Monthly Archives: January 2012

Ashamed No More Women’s Conference

“My, My, My…”

Those were a few words from one the attendees of the Ashamed No More Women’s Conference hosted by One Love Restoration Ministries.

For this conference to be the first says alot.The room was filled to capacity, the word was awesome, the women were blessed and I believe God was pleased.


An attendee even gave her live to Christ during the service. Praise God!

The testimonies from the speakers were amazing.

The goal of the conference was to let the world and the enemy know that
these speakers and women in attendence are “Ashamed No More”. What the enemy meant for bad God has used to mold our destinies.

To God Be The Glory for great things he has done and going to do concerning One Love Restoration Ministries.

Thank you Co-Pastor Annetta White for moving forward with the vision God gave you concerning this conference.

Job Well Done !

Click here to see a  video with Co-Pastor Annetta White & founder of BAM, Nicole Cleveland.

Season.Crave.Wait

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The year that’s about to end, I could say, was a bittersweet journey for me. There were some events this year that made me appreciate life more and there were also some that made me lock myself inside my room and cry out to God for help and enlightenment. There were a lot of things I learned about life, about my faith, about people, and topping them were the things I learned about God that made me enjoy my walk with Him all the more.

During our Victory group’s Christmas party held in Tagaytay, one of the activities done was writing down on a paper designed and printed just for the occasion, the top 5 things we are thankful for in 2011, the top 5 things we are believing God for in 2012, and our message to God.

In all sincerity, I had a tough time choosing the top 5 of the things I’m thankful to God for in the year 2011. It maybe a bittersweet ride but nevertheless, I realized I still have countless of things to be grateful to God for. He ushered me in to the start of the year with much hope in my heart and still continued to fill my heart with more wonderful things to aspire for in the year and years to come.

Perhaps, I could summarize my 2011 in three words: SEASONS.CRAVE.WAIT

SEASONS.

God put me in a number of seasons in 2011. In some of these seasons, God let me hear His voice loud and clear in almost all the conversations I had with Him, while there were also some seasons when He seemed too silent and far away. Nevertheless, I am just as grateful for all those periods of my life because I’ve learned to understand what ‘walking with God’ actually means and what it really takes to be able to enjoy that walk on a level that you and God only know.

CRAVE.

The seasons of my life in 2011 made me crave for God and His words more than ever. I was able to feel that certain longing to get to really know Him and hear His voice. And being able to finally hear God’s voice was the highlight of my year. I never really thought that that thing could actually happen. Since then, in most of my quiet times, I would always   be excited to hear His voice and what He wants me to know and be enlightened about. In most of my decisions, if not all, I’ve learned to seek Him first before deciding what to do.

WAIT.

I’ve checked my 2011 Faith Goals recently and yes, not all of the things listed there were crossed out yet. Not yet. Nonetheless, I am thankful that God blessed me with a heart to continue to wait on Him patiently. Being able to get to know Him more and spend more time with fellow believers, I was now able to associate and include JOY with WAITING.

