Saturday, October 19, 2013

Black Bird 2

Not dreaming is what happens when you have near death experiences
Your favorite aunt saved you from one and you both just stood there
Staring
Because you could have died and he wouldn't have stopped
You could have died but she saved you
So you love her even more
But then she dies (at another time)
And you don't cry even long after the funeral because you don't get it
When it finally registers you can't stop crying
And you remember to never forget that you shouldn't dream about the future

One day, you come back to America and it seems great
But then your uncle dies a week later
You see the text and the dm but you roll over and go back to sleep without replying
You call into TERC and act normal because you don't get it
Yours is the family where no one dies
But now they are dying and you don't get it
You cry a lot and know you will never forget not to dream

Then dad decides to kick you out a week after that
Because for the dumbest reason
He thinks you died ("or something") and that you are your sister
And that you and mom are playing a fast one on him
So he kicks you out till you agree to a DNA test
You tell him to go fuck himself and not bother looking for you when he comes to
You check into Motel 6 because you have nowhere to go and need to start living cheap
You move in with some roommates you find on craigslist
Because you don't have credit history to get an apartment
You get so sad it becomes all you have
You pray to God they don't kill you in your sleep
Sometimes, you wish they would

You work as a hostess at a restaurant for two months because no one will hire you
You work at a restaurant to get employment history so someone will hire you
You work at a restaurant and lie to your mother because she is already too sad
And you are sad too
And one of you needs to be a little less sad
So you lie to her
And that makes you even more sad
But she is a little less sad
So it is ok
At this point you know that dreaming is for fools and you are not one

One night, pain stabs you in the guts
You know this is it, you wish your mom had other kids
ER, kidney stones, ovarian cysts, cervical cancer
Biopsies, samples, drips, blood, so much blood
You never tell anyone all that really went down
Not even Chiki
Because you know what it is to be sad and don't want to be the reason they ever feel it
But you get so sad from carrying all that weight that you stop to write
Because everything on your inside is sad
And all that you want to write is about being sad
But that was never why you wanted to write
So you stop towriting
And so you don't write and you don't dream

But then Someone smiles at you
You know He has always loved you and you live for Him
But you shut Him out of this part of your life
The sadness
He keeps smiling and you eventually smile back
You know He knows
And you know it's going to be okay
You've come so far that even you can't believe it
You know He has a hand in it
Because you were too busy being sad and not dreaming to have the life you have now
Eventually, you get two clean test results
And then you get a bigger raise than you asked for and benefits at work
You and dad talk some but it needs time and work
You still get sad but not so much
God loves you and your family loves you and your friends love you
So you start to enjoy forgetting the pain
And you dare to dream about the future

*
I want to work for UNICEF
Or at least work with children in whatever capacity
I want to build a house for my mother and give her whatever she wants
I want to own an early education center
I want to adopt at least one child
I want to work for UNICEF
So help me God


Saturday, September 28, 2013

Propaganda

I was recently told I was too creative, that I wasn’t Christ centered enough
"The peeps we're trying to reach wouldn’t understand your speech"
I told them it was cool...  thanks for your advice
I’m just not afraid of heights
Like Christ wasn’t afraid to mix spit with mud as if he couldn’t fix vision with one word
I’m sorry, I get my creativity from my Father
 
Have you ever been to the aquarium?
Google the coral reef...
Thanks for your advice, I just lost my fear

I'm not afraid of a blank canvas, I'm not afraid to be the canvas
I've been marred in the Potter's hands and God doesn't use erasers
Off on purpose


But what keeps you up at night?
Are you afraid of mid-terms, curfews, budget meetings or board of directors?
I just lost my fear of gravity
Since His majesty came and grabbed me, I've often wondered
How loud does an alarm clock need to be to wake a dead man?

Humbly embrace lessons
Just like you shouldn’t be afraid of city permits and submit to the process
'Cause there is not one city permit that can stop what Elohim permits

I’m so comfortable with sovereignty
So done wasting words, so tired of lying to my Father in the mirror
See, that's where I get my courage from
My spine isn't naturally stainless steel
I guess this statement shook me because honestly, I’m terrified
Terrified of wasting time

But I'm not afraid of their faces
Hearts of men waxed cold, out-your-mind sold
It's the guts to say no then nosedive
Follow commandments that don't make sense
God says learn to walk worthy
And if you really understood the cross you would see that command was such a paradox

I think I understand now
Between heresies and pharisees
Between schemes to get rich and work to attain wealth
This is why I graciously smile
Because truthfully, they are scared

Scared like most of us are
That we're about to waste another weekend
Spend a couple hundred bucks to do the same thing we've been doing
You're scared like I am
 That the best you've ever been and ever will be is so so

You're scared
That you're born eagles walking among chickens
As if these agitated shoulder blades never sprouted wings

I was recently told I was too creative and that shook me to the core
'Cause I have no excuse for fear
I should be roller skating around Saturn, looking down at satellites
Flying
And f you mustered up the bravery you would get this one day

See, I fooled you
This isn't a poem
This right here is a runway
Why aren't you flying?

