The Kimberly Joy Blog

Know Yourself…Be Yourself…Love Yourself – THE KIMBERLY JOY SHOW Fridays at 4:15PM & Saturdays at 6PM on Inspiration 1050 AM & 103.1 FM WGRI (Cincinnati)

Category: Inspirational

Ordinary Is Just Not Good Enough

WHY IS ORDINARY JUST NOT GOOD ENOUGH?
According to II Corinthians 5:17, once you accept Jesus into your life as your Lord and Savior, He forgives you of your sins, purifies your heart, and makes you brand new!

Thus, you’re no longer defined by your past sins, by your past mistakes, by your present circumstances, by your surroundings, or by the negative things people still try to say about you. You are now a child of GOD! And I’m not just talking about any god, but THEE GOD!

“O Lord, our Lord, how excellent is Thy name in all the earth…..” Psalms 8:1

“Who is the King of glory? The LORD strong and mighty, The LORD mighty in battle.” Psalms 24:8

“Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised…..” Psalms 145:3

As the Bible declares, no one and nothing can ever compare to God for He is EXTRAORDINARY! Since we are made in His image and likeness (Genesis 1:26-27), we too are far from ordinary! Therefore, God expects us to follow His ways and represent Him appropriately (Ephesians 5:1).

Legendary Gospel group Commissioned, which introduced artists like Fred Hammond and Pastor Marvin Sapp to the world, recorded back in 1989 a song that has become one of my favorites entitled “Ordinary Just Won’t Do.”

“Have you ever needed someone,
A shoulder just to cry on,
To ease the agony
And find tranquility,
Or just have
A sweet and gentle touch
That speaks of words,
Speaks of words of love that mean so much?
Ordinary just won’t do,
I need someone, my Lord, I need someone,
That someone is You, that someone is You!”

As the song so beautifully explains, the ordinary is just not good enough! Rather, we need the EXTRAORDINARY God who loves us unconditionally, saves us, delivers us, heals us and empowers us to do great things!

Recently on my radio broadcast The Kimberly Joy Show, I had the privilege of interviewing Elder Benita Florence. Benita, a woman I’ve known for over fifteen years, shared her personal testimony. Growing up in the projects, at a young age Benita recognized that she is indeed extraordinary in God!

KJ: Welcome Elder Benita to The Kimberly Joy Show!

BF: Hello Kimberly Joy! How are you?

KJ: Oh I am great! I am awesome! I’m so glad to have you here! Elder Benita will you please take a moment to share with us your personal testimony of how you came to recognize that you are indeed extraordinary in God?

BF: Amen, I’m honored to share part of my story with the listening audience Evangelist Kim. You know, I thank God every day for the journey and where He brought me from. And I love Him so much. I’ll start off by saying I am a proud product of the West End. I am a West End kid.

I grew up in the Laurel Holmes Housing Projects, even though I spent a lot of my time in the Lincoln Courts Projects because that’s where most of my friends lived.

BF: But, being extraordinary and daring to be different started early on in my life, and I thank God that I know now that He had been with me even as a child. I am a proud graduate of the great George Hays Elementary in the West End and also of Jennie D. Porter Junior High School. I graduated from the Robert A. Taft High School down in the West End.

BF: Because of growing up in the inner city, you are exposed to various elements, whether good or bad. But most of my experiences I can honestly say were all good, and I am grateful for my humble beginnings. I do believe and now know for sure that God’s grace and mercy were with me even as a young girl. His unmerited favor, His compassion, His love for me. Even as we (me and my friends) faced several challenges, God was there for us, and I’m grateful for everything He has done in my life. I’m grateful He heard my cry, and He granted my requests even at a young age.

BF: I was baptized and introduced to God and Jesus Christ at an early age. My family went to Zion Baptist Church in Avondale. The late great Reverend Booth baptized me, and I had an awareness about Jesus and His Father God. Even though our family didn’t attend church every Sunday, the awareness was there.

BF: I knew who Jesus was, and I spoke with Him as a child growing up in the projects because sometimes people can have preconceived notions about children who might grow up in challenging situations or poverty or might not have a lot of material type things.

But I thank God that at an early age He gave me a spirit of tenacity. He gave me the determination and will to overcome things. And I don’t take it for granted. I am so grateful. I am so grateful to God for that.

BF: God has strategically placed individuals and situations in my life to help propel me forward to be successful in my life. I’m grateful for teachers. I’m grateful for school employees who took the time to encourage and just love on me. And if I really had to pick someone out, Judith Moore, if you’re out there, God bless you! I love you! I appreciate all the time and energy you put into me to make sure I got where I needed to go. Ms. Judith Moore, she was over the Career Development at Porter, and she later took over Jobs for Cincinnati Graduates at Taft High School. This lady took an interest in me and made sure I got specific things I needed to be successful in my life. And I just wanted to thank her.

