Girl in the Hood

I’m a girl in the hood tryna make it out. Hoping and Praying to go from my hood to Hollywood. In my hood, we hear gun shots so much that we try to name what gun type was shot. Sick and tired of the murder rate rising everyday. Now days, the victims are mostly women and children. Shits messed up around here. Nothing like when I was a child growing up. In the hood, we have parents who’d rather buy their children true religion clothes rather than a bed to sleep in. Or pay for all the latest sneakers, instead of a tutor when their child is failing in school. Truth be told, a lot of parents and children need therapy to heal from tragic events. The kids can’t even walk to school without a chance of getting snatched and raped. Or their throat slit and body found in an abandoned building. Shits crazy in the hood. Where I’m from, you can’t even go to church without smelling weed on the way there. It’s so many different drugs out now, I can only name a few. Can’t go to work every morning without spotting somebody nod off from being high off dems, lean and perks. Apparently being high is supposedly the new trend around the hood. Shits straight sad man. Big momma’s don’t exists anymore. Hell, the new aged grandmother’s run the streets more than the drug dealers and club hop with their homegirls. Sad to admit, but I’ve seen and heard it all. From kids raising their younger siblings, to the dad next door raping his own daughters, to the young woman sleeping with the married man for money, to the mother who was always getting arrested in the crack house, to the men letting the women be the bread winners in relationships, to kids going to school smelling like pee, to the homeless mother stealing canned goods out the corner store. I’ve seen women take care of their men and neglect their children. I’ve seen mothers work their asses off making minimum wage just to Keep a roof her childrens head. There’s no morals and values in this day and age. In the hood, Men would rather sit at home and play the play station or Xbox and smoke weed all day instead of getting a job to take care of home. I’ve seen the police hop down on black boys for simply being black. I’ve also seen foolish civilians belittle cops and try testing them with their cell phones recording. Knowing damn well these laws ain’t meant to protect us. I’ve seen kids get hit by speeding cars who didn’t stop at the stop sign. I’ve seen so many cars run red lights in the hood it’s ridiculous. The corner gas station had so many shoot outs, folks call it “The Killer Mobile”. I knew it was time for me to get away when that 7 year old got shot there. That did it for me. It happens everywhere but, It’s happening too often in the hood. Where I’m from, all the stores lock up items like Tide, Gain and Dove products due to high theft. The beauty supplies even have alarms on hair. They steal any and everything. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m a single mother of 3, so when they come through with the deals, I’m on it. Times are hard out here and the struggle is real for most of us. I don’t knock most hustles. As long as they’re not hurting anybody. Too often, we can’t even get gas or go to Walgreens to fill a prescription without somebody standing outside asking for change. It’s getting so bad that the sports teams coaches have our children outside on main intersections asking for money to support their team. Back when I was a kid, we did fundraisers to support anything we needed. Nowadays in the hood, they’re teaching the youth early to beg, instead of how to put in the work to earn a dollar. It’s sickening. I understand homelessness is real. But there’s plenty of help out here. Some become so comfortable with being dependant on others. Instead of using the gifts God blessed them with. I’ll drop a few dollars in the bucket of the man whose playing the drum, or the man whose singing. What are we teaching our children in the hood? Adults in their 30’s and 40’s walk around sagging yelling out “crips and bloods”. Knowing damn well they need to be calling on the name Jesus. Bodies are constantly being found of victims who’ve been reported missing for months. In the hood, we protest police brutality against our own people, But we fail to protest and stand up against ourselves when we kill each other. How we gonna expect them to stop killing us when we’re constantly killing one another. They’ll never respect us and take us serious if we don’t. If you ask me, I say they went wrong saying we can’t discipline our children. It’s a difference between spanking and beating. That, the drugs, and absent father homes played roles in destroying our community. In the hood there’s a church on every corner. But there’s also a liquor store on the opposite corner. Only in the hood, will you find the line for the new Jordans wrapped around the corner. But you can walk right up to the building to get in line for the voting polls. Our priorities are so twisted. In the hood, you’ll find a young mother nurturing and catering her son but, neglects and gives her daughter tough love. And because of it, the men are growing up dependant on their women to care for them like mama did. And the women growing up independent, Working full time, being full time mothers, and changing her own tires on her car. Where exactly did we go wrong in the hood. Our mentalities needs to change. I plan on becoming so stable that I can move out the hood. Then come back to create programs for our youth to teach them a different way of life. One that’ll allow them to travel and meet new people. One that’ll motivate them to dream big and make better choices in life. A program that’ll give them access to job trainings in High school, so that it won’t be so hard to find employment when they’re an adult. A program that offers scholarships, independent living programs to teach the youth about adulthood and so much more. But until then, I’m just a girl in the hood tryna make it out.

