Saturday, January 4, 2014

360 Degrees of Beautiful

In January 2013, one of my college friends was trying to get in touch with me. KMarie sent me a Facebook message asking me to give her a call. Outside of social media, I couldn’t remember the last time I’d physically spoken to her. It was probably at her rooftop birthday party a few years ago. Nevertheless, I was excited to catch up with one of the most beautiful people, inside and out, that I’d ever know. However, this conversation wasn’t exactly two old girlfriends catching up. K began to tell me about a fitness challenge that she and one of her friends were launching in just a few days. It would be a 90 day friendly competition among women all over the country who were committed to changing their life. While many people have been aware of my constant struggle with weight, no one had ever really approached me like K did. I was honored that she’d even think of me to be apart of her group and then, I became embarrassed. Had I completely let myself go to the point where K knew I needed some kind of intervention? And it was as if she knew that I’d begun the routine of beating up on myself when K began to congratulate me on all my life accomplishments to date and then said “Candice, I just believe you deserve to be 360 degrees of beautiful.”

Before K said it that January day, aside from my mother, no one had ever called me beautiful. Immediately, it was as if I knew K didn’t mean to call me that and I decided not to take it to heart. I did, however, decide to sign up for her fitness challenge for one reason: because she asked me to and there is nothing I wouldn’t do for her. (Yep, she’s just that amazing.) I was placed in a group comprised, largely, of college friends and Sorors. Many were mothers, educators, businesswomen and fitness enthusiasts- all looking to transform their lives for the better. We created a forum where we could check on each other’s progress, send our daily “Sweat Checks” and keep each other motivated. That group became my lifeline. I was pumped! I was excited! I went hard….at first. And then, my enthusiasm waned. I began to get discouraged because I wasn’t seeing results fast enough. So I quit, I stopped checking in with my group and tried to find ways to avoid having to check in with K, too. I tried to convince myself that I was just too busy to focus on me right now. I tried to tell myself that other people and things needed me more than I did and to take even an hour out for myself was beyond selfish.

However, all that changed over the summer. In 10 weeks, 11 people I knew died- including a dear friend that I’d just talked to the day before and one of my most beloved cousins. I attended 9 funerals in a matter of 2 months. There is something beautifully haunting about death. At the same time you’re mourning the fact that these individuals are gone, you’re also re-evaluating your own life and the choices you’ve made to date. The end of someone’s life can, in many ways, cause you to begin living your own. I made an appointment with a primary care physician to begin to take charge of my life. I met my new physician and confided in her that, regardless of my marital status, I wanted to be a mother within 3 years. I told her I would be 31 this year and I wasn’t interested in high risk pregnancies or being the old mom with the young kids. As only a middle aged Black woman can, my beloved OBGYN kindly told me that nothing about my health said I wanted to be a mother anytime soon. Then, she began to get very clear about what I needed to do to first be healthy for myself and then to ensure the pitter patter of little feet. She gave me the task of losing 10 pounds before my next follow up visit with her.

It was something about being told that I was the only thing in my way that lit a fire underneath me. Like many, I look forward to an amazing career, a wonderful life and someone to share it with. But motherhood? I am not ashamed to say that is my heart’s deepest desire. Yet, according to my doctor’s report, I wasn’t living like I believe I deserved it. So many of us have dreams. It could be to lose weight, go back to school or start a business. But we live like we don’t deserve those dreams. We eat what we want and don’t exercise. We miss application deadlines with no regret. We create every excuse as to why the business will fail before we even get it started. We live like we don’t believe in ourselves. For years, I struggled with my weight and finally resigned that, if I was going to be fat, at least I would be smart. Yet, every time I stepped on the scale or chose the elevator over the stairs, I knew that I wasn’t living my best life. But, part of me believed I didn’t deserve that best life.

I left that office focused and determined to lose that 10 and more. One of my best friends introduced me to Twerk Zumba (yes, church girls twerk!) and I began to pop, lock and drop the weight. Family and friends began to notice a change in me. I recently had coffee with an old friend for my birthday. As she complimented me on my weight loss, I told her about my conversation with KMarie in January, when she told me I deserved 360 degrees of beautiful. I told my old friend that I was beginning to believe it.

