I’ve been hiding, y’all…

Since I’ve been in Atlanta, I’ve been hitting the ground running. Staying focused on why I came back in the first place, which is to pursue a career in media. I’m working on something right now, but I’ll share that another time.

I’ve been real sensitive about people knowing that I’m back in town. You’re probably thinking, “Okay. Then whey are you blogging about it? DUH!” Ya see, I don’t share this blog on Facebook. Facebook to me constitutes the MASSES. Here in my little blog universe, it’s just you guys. I can count on one hand how many people from Facebook are actually followers of this blog. I’m totally okay with that. You’re like the private audience to my life.

Getting back to what I was trying to say earlier…I just didn’t want to run into folk who think I’m crazy for coming out here on FAITH alone. No. I don’t have a job…yet. First thing people typically say when you tell them you relocated is, “Really. So what are you doing? Do you have a job?” and when you say, “Oh…I came on FAITH,” …get ready for “that look”. You know the one..
So I decided that I was gonna hide out (aka not attend church where EVERYBODY will see me) until I land something so my conversation will be equipped with a proper answer to save myself the embarrassment and uneasiness.

Then during a conversation I was having with my niece last night…this happened…
IMG_3346IMG_3347

Y’all, after that conversation and always believing that nothing happens by accident, I said okay, God. Then I woke up early this morning and He had some more to say to me…

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge
crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip
off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin
that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance
the race God has set before us. We do this by keeping
our eyes on Jesus, the champion who initiates and perfects
our faith.” – Hebrews 12:1,2

That basically tells me that if I’m taking these huge leaps of faith, claiming to live my life boldly so people can see how God moves in my life…why the heck am i hiding??? Fearful (keyword being FEAR) of ridicule or as they say these days, “shade” from people??? I’m letting my insecurities block what God wants to do or already has waiting for me on the other side.

Strip away the fear. Forget the possible naysayers. Keep your eyes on the One who has already gone before you, Tash! That’s the ONLY way my mustard seed FAITH will grow to the size of one of those Redwood Forest Trees!

My life is suppose to be a sermon. Hiding my sermon under a bush doesn’t give anyone hope that they can step out on faith too and move forward. Quite honestly, since I’ve been here, He’s been nothing short of amazing…taking care of my EVERY need.

I can’t believe I started out bold and strong only to find myself shrinking back in my shell. NOPE! Not happening. And feel free to hold me accountable guys.

I’m going to attend church this weekend, not because I’m hoping someone will be there with an amazing opportunity, but I want to show God that I will continue to let Him shine through me…no matter where I go in this town.

Now does that mean I want you to share this blog on your Facebook page?   Hmmm…baby steps folks…baby steps. LOL However, I most definitely will be in house of the Lord this weekend.

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Don’t Really Know What To Call This Post…

I’m realizing that the more I blog, as infrequent as it is, the more I keep sharing my spiritual epiphanies. This blog was suppose to be about random stuff, but it keeps getting personal for some reason. *shrugs*

Over the past year, I’ve been looking for a job. Not just a job actually, more like a career opportunity. I already have a job, but it’s not enough to live on and when you got grown woman bills, $10/hr can only go but so far. Recently i got a call from a recruiter from a staffing agencies. After speaking with her last Wednesday, it sounded like this would be a great opportunity. So we set up an appointment to meet on Friday. Well I got up that Friday morning, excited, encouraged and ready to put my best foot forward. I left the house early so I could get there fifteen minutes early and time enough to find the place in Miami. Without going into too much detail (I probably should have vlogged this post) everything that could go wrong…went wrong. I was driving around in circles for 2 hours. My GPS kept sending me the wrong place, which was quite unusual because I NEVER have problems with my GPS…NEVER. I called the office to let them know i was lost and didn’t know where i was. The receptionist tried to help me plugging the cross streets i gave her so she could guide me to the office. Wouldn’t you know her computer shut down right in front of her? In fact, all the computer systems shut down at that very moment. At this point i was sweating bullets and ready to spit flames. I tried my GPS again which only made matters much worse. I was more lost than I was before. I pulled over and called the recruiter to let her know that we should cancel the interview because i couldn’t find the place and i was so angry that I didn’t want to bring that energy to the interview. She was kind and understanding of my dilemma. When I hung up the phone, I cried and screamed so hard. My lungs felt like it was coming out of my chest. After about five minutes of sobbing, i lifted my head only to see a light flashing on my car saying that my tire pressure was low. I got out of the car only to find the right front tire completely to the ground. Now I was on fire. I got back in my car and began screaming and yelling at God. I was so angry at Him. I haven’t been this angry with God since my troubled marriage which was 10 years ago. “WHAT DO YOU WANT?? YOU’RE THE ONE IN CONTROL!!! ARE YOU ENJOYING YOURSELF WATCHING ME GO THROUGH THIS CRAP?!?!??”  To matters even worse, it started raining. A storm was on the way. I’m sitting there like WTF! Eventually two gentlemen pulled over to help me with the tire and although it took me two hours to get back home…i got home safely. 

