"But for Adam no suitable helper was found. So the Lord God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, He took one of the man’s ribs and then closed up the place with flesh. Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib He had taken out of the man, and He brought her to the man. The man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called ‘woman,’ for she was taken out of man.” That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh. Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame (Genesis 2:20-25)."
The following thought has plagued my mind since between 2 and 3 a.m. Saturday morning. Many say, feel and believe that women are the weaker or even the lesser vessel. Yes, there are specific things meant for men and specific things meant for women, but if you open your mind to the reality of what God created in woman, you'd see no weakness there. Had God intended for man and woman to not need one another, He would have snatched Eve out of the dirt as He did Adam. Instead, He pulled her from Adam's core. The gap that is left, can only be filled and protected by her.
Imagine a house made of solid stone, except for one solitary window of glass. When enemies come to attack this place, do you think they will stand around throwing rocks upon the stone walls? Or will they funnel their aim to the lone window, where the citadel is weakest? When built right, there is a stone slab that slides down over the window, in such times. This is how God intended for man and woman to get along. Without each other, we both are weak and susceptible to worldly attacks. "Divide and conquer" has been a tactic used in warfare since before the beginning of warfare as we know it. Had God NOT intended for man and woman to be one, act as one, and depend on one another, He'd have made us asexual (in the biological sense).
Considering all that I've said thus far, Man alone is weak. Woman alone, is weak. Together in the God's sense of our togetherness, we are strong. What if Eve never ventured off on her own? What if Adam stayed within safe distance with the mindset of protecting her at all times? Would she have been coaxed into doing what she did? Who knows, but hypotheticals are irrelevant. Together, we have better chances of survival and staying on good and solid ground. Apart, we live dangerously.
In many of my posts, i speak about relationships, men and women. In this case, I speak of GOOD men and GOOD women. I won't lie or sugar coat. There are poor examples of both in the world. No GOOD man would ever say that the woman, a woman, his woman is a weak vessel. For a GOOD man considers his mother, his grandmothers, aunts, and sisters before applying such a label of ill logic. Now, those of you who do consider women to be weak, say that about your mother, grandmothers, aunts, and sisters. I can't. I won't. It would be a flat out lie.
Man and woman were meant for each other. In our current society, we are led to believe we don't have to have one another, but we all want babies and families. Let that get at your roots. My Woman is the steel plate, resting over the one hole in my armor. My Baby is a vessel of steel. No Good Man would ever say otherwise, of his Good Woman!!
Those who have ears will hear, and those who don't, won't.......
"But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you......."
Why? Because God has been doing it from the beginning of time.......way before you and your personal feelings and opinions. Who are we to feel and act as though we are greater or better than the Greatest and Best? Loving unconditionally is doable! Not being ignorant, is doable! Not being uneducated, is doable! Not being racist, is doable! Not being a criminal, is doable! Not being a liar, is doable! Not being unfaithful is doable! Not being evil, is doable!! Not being vengeful, is doable! Not being a fool, is doable! Long story short, everything you are and believe is a choice, made by you and only you. Are you a decent human being? Are you not? Again, it's a choice, made by you and only you!!
This world is the way it is by choice. We've accepted, settled, and allowed all sorts stuff that falls less than and beneath what God initially intended for us. We chose the tasting of the forbidden over God. We chose a mortal king over an Eternal God, Creator of an entire universe! In so many countries and ventures and explorations, we've chosen theft, rape, murder, war, and oppression over peaceful coexistence of cultures, religions, and races. Tell me we haven't. The evil intent of one has spoiled the entire bunch of us, mankind. Unfortunately, we live in a world divided in two and only two. Either your chosen lifestyle mimics that of our Creator, God, or it reflects the actions and ways of the deceiver and evil one, Satan. There is no in between. There is no fence to straddle. There is no gray area, as some people would have you to believe.
Yet, there is ALWAYS hope. There is ALWAYS better to be had!! LOVE!!
"Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres." - 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 -
LOVE IS DOABLE!!
Those who have ears, let them hear.......
