Simply Trust and Believe…

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The school year is officially over and summer is here.  I have some opportunities teaching dance to keep me occupied throughout the summer and have scheduled a trip to the west coast for some rest and relaxation at the beach.  Although the summer has just started I already feel like it’s going to go by so fast… yet, I am hoping it slows down a bit so I can figure out what’s next in my life.  These past few months I have definitely felt a shift within me that’s yearning for a change. I had this same feeling a few months before I moved back home from New York… everything appeared to be the same but my inner being seemed to be moving elsewhere, not wanting to stay where I was.  I have this same feeling now.  This shift to make a change was confirmed in a dream I had about a week or so ago… I was in different locations, almost a step by step of my past to the present and then the future…the end result was… well, it was not where I am at in this present moment.  I knew the place, the location, but how to get there wasn’t quite clear … I was only shown where to go.

So after I had the dream I came across this documentary HOLY GHOST.  The film was pretty much curated by the holy spirit.  The director had no script, storyboard, no plans really on how to go about the film… he was simply in full surrender to wherever the Holy Spirit led him to.  The crew ended up traveling across the world, to a Muslim mosque in Morocco, Mormon territory in Salt Lake City, Utah, and Hindu shrines in India speaking of and praising Jesus Christ through song without any violence erupting… they were accepted, protected the entire trek.  Their tactics were quite different to what is usually seen on street corners, people holding signs speaking harshly into a microphone about damnation, and the urgency to repent…instead they walked the streets peacefully, being led to certain individuals in a gentle manner offering healing to any ailments they may have had. All the individuals they approached were open to receiving healing… and the crew of pastors/ believers simply laid their hands on them and prayed boldly in Jesus’ name…truly believing… the holy spirit was working through them… They were truly using His power. Also, aside from that, what kept them on course were promptings/ visions of landmarks that they were to visit… and somehow the very people they helped led them to these very landmarks.   They simply allowed the spirit to lead them without questioning or even figuring out on their own on how to get these landmarks… they truly put their trust in God.

The film made me think of moments in the past in which I was led by The Holy Spirt.  I had received a vision,a dream… I mean there was even a time I was lost in New York and heard a gentle voice lead me to which subway car to get on, and which exit stairway to walk out of and then I was led to a friend that actually needed some encouragement en route to where I needed to go.  I have had other experiences like that but at this moment, I do feel like the Holy Spirit is far from me… or maybe my old way of being in control is getting in the way to allowing to be led.  The dream excited me a bit, but really pushed me to know how and when this will all going to come about…anxious… impatient, really.  I want it all to transpire fairly soon but it’s only causing frustration from within.  As this month is ending, I am telling myself to trust and truly believe that the Holy Ghost will lead me… I don’t need to worry or make plans on how to have what He has shown me… I have done that before and it did not end so well…the Lord will lead me to the right people/ places to bring about my destiny.  Simply trust and believe….. my mantra 🙂

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The pic above is me in my new car… definitely an intercession of the Holy Spirit… confirmation that The Holy Spirit will come through and is listening.  In my old car I kept saying “I just want a reliable car”  and “a SUV would be nice!”  Now, in my own thinking I would’ve had to wait and save money but God made it happen way quicker…. okay, I got it… simply trust and believe… it’s coming sooner than you know it!

 

Then the Lord said to Abraham, “Why did Sarah laugh? Why did she say, ‘Can an old woman like me have a baby?’  Is anything too hard for the Lord? I will return about this time next year, and Sarah will have a son.”

Geneis 18:13-14 (NLT)

 

 

 

Let It Go…For Real, For Real

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April is proving to be the month to re-focus. This month has called me to really look within and realize who I am… again. During the first months of this year, I felt like I was doing a lot purging of the old… clearing out what was holding me back, in a sense. This revelation came pretty clear when I had a major accident near the end of March… right before I finished my March entry in which I was anticipating the new. Thank God… yes, it was all Him… I was left with no broken bones, just some tenderness here and there … but after a few days of rest, long walks around the neighborhood and a free AMAZING massage I was up to par and ready to accept The New fully.

I remember how it all happened…It was a normal day. I went to work, gym after and then stopped by HEB to pick up a few things… a dozen eggs and green beans (part of the meal plan) and then I was on my way home.  So, before you go into the subdivision there is a long two-way street that leads into it….It was a rainy day, so I was going close to 30 miles per hour on this road.  As I was just a few lights away from home, a car in the opposite lane decides to do a last minute turn towards the cross street right in front of me. I hit the brakes but the streets were slick and I couldn’t make a complete stop, so I swerved towards the opposite lane to avoid a head-on collision with the car that turned in front of me….I ended up hitting a car in the opposite lane. I hit their left light, no major damage. Yet, my car was totaled. A father and his son were in the vehicle I hit.  The three of us walked out of our cars  just fine….a bit confused, but no major injuries. I explained to them what happened… even asked if they saw the car that turned in front of me, but the father could not recall, just still in shock on what just happened. After I saw that they were okay,  I called 911.  While I was on the phone answering the necessary questions I noticed the dad touching his head and could hear the little boy saying that his chest was hurting.  I hated that I had some fault in their pain…guilt ran all through me…these feelings stayed with me as I was talking to the person on the opposite end.  As I hung up the phone and looked at the scene I had caused, I followed the protocol by answering the necessary questions to more authorities that came on to the scene within minutes….I still was concerned about them….looking back at every chance that I could…. but then somehow as I was surrounded by policemen, EMS workers, Tow drivers… the little boy swooped up right beside me with a huge smile and showed me his toy… I looked down and cracked a slight smile…. calm within the storm.

