look so beautiful, untouched by the external forces of life. Their history unknown, and possibly not discussed when glaring, as we window shop. We think, forget the past. History is a mystery,  leave it that way.  Yet without the story we forget the glory. Then we judge by what we see without knowing how the cover came to be.

Diamonds and pearls are the heart of a girl who can’t wait to be fashioned as she wears these most precious jewels. Yet, each of these stones overcame circumstances of extreme pressure to be formed into the brilliance they possess. Diamonds and pearls take years to form. For example, oysters develop pearls as a result of a reaction from a shell, bone, coral or a parasite that has invaded them and irritates their soft tissue, causing the oyster to produce secretions called “nacre” which begins to surround  the foreign object and over time, which can be anywhere between one to twenty years these nacre layers build around the irritant and forms what we see. A beautiful pearl. Now natural diamonds (not the man made ones) endure very high temperatures and pressure at depths of 87 to 118 miles in the Earth’s surface. Diamonds are brought close to the earth through deep volcanic eruptions. This pressure combining earthly chemical emulsions bring forth brilliance that we go to the jewelry store to purchase. Amazingly the end results, or the effect, of what is seen does not detail the immense pain of the experience it took to form. And this is life. While we say, don’t judge a book by its cover, but we do, we really shouldn’t. The story of one’s success or lack there of cannot be assumed as we dont know their story. I mean life is hard and it can be cruel, just down right mean at times. Every step in the right direction can sometimes take you two steps back. But do not be deterred or dismayed by its pressures. We must become like the elements of beauty seen in diamonds and pearls. Refined for beauty.

To do this you must surround yourself with positive motivation (self nacre) to constantly have the Yes I Can spirit. Then with positive people who will serve as the external nacre of life, engulfing you, and often helping you to achieve an desired end. Set goals, the higher the better, to make that pressure form so you can dig deep and then project high to allow the crytalizstion of life to bring forth your brilliance.  No one ever said it would be easy, but it will be worth it.

We all are diamonds and pearls in the rough of life. Being formed on the potters wheel. And with each crack, each breakdown, each tear, and tear; each lonely night; every addiction, every moment you feel rejection, and all the pressures to be somebody, to be accepted in a world that seemingly does not care or have compassion, know that YOU are made with purpose. You are designed by the Master Potter, God, who said, For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future (Jeremiah 29:11).  Nothing can come into your life that isn’t a part of the bigger picture. And while we don’t see the reasons why, we must know that God is in charge, there’s a plan for your life to crystallize and become the precious brilliance God planned. Kintsugi.

Extra Food for thought: We must learn to value our broken pieces, Kintsugi.

Enjoy the video: https://vimeo.com/90734143

 

 

Truth

We were intuitively built, with microfibers, of subconscious awareness that we often ignore. While some say, sixth sense or something told me, I say Holy Spirt, reveal truth.  The Holy Spirit takes on the role of Guide and Counselor, leading us in the way we should go and revealing God’s truth (Luke 12:12; 1 Corinthians 2:6–10).

Yet as believers this leap of faith to know that we can trust in His leading is difficult. And to be honest, walking by faith is no easy task. Many of us are from the “Show Me State,” we only believe in what we see. In our minds to walk by faith (Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen, Hebrews 11:1) makes us gullible or unrealistic, right?  Afterall, who would believe us. We would begin to look like the little boy who cried wolf.  But we cannot be faulted on the instruction we were taught as children. We may feel this way because we have been disappointed by someone we trusted. Someone we loved. Someone we just knew would have our backs, but our trust too many times ended in disappointment.  Then that same belief becomes difficult to transfer in the spiritual realm. Guilty by association. We are representative of the fabric we are familiar with, the tapestry of our experiences.

Imagine, you ask God to reveal truth to you about a relationship or friendship that you have been feeling something isnt right and should be released, but you ignore those promptings because your experience has been that this is what happens when, and surely we don’t want to be perceived as “carrying baggage”  from our past.  Or say, you seek Him for guidance because there’s an offense you have and unforgiveness has taken root.  Then you feel that prompting again and He says go ask for forgiveness. Immediately defenses go up, like what ??!!, it wasn’t my fault, why must I ask for forgiveness. Truth again, yet forgiveness is never about the perpetrator, but removing that yoke of offense from us that when left unchanelled can and will block our ability to receive.

Yes, it’s difficult , but we must remember, He is the Way, the Truth and the Life (John 14:6).  When we follow Him, there’s always victory.  Let God direct you, allow him to show you truth, His Truth, because what I have come to know is that without His Truth we fall to the schemes and devices of untruth.  Leading a life that was never intended for us. Start today to get to that place of hearing, knowing and believing that, yes, the Truth does set you free to live in peace and joy.

Blocks

Blocks are in our lives from infancy. We learn to build them for fun, creating the basis of our social development.  We have Lego, Fisher Price and then the games we played on the block.

