Posts

Showing posts from 2012

I have learned

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Let's just be honest. This year has been tough. We lost family members to sickness and tragic accidents. We moved from one home to another. We held our beloved dog while she took her last breath. Friendships have been altered and lost. In the midst of it all though, God has never left my side. He has been there when I questioned and when I cried, when I ranted and when I felt like giving up. I am real with Him and He is real with me. When I get off track, He knows what I need - whether it be loving guidance or a loving push! Like my very closest friend, He wants only the best for me. And so, in the dark times, I have found light in unexpected places.


I have learned lessons in love and forgiveness and acceptance. I have learned what is truly important and what is inconsequential. I have learned to be thankful every single day of my life, for my life, exactly as it is. I have learned to search for the blessing in the midst of the difficult. I have learned that His love for me never …

emerging

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It has been just a little over two years since I first put a pen to paper and wrote out my deepest thoughts; my struggles to find who I really was underneath the plaster cast that I had applied to hide my true self. It has been eye-opening and painful and heart-wrenching and difficult. It has been liberating and beautiful and sweet and peace-filled. I have always described this process as like that of the butterfly's metamorphosis. I spent so many years as the caterpillar, content to crawl through my life doing just what was necessary to get by. But I knew that there had to be more. That I was created for more. That someone completely different, but still completely me, was on the inside, waiting to grow wings and fly. I spent these last two years in my chrysalis - changing, developing, growing, maturing. I spent time processing who I was, who I thought I should be, and who I was really created to be. I had to shave away layers of condemnation and guilt and unforgiveness and hurt…

a few of my favorite things

~snuggling
~salted caramel scented candles
~pictures of my family
~sleep
~action movies
~my hubby
~his cooking
~reading trashy novels
~sweatpants
~white chocolate mochas from Starbucks
~Long Island ice tea
~a clean house
~my children
~music
~fuzzy socks
~sweet mint tea
~the smell of fresh dirt
~laughing
~reality tv
~worshipping my Jesus
~Bath & Body's Coconut Lime Breeze products
~fuzzy navels (of the drinking variety!)
~my sock monkey
~Christmas
~do nothing days
~the sun
~my friends
~cake (mainly the icing!)
~writing
~walks in the woods

who are we?

through the window of life
we watch
and wait
for the day to come.
the day that we will be
acknowledged,
recognized,
accepted,
loved.
do you know
     that we wait?
do you know
     that we cry?
do you know
     that we never give up?
do you know
     who we are?





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Who is standing outside of your life, watching, waiting, longing to belong, to have what you offer, to be a part of you, to be accepted for who they are? Is it the homeless man on the corner? the busy cashier where you shop weekly? the teen battling a mental illness? the tired single mom struggling to keep her family together? the strung out drug abuser? the elderly neighbor who stays shut up in her home, lonely and depressed? Reach out! Don't worry about what you can't do - just concentrate on what you can do for them. Acceptance and love are what every person desires and what they deserve. Start there!

in with the new

the pain is as fresh
as if it happened yesterday.
the hurts run deep
and wide.
wounds are tender to the touch,
ugly to the eye.
rejection.
suffering.
.
.
healing begins,
slowly
diligently
thoroughly.
memories decreasing,
betrayal lessening.
the trauma no longer
haunts the mind daily.
.
.
time marches on.
the scars are visible
but fading,
permanent
but not defining.
the day is coming
when the old will be no more
and the new will reign complete.


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Words can wound as much as physical blows. May I always be sensitive to what rolls off my tongue - may it be healing, not hurting; uplifting, not degrading; positive, not negative; and may it bring life, not death!




no. more. masks.

When I embarked on this journey to uncover the real me, I had no idea what I would encounter. Yes, I realize that sounds strange. Why wouldn't I know who I really was? Looking back, I have spent so many years trying to be the Sherri that others wanted me to be. I was a people pleaser. I learned early on how to read people and transform myself into what they deemed necessary. Like putting on a mask, I could evolve into what they were looking for. Just as easily, I could change my persona as I changed my environments around me. In school, I was the goal achieving student. With friends, I was the party girl. At work, I was the conscientious employee. In church, I was the obedient Christian. All of them were me and yet none of them were fully true to me. It was as if each mask had only one part of me attached to it, while the others hung in the closet awaiting their turn to be presented to the people I chose.
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Now, I have to discover which parts of those different lives had elements…

do nothing and feel good doing it.