(Benita, far right, and friends at Taft)

BF: As I journeyed on and graduated from Taft High School, I had the opportunity to move forward and go to college.

I entered into The Ohio State University where I graduated with a bachelor’s in Nursing Science, and that was with challenges, as well. For the entry Math and English tests I took, I didn’t score at a freshman level, so I had to take some remedial classes. But to God be the glory because it set a foundation for me, and it set a support system up for me, and I was able to transition through the five years and get my bachelor’s degree.

BF: As I moved forward (and we all have issues, trials, tribulations and tests), my family was facing some issues. I was one of those who might have clubbed and done things that were contrary to the Word and that weren’t helping me. They weren’t balancing or managing my thoughts, my life decisions. So, I sought the Lord, and I’m glad I sought the Lord! It was the best thing I could have done because I got the road map for my life, which is the Bible. I realized God is a God even in our suffering. And even as issues, trials, tribulations and tests came about, I was able to balance things and know that God is our peace, and we can rest even in the midst of the storm. We can quote the Word to ourselves and say:

“Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them [Satan and your enemies]: for the LORD thy God, He it is that doth go with thee; He will not fail thee, nor forsake thee,” Deuteronomy 31:6.

BF: I thank God even in my journeys as a Christian. As I studied to learn the Word of God, I wanted to get to know the Word deeper. An opportunity came available for me to attend Liberty University, and I received a master’s degree in Theological Studies. That was another answered prayer. I just wanted some personal time with Him and some personal knowledge to help deepen my relationship with the Lord. So, I’m grateful that I graduated in 2014 with my master’s.

And I’ll say I won’t take anything for my journey now. Everything me and my family went through, it makes you stronger. It’s good to know you can survive a storm and to know that a project kid, like myself, can make it!

BF: I just want to encourage the listeners, just keep yourself rooted and grounded in the Word of God. No matter what the people say about you, it’s all about what God’s Word says. Whatever God says about you, it’s true! We’re more than conquerors! We are victorious! We are somebody in Him, and it’s good to know that our self-esteem and confidence are rooted in the Lord. The enemy will try to steal, kill and destroy, but we have power over the enemy in Jesus’ name!

KJ: Elder Benita, thank you for that awesome testimony and encouraging word!

Benita Florence, a registered nurse with The University of Cincinnati Medical Center, and her husband Melvyne Florence serve as the assistant pastors of our church Power and Faith Ministries in Fairfield, Ohio.

THE PRAYER OF SALVATION
If you haven’t accepted Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, you can do so right now. I then encourage you to find a good Bible-believing church that will help you grow in your relationship with the Lord.

Romans 10:9 (NIV) says, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”

Please pray the following prayer:

Dear Jesus, I come to You confessing I am a sinner in need of a Savior. I believe You shed Your blood on the cross and died for my sins, were buried and rose again so I could be free! Please forgive me for my sins and the life I have lived. I confess You Jesus as Lord and accept You as my own personal Savior. According to the Word of God, I am now saved! Hallelujah! I AM FREE!

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY OF GOD!!!!!

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To subscribe to The Kimberly Joy Blog and receive new articles by email, please leave your email address in the box marked SUBSCRIBE TO BLOG VIA EMAIL provided at the end of the article.

Please follow The Kimberly Joy Show on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.

God Created You To Be Extraordinary

(THE KIMBERLY JOY SHOW-“Extraordinary: Dare to be Different Part 2”)

GOD CREATED YOU TO BE EXTRAORDINARY

Psalms 139:14 (New International Version):

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”

I appreciate the above verse because it reassures me that God didn’t create any junk when He created me. Rather, He delicately crafted me in His loving, yet powerful hands. Also, as it says in Genesis chapter one, everything God created was good. I’m good! You’re good! I’ll take it a step further and say we are extraordinary!

WHAT DOES EXTRAORDINARY MEAN?
According to the dictionary, extraordinary is “going beyond (superior to; more than; over and above) what is usual, ordinary, regular, customary, the norm; exceptional in character (moral quality–honest, courageous, disciplined, hard-working); noteworthy (worthy of being noticed or recognized due to some special excellence, standing out in the crowd); remarkable; having a special task or responsibility.” When we break down the word, we get EXTRA-ordinary.

II Corinthians 5:17 (King James Version):

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.”