In life we continue to form blocks. A block is defined by Webster as a solid piece of substantial material especially when worked or altered to serve a particular purpose.  Architects use blocks to design buildings;  in swimming a starting block serves as a release point to start the course; whereas in medicine if a person has heart issues they may need a heart block using a local anesthesia.

While there is security and safety in blocks they also build up walls, preventing access. We do this innately to protect ourselves from hurt, from disappointment, and often times from ourselves. These blocks are obvious to others but hidden from within. How many blocks have been set up in your life ? Roadblocks we call them. Mental roadblocks when we say we can’t learn a new skill; physical roadblocks when those last twenty pounds refuse to fall off so we quit; emotional roadblocks because we have been hurt so many times that we shut  down and shut off or spiritual roadblocks when we don’t believe or have faith.

I must confess I have many, all determined by the audience I am with. But I have come to understand that these block while protective and needed can also limit the invitation of others. Clutch your fist right now, you not only limit giving out, but receiving in as well. Blocked.

Again, am I suggesting that we don’t use blocks, or just let access be open in our lives. Absolutely not, but I am suggesting that we gage why the block is there and make certain that the restriction of it isn’t limiting your opportunity as well.

 

Thought Life

Our position in life follows our thought life and represents the presence of activity within time. And within that space of time,  surrounding us, are interactive forces that we are capable of controlling. Its the lifeline, within our mouth, and it’s called the tongue. Author, Charles Capps, wrote about “The Tongue, A Creative Source,” he goes on to say “Words are the most powerful things in the universe! The words you speak will either put you over in life or hold you in bondage. Many peope have been held captive in their circumstances by their own words. The absence of God’s Word in your life will rob you of faith in His ability. Receive from God!”

We must come to the place of knowing that with our own mouths we possess the ability to speak life just by how we react to situations and by how we control our thoughts (the power of life and death are in the tongue -Proverbs 18:21).  Everything that comes into being needs a source. And it needs to be placed in a position to thrive. Think of plants. Those that are unwatered, wither and die. Those that are properly watered, grow and are sustain. In in lifeform its the same.

Has there been any situation that you can recall where you were thinking a thought about a person that you hadn’t seen for quite a while. Then as the thoughts continue your desire increases. Then by coincidence or not, you run into that person and you say, ” hey, I had been thinking of you,” but was that encounter a product of your thoughts or simply a unplanned event?

Our thoughts give life, they propel us towards an activity or action, or they repel us from the same. How we exercise our innate desires is up us. Choosing is the only variable to consider. What do you desire? It’s not magic or a name it and claim it. Really it’s a matter of determining for yourself that you will not quit until the end goal is obtained. It will require you to work,  and keep your thoughts in motion towards your desire.

How about a 30 day challenge to control your tongue and thoughts? Lets walk Philippians 4:8: brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things (NIV).  Practice how to redistribute the pattern of intended thought; towards active intention of thought. If you are willing to try, send an email direct to me. You say what’s in it for me, well let’s just say, you know what happens when you quit, let’s see what happens when you don’t.

The Highest Form

What is love? Baby don’t hurt me, don’t hurt me no more. Moreover, what’s love got to do with it? The unexplainable, undeniable moment when you realize the love bug has its squeeze on you.  The Emotions, sung about it, Whoa, whoa you get the best of my love; Earth, Wind, and Fire sung about Loves Holiday,  and  Minnie Riperton, sung about Loving You.  But my favorite is an old school, old school by Burt Bacharach and Hal David,  sung by Dionne Warwick, Alfie.  This would be my first introduction to love songs as my Mother sung this song to my sister and I when we were kids. What I didn’t understand then was the beauty of love, nor what it meant.

Love, in its purest form is sacrificial. It’s the highest form of exchange one can give of themselves.  Some love as if love is a casual encounter, adjustable to their needs and subject to their personal desires.  While others have learned that love is based on denying self. For God so loved that He gave, His only begotten Son (John 3:16);  And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love (1 Corinthians 13:13). Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud (1 Corinthians 13:4). I like to refer to the entire book of 1 Corinthians 13 as a love story.  As no greater love can be expressed.  But until we take time to return to the plan of love and the truth of love,  only then will see the highest effect of love in our lives. In the meantime I hear my Mother’s voice singing –

What’s it all about, Alfie?
Is it just for the moment we live?
What’s it all about when you sort it out, Alfie?
Are we meant to take more than we give
Or are we meant to be kind?
And if only fools are kind, Alfie
Then I guess it is wise to be cruel
And if life belongs only to the strong, Alfie
What will you lend on an old golden rule?
As sure as I believe there’s a heaven above, Alfie
I know there’s something much more,
Something even non-believers can believe in
I believe in love, Alfie
Without true love we just exist, Alfie
Until you find the love you’ve missed you’re nothing, Alfie
When you walk let your heart lead the way
And you’ll find love any day, Alfie
Alfie

Written by Burt Bacharach, Hal David • Copyright © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC