#WorshipWednesday..Scripture of the Day

For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer. 1 Timothy 4:4. That scripture says ‘everything God created is good’..EVERYTHING! If it’s God’s handiwork it’s good. The world may come in and corrupt it for a time..but it was created to be good, for good, to do good. We were created to be good and do good. We were created for God’s pleasure. We have a tendency to reject things, such as certain foods, but God’s word says if it is received with thanksgiving it is consecrated, made clean, set apart because it’s been prayed over. How awesome is our God! This scripture is an example of how powerful His word is;never underestimate it.

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Tell Me Your Experiences & Opinions. Bringing a #Character to Life

If you’ve ever done any kind of acting or theatre, you know how much goes into a production. The audience sees the finished product, but there’s so much that happens before opening night. There is lighting, staging, props, advertising just to name a few of the elements of a community theatre play. These are things the director and stage manager have to worry about. So what are some of the things actors have to consider when doing play? The actor has to be mindful of projecting their voice so that it is heard throughout the theatre, if mics are not an option. If mics are available, you still have to make sure you’re loud and not mumbling, or breathing too hard in your mic. There’s also costumes, makeup and scene staging or blocking that are a part of the process. But aside from all the tangible things, the most important to an actor are character development and the actual performance. So how do you develop a character? How do you bring the role to life? Well, first of all the director will have a say as to how the characters develop because it’s their vision. They know what they what to see and how the audience receives the play. As an actor your job is to listen to and get behind the director’s vision while still incorporating your view of the character and storyline. You may encounter some friction but if the goal is to put on the best production possible you and the director will come to an agreement. First thing I do as an actor is look over the script and highlight my lines. It helps me focus better. I also look at any direction the playwright has given in the script. It may say the character is loud or soft..timid or bold. ‘Doubt’ by John Patrick Shanley, a play we recently wrapped had no direction for emotions as far as my character was concerned. I really had to feel her out. When I’m done scoping out the role and reading over the script, I get a feel for the character…or not. If I connect immediately, I think about any similar experiences I’ve had or friends/family have had. I also do research on the character’s job, illness or whatever she’s dealing with. I take all of these aspects and decide which I will use most to bring the character out. If the role is a stretch for me, I tend to use my experiences more. If I really get the character then I use her experiences;I give her a backstory of there is none. My goal is to make the character as real as possible. I don’t always want the role to be one that’s beloved by the audience so I play up the weaknesses and not so pretty side more. If I’m completely invested I will take on the character’s thoughts..I stop thinking about how I would approach the scenario. I start to think the way my character would. When I choose to become the role it takes on a deeper meaning. It’s more actual acting for me. However I choose to play a role, I give it my all. I want the audience to leave affected by what they’ve just seen.

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This Fear Has Got To Go: Ways to be free of it’s grip

Have you ever been gripped by fear? You can’t act or sing because of pesky stage fright? Ever wanted to do something but you keep making all sorts of excuses to get out of it? Fear is a major reason some of us don’t go forward in our lives. We convince ourselves we’re using wisdom but we’re really just afraid to get out there and try. We have a fear of failing, of criticism and what others will think of us. We fear losing our lives, and some of us even fear succeeding. I’ve always thought people are afraid to succeed because we get so used to a lower level of living if we start succeeding we’re not sure who we will become. Also, with success comes responsibility and we may be afraid we won’t be able to live up to it. If any of these things apply to you, know that you are not alone. The good news is that we don’t have to continue to live in fear. As one who has been gripped by fear herself, I’ve adopted a few strategies that have helped me conquer and push past my fear. The first and most important thing I do is, I speak God’s word. I speak to myself, “God has not given me a spirit of fear but one of a sound mind….”, as well as “perfect love drives out all fear.” God’s love is so powerful that fear has no choice but to leave. Another thing I do after speaking the word, is I do the thing that has made me afraid. We’ve got to put action to our talk. I have to face the issue head on, trusting that God will take care of me. Along with talk and action, I pray. I pray that I can face what I have to do every morning. Pray builds you up, it allows time for us to receive God’s love and care. It brings peace to a trouble mind and anxious heart. If you’re gripped with fear today you don’t have to be tomorrow. Be strong and courageous! You were made for more than just cowering in a corner. You were made to live a full, abundant life.

