On the other side of frustration: The Assurance of Jesus

It was at least my 8th time attempting to make things work so I could move on with my work, but sometimes technology has a way of giving up on you especially when it knows you really need it. I had a deadline at work and this particular software chose the wrong day to not function. Did I mention I had a deadline? In my many attempts to make things work before the end of the workday, I was trying everything possible and with each attempt, my patience began to run thin and by my 8th attempt, I was frustrated. With absolutely no control over what was going on, I gave into my frustrations so I slammed my laptop, and slapped my hands over my face to express my frustration. I bet this sounds familiar to most of you, frustration is quite the emotion, right? I oftentimes think of frustration as that annoying deep itch you can’t reach in the middle of your back and if you are without help, you sit there with it in hopes that it will go away and it doesn’t. I want us to talk about the deep itch called frustration and how best we can get through it without losing ourselves.

REcognizing your frustration

I, first of all, would like to confirm with you that you are not the first and certainly will not be the last to experience frustration. Even the people of old were quite frustrated with their lives and situations, just most of us are at times. Frustration has a way of showing up when people are unable to attain what they personally what to fulfill. In the same way, it also in some way makes people feel like they have lost control over their own lives. A perfect example of worldwide shared frustration was with the COVID-19 pandemic. A lot of us experienced many frustrations due to the limitation and little control we had over the course of the pandemic. With these many frustrations being experienced, it was almost impossible to see the other side of our frustrations and be assured by God that things will go back to normal prior to the pandemic.

When we as humans get frustrated we are often consumed by the need to take back control and find stability by whatever means possible, let us face it, we love to be comfortable. We witnessed that a lot during the early months of the pandemic, might I remind you of all the bulk-buying of toilet paper and cleaning supplies (Yikes)? However, when we are frustrated, it is almost like that comfort is taken away from us and then we get so fixated on how we can get back to our comfort without finding the proper help to help us get on the other side of it all. Understandably, we all find ways to cope with our day-to-day frustrations, but there are long-term frustrations, people, still, experience and those types need the help of Jesus in order to get on the other side. Examples of long term frustrations are plenty, but here are a few; persons frustrated from the lack of career fulfillment, persons frustrated from the lack of having a baby after many years of trying, persons frustrated from many failed relationships, persons frustrated from a terminal illness, persons frustrated from the lack of sufficient funds to pay off debt…..I mean the list can go on, but these are some long-term frustrations that need the assurance of Jesus if we ever want to get to the other side of things. Notice how I mentioned “the lack of” in all the long-term frustration examples? I was not writing that just so I could flow with the text, long-term frustration are often times experienced due to the lack of something for prolonged periods of time. Unlike everyday work frustrations that can be fixed by the IT guy or sharing notes with your co-worker, long-term frustrations can be a tough thing to live through, and to some, they may feel impossible to overcome, but can I encourage you? I will share this famous Bible story and I hope it helps you see that on the other side of your frustration is the help and assurance of Jesus you have been looking for. What does the other side of frustration look like anyway?

Jesus ON the other sIDE OF FRUSTRATION

I couldn’t think of a better example of Jesus on the other side of frustration than this Bible story I will share with you. Granted, there are many bible stories that could help us understand that Jesus is our assurance in all things, but this Bible story is still fresh in my mind, you can read it for yourself (Luke 5 v 1-11) or if you are a visual learner like me, watch ‘The Chosen’. Last Saturday I took some time to watch a few episodes of ‘The Chosen’, an amazing Bible story series by the way. If you haven’t watched the show, I highly recommend it, my sister’s in Christ suggested it and I love it! I had a chance to watch the story of Simon Peter the day before his first meeting with Jesus. I liked the visual depiction of Simon Peter’s many frustrations throughout the episode. But there are these two particular scenes that lead me to think about frustration and Jesus. The first scene that got my attention was when Simon Peter was out fishing at night. He like most of us usually decides to take matters into our own hands, the idea of control and the dare need to attain our desires leads us to many frustrating situations just like Peter experienced. Back to the story, with every attempt to cast his net and catch fish, Simon Peter grew more and more frustrated, he frantically cast his nets to no avail, he also had help, but even with the help of his brother and fisherman friends, nothing was caught all night. How many of us just like Simon Peter had the help, but we’re still left with the dealings of our long-term frustrations? Our inability to get to the other side of frustration is not always because we do not have the help, it is because we have placed a limit on how things should happen based on our initial desire to fulfill our goals. This is where Jesus comes in.