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Addictions

Addiction is the condition of being physically and mentally dependent on a particular substance, and unable to stop taking it without incurring adverse effects. Synonyms; dependency, habit, problem

Have you ever had an addiction? I mean the kind of addiction that seems impossible to break? The ones that begins to destroy your life? The ones that destroy families? The ones that cause you to think about nothing but the addiction itself? The ones that are hard for your family members to accept? The ones that cause you to do any and everything to feed it. No matter who or what it affects. Addictions take control of your mind. Are addictions really a mental thing? If so, why are they so hard to break and rid? Is it human nature for us to experience addictions? Why is addiction so powerful? We often see commercials or ads about drug addiction and interventions about alcohol abusers. But what about the other addictions we don’t quite recognize to be addictions? Just to name a few, those like money addictions, love addictions, pain addictions, disappointment addiction, being in control, people addictions, or Struggle addictions?

Sometimes we get so tied up with having money that we don’t care where it comes from or what we have to do to get it. We don’t even think about who we hurt in the process of us getting money. Like the drug dealer serving his best friend’s mother or daughter. But are selfish because they would lose all respect for someone if they helped by feeding their family addictions and bad habits. Or maybe someone owed them a large amount of money, and the cost of what they owed them equaled to their life. Because money controlled their minds and their world. Or maybe the mother who just simply wasn’t making ends meet with her job. So she decided to start stripping to care for her 5 children. Not knowing that the lifestyle would lead her down a path to drugs and multiple sex partner causing diseases, and an abusive man. Now the children are worse off than before. And now the mother is losing her mind and her soul all for the sake of fast cash. Is it easy to walk away from money to have a piece of mind without relapsing?

Sometimes we become addicted to the way someone has loved us in the past that we stick around even when the love we received is long gone. Somehow we put our faith in them to believe that one day they’ll come back around and love us the way they once did. So we hold on to old memories hoping for a change. And instead of letting go, We settle for a small portion of love, knowing we truly desire and deserve so much more. We lose our self worth inithe process. Or maybe that child who had faith that they’re mom would get clean from drug addiction, so they held on to the love they received many years ago hoping for the chance to feel it again. It’s so much easier to hold on than to let go. Or at least that’s what she tells herself with the faith that her mom will love her again the way she once did. Is it easier to let go or to hold on? Are we damaging ourselves by holding onto what once was and will never be again?

Sometimes, we may be addicted to pain because it’s all we’ve known in our lifetime. So it becomes our comfort zone. Not knowing that there’s a better feeling outside the 4 walls of hurt and pain. We’ve never been introduced to anything better, so our security is in the only thing that we’ve ever experienced. We’re afraid to step out and try something different due to the negative thoughts of being uncomfortable. Not knowing that being uncomfortable is exactly what we need in order to grow and overcome the only thing we have known. We become so addicted to the pain to where to pain becomes numb to us. We allow people to hurt us because we don’t know what it’s like for anyone to love us. Is it common to always being susceptible to getting hurt?

