This is MawBea, she just happens to be the most amazing thing to happen to me since January. I’m somewhat a caregiver, I sit with her a couple of days a week and help her with things she needs help with. We talk a lot and spend a lot of time telling and listening to each others’ stories. So, a couple of Thursdays ago, for the first time in a while, MawBea asked me why I wasn’t “going steady” with anyone. Initially I had what I’d say all figured out, being I get asked it so often. This time was different though. I asked her why she asked me that and she said, “What’s wrong with these men? Why can’t they grow up and have enough faith in love and the Creator of it to jump in!?” My mouth hit the floor. I don’t think she was saying it to say that I was so special, I legitimately think she wondered why no one had committed to me. As we continued talking she started telling me stories about how she and her husband met, this was in the 1950s by the way. She went into detail about how much she didn’t pay him any mind at first. Later in the story she said how he decided that he wouldn’t give up so easily and so the pursuit commenced. She told me the biggest leap of faith she had to do was to trust that her husband would love her unconditionally & that until that moment she didn’t think her life really started. By this time, I’d completely stopped talking because her story captivated my 22 year old peanut brain and this is what she proceeded to say,
“Shakiyla, did I say it right? SHAHKEEEELUHHH? I love that name. Shakiyla, why are you so scared to love?”
I didn’t say anything, I literally sat there and stared at her as if she’d spoken in another language. So, being the delicate little flower she is, she threw her ink pen at me and said,
“I know you heard me! What makes you so scared to love? and don’t say you’re not because I see it on that lil face. You love tough girl, sometimes too tough, but it’s as sweet as friendship bread, why not give that love to an amazing man of God that you know will protect it?”
To my surprise, I didn’t start crying, I simply replied “Fear.” & she reminded me that there is no fear in love.
Yep. That’s what happened. 20 mins into me going to work, this conversation filled the room. I’ll never forget that day y’all. Out of no where she unknowingly told me what had been the heaviest thing on MY heart and used the sweetest most simple scripture to remind me of how INVALID that was. Now, my life has definitely already started, I have goals and desires, and this is not the 1950s but those truths stand just as firm as my fear sometimes. Sometimes.
If she knew I was writing this blog about her she’d absolutely slaughter me! So y’all better not SAY A WORD. She’s more of an answered prayer than she’ll ever know and It’s the little things like this that remind me of her virtue. She’s so special and I just think I need to start sharing things like this with y’all. Disagree? Go have ice cream and take a nap, you’re crazy.
MAW BEA MOMENT OF THE DAY:
She was walking up the garden in the picture above and the shovel was lodged in between the wall and her walker, so I go, “Maw Bea watch that shovel” and she replies, “I see it baby, thank you. Now, what am I watchin for? Is it gonna dance or somethin?” I told her to LEAVE ME ALONE, and she blew me a kiss. She’s my best friend.
The title of this blog came from a man I can definitely consider a friend, leader, and brother in Christ. He said it with so much heart that I couldn’t help but carry it away with me in my spirit.
I was watching a video last night, that’s January 27th, 2014, on the floor in my living. It was an interview between a 19 year old Black male (James Broadned) and an unnamed interviewer. The boy was awaiting trial for two counts of murder and pleaded innocent on both charges. That wasn’t all James had to say though. Throughout the interview, the interviewers asked him an array of questions related to the murder, the people murdered, the deceased’s families, his family, and his emotions toward the situation as a whole. Without completely giving you the dialogue of the interview, I will attempt to show you why I feel it is necessary for us, as a people, to step out into this world as an example eager for change.
When asked what he came there to do during the interview, he simply replied, “I wanna tell yall my story..”
Throughout the interview the reporter had him re-tell the story of the murder, he was more than willing. In one instance the reporter felt it necessary to remind him that he’d killed 2 young men, Broadned laughed, the reported asked him if he had any remorse, he responded with, “do it look like it?” There was one major occurrence in this video that really took my heart and shook it to the core. That’s probably why I decided to write all of this in a blog.