Waiting and hoping on God is indeed much happier and bearable than to wait and on hope on man. People could fail you, even the closest person to your heart could let you down. GOD NEVER WILL.

~~~~~

Apple Lopez

www.applelopez.wordpress.com

A Flower In The Springtime

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A flower in the springtime
She blossoms with radiance
The glow of her soul
Reflects love and grace
She is so often overlooked
For her genuine beauty
The value of her existence
Is far above rubies

Who can find a virtuous woman?
Though she be not far
Our eyes search for her at a distance
Yet, she is standing in the midst
With a voice of humility
She speaks very softly
The wisdom of her words
Are true and costly

She is so highly esteemed
And her value is very high
Because of her Lord within
To Him she prays and draws nigh

She rises early in the morning
Before the dawn of day
Looking well to the ways of her house
She eateth not the bread of idleness
Her husband shall rise up and call her blessed
She is an ornament of grace to him
Though he may not see
Giving him freedom to be all he can be
Standing behind him with sincere dedication
Until he reaches his true destination

This flower is strong
Though she may be watered by her own tears
She stands firm and strong
Without any fears

You may notice her color as you are walking by
The vision of her presence has been impressed
In your mind, then you will begin to realize
This is a flower that has blossomed in the springtime

Written by: Charlene Adcock-Donelson
Copyright © 2000
All rights reserved
CAFANPA CREATIONS

PORN-Aholic; Expose the Secret and Save your Life

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Being held captive by pornography can sabotage one’s life because of its’ ability to cloud sound judgment.  Author Zerek L. Baker Sr. walks readers through his experience from the first exposure to his victory; “Victory begins with the admission that you’re in bondage and the confession to those important to you that you’ve lived a life of secret sin.  As long as it’s kept secret you can never be free of guilt, shame and condemnation,” says Zerek.

“PORN-Aholic” doesn’t just speak to those who are entrapped or overcame pornography issues, it resonates with wives, sons, daughters, & others who are often times the ones who may be most affected.  Chapter 7, “SHE LOVES ME…SHE LOVES ME NOT,” is specifically written to the wife of a porn addict.  Zerek Baker first assures her that she is NOT at fault; the problem exists within the husband.  Also in this chapter, mothers of sons are offered a gentle, but profound, warning about assisting them in guarding their minds.

 

Zerek offers 5 tools that helped him gain some control over his flesh in chapter 5:

  1. Get a Victory Over the Flesh
  2. Singleness of focus
  3. The power of fear
  4. Get a life
  5. Connection with God

For the single men Zerek L. Baker Sr. suggests that they start with tool #5 and work backwards. He also stresses that he is not writing about pornography as an authority; he felt compelled to do so as a life calling & the above listed tools were a practical & realistic set of disciplines that gave him a “degree of victory” over the vice of pornography.  Zerek states that gaining a basic understanding of the switches that trigger the pornographic impulses and actions, one will be able to effectively take part in the battle for control of the flesh.

While reading “PORN-Aholic; Expose the Secret and save your life,” by Zerek L. Baker Sr., I felt the sincerity of this book’s purpose.  Zerek has daringly exposed his old secret to help ‘you,’ save your life.

~~~~~~~
Reviewed by Larie Writes
Author of “My Heart Speaks”
Breathe Again Magazine Resident Book Reviewer

5 Tips to Simplify Your Life in 2012

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Each week, thousands of twitter users join small business expert and author , Melinda Emerson – @smallbizlady  as she chats with  other industry  experts on her twitter talk show #smallbizchat. This past week her guest was Allyson Lewis, – @Allyson7Minutes, author of The 7 Minute Solution: Creating a Life with Meaning 7 Minutes at a Time.

Below are 5 Tips from the chat  to simplify your life in 2012.

The requirements of small business can be overwhelming if a lack of focused attention on the priorities of your business are not engaged.  There are literally hundreds of things you can list that are a part of your success in business, but if most of us are focused, it boils down to five things:

  1. I think the first priority for every small business person should be to take the 50,000 foot view and it begins with thinking.
  2. Taking time to think without distraction or taking time to think with FULL attention will allow you to clarify your strategic plan.
  3. With your strategic plan, you can set boundaries for a clear path that leads to a meaningful destination.
  4. Next, prioritize your plan into high value activities to achieve your objective, take seven minutes each day to create a written daily plan of action so you will be much more likely on what is most important to your success.
  5. Finally, you cannot do 100 activities a day. Commit to accomplishing 5 high value activities before 11 am each day. We call these completing these your 5 before 11.

There are hundreds of microactions to support those five steps, but until the first sale is paid for, business is about finding out what you do, connecting clients who need what you do, and how to deliver that product, service, or consultation for a profitable payment.  It is very easy to spend an inordinate amount of time wishing you had clients, but when you shift into a specific, measureable, actionable expectation goals each day such as  “I will greet each person with smile and “How can I assist you?” or “I will call 10 of our clients to see if they need assistance and to make them aware of our current offer” , we move from overwhelmed to on target for success.

Imagine how doing 5 of these actions before 11 a.m. each day. How many of you have actually called, or checked up on 900 of your clients or potentials in the last 90 days? Could you see the value of consistent achievable microactions for your business?

You can read the full chat on Melinda’a website – http://succeedasyourownboss.com/01/2012/just7/

Melinda Emerson is a nationally known small business expert,trainer, speaker and the author of Become Your Own Boss in 12 Months; A Month-by-Month Guide to a Business That Works

Allyson Lewis is a nationally known speaker, columnist,trainer and author of several books. Her latest book, The 7 Minute Solution: Creating a Life with Meaning 7 Minutes at a Time.