After all the surreal-ness of the situation dissipated, I realized my chest was hurting like crazy, I could barely move my right hip, and my knees were throbbing with pain. Traffic, police cars, ambulances, flashing lights… and all the while I remember holding my bible for some reason. I didn’t know how I got it but my sister had noticed that I had it in tow. I guess it was confirmation that this was All God.  My dad and sister came on the scene and they were able to take me to an urgent care facility… avoiding the HUGE fee from an ambulance. Through it all, I stayed pretty calm… to my surprise. I didn’t cry, I wasn’t yelling…. I was cool as a cucumber… is that the saying? Anyways, I guess somehow I knew this was all going to work out. While I was in the backseat, I saw my car being dragged off by a tow truck … and I had this feeling, this knowing, that this was the end of the old. I got that car when I first moved back to Houston. I experienced a lot of soul-searching in that car. I was lost, confused, heartbroken, full of doubt, even depressed…a bit toxic and negative, but somehow it brought me closer to Him…it brought me closer to where He wanted to be, and what He wanted me to be.

My new car isn’t exactly New New… but it is a nice upgrade in make, model, year and size!  I few scratches here and there but I think the scratches actually are good for me….keeps me grounded.

Since the accident, promptings to re-focus and fully surrender to His plan have taken precedence in my life. I still have some small slip ups (negative thinking) but they seem to be only temporary… realizing that there is something bigger than myself at work.

I have also realized that I personally can’t help everyone that comes along my path… personal interactions to heal need to be… well, there’s only so much I can do. I am learning that my life doesn’t call me to give up on my own personal well-being to help someone but the very gifts that God has blessed me with can initiate transformation within others…a step towards Him.  I am learning to give myself time frames … not necessarily avoiding personal interactions with people, but not investing long periods of time in trying to help them…especially when I am still broken myself. I am learning to find balance from within in order to reach more through my gifts… gifts, that I am still honing and cultivating… Gifts that are still being revealed within me.

 

Now I’m sure of this: the sufferings we endure now are not even worth comparing to the glory that is coming and will be revealed in us.  For all of creation is waiting, yearning for the time when the children of God will be revealed.

Romans 8:18-19

 

Oh, and on the day I returned back to school while doing my morning duty in the cafeteria, a kindergartner came up to me and gave me this sticker File_000

Confirmation that the old has passed away.

 

That New New

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I decided to put a pic of my new cousin to commemorate newness…the theme of the entry.  The beginning of this year has been a push to remove all that is old, long overdue in my life.  I needed to let go of past hurts… old habits… and past roles that I thought I needed to be.  The meal plan helped with this process.  I was shedding away pounds as I was shedding away dead weight spiritually that needed to be cleared out.   The process was hard… spent quite a few times in prayer in tears but knew this was the only way to make room for more clarity, wisdom and simply… “THAT NEW NEW.”

In fact, I even listened to Hope City’s podcast on Detox throughout the month of March… and even took a break from Facebook and whatever else that could attract more clutter.  I wanted to break away from old routines of trying to help everyone that crossed my path… going to the extremes of letting my joy fall to the wayside as I helped them… I am learning now about boundaries… to love from a distance… to be consistent in prayer and allow God to work on those that I can not fully help.  I realized that was my MO for most of my life… constantly running with people that had good hearts but had a lot negativity around them.  I aware that this was happening, but my overwhelming desire to be there for them, to comfort the, seemed to take over my own sense of joy, peace, and overall balance in my life.  I worried about them… I prayed for them more than I prayed for myself…these people were my friends, so I would even put my own happiness on hold to ensure that their happiness was intact.  I was giving them all of my energy, good energy, alleviating some weight off them but then taking on their weight.  This came clear to me this month….near the end of March right before Easter.  It was the revelation of revelations.