Going back to the Bible story, the other scene from ‘The Chosen’ that caught my attention was Jesus meeting Simon Peter right after a very unsuccessful night of taking matters into his own hands. Jesus then notices that the fishermen have toiled all night with nothing caught, he sees their frustration, he then asked if he can use their boat as a pulpit to teach a small crowd by the shore. With their permission, he continues to teach the crowd and once he was done, he asks them about their night, and you guessed it, they express their frustration of being unable to catch any fish. He, Jesus then instructs them to cast their nets again and at his instructions, they cast their nets again. Something miraculous happened, they caught plenty of fish! A night of frustration quickly turned into a joyous celebration for Simon Peter and his friends. How does this relate to us you ask? Think about the many frustrations that keep you up at night, only to wake up to them again the next day. What was Jesus trying to show Simon Peter and the rest of the fishermen? He was trying to show them that he is the assured help to all their frustration. He also showed them that on the other side of frustration is joy, peace, rest, and fulfillment. Their plan was to catch fish at night and that limited them to see that Jesus could help them catch fish during daylight. Jesus took the limits off their initial idea of attaining their goal and idea of control. So what is on the other side of your frustrations that you can actually look forward to? I already mentioned some, but let me list them for you;

  • Peace
  • Joy
  • Rest
  • Happiness
  • Assurance
  • Fulfillment

I hope this encourages you to see the other side of your frustrations, while I know the reason for your long-term frustration still lingers, there is a much better path you can take. The limitless path Jesus has set up for you. As cliche as this may sound, I feel like it is okay to say this right now, let go and let God! Here is the perfect assurance from God to you while you make your way to the other side of your frustrations;

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” 

Matthew 11 v 28- 30

All! not some…the verse says ALL should come to God with their frustrations and he will give them rest. Now that is a blessed assurance! I will end by saying these words, trust God by his word, and listen to his instructions especially when you get frustrated. God knows there is another side to all your frustration and wants you to see it. It is time for you to take your rightful place! It is time to trade thorns for crowns.

Much Love,

Xholiwe

Holding on to Hope: Why hold on?

“I am sorry, mom is no more” My aunties sat close by me as they told me this and waited for my reaction. Denial quickly set into me and I asked, “what do you mean mom is no more?” then the news settled, my mother just passed away. I went into a panic and began to cry frantically, but that was not my state a few hours before this devastating news. A few hours before this I was holding on to hope that my mother would be healed from that illness. I said a prayer before taking a peaceful nap and held on to whatever small hope I had left, but this news killed the little hope I had stored up. I was hoping for a different outcome, but it quickly began to feel unfair and I remember thinking why did I even hope. Why did I hold on to hope when the situation was hopeless? What did the little hope I held on to do for me? I know those are a lot of questions, but I want to share on what holding on to hope can do for you even in the most hopeless situations.

I did a little research on Google and asked Google how many times the word hope is mentioned in the bible. Well, Google doesn’t know it all, but from the few numbers that came up it is at least over a hundred times across the different versions of the bible that the word hope is mentioned. It gave me much reason to understand the significance of holding on to our hope, I am certain that when God mentions a word over a hundred times, then we should know what it means to him. Hope like many other words gives so much meaning to one’s life, to many of us it is a core of our continued will to stay alive. Our plans, aspirations, desires, goals just to mention a few are encompassed by the word “hope”. As christians we find our confidence, strength and motivation is in the things we hope for. Let hope not be mistaken for a wish, hope is holds much weight than a mere wish. Hope is literally a pushing force that ignites our faith and gives us much reason not to quit. The unforeseen power of hope is that it is the peaceful reassurance even in the midst of a hopeless situation. That is why we must hold on to it knowing that in our hope there is reassurance that whatsoever the outcome, things are going to be just fine. I look back now to when I was told the news about my mother’s passing and think to myself, it was my hope that helped me endure the grief and loss of my mother. Also, it is now hope that reminds me that hopeless situations are not all the way hopeless if you hold on to whatever little hope you have left.

