When the time comes…

Sunrise. Sunset.

When the time comes…

Relief. Regret.

When the time comes…

Forget. Remember.

When the time comes…

Always Surrender.

When the time comes…

 

When you’re inside the will of God, life flows so much easier. It’s only when you step outside of His will – when you enter your will – that life gets rough. Let a female dog be a female dog and not define your life. Stay the course with Him in mind because you’re always on His.

When the time comes… we will surrender. Always.

Happy Sunday and Happy New Year.

A Written Libation

“In the beginning was the Word and the Word was God and the Word was with God…” – John 1:1

Writing – when everything else in the world around me disappears and allows me to indulge in the artistry of creativity pushing me to delve into incredible and breathtaking universes and worlds I had and still have the power to create by the authority vested in me to make the world a better place for the One who holds the whole world in His hands but took nails in them to save me from myself and the world from human error without error teaching us to remember the horror in His beauty sleep for 3 days after completing the sentence of life itself by responding to the universe with definitive 2nd to none, 1st to all authority, declaring: It Is Finished.

That’s what writing is and does for me. Thanks for the gifts, Father. Especially the One that hung on a tree with the words written personally to me: Well Done, thou good and faithful servant.

Happy Easter. May the Lord richly add a blessing to the readers, hearers, and doers of His word.

Without His Words, I am nothing.

Without His Words, I am nothing.

3/16/13

So today is March 16th, 2013.

I woke up this morning, determined. I had been feeling down and depressed all week long for some strange reason. I couldn’t find the strength, no, the will to sit my butt down on a chair and write anything. By the way, for those that claim to be writers, it isn’t writing unless you’re actually writing. One trick I learned from a teacher of mine in the past is that there’s a simple formula in writing. It’s as easy as 1-2-3. What is it? The formula is…(drumroll please)… ass to chair, pen to paper (fingers to keyboard).

It’s

just

THAT

simple.

Sit there. No matter how long it takes. Sit and eventually something magical will begin to happen to you. You’ll end up with the next project that either sells for millions, wins an Oscar, or impact someone’s life. Wouldn’t that be something if all three happened?

But enough about that.

I couldn’t find the will to sit my butt down on a chair and write anything. Until this morning. I got up and did my normal routine and finally sat down in front of my laptop and what do I see? The date 3/16.

That’s right. 3/16. A lot of you know where I’m going with this. Unfortunately, a few of you don’t. My job is to shed that light for you :)

Anywho, it immediately made me think about John 3:16. Y’know, from the Bible. John 3:16 – For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son; that whosoever believeth in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life.

Wow.

I know.

A scripture.

From the Bible.

Growing up in the church my entire, yes, my ENTIRE life (notice the emphasis on entire), there was no scripture that they hammered more into our heads as children than John 3:16. John 3:16. John 3:16. Where I come from, you would be a fool not to know that verse. “For that verse (in my theological scholar voice) is the verse to carry all verses. That verse is more important than life itself”.

Honestly, I believe that too.

So, here we are with these words. God loved the world so much that He gave His ONLY Son? If I believe in His Son, Jesus, I will have everlasting life? Really?

Really.

I didn’t come here to preach or anything of the sort. This post was really inspired from a thought to myself as soon as I saw the date. I thought, “I wonder, how many churches or ministries are out and about knocking on doors or having some type of program reflecting today’s date, 3/16. Hmm. I wonder how many JOHN’S are out and about doing the work. I wonder.”

It’s no secret.

I’m a Christian and I believe that Jesus is the Son of God and died for my sins so that I could be with God again in Heaven when I die and that in three days after His death He rose with all power being equal with God and gives me the power to do incredible works beyond what He did by the power and authority of the Holy Spirit, which makes up the other third of the Holy Trinity – God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.

Mouthful.

Chew that up.

Nom nom.

That’s what I believe. As crazy as that may sound, lol, that’s what I believe.

And it’s great if you do too. It really is. Living a life pleasing to God doesn’t mean you’re a stiff. It doesn’t mean you’re wack or you’re lame. It means, you can acknowledge that there is something, someOne greater than yourself that exists and rules in an invisible world working things out for you in your favor and loves you for you. Suffering on the earth? That’s inevitable. Sickness? A part of life. My mother has often taught me that there is a lesson in every experience in the earth. It’s up to us to acknowledge it, accept it, learn the lesson, and move forward.