Why am I telling you all of this? Maybe you don’t have a friend like KMarie. Maybe your family and friends have been talking so much that you’ve chosen to drown them out. Whatever it may be, please know this: YOU DESERVE TO BE 360 DEGREES OF BEAUTIFUL! Yes, you! You really do! So be it!

Have you made a resolution to lose weight this year? Ignore all the people who make jokes that you’ll forget about the gym by March and get moving!

Have you decided that this will be the year that you’re going back to school? Tune out all the folks who want to remind you of the number of times you’ve stopped and started and go enroll!

Is this the year that you want to get that business off the ground? Don’t let anyone tell you that it can’t be done!

Living our dreams makes us beautiful. It brings brightness into a world that has suffered in the dark. You deserve to be beautiful. You deserve to bring beauty. You deserve to be given beauty. One year later, as I congratulate myself for losing twice what my doctor instructed me and as I grunt through my first week of a new and much more intense exercise program, I am grateful that I listened to my friend and found myself deserving of 360 degrees of good and perfect gifts. This year, may we all find the courage to walk into the beauty that is all around us.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Oh The Joys of Sisterhood

Tonight, Black folk all across the country tuned into the TLC premiere of The Sisterhood, a reality show chronicling the lives of pastors’ wives in Atlanta. The show honestly could have been called Real Housewives of the Church, premiered on Bravo and we’d have been none the wiser. It was ratchet. It was hilarious. It was hilariously ratchet. And I loved every minute of it.

What I found to be equally as funny was the social media commentary. Church folk everywhere were clutching their pearls in disbelief that women so “kingdom minded” could be so vain, “slightly* vulgar and inappropriate. (Said church folk also keep me in the RHOA loop so much so that I don’t even have to watch it and we all have a standing appointment to watch Love and Hip Hop together every Monday night but I digress.)

Yes, it was just something about Sisterhood that got the Saints hot. Could it possibly be….just maybe that Sisterhood is one of the most accurate depictions of the Black Church on television since Thelma and Reuben got married on Amen?

Ratchetness aside, it’s true that the Black Church has made the pastor’s family royalty, for whatever reason. Years ago, the pastor’s wife was not referred to as “First Lady” and her sole income wasn’t attached to that. Growing up, the pastor’s wife was “Mrs. So and So” and she was a teacher, nurse, secretary, baker or seamstress. You knew the pastor’s wife outside of the church. She had an identity. And “PKs” were just that….kids. Sure, their dad was your pastor but they were treated no differently than you were. Today, some pastor’s wives don’t work, are on salary at the church over women’s ministries and one look at Facebook and Instagram photos indicate that today’s PKs live lives of relative “baller” status. They have no (real) jobs and the best clothes and cars. Shoot! I wanna be a PK! It has come to the point where “first families” in the church expect to be treated like THE First Family and many placed justification for First Family Appreciation Days on rocky theological foundation. They call it favor; others might call it foolishness.

Is Sisterhood a hot mess? Yup. Will 53 of this 60-minute show make you cringe? Sure will. Will I still be watching? You betcha. But just like I can’t deny the Soror with the potty mouth and OMG pics because she’s my sister, I can’t deny the stories of these four wives because they’re very much a part of the Church to which I belong.

It goes without saying that this is not the way of every Black church in America. However, most mega and aspiring mega ministry congregations do rock this way- which is why Sisterhood isn’t a far stretch from true reality. And, even still, I want to be clear: not every mega ministry in Black America is depicted in Sisterhood. But more are than aren’t. We can pretend but, unfortunately, we all know at least 3 “first ladies”, whether they’d go on this show or not, whose lives play out a little like this.

In a world where lawsuits are filed against pastors every fifth Sunday, private DM and text messages screenshots between a #DearYoungPreacher and woman at the well are retweeted with wild abandon and church fights make local news, if we want to change what we see on The Sisterhood, we need to change what’s going on in the church, starting with leadership.

See you next Tuesday!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The Transition

Grace and  Peace Be Unto You

My name is Debra Benbow of Winston-Salem, North Carolina. I have been charged by God, released by our mother and given the blessings of my Pastor to share this picture with you.
On November 2, 2010, I lost “the best baby sister in the whole wide world” Darlene Benbow. As difficult as it was to say goodbye, our grief was shortened as the Lord did such a great and marvelous thing for us!

