Posts Tagged ‘Grace’

waterfall-4Browsing through some old email, I came across a message I sent to some of my family on New Year’s Day– a message I had completely forgotten about.  Having re-read it and as we are all family, I felt encouraged to share with you.  Although this is a New Year’s message, as we reach the halfway mark of 2014 let us all be reminded today and everyday to make God the upmost priority in our lives.

P.s. If you are wondering about what happened to daddy, check the post: I Know It Was The Blood from December 2013. God is good! Be blessed!

On Wednesday, January 1, 2014 4:31 PM,
Hello and Happy New Year Family,
I truly wish you a year filled with health, prosperity, God’s richest blessings and every good thing from heaven above in the year 2014. We know 2013 was a bit of a trying year for most of us. It was one year ago that our beloved May May took sick and after a valiant fight, lost her life to cancer. In addition Jennifer’s mom Ms. Mavis passed. Keisha also has had an exceptionally trying year with the loss of loved ones and of course there was this unexpected close call and shocker with daddy. Thank God for His mercy for sparing daddy’s life. Through it all, God has kept us. Life is full of trials and suffering, things happen to us that don’t make sense and day to day things can get so overwhelming. Although it was so hard to lose those we love, I am writing to specifically speak to the incident with daddy and the impact it should have on our lives. God preserving Daddy’s life is undeniably due to the hand of our Lord miraculously stepping in to save him. From Mommy being home with him, to him making it to the doctor, to the doctor thinking quickly to order the echocardiogram, to the echocardiogram tech being available at the right time, halting her lunch to do the test, to the helicopter taking him immediately to the hospital, etc. etc—–everything was not done by coincidence or random chance. Everything was done under the divine guidance and specific direction of God. Sometimes God will allow close calls to happen for us to open our eyes, acknowledge Him and recognize who He is. He allows those tests for us to recognize that He has all control and we are fully dependent on Him.  All of us know God and all of us have some foundation in God. But that is not enough. God does not want a passing here and there relationship where we seek Him when something happens and barely acknowledge Him when things are good.

He wants you to surrender your life to Him, repent of your sins and accept Jesus as your Lord and savior. He wants you to do your best to live for Him and fulfill your purpose. He wants you to represent who He is and bring other people to know Him. Essentially, He wants a full relationship. Just like you take time to develop relationships with your family, husband, friends–God wants you to take that time and effort to get to know Him. When you live for God, it doesn’t mean you will always understand what He does (His knowledge is far above human knowledge and He sees things we cannot see); doesn’t mean you won’t mess up, doesn’t mean you won’t go through difficulties and doesn’t mean you will understand all that happens in this life. But I can personally tell you the more you walk with God, the more peace you have despite difficulties, the more joy you have even when you don’t have everything you want, the more you will begin to appreciate what matters in life and will let go of the unnecessary things. He gives you just what you need even when by worldly standards it doesn’t seem enough. Also in God we have the hope by faith of living forever in heaven in complete joy and bliss–no more suffering, pain or difficulties. And finally when you walk with God and take time to really know Him, you begin to understand Him more. You begin to know His voice and you understand when He is guiding you and when it is not Him guiding you. You can’t understand and know God by natural thinking or by your physical body. Our brains alone cannot comprehend Him. You get to know and understand God best by spending time with Him and by your spirit. That instinct of feeling something is going to happen, something in your mind telling you to do something (Jamaican people love to say “mi mind tell mi seh fi do….) or go a certain direction; that unexplained gut feeling is God’s spirit communicating with your spirit and guiding you. It is a supernatural thing that can’t be explained by nature. As you spend more time with God you will begin to know when God is speaking through words, other people, a song anything. You will feel He is addressing you by and in your spirit. You really get to know Him like you would your father, friend, brother or husband. How do you grow in this? After giving your life to Christ, then you spend time with God by praying, reading the bible, going to church and letting people who God has gifted to teach about Him share their knowledge. Your spirit will begin to be more sensitive to God’s spirit and with time you want to follow God overall because you know that even though it doesn’t always make sense at first, God’s plan is the best for you.original-abstract-tree-landscape-painting--stained-glass-tree-2-amy-giacomelli