My dreams have even started to make sense… I have these new dreams… but then dreams I had a long time ago are starting to make sense.  I am starting to recall.. or maybe God is calling me to recall…. what He showed me years ago…as if to show me that they are starting to bloom soon.  Like years back… I had a dream that I was walking on a college campus and there was so much darkness,  it was a cloudy day and people were just angry… then out of nowhere, I lift my hands up and rays of light comes out of them.. this strong light takes up all of my energy and strength….then all of a sudden I fall into someone’s arms… JESUS…with eyes closed, breathing heavily…then slowly I opened my eyes, which were full of tears and saw a beautiful sunny day.. people smiling and getting along.  I had shared this dream before in one of my blog entries, but now I have more clarity… working with young people may be my calling.  Also, awhile back I had a dream that I was watching this stage transform.  First, it was a small stage with homemade stage scenery for a play… then the small stage got bigger and bigger, transforming into a much more extravagant stage with high-ceiling, bright scenery… and somehow I knew I was directing a play on this HUGE stage.   When I had the dream I didn’t quite understand it.  It all started to come together when I had a dream sometime last week… I was getting costumes lined up backstage.  I was also wearing a gold bikini top and shorts… which definitely symbolizes the bikini competition my sister and I are prepping for… so maybe all this preparation (the process) was molding me to work with children on the stage.  The dreams and the random theater projects that just came up out of the blue (God) were all for me to see that I could do this…even if I thought I was not quite qualified to take this on.

Even writing for the stage has been placed in my heart.  I wrote a play when I first moved back to Houston.. and this past week started to write another…. not sure what it’s about but the theme lies in identity.

This newfound calling has always been present in my life now that I think about it.  Writers and plays… I mean in all the plays I have acted in the writer of the play has always been present in the rehearsal process… which is pretty rare.  The writer was present to direct and produce the entire project.  I witnessed the whole role of creating and then producing your own work….all to show me that I had the potential to do the very same thing.  Even in New York, I met a writer that I kept “bumping” into that was getting his Masters at Juilliard.  The random interactions led him to invite me to see one of his plays at Juilliard and then his other play at the Lincoln Center…. he now writes for TV shows.  He was maybe a glimpse of what I had the potential of doing one day.  I even got to meet Ishmael Reed by performing in one of his plays in New York…another successful playwright.  AND, my roommate in New York was a playwright…hmmm.

In middle school, my dad signed me up for a creative writing class, which I had no interest in taking, but left it on schedule anyways, and I ended up enjoying the class.  It was then that I realized that writing brought peace within me…my therapy.  Another sign is this blog.  This was not at all my idea…my friend’s boyfriend, who is now my friend, decided to build this blog for me.  Not sure if he thought I had this interesting life but something, or rather The Holy Spirit,  thought this may be a way for me to realize my calling.  I am actually connecting all these dots as I am writing this right now.  Oh, and just last year, a friend of mine, who happens to be good friends with the Locke family, invited me to attend a reading of Attica’s Locke’s new book… who happens to be one of the writers of Empire.  I’m not a fan of the series but I respect that a writer from Houston made it to Hollywood with a successful tv series… hmmm…

AND… since I’ve been back home all the guys I’ve dated have been… what?  WRITERS!!!

AND Funny, with all this revelation… I realized that I turn 33 this year.  Resurrection Year!!!

Well, I guess the detox cleared out all that junk that distracted me from my calling… it’s time to get to work!!!

 

 Imagine there’s a wedding going on. Is that the time to tell the guests to ignore the bridegroom and fast?  Sure, there’s a time for fasting—when the bridegroom has been taken away. Look, nobody tears up a new garment to make a patch for an old garment. If he did, the new patch would shrink and rip the old, and the old garment would be worse off than before. And nobody takes freshly squeezed juice and puts it into old, stiff wineskins. If he did, the fresh wine would make the old skins burst open, and both the wine and the wineskins would be ruined.  New demands new—new wine for new wineskins.

Luke 5:34-38 (The Voice)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Art of Discipline

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In the days leading up to Lent until now, I definitely feel like I am in the wilderness.  I feel like I am being tested in every area of my life right now… will I go back to old behaviors or will I step back and look at the bigger picture, and make the choice to move from a more spiritually mature place? The test is Self-Control and the he questions are as follows: Will you let go of the need to be in control?  Will you trust me?  Will you control your emotions? Is there another option other than anger and fear?  Can you uphold peace, even when you don’t understand what’s going on?  Will you have faith? Will you come to Me?

So yeah in the physical, and in the spiritual (in my dreams) I am being hit with situations that are causing me to answer these questions… by the way, I know the answers to these questions are all YES…. I just need to release my first inclination to take control, but instead let go and allow the holy spirit to take over…. in essence it’s all about coming back to Him.  To bring every frustration, uncertainty, fear to Him… I am learning that in this process.  I have to admit, it’s been awhile since I’ve been in my prayer closet.  Shoes, clothes started to take precedence in that room… I would glance at the pictures and prayers every now and then but never made the time to sit and pray.  I also think for awhile everything seemed just fine so my need to sit in that prayer room didn’t seem worthwhile… I mean I still prayed.  I took daily walks in the neighborhood before work and talked to God then, but to be honest I was not truly expressive.  How would it look like if I just fell down to my knees and started crying in the middle of Rice Village?  I need to make time to be completely vulnerable to God… and this season seems to be the most appropriate time.

Lent: To abandon a pleasurable habit as an act of devotion and self-discipline.