Two hours before ths picture were taken, prophecy was spoken “her (Darlene’s) transition will be like none other seen.” When this photo was captured, we were actually trying to capture the galaxy of stars hovering over the house.
Outside to the naked eye and through the camera viewfinder, we saw this:

Yet when we later looked at the pictures, this is what we captured:

This photograph is undoctored and untouched; the images here were never seen with the naked eye.
The Benbow Family recognizes this beautiful witness is not just for us. This picture of our beloved Darlene’s transition is for the believer and non-believer. My friends, it does not end with our last breath! We are escorted home to our Heavenly Father!

Selah and Amen!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

What An Aunt Taught Her Niece

In the past year, not a day has escaped me where I do not think about my mommy’s baby sister, my Aunt Darlene. Along with my mother and grandmother,  she was one of the most influential women in my life. While I beamed when she told one of her nurses that she actually had three children (my cousins Mark, Reggie and me) instead of two, the truth is my aunt had been helping to mother me for quite some time. And as only a mother can, she taught me lessons about life and loving people that would prove to be some of her greatest gifts to me.

Though she was 24 years older than me, I can remember defending my aunt quite a few times in my childhood. My aunt was, what some would call, “different” and consequently people believed they could take advantage of her. Whether family, friend or foe, I took defending my favorite aunt (a title that had nothing to do with the extra cookies, cake and ice cream I got when I went to her house) with great pride. However, as a kid, I would be confused when the next time my aunt saw that offensive person, she was happy and excited to see them. Did she forget what they said? Surely I didn’t. How could she feed them? How could she help them? How could she be happy to see them after what they did? It was only until this past year that I understood my aunt’s capacity to love people. It was beyond anything that seemed humanly possible. That’s how I knew it was of God. That’s how I knew it was God.

A few years ago, I visited my aunt and she had a Spanish bible. “Ummm what are you doing with that?” I asked her. “Reading it, what you think?” She was quite witty and snappy. “No you aren’t. You don’t even know Spanish.” “Yes I do Candice Marie!!!”  “Now you don’t.” “Oh my goooosh, why you bothering me?!” “Okay then. Prove it.” My aunt took a big sigh, opened her Bible, turned to a passage and said “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” We both erupted in laughter. Even still, I thought my aunt having a Spanish bible made no sense. I knew she had Hispanic neighbors and would attend church services with them. But it would be during the last year of her life that I would truly learn just how impactful my aunt sought to be.

She lived next door to a Hispanic family. They seemed nice; I didn’t interact with them much when I would visit Aunt Darlene and Reggie. I would pass their house often and see my aunt sitting and talking with the mother and my cousin Reggie chasing the kids with water ballons or digging in the dirt with them. My aunt told me that Mrs. Mary, her neighbor was her best friend.  Later we learned that, when they moved there, Mrs. Mary spoke very little English and my aunt offered to teach her English in exchange for Spanish lessons. Mrs. Mary’s children came to know my aunt as their aunt because she would care for them whenever Mrs. Mary and her husband needed additional assistance. For a family of a completely different culture and ethnicity, my aunt provided refuge.

In my aunt’s “difference”, she taught me more about Christ than some sermons or songs. She lived His life. Her love kept no record of wrong against those who would seek to wrong her. Her love was kind to the neighbor who left all things familiar and came to a foreign land. Her love was patient with a neice (and sister) who didn’t seem to get to the movie theatre on time so she could watch the previews. I never saw my Aunt Darlene angry at anyone or heard her say anything harsh in my life. Her life emulated who I want to be- who we all should be- loving, protective, generous and kind.

There are moments I wish I could crawl into my aunt’s bed and watch another episode of Gunsmoke with her. There are times I would give anything for another game of Connect Four or to shop for our matching Christmas Eve pajamas. My heart yearns for another chance to glance over at her from the drivers seat, laughing uncontrollably, because she’s singing the wrong lyrics to yet another song with wild abandon. Most importantly, I wish I could run to her and say “Aunt Darlene I’ve got it! I’m learning how to love right and it’s all thanks to you!” But those moments will not come; instead my life has to be my gratitude. By giving someone Christ every day, I will show that I recognize how unbelievably blessed I am to have been allowed to be known and loved by her. I may never understand why God allowed me to witness her take her last breath but I do know that I learned so much from seeing how she chose to use the many that came before that one. May I continue to grow in amazing grace so that I can offer the world love, the type of love that can change people, until I see her again.
Darlene Lynell Benbow
December 17, 1957 – November 2, 2010