 

Saving Samson From Delilah

 

A Fool, according to the Bible, is someone who is dull, and or is unresponsive. Are you a foolish woman when it comes to covering your husband? There are many details in this job description, but three points to focus your attention on is time, opportunity, and pressure. These three things are part of the equation that the enemy uses to plant the seed of sin in the mind. And this is what he will use to attack your man.
God has given women the privilege and ability to bring life to their husbands with love. Women have enormous power with men, and it can be used for good or for evil. Consider the example from the Scripture above; the power of Delilah with Samson. Samson could take on an army of warriors, but he surrendered everything he was to the charms of one woman. The wisest and richest man to ever live fell under the interest and advisement from his many wives and concubines.

Feminine power was intended to give life. Eve was designed to complete her man, to nurture life in him, as well as the life that came from him. Many wives do not understand how profound this power is. God has blessed women with a feminine ability that you can use for great good in your husband’s life. God has plans for your man. He wants to use you to grow him into a godly man. Your power can meet his aloneness and his companionship needs, affirm his sexual identity, protect him from temptation, and keep him safe, secure and saved throughout his life.

Meet His “Aloneness” Need

There is something missing inside of every man. And it’s by divine design. After God created Adam, He said, “It is not good for the man to be alone” (Genesis 2:18). It’s an astounding truth that the perfect God of the universe created a perfect human being and then declared, “it (his aloneness) is not good.” God intentionally created the first man with an aloneness need. Man was incomplete. God orchestrated the perfect arrangement for His grand finale of creation: a woman, the “helper suitable for him.” It is still true since “in the beginning” in Genesis, a wife makes a man complete and whole. God removed a rib from Adam’s side to fashion his mate, but He never replaced it. The wife is God’s plan to fulfill that need and cover his heart, where the rib once was.

God brought you into his life to be his “helper” to meet his companionship need. In a Christian marriage, this oneness is a unity of mind, body, and soul, and is celebrated through the sexual union. In marriage we can touch the holiness of God; we can recapture a taste of what was lost in the Garden when a husband and a wife express love, transparency, trust, and sacrifice in the mystery of marital intercourse.

Bless His Sexuality

God created men to be attracted to women; I don’t apologize for being who He wired me to be. He had multiple purposes in mind. Adam’s need was not just for a companion. He needed Eve for the joy of finding pleasure in her total person—body, soul, and spirit—and for the affirmation and blessing of his identity as a man that come through her love for him. A wife can profoundly validate her man’s God-ordained manhood. Since all men are created with an aloneness need, they journey from boyhood into adulthood needing to know that their maleness is good and positive. Humanly speaking, this is a question that only his wife should answer, a blessing only she should give. He has no other legal way to express this need.
Genesis 2:25 says, “. . . and the man and his wife were both naked and were not ashamed.” As a result, every wife has a deep, life-altering responsibility to her husband to be a helper, and help him feel like the man God created him to be. If you love my husband, you won’t view his sexual needs disapprovingly, but as God-given and for a purpose. God made him and God wired him.

Protect Your Husband from Temptation

You have the power to protect your husband from temptation by making sure his sexual needs are met by you and you alone. I have a good friend who said it this way: “If you don’t want to do his laundry, your husband can take his clothes to the cleaners. If you decide you don’t want to cook anymore for him, he can go out to any number of great restaurants to eat. But if your husband isn’t getting his sexual needs met at home with you, and he goes somewhere else, God calls that a sin.” It’s not just his sin, but yours as well. The same Bible that commands him to be faithful to you, also commands you to cover his need. Too many women would love to have him if I let him leave home for work or travel constantly in a state of sexual deprivation. First Corinthians 7:5 (NKJV) tells us, “Do not deprive one another except with consent for a time, that you may give yourselves to . . . prayer; and come together again so that Satan does not tempt you because of your lack of self-control.”

Don’t misunderstand what I’m saying. If your husband sins in this way, he’s responsible before God. But at the same time, understand that you play a powerful role in helping him not yield to temptation. God created us as men and women with profoundly inherent differences. If you love him, you’ll want to protect him from the limitless temptations that the enemy of his soul floats by him day after day. A person can get away from drugs or alcohol, but there is nowhere to go to get away from that type of temptation. You are most powerful as a wife when you become a student of what your husband likes and then use that knowledge and your feminine skill to protect him from temptation and sin. Renew your mind with the Song of Solomon, and realize how much sexual freedom and fun you are really designed to have with your spouse.