Now, don’t get me wrong. This life isn’t easy, breezy, beautiful at times. It can be very frustrating, demanding, time consuming, even boring (if you let it be), but one thing you should always carry with you is hope. Believing in Jesus (and the end results for my life) have been really trying and confusing sometimes, only because I allowed it to be, but having hope in something as extraordinary as Heaven makes it all worthwhile to me.

I posted something like this in 2011 as we reflected on May 21st as judgment day according to one…influencer. The post is, No one knows…not even the Son. Below is what I wrote towards the end of the post. For whatever it’s worth and whoever it’s for, may God’s love always bless you and keep you and never lead you astray. No good thing will He withhold from the upright.

Here goes:

If someone asks you, if you died tonight, where would your soul spend eternity, and you answer Heaven, great…but why?

Please keep reading.

If someone asks you the same question and you are unsure of where (Heaven or Hell)…

Please keep reading.

If your answer was Hell to that question…

DEFINITELY keep reading…

Only because God loves you too much for you to risk your life after death over ignorance.

Because you feel as though you’re “a good person”, doesn’t give you access to Heaven. Because you “feed the hungry”, doesn’t mean you have access to Heaven. Because you’re “nice to your neighbor” doesn’t give you access to Heaven. Because you don’t “gossip or start mess” doesn’t mean you have access to Heaven. The bible shares with us that the only TRUE way to Heaven is by confessing and accepting Jesus Christ as your personal Lord and Savior. Romans 10: 9-10…

9Because if you acknowledge and confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and in your heart believe (adhere to, trust in, and rely on the truth) that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

    10For with the heart a person believes (adheres to, trusts in, and relies on Christ) and so is justified (declared righteous, acceptable to God), and with the mouth he confesses (declares openly and speaks out freely his faith) and confirms [his] salvation.

If you are unsure about how you will spend eternity and/or if you feel as though you would spend eternity in Hell, please pray this prayer with me out loud…

Father God…I come to You as humbly as I know how as a broken and a weak sinner. I recognize and understand that I am blessed to even have this opportunity to come into Your presence. I am so unworthy of Your time. I am so worthy of hell’s unquenchable fire. But because You sent Jesus to die on the cross for my sins, I have hope. I now ask You to forgive me of every sin that I have committed unto You. Every sin that I knew I was committing and every sin that I did not know I was committing, Father please forgive me. I know that I am so undeserving of Your grace and Your mercy, but God I ask that you would please grant me mercy out of the Love in Your heart for Your children. I believe that You sent Your only begotten Son Jesus to save me. You gave Him up to die, be buried, and be resurrected for all of my sins, and God I thank You for that. I now receive Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior in my heart, mind, body, and spirit. I thank You for Your forgiveness. I thank You for Your grace and Your mercy. I thank You for my life and the life of Your Son, and now my brother, Jesus Christ. Father, I ask that You keep Your precious hand upon me and my life and that the blood of Jesus will always protect me from harm. For I believe in Your Word, the words in John 3:16, for YOU so loved the world, that You gave Your only begotten Son. For whosoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life. I thank You for saving me. In the name of Jesus, I pray, Amen.

If you said that prayer out loud and believe it sincerely, you have just received salvation, one of the most blessed gifts of God. I can’t be there in front of you, but imagine me being there and giving you a BIG, GIANT HUG for accepting Jesus as your Lord and Savior!!

Congratulations. It’s official.

We’ll talk soon.

Celebrating your victory,

Rashaad4Real

So, all big dudes are the same?

