Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Who am I?

Hello, World!

I have learned the hardest part about life is becoming who you want to be, and then experiencing things that can change you.

It is a challenge to keep being the person you are in spite of the circumstances and the people around you at any given time.

Shakespeare once said, "To thine own self be true." I find this so true. If you know who you are, and what you stand for, and what values you hold dear and WHY, then nothing anyone says about you or to you should ever change who you are, or how you react to "life".

Working in a prison, I have come to reflect on who I am on a daily basis. It is not just the prisoners I have to worry about who use their judgments to attempt to attack, censor or disrespect who I am. I have learned to begin each action, reaction or response with "Who am I?" and "Who does God say that I am?"

I am a princess. This is not my home. It is not my desire to be someone I am not. I do not wish to change my home address. I do not wish to believe in the worth that other people put on me. I know my worth, and no matter where I am or who I am with at any given moment, I will ALWAYS be me.

Have a blessed day!

The Spirit of Fear

I have come to the conclusion that what is mostly wrong with the world today is that there is so much fear. People, in general, are afraid of everything. No one wants to offend anyone, and they feel a deep sense of dread and danger when it comes time to stand up and do the job they have been called to do.

God has told us not to fear 365 times in the Bible. You would think that if you heard God say do not fear every day of the year, people would actually listen and obey.

Now, I have not found anyone who is fearless to do what is right and good. And, part of the problem there is that "right" and "good" are too open to interpretation.

I see it all around me. At church, when it concerns the government, when it concerns parenting, when it concerns our jobs, and it has paralyzed us as a people.

Satan is effectively taking over this world. All the evidence you need is the prevalence of fear surrounding us and flowing through us on a daily basis.

2 Timothy 1:7
“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.”

It has become so bad that those who tend to take chances, gamble on outcomes, and face challenges everyday are being cast by their peers as being stupid, idiotic, selfish and crazy.

And, yet, it is the fearless that change the world

Today, the World is due for a big change. It is going to take the fearless to do it and make it happen. If you have any doubt whether or not God has called you to be that people, read your Bible. He says it 365 times.

If you call yourself a child of the Most High God, then it is time you prove it by putting on some courage and growing some spine!

But, when you do, remember, it is the fearless that most people are afraid of!

Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Butch: My Hero

I was about two-years-old when my dad brought home a tiny puppy, not more than five weeks old. He was black, with brown markings on his nose and around his feet. He wasn’t a pedigree, or specially bred dog. He was just a mutt. My dad told me his name was Butch. After that, Butch became my hero.

My mother didn’t like animals in the house, so we made him a bed of old shirts and rags and placed him in the garage. Every day I would play with Butch, pulling him by the ears, or picking him up by the legs. I was just a baby, myself, so Butch didn’t really mind.

As he grew, he would follow me around the yard. When I would slide down the slide, Butch wanted to slide, too. It wasn’t long before he learned to climb the ladder behind me, and slide down near my back.

When my mom re-married, we moved to the country. There were woods all around us, with a beautiful pond, and a large garden during the summer -- with all kinds of vegetables growing in it. Butch would follow us down the trail to the garden, and bark at all the bugs and grasshoppers that he would stir up, on the way.

During the spring, we would go camping at the lake, and Butch would welcome the invitation my step-dad would give him to jump in the back of the pick-up and go with us. He liked to follow us into the water, and splash the water on us, when he would shake his black fur at the shoreline. At home, he could be found on the porch most of the time, basking in the warm heat, as his tongue hung out of his mouth.

On fall mornings, he would bark to warn me that the school bus was on the way. Later in the afternoon, he would be there to greet me when I got off of the same bus. He would walk in front of me, to warn me of holes in the road, or snakes I might not see.

During the winter, it would sleet and snow. We would go outside and skate on the ice, in our front yard. One year, Butch re-discovered the slide. My neighbors and I would laugh at him, when he would climb the ladder and slide halfway across the yard, then turn around and do it again.He thought it was fun.

One spring, when my baby sister was only three, I was left to care for her while my mother went to work. I sent my sister outside to play while I fixed lunch. I knew Butch would take care of her.

It wasn’t long after she went outside, that I heard her scream, and Butch was barking madly. I opened the door to see what the problem was and heard her scream, “SNAKE!” She was doing as she had been taught to do when she saw a snake, she was standing still and screaming for help.

I ran out there to see the snake better; then I knew I had to get her out of striking distance of the snake. I didn’t have any idea how I was going to do that. Finally, I said, “Butch, I need you to get his attention so I can kill him.” I didn’t expect Butch to respond, but he did.

Miraculously, Butch picked up a stick in his mouth; then ran to the other side of the snake, away from my sister. He tossed the stick in the air and barked. The snake turned around and struck toward him, missing him, and giving my sister time to run away. I went into the shed and brought back a hoe, and with Butch’s help, I killed the snake.

A few years later, I spent the summer with my real dad. When I came back home, Butch could hardly walk. I was informed that he had heart worms, and that the doctor said there was nothing he could do for him. I spent the next few weeks feeding him and petting him. Finally, one day, I cried as I told him I loved him.

“You’re the best dog anybody could have ever had,” I told him, “And, I’m gonna miss you something awful. But, I don’t know what to do to make you better.”

The next day, he was gone. I guess he knew that I was saying goodbye. A few months later, we found him in an old bathtub full of water at the edge of the woods. It was his way of sparing me anymore pain.

In this life, you are likely to cross paths with many heroes. If a hero’s qualifications aren’t limited to human beings, then I would have to say that my dog, Butch, was definitely one of mine.