At times, as I stand before the mirror, I see my strength. I see all the things I've endured to be who I am today; to be where I am today. The scars, internal and external, remind me of pain in which I've stood. Storm after storm, fire after fire, flood after flood, I kept on climbing this mountain that life set before me. As I'm happily tooting my own horn and admiring myself for the strength that exists in my body, I arrive at the mountain top, only to see her. She's already there and has been there, awaiting my arrival. My blessing, she is. My reward for finally getting it right! When I look a her, I become puny. For I see in her a greater strength than mine. I'm humbled, yet ecstatically grateful!
I see her path, her struggle, and her scars. I see places in her past where she stood strong through the things I gave in to. I see how much sooner I could have been here, if only I had followed my heart to begin with. Then, maybe she would not have had to wait so long for me to show up. Thank YOU GOD, for this woman!! Thank YOU GOD for setting her aside for me! Thank YOU GOD for the blessing of Crimesha Evette Cutts!! 43 years ago today, You blessed this earth with magnificence, and a beauty only known to me, my heart, my soul!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE ABSOLUTE LOVE OF MY LIFE!! I LOVE YOU FOREVER AND FOR ALWAYS!!! YOU ARE MY PINNACLE GIRL!! ATOP THIS MOUNTAIN, WE WILL STAND FOREVER!!
When that cold wind blows, I stand still and I stand strong, as I gaze upon my trees and those of my neighbors. Speaking any words only leads to loss of needed heat to endure the season. So, silence becomes my trusted confidant. Vigilant, my eyes remain on the branches, praying that we lose not another between now and Spring.
My ears tune intently to the mourning of a neighbor, whose house was jolted by the falling of a major limb. Suddenly, I hear a crack above my head. As if in slow motion, I watch as one of mine falls. I tremble as I fight back the tears that will only become ice if I allow them freedom. The wailing in my chest presses toward my vocals. Then, that cold wind blows again, seeming to zero in on my right cheek. My eyes close, and I'm reminded of the cold noses of my babies when they were babies, mashing into my cheek as they delivered the sweetest sugar a father can know.
My eyes open to see several saplings surrounding the bases of the older trees. From the same roots they are born; they grow and are made strong. In this transition of focus, I'm advised of the roots, the Source of the life found in both, the young and old. We may lose limbs or maybe even and entire trunk, but recognizing, tending, and nurturing the roots will always bring forth life. The family will never die. Our roots run deep and will Forever inhabit the Earth.
We are and abide by Spirit.
Those who have ears, let them hear.......
This morning, I was delivered the news that Uncle Earnest passed away. Such, no one wants to hear on a day like today, or any Holiday. Immediately the memories began to roll through. From fishing in Arkansas to his visit to South Alabama for my mother's graduation for the University of South Alabama, along with Uncle Ike Lee. He had a video camera in the early 80's, which to us meant big time. It was the coolest thing having him film us as we climbed trees, swung from ropes, and giving tours of our makeshift tree house. I remember the name my eldest daughter game him, when she was three; "Unka Earnie."
As my heart continues down these memories to missed opportunities to visit and get together, regret tries to creep into my mind. Suddenly, my heart speaks up and says, "Cut it out!!" I think about the times I talked to Uncle Earnest about getting together and going fishing etc, and he'd be traveling or tied up with other things. When I look over his actions and his living, I see no regrets. Uncle Earnest lived with no regrets, and I'm sure he'd slap me upside the head if he heard I had regrets about not seeing him as often as I could have. He was living his life and I'm sure he is content knowing I am living mine as best as can, taking care of my family.
If you knew Uncle Earnest's full story, you might find yourself amazed at all he experienced in his life. Knowing only some of his story, leaves me with the message dropped upon my heart, in his passing; NO REGRETS ALLOWED!! LIVE YOUR LIFE TO THE FULLEST!! BE FRIGGIN HAPPY!!