People of God, when Jesus came into your lives to save you, He made you brand new! Therefore, what you thought you couldn’t do before, through Him now you can! Matthew 19:26 and Luke 1:37 state that with God all things are possible. The key is GOD!! We must keep GOD number one! He’s the one who empowers us to be extraordinary.

WHAT DOES EXTRAORDINARY LOOK LIKE?
Let me tell you about an extraordinary woman I know. This woman happens to be my longtime friend and sister in Christ. I’ve changed her name to protect her identity.

Victoria grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio. After graduating from high school, she went to college where she ran track and majored in Exercise Science. While in college, she became a lifetime member of the sisterhood of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. The sorority was founded in 1920 by a group of African-American women. After graduating from college, Victoria decided to enlist in the army where she served this country for six years. She later returned to Cincinnati where she got a job working with heart patients who were going through rehabilitation. Soon after that, she purchased her own home and went back to school for her masters degree.

When I first met Victoria, I can remember admiring her drive and determination to strive for the best! Although she wasn’t surrounded by many college graduates in her family, she didn’t let that stop her from pursuing her dream of earning a college degree. In fact, her story of success doesn’t stop there! Just a few years ago, Victoria decided to enroll in college for a third time. However, it wasn’t to earn her Ph.D. Instead, Victoria decided to think outside the box, step out on faith and pursue her desire of becoming an actress. Yes, an actress! She auditioned for the school she wanted to attend, was accepted into the program, and four years later, graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Dramatic Performance. Today, Victoria is living in New York. A dream come true!

When people first discovered that Victoria had decided to become a full-time drama student, I can just imagine some of the conversations:

“Did you hear about Victoria?”

“No. What happened?”

“She decided to go back to college to become an ACTRESS!”

“An ACTRESS?!!! Girl, you’re kidding!!”

“No, I’m not! She told me herself!”

“But, isn’t she in her 30s? She’s a little old for that!”

“You mean her LATE 30s!!! Yeah, she’s too old! I don’t know what she’s thinking! She has a good job already! Owns her own home!”

“Shoot! I know some women who would give anything to have her life!”

“THANK YOU! She needs to let go of that pipe dream and just be happy with what she’s got!”

Oh yes, I can just imagine!

Nevertheless, one thing I know about Victoria is that she has never been a person to live in fear. She’s never been one to allow others to dictate how she’s going to live her life. I believe at an early age she recognized that God had made her extraordinary. So despite the naysayers, Victoria decided to listen to the voice of God and trust He would continue taking care of her. And that He did! While she was a full-time drama student, God provided her with everything she needed. She was able to pay her tuition, her bills and her mortgage!

ARE YOU PASSIONATE OR PRACTICAL?
What are you passionate about? Are you pursuing your dreams or are you settling for what is easy and practical? Do you have those questions of “WHAT IF?” swarming around in your head? Do you want to look back over your life one day and wish you had taken a chance, stepped out on faith and pursued your passion? I know I don’t! I’ve had enough regrets from allowing fear to stifle me, which is why I’m now writing blog posts, books, and plays and sharing inspirational messages on my own radio broadcast.

I can truly say I am most happy when I’m doing what I love! How about you? Oh yeah, you too? Do you know why? It’s simply because God put those passions in our hearts. God made you and me extraordinary. So, I encourage you, like Victoria, to step out on faith and pursue your dreams! Don’t believe the notion that you’re too old. God’s not saying that! Why do you think He’s still nudging you to go back to school, to write a book, to write songs, to start your business, to start your own clothing line, etc.? Even if you are older, do you not believe that God can make up the time you may have lost? Oh yes He can! He’s GOD!!!

There are people out there who need you! Yes, YOU! They need to hear YOUR testimony! They need to hear YOUR music! God has a people waiting for YOU who will gladly support YOUR business and buy YOUR products. Like Victoria, you just have to trust God to order your footsteps, to bring the right people your way, and to provide you with what you need. Remember this, an extraordinary person settling for an ordinary life will never be fully content!

THE PRAYER OF SALVATION
If you haven’t accepted Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, you can do so right now. I then encourage you to find a good Bible-believing church that will help you grow in your relationship with the Lord.

Romans 10:9 (NIV) says, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”

Please pray the following prayer:

Dear Jesus, I come to You confessing I am a sinner in need of a Savior. I believe You shed Your blood on the cross and died for my sins, were buried and rose again so I could be free! Please forgive me for my sins and the life I have lived. I confess You Jesus as Lord and accept You as my own personal Savior. According to the Word of God, I am now saved! Hallelujah! I AM FREE!

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY OF GOD!!!!!