Toward the end of the interview he started cursing the boys he killed, their families, God, and the Devil. The interviewer responded with, “some people may say you are the Devil..” and Broadned responded with, “maybe, look me in my eyes and tell me what you see.” Now, I was more than frustrated with the fact that the interviewer would even fix her mouth to choose those words as a necessary response, but that wasn’t what turned my stomach. That boy really asked her to look into his eyes in search of an evil that I can’t even understand sometimes.
Here’s the beauty of our God. He gave us His Son, who willingly laid His life down as a payment for the sins we committed, right? That’s our Gospel. In that laying down of His life, He became our identity if we would choose to accept Him and pursue such characteristics. So in that interview, when James would have said look me in my eyes, there would have been the confidence of Christ. But he didn’t. He absolutely didn’t. It is so clear to me and the thousands of people commenting on the video that the boy needs help but I’m not sure how many people realize that he is ONE in a MILLION. We can sit up all night and watch videos like this, go to boys’ homes, visit women’s shelters, boycott strip clubs on Bourbon, and give pity faces to the kids that are engulfed in these sorts of situations, but what we need to do is move our feet. As children of God we are called to go into this world that we should know is dark and be His light. A light is POINTLESS in a place that already shines; this is why it’s so necessary for us to MOVE.
11 “For thus says the Lord God: Behold, I, I myself will search for my sheep and will seek them out. 12 As a shepherd seeks out his flock when he is among his sheep that have been scattered, so will I seek out my sheep, and I will rescue them from all places where they have been scattered on a day of clouds and thick darkness. 13 And I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them into their own land. And I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, by the ravines, and in all the inhabited places of the country. 14 I will feed them with good pasture, and on the mountain heights of Israel shall be their grazing land. There they shall lie down in good grazing land, and on rich pasture they shall feed on the mountains of Israel. 15 I myself will be the shepherd of my sheep, and I myself will make them lie down, declares the Lord God. 16 I will seek the lost, and I will bring back the strayed, and I will bind up the injured, and I will strengthen the weak, and the fat and the strong I will destroy.[a] I will feed them in justice.
This is our God. He’s the example for believers. A couple of months ago I asked an acquaintance of mine if he could make a point to reach out to a young boy I met a long time ago. The boy has been following in the wrong footsteps and really tampering with a lifestyle I’ve seen and experienced lead to death and lots of heartache. It scared me, so I did what I thought necessary, and called on help. The person I asked apologized for their lack in the past, expressed how busy they’d been, and said they’d try to do better. I didn’t expect an apology, I just wanted help. As far as I know, the boy still hasn’t seen him. They haven’t had contact, and that hurts me more than I realized, especally after watching that video. There is absolutely no bitterness, just a lack of understanding. I get that we have our own lives, and I understand that sometimes we get busy, hell I understand that some people reading this may be thinking ‘THAT BOY IS NOT OUR RESPONSIBILITY’…but it’s not responsibility that should drive ANY of our work for the Kingdom, it’s love. I’m learning that more and more everyday. No matter how busy or pre-occupied with life we get, we need to sit down and remember that
“If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. 3 For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.”
this reminds us that our lives are HIDDEN in Christ. Synonyms for hidden include, UNSEEN, KEPT OUT OF SIGHT, & CONCEALED. This means that our lives are absolutely, positively, NO LONGER our lives. Our lives are lives granted us to go out into this world that has been DEEMED defeated and show the beautiful light we thank Him for every time we open our sinful mouths to sing
“Then sings my soul, my Savior God to thee, how great Thou art, how great Thou art”
Oh my goodness you guys. We have to share His love. I’m not saying we can save every boy from the death penalty, every girl from street corners, every kid from drugs, every anybody from anything really, I’m simply saying we need to stop saying “I’ll try to do better” and just DO. These kids can’t be what they don’t see, and man we can show them something really special, I just know we can.
I’m totally open to hear feedback, criticism, encouragement, suggestions. Anything really, I’m open to anything.
I’m gonna go pray now. My goodness I hope you do too.
So I not too long ago got off. I was sittin in bed texting Josh and Gabrielle, then BOOM, I dozed off. I had a dream I was in a restaurant with a man, whose face I couldn’t see and he said,
“I want you to reassure me that you’ll never expect me to love you as much as God does, trust that i’ll try my best to do it the way He does & promise me that you will always run to Him FIRST…”
Then I cried.