So I say all this to say, all of us, especially after witnessing what happened to daddy have to draw closer to God and truly do better and live for Him. I include myself too, because although I have been living more for God, I can always do better. I know I need to be more patient, have a better attitude at times, etc. But doing better goes for anyone–pastor, minister, anyone. We will never be perfect in this life until we go to heaven–growing in God and becoming the best person He wants you to be is a lifelong process. The goal is to everyday become more like Jesus–the only man that never sinned and walked in complete love and humility serving God and loving and serving mankind. Because of the fall of Adam and Eve and the sin of the world, we will never become like Jesus on earth. But the idea is to grow, grow and grow some more. So for those of us in the group who have already given our life to God and are actively trying to live the life, do better. For those of us who may have given our life in the past, but kind of strayed away , rededicate your life back to Christ. Stop doing those things that are not pleasing to God. For those who have never done it, why not give your life today? As we have seen over this year, tomorrow is promised to none of us. You never know when your turn is up. But when you live for God, the hope of heaven makes dealing with things a little easier and death doesn’t seem as scary; although we know in all honesty it’s not an easy thing to deal with. My prayer every day always is that those I love will go to heaven. I don’t want anyone I care for especially my family going to hell. So please, don’t take what happened for granted. And for God’s sake , don’t take God for granted if you can help it. We all do it from time to time–but let’s get better about not doing that. We can’t go back to business as usual. God only wants us to love Him and for us to accept His love because He loves us so much. Just like none of us likes rejection, God does not either. Make a decision to live fully for Him today. People may try to find fulfillment in other people, possessions, drugs, alcohol, money and a host of other things. But those things only bring temporary fulfillment. God made us so that we can only get complete fulfillment through Him. Not through children, wife, husband, money, anything. Those things can make you happy don’t get me wrong. But still there will always be that feeling that something is missing. That is because only God alone can fulfill every hole, every gap and every longing of our soul. We were created to have a relationships with Him.

So think about where you stand today and begin to take the step to surrender to God. I promise you once you do, you don’t want to turn back or even if you fall for a little while, you don’t want to stay back. You will want to live a life that honors God and you naturally begin to love the things he loves and hate the things He hates that are not good for us. He will transform your life in ways you never could imagine. Sorry this is so long but this was something I felt in my spirit to share by the Lord’s leading. Love you all so much. I really am so blessed to have such a wonderful, loving, talented and supportive group of people in my life.

May 2014 be the best year of you life!
Love you
T

 

 

School had been a part of my journey for so long.  Beyond elementary education and high school, I pushed through 4 years of college, 4 years of medical school and 3 years of residency training to become a physician.  That’s in addition to presently having to keep up with continuing medical education studies on an ongoing basis through my professional career.   I don’t take credit for these accomplishments.  All that I am, all that I have done and all that I will become I fully recognize and admit is due to the benefits of God’s grace.  I am the tangible and visible manifestation of the miracle and mystery, the immeasurable depth and detail, the intimacy and infinite possibilities of God’s grace.

It is the thread that weaves through and holds together every fabric of our existence.  When you draw breath each morning, can take a step forward, see food in the cupboard, clothes on your back, loving friends and family, enjoy the scent of spring flowers,  was spared that car accident, so and so forth –all of this  and more, every thing we are blessed to have or do, are compliments of that curious thing called grace.  Rooted in grace, is God’s  love; even when we don’t deserve it.  I will be the first to admit I am not perfect.  I’m an ok person, but catch me in the right mood and I am not so lovable.  But grace says I love you irregardless of , irrespective of and in spite of you.  I see your flaws, but I love you and I want to bless you anyhow.  God is merciful to extend His grace to us and in the same way, despite what we see and know, we must extend that type of grace to others.