If you find value in this article, please share.

To subscribe to The Kimberly Joy Blog and receive new articles by email, please leave your email address in the box marked SUBSCRIBE TO BLOG VIA EMAIL provided at the end of the article.

Please follow The Kimberly Joy Show on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube.

You Are EXTRAORDINARY!

(THE KIMBERLY JOY SHOW – Extraordinary: Dare To Be Different)

WHAT DOES EXTRAORDINARY LOOK LIKE?
As a believer in Christ Jesus, who are you? Who does God say you are?

I Peter 2:9 (King James Version) says:

“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvellous light…”

What is the verse stating? God says you are EXTRAORDINARY! Yes, EXTRAORDINARY! What does EXTRAORDINARY mean? What does EXTRAORDINARY look like?

Let me tell you about Victor (I’ve changed his name to protect his identity). I am pleased to say Victor was one of my students during my years as a high school English teacher. Although he’s very successful now, he didn’t always have it easy growing up. Victor, his two brothers and their sister were all raised by a single mother. Because their father was an abusive man, he left her no choice but to take her babies and leave.

As a result, they wound up in the projects with little money. Nevertheless, money means nothing when you don’t have peace of mind or feel safe in your own home!

I’ll never forget one particular incident which occurred while Victor was in college. One morning while getting dressed for work, I heard a channel 9 news reporter say that a man from Cincinnati was lying in a hospital bed with a serious gunshot wound which he had given himself after killing his ex-girlfriend. He soon died. Later that day, some of my colleagues informed me that the same man I had heard about on the news was Victor’s dad. Yes, he was the same man his mother had escaped from years before!

While Victor was a student in my classroom, he would sometimes talk to me about his aspirations. He even talked about how angry he used to be because of his father. Although he had always been an A and B student, because of the hurt and anger he held, he often got into fights at school which resulted in suspensions. Fortunately around the age of 14 or 15, Victor decided that enough is enough! No more anger! No more fights! No more school suspensions!

Why did Victor make this decision? First of all, he was tired! He was tired of fighting, of getting into trouble and of worrying his mother! Secondly, somehow he knew within himself that he was EXTRAORDINARY. He could be anything he wanted to be, but he had to change his attitude. I believe he heard the voice of God. In his (as Oprah Winfrey likes to call) “aha moment”, he realized he didn’t have to allow the abuse and abandonment of his father to define who he was and who he would become. So, he let go of the anger, adopted a new mindset, and dared to be different! He dared to be different from the person he had been before. He dared to excel in school and on the football field. Moreover, he dared to become a young man of kindness, love, and integrity.

While in college, Victor was named homecoming king and became a lifetime member of the brotherhood of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. If you’re not familiar with the Alphas, it is the first intercollegiate Greek-letter fraternity founded by a group of African-American men in 1906. After graduating, Victor traveled to Japan on a scholarship to study business relations.

Today, Victor is a successful business owner. He regularly gives back to the community and serves as a mentor and role model for young African-American males. And did I mention he is only 30 years old?

HOW DO YOU DISCOVER THE PERSON YOU REALLY ARE?
As a child of God, you are not like everyone else. Have you ever noticed that you don’t always seem to fit in? Perhaps you have even found yourself being a loner because no one seems to get you. But, you don’t have to worry because GOD gets you! After all, He made you who you are, and no matter how hard you try, you just don’t fit in with the crowd. I completely understand! There were times when I, too, tried to fit in. I wanted to be accepted by my peers. Needless to say, in those moments, I felt like a fish out of water. I wasn’t being true to me! I was only pretending.

God doesn’t want me pretending. God doesn’t want YOU pretending. He wants you to be true to the person He has created you to be. Who is that, you ask? As you spend time with God, you discover the person you really are. You discover what you like and don’t like.

You discover your gifts, talents, and skills. As you study the scriptures, you come to realize that you are indeed EXTRAORDINARY. Again, I Peter 2:9 (KJV) says:

“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of Him who hath called you out of darkness into His marvellous light…”

As the verse says, you have been hand-picked by God. God has used people to pray for you and minister to you because He chose you!
You are royalty! You are priests! During the Old Testament times, the priests were the ones who went before God on behalf of others. However, as believers in Christ, you have the distinct privilege of going to God for yourself. You are also holy (sanctified, set apart to be used for God’s glory). Furthermore, you are special and unique. You are not the person you were before Jesus saved you. You are now new! You are EXTRAORDINARY!

I encourage you to live as someone EXTRAORDINARY! Don’t settle for less. Don’t settle for mediocrity. Like Victor, don’t allow your past, your present circumstances or even your family to determine the person you will become! Please know that you serve an EXTRAORDINARY God who has EXTRAORDINARY blessings in store for you!

