The Prayers of Black Women: Lord Help Me Make It Safely to Shore

Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow; it empties today of its strength.  –Corrie Ten Boom
Artist:  Henry Lee Battle
Artist: Henry Lee Battle

Lord, I am worried.  And I am [sigh] not alone.  I need for you to minister to my lowly spirit and those that feel the same as I do.  Lord, we need to hear from you.  Make your Holy presence known in giving us signs that everything is going to be alright.  Lord, I’m not sure of the challenges my brothers and sisters in Christ are facing this morning but my challenges for today are:  I have no money to meet the demands of my responsibilities and financial obligations.  And adding to my list of worries last night the stove decided to join the refrigerator and go on the blink.  And my efforts to secure financial stability and generational legacy seem fruitless.  The feeling of defeat is hovering over my head as a continual reminder I am failing as a daughter, sister, mother, wife, and entrepreneur.

Please, Lord, keep the defeatist attitude away.  Please help me and those that feel like me stay positive in the midst of life’s storms.   Become our lighthouse and guide us safely to harbor oh Lord.  Amen

Your Loving Daughter,
Annette

Inspirational Fridays: Aging With and Without Regrets

As my sister celebrated her birthday this year she was and is unquestionably delighted to turn 50. I on the other hand did not look forwards to turning another year older.  Yet my 52 birthday was creeping closely and did manage to arrive on scheduled.   My birthday is never late!   Honestly, I really wish after I had turned 30 my birthday would come around once every 10 years.

It appears my regretful and wounded soul continues to look for the life that was lost so long ago.

My person questions all of life’s ambitions, my life’s ambitions, to a point where I’m silently asking the following:  What makes the aging graceful and ready to grow older and old?  What makes the aging mean and bitter as they do grow older and old?  And what will I become as I age and my physical beauty continues to fade?  Will I be a sweet old woman that has few regrets?  Or will I become an old bag of bitter bones that is mean because I failed to live my life to its fullest?

Truthfully, I would say at this point I am becoming by default ‘an old bag of bitter bones that is mean because I failed to live my life to its fullest.’

Are you shocked at my brutal conclusion of my self awareness examination?  Are you shocked that I can be as truthful about what I inwardly harbor?  Don’t be shocked because there are other’s just like me.  Perhaps you are like me.  Maybe you are worse than me.  But it is never too late for us to change the course of our lives as long as we continue to breathe hope.

At this moment my beloved Colorado is under flood watch.  Because of flooding many of the smaller cities and towns have been force to evacuate. Lives are being uprooted by force of nature and people have to take shelter of safety in unfamiliar places.  Uncertainty about the course of their lives looms over the evacuees’ heads as they wait for the storm to subside.

After carefully watching video footage of flooding areas in Colorado I have come to the conclusion, it is the amount of life’s storms and their surges that determines if we will age gracefully or bitter.

And regrettably sometimes our personal lives from beginning to end are under flood watch or in the eye of the storm.

At least my life is consistently under storm watch; and often my poor choices continue to place me in the midst of raging floods.  And, since, I didn’t know how to swim to safety I have found myself spiritually and emotionally drowning over and over again.  As a result, I regret a few things I have done, moreover, my biggest regrets are the things I failed and continue to fail to do; therefore, for me aging is a big reminder how I wasted my talents and my life.

With remorse I must write, my life [outside of my children] was squandered on people and things that could not validate my existence.  In a nutshell, I confess, I spent the majority of my life looking for validation from people who had never been validated themselves.   So when I turned 50 I felt life was over for me.  I felt nothing about me depicted a life of success and that included the children I dearly love.

But as I continue on this journey we call life, every day I am reminded people age 50 and over that are living wonderful lives with little to no regrets.  And Lillie McCloud is one of those people.  She is an amazing singer.  She has an amazing outlook about her life.  She does not regret putting her singing career on hold to raise her children.  At the age of 54 she feels now is her time to fulfill her dream.  I just love her confidence during her X Factor audition.  She selected the right song. She wore the right outfit. Her persona said what she stated “I’m here to win” as she sang Cece Winans’ song “Alabaster Box.” Everything about Lillie says age 50 is where it’s at!  Check her out:

Becoming More Than Just a Survivor

I realize today is “Taboo Tuesday” but I need to switch up my message.  Lately it seems as if I am having such a hard time with life.  As it appears I’m going through the storm of uncertainty alone.  Yet, something deep within whispers to my soul that  there are others that feel as I do about life.

This might come across as TMI (too much information) but everyday I sit in the bathroom an contemplate my life, the lives of my children, the lives of their children and so forth and so on.   And to top things off is:  most people say I should not worry about those I will never meet.  But, I think differently because I have come to learn that the past always step on the heels of the future.  And I am trying desperately to change the course of my family’s outcome that was affected by my teen choices.

What I want for myself I also want for my children and my descendants.  I want to be “more than just a survivor” and I want my children and my descendants to be people that live life on the plus-side.  I guess what I am trying to express here is that I want my children and my descendants to be ordinary people doing extraordinary things!

This morning as I sat in the bathroom lost for words to pray about my current state of mind I picked up a book titled “The Power Of A Praying Woman” by Stormie Omartain.  Her words of wisdom confirmed that I am not alone in the sea of uncertainty, as her words of wisdom renewed my desire by reassuring with spiritual reminders God wants me to have life more abundantly.

I found Mrs. Omartain’s words so powerful and note worthy  that I shared them below:

More Than Just a Survivor

Stormie OmartianIf you’re like me, you don’t want to live the kind of life where you are barely hanging on.  You don’t want to merely eke out an existence, find a way to cope with your misery, or just get by.  You want to have the abundant life Jesus spoke of when He said, “I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).

We don’t want to be women who hear the truth but seldom act in faith to appropriate it for our lives.  We don’t want to be forever grappling with doubt, fear, insecurity, and uncertainty.  We want to live life on purpose and with purpose.  We find it boring to live like a baby, feeding only on milk.  We want the solid food of God’s truth so we can grow into a life that is exciting and productive.

None of us enjoys going around in circles, always passing through the same territory and coming back to the same problems, same frustrations, same mistakes, and same limitations.  We don’t want to become calloused, hard-hearted, bitter, unforgiving, anxious, impatient, hopeless, or unteachable.  We don’t want to end up with a negative attitude that says, “My situation will never be any different because it hasn’t been any different for a long time.”  We want to break out of any self-defeating cycle of repeated patterns and habits and be able to transcend ourselves, our limitations, and our circumstances.  We want to be more than just a survivor.

We want to be an overcomer.  We want to be a part of something greater than ourselves.  We want to be connected to what God is doing on earth in a way that bears fruit for His kingdom.  We want to have a sense of purpose in our lives.  We want to abound in God’s love and blessings.  We want it all.  All God has for us.  But we can never achieve that quality of life outside the power of God.  And then only as we pray.