Keep Him for Life

Have you ever thought about what it means to “have” and “hold” your husband? To have implies a possession. It means he belongs to you and no one else. He is your responsibility, and you are his. Are you fulfilling your sexual responsibility? For frequency? Creativity? Have you turned him down more often than you have invited his love? Do you put his needs before or after those of your children, your church or your work?

To hold means to keep or bond, much like a magnet. A magnet has the power within to pull another polar opposite to itself. My husband and I are virtual opposites in nearly every way. It’s what attracted us to each other in the first place. But I must continue to be a magnet in his life if I am to keep him. If you notice, you start to loose the attraction for him once you try and make him just like you. Opposites attract, not the same polarities.

This may come as no surprise to you, but most men want—really want—their wives to passionately desire them. And when you express sexual longing for him—whether verbally or nonverbally—your husband is unlikely to refuse your magnetic power. The more a wife affirms her husband’s God-given manhood, the more she helps build him into the man God wants him to be. This power of a wife to affirm him, bless him, protect him, and keep him is blessed by God. It is a very good, nurturing, life-giving gift. Knowing this, I’ve often wondered why women don’t want or choose to use their God-given powers to affirm and nurture their husbands more often.

Make an investment that could pay wonderful dividends in your marriage. What man wouldn’t go the extra mile for his bride after she would publicly admire him and privately honored him?
By using her feminine powers in such a powerful way, a wife can ignite a fire in the soul of her mate that blazed for weeks. This is, after all, a biblical principle.

This power you have as a wife is blessed by God. It is a very good, life-giving thing. The question remains: What will you do about this power you possess? Are you going to put it to death, bury it, deny it, or will you choose to exercise your sexual power to create a soul-satisfying confidence in your man?

John L. Donelson
Jdonelson.rcm@gmail.com
Copyright © 2011
Revelations Media, LLC

 

Radical Hospitality: Inviting the Stranger into Your Home

Marcia’s voice cracked as she spoke. “Hello, Mrs. Clark, is your husband home? I’d like to wish him Happy Father’s Day.”

I handed the phone to Jim, smiled and said, “Your other daughter is calling.”

Months before, while sitting at my computer, an e-mail caught my attention. The subject line read, “Young woman, broken and alone.” The sender was Dr. Robert Campbell, a local internal medicine specialist who had opened an inner city clinic# to reach the poor of Augusta.

“Marcia fled an abusive relationship and is now in a temporary shelter. Will you meet with her?”

On my way to meet her, it occurred to me, I don’t even know what she looks like.

Fear and loneliness didn’t require a description. Twenty-nine -year-old Marcia Mitchell, an African-American woman, sat in the back of the restaurant and brushed tears from her face. She jumped at every noise; her eyes locked onto each customer who walked in.

When she saw me, Marcia jumped to her feet and wrapped her arms around me. “Are you the woman Dr. Campbell sent to help me?”Marcia’s voice cracked as she spoke.

I still had no idea what help looked like. The inside of my gut churned. “You hungry?” We sat and talked for two hours over diet coke and chicken snack wraps.I touched her on the shoulder. “Tell me how you came to be in a shelter.”

Marcia leaned forward. “I don’t earn enough money to make it. Bills I couldn’t pay kept coming. Then I met Jonathan# . He offered to move in and help with expenses. He was good to me, at first. After a while, he grew controlling. When I did something he didn’t like, I caught his wrath. One night, I thought he was going to kill me. So I just got out. I didn’t take anything with me. Just got out of there. I’m in Safehomes# right now, but I have to leave in two weeks.”

Safehomes (and most shelters) placed a time limit of 30 days on how long a woman could stay. Although they do their best to help battered women relocate, many have no choice but to return to their abuser when their options dwindled. At the time I met with her at McDonald’s, Marcia worked two jobs and still struggled to survive.

She continued. “What I did was wrong, letting a man move in with me, and I paid a terrible price.”

Indeed she did. Continued to pay.

Marcia Mitchell, without a home, adequate income or a family to “fall back on,” qualified as a modern version of both the widow and orphan. What did it mean for her to live in community with other believers?

Although risky and slightly insane, I believed the Lord called me to bring Marcia into my home. As I began to pray, several passages of Scripture came to mind. Hebrews 13 exhorts us, “Let brotherly love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.” Job modeled radical hospitality when he said, “the sojourner has not lodged in the street; I have opened my doors to the traveler.” (Job 31:32, ESV). In Matthew 25, in the day of final judgment, radical hospitality is a mark of those on Jesus’ right. “I was a stranger and you welcomed me” or “invited me in,” as some translations read.

