N'DIGO - Stained Glass Window

A time to heal God's earth

A few weeks back, Japan suffered a massive earthquake, the largest yet to hit a major country. Over 10,000 people perished, leaving a spirit of solemness raoming across the entire world. No one can say God was not watching, His hand  of mercy reached down into some rubble where an 80 plus year old grandmother and her grandson was nearly buried alive, but they were found and are living today....surely cheers and tears of joy was heard. Many people were holding on to life  for merely a week and they too, survived.

 The Mayans predict that more earthquakes, natural disasters, violent storms and yes, earth shattering movements will occur leading up to the year 2012, when the whole world is suppose to shift off its axel, then what will we do? Decide to pray like never before?

For me and my household praying daily helps us to better cope with the unusual occurences that happen to us and around the world. No matter who or what happens to people of any nation, country or continent, our prayers are  with them.

 Prayer has always seem to work things out for me in one way or another. Circumstances seem  to move along better,  like a slow windmill on a lonely country side road in the deep south on a very warm summer day, but they move along just the same.  Prayer has a way of clarifying things, putting misunderstood situations, and events in perspective.

Reading biblical text helps me to also visualize how far people of different nations, tribes and ethnic groups coped with natural disasters in the past, many concluded that such goings on  like today's disasters were natural occurences, but biblically, it is reported that such disasters served as warnings from God.

 If that belief is true today, a lot of people need to take heed that something bigger is brewing in the heavenlies, and maybe we all should take a minute or maybe a few minutes to reflect, meditate, pray and take note that today's natural disasters are symbols all humankind should not take lightly.

 Tsaunamis,  earthquakes in Haiti, New Zealand, Japan, horrid floods, electrical storms, hurricanes, tornadoes, and mudslides are all symbols of a higher power at work.  Call it "Mother Nature" or just the universe belching, having an upset stomach, lets face it there must be an explaination for it all, scientifically speaking, if nothing else.

Unfortunately, we see these visual images of what is happening, while its happening via the internet or on our local news stations, but what about what we don't see? Like the tears of little children, mothers, fathers, families being torn apart, commerce being affected and most of all the end of life for so many of all walks of life.

 The time of healing is truly needed, maybe in the hearts of us all. Maybe we should pray a little harder for the entire human race. Imagine if the entire world began praying simultaneously, what a powerful move forthe human spirit.

Hearing  people praying for love to abide; praying for brotherhood among all men; praying for hunger to cease for all people around the world; praying for homelessness to be erased from the earth; prayer for equality to be restored where injustice has had a field day; prayer for harmony, peace and most of all unity among all people around the world; and finally a prayer of forgiveness to melt the hearts of all men, old and young.

 I think with such an influx of prayers falling on heaven's door step that maybe, just maybe, God will heal the land. 


Our time to surrender all

Our world is surely in a sad place these days. Disasters have become as common as a sunrise and a sunset.

Universally, people of all races, ethnicity and, faiths are experiencing trouble on every side. No one, no matter how rich or poor, are not without some form of unexplained heartache. No sign of ease appears to be no where in sight.

Questions by those who fear God are asking "What has happened to this wonderful place God gave His beloved creations? What are people doing to deserve such troubling times as these? Have mankind taken the everyday freedom of their God given life for granted?

Maybe people have taken all acts of life's goodness, like the pursuit of happiness, a pure sense of charity, acts of benevolence, common courtesy, brotherhood and the universal emotion called love for one another, totally for granted. There is a slim possibility many people have been put under the same trance, not to care for anyone but only oneself and, forgotten about what "living life" and "sharing a life with others" really means in this big world we all live in and share.

For some strange reason "sincere mercy" has become a meaningless term these days. It appears that those words are no longer taught, felt, given, received, thought of or practiced by any world system, group or establishment on an ordinary day.

Unfortunately, my dear friends, our world has grown cold, like a dark black and white silent movie, where no one is listening to the warnings of God. Wickedness appears to be a daily vitamin for those who care not and have not a care in the world or for it.

While everyone else is scrappling for survival, forget about having the better things in life; survival seems to be the most valuable commodity. The pain of a dying humanity is being felt in big homes and little homes, wealthy families and not so wealthy families; the poor have always knew how to exist but even the strong are taking cover, hiding from the fall of times.