Anchored in hope

The purpose of an anchor is to keep something from moving, to stay grounded. When we are anchored in hope even though we did not get that positive outcome we wanted, our anchor sets us up to stay grounded in our belief in God and also reminds us that it will not always be this way. We hold on to hope knowing that our hope will see us through several other difficulties we may face in the future and we will not be shaken. Understandably, we have been faced with some difficult times in our lives, it could be the loss of a loved one, loss of opportunities to better our lives, just to mention a few. In those difficult times we have hoped and prayed for a positive outcome, only to be faced with a different outcome. Hope after the different outcome is what builds us up to persevere this halt or set back we are face to face with. It is important to stay anchored in such difficult times before we drift away into despair.

Why hold on?

The big question is why should we hold on to something that is not even certain? We hold on because our hope is the essence of our continued lives lived on Earth. By holding on we save ourselves from going into to despair (a state of hopelessness) from the many struggles we face and will face in the future. Have you ever met a person that let go of hope and you saw their despair? they don’t have to verbally say it because it could be felt. Despair just like many other undesired feelings comes because we let go of our hope. Therefore, holding on to our hope is important because it is what pushes us keep going on in this life long journey filled with many twists and turns. Again, holding on to hope is where you find your strength, you peace and your willingness to keep going despite all things. So hold on to it!

GOd and hope

You know I will not write a whole blog post without quoting the bible verse that speaks of hope and like the church girl I am, I find such joy in reading this verse over and over again especially when I feel like I am losing hope or I am getting low on faith.

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

Hebrews 11 v1

Hope brings about faith, both things that God desires we have in our lives. While we hope, we build our faith, is that not amazing? why not hold on to something that actually builds even greater faith within you for the things unseen. I believe God wants us to hold on to hope for several reasons, but mainly for him to fulfil his promises over our lives. God knows that our hold gives us confidence to even overcome the next (2 Cor 3:12). Another amazing thing about hope is that it brings us peace and joy (read Proverbs 10 v 23). It doesn’t end there, remember what I said earlier, hope is our anchor (read Hebrews 6:19). All the good comes from us hold on to hope, and that could be even the smallest hope you have left in you. hope anyway because;

For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees?

Romans 8 v 24 (ESV)

We are saved in our hope! Let that sink in the inner depth of your soul, especially if you have been not been doing well with holding on to your hope. If we saw it all we would hope, but then like the verse says, who hopes for what he sees?

In ending this post, I urge you to hold onto your hope in God, in your life, for your family, for your aspirations and for your healing (we are need it, trust me). Fight your way out of despair and hope again. What brought you to despair was not meant to keep you there and leave you there. There is hope in the things unseen and yours is to pick up on that hope and hold on to it and never let it go. It is time for you to take your rightful place! it is time to trade thorns for crowns.

Much Love,

Xholiwe

Commitment Issues: You made the decision, now what?

Crowned Royals!! Greetings! Greetings! and many more greetings! This is to make up for all the months that have went passed without my hellos. I hope you are well and are using everyday to trade those thorns for crowns. Forgive my silence, I used most of my time away to catch up with travel, something that makes me feel connect to the world and absolutely love. Last year was pretty hard for a travel junkie like me because of the travel restrictions due to the pandemic, but I am thankful to God I got to see a few places this summer. My last blog was about making decisions and I wanted to pick up where I left off and tie this bow up. Decisions are often followed with commitment, and while making decisions can be easy, commitment to those decision can be hard. Just like you, I have made the decision and struggled with the commitment, so how can we deal with our commitment issues?

Did you notice the blog photo I settled for captures two wedding bands? I couldn’t think of any other form of commitment that holds so much weight than marriage. Yes, I know 50% of marriages end up in divorce, but before that happened two people decided to commit to it and along the way for various reasons, things changed. No, this is not turning into a relationship blog, but keep the idea of this type of commitment to your decision making and commitment as we unpack together. Many of the decisions we make whether small or major require some level of commitment, but what happens when we fear commitment to those decisions? we run into commitment issues! What are commitment issues?