Marcia and I agreed to talk again in a week. Meanwhile, I prayed and pitched the idea of radical hospitality to my husband.

Jim, the engineer with a keen sense of detail, asked hard questions. How can we be certain that this woman’s abuser would not put our family at risk? Is Marcia sure she is ready to leave her abuser permanently? How wise is it to invite a stranger into our home?

A sense of relief filled my heart as I prepared to hear Jim’s rejection. Of course this was unwise, I mean, we can’t save everyone we encounter—

Jim squeezed my hand. “I think God is calling us to it.”
What? Had I heard the man?

I contacted a police officer in our church for additional advice. He told me Marcia’s abuser was well known to the sheriff’s department and a very dangerous man. “The cop in me says don’t do it, but the Christian in me says go for it. I can encourage additional patrols in your neighborhood. It’s a good thing you live so close to the police station.”

We waited a week before we invited Marcia to live with us. Perhaps she would find an apartment? As Marcia’s alternatives for housing dwindled, I realized how much confidence we placed in the secular community around us to care for the orphan and widow without ever truly understanding the limitations those agencies face. What did we expect someone like Marcia to do?

Dr. Paul Tripp writes, “We are not self-sufficient in any way. We are constantly dependent on God and others in order to live. Self-sufficiency is a delusion. Hundreds and hundreds of people have contributed to what we know, to what we are able to do, to what we have become . . . We were made for community.”

Our invitation shocked her. “Really? You guys would do that? I mean, what in the world? Are you sure? Listen at me. Thank you. Really, thank you.”

When our deacons learned Marcia had a large loan from Titlebucks that would take years to pay off at a hideous interest rate, they paid the debt in full.

I handed the title of her car back to her and said, “Promise me that Titlebucks and all agencies like them are part of your past. If you need help, we’re your family now.”

When tax season came, Marcia expected about a $300 return. Jim frowned. “That doesn’t sound right. May I take a look with you at your forms?” Together in front of a computer, Jim carefully typed in numbers as Marcia called them out. Two hours later, Jim said, “I double checked this, and it looks like your return is $1200, not $300. I like that number better, don’t you?”

Marcia burst into tears and hugged his neck. “No one had ever showed me all this before—helped me figure out a budget, and plan for the future. Nobody believed I had a future.”

After living with us for two and half months, Marcia located an affordable apartment downtown near several members of our church. She learned to maintain a budget. Since she has moved out, she ran out of money twice before the month’s end and she asked me for a loan. She took only half of what I offered. “I want to be able to pay you back.”

She did. Both times.

God does not call every family to the front lines of radical hospitality. I don’t claim to have all the answers to racial reconciliation, poverty and domestic violence. But I have to wonder. What would look different in the body of Christ if more of its members were willing to risk for the sake of another? I think part of the answer was in the Father’s Day phone call:

“Thank you, Mr. Clark, for showing me how things ought to be. You taught me how a man should love his wife and children. The love in your house spilled over to me. Happy Father’s Day, Dad.”

~~~~~

About the author: Gaye Clark is a freelance writer and cardiac nurse who lives in Augusta, Georgia, with her husband Jim and their two teenage children Anna and Nathan. She remains active in inner city ministry.

Sidebar: approximately 225 words

10 Things to Consider before inviting a stranger in:

1. In the case of domestic violence, ask the woman to commit to severing the relationship with her abuser permanently.
2. Be certain your entire family favors the invitation and is capable of maintaining basic precautions for your family’s safety.
3. Have the local abuse shelter or housing authority run a background check on the woman to insure the need is legitimate.
4. Communicate ahead of time in writing your house rules and expectations. Revisit that list frequently.
5. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from church members. Accept offers for meals, help with moving belongings, or transportation to and from work, childcare, etc.
6. Make your neighbors and local police aware of your circumstances.
7. Be patient. A woman in crisis may have difficulty planning her afternoon, let alone the following week. Help her make lists and prioritize her needs.
8. Create margins in your schedule: this is no ordinary houseguest. Be available to talk, pray and listen. Limit unnecessary demands on your time and energy.
9. Encourage her to communicate often with friends and family with whom she had healthy relationships in the past. Abusers often cut off or discourage such contact.
10. Recognize radical hospitality comes with enormous risks. There is no “happily ever after” guarantee. While that may be true, seek to look at current disappointments through the lens of eternity. God often changes hearts over a matter of years, not months.