THE PRAYER OF SALVATION
If you haven’t accepted Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior, you can do so right now. I then encourage you to find a good Bible-believing church that will help you grow in your relationship with the Lord.

Romans 10:9 (NIV) says, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”

Please pray the following prayer:

Dear Jesus, I come to You confessing I am a sinner in need of a Savior. I believe You shed Your blood on the cross and died for my sins, were buried and rose again so I could be free! Please forgive me for my sins and the life I have lived. I confess You Jesus as Lord and accept You as my own personal Savior. According to the Word of God, I am now saved! Hallelujah! I AM FREE!

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY OF GOD!!!!!

If you find value in this article, please share.

To subscribe to The Kimberly Joy Blog and receive new articles by email, please leave your email address in the box marked SUBSCRIBE TO BLOG VIA EMAIL provided at the end of the article.

For daily inspiration, please follow The Kimberly Joy Show on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Reaping the Consequences of What You Speak

HOW MIGHT YOU REAP THE CONSEQUENCES OF WHAT YOU SPEAK?
As I shared in my previous article “A Flame of Fire: The Power of Words,” God designed words to carry power or authority. When we read the first chapter of Genesis, we see that God spoke things into existence. He then gave Adam authority to speak when He instructed him to name all the animals. Therefore, just like Adam was given authority to speak, we too have been given authority. Proverbs 18:21 (New Living Translation) says:

“The tongue can bring death or life; those who love to talk will reap the consequences.”

Wow! That’s a strong statement. We reap the consequences of what we speak! For instance, people either achieve greatness or fail to ever achieve because of words. Some children excel in school, and then later flunk out of high school because of words. Many choose to live their lives to the fullest, while some see suicide as their only option because of WORDS!

“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me,” is a quote I heard often as a child and even quoted myself. Although I understand the message the originator was trying to convey, simply reciting what seemed to be a catchy phrase didn’t stop the pain certain words caused me.

I wrote an article last year for my blog entitled “Why Can’t I Be Beautiful?” In the article I discuss how certain words caused me to feel ugly as a teenager. The boy who called me ugly didn’t throw sticks and stones to break my bones or put his hands on me at all. I remained physically intact, but mentally and emotionally I was a mess! I was humiliated and felt alone because no one sitting with us in the school cafeteria on that particular day came to my aid. Even though nobody laughed at his hurtful comments, they didn’t try to defend me either. So, I assumed they agreed with everything he said, which only made me feel worse. Although that was the only time he ever insulted me, his words stayed with me for years to come.

HOW CAN YOU MOVE PAST HURTFUL WORDS?
That young man’s words were powerful enough to knock me down, but his words couldn’t destroy me! Why not? I have family and friends who have always loved and encouraged me. Most importantly, I have a relationship with God, and my Heavenly Father loves me with an everlasting love! While I was still in high school, God began directing me to His Word and teaching me how to cast down the words of hate and embrace His words of love! So, I now know that God’s Word and the words of life I choose to speak can overpower and annihilate all lies of the enemy!

As a matter of fact, God wants us to speak His Word in every area of our lives and in every situation. God’s Word gives us life, hope, encouragement, instruction, guidance, and so much more.
Do you realize that you believe what you speak and you live what you believe? If I believe I am a failure then I’m going to talk like a failure and throughout my life I will continue to fail. On the other hand, if I believe I am a success, then I will speak like a person who is successful and will encounter successes along the way. However, it doesn’t mean everything will always go well. Facing disappointments from time to time is part of the human experience. Nevertheless, how and how soon we move past the disappointments are contingent on the words we speak. In the midst of trouble, heartache, and pain, we should still speak God’s Word! We should still speak words of life!

WHAT IS THE BEST USE OF OUR WORDS?
As children of God, not only should we be mindful of how we speak concerning ourselves, we must be mindful of how we speak concerning others. In my article “A Flame of Fire: The Power of Words,” I mentioned how a number of Christians were insulting a particular pastor all over social media because they didn’t agree with how he handled the hurricane situation in Houston. Personally speaking, I don’t believe God was pleased with what was being said about this gentleman. James 3:9-10 (NLT) say:

“9 Sometimes [the tongue] praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes [the tongue] curses those who have been made in the image of God.

10 And so blessing and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. Surely, my brothers and sisters, this is not right!”