Like Pharoah did so long ago - thanks to his own self interest and personal greed for more and more, people withered away. Today nation after nation, country after country, state after state, city after city, all are experiencing similar plagues and warnings like long ago from natural disasters, volcanoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, oil spills, mud slides, floods, famine, tsunamias, poor economy, high gas prices, massive homelessness, excessive crime, violence, constant scams, massive takeovers, and even families are being torn apart.

Can mankind provide a simple solution in order to bring humanity back to a sense of normality? As an avid Bible reader, studying lifestyle trends of old, such writings indicated that an escalating sinfulness in the land caused such plagues and eventually the end of times. So what does that analogy say about today's humanity?

After reading how God told Noah to build an ark to survive a forthcoming flood that would end the world after 40 days and 40 nights of rain and, how he obeyed God, gave me a glimmer of hope for our uncertain times.

Apparently the world was such a wicked place even then as mankind boasted and waddled daily about their sinfulness. Being the author of all life, God's plan to begin humanity again with only a chosen few in His back pack ensued with Noah, his family and a zoo of every animal that walked the earth - despite His warnings, even then, man still changed not and rain fail. Are we facing such a time again?

Remembering what my grandmother use to say "If man would turn from their wicked ways, make a sound choice to surrender to God and, ask for total forgiveness, then, will He and, only He will heal the land." When it comes to this world's troubling state, I believe her words are more timely now than ever.

Still gifted and Black

After 400 plus years of pure human bondage, Blacks across America truly deserve a great piece of American dream, rather anyone feel they earned it or not. Forget about those feverish realities perceived as a slave mentality gone mad.

Blacks, I always refrain from saying African Americans, are who they are thexe days, many are good and some are not so good.  Moreover, Blacks are an exceptional people made of God's magnificent wonder. Blacks are no longer coming into themselves by way of any person's good words.

Today's Blacks need no one's approval for existing especially in the land of the so-called free. Blacks are living better lives than their ancestors of 50 years ago. For some feel they will no longer be haunted by grueling statistics decided by any assembly of nerds, who lost out with dating in grammar school or high school, but now lead another pack of wolves for the slaughter in higher, secret places.

I recall being among the young children resounding the strengthening lyrics of the song "To Be Young, Gifted and Black."  What pride would swell among those who walked in their broken in shoes of those days.  We  were young, gifted and yes, Black. We collectively sang a song that helped me and my classmates probably believe that we can do all things, great.  Today, I hear nothing about our young people singing about how great they can be or will be. 

When I was a young girl, all city streets were safer, even our babysitters were law abiding people, who were good to us. Life was good, innocence had a chance to spread her wings. We sang about being young gifted and Black in our school classrooms, each morning.  Our teachers would encourage us, and prepare us for the quest ahead of us, the journey of life. 

Fast forward 30 years....We are not faultless because of what harm our youth have inherited from a declining empowerment session or pep talk no longer shared in classrooms or living rooms. Most parents work two or three jobs to make it or no job at all. So whose smiling in their faces, whose singing I am somebody to them, whose laughing about the goodness of the times? Have we forgotten to hug our young?  Have we touched our young with any finger of love, told them they are wonderful, courageous and the greatest asset to humanity these days? Yes us, who were taught that we are somebody, not so long ago.

What self esteem building tools have we given to them who cry out silently down the street or around the nearest corner? Are we lending hope to the ears and eyes of our youth of today? Television is not the parent nor the answer to their idle moments. Most shows and films portray urban communities as battle grounds where shootings and killings are a way of life.  Subliminally portraying that all young Black men are gang bangers, dope peddlers and killers. 

I ask my young brothers every time I see them walking our bold clean streets of Chicago, "How are you young man?  I tell them "you are blessed to be living in the now, instead of yesteryear." This may sound pretentious, but from my lips to their ears, my words are sincere. I applaud those of their generation who want a taste of the American dream, for continuing on with their personal struggles, for being determined to rise above bad news, bad thoughts, bad press and bad stats.  Statistics that paint them as a sorrowful generation never to make it in this big world. I applaud those who try to better their best. I applaud them  for trying to find their way out the maze of a foolish society.