Since this has been my test to pass, I have found some outlets to maintain self-control… writing.  This blog, along with journal writing has helped me flesh out what I am  really feeling… Working out allows me to release all the toxins in my body, which in turn leaves an effect on my mind… working with children….It’s no coincidence that God put me in the position to work in Special Education, in which I have to work with children that are emotionally disturbed.  In working with these children we have to find outlets to control their anger/ frustrations… take a walk, write, talk… maybe even dance.  Yet, I think the main outlet needs to be prayer… I need to be constant in this…being vulnerable in His presence always.

On top of all this reflection and tests… I am on this strict meal plan with my sister.  She is competing and I decided to go through the process with her… to add on to more self-control/ discipline.   It’s hard because I like to eat! I get cravings… ice cream on these really beautiful sunny days would be so nice …but NO! No dairy! I guess this would be the whole “fasting for 40 days and 40 nights” ….which may be even effect how I handle these tests…

I know these tests  are leading me to something good.   Its gets hard  sometimes, especially when I have to just wait and be still…  yet I know there is something beautiful in the works… a foundation to do His works in more dynamic ways.

 

 

The Spirit then led Jesus into the desert to be tempted by the devil. Jesus fasted for 40 days and 40 nights. After this fast, He was, as you can imagine,hungry.  But He was also curiously stronger, when the tempter came to Jesus.

Devil: If You are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.

Jesus (quoting Deuteronomy):  It is written, “Man does not live by bread alone. Rather, he lives on every word that comes from the mouth of the Eternal One.”

Then the devil took Jesus to the holy city, Jerusalem, and he had Jesus stand at the very highest point in the holy temple.

Devil:  If You are the Son of God, jump! And then we will see if You fulfill the Scripture that says,

    He will command His heavenly messengers concerning You,
        and the messengers will buoy You in their hands
    So that You will not crash, or fall, or even graze Your foot on a stone.

Jesus:  That is not the only thing Scripture says. It also says, “Do not put the Eternal One, your God, to the test.”

And still the devil subjected Jesus to a third test. He took Jesus to the top of a very high mountain, and he showed Jesus all the kingdoms of the world in all their splendor and glory, their power and pomp.

Devil:  If You bow down and worship me, I will give You all these kingdoms.

Jesus:  Get away from Me, Satan. I will not serve you. I will instead follow Scripture, which tells us to “worship the Eternal One, your God, and serve only Him.”

 Then the devil left Jesus. And heavenly messengers came and ministered to Him.

Matthew 4:1-11 (VOICE)

As we proceed

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I left 2015 with a huge dose of uncertainty and a dash of expectancy, particularly in the career realm.  I had experienced this amazing high by choreographing a dance piece and received such great feedback that I had this adrenaline to keep at it.. yet, I am back where I started.  In the Special Ed Resource room tutoring students in math and reading.  I am not bitter… well, maybe a little.  Why give me an opportunity where my creative talents are utilized only to go back to sitting in a chair?  Opportunities to teach dance again are coming up, which is good, but there are only temporary gigs… nothing permanent quite yet…

During the holiday break, my dad asked if I was going to be more aggressive in seeking jobs in the dance education  scene… and I was hesitant to say yes because for the past four.. five years I have been VERY aggressive in seeking jobs.  Spent hours at Starbucks applying for jobs… museum jobs mainly, in the education department, of course, but none ever responded.  I take that back, The Museum of Fine Arts did, I was in the second round for some position, but didn’t get it.  Other than that, none of the jobs ever got in touch with me.  I guess I could steer towards applying to dance jobs, which I have I done a little bit of, but I feel like God has something else in the works… which is cool with me.  I mean with all the jobs that I had applied for in the past few years,  God has provided positions nowhere near to what I applied for.   So, to answer my dad’s question of being more aggressive.. well, what’s the point when God seems to have His own agenda in mind… and to be honest He has proved to know what’s best.

And the only reason I applied to museum jobs was because I would like to build a new museum… so I was thinking I needed to attain more museum experience to take strides toward this long term goal. Yet, God saw it that I needed to gain some insight in other areas before I embark on the museum world.  He always put in places where I received favor… there was connection to a place, a person, the dots were being connected… I just needed to trust and take part in the experience… observe, listen, learn, and  then be used to His liking.

2016 is proving to be the year to work towards this long term goal… maybe because things have slowed down a bit so my focus goes back to this long term goal. The past four years I have worked on it here and there.  I wrote a narrative that explains the origin and how I would like to use the space, a 3 year business plan, researched grants and possible donors… all while having job positions that did not require me to work long hours or take my work home with me but positions that had me in constant contact with children…which provided me the inspiration to stay focused on the project.  God was showing me who would benefit from this museum.  The creative child, the emotionally disturbed child, the orphan, the quiet child, the shy child, the overlooked child…