It was by God’s grace that I came from being a little Jamaican girl of a modest background, to a family physician practicing in New York City.  When endless hours in the hospital sometimes overwhelmed me to the point of wanting to give up, it was God’s grace that was sufficient and His strength that was shown perfect in my weakness.   It was God’s grace that kept my sanity through some really difficult trials and heartbreak.   It was His mercy and grace that spared my life and supernaturally delivered me from some dangerous situations.  I need no convincing regarding the reality of God’s grace.  I have seen and experienced it firsthand over and over again in day to day living and in miraculous ways. The unbelievable fact is that grace is not something I earned or deserved.  True to the scripture that “all have sinned and come short of the glory of God (Roman 3:23, NKJV), I fall short of His glory and commit trespasses every day.  But God’s grace, his unmerited favor, through the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ is the gift that He lovingly and freely gives to bless us and allow us to overcome the inevitable trials we must face.

That being said, given my journey thus far, surely I would be the last  person that anyone would expect to return back to school.  Surely I had paid my dues and put in enough time?  Right?  Well, God is certainly not everyone and He certainly is not just anyone. The Lord spoke to me about seminary back in 2010 while taking a bible course at a friend’s church, where the pastor of the church wrote “this is seminary level work” on a paper I had written.  This would give me a further glimpse of the overall plan God had for my life.   Shocked and humbled by the comment, I got a quickening in my spirit that comes when only God is speaking.  Terrified and still unsure, I didn’t share this with anyone.  My thought process was something like this:

“Really Lord?  More school”?   I enjoyed the bible institute and the subsequent discipleship classes I took a at Greater Allen Cathedral, but formal school? I loved learning more about God, the things related to the gospel, the Church and the Kingdom.  I looked forward to that aspect of school.  But the pressures of papers, deadlines, public speaking—Lord are you serious? Seminary school?  “Alright, Lord if this is You,  I really don’t believe it is for now.  You have to confirm every detail of this endeavor—timing, location, everything.  I told you wherever you take me I will go, but this is a big move.  I don’t want to take this step until I’m absolutely sure.”  That was fall 2010. Over the following years I prayed, waited and watched.  All the while I drew closer to Him and developed a deep relationship with Him.  He began to show Himself in ways I never knew before and where I struggled with hearing God previously, I now am so much better at discerning His still small voice.   I learned to allow God’s Holy Spirit to “ …guide me in all truth..” (John 16:13, NLT) and “… teach me in all things…” (John 14:26, NKJV).

Finally, over the past year the Lord began to confirm through other people, unaware of what I felt in my spirit years ago, that I was destined to go  to seminary or pursue some sort of path in formal ministry.   I still don’t know all that God is up to.   But that is the comforting thing about God. I don’t have to have it all figured out.   Even when we are clueless and totally unsure,  God knows.  God is omniscient—He is all knowing.  He knows everything about all things at all times.  He knows the grandest to the most minuscule details of my life.  Even when I step out in blind faith, I am stepping out with an all-seeing God beside me.  Notice I said beside me because He is omnipresent.  He is always present.  Herbert Lockyer said it best in his book, All the Doctrines  of the Bible when he said God “has no center and His circumference is everywhere.”  God told me through His word “Behold, I am with you and I will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; I will not leave you until  I have done what I have spoken to you” (Genesis 28:15, NKJV).  Based on that scripture, because God is always speaking and it will take my lifetime to fulfill my purpose, God is sure to never forsake me.  His word cannot lie. Finally God is omnipotent.  All power is in His hand.  His very essence is power.  So not only is He with me through this life’s journey, but He has the power to bring every plan and purpose for my life to pass.  The arm of he Lord is not shortened.  Having applied to seminary, by God’s grace and provision I  have been accepted to start in  2014.

And so begins the next leg of the journey and I press on. Where would I be without the gifting of God’s grace?  Grace has brought me thus far and it will see me to the very end.  I know I can’t rise without it simply because, God’s:

Gifts & Resources  Allow Constant Elevation.

And Yet Still I Rise,

With peace and blessings may you continue to rise always,

Stillirise323