God’s Little Nugget: Day One

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These are dark times, there is no denying.  Our world has perhaps faced no greater threat than it does today.  But I say this to our citizenry:  We, ever your servants, will continue to defend your liberty and repel the forces that seek to take it from you!  Your Ministry remains, strong.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1

Good morning, soul!  Did I forget to mention I’m a Christian?  Well, I am.  And this is one of those days I need to remind myself of that.

For the last couple of years my faith has been battling for what is right in the sight of God and most times I felt defeated.  As a result, I became depressed and short tempered.

My depression had taken the avenue of “why do I have to fight this battle alone when I believe in God?  He’s big.  So why can’t He take care of this matter?”  And on the flip side of things being short tempered is not new to me.  My mom was short tempered and it seems the behavior I hated as a child now visits me.

Oh!  My!  Goodness!  I have found myself in dark times and I need to protect my soul.  So Psalm 51:10 is needed for this day and everyday until I see the light of God in all situations:  Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me.  Amen

 

Inspirational Fridays: Irena Sendler Life in a Jar Story

Irena-SendlerToday, I wondered about an inspirational story for my post.  And as I was clearing my email account, yes, I found another noteworthy message, this time it was about Irena Sendler.  She was an incredible woman that save many Jewish children’s lives during WWII.

The Los Angeles Times wrote, “Fate may have led Irena Sendler to the moment almost 70 years ago when she began to risk her life for the children of strangers. But for this humble Polish Catholic social worker, who was barely 30 when one of history’s most nightmarish chapters unfolded before her, the pivotal influence was something her parents had drummed into her.”

“I was taught that if you see a person drowning,” she said, “you must jump into the water to save them, whether you can swim or not.”

When the Nazis occupying Poland began rounding up Jews in 1940 and sending them to the Warsaw ghetto, Sendler plunged in.

With daring and ingenuity, she saved the lives of more than 2,500 Jews, most of them children, a feat that went largely unrecognized until the last years of her life.

Sendler, 98, who died of pneumonia Monday in Warsaw, has been called the female Oskar Schindler, but she saved twice as many lives as the German industrialist, who sheltered 1,200 of his Jewish workers. Unlike Schindler, whose story received international attention in the 1993 movie “Schindler’s List,” Sendler and her heroic actions were almost lost to history until four Kansas schoolgirls wrote a play about her nine years ago.

The lesson Sendler taught them was that “one person can make a difference,” Megan Felt, one of the authors of the play, said Monday.

“Irena wasn’t even 5 feet tall, but she walked into the Warsaw ghetto daily and faced certain death if she was caught. Her strength and courage showed us we can stand up for what we believe in, as well,” said Felt, who is now 23 and helps raise funds for aging Holocaust rescuers.

Sendler was born Feb. 15, 1910, in Otwock, a small town southeast of Warsaw. She was an only child of parents who devoted much of their energies to helping workers.

She was especially influenced by her father, a doctor who defied anti-Semites by treating sick Jews during outbreaks of typhoid fever. He died of the disease when Sendler was 9.

She studied at Warsaw University and was a social worker in Warsaw when the German occupation of Poland began in 1939. In 1940, after the Nazis herded Jews into the ghetto and built a wall separating it from the rest of the city, disease, especially typhoid, ran rampant. Social workers were not allowed inside the ghetto, but Sendler, imagining “the horror of life behind the walls,” obtained fake identification and passed herself off as a nurse, allowed to bring in food, clothes and medicine.

By 1942, when the deadly intentions of the Nazis had become clear, Sendler joined a Polish underground organization, Zegota. She recruited 10 close friends — a group that would eventually grow to 25, all but one of them women — and began rescuing Jewish children.

She and her friends smuggled the children out in boxes, suitcases, sacks and coffins, sedating babies to quiet their cries. Some were spirited away through a network of basements and secret passages. Operations were timed to the second. One of Sendler’s children told of waiting by a gate in darkness as a German soldier patrolled nearby. When the soldier passed, the boy counted to 30, then made a mad dash to the middle of the street, where a manhole cover opened and he was taken down into the sewers and eventually to safety.

Decades later, Sendler was still haunted by the parents’ pleas, particularly of those who ultimately could not bear to be apart from their children.

“The one question every parent asked me was ‘Can you guarantee they will live?’ We had to admit honestly that we could not, as we did not even know if we would succeed in leaving the ghetto that day. The only guarantee,” she said, “was that the children would most likely die if they stayed.”

Most of the children who left with Sendler’s group were taken into Roman Catholic convents, orphanages and homes and given non-Jewish aliases. Sendler recorded their true names on thin rolls of paper in the hope that she could reunite them with their families later. She preserved the precious scraps in jars and buried them in a friend’s garden.

In 1943, she was captured by the Nazis and tortured but refused to tell her captors who her co-conspirators were or where the bottles were buried. She also resisted in other ways. According to Felt, when Sendler worked in the prison laundry, she and her co-workers made holes in the German soldiers’ underwear. When the officers discovered what they had done, they lined up all the women and shot every other one. It was just one of many close calls for Sendler.

During one particularly brutal torture session, her captors broke her feet and legs, and she passed out. When she awoke, a Gestapo officer told her he had accepted a bribe from her comrades in the resistance to help her escape. The officer added her name to a list of executed prisoners. Sendler went into hiding but continued her rescue efforts.

 

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

The Prayers of Black Women: A Kiss from Heaven

4213264-261659-vector-illustration-of-a-breast-cancer-pink-ribbon-treeYesterday a friend posted on Facebook she had to cut her long beautiful hair.  Apparently this has been a year that has tried her soul.  Medically she has opted for chemo and feels she is hanging onto life as she knows it.