Why aren't you flying?
Too Creative - Propaganda


This is one of my favorite spoken word poems, it took me forever to type it and then decide on how to edit it so I really hope you guys liked it. I love spoken word poets and how they play with words to make even the most mundane things seem magical. I love it even more when they wax lyrical for Jesus. I've uploaded the video below, be inspired and stay blessed.

Too Creative - Propaganda (Link for mobile readers)
Also check out Counterfeit Gods by Jefferson Bethke

Thursday, July 11, 2013

The3six5NG... again

Remember this post I wrote for the 3six5ng in May? Well, I got invited to share my day again and I did. I hope you guys like it. Oh and if you still haven't written for them I really think you should, it's a great idea and it's enlightening to see how differently everyone puts fingers to keyboards in telling how their days went with a max of 365 words.

  July 11, 2013



My roommate comes in and drops his stuff on the floor but I pretend to still be asleep on the couch because I’m not in the mood to talk. He is a talker this one. When he goes into the kitchen, I quickly check and see that it’s a little past midnight so I know it’s time to get up and study.  After some exaggerated stretches and yawns, I head to my books while he tells me some weird story. I check the time after what seems like a little while and realize that we’ve been talking for over 2 hours, I still haven’t touched my books and I am sleepy again.

At 4:20am, my alarm goes off, so I get out of bed and go to his room to wake him up for suhoor. This takes an unbelievable 10minutes, till I get into his bed and literally kick him down with both feet. He sleeps like a... click me to read the rest of the story



Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Speechless

Will Your grace run out if I let You down?
All I know is how to run

Will You call me child when I tell You lies?
All I know is how to cry

'Cause I am a sinner if it's not one thing it's another
Caught up in words, tangled in lies
You are a Savior and You take brokenness aside 
And make it beautiful
Beautiful!
Brokenness Aside-All Sons & Daughters
.

I am finding the mercy of God right where I am standing
It's binding
It's blinding
It's forgiveness
But most of all
It's mine.
Cab Rides & The Morning After-Alysia Harris

God's grace is charmingly overwhelming. I don't know if that's a thing but words have failed me and "charmingly overwhelming" are the two words that express what I feel right now. No matter what you're going through, how deep in the earth's crust you have fallen or how long you have stagnated, God is only a prayer away. And sometimes, He just shows up because He is God and He loves you.

He will never leave you nor forsake you...

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Black bird

When 2 become more lonely than 1
When cowards with plans collide, lips first
Whipping and slashing one another down
With tongues that have forgotten how to love

You! Sly like a slithering snake
Smooth, pulling on my heart strings
Smiling like death
Ready to kiss it's victim
Armed with words, beauty and charm

But I see you!
You are so low on the ground that
You have never understood what it means to soar

I see you!
This heart, it is mine
These papers, they are mine
These sheets, they belong to me
And you? I don't want you

I see beneath your schemes
You may have had me for a minute
But these wings were made for flying

And so I rise
Strong like an eagle
Soaring, reaching for dreams that will come true
Praying for the grace to forgive
And praying, that God lifts your eyes to His skies
Where help truly comes from.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

These people

"These people are here because they don't have health insurance..."

In November, 2011, I started volunteering at the Bethesda Health Clinic and I was thrilled about it. On Saturdays, the regular staff take off while volunteers (doctors, dentists, nurses, whoever) provide medical care to patients who can't see the doctors and dentists during the week and I found out that my church volunteered sometimes so I signed up to go whenever it was our turn.

The clinic provides affordable medical care to people who work at least 20 hours a week but have no health insurance and only make a certain amount of money. Their co-pay to see the doctor depends on how much they make and it ranges from just $0-25 so to me "these people", bless their hearts, were poor people who needed help and I was happy to give it. Only I didn't realize I thought of them in a condescending manner and little did I know that I had just dug a nice little pit for myself.
One of the kids I watched in the clinic drew this for me
On the table
We kinda got in trouble for it!