At my grandfather's funeral in 2012 and our family reunion in 2014, I looked at all the lives touched by Uncle Earnest. All is see is joy and admiration in all who know him. To see lives and hearts touched the way that only he could touch them, encourages me to keep on living and doing right by others, seeking no selfish gain. When I say I love you, it's because it's genuinely in my heart to do so, and I seek nothing in return. Uncle Earnest loved his family, plain and simple and he gave as much as he could to as many as he could. How can you have regrets when you've given nothing but love to all who you've come across along your path of this thing called life?
DAMN!! We weren't ready Uncle Earnest, but it ain't about us!! You've graduated and gained your reward of eternal life and peace, away from this Earth where you've left a huge and deep imprint. I miss you dude!!
Today is a day of thanks. We all get together with family and friends, in fellowship and in love. This day; this morning I write in honor and in memory of Ms. Jeanette Monique Sylvester, another mother of mine. Ms. Sylvester was no joke. She was tough, brutally honest, yet full of love. She was also an educator, so she was always teaching or providing instruction, even when you didn't ask for it. I remember hanging out as a teenager with Domanique at their house. Ms. Sylvester would always ask questions about my abilities. "Bryan, you know how to cut grass?" "Can you change a tire?" "Do you know how to wash a car?" Yes, yes, and yes, Ms. Sylvester! Then, she'd say "Show/Tell me how!" Needless to say, one could not be a punk of a man around her without her indirectly, intelligently, and sweetly letting you know that you were a punk. I feel the things she stressed and demanded of young men helped me to understand more of the quality I possessed and needed to possess to be considered a good man.
As I think back on my times spent at the Sylvester house, in Eight Mile, AL, I find myself grateful. I am grateful for the laughs, the conversations, and lessons learned there. I am certainly grateful for the many plates of hot dogs and french fries, fried chicken, and whatever else was being cooked on any given night. I am so grateful that "Mommy" was able to hold my kids as little babies. I am certainly grateful for the lesson learned in the following conversation from my days as a 17 year old:
This was the day she asked me about my ability to wash a car. She had just finished soaping up her black Geo Prizm (I think it was a Prizm). She told me to rinse it off. So, I grabbed the hose and went to spraying. After a brief time, she took the hose from me and simply held it over the top of the car and washed the soap off from top to bottom. What lesson could be learned from this moment? Why has this memory stuck with me for 24 years? Why? I'll tell you why. God plants seeds in us by means of good, honest, and loving people in our lives. Imagine rinsing the sides of the car first, only to rinse the top last. The soap will likely run down the sides, leaving a bit of residue. What life lesson does this bring, at the behest of an elementary school teacher, while simply washing her car in the driveway?
Top to bottom, is the lesson. When you want to clean up, make better of yourself, or create positive change in your life, it starts from the top. What's at the top? Your head; your mind. When making a better life; a better way for yourself, washing your hands first helps you none. The change must begin in your mind. En Vogue said, "Free your mind, and the rest will follow." Think about it. When you see victory for yourself in your mind, you play harder, better, and smarter. THANK YOU MS. SYLVESTER for always planting the seeds of "good man" in my mind!! I know my mother is grateful as well, for you being one to ALWAYS hold me accountable when I was out and about and away from home!!
THANK YOU MAMA SYLVESTER FOR WHO YOU WERE TO ME, TO YOUR FAMILY, AND TO ALL WHO HAVE BEEN BLESSED TO KNOW YOU!! YOU WERE ALWAYS ONE OF THE STRONGEST WOMEN I'VE EVER KNOWN!! I'M CERTAIN GOD HAS FOUND GREAT VALUE IN YOU, AS YOU ARE NOW KEEPING ALL OTHER ANGELS IN LINE AND IN ORDER, LETTING THEM FALL SHORT OF NOTHING!! WE LOVE YOU!! WE MISS YOU!!