Whether you and I agree with a particular individual, we must remember that he or she is still God’s child. Even if we’re complaining and criticizing about something that is true, God STILL holds us accountable for our words. If we don’t like what we see or hear, what is the best use of our words? Yep, that’s right…..PRAYER!
Otherwise, we’re only adding fuel to the fire, and God is not getting the glory. Consider the children of Israel in the book of Exodus. As Moses was leading them to the promised land of Canaan, they often complained because things weren’t going their way. As a result of their complaining and disobedience, it took them forty years to reach their destination. Their choice of words delayed the promise!

So, beginning today, I encourage you to really think before you speak. You don’t want YOUR choice of words to delay God’s promises for YOUR life!

THE PRAYER OF SALVATION
If you haven’t accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior, you can do so right now. I then encourage you to find a good Bible-believing church that will help you grow in your relationship with the Lord.

Romans 10:9 (NIV) says, “If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.”

Please pray the following prayer:

Dear Jesus, I come to You confessing I am a sinner in need of a Savior. I believe You shed Your blood on the cross and died for my sins, were buried and rose again so I could be free! Please forgive me for my sins and the life I have lived. I confess You Jesus as Lord and accept You as my own personal Savior. According to the Word of God, I am now saved! Hallelujah! I AM FREE!

WELCOME TO THE FAMILY OF GOD!!!!!

If you find value in this article, please share.

To subscribe to The Kimberly Joy Blog and receive new articles by email, please leave your email address in the box marked SUBSCRIBE TO BLOG VIA EMAIL provided at the end of this article.

For daily inspiration, please follow The Kimberly Joy Show on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Relax! God Is Doing It Now For You! Just Continue In His Work!

RELAX! GOD IS DOING IT NOW FOR YOU! JUST CONTINUE IN HIS WORK!
Sunday, May 14th is Mother’s Day, the time of year when mothers everywhere are to be celebrated. Although I personally am not a mother, I truly appreciate Mother’s Day because of my own mother. Throughout my life she has proven how much she loves my brother and me. So, I try to express my appreciation for her as often as possible.

According to Exodus 20:12 and Ephesians 6:2, God expects us to honor our fathers AND mothers. If we’re not careful, we can get so caught up in our own affairs, that we neglect to do so. However, a mother’s role should be appreciated and cherished. And I’m not just talking about birth mothers, but ALL mothers God has placed in our lives—–adoptive mothers, foster mothers, godmothers, grandmothers, aunts, big sisters, cousins, teachers, coaches, mentors, the mothers in the neighborhood who always looked out for us while we were growing up, and spiritual mothers who have prayed for us, encouraged us and taught us valuable life lessons.

Mothers have a rewarding, but tough job, and, therefore, need our prayers, support, and encouragement. So, I personally want to extend a word of encouragement to all mothers to RELAX because God is doing it now for you! In the meantime, He wants you to continue in His work.

DON’T WORRY
Philippians 4:6-7 say:

“6 Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

Verse 6 says to “be careful for nothing”. In other words, just relax! Just rest in God! Don’t be anxious about ANYTHING! You’re not to have any worries or concerns. Although that may seem easier said than done, God doesn’t want you worrying or being concerned about things that are out of your control. To “worry” is to feel uneasy or troubled. Basically, you’re overthinking about what MIGHT happen.

In my honest opinion, as women, we THINK we’re supposed to worry, especially when it comes to our families. If we don’t worry, or if we’re not constantly thinking about a particular issue, then that means we don’t care. But, that’s not true! Don’t allow satan to trick you into thinking that if you’re not stressing out about something, even your own children, then you don’t care. A caring woman understands that she can’t do anything without God. If she doesn’t take care of herself, too, then she won’t be any good for anyone.

According to physicians, worrying can have negative effects on your health. For example, it can cause headaches (I know that first-hand).

It can cause ulcers or other stomach problems. Worrying can cause you to overeat or under-eat. It can cause you to lose sleep. It can lead to the abuse of alcohol and drugs. Worrying can also affect your blood pressure and even your heart.

GIVE IT TO GOD AND MOVE ON
God doesn’t intend for you to be weighed down by ANYTHING! I Peter 5:7 says:

“Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you.”

God wants you to give ALL your worries and concerns to Him because He loves you. God knows that things happen. He is aware that situations arise that may overwhelm you. However, that’s what He’s there for. God is available to be your guide, comforter, listening ear, and support.

How do you give a concern or worry to God? After you go to God in prayer about a particular situation or person, praise Him in advance for the victory and move on! Yes, MOVE ON!