In May, 2012, I had my little stint in the ER ( long story ) and when I was getting discharged, the doctor told me to see my regular doctor for follow up and labs. The problem with that was that I didn't have a doctor. I self medicated whenever I got ill, drank gallons of orange juice, slept in, prayed and got better. The proud fool that I am, I started talking to health insurance companies to see if I could buy health insurance but alas, even after monthly payments, I would have to spend $3-5,000 before the insurance picks up the rest of the bill. I don't get benefits at work because I am only full time temp because I go to school full time and can't commit to permanently being the head of a class (another long story).

Anyway, I was talking about my dilemma to my flat-mate when she carelessly went "How about Bethesda? You volunteer there, don't you? You work over 20 hours, you don't have health insurance and it's not like you make 50 bucks an hour". Jah-Jehova-Jireh! 3 days later, I was in the reception hall, waiting to get registered and thinking to myself "na me be dis?". I felt the need to convince everyone who smiled at me that I wasn't poor, I wasn't one of these people, I only came here because I had an emergency. I wasn't poor!

A couple of months later, it looked like I had cancer and this clinic paid for my biopsy and doctor's fee and all I had to churn out was $65.

Today, I volunteered again (I never stopped) but this time it was at the front desk with the receptionist. She is a sweet, old lady who volunteers there even during the week and I heard her refer to the patients once or twice as "these people". It just brought a tear to my eye as I smiled.

I can get health insurance from school for just $10/month
I can ask to become the next head of class at work
Heck, I can even get another job that offers me benefits straight up
But no, I am one of these people
 
These people keep me humble
These people bless me even when I think I am blessing them
I am these people
I am poor
And it is ok
 
Romans 12:3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The3six5NG

The3six5NG is a blog that puts up a post everyday by Nigerians all over the world. It doesn't matter if you're in Ogbomoso or Uzbekistan. If you are Nigerian, you are welcome to sign up for a day and send in your post. The guidelines are on the website, the end of this post will send you there ;) I sent in my entry for today and it was uploaded a few hours ago... Enjoy!





“Grow up” they say, “then you can do whatever you want”.
But no one tells you that when you grow up, life will slap you with 3 ton crosses that will force you to see beauty in the plain and ugly just to distract you from the crackling of your breaking back.
 
Rock!
It has to be a great day. Thursdays, like Mondays, are the days when I drive 35 minutes to work (7am-3pm) then an hour to school (4-6:40) and get home at 7pm to dog pile on my books and dinner in front of the TV.
But I woke up late.
 
Paper!!
I got there 10 minutes late and though my boss said nothing, my pay check will.
One of my kids came up to me and went “Ms. Elizabeth, you know what’s bad? I saw a girl at Chili’s and she had no hair because she was smoking a lot. Smoking does ... click me to read the rest

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Witness:The Inn Keeper (ft. Glynn Young)




 Glynn Young is the author of the novels 'Dancing Priest' and the recently released 'A Light Shining'. I've been following him here on blogger for a while now and his writing and experiences have always been a blessing to me. He posted this version of The Nativity by the Inn Keeper in 2010 and it's been on my mind since then so i finally asked him for the permission to share it with you guys. I realize it's not Christmas but there is something about the way this story is told that it doesn't need a season to be a blessing... especially if you read between the lines. Happy Easter.          





***
 

Yes, I remember them. And don’t look at me that way. You have no idea what it was like. Do you know how many people I had already had to turn away? I could have filled the inn four times over, that’s how many. The town had been packed for days, you couldn’t walk in the streets without stepping on someone, and people were sleeping anywhere they could find. We were all waiting for the Romans to finally come do the census thing, and we all knew what that was about – taxes.

Everybody came knocking, crowds of people, family after family. It was depressing. They’d put the children in front so I could see the big eyes and tears and it was tough to keep saying no room – no room – no room. At first, you’d try to be helpful, you know, and suggest some places that might accept guests, a few people in town were renting out rooms and beds, even porches but you had to be desperate to do that because it was cold. I had people sleeping under tables in the kitchen, yeah, I know what people said, that I’d make a buck any way I could. But it was awful there were so many people. Old, young, the sick, even some people dying, like the Romans were going to milk that cow, I mean, what was the point?

So we did what we could. And feeding them was no picnic, either, let me tell you. Food prices jumped 25 percent in a week. Too many to feed and not enough food to go around. I got a shipment in from Jerusalem and that helped but it cost me dearly, those Jerusalem merchants are a pack of vultures, that’s what they are.

OK, yes, I remember them. She was in childbirth and in a pretty bad way. He was desperate. He begged me for a place, for anything, it’s his time, he kept saying, over and over again. It’s his time. Please, anything, it’s his time. You’d think he was the one having the baby the way he kept saying it’s his time.