It took me all weekend to calm down from being angry with God. I’ve heard people say, “Praise Him and thank Him when you’re in the storm”. I’m sorry. I just couldn’t do that nor was i in the mood. It wasn’t until this morning that I thanked Him for what happened on Friday. Now, I didn’t thank Him with glee (just being honest) but I thanked Him with the understanding that He allowed all those obstacles to take place because He didn’t want me to miss out on what’s really waiting for me around the corner or He was preventing me from something that would have destroyed me. I don’t know. Only time will tell. 

As i was on my knees talking to Him this morning about everything and why i felt the way I did, it occurred to me that I have soooooo many resources available to me to “create” my own opportunity. Why am i not doing it? Fear. Laziness. Unmotivated. Then I thought, “Tash, by your allowing fear, laziness and being unmotivated, you quite possibly could be blocking somebody else’s blessing.” I’m so busy focusing on what i want and how i want things to go that i forgot that blessings are not meant to be hoarded. Blessings are to be shared. I’m blessed with amazing gifts and talents (some i haven’t even discovered yet) to help somebody else realize their potential or bless them in some other way. I’m reminded that it’s not about me. I’m on this earth for a purpose that is not JUST about me. 

I always say that “nothing happens by accident”. I was too busy being angry at God over the weekend that I forgot my own mantra. Everything that happened on Friday was not a surprise. He knew. Maybe all of that needed to happen so I could come to the realization this morning that every resource available to me is in front of me and I’m wasting time with it and ultimately blocking somebody’s blessing. I could be waaaaay off base here, but I’ll go with it.  

Boy oh boy…i tell you…this relationship i have with God is so real to me. Just like in any relationship…you get mad, you need to cool off and apologies end up happening. SMH. (sorry…i digress)

I’m not gonna tell you that I’m gonna get off my tail and hop to it because i’ve said that before to myself and i’m still in the same place. I’m just gonna DO. 

He sang to me…

james taylor carole king

Greetings! Yeah…I know it’s been a minute since I’ve posted anything. I’ve been so crazy busy…in a good way though 😉  I’ve had so many good thoughts and epiphanies that I wanted to share these last couple weeks, but I always ended up getting distracted with my busyness and forget. However, this time…I bookmarked this thought in my head and now I’m going to share. YAY!

Typically, when I’m on my way to work, I drive without music. Sometimes it’s just me and my thoughts or sometimes I leave it off in hopes of hearing God speak to me loud and clear.  On this particular day as I was driving my regular route to work, He sang to me. You see I love music…all types for the most part…good music. I know songs that most people would stop and say, “You actually know this???”. Yeah…I’m that chick.

Anyhooo…getting back to the route to work. I was listening to one of the pre-programmed stations on my radio dial. One of my favorite artists, James Taylor came on…”You’ve Got A Friend”. I’ve heard this song for yeaaarrrrrs. Music and words written by the great and talented Carole King and sung by my boy James Taylor…but this time He sang to me.

Any other time I heard this song, I usually just hmmm along or just let it play without really listening to it, but this time as I was singing along loudly, I began for the first time really paying attention to what I was singing…

“When you’re down and troubled and you need a helping hand
and nothing, whoa, nothing is going right.
Close your eyes and think of me and soon I will be there to brighten up even your darkest nights.

You just call out my name, and you know where ever I am
I’ll come running to see you again.
Winter, spring, summer, or fall, all you have to do is call and I’ll be there, yeah, yeah,
you’ve got a friend.

If the sky above you should turn dark and full of clouds
and that old north wind should begin to blow,
keep your head together and call my name out loud.
Soon I will be knocking upon your door.
You just call out my name, and you know where ever I am
I’ll come running to see you again.
Winter, spring, summer, or fall, all you have to do is call and I’ll be there.

Hey, ain’t it good to know that you’ve got a friend? People can be so cold.
They’ll hurt you and desert you. Well, they’ll take your soul if you let them,
oh yeah, but don’t you let them.