At times, we enter seasons of disappointment. And in this season no matter which way we turn, doors are constantly being slammed in our faces. Whether it’s the door of many job opportunities hoping to get a job to get on your feet again. Or if it’s the door of “so called” loved ones telling you “No” when your’re seeking help to do better. Or maybe the church home you’ve known all your life slamming the door in your face because you went astray and they no longer accepts you. How can this be if the Lord says come as you are? Or you may be addicted to calling or texting an ex who is no good for you because you’re not ready to move on. And they constantly send you to voicemail or ignore your texts. But somehow you keep getting the urge to reach out to them. It’s situations like these that causes us to never let our guards down. These are instances that cause us to not trust anyone. But we get so used to the feeling of being let down that eventually it becomes second nature to us. How do we break this repetitive cycle of this feeling?

Other times, we may become addicted to being in control. Maybe we accepted a higher position at a company that we prayed and prayed for. And the moment God blesses us, we lose our humbleness and become controlling and arrogant. We become addicted to controlling everyone and everything that we lose all humility we had before accepting the position. To the point that we forget who we are and what we stood for. To the point that nobody desires to be in our presence anymore. We lose ourselves so much that we don’t even have self control anymore. And others begin to question our authority to lead them in the right direction.Or maybe your’e controlling in your marriage or your children’s lives to the point that they despise you and become everything your’e against. Or maybe you have the controlling addiction that always want to win no matter what great lengths and sacrifices you have to take to achieve it. How do we rid ourselves of the need to always be in control?

Is it possible to become addicted to people? Like always being in their presence. Never alone. Whether it’s good company or bad. Whether they feed your energy or drain it. To avoid the feeling of loneliness. We go to clubs and gatherings just to be affiliated with others. Even those who aren’t truly for us. We even go around crowds or groups of those who makes us uncomfortable. But we want to feel accepted so bad that we try to blend in with any crowd, even those we know we don’t belong in. And soon enough we begin doing the things they do. And saying the phrases they say. All because we wanna feel accepted. And we hate the feeling of being lonely.  Or maybe we want to prove our loyalty to others. Is it true that you are who you surround yourself with? Or is it just mental? Why are we so afraid of being by ourselves? Even if it’s for our own good.

Believe it or not, we can become addicted to struggling. We’ve struggled so long that we don’t believe we can do better. We became content with our situation. We became so comfortable with being needy. We didn’t think our talents and gifts would ever get noticed, so we stopped using them. And like they say, “If you don’t use it; you lose it”. We give up on ourselves. On our hopes, dreams and aspirations we once had. We adapt to struggle and lose the fight and will power to do better. And often times, when better comes along, we pass up on it because we have found our peace in the struggle and adapted to the llifestyle. We don’t want to feel uncomfortable trying something different. We get so caught up in worrying about the worst than could happen. We look at the glass as half empty instead of half full. We’ve been in the struggle so long we began to make our homes and live in it. Why is it so hard for us to do different to better ourselves? So is this in fact an addiction?

I’ve learned many years ago that it all starts inside the mind. You must want change in order to change. No one can want it for you more than you want it for yourself. No matter what the addiction or situation is. You can break the repetitive cycle of anything if you truly put your mind to it. It requires a lot of focus, discipline, and prayer. Some may require more help than others. Some may require help from professionals and specialists. You can break any habit or start any new one in 21 consecutive days. You must take it 1 day at a time and truly be dedicated. Substitute the addiction for something positive in the meantime while taking your focus off that addiction. If you can go 1 day, then surely you can go 3 days. After 3 days try 7 days. If you can go 7 days, you can most definitely go 14 days. After 14 days, you only have 7 days left. After 21 days you won’t even have the strong urge to do that thing that was taking over your mind and your life. Now will the urge ever come back? Indeed it will. But you’ll have the power to fight it. We have all been addicted to something at least once during our lifetime. That’s why it’s not good to judge anyone because the tables could surely turn in an instance. As long as you have Strength, courage, and will power you can defeat any addictions that may come your way. Staying Focused is the Key.