Midway through my Saturday, it suddenly hit me. Like a ton of bricks. I was tired. Not the 'I need a nap' kind of tired, but the 'I am physically and emotionally exhausted' kind of tired. Right then I decided that I needed a day off. Not wanted - needed. Even though I had prior commitments, I wiped the next days calendar clean and wrote nothing across it. It felt good just to take that one little step. It felt even better at the end of that nothing day. It was the most restful, peaceful day that I've had in a really long time. I slept in; hubby served us breakfast in bed; we lounged in our pj's and talked and just enjoyed some family time. Most importantly, I took time for just me. Because of that one day, everything this week has seemed to go more smoothly. It gave me the boost that I desperately needed. Nothing in my life is any different than it was last week, but everything just seems better. So, I've penciled in another nothing day into my calendar. Ju…

what about love?...part 2

"Go after a life of love as if your life depended on it..."     1 Corinthians 14:1           

I feel like I'm at a point in my life where I have to live a life of love. There is nothing else that means more to me right now. Nothing. Love covers it all. Everything I see, everything I do, it all brings me back to one word - love. Am I perfect in this? No. But He is perfecting it in me. I cannot love on my own. Sure, in the worldly sense I could. But the world's idea of love is fleeting; is based on feelings and emotions and thoughts. I'm after a love that is eternal...unconditional. Papa gives that to me and I allow the overflow of that to pour out through me to those around me. Love is not judgmental or condemning or limited. Love is unchanging...passionate...everlasting...without conditions. It is selfless...fearless...perfect...simply beautiful.

"This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one nee…

I am...

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For far too many years, I have believed that it's easier to keep quiet and keep the peace. I don't like to offend or upset others. I have bitten my tongue on so many subjects that I could probably insert a few tongue rings! I desire for people to like me, even if that means not being true to myself. Well, I don't know if it's the lack of sleep this week, or the overabundance of Starbucks coursing through my veins, but I'm going to let it all loose. So, while I may change my opinions or views in the future, this is what I'm feeling right now.


I love my God immensely and try my best to live this life out with Him by my side, doing as He would want me to. Do I always get this right? No, but He loves me the same. I try to take this unconditional love that He freely immerses me in and give it out to all I meet. This is a different feel for me. It's hard to let go of prior judgements and beliefs, but I'm making strides daily. I look and act and talk and belie…

are you my friend?

What is a friend? How do you pick one? Is it based solely on common interests? shared goals? mutual beliefs? familiarity? What draws two people into a friendship and keeps them bonded to one another? Can friendships evolve and change as the participants also evolve? According to Wikipedia the following is one of the definitions of friendship : "The ability to be oneself, express one's feelings and make mistakes without fear of judgement." Call me idealistic, but this is my favorite description of friendships, and how I believe they should work. I don't care if you're my very best friend or an acquaintance, I want you to be free to be the true you while in my presence. Why? Because I also want to be free to be the real me when I'm with you. You be you, I'll be me, and we won't judge each other, ever. This has been an evolution of sorts for me, my metamorphosis from the old me, the fake me, the people pleaser, to the new me, the free me, the true me.

So…

lost

Lost.
The path, once clearly defined, seems overgrown...shadowed.
Did I miss a sign?
  Take a wrong turn?
Have I been led astray?
  Or did my own wanderings bring me to this destination?
I'm not sure anymore.
I call out.
  It goes unanswered.
I extend a hand.
  It goes untouched.
I am alone.
Where are the others?
  The ones who promised I would not travel alone.
Have they left me here,
  oblivious to the one left behind?
Do they not see my distress?
Do they not know of my plight?
Are they so consumed with their own journey that they have forgotten all else, all others?
In their passion to be forerunners, they have lost sight of the real reason for the race.
Do they not care that
I.
Am.
Lost.