God will either handle the situation for you, or He will give you instructions on how to proceed. You can’t pray and then continue worrying! You can’t keep thinking about it…..and thinking about it…..and thinking…..and thinking…..and thinking! Those anxious thoughts you continue to entertain may very well prevent you from truly hearing God’s voice. In essence, you may wind up following your own mind instead of following God, which is the last thing you want to do! II Samuel 22:31a assures us that God’s way is PERFECT. God’s way is complete and flawless, nothing missing, nothing broken.

FOCUS ON THE WORK
Again, women of God, just relax! God is doing it NOW for you! God has that situation worked out! In the meantime, just continue in His work!

Let me tell you a story about a woman named Ruth. Perhaps, you’re familiar with her story.

Following the death of her husband and brother-in-law, Ruth recognized that her next purpose in life was to care for her mother-in-law Naomi. She willingly walked away from everything and everyone she knew, to answer God’s call. Even though Naomi tried to persuade Ruth to go back to her mother’s house like her other daughter-in-law Orpah had done, Ruth said:

“Don’t ask me to leave you and turn back. Wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people, and your God will be my God. Wherever you die, I will die, and there I will be buried. May the Lord punish me severely if I allow anything but death to separate us!” (Ruth 1:16-17, NIV)

Ruth knew within herself that there was a greater purpose with Naomi, and that is what she focused on. She didn’t worry about her husband being dead. She didn’t worry about not yet having children. She didn’t worry about the family and country she had left behind. Instead, she focused on the work God had given her to do, which was to care for Naomi.

Women of God, I want to encourage you to focus on what God has instructed you to do. People are in need of what God has given you to give them. Whatever God has blessed and enabled you to do, DO IT!!! Don’t lose focus with worries and concerns. Remember that there is a greater purpose at hand. God is holding you (and me) responsible. In John 15:16a, Jesus says:

“Ye have not chosen Me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain…”

God has given you a special work to do that will help others and bring glory to Himself. What is that special work? Is it teaching, preaching, singing, writing, dancing, acting, or having a business? What is it?

And are you fulfilling your God-given purpose? Or are you allowing things and people, you have no control over anyway, to distract you?

Ruth didn’t allow herself to be distracted. Rather, she focused on Naomi. As a result, in due time, God blessed her with everything she needed and desired. He blessed her with a new husband named Boaz, with wealth, and with a son they called Obed. As a matter of fact, Obed later became the grandfather of King David. This is the same lineage through which Jesus was born.

Women of God, I encourage you to rest in God. He knows your wants and needs, and as Matthew 6:33 tells us, He’s going to meet them. All He asks is that you continue in HIS work. Your blessings are on the other side of your obedience.

(The Kimberly Joy Show: Relax! God Is Doing It Now For You! Just Continue In His Work!)

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Naturally Me

 

The day I sat in my hairstylist’s salon chair expressing how I was ready to take a break from braids, ponytails and weaves 2016-08-03 18.05.58marked the day I courageously became NATURALLY ME. If you had told me a few months prior to that moment that I’d be wearing my own naturally textured hair, I would have considered you delusional!

For a good portion of my life, I felt like my hair wasn’t good enough. Have you ever heard the phrase “good hair”? It has been used so extensively in the black community that actor and comedian Chris Rock used it to title his 2009 documentary. Well, no one ever pointed to me while uttering those words! And why would they when my hair was the exact opposite of what was deemed good?

For years I struggled with the notion that I didn’t have long, silky hair. However, by the time I reached adulthood I let the dream of having “good hair” go, choosing instead to embrace and appreciate the hair God had given me. As a part of my growing process, I even joked about having “nappy” hair. I was learning to love me for me…………………… or was I?

I was accepting of  my “nappy” hair as long as I was getting those touch-ups every 4-6 weeks. Yes, I said FOUR! RIDICULOUS! It’s a wonder I still had hair!!! Although I was over the idea of wearing long hair, I still greatly depended on relaxers. FB_IMG_1470261353877-1 Despite the hair breakage, hair shedding and even hair loss I endured, I believed there was no other way! I had a chemical dependency to the ever-popular “creamy crack”!

I quietly entertained thoughts of becoming NATURALLY ME, but fear stifled me. What was I afraid of, you ask? I feared being criticized and ridiculed. And let’s be honest! As human beings, it feels good to be accepted, to receive compliments and have people like you. However, I had to realize that in this imperfect world, some people are just not going to approve of you, no matter what you do!