So, I have these big plans, right… have all this work on paper and done research, but have no idea on how to begin.  How do I build an institution? What do I do leading up to its fruition?  These questions come up every now and then…I do get a little frustrated but I am learning, through prayer and bible study that worry will not bring on peace or any type of revelation.  I am learning to stay calm and balanced… and I have quite a few activities that help me maintain this: the gym (my therapy sessions), family/ friend gatherings (long conversations with my sister), and of course, my prayer time, which has definitely been extended due to this predicament… also a new friend has made it not so bad.  He has become a bit of “breather” for me… and in a lot a ways a healer.  Although, he calls me his healer, it is definitely not one-sided.  I mean, it’s weird but I thought I was healed in certain areas within me, specifically in dealing with past hurts but in our conversations the band-aids are being ripped off , in a sense, allowing the wound to heal out in the open… no longer keeping it concealed….Maybe this healing needs to happen before I take on this huge project…

 

Eternal One:  If you will listen closely to My voice—the voice of your God—and do what is right in My eyes, pay attention to My instructions, and keep all of My laws; then I will not bring on you any of the plagues that I did on the Egyptians, for I am the Eternal, your Healer.

Exodus 15:26 (VOICE)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Generational Blessing

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A week or ago, I decided to attend Lakewood church.  It was the Saturday before Christmas so I knew the sermon was going to focus on the season… Jesus being the reason.  I went alone because I was going to met up with a friend in the area later on that night and I just felt I needed to be there.  I had never gone to lakewood by myself, usually went with my sister but she had other plans with friends… I was hesitant to go because I was a little leery about going on my own.  The safety issue came up in my mind… parking at night in the area, walking in the garage alone… fear crept up a bit but then something came over: I can’t let fear stop me from going to church… So I proceeded to attend the service.  I got there early and was ushered to sit at the ground level, front and center near the stage.  I sat at the end of the aisle, easy access to the exit.  As I sat, I did a bit of people watching. Looked over at families deciding wear to sit…ushers guiding patrons to their seats, laughter and smiles… and even noticed someone in my row getting emotional, tears falling down…I just smiled and moved on to the next clan to watch.  I was fine with being on my alone, I needed some type of revelation… specifically on the upcoming year.  I had finished my temporary gig as a dance teacher and needed some type direction on what to do next.  I had a lot of anxiety at this point because I was unsure on what to focus on or what was in store for me.  These thoughts ran through my mind as I sat in my seat at Lakewood.. and then someone handed me a CD that read: GENERATIONAL BLESSINGS and said, “Merry Christmas.”  I smiled back as tears started to well up in my eyes.

When I moved back home to Houston, the plan of action was to heal.  The healing first started within myself but then transpired over my family.  When I first became aware of the generational curse I was scared and was in disbelief of the whole thing.  Yet, little by little God revealed to me that this was real I needed to take part in the healing process, even if it meant staying in my parents’ home and taking on the assistant role in my job positions.  It was the only way to gain wisdom… to allow others to lead me… to allow others to teach me… so I could be ready to allow HIM to lead and teach me.  While in this process, I started to clear out the clutter physically and received revelations in dreams and vivid visions that led me to clear up clutter spiritually. The most important thing I had to do while in the process was remain positive…even when I was bombarded with frustrations on where I was and where I wanted to be.  I was forced, or rather swayed towards trusting in Him.  These past four years have been nothing but tests.  Tests that measure my spiritual maturity.  Tests that stripped everything I thought I was and took me back home to the person I was called to be… and that meant to heal all that was hindering me from becoming the person HE created me to be.

Before the new year has ended, I have seen signs of healing that have caused me to live with expectancy… but I do have a huge dose of uncertainly… with a nice balance of peace… which may be where He wants me to be.

 

God the Father knew you and chose you long ago, and his Spirit has made you holy. As a result, you have obeyed him and have been cleansed by the blood of Jesus Christ.

May God give you more and more grace and peace.

All praise to God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. It is by his great mercy that we have been born again, because God raised Jesus Christ from the dead. Now we live with great expectation,

1 Peter 1:2-3 New Living Translation (NLT)

 

No, we’re not twins

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At the moment, I am at Whole Foods writing… I needed some time to breathe outside my parents’ house.  I had a moment of clarity on the ride up here though… my sister is pretty awesome.  I, of course, had some frustrations that lead me to seek an outlet outside my parent’s home and the first person I run to… before Jesus… is my sister.  She is at work but I have her work number in my cell when times like this arise when I need to let it all out.  I am learning that it is best to let out my frustrations and not keep it in… and my number one go-to person is my sister.  Although younger, she gets me… we are always playing on the same team.. and funny when I’m upset or frustrated about something she is stable enough to get me through it and when she is down and in tears I am poised to pull her out of it.. it’s crazy how that happens we are never both down in the dumps, one will always be ready to bring the other back to life.  One would think this has been our thing our whole life…yet, this bond has only lasted for the past four years.