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Lord, may I never be so caught up in my own life, my own walk, that I ignore the cries of those around me. What will it matter when I finish this race, if I've left hurting, helpless, lost children of Yours in my wake…

freefalling

I rarely feel the need to explain my writing, but this time I will. Or at least, I will try. I'm still not totally sure of the meaning behind this (and am open for anyone's thoughts). I awoke at 3:30 am after a disturbing dream that I no longer recall, and wrote this poem. May God open my eyes to the silently hurting around me. May I not be indifferent to their suffering. May I reach out with His healing love.
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Alone.
  In a room
    full of people
      she is alone.

Darkness.
  In the light
    bright and telling
      he swirls in darkness.

Thoughts are jumbled.
                                    Emotions forever muted.
                                                                            Feelings stripped raw.
Standing
  on the edge
    of forever.
                    One step
                      from the freefall
                        of oblivion.

Lucidness fleeting.
                    …

goodbye's are hard

What can I say that will really convey what my heart feels?

I love you guys. I am torn between sheer joy for the new beginning this brings for you and utter despair at knowing that you won't be a few miles away. You are exactly what the word 'family' means, not by blood but bonded through love. There wasn't a time when I needed someone that you weren't there for me. You know how hard it is for me to even admit that I might need help and you were there every time. You were the first to visit me in the hospital, and brought a meal afterwards...offered the use of a car when ours was out of commission...helped me indulge in some much needed retail therapy...encouraged me in my first 5k and my ongoing pursuit of a healthier lifestyle...left me vent my frustrations...showed me the love of Papa in action...were real with me...were instrumental in this metamorphosis that I am in the midst of...always loved me for me.

I cannot express in words just how much your friendship…

what about love?

1 Corinthians 13 1 If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don't love, I'm nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate.2 If I speak God's Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, "Jump," and it jumps, but I don't love, I'm nothing.3-7 If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don't love, I've gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I'm bankrupt without love.

Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn't want what it doesn't have. Love doesn't strut, Doesn't have a swelled head, Doesn't force itself on others, Isn't always "me first," Doesn't fly off the handle, Doesn't keep score of the sins of others, Doesn't revel when others grovel, Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth, Puts up wit…

ch-ch-changes

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I feel lost. confused. sad. Life has always been a roller coaster for me but lately, it's like living on one that is constantly set on the highest speed. I understand that I'm in this period of transition. Everything is changing. My house. My friends. My church. My family. My thoughts. My actions. My life. I'm not one to deal with change well. I feel like I'm questioning a lot, second guessing myself. and Papa. But He's okay with that. We have long talks where I do most of the talking, and questioning, and pouting, and fighting. He patiently waits me out. He lovingly points out how much I grow in these trying times; how I change within my metamorphosis; how much more of the real me is shining through; how much more of Him is shining through. He's right. And I'll get through this. It's time to turn and face the strange / ch-ch-changes / just gonna have to be a different (wo)man.

* David Bowie's song Changes!

if you're listening to this...

This is a poem read by Pastor Jerry Adams for my cousin Shawn at his homegoing celebration. He was only 41 when cancer cut short his time here with us. Even when I struggle with understanding why he had to leave us so soon, Shawn was completely at peace with His will. He left an amazing testimony to all that were touched by his life.
You are loved and missed. Shawn Richards 7/11/70-5/17/12

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If you're listening to this, then some things went wrong, went astray, something was amiss but let's not make a list
Faced with the reality of my own mortality, I tried to abide within, and call upon my spirituality
But sometimes the two never meet, thus highlighting the situation's duality
With the strength of  my faith masking my frailty
There are things that must be and yet those things I just could not see
In other words, when I was calling on God, He was calling for me
I was praying save me, and He was saying …

homeless. hungry. needy. please help.

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No matter where you live, I'm sure that you've seen them. In my area, they seem to gather where the most traffic is - logical, of course. Some come and go - true travellers just passing through. Others are regulars. I see them around all through the year. My family and I discuss them at length - what do we think that their story is, are they truly in need or is this how they earn a living, is it bad luck or their own doing, will they use the money for drugs or alcohol, why don't they take advantage of our town's homeless shelters? On and on, we wonder about them and the unfortunate events that have led them to beg by the side of the road for money. My hubby recently heard a discussion on a local radio station discussing this matter. The woman felt awkward because she was sitting in her car directly in eye view of a guy and didn't want to give him any money. Why? He had tattoos. She reasoned that if he could afford a tattoo, he didn't need her handout. I respect…

not just another day

Twenty-seven years ago, something amazing was happening that I wasn't even aware of. My life revolved around typical teen things - my after school job, the boy I liked, my friends, school. I had no idea that something that would affect my life later on was taking place on that very day. A new life was being brought into the world. One that would change mine forever. It would take me almost 6 more years to realize the wonder of that day. On May 11, 1985 my stepson was being born.