Who Am I?

Who Am I? That’s a question that I often find myself asking. I’m not ashamed to admit that I’m not exactly sure of the answer. I often analyze my life searching for the answer. As of this moment, I’ve decided to live and walk in my truth! I am a woman, I’m a mother, I’m a daughter, I’m a friend, I’m a sister, I’m a niece, I’m a cousin, I’m a student, I’m a teacher, I’m a supervisor, I’m a nurse, I’m a counselor, I’m a secretary, I’m a writer, I’m an over thinker, I’m an advocate, I’m a dreamer, I’m a foster child, I’m a product of physical, emotional, and sexual child abuse. I’m a product of child abandonment, I’ve made hundreds of mistakes, I’m a woman who once desired acceptance, But God chose me to stand out rather than blend in. I’m a woman in the world but not of the world. But at times, I find myself living in fear. With anxiety of what others think of me. I’m an over comer, I’m victorious, I’m a believer. But at times I find myself lost in this cruel wicked world. I worked with children. Mostly those of who remind me of myself as a child. I desire to be a motivational speaker and an author some day. I desire to go back to school. I’m a witness, I’m anointed, I’m Holy ghost filled. But at times, I backslide because my flesh overtakes my spirit. I’m a mother who has faced financial struggle often. Sacrifice is second nature to me. As a child in the foster care system, I went 3 years without heat and hot water in Chicago. My caseworker didn’t report it because he was too busy sleeping with my caregiver. I went through puberty without essential sanitary needs, like deodorant and pads. I was talked about as a child because of my hygiene. I remember living in Chicago, for years, the only hot meal I recieved was from school. I was looked down on and mistreated. I’ve been shunned by the people I loved the most. I’ve told my hopes and dreams to those I trusted in and they laughed in my face and told me to get a grip on life. They told me I was dreaming too big and a girl like me could never make it. I was told that I would be nothing but a crack head like my mother. And it’s funny how life works, because as the years went by, that same person turned out exactly like my mother. I Know God has a high call on my life. Truth is, I’ve had to sacrifice my meals at times in order for my children to not be hungry. Though I’ve had food stamps, I can recall a time where I had to sell some to pay my light bill and purchase necessities for my children. I only watch the news a few times a month due to negativity and depressing energy entering into my spirit. I have to protect my spirit at all costs. Even if it includes going into complete solitude from everyone and everything. Often times, I find myself closed off from everyone except God. I often find myself praying for the people in the world. Whether it’s the mailman, or the judge, or the prisoner, or the racist hearts, or children who are orphans, or the bully or the doctor, or the hungry, or the homeless, or the president, or my neighbors, or the clerk at the local family dollar, or the patient at the clinic, or the sister whose battling generational demons that she knows nothing about. Or the prostitutes walking down Martin Luther King, Or the drug addict, or the alcoholic, or those battling with mental health, or cancer, or diabetes, or even those like myself who often fight the battle between my flesh and my spirit. I am a Godly woman. I love nature, trees, flowers, waters, animals, walks in the park. It brings me peace. I hold doors for not only the elderly, but the youth also. I give the elderly a helping hand even when they don’t ask. I smile, greet and complement the shoppers at Dollar Tree just to lift one’s spirits. I’m still not exactly sure who I am, but I’m learning daily. I’m far from perfect, but I strive to be more like Jesus every day. Indeed it’s a struggle. But I decline invitations to club parties, and certain events that don’t quite align with my spirit. I’d rather sit at home and watch a Sarah Jakes Roberts sermon, or Listen to Devon Franklin, or Smokie Norful or Yolanda Adams. I’m in a season in my life that disqualifies me from hanging out with everyone. Whether they’re lifetime friends, or my closest family members, or my favorite coworkers. I just can’t afford to go in a direction that God isn’t leading me into. I have anxiety attacks worried about my health and what the doctor report says. But deep down inside, I know God wouldn’t allow me to go into a situation that he wouldn’t bring me out of. I’m learning more scriptures and I try to focus on living by the word. I smile more, I encourage the discouraged, I often feed the hungry and clothed the naked. I try to love the motherless child, for I too was a motherless child. I try to discipline myself as well as my children in areas that we’re weak. Sometimes my vision is blurry, But I pray and ask the Lord to direct my pathway. And he Always leads me from going astray. I always stand up for what I believe in. And because of it, I am hated by some. I’ve lost close relationships due to me standing for what I believe in. I almost lost my mind before BUT GOD kept me. Now does this sum up who I am? Absolutely not, because God is still working on me and designing me to be who I was created to be.