Within her personal message she wrote she didn’t want us to feel sorry for her; but it is hard to be joyful when your friend is fighting to live.  It is even harder to be joyful when the illnesses of others make you question your own mortality.  So today I wrote a prayer for her and it is called “A Kiss from Heaven.”

A Kiss from Heaven

A kiss from Heaven is what I prayed for you.
I wanted you to know that God will see you through.
He knew you would lose your hair,
But a kiss from Heaven will show His care.

A kiss from Heaven is what I prayed for you.
I asked for God to kiss you at half-passed two.
God said He has already kissed you
And I know His kiss will heal you too.

A kiss from Heaven is what I ask for God to do,
So you will see His love shining through.
I asked that He give your skin a glow
So you will know He still runs the show.

A kiss from Heaven is what I prayed for you.
When I felt you might become a tad thin too.
I want God to let you know you are going to win,
Because He gives you courage from within.

A kiss from Heaven is what I prayed for you.
So when you feel down with sorrow
I want God to let you know He holds your tomorrows.
A kiss from Heaven is what I’m praying for you.

The Prayers of Black Women: I Just Want To Thank You Lord

Lord thank you for all you’ve done for me!  Yes!  You have kept me and your mercies have been new every morning.

Lord, this morning I’m praying for those that are lonely in spirit, for those that are losing hope, for those that have lost hope, for those that are hungry not only for natural food but spiritual food as well.  I’m praying for those that have been evicted, for those that have lost their homes to foreclosure or short-sale.  I’m praying for those that have lost their jobs or means of financial support.  I’m praying for those that have lost their transportation.  Lord, I’m praying for those that have been victimized by the greed of other’s.  I’m praying for young men and women that feel they are not loved.  I’m praying Lord that you will show the young [and old] your unconditional love.  I’m praying for those that are alcoholics this morning.  I’m praying for the families that have drugged addicted grand-parents, parents, children, and family members.  I’m praying for those that are hooked on drugs.  I’m praying for parents that have lost their children to death.  I’m praying for the grieving husbands and wives that have also lost their spouses to death.  I’m praying for those that are grieving the loss of someone.  I’m praying for those that have been newly divorced and feel void of emotions and can’t see their way clear.  Lord, I’m praying for the seen and unseen needs of those you deeply love.  Lord, I’m asking that you bring comfort to your people.

I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten– the great locust and the young locust, the other locusts and the locust swarm — my great army that I sent among you.  ~Joel 2.25

Your Loving Daughter,
Annette

 

Vocabulary Mondays – hope

Photo taken by:  A. A. Harrison
Photo taken by: A. A. Harrison

Word:  hope

Part of Speech:  noun

Meaning:  the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best

Word Usage:  To give up hope is to quit living.

In light of Lee Thompson Young’s death by suicide I have come to the conclusion people are loosing hope.  Hope gives the essence of our being a jump-start when everything seems bleak.  Hope lets us know we are not ready to check out of life.  Hope is the substance every soul craves during good and bad times.  Hope.  You can’t live without it!

So for those of you that are human, and sometimes find yourselves struggling with life’s trials and tribulations, I am sharing a few of my favorite Bible scriptures that gives me hope during the storms of life.

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. – Jeremiah 29:11

But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew [their] strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; [and] they shall walk, and not faint. – Isaiah 40:31

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things [are] honest, whatsoever things [are] just, whatsoever things [are] pure, whatsoever things [are] lovely, whatsoever things [are] of good report; if [there be] any virtue, and if [there be] any praise, think on these things. – Philippians 4:8

The Prayers of Black Women: Balancing Pain with Pleasure

Photo Taken From: https://twitter.com/AuthorESkoglund
Photo Taken From: https://twitter.com/AuthorESkoglund

A few years after my mother died, I remembered more vividly the times in childhood when she had made gloomy days seem cheerful.  When something special to do inside, such as new paper dolls or a coloring book.  Later, when I was in school, I always knew that on a rainy day I would come home to the smell of cookies baking in the oven . . .

I remembered, too, that in my childhood my mother had always balanced grief with comfort, pain with joy . . . To compensate for my childhood illnesses, for example, she used to read me stories which made the afternoon fly, or she would show me how to knit doll clothes out of the scraps of yarn which she had saved in a worn, brocade knitting bag . . .

Whatever the specific method used, my mother had learned, long before I knew her, how to balance pain with pleasure.

Elizabeth Skoglund

Today’s Prayer:

Lord somewhere in the world there are people in mental anguish over life’s trials and tribulations.  Often such pain is psychologically unbearable.  During these moments sometimes people don’t have the ability to hold their heads high with the assurance of knowing God’s powers to set things right.  Because of their inability to see your spiritual support most times every breath taken produce questions of their existence.  Lord to be honest it is during these times when emotional pain makes a person feel every so often they do not have much use for others.  And everything accomplished is tarnished with the shadow of sorrow; as it seems to their misfortune they were not given loved ones to uplift them during moments of afflictions.  Hum . . . Lord, it is within our moments of tribulations that we see the hand prints of God on our lives.  Therefore, I’m asking for your Holy presence among those who have yet to learn how to balance pain with pleasure.  Lord I’m asking that you teach them that sorrow only last for a moment.  Lord, I’m also praying they learn how to allow thoughts of joy to diminish their temporary gloomy day(s).  So, again, Lord, I’m asking that you turn on your spiritual lights for these people that they might see how to truly balance pain with pleasure; and in turn they will enjoy living once again.  Amen.

Your Loving Daughter,

Annette