I bless them like someone blessed me, when I was a young girl. A girl with big dreams and ideas about tomorrow. I pray a collective prayer to enhance their journey - offering a motherly love I guess, confessing that all generational curses of their ancestors be diminished forever in Jesus name. 

And now that the first Black American president is comfortably sleeping in the white house, I realize each day that his face turns no darker nor any brighter because of his title, nor does the people who look like him, who went to the same schools he attended or live in the same Chicago neighborhood where his mansion yet stands. They are still Black and proud to be so.

Blacks are an important people, even to their own people, and even to others who sit in board rooms, councils and in private country clubs.  And for those who live to reject the ideas of Nubian brothers and sisters and their great deeds of the day, they must know that they win no war alone, especially when they wrote the script. I feel that suppressed hate is such a useless guard rail to hold on to, its slippery when wet.

Now that a new rain has come from God's mysterious sky, why not chill I say to the doubters and the haters who cannot see the true rain will continue to fall. I say to them all who hold tight to hate, regret, old ideas, bitter plots,  why not start to read a new chapter in this new millennium, for its already written in the heavens above their heads.

Yes  I say,  read some new history. Turn the page and yes the next, it's rather colorful these days. The young, the gifted and Black have risen, yes the chosen few. Black is now blacker and better than ever, despite our young crying out from behind the stolen wall of truth and justice. And I must add for those who ask," Why me Lord?"  I say know that some of us, who are not arrogant or soiled by success, but  those of us who are smart enough, wise enough, intelligent enough, and spiritual enough, are still praying that one day your idea of the American dream will someday come true too. 

Quote from the "According to Ingrid" diary:

Stop hating so much. Hate is wasted energy, wasted power, and for what? Love is a more peaceful roommate and oh yes a more profound dinner guest. Choose love, it actually weighs less, and gives more.

The death of the American dream

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We must believe again

We are living in uncertain, perilous times where wicked winds blow across our communities  killing our youth. Our babies days of having fun on playgrounds appears to be a thing of the past, for gun shells have taken residence where candy and gum rappers once laid.

We, as God fearing vessels of faith, as a summoned leadership, must believe that this evil phase will one day soon fade away.  The operative term "fade away"  is one we must believe is possible in order to disseminate life's horrid phase we label as "violent times."  

As members of the same godliness, representatives of social service organizations, faith based institutions, as goverment bodies, as neighbors, as parents, and mainly parents, we have much to do to relinquish today's present face of a crying humanity. We, the strong and intelligent ones, cannot give up nor give into this wave of horror that is dancing in our streets across America.

 What if God had given up on His creation when evil ran rapid in the days of King Herrod, or Ceasar, or King Solomon,  or Abraham, or Noah, would we be here to recall His vengence, His mighty works to save humanity?

We say trust God for certain impossible wonders in our lives; better health, a sense of wealth, even necessary food and sustaining shelter, why not trust God to give human kind the means,  ammunition, abilities and most of all, the know how to combat this evil spell of youngsters murdering one another.

In retrospect, today's social illness of murder gone mad has one too many times showed it's face before. Biblically speaking, when Cain killed Abel, the ruthless madness began a kindred fire that has burned century after century, a pocket here and a pocket there.  However, when society began to take a closer look at the moral decay growing around them, when neighbors became more interested in their neighbors welfare, human compassion stood up blowing a different breeze into the world's violence causing it's small fires to grow dim.

This way of life was not so long ago. It was a time when our world was a place where human contact was felt, human fraility was comprehended, yes human compassion had a face, a touch and even a smell. Life was worth dreaming about. People,complete strangers on a park bench shared stories, everyday people on public buses would talk about their hope for tomorrow, somehow they would even dream together as a society. They believed together as a community, an humanity.

Have we gotten so busy we too have forgotten that what affects one, soon affects all? I often speak of this powerful phrase, spoken by the late Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., because every word speaks an universal reality in all arenas, cities and nations around this big beautiful world God gave us.

For instance,  America is not the only country in the world trying to solve it's economic woes,  other strong countries, they too have become affected with such sorrows as the land of the free, high unemployment, stocks declining, housing markets and diminishing banks in grave trouble. What spills in your backyard soon spills in your neighbors backyard right? 