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Occupy the Church

When the "Occupy Wall Street" movement began several weeks ago, there were many who were aloof to its mere existence. I was one of them. I saw the posts on Twitter and on Facebook. I saw it featured on local and national news reports but still had not paid enough attention to the revolution to learn about it. When one of my friends, who is very active in “Occupy Chicago”, expressed his concern that very few African-Americans were engaged in the movement at local and national levels, I had to come clean. Here I am: a PhD student engaged in social activism and completely ignorant to one of the greatest social movements of my time.

So I educated myself and began to see how vital “Occupy Wall Street” is to providing a voice to those who have been disproportionately affected by the current financial crisis. Those who have long since been ignored by corporate businessmen and policymakers were now at their front door demanding they be recognized. As I began to think about the beauty and potential of this movement, I jokingly said to my friend “You can occupy Wall Street. I’ll occupy the Church.”

But why not occupy the Church?

While that is a profound question, a more fundamental one to ask is “Where is Jesus in the midst of this current economic disaster?” Jesus was always engaging the poor; His ministry fundamentally served them. Before He left, He charged His disciples to continue the work He began. Continuing that work is more than a “weeping endures for a night” or “hold on until your change comes” sermon. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ most recent report, the national unemployment rate is 9.1%. However, the unemployment rate for Hispanics is 11.3% and 16% for African-Americans. Continuing the work of Jesus is utilizing every resource available to alleviate the problems concerning “the least of these”. This is why we need to “Occupy the Church”.

When was the last time we experienced a movement that held the Church accountable to its mission of outreach and social justice? With the rate of unemployment climbing and the problems associated with that unemployment continuing to plague minority communities, it is time to demand accountability from our religious institutions. The mission of and mandate on the Christian church is to be like Christ. Those who followed Jesus, and those who did not, never ceased in soliciting assistance from them. And he gave it. His church is to do the same.

So what should “Occupy the Church” look like? While I would love to see every member of inner cities and rural communities journey to the nearest church and find ways to hold them accountable, I believe the movement should be both proactive and reactive. During “Occupy the Church”, there should be:

- A call to discontinue building and capital campaigns that do not meet emergent church safety needs and are not directly related with outreach. A family life center does not constitute outreach. Donating that money to families in jeopardy of foreclosure does. We can no longer afford to celebrate the wealth used to build new edifices when the communities that surround it are impoverished.

- An increase in the benevolence given by a church and the number of people who can receive it. Members are required to be “financially active” before they request financial assistance from some churches. Additionally, many can only request assistance once per calendar year. Given our nation’s current economic condition and the mission of Christ, this movement would see all people helped by God’s house.

- A collective and consistent rally of religious leaders demanding elected officials create opportunities that will return employment to minority communities. We can no longer afford for politicians to file into our sanctuaries to appeal for votes during election cycles but, once elected, use their vote in favor of policies that do not employ or sustain us.

- The critical engagement of young people, and the culture to which they subscribe, that will allow healthy conversation from which the Church can grow. As the Church seeks to fight against the injustices of the poor, it must take every advantage to gain warriors. The strongest voice is that of the youth. Productive conversation can both save a generation and propel a movement.

- An ethnically integrated approach to solving the issues surrounding poverty. The current economic crisis has impacted us all. However, African-American and Hispanic communities have always had less expendable income per household than their White counterparts. It is the responsibility of every Christian to aid their siblings. Inequality continues to polarize but, through authentic faith, we can unite and work effectively together.

“Occupy the Church” does not seek to dilute the importance of the “Occupy Wall Street” movement. It is necessary. However, what “Occupy the Church” will do is extend the reach and impact of the message to those who would be its greatest benefactors. “Occupy Wall Street” seeks to effect change on Main Street. “Occupy the Church” would have its greatest impact on Martin Luther King, Jr. Blvd. “Occupy Wall Street”, though impactful, will never raise questions most pertinent to us and seek to answer them. The issues “Occupy the Church” cannot ignore include:

- Almost half of African-American and Hispanic children live in poverty

- African-American women continue to lead the nation in new HIV/AIDS cases

- The fight against immigration continues to treat our brothers and sisters from across the borders in a way not intended by God

- Judicial sentencing continues to disproportionately affect African-American and Hispanic communities

This movement will not be easy. It will mean many who once had no accountability will be held accountable. It will cause those who profess to be Christ-like to actually become Christ-like. Most importantly, it will ensure that the message of Jesus remains accurate and effective in combating those social injustices that grieve our land. Who knows how long “Occupy Wall Street” will continue? But “Occupy the Church” should remain in effect until the Savior returns.