You just call out my name, and you know where ever I am
I’ll come running to see you again.
Winter, spring, summer, or fall, all you have to do is call, Lord, I’ll be there, yeah, yeah,
you’ve got a friend. You’ve got a friend.
Ain’t it good to know you’ve got a friend. Ain’t it good to know you’ve got a friend.
Oh, yeah, yeah, you’ve got a friend.”

I don’t know who Carole King was talking about when she wrote that song…I don’t know who James Taylor was singing about when he sung “You’ve Got A Friend”, but I can tell you this, when I heard that song THIS TIME…my friend Jesus was singing to me. Every word explained who He is to me and what He has done for me in every situation described in those lyrics. All I could do was smile really hard after the song went off. Ha! I’m smiling right now as I share this with you. For the rest of the week, I hummed and/or sang that song to myself because to me…He sung that song to me.

I know that if I hit a rough patch in my day or someone disappoints me or things may seem a little out of control…thank God for iTunes 😉 I will NEVER listen to “You’ve Got A Friend” quite the same again. smh

Never Have I Ever…

Natasha Nicole in the studio.A while back, me and my friends would play this game called “The Penny Game”.  Here’s how it worked. We would all get lots and lots of pennies…each of us. So each would have a huge handful. Then we would sit in a circle around a hard surface table with enough space between each other, cut off the lights so that it’s pitch black in the room, and somebody would start with the statement, “Never have I ever…”. If that person says what they’ve “never” did, the person or persons who “have done” would drop a penny on the hard surface table. The fun part is you only hear the pennies dropping, but you don’t know who’s dropping the pennies. It’s a pretty fun game…you should try it. Beware though…because when you start playing this game and as the night grows later, the “Never have I ever” statements start to get pretty racey. LOL! I’m just sayin.

I was sitting in my room the other night just thinking about how my life has been playing out lately.  I realize that there has been a lot of “never have I ever” moments going on lately that I’m actually doing.  It’s been pretty exciting too! Never have I ever been an Entertainment News Correspondent, but I’m doing that. Never have I ever had my own radio show, but I’m doing that. Never have I ever been an MC for a program, but I did that. Never have I ever been asked to speak in front of a large group for a conference, but I’m about to do that in April…I mean the list just keeps growing.  And you what else? I’ve notice as these opportunities have been presenting themselves, I’m excepting them WITHOUT fear. I think that’s awesome!

Here’s the thing, I believe God has been opening these doors for me.  I know I keep talking about Him, but I can’t help myself, He’s the reason why I’m even here and He’s the one who has been guiding my feet on this adventurous path that I’ve been on. I love that because I’m NOT a boring or dull chick…ha! He made me that way. Anyhoooo…getting back to what I was originally trying to say…I don’t embrace these opportunities with fear anymore because I know He has my back.  Also, I know that he has prepared me to take on these challenges and tasks and while I’m doing it, it’s also preparing me for more “never have I ever” stuff. Make sense???  If He’s opening these doors…why should I be afraid? He’s prepared me and He gives me the strength and the know-how to pull it off. Now I do get a little nervous because I want to do my best…and that’s normal. However, once I start…I GO ALL IN! That’s the Master at work in me! Ha!

I always believe that life is meant to be enjoyed, but I also believe that each of us has a purpose. Each of us are on assignment. So whenever you are presented with an opportunity, thank God for it because it is a blessing, but please know that it’s not just about you. God might have personally selected you to make an impact on somebody out there…and that’s what glorifies Him.

So if you and your friends decide to play “The Pennies Game” and somebody says, “Never have I ever helped a child bring their math scores up and boost their confidence”, or “Never have I ever played a part in building a home for a needy family,” or “Never have I ever spoken at a conference and helped influence a stranger to make the right decision about something they were struggling with”…you can drop your pennies and think to yourself…”hmph! I’ve done that or that happened in my life.”

BEAST MODE FAITH!

Hospital Pic_wordpress blogHappy New Year! Yeah I know we’re like in the 3rd week of January, but I had to say it because I haven’t posted since last year. Hehehe

The last two weeks of 2012 for me have been a mixture of great times and a little challenging too. Months prior to December, I made plans to spend Christmas and New Year’s Eve in Atlanta, GA. It was a trip of both business and pleasure. Christmas Eve brought an unwelcoming surprise. My father was experiencing severe abdominal pains. Now for anybody who knows my Dad, he has never been a sickly man and not one to complain about anything…even pain. But when he came to me and said he was in a lot of pain, I immediately put on my clothes and drove him to the emergency room. We were both confident that it was probably something minor like gas or whatever, but that emergency room visit turned into a night observation. I stayed with my Dad and wishing I could take the pain away. I wanted to cancel my plans to go to Atlanta and I would have…if it was just a pleasure trip, but it wasn’t. I really needed to get some business handled that could not be postponed any longer. I tried to move my flight to a later flight, but Spirit Airlines and those ridiculous fees would have left me penniless. So I prayed and asked God to take care of my Daddy. I trusted Him, left my Dad, went home to gather my things and headed to the airport.