I put my head down on the lil table and proceeded to just weep.
“truth and beauty
are one and the same,
life is the lust
of the lamp for the light,
and the ghosts don’t know
whether they’re dead
I’m a thinker. I find myself sitting in the room, in my car, or at the foot of the Cross creating scenarios in my head. I don’t find it strange, sometimes it’s simply an interference during my day. So, I’m sitting on the couch in the living room right now right? I find myself thinking about what I would say to Charles, my father, if I had the chance. Now, my introduction wasn’t much of an introduction so I guess y’all don’t know much about our relationship. Well, to make a long story short, there was none. He left when I was 5, called on my 10th and 12th birthdays, called the week before he died, and died when I was 14. Now, you may think it cold of me to be all cavalier-like when discussing the death of the man that took part in creating me, but like I said before, we had little to no communication.
So, back to my initial thought. I’m just thinking, if I was ever given the opportunity to say one thing to him, what would I say? Well, I’m 21years old. I’ve never had to love a man and I’m struggling to learn how. My God is my Father and I sometimes struggle with learning how to love Him as well. All this to say, the whole “daddy” thing is not really my FORTE. Well, the more I thought, the more I ran through my head, the more I struggled with what I would even say.
I think I’ve concluded that I’d thank him.
I’d thank him for his deciding to build a relationship with my younger sister instead of me. That pretty much has shown me that NO man can ever be trusted to ALWAYS choose me first, other than my God. No matter my situation, age, innocence, nothing. God is the only one I am absolutely sure has chosen and always will choose me.
I’d also thank him for leaving my moms to raise me on her own. She is now the spitting image of what it takes to become a God-fearing woman WITHOUT the leadership of an EARTHLY man. She had to learn on her own what it meant to devote herself to God. She had to understand that she is not the father in our family but is given the honor to let God take the leading role when raising up my brothers and myself. She was put in a situation where when provision was questionable, her faith had to be solid in the fact that our God was the provider. She had to see him as the head of the household and teach us to look to Him for guidance and understanding.
I think I may also thank him for calling me when he was sick. Not sarcastically, or out of spite, I’d whole heartedly thank that man. In those few minutes, laying at his bedside, watching him waste away, he showed me that no matter how wrong someone has ever done me, no matter how hard my heart will ever grow, no matter how abandoned, betrayed, deceived, or rejected one person has ever made me feel, that I am called to love them like my Father has loved me. I vividly remember that night. I see his face in my mind more than I’d like. I remember. Those memories simply remind me of how bad it can get, but it’ll never compare to the way I deny God with my sin and he continues to sit and my bedside, as I’m wasting away, losing myself, trying to tie loose ends, he still sits at my bedside and pours out His love to me in the most pure and satisfying way.
I’m not sure why Charles did the things he did. I’m not sure why he left. I’m not sure why he called. There are many questions I’ve wanted to ask him but now, while I sit on this couch, listening to John Legend, I’ve decided that all I’d want to do is thank him.
My God is more Father than he could have ever been and having to tell myself that when I struggle in any relationship is just another form of growth…i guess…
Matthew 23:9 says
“And call no man your father on earth, for you have one Father, who is in heaven.”
that verse brings me a ton of peace. I’m not sure when I’ll do a “biographyish” blog. I’m not really sure if i even want to. I just know I’m really thankful for my daddy and the way He loves me.
You would think that this would make me stop wearing heels eh? nahhh. They’re my pride and joy you guys.
This is not some misaligned attempt to frighten women into starting big bon fires all over the world with their heels. Heck, if that was the case, by writhing this piece I would be cutting my nose off to spite my face, because I’m one man who loves ladies in heels.
But I have to keep it real if my blog pieces are to have an iota of credibility.I have to write about joy and the pain, the sunshine and the rain if I’m privy to the information.
While women love their shoes, and God knows we love you in them,several studies around prolonged high heel wearing can possibly have unintended health consequences. Now keep in mind these consequences are mostly from an over indulgence in wearing them. So don’t swear off high heels altogether and convert to strictly “saved Grandma Church shoes” or sneakers. But do check out the…
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