Seeking Revenge

Why is it that when someone wrongs us, we naturally want revenge? Is it because of the hurt, or the pain, or the abuse, or the betrayals they’ve bestowed upon us? We want them to feel the way they made us feel. We want them to suffer exactly how we did. We want them bitter exactly how we were. But what ever happened to forgiveness? Forgiveness brings us peace. When we forgive, it’s for our own good. Not for those who wronged us. Although, when we forgive, we never forget what we’ve been through or the feelings we felt. But when you truly forgive others the way God forgives us, He gives us discernment to look at our trespassers differently. Like maybe they wronged us because they were mentally unstable and broken at the moment. Or maybe they’ve been through so much in their life, that they became cold and numb to the things and the people of the world. Or maybe it’s because they were always the outcast who no one ever understood, so they were always rejected and treated differently. Or maybe it’s because they needed help within and didn’t know how to express themselves. Or maybe it’s because they lost the only person in the world who they confided in. Or maybe they divorced their longtime lover and parent to their children and they’re broken.Or maybe they were fired from a job they worked faithfully for 15 years all because they’re child was sick and they had no babysitter so they’re outraged. We have all mistreated and have been mistreated. He without sin cast the first stone. When you carry the weight of the world on your shoulders, you understand what it’s like to become mentally unstable. We understand how easy it is to get out of character for even a brief moment. We understand what it’s like to hurt a loved one unintentionally. We understand what it’s like to disappoint someone when something completely out of our control causes us to break a promise. We understand what it’s like to express our anger, even towards those who had absolutely nothing to do with the cause of our emotions. We understand what it’s like to be there for everyone and no one there for us in our time of need. We know and understand all too well what it’s like to break the hearts of a loved one in their time of need. So we know what it’s like to be on the giving end and the recieving end. And yet, we wanted forgiveness for our wrongdoings. And God won’t forgive us until we’ve forgiven our neighbors. And when you begin to build a solid relationship with God, he begins to reveal to you that the people who hurt you were more hurt and broken than they made you feel. When God reveals to you certain things about certain people, it’s not for you to talk negatively about their flaws and downfalls. But it’s because he trusts you with the information he’s provided you with to take to your prayer closet and go to war on behalf of even those who we initially desired to seek revenge upon. He gives you clarity that they also need him the same way we need him. And when God gives you an assignment, you will either be obedient or defiant. He won’t give you anything to do that isn’t for the glory of the Kingdom. All things work together for the good of those who love the Lord and are called according to his purpose! He knows that the enemy is here to kill, steal, and destroy. And the first thing he’s attacking is the “mind”. The mind ultimately controls everything. Not only does it control our thoughts and feelings, but it also controls the activity of our limbs. We can’t even scratch an itch without our brain telling the fingers where to scratch. Once the enemy gets your mind, he can control everything you do. But just because the enemy can get your mind doesn’t mean he can keep it. There is nothing God can’t restore. When someone wrongs you, take it to the Lord. Cry out humbly to the father with humility. “Vengeance is mine thus said the Lord”. No deed good or bad will go without reward or punishment. Don’t place matters into your own hands. We can live day in and day out contemplating on how we’ll get those who wronged us back. But it won’t help the situation, it’ll only hurt us more than we were before. Instead, pray a selfless prayer for them. like we needed someone to do for us at one point. Pray, Let go, and Let God do the rest. He may not give vengeance when we want, but he’ll definitely do it in his right timing. When we focus and direct our time and energy on someone whose done us wrong, we’re giving them the power. Power over our minds. it’s easier said than done. So Pray about it as often as you think about it. Redirect your attention to everything that’s going right in your life and you won’t have time to worry about what’s going wrong. Count your blessings. And you’ll see that all of your good days outweigh the bad days. Count it all joy. And remember, God’s grace is sufficient and his mercy is everlasting. There comes a time in all of our lives when we need them both.

