Shining… But Not Very Brightly.

Hello. October was all about the word Shine. So let me share what the mean it of the word emphasizes. To Shine means: To have significance: (the quality of being worthy of attention); the quality of being important. Synonyms of this special word are: to have heart, sense , understanding, force, or meaning.

I bet when you thought of Shining this wasn’t at the forefront of your mind, huh?

I chose a word that was a bit difficult to practice this month. Not because I couldn’t practice it, it was because I have to receive the word a bit differently. One of the things that caught me off guard was how much it takes to Shine… especially when you are not feeling the best.

Photography by You Are So Beautiful Photography
Me driving to work one morning.

Shining matters within, our personalities and out outer appearance, at times- and also on the outside of our lives: how we cherish moments with the special people in our lives. My momma always told me: “Actions speak louder than words.” The parts of our lives where no one notices – but you, your family and your children. It matters to them, it matters to God. That we let our “lights shine” no matter where we are, no matter what we are doing.

I’ve learned that wherever I am leaving a legacy of truth and discipline, hope, influence, purpose and good communication, those are places where I truly shine I also am shining where I am a positive and showing meaningful leadership. Where I care for others and remain positive, even when other around me, are not.

Where everyone in my life sped things up this weekend, I decided to slow it down. If I cannot hear myself for the sake of moving too fast, then I may need to turn the volume down. Am I taking time for that family member? Am I spending quality time with that loved one? Will this matter in five or ten years? Will it matter later this week? Just another positive way to think about whether “time” is mine, or it truly belongs to someone else.

Having had a birthday this past week, one of the things I am learning is to count the cost of everything… even the ones you miss. Sometimes the moments that matter most, are the ones you missed.

Why not slow it down, decided to do something different, make someone smile by choosing to do the one thing you normally would not have done, and bless them with the gift of time.

I am grateful for this month, because although I wasn’t feeling my best for most of the month, I took advantage of ‘ how I felt’, and instead of complaining , I made the most of it. And that involved shining, being grateful and giving thanks for what I have.

So when you slow it down this month, spend a little time reflecting on the Who, What, Where, Why and When… and even the “How” – ‘cause it all matters. Plan something very intentional, yet not work related. Take a Sabbath day. Change it up. Love on someone … Just because …and it will return unto you.

Share a few places where you’ve been shining lately very intentionally….

I took this on Lake Ontario, in Rochester NY

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When Dreams Come True

I am sharing about when m y dreams came true. Here is one story that tells how I got to South Africa, and it literally changed my life.

 10 yrs ago when I got back from South Africa I was standing in my kitchen and saw my reflection. In the reflection was a  reflection of how my friends in South  African saw me: “Nthabiseng”- which means – “MAKE ME HAPPY.” I was instantly reminded of my strength and that I had to remain HAPPY, because that’s my name! I saw through that reflection, I really wasn’t  strong, at home  in the situation  I was in,   in 2003  –  and set out to change that. As I  was leaving  South Africa, a sister who gave me a small hand mirror to take with me.   I left South Africa a new woman, with a new  dignity  and perspective, because a beautiful woman I spent a few hours with, found out my African name was Nthabiseng.  She was delighted to see the name fit me well and gave me a blessing of a ‘mirror,’ as a small gift. As I left my new home of S. Africa. She said to me: “Every time you look in this mirror, and are not with us, be sure to think about how you “Make Us Happy”. Boy, did that resonate! It carried me into a new destiny, and inspired me to take this photo tonight. So if you wonder where i get my strength from , think abut how my sisters in S, Africa poured into me one evening in Kuma, South Africa. 

I just love when I pursue God and he shows up. This is an excerpt from m y book: and in this chapter, I tell the story of my inheritance

Foundation Scripture: (Luke 17:21, 2 Corinthians 5:17) Key Questions: What do you want from God more than anything else? Are you willing to release your CONTROL over it and give it all over to God and release what you think “could be” for something even better?

I remember wanting to go to South Africa. I went to South Africa, but I didn’t know yet that the experience of going there, would completely supersede my ability to understand and comprehend God’s love for me.

I remember the first three days of visiting there. I had to much jet lag, I never thought I would be able to bounce back and be the resilient person I knew myself to be, with the boundless energy I knew I had! I think it took me about three days to recover from the of shock that I was actually here, on the other side of the world over 8,000 miles away and I was alive.. not dreaming. Although my reality at the time seemed as such, it was true. I was not dreaming. I had to pinch myself over and over as I looked around me, I ushered in the remembrance of the dream. I was literally in shock . It took a while to arrive there. Here’s what I wrote in my journal:” “My feet are tired, I have chills and feel as if I am about to become ill… but I am ready to meet the women of South Africa. Then later …“Well, I met them, all the women … are lovely. They help, help, help! They bought me Epsom salts for my sore swollen legs from sitting cramped for 14 plus hours… and warmed my bed with a hot water bottle. I knew I would love them!”