We cannot as civic minded leaders, creative writers, visionaries, philantropist, professionals, and religious disciples, believe that only one group or one class of people is going to continue to suffer from these torrid times, where a perpetual wave of  violence lurks in our streets, around our homes and in our schools. We must believe there is hope for us all, for each other.

We are humane enough, smart enough, able enough to grab this wave of crime and violence  that seems to be growing into epidemic proportions, disturbing our wonderful culture. We can  vaccinate it.  No one individual nor group is immune from pitching in, for the fire is burning us all. 

When a building catches a fire, the building next door also catches fire, if someone does not try to put out the first building's fire. Let us put the fire out one at a time, but collectively, as a stream of firemen usually do.

 If you hug a child, if you talk to a youngster,  if you offer life building words to an assumed bad kid, or choose to tell the school bully he or she is an asset to society,  we have begun to put the fire out, one at a time.

Yes we proclaim that we teach, yes we proclaim that we care, and yes we proclaim that we want to save our youth from a world of crime and constant violence. So let us begin, starting today, maybe holding someone's hand who has not been held with a human touch for  much too long, maybe reaching out to someone's mother who could be hurting inside, or  speaking life to a burdened father.  We can give hope where and when ever we can. We can stand taller as a leaning post instead of as an invisible bystander.

If we cannot solve the problems going on in our streets and communities NOW , what future will we (adults) have, and yes what future will our children have, say in five years?  God is probably asking us all, especially the parents who see no wrong, who appear to do no wrong concerning their young "what do you want for your own child's future and the future of all children everywhere?"

For it is written in the Bible, "Let  no man despise thy youth, but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith and in purity. 1 Timothy 4:12



Is God trying to tell us something?

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Calm your fears, God is watching


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America's youth are crying out

Our young people need us. Their precious voices are literally crying out to us all. Crying from their graves that are dug too soon; juvenile detention facilities that are so unlike a warm home and yes, from their so called residences where they feel overlooked and ill treated by those who suppose to care for them.  They are crying out through the violence, through their early pregnancies, through their overeating and food binges, through their alcohol and drug use, the list is endless. They are crying loud, but do we, the adults of our nation, hear them in our night dreams or remember them in our day dreams?

Our busy schedules, our relentless race for fame, fortune and survival, has left able minded adults, guardians, mothers and fathers, single parent households, without enough stamina, energy or vigor to care for them as the creator of us all intended. Many parents hearts are right, but are the times right, with swelling food prices, high taxes, and very little money to spread around, maybe, just maybe that is why our youth of today are feeling left out. Is today's awful recession a reason for all the anger our youth are displaying and the violent crimes they perform?

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The world heard Haiti's cry

For "There will be great earthquakes, famines and pestilence in various places, and fearful events and great signs from Heaven (Luke 21:11)."

Those of us who are God fearing, speakers of the gospel, shame on you! What possess the human mind and tongue to cast stones upon the people of Port Au-Prince, Haiti who are dying, suffering and fighting to survive an awful devastation of not one earthquake, but a few in the last week or two.

Where has human compassion gone, especially if we are so called vessels of sacredness and holiness? Would the Apostle Paul had spoken such words against God's people before his transformation at Damascus? I mean speaking about curses upon a people, a nation like Haiti.

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Enough already with yesterday's racism

Racial slurs, racial overtones, and racial outburst are running rapid across America's landscape these days. Why are we feeding the race card with so much emotion? Every radio station, news station, even roundtable discussions, are feeding on this topic like a starving child with nothing to eat.

Our world has always consisted of people from all walks of life. People of different cultures, ethnicities, and yes shades, this profound undertaking began at the beginning of time, as far as we know. America the united one, is suppose to represent the united states, a united people. If my english serves me right "united states" denotes, unity, a team or group brought together under one democracy 'at least that is what the Declaration of Independence states when the phrase "one nation under God"  was written.

Had God knew we would make such a fuss about who is what, and why this is that, maybe a different choice of hues would have been used to paint His miraculous wonders better. Who are we to judge, to label His great works, to distort His plan for humanity, to devour any equality or demean or deface any of His prized creations?


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