As I laid with my woman this morning, grateful to God for her presence in my life; grateful to God for our children and family, my mind ran to God:
I walk out to the shore, where Your Love meets me. One toe in, and the waters are perfect. I wade out, chest deep, mesmerized at Your swells and at peace in the comfort of Your Love. Each swell lifts me, and shifts me. Each new place is where I'm meant to be, until the next shift comes. Over the past 41 years, thousands up thousands of swells and waves, You've crashed upon me. I look back at these years and fully know, that it is You, my God, that has been there all along. Wading, and sometimes treading, in Your ocean of Love, I've been, all of my life. I've sometimes been snatch by Your undertows, pulling me out of dangerous areas and situations. There were even times, You held me under as fierce storms troubled the surface. Not fully understanding Your ways and Your will at times, I do trust You, Lord, and that it's always through, for, and about Your Love for me.......Thousands upon thousands of waves and swells, protecting me, lifting me, and shifting me to all the places you'd have me to be.......
Those who have ears, let them hear.......
Let them hear about the mighty God of all Creation!
Let them hear about a Love greater that all others!
Let them hear about Grace and Mercy that leads to Salvation!
Let them hear about the means of that Salvation, Jesus Christ, through whom ALL must go to see and to know God Almighty, Creator of the Heavens and the Earth, Lover of all hearts and souls, Forgiver of sins!!!
Let them hear how there is no distance too great, no hole too deep for God to reach down, touch you, grab you, and pull you out of whatever darkness that has befallen you!
One issue I find to be an issue among us, in this thing called life.......too many of us approach it as checkers, when it's chess. It's not only that. The checker heads aren't even trying to hear the instruction of the chess players. They walk boldly into the arena of chess, not even realizing how unprepared and ill-equipped they are to even begin a path to victory. They don't even know that the loss was established in their minds before leaving the house, heading down the road to the tournament, in which they are now about to be slaughtered.
A parent can only go so far, before God and even the world begins to hold the child accountable for his/her words, actions, and choices. Yet, the parent remains on the sideline with the water, coaching, and critique. I just pray that every child, currently living under the care of GOOD parents, listens to sound wisdom, instruction, and advice while it's readily available and often imparted. I also pray for the parents that fall short; that they open their hearts and minds to better, so that they become better for God's children. Ultimately, all children belong to God. We are just blessed to be stewards and held accountable for such blessings. When God goes over your life with you, how do you want that conversation to go?
I suggest that we not wait until THAT day to converse with the Almighty! Start the talks now, and maybe that deciding discussion won't be so terrifying when it comes. For you will already have given your ear and heart to Him in a way that moves you to the lifestyle that leads to eternal life, rather than damnation.
Okay, I'm rambling now. I struggle from time to time with "nice" because the truth is not always nice or even considerate of feelings. My heart aches for the times I've hurt my children's feelings with truth, but I'd rather give them bitter vitamins and painful immunizations than candy placebos that are sweet and useless. So, there are times I can't be nice, if it's the truth that your soul needs most. It's bitter and bruising. It's like fingernails on a chalkboard.......so, unpleasant to our ears. Truth is, there is good in this world and there is evil in this world. Some of us serve God, while others of us serve satan. None of us is perfect. Many of us are racist. The conflict always comes when truth is denied. When truth is denied, we find further division. When truth is denied, trust breaks, melts down, and evaporates in the hell that truth denial brings. When truth is denied, we can't really be friends for real. Truth is often a mirror many of us refuse to face. It's a hard look to take for many of us, due to the things we've allowed ourselves to become.
Humbling, truth is.
Those who have ears, let them hear.......
There were times I put all my eggs in one basket. There were times I counted my chickens before they hatched. There were even times I said, "Never!" There were also times I ignored the red flags, and times when I burned a bridge or two. There were times when I allowed myself to be a sheep, led to the slaughter. There were times I didn't listen to Ma or Dad. There were so many times I refused my own heart.
In all these times, you'd think I'd be ruled by regret, but I'm not. I think about the paths that all my mucked up choices took me down. Then, I look at the blessing I am today, along with the blessings I've gained along the way, and I'm grateful. Along those shoddy roads, God still favored me enough to give me my children, Taylor and Davyd. He still favors me enough that these here diabetes has not had any ill effect on my organs or nerves. He even favored me enough to give back to me, a Love I walked away from over 22 years ago. With that Love came two more monkeys, T2 and Mattie, whom I love as my very own. I've been blessed, even though my choices weren't always the best. The family I have and the friends I've gathered along the way, are tremendous blessings that only God could have given.