I've never asked his mom about her decision to keep him, as opposed to the other options that were available to her. I'm just forever grateful to her for choosing to have him. I can't imagine my life without him. When I met my hubby, one of the first things that he told me was that he had a son from a previous relationship. That didn't deter me. One week later I met him and fell in love. He was the sweetest, most mannerly little boy that I had ever met. If you know our story, you know that …

my fall from superwoman status

Yes, it finally happened. I'm no longer considered to be a superwoman. They revoked my card-carrying privileges to the club. No more fringe benefits like worked-to-the-bone-fingers, sleep-deprived-bloodshot-eyes, aching-running-here-and-there-bones, frazzled-hasn't-seen-a-comb-in-days-hair, and isn't-that-what-you-were-wearing-yesterday-clothes. I think that I should be more concerned, but frankly, I'm too worn out to raise much of a fuss. I'm surprised that I managed to last as long as I
did. Who knew that superwomen weren't superheroes, just merely overworked and underpaid workaholics??

Oh, in the beginning, it seemed so easy. As a new wife and stepmom, I was determined to be the best. Hubby went out to make the bacon; I stayed home to cook it. He worked hard, so it only seemed fair of me to do everything else. Cleaning. Dishes. Have a baby. Bills. Groceries. Have another baby. Laundry. Shopping. Have two babies. Driving them to appointments, music lesson…

i. don't. care.

I
don't
care

That phrase seems to be just that - uncaring. unfriendly. maybe even mean. But it's the truth of where I am at right now. I just don't care what others think of me. It's not a bad thing. It's a good thing. I've spent way too many years, wasted way too many thoughts, on worrying what others are thinking about me - should I say that? should I do that? what will others think? say? It led me to second guess a lot of my life. Well, my 'Christian' life. Before, I did what I wanted, when I wanted, how I wanted, and never gave a second thought to how I would be perceived. People could like me or not, but it wasn't going to change me. Though that attitude was rooted in my rebellion, it was how I operated during that time.

Then, Papa came into my life, turned me around, and changed that rebellion into submission to Him. My heart was softened. My thoughts were more outward focused. I cared about the image that I was projecting. Unfortunately, …

tripping over that first step

Six years ago, we bought our first rental property. It was an awesome opportunity, but a lot of hard work. One had long term tenants, but the other was unoccupied and in need of work. A lot of work. We finally decided to tear out everything to the studs and start over - plumbing, electrical, walls, windows, the works (this is actually how Mid J decided that she wanted to be an electrician). Though we were brand new to this whole process, we had just one goal in mind - make it nice enough that we would be willing to live in it. No short cuts. No quick fixes. No becoming those dreaded "slumlords". Over the years, we've learned a lot about owning property. One being that we are too nice. Another is that Mid J has an amazing gift of discernment concerning people - she is better than any background or credit check! Except for the couple that we rented to against her advice (we won't make that same mistake twice!), we have been blessed with incredible tenants. I cried when…

gentle giant

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Ten years ago, we read every book that we could find about you. We looked up all the online sites about your breed. An English Mastiff. The Gentle Giant. And you were. On January 31, 2003, at four months old, you entered our home, our family, our lives, our hearts. You came to us at a time when we needed you most. We had just experienced three traumatic events in four short months involving all of our children - two separate car accidents, and one freak accident at home. You seemed to sense that Little J had had the most trouble. You were like a mother to her - curling your protectiveness around her the most. But it didn't stop with her. You loved us all. We proclaimed you as our family dog, but we all knew that your most special love was reserved for hubby. You were his girl too. At your biggest you weighed an impressive 185 pounds, but that didn't stop you from barreling through the yard at full speed to greet him. The twins were only three when you joined us, and many a ti…