Okay…I guess ALL big dudes look alike. Seriously. It has to be Fat Boy Syndrome or SOMETHING. Listen…

So, I’m in McDonald’s yesterday right? I’m working and writing and everything and this guy and this girl (race remained hidden to protect the other fools that behave like this) is at this table in front of me. I’m all INTO my work so I’m not paying attention to ANYTHING. So apparently dude had been calling “me” and “I” wasn’t answering so he decides to throw a freakin’ frie at me. Im like… um? He says.. ain’t yo name Aaron? I’m like nah. He said you sure? As if I don’t know MY name. I said yeah man. Then the girl was like oooooh I’m so sorry. They bust out laughing. I do too. I mean, it’s funny. I’m not laughing because he got the wrong guy. I was laughing because I’m like this idiot just threw food at me, something I almost KILLED somebody over in high school. That’s a whole other story. Do NOT ask me about that. I swear I’ll say NOTHING lol.

Then TODAY, same situation, different people. I’m at the SAME Mickey D’s just because. And this group of dudes (race shall remain a mystery) are crowded at this booth in front of me. I’m eating something I shouldn’t be eating since my radio team and I are still in our 100lbs in 100 days Challenge, and after coming back to reality (that indulgence seriously took me out lol – don’t judge me), I hear someone saying, “aye big man. Big man, aye”. I look up and he’s leaning outside the booth trying to see me since his buddy wouldn’t move over. I’m like…yes? He goes didn’t you go to (insert high school name here)? I say… no. I went to Newton. He said you sure? As if I don’t know what high school I went to! Then he asks, did you go to (insert high school number two here)? I say no. He says you sure? I say YES, I’m sure. He then asks for a third time (apparently 3rd time’s a charm in his book) and asks did you go to (insert high school number three here)? I say no man. I went to Newton High School in Covington, GA. Newton County. Covington. You ever heard of that place? He goes… oh, nah. My fault. And goes back to eating.

Like seriously??? LOL. That was HILARIOUS to me. I honestly didn’t know I looked like so fat people OR the SAME one these people are looking for. Unless there’s Fat Boy Syndrome and I’m just now finding out about it. Makes me think of two things. Either they’re looking for this dude I clearly am twins with and about people when they say all White people look alike or all Black people look alike or all Mexican people look alike or all gay people ACT alike, or whatever. I know it was just a harmless mistake, but makes me think about how quick we are to profile someone even when there is no association.

This post wasn’t necessarily important, it was just I had a thought based on my experiences with Fat Boy Syndrome and wanted to share it with you.

To my big brothas out there…does this happen to you? Or was it just ME? Somebody, anybody, help me out. Please. lol.

This isn't what they saw, just me and headphones no hood.

This isn’t what they saw, just me and headphones no hood.

Happy Year

This is my first official post of 2013. I remember when 2012 hit. Everybody went on and on about “It’s My Year” and other outstanding declarations. Well, that bothers me. Even as I sit in my living room and type frantically away, I remember hearing myself “DECLARE” that 2013 was my year..

So was 2012.. So was 2011.. So was 2010..

You get the point.

Now don’t get me wrong. I am in no way bashing New Year Resolutions or banishing “Do-Better lists” from the Milky Way Galaxy, I’m simply sharing my thoughts on insanity – doing the same thing the same way expecting a different result.

From experience, I’ve witnessed countless amounts of people declare this and declare that..and it’s the same EVERY SINGLE YEAR. Why? They haven’t learned their lesson.

I believe that God teaches us in every moment. Especially in moments of pain, disappointment, misunderstandings. We’re human, so to think “because God is on our side” therefore I won’t go through this or that would be unwise. Take in every single moment and realize that He must be about to reveal something to me. You see, the problem I often come across in people is that we ask God for something, He gives it to us, but we don’t ever appreciate how it comes back to us. Well, it’s not that we don’t appreciate it, we just don’t understand that He may answer it differently than which we asked. I’ve never understood people that ask God to get them to a higher place, and for the sake of time let’s say a better job. Then when He starts that process by removing you from the job you have, you complain about being “let go”. How can you expect God to be God when you’re worrying and complaining about a job you just asked to be released from for a better one? When you begin to complain about it then start the job hunting process YOURSELF, you just told God, “listen I know who You are, but I don’t need you on this. I can handle this on my own. I can fill out this application and someone will hire me. It ain’t what I wanna do, but since You got me fired, it’s better than nothing.” We all can agree that taking the initiative after we’ve got the answer to our prayer is the way to go, right? Wrong. Sometimes God reveals something to you so that you can ride on His wind as He blows you into your destiny. Sometimes He wants you to sit back, relax, and enjoy the show. Sometimes He just doesn’t want you to worry.