When I graduated from high school, she was in elementary school on her way to middle school.  I was set to live in Austin for my college years.  I was the typical college student in Austin.  I was not this wild child in the streets, but had a nice balance of maintaining a good GPA and exploring sixth street.  My college was consumed with nights in the editing room working on film projects and hanging with some pretty eclectic folk the city had to offer, and didn’t include talking to my little sister on the phone. I don’t even think I had the desire to call her… which is so hard to admit now.  I had heard there was a situation while she was middle school in which my dad had to intervene and talk to the principle about her choice of friends… did I try to steer her into the right direction?… nope.   I think I said a few words about the situation to my parents but never directly had a heart to heart with her….I would come down for the holidays… the perfect time to connect with her but I was caught up in hanging out with friends and my older brother and his friends…not hanging out at home with my younger sister… initiating time with her was never an option… I was caught up in other interests… MY interests.  I’m actually tearing up as I am writing this.  Don’t get me wrong we were cool but it was very superficial… We didn’t know each other on that deeper level.  Maybe age had a lot to do with it… 8 years is nearly a decade.

After Austin, I head straight to NY…. we still don’t talk on the phone but I see her on the holidays and when she and mom come to The City to visit me… we are cool but it’s still not that deep.   I did look forward to seeing her when they would come to visit…I loved seeing her light lit up when she was in Times Square here and when she found the perfect Louis Vuitton knock-off of her choice.  I stay in NY for a few years….I am yearning for something more…some purpose in my life.  I decide to leave and head home back to Houston.  That first year back, I can’t really grab on what I am looking for but I know I need to be with my sister… so I attempt to strike conversation with my estranged sister.  There are no words.  I ask questions but only one word replies and silence.  How do I get through to her?  This becomes a challenging task for me after several attempts.   I then turn to Jesus/God to make this right… to have a REAL relationship with my sister.  In the process of praying and trying, we would have little tiffs here and there, not because we hated each other but simply because we didn’t know each other… how could I expect her to open up to me when she didn’t even know who I was… I didn’t even know who I was.  I spent the majority of her life running away from who I was… who I am… I was being influenced from everything outside myself…

Everyday was a challenge… especially when I had to get my head straight and then on top of that build our relationship.  Yet, it was when I stopped being in the world… in the scene… and looked at my sister I found Him. And in turn found myself.  I was looking everywhere else but all needed to do was be in her presence which then steered me to be in HIS presence.  Timing has it that God brought us together when we needed each other the most… in building our relationship we have both found purpose…. our inner-most conversations have brought on clarity and revelation.  WE bounce ideas off each other and gain courage to go at it.  She has become my rock (along with Jesus, of course) during this time of transition.  I am truly blessed to have such a beautiful, strong, inspiring sister.  Thank you Jesus!

 

Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

File Oct 07, 8 47 25 PM

The Plan …

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I know I mentioned in my last post that I have such clarity and clear direction… yes, in this moment I do understand the task at hand is to teach dance, but this is a temporary gig… I can’t but ask what’s next?  I enjoy this new opportunity but deep down feel there is something else in store for me… still in the process…still in hiding…not quite ready to be in the world on a larger platform.  I am content with this, knowing that I don’t want to be out there in the world mis-representing my true identity or falling into the wrong influence and hurting myself and others by being caught up in the wrong agenda.

So, like a month ago, there has been this subtle push to pray stronger…to write it down, speak it out loud and hold on to it.  Keep it until it happens…and have faith that the request is already present.

After reading the book, Fervent by Priscilla Shirer and seeing the movie War Room.. I have decided to create my own war room…a prayer room in my closet.  I actually did it this morning… which is not really when I sought out to do it… I was supposed to do this a month ago but I kept pushing it back.  Events kept popping up or I would be too sleepy to pray, much less set up a war room… but today I woke up… after breakfast and running some morning errands I came home and opened my closet.  I cleared out the floor, grabbed a few spiritual books, my journal, markers, and some notebook paper. At first, I kept the door open… having the natural light come in from the windows in my room… then as I started writing and drawing pictures..I decided to close the door.  It was all so therapeutic… the coloring and writing calmed me.  I then pieced it all together… arranging family requests together, then career, emotional, etc.  The end result was a collage of child-like drawings and prayers.  It was definitely an awakening of that little girl deep within me … a little girl that needs help from her father.  I became her again… maybe this closet will keep me in my place… to have humility in knowing that it is not I that bring on huge, miraculous blessings but my father in heaven that makes it all happen…. my control issues need to be left at the door… the closet door.

I have decided to do this challenge… The War Room Challenge.  I will utilize this sacred place morning and night.   Read aloud every word and mediate on the pictures drawn.  I will have faith that all will transpire in God’s timing and in His way because He has revealed to me that these are His promises from my life.  I will hold on to these promises and know that they already belong to me.  I will have faith.

Fast Forward…It’s been almost a week now and for the most part I’ve been true to the challenge.  These past few days I was in the war room once… in the  mornings.  In the mornings I am more ready to reflect and read each prayer, whereas in the evenings I am content with saying my short prayers in bed… which isn’t bad but I would like to really use the space…. The Challenge!