cleaning out my closet

You may wonder what that is behind me. Let me introduce you. It's my closet. I take it with me wherever I go. Like Superman, I walk in, then reappear in costume. I have a lot. Too many. So tonight, I'm cleaning out my closet.
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There's some old ones shoved way in the back. They haven't been worn in years, but occasionally make their way to the front. They taunt me. I did my best to do them proud. I failed.
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There are worn ones. I wear them often. They don't fit me, but they do fit other's ideas of me. Grudgingly, I put them on and become what they want me to be. Each time, I lose a little piece of me. I hate them.
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There are fancy ones. The good ones. Reserved for times where I need to impress others with who I am, or who I think that I want to be. I keep these separate. In my mind that somehow makes them better. They're not.
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There are tight ones. Constricting. There is no flexibility, no room for growth, and change, and newness, and creativity. In the…

best job ever

Growing up, there were various career ideas that I tossed around, but I knew that the one thing that I wanted more than anything was to be a mom. My grades and test scores placed me in advanced courses, but I was frustrating to my guidance counselors. Why wouldn't I choose college? My answer was always the same. I'm going to be a wife and mom. Period. End of discussion. For that day. Time and time again, they would pull me into that suffocating office and try to make me see life their way. They were unsuccessful. It was even hard for me to comprehend at times. I didn't have any friends who thought this way either. It was just something deep inside that I couldn't shake off. I just knew that some day I would be a mom and to me that was the best job. And what a mom I would be!! No rules, no work, no discipline! I would give them all that they desired! I would be the best mom EVER! Haha. Obviously, those thoughts were formed in the midst of my teenage years. Fast forward…

lessons from the round table

A few weeks ago, our spiritual father, Mark, encouraged us as a family to eat our dinners at our diningroom table. In our house, it's used for a lot of things, but usually only for eating when we have guests! Amid much grumbling (yes, I was the loudest!), we embarked on a whole new journey. Hubby and Little D were the only two agreeable to this arrangement, as the girls and I were quite happy to eat in the livingroom, eyes glued to whatever show we had DVRed from the previous night. Although hard at first, we are adjusting. Besides, give us Brownings a challenge and we WILL do it, even if we kick and scream along the way!! But I've learned some things around our now frequently used table....
-- My family is even more awesome than I imagined! We've always gotten along very well and had great family times, but dinner is definitely becoming my favorite part of the day. In our busy life, it's nice to feel like we can still connect with each other daily.
-- I am getting to …

lessons from the round table...part 2

Last fall, Middle J took a class 'Personal Development'. On the first day, they were given the requirement to sign all of their papers, assignments, etc. with this - the one and only (insert their name here). They discussed how important it is to realize that each one of us is unique in our creative purpose, our design, our giftings, and to plug into God in order to walk that out in our daily lives. (Please forgive me Mike and Mark for over simplifying your teachings!) I have always said to my kids, "You are my favorite D...or J..." depending on who I was talking to at the time. It was my way of making them feel special without playing an actual favorite. But I loved this new approach - the one and only - and so I started using that in my speech to them. Soon after we started having all of our dinners together at the table, God gave me another idea for dinnertime based on this. I made a notebook for each child that says on the first page "the one and only (their…

get real

"The perception of who you are is more important than who you are. You are what other people think of you." This is a quote from a book that I am currently reading. I would like to say that this is false, that who I am is more important than what others think about me. I would like to say that I don't believe this, but that wouldn't be the truth. Sometimes, I do think like this. Sometimes, I feel that I'm no more than what they say I am. Sometimes, I can't find the real me for all the fake me getting in the way. I want to get real. I've spent a lifetime creating who I think Sherri is based on what those around me want Sherri to be. I amtired of being fake. I want to get real. When you ask me how I am, I want to say that I'm doing lousy, that my kids are driving me crazy, that Rob and I are fighting, that I have huge insecurities. I want to get real. When you ask me how I am, I want to say that I'm doing fabulous, that I think my kids are the best…

one day

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My life was in upheaval. Everything was changing. I was changing. One month earlier, I left the job that I had been at for two years. I felt miserable there. I decided that no place should make me feel that way. Three weeks earlier, I left the boyfriend that I had been with for four years. I felt miserable there. I decided that no person should make me feel that way. I was lost, unsure of my future, but knowing that there had to be a better way. I was searching without knowing what I was looking for. But Papa knew.