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#WorshipWednesday

The scripture I’ve chosen for today’s Worship Wednesday is one of my favorites. I choose to live my life by it. It is Matthew 25:40 – The King will reply, “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” How amazing is that! When we go visit a sick friend or give someone who is homeless a meal, or take care of an orphan in Haiti we are doing it for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. He is the reason we live and tells us helping others honors Him. It brings tears to my eyes. I mean I’ve always had a thing for the underdog, even before I was saved. I can’t stand knowing people go to bed hungry and I give to those who hold a sign asking for food/help. To know my God cares that I care makes my heart sing. Also, last year we(my son and I) became the least of these when I stopped working. After the bills were paid I wondered how I was going to feed us. Well, without a word to anyone about it, a friend called out of the blue and said she wanted to take us grocery shopping. Only God..only God. So, you see why this scripture has special meaning for me. I will continue to help others, to give back to the world. In doing so I am doing it for my King.

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Call me #mochamompreneur

I’ve always known I wanted to own a business or work in the arts. I never envisioned myself in an office growing up. Yes, I went to college and decided to major in business. My heart just wasn’t in it. I received a degree in Early Childhood, and enjoyed aspects of it, but I was only going through the motions. Here we are in 2011, I’m 39 and finally feel like I’m coming into my own. Does anyone else feel that way? It’s so funny to have waited all this time to follow my dreams. I used to get a little sad. I would think I should be further along;I should be a multi-millionaire by now…waaa…waaa…waaa! I had to come to terms with myself and stop seeing me as a failure. In 2008 after prayer and research I decided to start my own errand service and plan events while I was it. It’s been hard work, a bit of roller coaster with the economy but it’s never died. I’m still here. One of the reasons I took the plunge was my boy. I wanted him to see that you can pursue your dreams. I don’t want the fear that stopped me for so long to permeate his life. He needs to know with God all things are possible. I also wanted to do it because I love seeing women of color handle their business. We’ve come from such disparity and still face some, but we are making an impact. In our town, there were the women who’ve been leaders in the community but they were always older. They’re aren’t that many in public office here and I haven’t met any that are event planners. In business conferences, I tend to be the lone black woman and I want it to be different. So, I ‘integrate’ things and represent to the best of my ability. This past year, I started a non-profit after years of a passion for helping others. I root for the underdog, volunteer and yes I’m the bleeding heart who gives money and food to the homeless. I learned that means I’m a social entrepreneur. That’s a nice term..I like it. So that’s why you can call me mochamompreneur. I’ve got the mocha skin, I’m a mom, and business/social entrepreneur. Am I making Oprah bank? Nope, not yet. But, I do what I love. I follow my passions and live life without regret. God is good. If He can take a lump of nothing like me and transform her whole life, just think of all that’s waiting for you.