I had a wonderful time in Atlanta spending time with my brother and his family, spending time with friends that I love and adore, and I even got my business handled. Through it all I saw God’s hand moving and even in those moments when I began to feel guilty for having fun knowing that my Dad was still in the hospital, God nudged me and said, “No you don’t! Don’t worry. I’m taking care of him just like I promised.”

When I came back home on New Year’s Day, I went home and rested a little and then got up to go see my Dad anticipating that he would possibly be released, but when I saw him my heart sank. He had all kinds of tubes coming out of his body and the one tube we both hate the most is the NG tube (very painful going in and coming out). When i walked in I greeted him with my big smile and stepped out for a moment to cry. I felt so helpless. One of my friends, Byron, sent me a text at that moment and said, “This is God’s problem to handle. Give it to Him. Pray and have faith that He will do what’s best. Period. Have worship and Praise God for His goodness. I’m not joking.” So I wiped my face and I did exactly what he said. I went back into the room with my Dad, I praised God, sang and worshipped. I promise you…after that…my faith took off into beast mode!

My Dad ended up having 3 surgeries in the span of 4 days. He went through a lot, but I made sure everytime he saw me, he saw my smile. Every time he heard my voice, there was joy in it. Every time I whispered in his ear, it was a reminder of who was in charge…our Almighty God.

The night of January 8th, I was experiencing some severe abdominal pain. A pain that was all too familiar from my past. I’ve had intestinal issues since I was an infant and have had 3 major surgeries in my 40 years of living…all because of my tricky intestines. I got scared because I knew the pain all too well and in my mind that meant more surgery which I just had 3 years prior for the same thing…my intestines/bowel obstruction. The pain was too much for me so I called my brother Steve to come get me. We tried some alternative procedures, but the pain was not letting up so we got in the car and headed to emergency…a different hospital from my Dad though.

Here’s what was crazy…Broward General Hospital (ironically where I was born) is ALWAYS packed in the emergency room. But there was only 2 people in there. I was registered and was seen less than 10 minutes. Unheard of…trust me. One nurse attendant came to treat me asked us, “How do you guys get through so quickly?” We told him there were only 3 people in the emgergency room. He said, “Are you sure??? There were tons of people in there. It has been a crazy busy night for us!” Brother and I just looked at each other and shrugged our shoulders.

They took a catscan and when the tests came back…sure enough it was my intestines again. I broke down in tears because I didn’t want to be cut open again and I DIDN’T WANT THAT DREADED NG TUBE IN MY NOSE AND DOWN MY THROAT! IT. IS. PAINFUL! After I came to grips with what was going to happen with the tube, I took my brother’s hand and my faith went into beast mode again. They admitted me and God has been handling EVERYTHING since. I’m still in the hospital right now. They found some other stuff for Him to take care, but I’m not worried…I haven’t been really. God worked it out so that I didn’t need to have surgery again. You see, my intestines were twisted and inflammation was everywhere, but GOD! LOLOL!!! The doctor said the inflammation went down and my intestines untwisted itself. Ha!!! They were also concerned about my kidneys because they found a huge fibroid. I can actually feel that fibroid as I’m typing this blog. Tests came back and the doctor said my kidneys are doing just fine, but they wanna keep an eye on me concerning the largeness of the fibroid so it won’t cause damage to my kidneys. I am not worried about a doggone thing. I know my God will take care of that fibroid too.

I’m happy that all of this happened…even the things going on with my Dad because I was taken to a place of faith where I can say I’ve never been before. It took me to a place of trust in God that I have never been before. Don’t get me wrong…the pain I experienced sucked and seeing my father in that hospital bed had my head spinning, but once I locked my mind and heart into the assurance that God was handling EVERYTHING…I was good. I am good. Daddy is good.

I don’t know who’s reading this. You maybe someone who is not a believer in God or this might be a boost for a believer in God. I can’t force you to take what I’m saying is truth or fact or whatever…I just know that God is amazing and whatever He decides to do from here on in even if I don’t understand it right away…He has shown me in so many ways that I can trust him with my life and the life of those I love the most.

Whether you are a believe or not…I hope this encourages you. Peace and blessings!