I shut the door in his face. And that dirty peasant started banging on the door, shouting at me. They were both filthy from the dust, they’d been traveling for days. What a sight. My woman finally shouted at me to give them the animal stalls, so I told him if you can stand the smell you can stay there.

He ran. He picked her up from the donkey and he ran. He didn’t even ask me how much, not that I could have charged him anything, I mean, sure it was crowded but to sleep with the animals? I’ve got a heart, you know.

I didn’t think anything more about them, until a few hours later. I was exhausted from feeding and serving all the guests, and they were a rude, obnoxious bunch, too, insulting the food my woman cooked, she worked her fingers to the bone and we get what, insults? I told them they could leave if they didn’t like it, that shut them up, you can take it from me.

So I’m asleep and she starts shaking me, wake up, wake up, she said. Something’s going on in the stalls. My first thought was that dirty peasant had lit a fire, yes, I know it was cold but you don’t light a fire in an animal stall. So I grabbed the bucket and ran outside and sure enough there was a glow and I just knew a fire had started so I ran with the bucket,water sloshing over the side, my wife had filled it before we went to bed so she wouldn’t have to fetch in the cold, and what do I see but a crowd, a crowd, and they’re standing there, watching. I was ready to break some heads.

So I push through the crowd and then I see them. They’re in the glow. I don’t know where the glow came from. Above, that’s all I remember.I stood there, stunned. I couldn’t speak. It was the couple and the baby.

And I don’t know how I knew this but I knew, maybe we all knew, this was something like we had never seen before. It was like my head emptied out. I couldn’t think. I couldn’t speak. And if you ever repeat this I’ll deny it, but I’ll tell you confidentially that I cried. I fell to my knees and I cried. And I wasn’t the only one. You should have seen the shepherds. Well, you could have smelled them too, but you should have seen them. On their knees and crying.

The magicians came later. And Herod’s troops after them. That couple left with the baby right before the soldiers arrived, and then the horror, I still can’t talk about it so don’t even think of asking.

But, yes, I saw them and gave them a place to stay. But this business about him being the Messiah, the one they killed in Jerusalem, I know nothing about that. And don't you say I did.

Friday, March 29, 2013

Ninja in disguise

Life teaches you to shut your big mouth!

You gradually learn to love the silence, grow in silence and discover the secrets to silence
How to smile with just your heart, hurt passively, go around like a ninja... unseen and unheard.

You start to think "Maybe, if i stop speaking my mind ever so often, i'll save more friendships", forgetting that one of the many reasons the friends who have stuck around still stick around is that they know they'll always know where they stand with you. But friendships need to be protected.

When you love someone enough, you realize that there are words better left unspoken, feelings better left unexpressed and situations better left unexplained.

I am rediscovering the secrets to silence, and the quiet is deafening.


***
I went to Nigeria for spring break and the week after and it was such a blessing to spend time with family and true friends. I don't need to tell you guys that i had pounded yam every blessed day, do i? Do i?! I'll put up a post with pictures sometime soon.

***
We made bunny hats and went Easter egg hunting yesterday :D I can't pretend to understand the tradition, what rabbits have to do with eggs and what they both have to do with Easter but the kids were nuts in anticipation so Easter egg hunting we went.

Right after making the hats. This is the only pic i can show you, sorry :(
May the Lord bless and keep you, may your love for the resurrected Christ grow stronger each day and may He open your eyes to the things that are truly important. Happy Easter

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Twenty Six

26 years
26 stories
Life is is better than i dreamed of 26 hours ago
 
26 blessings
26 opportunities
Life is not what i thought it was 26 days ago
 
26 cousins
26 hugs
Phone conversations mean more than they did 26 months ago
 
26 finds me
26 loves me
God blessed me with a whole new world 26 years ago
 
I am not where i want to be
But i am not where i used to be
And i am grateful to God
For His continuous presence
 
 Inspired by Twenty four - Switchfoot
****
 
 
Me: Guess how old i'm going to be on Sunday?
Kid A: 14?
Me: No, silly. 26! :D
Kid B: *pointing and laughing* You're ooolllldddd...
Kid A: You know, when you're close to a hundred it means you're going to die soon!
 
***
You can find my Amazon wishlist here , you're welcome. And no, it's never too late to get me a present ;)
 
My girls!
 


Chocolate molten cake from Chili's to me :D
 

No comment.
 I appreciate the love and support i've gotten from everyone of you, i will have to do a thank you post and shame you all with gratitude pretty soon. Stay blessed!