As I stood in my mirror staring at the TWA (teeny weeny afro) my stylist had just carefully coiffed, I finally was able to recognize my God-given beauty. “Who told you that something was wrong with your hair?” God asked. I didn’t answer. “It wasn’t Me,” He continued. I still didn’t respond. How could I? God was right! He didn’t make a mistake when He created me! Nevertheless, human standards of beauty caused me to believe that I had been cheated. After God finished speaking to me, I immediately repented for all the years I wasted criticizing myself. Ultimately, I wasn’t criticizing me, but My Creator! In that moment I was set free to be NATURALLY ME!!! FB_IMG_1470263697335

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A One-Woman Skit

Early this month, I had the honor of performing a one-woman skit at my church Power and Faith Ministries’ Annual Women’s Conference.  Although it was not the first time I had acted—–even in a skit by myself—–it was the first time I had performed in a skit I created all on my own.

A One Woman Skit Pic1

When my mom asked me to do a skit based on the conference’s theme, “Wise Women Build”, I didn’t hesitate to say yes.  I had already decided that 2016 is the year I am going to branch out and create my own projects.  Once upon a time, maybe even as early as last year, I would have been reluctant, suggesting that my mom write the skit for me.  After all, she had written skits and plays for me in the past.  However, I knew that this time I needed to say yes and accept the challenge!

For many, writing skits and plays comes naturally.  But, for me, not so much!  The challenge wasn’t because I couldn’t do it, but because I had never taken the time to do so.  It was always easier for me to have someone hand me an already completed script.  All I had to do then was concentrate on memorizing the lines and bringing the character to life.

A One Woman Skit Pic2

To write my own script means to reach beyond just learning lines.  I now have to look at the world around me and consider my many encounters along the way, in order to create characters and stories that mimic my experiences and observations.  Although this new challenge was fun, it was also a little scary.

*Will people like my skit?

*Will it be funny or just corny?

*Will it be dramatic enough?

*Will the audience be able to connect with the characters?

*Will it even make sense?

In spite of the questions floating around in my head, I chose to step out on faith in God and in the gift He has given me.

When I first sat down in front of the computer, I asked God to write through me.  And He did just that!  The setting, characters and dialogue came to me at the snap of a finger!  It was exhilarating and liberating!  I was finally creating my own project without struggle.  In fact, I was writing so much, I had to remind myself that I was asked to write a skit, not a four act play!

The night I premiered my skit was the moment of truth, and boy was I nervous!  I wasn’t nervous about acting, but about how well my writing would be received.  Although I believed the script was good with the right amount of humor and drama mixed in, the audience’s reaction would tell the truth!  The response was overwhelming!  They even laughed during what was meant to be the funny moments.  By the end of the church service, I had received much praise from members of the congregation.  Some even suggested that I turn it into a one-woman show (I’ll be working on that soon).  One woman, in particular, said that she was able to relate to the character, while another requested that I perform it at an upcoming conference.

For the past couple of years, God had been telling me to write.  However, due to a lack of confidence and fear of the unknown, I wouldn’t do it.  Needless to say, because of His undying love, God allowed things around me to come to a halt in order to get my attention.  Well God………….You have my attention!!!  And now that I’m writing, there’s no time to stop or even slow down!  Someone, somewhere needs to hear MY story!

 

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I Am a Writer!

I am a writer!  However, for many years I didn’t know it. Early on, writing seemed like a chore. When I attempted to keep a diary like the little girls on television and in my Judy Blume books, I was left with many blank pages.  I just couldn’t make myself jot down my daily happenings.  Instead of “Dear Diary”, for me it was “Dear God”. Why would I share my hopes, dreams, hurts, pain, frustration and even anger with a book?!  It just didn’t make sense.  I had been taught to give my heart to Jesus and to tell Him about anything that’s bothering me. I knelt on the side of my bed, folded my hands, bowed by head, closed my eyes and prayed to Almighty God.  Although I didn’t realize at the time that there was more than one way to pray—like in a prayer journal—I was and am still a writer!

As a child, writing for me was simply writing in complete sentences while using correct grammar, punctuation and sentence structure.  In fact, I was a nerd in that department.  I enjoyed learning grammar and, I especially LOVED diagramming sentences.  What eighth grade student enjoys grammar lessons?! This girl right here!  Although it seems odd, my love for structuring sentences then has helped me to be the writer I am now.  After all, I am a writer!

As an English Education major at Miami University, I began exploring this hidden talent of mine thanks to my “Creative Writing” class. I found myself writing poetry and short stories, and it was fun! The creative writing allowed me to tap into my five senses: sight, smell, hearing, taste, touch. I was learning how to paint a vivid picture with words because I am a writer!

As a former high school English Teacher, it is now my desire and mission to use this God-given talent I failed to recognize before. I look forward to the journey of writing. It is my hope and prayer that my words will help and uplift others, for the world will soon see that I AM A WRITER!

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