Purpose&Passion

Purpose&Passion

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Maintaining #MyMommyCool

It’s been a long day, the week from Hades, I’ve still got work to do…a deadline to meet for pete’s sake. Why is this kid still up? Who gave these kids sugar so they wouldn’t wanna go to bed? All I’m asking is for them to get their pjs on, brush, say their prayers and go to bed. How come it’s going to take a move of God to do it!! Plus, they still didn’t pick up the mess in their rooms. How many times do I have to say it! GO TO BED NOW!!! Da**, there it is…that little temper. It just had to rear it’s ugly head. After all, I am known to be a level-headed person, how did I go there, why do I go there? Sound at all familiar? Unless you’re PollyAnna, then yes this has happened. You feel terrible, you would die for your children, you don’t mean to be so short with them. You are not alone this. I’m thinking of all the parents I know, and you are not alone. It’s taken time, my early childhood training, and yes reading my bible to get me to a point where I am equipped to handle those stressful moments. I’m not perfect, never ever will be. My child, heck people in general still get on my nerves sometimes..we’re all human. However, I’ve made a decision to not hurt my son, or let us go to bed upset with each other. I had to take a long hard look at myself…ouch. I realized I bark at people sometimes because I’m feeling powerless at the moment and I feel I can regain that power by raising my voice or snapping. I know when I’m tired I get irritable. When I’m frustrated about my business or finances I get anxious. I also know that sometimes my child enjoys pushing my buttons. Taking all of this into account I’ve made some changes. When I’m tired I say that. I let my son know and he knows that I’m irritable and doesn’t try to push the boundaries. I’m learning to let go of my pride and need for complete control. That one is so tough. It is so hard to not appear weak. As a single mom I want to be seen as strong. ‘I can handle it’ was my motto. Now my motto is I can not do it all…I don’t even have or want to. I don’t have to be wonder woman; that was Linda Carter’s role. The word No has become a part of my vocabulary. I realized I don’t have to get into a power struggle with my child; if I’ve already made it known that what I say goes. It means I have to stay consistent and be persistent. I can not ask him to do something then give in and do it myself if he doesn’t move fast enough or do it the first two times I tell him. Nothing breeds contempt faster. It will. How can it not? We are being disrespected and if we don’t address it when it happens we get resentful. When the next incident happens we loose our cool. Don’t let it get that far..as Barney Fife(hope that’s right) would say..”nip, nip it in the bud.” Next thing I will say is get some rest. When we’re pushing ourselves we approach burn out. So take some time for you and go to bed at a reasonable hour. It’s helped me a great deal. Also keep in my mind, when a stress situation arises with kids, that you love them and don’t want to see them hurt. You want to discipline and guide them, not crush their spirits. We don’t have try to break a child’s will. We just have to nurture it into something positive. Remember you’re the adult and you are not confronting another adult. This is your child. Obeying and respecting what you say is their end of the bargain. So be firm and let them know that B can’t happen until they do A. You’re not moving on the subject;it’s not a choice. We do this with a firm but loving tone. Consistency will go a long way. Prepare yourself before you approach your children. Recognize that you may face resistance and be ready to stand your ground. If the consequence is no computer time then stick to that. Your kids will know you’re serious and they will start to fall in line. They will become self-disciplined as you continue to raise them that way. They will be conscious of repercussions their decisions have and make better ones. The less you will have to be in a tug of war with them. Parenting is a career and you have to work at it. The benefits you receive will all be worth it.

Our take on The Matrix

Our take on The Matrix

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#Women Can Get Along

For a lot of years I really didn’t like women in general. I had friends that were women yes but I didn’t like adding new ones to my ‘circle’. It just seemed as if whenever someone new came in we ended up with conflict. I would cringe when my best friend would introduce me to someone new. I’m not the only woman who has ever felt that way. Matter of fact, just yesterday a friend told me God is leading her into women’s ministry and she never wanted to do that. Why is that? Why is it that we have such problems with each other sometimes? Why as women do we say we don’t like women?! Is that we have a problem with ourselves deep down? Is it because we know we can be catty too? Are the concerns about other ladies legitimate? It definitely requires a lot of prayer and soul searching. Ask God to help you examine your heart. Whatever the reason I didn’t like other women, I’m over it now. I am deeply involved in women’s ministry and I am an advocate for women of color entrepreneurs. I know that knowing Jesus is the reason for the change of heart. He can soften the hardest of hearts. His unconditional love and acceptance makes me what to love others. We all have to make our own choices, but I can say my life is richer for having and nurturing relationships with other women. I love sisterhood.

Ladies dancing up a storm

Ladies dancing up a storm

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