Weekly, I will raise an “Occupy the Church” issue for discussion on my blog, Selah and Amen: Righteous Critique. Additionally, I will appeal to religious leadership, at both local and national levels, to begin the dialogue in their congregations that will transform their communities. I encourage you to follow me on Twitter @CandiceBenbow and join the conversation #OccupyTheChurch.

©CMB, 2011

Friday, September 16, 2011

5 Ways to Increase Black Church Presence and Impact at HBCUs

The Fall is, indeed, an exciting time of year on any college campus- especially the HBCU. With Freshmen embracing new discovery, Seniors readying themselves for their next steps, and Homecoming festivities, the historically Black college environment creates endless opportunities for transformation and excitement. However, with the increasing incidents of campus violence and the recent deaths of promising students, at Florida A&M University and Bowie State University, many are beginning to question the ability of HBCUs to educate and protect Black America’s future pioneers.

It does not go unchallenged that Black colleges face challenges which seek to undermine its historical legacy and present impact in the global society. Fiscal irresponsibility, academic inconsistencies, customer service complaints, apathetic students and disconnected alumni continue to plague African-American institutions and cause negative perceptions in the community that are diametrically opposed to the missions of the colleges. As we seek find solutions to the complex issues our beloved institutions face, including the engagement of Black religious organizations, specifically the Black Church, is a necessary step.

Both nestled in the African-American community, the Black Church and the HBCU are sister institutions- supplying each other with leaders, thinkers and workers. The vast majority of Black religious leaders are graduates of HBCUs and members of Black Greek Letter Organizations. Black college faculty and staff serve as ushers, choir members, Sunday School teachers and trustees within their congregations. Essentially, the two are one and creating a more intentional relationship can be beneficial to both organizations. Going beyond the traditional “off campus” Black church campus ministry structure, here are five ways African-American congregations can increase their presence (and potential impact) on HBCU campuses:

Financial Assistance to the University

Building funds are just as necessary to HBCUs as they are to Black Churches. Congregations can create a giving campaign that directly benefits their local Black college. This can range from an annual fundraising event, creating an outreach fund to be collected during each service to a special 5th Sunday offering.

Financial Assistance to Students

Federal Aid does not always cover the financial expenses of Black college students. Most have to work full or part time jobs to offset costs, with little to no assistance from their families, who may also be experiencing economic distress. Allowing local students to receive church benevolence can satisfy an outstanding balance and purchase textbooks, food or computers. And a $30 Walmart gift card can go a long way.

“Adopt” a Residence Hall and/or Academic Building

Black churches in a city can be innovative, collaborating with each other to adopt residence halls and academic buildings. Hosting game and movie nights, as well as a variety of seminars, create a social outlet for students. Providing snacks, throughout the semester and during final exam periods, are a great way to show support and encouragement.

Black Church Week

Next to Homecoming, campus organization weeks are sacred times on the HBCU campus. With the introduction of new Greeks, free food and exciting programs, students work hard and look forward to the themed festivities. Black churches can host their own weeks with programming and activities that will appeal to the average student and advance the church’s mission of outreach. Be creative. Just don’t forget the free food!

Sunday Dinner

Whether one attends church services or not- Sunday dinners are a staple in the African-American community, unifying families and creating lasting memories. Black churches can cook or cater dinners for HBCU students to provide them with a much needed sense of home. Not making church attendance the requirement for eating shows the church is commitment to reaching all students, not just those who would participate in activities without incentives.