Lonesome

Have you ever been so lonely, that you settled for someone who couldn’t fulfill your emotional and mental well being? Often times, it feels like losing someone close and dear to us. The feeling is unbearable. It makes you wanna go out to search and find someone to fulfill your emptiness. It’s not that they don’t love you. They just don’t comprehend “how” to love you. When all you want is support during trying times. Or a shoulder to cry on. Or an ear to listen. Or a warm hug. Or the right words of wisdom and encouragement for comfort and peace. Not only is there a voided emptiness there. But there’s also a heaviness in your chest that just won’t go away. No matter how many times you’ve  counted to ten, or meditated, or did yoga. That feeling just won’t go away. Not necessarily to “want” someone who understands you, but to “need” someone who knows exactly where it hurts. The empty feeling is like a sharp pain in your heart. That keeps throbbing every other minute. And eventually, you become numb all over. Not only physically, but emotionally, mentally, and spiritually. And soon you’ll become a walking zombie. Living with depression. And anxiety that takes control over your life. To the point where you can’t sleep at night, or care for your children properly, or even think clearly. Your mind becomes cloudy. Your vision becomes blurry. Your appetite has either picked up drastically, or is completely gone. And your weight is up or down. You feel as if you’re gonna die at any given moment. You’re too weak to pray. Sometimes that weakness and emptiness makes you wanna abjure everything in the moment of darkness. Things like your hopes, dreams, the desires of your heart, your hopes to find true love again, and your relationships that aren’t quite working out. Whether it be, friends, family, significant others, coworkers, etc. But is this feeling even possible if all things work together for the good of those who love the Lord? Maybe it’s because God needed you lonely and isolated to seek him. To seek love from him. To seek comfort from him. To seek counsel from him. To seek truth from him. To seek wisdom from him. To seek Glory from him. God always knows what’s best for us. Even when we don’t see it. Even when it’s total darkness in the tunnel. You have to put your faith in God and believe that there’s light at the end of the tunnel. If God closes the doors of hurt, pain, loneliness, and neglectfulness; He’s doing so with the purpose of us not looking back to walk through it. Instead he wants us to trust that he has a better door for us to open. We just have to learn to step out on faith and fight the good fight no matter how weak or hurt we are. We’re gonna endure cuts, scrapes and bruises along the way. God never said the weapons wouldn’t form. But he promised they wouldn’t prosper. There should be a constant reminder in our minds that ” Thou he slay me; Yet shall I trust in him”. There’s gonna be hurdles for us to jump. He didn’t say the road would be easy. But we will get to our destination that is aligned with his will for our lives if we trust him wholeheartedly. Naturally, it’s hard for us to believe a thing without seeing it. But that’s the process of building a relationship with our father. Being lonely isn’t so bad. Not only does it build your foundation and relationship with the Lord. But it also reveals things about ourselves that we never knew before. We begin to know who we are. We gain a special type of wisdom that only teaches through experience. We must learn a certain lesson that only comes from above in order to be prepared for the next level of our journey. And until we pass the test after the lesson, we’ll keep repeating the course until we have it. God cant take us to the next level until he knows that we’re fully equipped with all the tools we need. So instead of being down and depressed about someone not loving us the way we desire, we have to start loving ourselves the way we desire. We have to learn to enjoy our own company and embrace the present moment. Instead of being down and negative looking for someone to make you happy, go out and try things you never experienced. Go skating, write the poems or the book, sing the songs, learn to dance, go rock climbing, go fishing, take a walk in the park and meditate. Listen to nature, the birds singing and the winds blowing. Go bowling. Have a picnic in the park with your children. Go to a museum or the city zoo. Go horseback riding, go race car driving. Go to a baseball game. Volunteer at the children’s hospital. Speak at the prisons to encourage someone. Buy the homeless lunch. Do at least one good deed everyday of your life. Tell the lady in Walmart she’s beautiful or you like her shoes. Let the person behind you at the grocery store who has 3 items to go ahead of you when your basket is full. Doing good positive things takes your mind off the negatives. And in doing so, not only do we become better mentally and spiritually. But doing good deeds makes us humble. It reminds us that our situation could be a lot worse. It gives us a sense of gratefulness and gratitude that we didn’t have before. So the next time you feel down about a situation, I urge you to look to the hills from whence our help cometh. Loneliness is an emotion. It was never meant for us to build our homes and live there.