I later met another group of women, who I find were praying with me. When the leader inquired with me what I would like to do, I told her I had a word for the women, that God had given me, and I needed to share. She said, “Okay! We will have a prayer vigil all night long tonight!” She said: ”We have been praying for you, so I know God will show up!” Well I remember that night well. I remember waiting for the women to call the meeting together. They all were chatting and eating and everything else… I didn’t expect God to tell ME that I needed to call the meeting. I mean, I don’t even know these women, “Why would they listen to me??” I thought. Apparently, these women had much more of desire to listen and receive than I thought, yet I HAD to call the meeting. Before we ended that evening, with me: the women laid hands on me, and prayed. Feeling their hands and prayers on me, made me feel light. I was so full. I needed to rest, and they told me to sleep. I woke up the next morning empowered. I was no longer weak, my legs didn’t hurt and I could speak to them and tell them what we needed to do. I FELT like a synergistic leader. And I became a leader on another level.

I had walked into my inheritance in the Lord.

I didn’t know it at the time, but every time I was ready to speak to kids or share with adults, ‘a mighty power’ came over me strongly, that led me to share and do this in a mighty way. I felt as if I was made for this time.

The Book of Esther says: “ For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall relief and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place, but thou and thy father’s house shall perish: and who knoweth whether thou art not come to the kingdom for such a time as this?” Esther 4:14

Coming to the kingdom is knowing within yourself your worth. Knowing what you are called to, and knowing that you must receive all of what you were meant to have.

In the spiritual realm, what is that?

What are you worth? Jesus directly said to his disciples: ”Follow ME”. How do you know when Jesus truly calls you for something?

How did I know I was called to South Africa? God informed me in a dream a very vivid dream, I was to go there and make a difference. Then he positioned me to meet a man who   actually lived there and asked me to come and speak to  the children in his village, and share the vision that I had been working on with my business, Kamau.

Here is what it took for me to get to South Africa: I had to set to three consistent tasks: focus, discipline, and determination. I had to give a daily focus to something I truly believed would happen. And I had to believe nothing could get in my way. Once the plane arrived, I flew overseas, and I got off the plane… the true test had begun: I had not yet reached the people. Contentions came on every side about ‘why I was there’, and ‘who was I anyway to come and share with these youth?’ I neither knew about these questions, nor acknowledged them – (partly because I didn’t understand the language) Once there, I realized my momentum had be halted in some way, and I was not clear as to why. Then it occurred to me: Spiritual warfare. I asked to visit an internet café, emailed my friends and mentors who were believing with me… and asked them specifically to pray for me, and shared where I needed prayer from them. I got exactly what I needed: renewed vigor, focus, and vitality and to look past people ‘s feelings, thought and thinking. And time flew along. Gods strength became my strategy.

From that time on, I received God’s strength in such a way that I had never know before. I knew His knowledge like I haven’t spoken before. I had wisdom I had never know before. His wisdom. I knew truth on a new level. His truth. This  prayer kept me  focused and self- disciplined, and my  determination  grew daily.

And my inherent worth became even stronger, to lead. Following the greater good, began to look quite foreign to me, yet I know that where I was and what I was about to do, would fully arm me for what I was called do to for this entire mission.

  • Have you had a time where it seemed as if your purpose had come to a halt?
  • How did you approach that season in your life?
  • Where did your faith go? (Was it higher and more determined, or did it appear to be even harder to stretch?)
  • At what point did you begin to recognize your worth and dwell upon the promises of God?

Did you feel  as you were not in obedience,  you  would fail? 

Did you consider what this  would mean for the rest of your life?

Well … let me tell you when God made such a huge promise, I didn’t look back. I was thankful daily, for His divine intervention, and on those days I saw nothing, He prevailed. By the time the blessing fully arrived, it looked like a miracle, because I had arrived to the place where I had proclaimed thankfulness, on daily basis.

In this chapter, I talk of how I did not allow my intention to supersede God’s intention. In this manner, I began a new prioritization of God and His will for my life, and His will for my life, began to take over. I didn’t realize this surrendering of myself would turn into an entirely new way of living for me. From this experience, I received a greater expectation, a greater faith, and a greater realization of God’s sovereign ways, and His intention for me , became very clear, as well as his power, the angels he would send on my behalf to rush in for me and assist me with a vengeance. To see God’s will and volition move on my behalf, showed me His love for me.

This is an excerpt from my book: Red Sea Situations, Devotional and you can have the entire book and the devotional for a small price of $25.00.