Although I had blocked God out of my life years earlier, He was still there - loving me unconditionally, waiting patiently. I refused to acknowledge Him. He refused to turn away from me. He didn't leave me because of my rebellion...my blatant disregard for Him. He reached out to me right where I was. He loved me fiercely. In that dark time of my life, I asked for just one thing. And He couldn't wait to honor my request!

Twenty-one years ago today, He walked the answ…

in honor of my grandparents...part 2

This will be a series of posts in which I honor my grandparents, both my blood ones and my love ones. All of my grandparents are now with Jesus. This is my way of remembering, honoring, and loving them. This second one is dedicated to my pappy and mamaw C.

We relocated to this area when I was four years old. We moved into a large, older farmhouse that was really two houses in one. They lived on one side and we were on the other, separated by one unlocked door that required only a simple knock and maybe a shout-out in order to step across into the other's home. We lived there until I was sixteen. Those twelve years are full of so many beautiful memories. I grew up there, and though they were not blood related, they did their part as grandparents, helping me on my path to maturity.

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I remember
.....butchering day. We never ventured outside until we knew the killing part was finished. But the rest of…

what KONY2012 showed me

This week my facebook wall has been inundated with one subject - KONY2012. Every day friends are reposting the video, pledging monetary support, and/or purchasing awareness products. By now, I am sure that every person on facebook is aware of the plight of these poor children. As we should be.

My concern is about the charity behind this movement - Invisible Children. Only 37.14% of their total expenses is actually spent in Africa itself. The rest is spent on fundraising(3.22), media/film(7.87), awareness products/programs(35.54), and management(16.24). If I'm going to give a charitable donation to an organization, I would prefer to see a higher percentage of those dollars actually going to their cause. If they are truly invested in putting the children first, they should find a way to pare down some of these other costs. Maybe they already have. Facebook and Youtube are doing an excellent job of promoting awareness. For free.

My heart breaks for these children and the atrocities …

underneath the plaster

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At the beginning of this year(2010), Eugene Strite preached a message about the Golden Budda encased in plaster (google it if you don't know the story). This post details my struggle to rid myself of my own plaster encasing in order to be the me that God has always intended me to be. With His help, I am getting there! A lot of people have supported me along the way and I am so grateful for that.  



Year after year. Layer upon layer. It continues to build up. More, more, more. Outsiders contribute some, with their demands, expectations, thoughtless words, rejection. More, more, more. I can't help but add to it myself, in a hopeless attempt to preserve the vulnerable core. More, more, more. The plaster shell is rock hard. It has to be. How else will I protect myself? Inside, I hide, unsure if the real me even wants to venture out. What is waiting for me? The unknown can be frightening, intimidating. If I stay here, I have a chance at protection, at anonymity. But, locked inside,…

another eye-opener

My personality has always seemed to be a contrast of different aspects. One part of me is friendly, talkative, outgoing while the other is quiet, introverted, even standoffish. I don't try to be, I'm just uncomfortable in new situations or with those that I don't know. I've always been like this. I never questioned it. I just learned to live with it. or so I thought...

This past weekend, we attended an out of town wedding where we only knew the bride and her immediate family. I knew that this would be a difficult situation for me. I would be totally out of my comfort zone. I would be surrounded by people that I didn't know and who didn't know me. I was scared and nervous. One of my biggest challenges is my constant worry of what others think of me. God is really working on this negative aspect in my life because it is both keeping me from being who I was always meant to be and, quite honestly, it's very draining - emotionally, spiritually, physically. I had…

imma be sherri

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I love music. I love taking any kind of music and letting God talk to me through it. The Black Eyed Peas sing a song "Imma Be" and I'm using it as my declaration of what I'm going to be!
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Imma be real. Imma be honest. Imma be me.
I'm going to stop trying to be superwoman by setting goals that are next to impossible to achieve. I'm going to realize what I was meant to be and do, and head my life in that direction. I'm going to focus on what is truly important.
Imma be real. Imma be honest. Imma be me.
I'm going to ignore the side trails of life that lead me nowhere, filling my time with trivial stuff. I'm going to let go of all the extra baggage that is just weighing me down. If it's of no use to me, why am I dragging it along?
Imma be real. Imma be honest. Imma be me.
I'm going to stop caring about what others are doing, and concentrate on what I should be doing. God did NOT create me to be a carbon copy of anyone else! I am me and that i…

let's PARTY!!!!!