My point in saying all this is that just because we DECLARE something newer, something bigger, something better every year, doesn’t mean we get it. Why? We’re doing the same thing the same way expecting a different result. There is something, big or small, that He desires to teach us. We can’t move forward unless lessons are learned. We can’t move forward unless old habits are broken. We can’t move forward until we look deep within ourselves and go after what He’s trying to do in us. Take the rest of this month and go deeper. Learn the lesson He’s trying to teach you. He wants you to get it. Once you get it, this is truly your HAPPY YEAR.

Go for it. Happy 2013.

Sweet Heart, Sweet Jesus

Hi everyone.

This post is a little different for me. I’m about to be totally open and honest. For the first time in a very long time I was afraid for my life… I really was.

Back when I was about 13 years old I was at my grandmother’s house in Oxford. My brother and I were playing outside one afternoon when all of a sudden I felt weak. My heart was beating so fast that I thought it was about to explode. I didn’t have the slightest idea what was going on. Was it just from us running around? Was it a heart attack? Was it a stroke? Was it anxiety? I had NO clue.

She called the paramedics and when they arrived, they tossed me (toss: to fling or heave with a sudden slight jerk. Picture that.) into the back of the ambulance and sped off to the hospital. I was already crying because I was scared, but at that point I was about to lose it. All I remember seeing was lights flickering on and off, blue-green-red-white-blue-green-red-white, one paramedic busy sticking sticky things on my chest, the other frantically on the phone screaming some random numbers all the while screaming at the driver to speed up.

Once we got to the hospital they rushed me inside to an emergency room. My heart was still fluttering uncontrollably and my chest seemed to be caving in slowly on top of my lungs. Here I was 13 years old thinking… “I’m about to die. Where’s my mommy?” When they rolled me into the room on the stretcher, the same two paramedics lifted me from the stretcher to the bed. As I plopped down, I knew those would be my final moments. I. Was. So. Scared.

A doctor came in with my aunt and grandmother and told me what was about to happen. I remember it plain as day.

“Rashaad, what I’m about to do is going to make you feel much better.”

I asked, “What are you going to do?”

“We’re going to give you what we call a cardioversion.”

“A cardioversion? What’s that?”

“It’s when we send electrical shock to your heart to start it over. We’re trying to get it back to a normal heart rate.”

“I’m scared. I want my mama”, I said.

“It’s okay to be scared. She’s on her way. Don’t worry. You’ll be fine.”

I only stared at him as he got the system together with his team of nurses. He asked my grandma and aunty to leave the room. The next few words he said to me blew me away. He said,

“Now, this is going to make you feel funny. You’re going to go numb. As we’re resetting your heart, you’re gonna die for about three seconds.”

Wait… What?!

Beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeep.

Flatline.

Is this really happening?

Did I just die?

I’m so dead.

No, I’m confused.

Wait… What?!

Three seconds later… I was back.

My heart was back to normal. I could breathe regularly. My lungs were filling back up with oxygen and I was alive. Thank God.

I learned shortly after that incident that God placed something different on me. Something different by the name supraventricular tachycardia. Say that three times fast.

Basically, supraventricular tachycardia is a heart issue where out of nowhere my heart will spazz out and do its own thing, jumping from maybe 70-80 beats per minute to about 150-300. I lose my breath. I get dizzy. I get weak. Those are just a few of the symptoms or reactions from it. Since the issue back when I was 13, I’ve had several “episodes”. In all, I’ve had about 15 (give or take 1 or 2). I’m writing this today because over the past 2 months, it’s happened 5 times. That’s right. 5 times.

When I first found out I was advised to go to a cardiologist. She advised me that caffeine and chocolate were the main reasons mine was triggered. Here lately, however, I haven’t had sodas, coffee, chocolate, or anything close to it. After doing a bit more research I found out that stress, emotions, and certain movements could play a vital role in SVT as well. I haven’t been stressed as much as before, but I have been battling a few things emotionally.