Any Changes?  Well, I am more at peace in the areas I am concerned about… and my instinct to compare to others has calmed down a bit… the prayers help me to reflect that there is a preparation period at hand… and clarity that these prayers are linked to my destiny… In writing the prayers, I realized what gave me purpose, I realized what concerned me the most… concerns that were outside of myself… concerns that were linked to others.  I came to realize that every little detail, experience in my life guided me to write these prayers… prayers that could only be answered by God’s grace.  These prayers are not minimal to the least… these prayers can no human hand do… only He can.  With this realization, prayer needs to become my top priority… to secure His provision not just over me but provision over the plans he has placed in my heart to heal others.

Not sure when this challenge will end… I guess when I don’t see it as a challenge but as a way of life…

 

This scripture is written in the middle of all my prayers:

For the Eternal watches over the righteous, and His ears are attuned to their prayers.  He is always listening….When the upright need help and cry to the Eternal One, He hears their cries and rescues them from all of their troubles.

Psalm 34:15, 17

 

 

A Healing Request

File Sep 27, 11 57 21 AM

(My other brother is not pictured… lives in Dallas. )

So a few days ago, I did a random check with my brother, who lives in Dallas with a “U good?” text.  I expect the typical response, “I’m good.” then we move on to daily happenings in each other’s lives…but this time he mentions that he had a dream.  Now, when anyone starts off with “I had a dream..” I am at full attention.  Dreams are very valuable to me… like little gateways to heaven….messages sent to guide us… destinies revealed.  So although I am at work, I am looking at my phone waiting for his text.  So, the dream was set in our childhood home and he and my little sister were inside.  There was man in the house too, being nice to them but my brother knew it was devil, so he was trying to figure out how to get out of the house, but then he looked out and saw me in the distance sitting in a car and he knew that they had to get to me to save them.  So he ends the text with that, and I’m like “Wow!” He then adds, “The devil was scared of you in the dream.”  Really?!

I couldn’t help but analyze the dream.  Why were my second eldest brother and little sister in our childhood home with the enemy? And my brother knew it was the devil but not my sister? And why was I there to rescue them?  And why was the enemy scared of me? Hmmmm.

So, I just finished reading Fervent: A Women’s Battle Plan for Serious, Specific, and Strategic Prayer by Prisicilla Shirer.  The book was inspired by the movie WAR ROOM, which I saw this past week.  The book and movie encourages the use of prayer for any and every battle that comes against God’s plan…instead of fighting each other, come into prayer and ask God to intercede and allow Him to do His work… fight your battle.  It emphasized that while in prayer declare out loud God’s promises found in The Word and speak out loud to the enemy, rebuking every scheme and lie that steers you to lose your peace and joy.  Now, going back to my brother’s dream, I may have a few reasons on why the enemy is scared of me….maybe this very blog scares me … or my boldness to thank him constantly.  Other than that… I know it’s not my long list of duties at church… I can’t even say I belong to one particular church, to be honest.  I am kind of bouncing around at different churches right now.  I attend Catholic mass more consistently than the others, adhering to my upbringing…I was even for awhile attending 7:30am mass with my mom, which of course made her day, especially when she made many prayer requests for me to return to my Catholic faith when I started to attend other Christian churches, non-denomination churches.  This was not at all an act of rebellion but a call to experience true communion with Christ… to be filled spiritually.  I yearned for something more than the spoon-fed, memorized rituals that kept me distant from building a true relationship with God.  The institution to ensure this never really came into view… well, at least not yet.  I still go to church, mass usually, but may catch a sermon by TD Jakes, Tony Evans, John Gray…. read a book by  Jentzen Franklin, Thomas a Kempis, DeVon Franklin… to be filled… to be awaken again.  Yet, prayer has been a constant… my compass to direct me to the right place, opportunity, and people…

Speaking of people, I’ve been asking God lately: “Why did you put this person in my life?”  I met someone… well, been re-acquainted with someone that I met three years ago.  After some time, being consistent in asking for clarity on that specific question, it became clear to me that he mirrors me circa 2010, my last year in New York.  I was working 24/7, survival mode, attaining money was my drive, heavy, tired, yearning for a healing.   He has actually asked me to heal him.  Believe me I am trying… I wish I could just touch his life and let all the bad stuff disappear… but who am I?  Right now I have such good in my life, newness and clarity, direction… yet God brings a person in my life that needs the very blessings that I have in my life… as if to say, “Now that I have healed you, go and heal others.”

I will say, I am not afraid to go back to the darkness… only because I feel a lot stronger than I was before…. spiritually, emotionally… my inside parts are more stable…and it seems like that’s where He wants me to be…in the dark places… maybe where we all should be.  When you are made whole in Christ, bring others to wholeness through Christ.  I will stick to prayer to steer me to know what to do, where to go, and what to say to strangers, new and old friends and family, especially family, to bring about healing.

Go out into the world and share the good news with all of creation. Anyone who believes this good news and is ceremonially washed will be rescued, but anyone who does not believe it will be condemned. And these signs will follow those who believe: they will be able to cast out demons in My name, speak with new tongues, take up serpents, drink poison without being harmed, and lay their hands on the sick to heal them.