This does not mean that if Black churches had a greater presence on campus, what happened at Bowie State and FAMU would not have happened. Focused and increased presence does, however, have the ability to change an atmosphere and the people in it. Black churches and Black colleges owe it to each other to be more for each other. So much depends on it.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Day Twitter Picked On The Pastor

A few days ago, Shaun King informed everyone of his intention to step down as pastor of Courageous Church in Atlanta, Georgia. For many, including myself, we saw it as a blow. Courageous represented a breath of fresh air in the American (especially Black) Church System. We were tired of church as usual and, from the outside looking in, Courageous seemed to give an alternative to that. I know I wasn’t alone when I saw Courageous being a national movement, with “churches” everywhere.

I didn’t know who Shaun King was until a few months ago. A friend of mine texted me about a young pastor going off on Twitter, calling another pastor a rapist. I read Shaun’s timeline and was livid, to say the least, and I told him as much. That’s not what we do. That’s not who we are. While I was glad a pastor in Atlanta was FINALLY speaking out about the sexual abuse against children in churches there, I didn’t think he handled it correctly or effectively. Unbeknownst to me, I had a few good friends attending Courageous and they called to tell me about their pastor and the church. Honestly, the more I learned about Shaun King, the more I liked him. He was quirky, he approached ministry in the most radical of ways and it seemed genuine.

But this post isn’t about Shaun King. It’s about the thinly veiled attempts by pastors today, through social mediums, to exalt themselves as true spiritual leaders while, at the same time, discrediting him and his thoughts. More importantly, it’s about how that’s doing absolutely nothing to advance the kingdom and Christ’s mission. In talking with a few of my friends in ministry, many advised me to not write this. One said “Those dudes are treacherous. Be careful.” The sad thing is he was wasn’t talking about mobsters; he was talking about pastors- men and women who lead spiritual and religious congregations. But let’s be honest: the celebrity strand of Black Christian leadership and their minions are cold and unfeeling. But growing up in Winston Salem, North Carolina and the Missionary Baptist Church taught me two things: how to fight in the spiritual and in the natural.

With that said, let’s go.

How does this work exactly? How do you publicly crucify a preacher using your Twitter timeline while privately soliciting sex (from men and women) through your direct messages? Yes #TwitterPastors, the email notifications of your direct messages are flying across the country faster than Airtran. Are they teaching this in seminary? Do they also teach you how to add to your Twitter followership daily while your church members are leaving in droves over your fiscal/spiritual/social/personal irresponsibility? Seriously; what are we doing here?

I said a few weeks ago that today’s Black pastor sees himself as a celebrity while yesterday’s saw himself as a servant. I caught flack for it then. I stand behind it even more today. It’s so very easy to bully from behind HootSuite, TweetDeck or UberSocial. There’s nothing revolutionary about tweeting a Scripture of “correction” from your iPad.

It amazes how vocal pastors are on Twitter today but were mute in regards to the continued sexual objectification of children at the hands of religious leadership a year ago.

I’m in awe how quickly pastors used Twitter to vilify anyone who spoke negatively against the late Pastor Zachery Tims just a few weeks ago but are doing the exact same thing to Shaun King today.

Fascinating, isn’t it, how people can find every Scripture under the sun to demonize someone else’s behavior but can’t find one that will cause them to shut up and work inwardly on themselves?

Is this that “move” and “flow” we’re always talking and tweeting about? Can I step out of it, then?

We can preach these sermons, on Sunday, about ignoring “man” and only listening to the voice of God and doing what He tells us to do but, on Tuesday, we’re using 140 character spaces to mock someone for doing just that. It’s pathetic. I don’t know the specifics of Shaun King’s departure from Courageous Church and I don’t believe what the majority of pastors are saying about it. What I do know is I admire anyone who’d rather freely give financial resources to members and the community than have a cap on the benevolence fund. I tip my hat to any pastor who sees radically changing the conditions of the impoverished as more than just “a string of community service projects”. I applaud anyone who recognizes, when his presence in a place hurts more than it helps, it’s time to go.

But I don’t know if God told Shaun to leave his post at Courageous and it’s not our place to use our personal leadership experiences to answer that. If God did tell him to leave, I am proud that He courageously walked further into His purpose. If He didn’t, God’s forgiveness and grace extends to him like it does us all. But what I do know, what I’m 100% sure of, is that God didn’t tell any of His shepherds to call their follow laborer “immature”, “foolish”, “unwise”, “ridiculous”, “irrational”, “a punk” or “reaping what he sowed”. That I do know.

It is my prayer that one day we all (myself included) can put ego and platform building aside and truly be about our Father’s business.