Today was one of those days where emotions kinda smacked me in the face. Someone said something to me and it sent me into a frenzy. As I mentioned earlier, it’s happened 5 times within 45 days, but today sent me back to when I was 13. It was terribly intense.

For the first time in a very long time I was afraid for my life… I really was.

I laid down. I sat up. I walked around. I bent over. Nothing seemed to be working. I was taught that when it happens I should do the following vagal maneuvers: drink Gatorade (loaded with electrolytes – recharging my heart since SVT deals with my heart’s electrical circuits), cough hard, inhale and hold my breath for a few seconds then exhale hard and grunt, or fill a bowl up with water and ice and dip my face in it. All of those techniques are supposed to aid my heart in resetting itself without the “death” feeling.

Today though, none of those maneuvers seemed to be working. I was home and couldn’t go get my own Gatorade because of the state I was in. I was just a mess. Usually I have my emotions or anxiety under control. I had no control whatsoever today. Usually episodes last about 30 minutes. Today’s was about an hour and a half. The longest ever. I started to panic.

Here I was 9 years later and it was happening again. That scared little boy began to come out of me as I begin to think… this could be it. Then immediately I came to my senses. I took in everything that my mother has taught me since the first episode all those years ago. I could either submit to it and die or I can fight it and live. Today I chose to live. I began to pray. I began to pray for my life. I needed God to save my life. And He did. In spite of what I’ve done wrong, He saved my life.

As I prayed tears began to flow from my face thinking about the victory I was about to win. The devil has been trying to take me out for about 23 years and now he’s attempting to by any means necessary. Now that I know who I am, Who I belong to, and the lives God is going to grace me to change, he’s hot…as hell.

I didn’t write this to preach. I wrote this to be transparent. Although I already know I’ve won the victory, I have to be wise in my living. Because this issue has happened multiple times in a short period of time I’m going to go back to a cardiologist for a check up to be in the “know” of what’s happening with the “lifeline” in my chest. I’m not worried though because I know The Lifeline in my heart will always rule above all.

So in closing (Lord, church is just in me and I can’t get rid of it lol), I just want to say thank you. To everyone that has sincerely prayed for me over the years, thank you. To those keeping me lifted on a daily now, thank you. And to my beautiful mommy, thank you.

I’m so appreciative of this opportunity to share this information with you. I don’t want any of us to take health for granted. Even though you have the victory, be educated on real life issues. The supernatural surpasses the doctor’s orders, but thank God for the doctor’s orders so that we can know what we’re about to be fighting. If you sense anything wrong, speak to it and watch God work. Get a small circle of people you trust that are willing to keep you lifted constantly everyday. Be open. Be transparent. Be real. Tell the physician that although what they say may be factual, they do NOT have the final say. Trust God. And go.

If you feel as though you have no one to pray for you, you don’t have an excuse to feel that way anymore. Talk to me. I’ll cover you. The only thing I ask in return is you cover me too. That way, I can be covered to cover you and you’ll be covered to cover me :)

Anywho, I’ll be sure to keep you guys updated. Thank you again. More importantly, thank you sweet heart and thank You Sweet Jesus. I’m living. Talk soon.

-Rashaad

Sparkle Trailer

Hello good people. Hope your weekend was swell.

The late legendary pop icon Whitney Houston has not been seen on screen since 1996 in The Preacher’s Wife.

Jordin Sparks (Sparkle) and Whitney Houston (Emma)

Now, after only a short period of time following her death, The Voice will be revived and very much alive in the character Emma of the 2012 version of the film, Sparkle directed by Salim Akil (Jumping the Broom, Girlfriends, The Game).

Today, The Today Show premiered the trailer for the film and has generated buzz all across the country. Originally late R&B singer Aaliyah was cast as Sparkle in the early 2000’s but because of her sudden death in 2001, production was placed on hold. So right now, the trailer for Sparkle starring Jordin Sparks is here on my blog for your enjoyment. Please feel free to comment your thoughts on the trailer and also your love and support for the Houston family. The movie will be dedicated to Whitney.

Sparkle, 2012 trailer. Enjoy.