Although there were times, my actions were beneath me, God remained above me! Although my decisions often led to loss, God remained on and in all accounts. There were times when doubt was my pimp, but God was always near to snatch me off that corner, like Richard Gere. I love God! I love everything about Him! God is the ONLY true constant in this universe. The rest of us are flighty, fleeting, and fickle. I recognize all the areas where God stood and stands in my life, and I give Him His due. Every day, I exist, simply because He allows life to fill my body. I LOVE HIM!
Those who have ears, let them hear.......
Imagine that, in a political season, slander and mud slinging was unlawful and at no time could you speak anything concerning your opponent; not even his or her name. What if such were punishable by prison time, a minimum of seven years? What if those who are running for office were only allowed to speak of themselves, their character, their personal histories and accomplishments, if any? As I contemplate our politics, I realize that Washington D.C. has become less of our country's head and more of our country's butt, covered with boils and an itchy, irritating rash that no cream seems to work on. I am not speaking of any individual or individuals. I am speaking of our politics in this nation. Yet, individuals are what make up this system, so if the shoe fits, slide it on and get thee to the pharmacy and see about something for that rash.
Moving on, what if each and every one of our politicians' claims concerning their character and care for wherever they're from, or for this nation had to be proven? Imagine pastors being questioned about this or that politician's attendance and tithing. Ponder researching records of organizations that these folks claim to have served, be a part of, or established. Let's say that this fantasy of mine is our new reality. Whenever lies are uncovered, the politician who attempted to deceive us would be fined, serve some prison time and be banned from politics for life. Do you think such measures would bring about positive change that we all would like to see in our nation's capitol? Would we even have a political system?? I don't know but I can say that I have no idea what our "head" looks like because all I've seen, since I've been living, is this country's ass, politically speaking of course.
If our leaders were truly God fearing and about righteousness, we'd see so much more of what we all desire in terms justice, equality, accountability, responsibility, and so much more. Unfortunately, a vast majority of us worships other gods.......tradition, hate, feelings & emotions, people, and our media in all forms that it comes; oh, and MONEY. I remember times in my past when I'd inform my mother of certain actions I was about to take. She'd suggest I pause, be honest with myself, and identify my intent, true intent. In most cases, it was out of emotion, the god that I was serving in those moments. Once my emotions were in check and pride was put aside, I could clearly see wisdom and whether or not moving forward with whatever actions was for the best. Don't get me wrong, there were times I kept the emotion and pride gods at the forefront and went full steam into some of the dumbest mistakes I've ever made in my life.
As individuals, we MUST be able to seek wisdom intentionally, and THINK for OURSELVES before we can be of true use to any good thing. Think about the various groups of which you may be a part. Can you honestly say that all hearts involved are there for the same reasons, genuine ones? Honesty cannot exist in places where Truth is not allowed. It's like when God said, "These people come near to Me with their mouth and honor Me with their lips, but their hearts are far from Me. Their worship of Me is based on merely human rules they have been taught (Isaiah 29:13)." Sound familiar? Lip service is what most of us is all about. I'm not immune to mistakes and I've been guilty of talking more than acting. Actions identify Truth quicker than our words ever will. We see these things every day. Are we honest enough to admit when ill things are found within us? Again, you can't be honest with anyone, let alone yourself, without first receiving and accepting Truth into your very being. Now, hear this little nugget: If your heart is one of Truth, then Truth is smuggled into all the places where YOU are accepted and received. Will you allow it out?
There is much more I want to say, but I will take it easy on the simple minds today. Truth is HIGHLY offensive in our current society and politics.......yet, it never offends those living in it. Let that marinate for a bit before you try to grill it.
Those who have ears, let them hear.......
P.S. Before you flick the booger, you gotta, first, pick the booger! THINK!
Bryan Hollomon Williams