Dark and Lovely

As I was browsing online, I came across an article about Lil Kim along with pictures of her “new look.” Like many of you, I didn’t recognize her until I read her name in captions. I was very appalled to see such a drastic transformation in her disposition. Instantly, I began to briefly ponder, “what made her do this?” The real answer may never be revealed but it’s obvious from reading that she struggles with self-esteem. It appears as if she’s in denial but it’s definitely a possibility.

I can recall to my younger days when I struggled with my identity. I was always told I was pretty or beautiful but I didn’t believe it for myself. Although I didn’t consider myself “too dark,” deep within I still was uncomfortable with my skin. Sometimes I even heard, “you’re a pretty little dark girl.” Why the emphasis on dark? Surely I’ve seen darker people. If I were light, white, or mixed would you still say the same?

I honestly don’t know when it was but it probably wasn’t until my late adolescent years that I began to embrace myself. Ok if I’m dark, I’m also going to be lovely. I had to build myself confidently over time. It’s interesting because over time, I gradually transitioned from wishing to be lighter to accepting who God designed me to be.

As I was reading about Lil Kim, I couldn’t help but reflect on the hair product(s) specifically designed for African-American hair, “Dark and Lovely.” On each product, there is a woman pictured on the front. These women appear poised and confident but most of all they are dark and lovely of similar shades. No disrespect in any way to mixed, light, or brown sisters in any way.

No matter who you are or what shade you are, I encourage you to gain boldness and embrace the skin you’re in. As you’ve been reading, you may have said silently, “well I’m dark but how I can I possibly be “lovely.” Psalm 139:14 (English Standard Version) says, “I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well.”

Not only should you thank your Heavenly Creator but your soul should know just how lovely your feel within. So again, my friends be encouraged. Don’t let anyone mock you of your skin. Don’t wish to be lighter because you think you will fit in or be more popular. One of Lil Kim’s reviews is that men from past relationships told her they wished she was lighter. Are you living to please yourself or others? Song of Solomon 1:5a (ESV); “I am very dark, but lovely.” So on today remember be you, be bold, be dark and lovely.

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Silent Answer

Have you ever asked someone a question and you don’t receive a response? You wonder, do I need to repeat it or are they just ignoring me? How about with God? You ever asked him for something and he didn’t respond? Or maybe he did or will respond it’s just not the way you want him too. Recently, I’ve been trying to develop my prayer life to be specific. It’s one thing with praying for something but it’s another thing when you become brave enough to get specific. There’s a lot of specific things I’ve been praying for and I love it when God blows your mind. You’re believing things by faith but then he still blesses you with something unexpectedly.

Here’s a tiny piece of my testimony. I’ve been on my job for a year now and I had been praying for an increase. My pay is nice but who doesn’t want a little extra. Last week I received an email informing my 401K would be changing. I remember reading the email like, “I don’t understand all the details but ok thanks” while smiling. Then literally two days later, my boss says, “oh hey by the way you received a pay increase and will receive it on the next paycheck”. I remember being astonished as well as speechless but of course saying thank you to my boss and thanking the Lord inside.

My prayer had been answered. Even though I was praying for this on a daily basis and believing God it was going to come, I had almost forgotten I was praying about it b/c it hit me by surprise. Instantly, I was reminded of this Scripture. Job 5:9, “He does great things too marvelous to understand. He performs countless miracles”.

The Lord had heard my request and he silently answered me. I’m learning sometimes when God is silent, he is using that time through you to develop your faith as well as strengthen your patience. What are you waiting on God to answer on your behalf?

If you’re believing for a new job, don’t just pray or apply for any job but be specific to God what kind of job you want. The Word says in Hebrews 4:16, “So let us come boldly to the throne of our gracious God, there we will receive his mercy and we will find grace to help us when we need it most”.

Put your faith to action and God will meet you where you are. Be bold, be specific.

 

 

Blessings!!!

Greetings Greatness,

Noticed I greeted you with a strong noun? I looked up the word greatness and according to Merriam-Webster Dictionary online, greatness means, ” exceptionally high quality”. I want that to resonate within you to know that no matter what you have or don’t have you’re greatness regardless. Don’t ever judge your future situation by your “current right now”. Just because you may be feeling down doesn’t mean you have to act down.

Yesterday in church, my pastor preached about better. I couldn’t help to research the word better. Better has many definitions but the one that sticks out is used as a verb and the definition is, ” to improve on or surpass (an existing or previous level or achievement).

How ironic the definition of better is similar to Greatness? So on today, know that whatever you’re going through it HAS to get better. But it will only get better if you believe and keep speaking it in the atmosphere. Job 22:28 (New King James Version) says, “You will also declare a thing, and it will be established for you; so light will shine on your ways”.

So what does this verse mean? Whatever you want, you can have but you must first speak it in the atmosphere. My friend, the declaration starts with YOU first. You want a new job or a promotion, declare it. You want your friendships/relationships restored, declare it. You want a closer relationship  and walk with God, declare it. You want to live a healthy life, declare it. Whatever it is, declare it and will be established. Better things are coming your way once you declare it.

Declare what you want, because you’re GREATNESS!!!!