Sacrificing Needs For Needs

Have you ever had to sacrifice something you desperately needed to survive for something else you needed for survival? Like maybe, food on the table for gas to get to work? Have you ever had to make the decision to walk to work while having a car outside of your home but, your children needed dinner for the night and you were down to your last $7? Or maybe, you had a disconnection notice scheduled for the same day as your doctors appointment and you didn’t have insurance to cover it? Or maybe your child outgrew their shoes but all you had was enough money to pay the rent? Have you ever had to make a lifestyle of robbing Peter to pay Paul? And then eventually, you became so far behind and delinquent on every bill that you crawled into a whole and you didn’t know how you were gonna climb out? Have you ever had your family to judge and look down on you because you could never get ahead in life? But they didn’t quite understand your decisions and sacrifices you had to make for you and your children to stay afloat to keep from drowning. They didn’t quite understand because they were never put in those situations to know why you made the choices you made. They begin to look down on you and speak so negative about your struggle from they’re perspective. They would speak so badly about you that they began to have others looking at you like a total failure. Not knowing that this particular struggle came to create strength in certain areas and discipline when it came to finances. It taught patience and humbleness. And most importantly it built faith. Faith is believing without seeing. Have you ever had to quit a job that paid great money and had excellent benefits? all because you didn’t have anyone to help you with your children? Or maybe you had help with the children, but the babysitter practically let your children raise themselves? So for the sake of your children headed to self destruction, you quit your job for another job that paid less with no benefits. Sometimes in life, we’re forced to make decisions that we can only make through prayer and believing that something better is sure to come. There comes a point in life where you become sick and tired of the same struggle. And you make the decision to get in a position to never go through it again. Like going back to school in the evenings and working a 9-5 to support your family. Sometimes you have to block out all distractions and get focused and strategic about the things that are top priority for your life. You have to drown out all the chaos and confusion. Let those who hate you be your motivation to be great. You have to replace your enemies with your destiny. Enemies are a distraction from the calling God has on your life. You have no room for distractions. No room for procrastinations. Are we being good stewards of the time God has given us? Are we truly maximizing our lives to our full potential? We are all guilty of wasting time. God puts us in struggle seasons for his glory in the end. He wont put more on us than we can bare. But it’s up to us to decide if we’re willing to come out of it, or if we choose to stay there. At times, he keep us in the struggle until we learn the lesson that was taught to us in order for us to go into the next level and receive our blessing. Have you ever heard the saying ” New Level, New Devil”? It’s kind of like the game Mario Brothers. Where you pass all the boards and then you have to fight the ultimate battle with the enemy and you must defeat him before you can go to the next level. But staying focused is the key. How badly you want it will determine how far you’ll make it and how successful you’ll become. The choice is totally up to you. Will you decide to stay in struggle season, or will you come out on the winning side?