Mark 16:15-18 (THE VOICE)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A New Direction

 

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This past week I had to go with faith in the career arena.  So for awhile now…like for the past five years, God has been leading me to California.  I received this revelation my last year of living in New York, and since then been getting signs of confirmation that this was where I was meant to be. It became quite obvious when I signed with a LA talent management company this past January.  I went to LA to sign the contract, met the CEO and got some new headshots.  Throughout the year, I kept in contact with them and was given a few auditions here and there.  As the months went by, it was suggested I do a showcase in July with other clients of the management to meet agents in Los Angeles.  In March, I decided to do it… not really giving it much thought though… it seemed too far away to really stress over or even think about.  By the time the school year ended, I was asked to teach creative movement classes at my old childhood school during the summer… a hint that I’m still in the process of coming home.

After doing some research, I created a 10 week lesson plan for the creative movement class.  The first couple weeks dealt with using the body to express certain emotions and incorporating levels, shapes and paths which then led to learning choreography.  In the beginning I was really tied to the lesson plan and the activities I attained from my research, but as I got more comfortable I started to add in some other ideas that popped in my head… all within the lesson at hand, of course.  It started to feel like second nature and the positive feedback only motivated me to keep at it.  On the last week of classes they performed the pieces I taught them over the summer… they were 32 count combinations… short and sweet.  I was really impressed because a bulk of them actually remembered them and were counting to the music… even quite a few boys! Some even told me they practiced at home…. really?!  Mind you I didn’t plan this grand performance at the end with strict rehearsals leading up to it, so the initiative to practice at home was really nice to hear. Time flew by pretty fast, so fast I had no time to really breathe in what transpired over the summer with the children.  So, on the last day of classes I had asked one of my classes, (in the picture above) what they learned.  We sat down in a circle, which was how I always started and ended my classes, and one by one they shared their responses.  When they shared they really thought about their answers, some even paused a bit to get their words together.   Their answers varied from learning to dance better to being able to count to the music and create their own dance pieces… all the answers a veteran dance teacher would expect, but to a newbie like me….well, I was moved to tears.

So rewind to about two weeks before the creative movement classes end… and my teary-eyed scene in front of the children… I attend this showcase in LA.  Deep down I am dreading it…not because I am nervous but because I really don’t care. So, I arrive at the hotel and at the very same time the hotel is hosting the Special Olympics.  You have people from all over the world working the event, going to seminars, wearing their badges, speaking different languages… and then you have actors/ models, along with their stage moms and entourage on the same floor.  The first thing that comes out of my mouth, “I wish I was with them.”… the Special Olympics crew.  It was clear to me that God was trying to show me something… but I was confused.  Wasn’t this thing that you opened up for me? Wasn’t this the thing you wanted me to do?

When I came home from LA, I was little discouraged…I thought this was my open door to my destiny but it just didn’t feel right.  I went back to teaching dance and tried to let go of the whole trip…just focus on what was happening in Houston… teaching dance and writing…but then the management contacted me for an audition.  It was given to me on a Wednesday and the deadline was that Friday.  I looked at the email quite a few times and thought about doing it but didn’t want to.  Yet, on Friday I got a call from the management in reference to the audition… I respond by email.  I told them to book me out since it was already the deadline… but then I didn’t want to seem lazy so I offered to work on it over weekend.  They agreed and gave me an extension.  I did the audition…a commercial for a cell phone and received feedback the next day or so.  The client said I was too serious for the cell phone commercial.  In the past, I would have been really upset about this feedback but at the time I really didn’t care because honestly what kind of impact would I have promoting a cell phone… I found greater purpose in teaching and writing.  The feedback only fueled my courage to express myself honestly to the management:

Thank you for keeping me in the know of everything. I have to admit my drive to solely focus on acting has diminished a bit for awhile. I have been working with special needs children in the arts for the past few years and been honing into my writing, which has now cultivated into a ministry. I feel like my purpose may lie outside of acting for now and would understand if you need to drop me. You deserve a client that is truly dedicated to the craft and I am not too sure If I can do that right now.

After sending off the email there was sense of release and the knowing that I did the right thing….a knowing that God has something else in store for me.  Funny, that morning, before I was going to write that email, I ran across a sermon by pastor John Gray.  He mentioned that this was the season that all was going to come together and God was about collide you into the thing you were created to be.  “That thing you thought was thing is not going to work…The Lord knew what the enemy was going to attack so He made the thing look like the promise ….God is about to crash you into The Promise.”

So I sent off the email and I have this nice, peaceful feeling inside… but still uncertain on what to do next…

I have so much more to say, but you cannot absorb it right now.  The Spirit of truth will come and guide you in all truth. He will not speak His own words to you; He will speak what He hears, revealing to you the things to come and bringing glory to Me. The Spirit has unlimited access to Me, to all that I possess and know, just as everything the Father has is Mine. That is the reason I am confident He will care for My own and reveal the path to you.

John 16:12-15 (VOICE)