"Heaven is a party 24/7. Just join in to Heaven's party!"

What?? She did not just say that to me! The "religious" part of me had my shackles up! Party and God are two words that just do not seem to go together. I quickly pushed that to the back of my mind and concentrated on the rest of her words. She seemed normal. Everything else that she said was normal. As I am growing up in my Father, I have come to realize though, that my normal and His are not the same. So, I opened myself up to see what new thing He had for me.

I quickly realized that my problem was the word party, but then I thought through what makes a party. It's a gathering of like-minded people. They gather for the same purpose, whether it be to celebrate a milestone, to dance, to get drunk, to fellowship...they have the same purpose and goal in mind. Am I like-minded with Heaven? Yes! Do I want to join in and party with Heaven? YES!!! The words she spoke around party had to do with me rejoicin…

if we judge....

This week, I took Little D for his ear checkup. After years of infections and two previous tube insertions, T tubes were surgically implanted in 2004. These are like regular tubes on steroids! They are (almost) guaranteed to never fall out. When they quit working they have to be surgically removed. They have done wonders for him, and we see the doctor 2-3 times a year just to monitor them. Upon observation, Dr. M. stated that the left one was perfect, but the right looked like it was crooked. He wasn't sure if it was still working properly, so he pulled out a handy little gadget to test it. Even though it looked off, it was still working perfectly. He decided to do the left side too, as a precaution. He looked at the screen, reset, and tried again. He couldn't believe it. The side that looked perfect wasn't working at all. On the 45 minute ride home, I was thinking about all of this and praying that when we return in a couple months, all will be well. In the midst of this,…

no park...no reverse...no neutral

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We had been having trouble with our van. The gear shift was all messed up and we eventually lost the ability to put it into park, and then to put it into reverse. If we wouldn't have had it fixed we would have lost neutral next. By the end we were parking it and starting it in neutral and never able to go backwards. Believe me, it was not fun. We thank God that it wasn't anything major and we fixed it for hardly anything. And through that God taught me a lesson.

Spiritually we are like a vehicle : able to go wherever we want, in any gear we want. Just as we lost the ability to be correctly in park, reverse, and neutral, God wants us to delete our spiritual "park", "reverse", and "neutral". I don't think that His Spirit ever intended that we should even have those gears, but our flesh added them in as a way out, an excuse, a reason to be lazy in our walk with Him. He draws us to Him always in a forward motion. We cannot park and stop our activ…

busy livin' or busy dyin'

There is a movie called The Shawshank Redemption that the hubby and I like to watch. One of our favorite lines from it is " Get busy living or get busy dying". Really that's what we are all doing - no middle ground. God reminded me of that line and of the fact that He wants His people busy living - all out; actively pursuing our destiny; purposefully without question. He created each one of us with a plan for our lives. What are we doing with that plan? Casually playing at Christianity - showing up on Sunday in the right clothes, with the right attitude, saying all the right things? We leave church and walk out into the world unchanged and therefore, unchanging those in the world around us. Who is in our sphere of influence that needs us to move, needs us to do, needs us to bless, needs us to be what He has called us to be?! I don't want to be just busy dying - going through each day concerned with all the busyness of mylife, my cares, my selfish desires. At the end …

being multiracial

*In 1967, the year that interracial marriage was legalized everywhere in the United States, 72% of Americans were opposed to it, and 48% felt that it should be prosecuted as a criminal act.
*In 1991, the percentage of people opposed to interracial marriage (finally) became the minority.
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Growing up multiracial in this white part of the world was difficult, to say the least. My parents married only one year after it was legal for them to do so. My dad is white, of German and Swiss descent, and my mom is black, with a heritage that has traced our roots back to Africa, and also includes Native American and white. I was born into an era where the majority of peo…