commitment issues

Commitment issues can stem up from several places, it would be fear based off past experiences or difference in opinions. When someone is having commitment issues, most of their decision making can be based off a fear of the unknown. The fear of the unknown raises the question of what ifs….The danger to this is that we could be making the right decisions, but would be unable to accomplish because of our commitment issues, hence limiting ourselves. For example, I watched a BBQ show sometime ago on Netflix and one episode told a story of a young man from a little town in the South that was good at barbecuing. His barbecue joint was in the family for many years and passed down to him and he would also train his son to take over the business after him. He know his place was good and people in the bigger city would want to have a taste of his amazing food, however, his family feared for him to move to a bigger city and that eventually made him fear as well for years. He would be offered an opportunity to expand his business, but would decline it and not commit even though he wanted to. After some years, he finally got the courage to commit to his decision to move to the bigger city and he never looked back. He grew his business in the big city and investors invested into his eating place all because he committed himself to his decision. Perfect happy ending right? What if he decided to stay in the small city and allowed his commitment issues to limit his reach? We would be telling a different story and that story would not be as great as what changed for the young man. While we are not facing the decision to move our eating places to a bigger city, we are still facing some decisions we are having a tough time committing to due to our commitment issues.

Why Commitment?

Ever heard of someone not committed to anything accomplish something significant in their lives or that of others? I will wait. I bet you haven’t, but we hear many stories of those that commited and accomplished much. Commitment is an action and if one struggles with commitment issues that means that decisions are made without action or intention to commit.

Imagine with me for a second, Jesus’s commitment to die on the cross for us…significant right? but imagine if he dealt with commitment issues, what would have that meant for us? But Jesus was commitment till the very end even with the process, the pain and the sacrifice. The whole point of commitment is not giving up. What makes it so difficult for us to commit to a decision that will be for our good? While there are several excuses and reasons we can use to justify our lack of commitment or fear of it, what then do we do when our commitment issues contribute to our constant draw back? T.D Jakes said this “you cannot conquer what you are not committed to.” Many of us want accomplish this change in our lives and all that is good to manifest in our lives, but have we ever thought the reasoning behind us not accomplishing is due to our struggle with commitment issues. We want the good [insert your heart’s desire], but the good cannot be achieved if we don’t commit to our decision. Here is why you should commit;

  1. Your commitment pleases God
  2. Commitment helps build your character
  3. Commitment makes you accountable for your own progress, errors and corrections
  4. Commitment makes dreams a reality
  5. Commitment is rewarding when you put in the work
  6. Commitment pushes you to succeed

Still need more reasons to convince you to commitment to your decisions? I don’t have to go have far. Just think of the many things that you have limited yourself of accomplishing by allowing your commitment issues to hold you back. I get it, I too have had some things that I convinced myself out of because of the fear that came from my commitment issues. Just like you I have had my many excuses that were backed up with detailed reasoning, but at the end I still was the one that lost. Many of us are losing because we are afraid, and if we were to all critically look at our lives we would see that our loses are coming from our lack of commitment.

GOD AND COMMITMENT

As a kid we used to sing this song ‘No Turning Back’ in Sunday school and to be honest it didn’t mean much to me until I understood my commitment to God. The words to the song are pretty simple… I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back… I interpret the words to this song as commitment. We decide to follow Jesus and not turn back, almost like how Jesus said that no man will put his hand to the plow and looks back (Luke 9 vs 62).

Our commitment to God pleases him. He desires our commitment to him and all that is about him. He exemplifies commitment by allowing his son Jesus to die for us. Jesus his beloved son he gave to us because of his commitment to free set us. He shows us that commitment issues do not help us accomplish something significant by this very act. Understand that it is very easy for our commitment to God to easily also affect our other commitments in different areas your lives. For some it starts there, at least for me it did! It starts with knowing that you are committed to a God that is also committed to you and has your best interest. God has your best interest, he too wants to see you accomplish based off your commitment. The good part about all this is that God wants us to commit to him whatever we do and he will help! Don’t believe me? here is some word for you;

“Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and he will establish your plans”

-Proverbs 16:3-

Rather than constantly being with the fear of committing to your decision alone, why not make the commit to the Lord and find your strength even when fear wants to give you an excuse or reason to quit. He being God will help you establish you plans, but you have to stay committed.

I will end by saying, there is nothing you accomplish when you allow commitment issues to limit your reach, growth, change etc. There is however, much to be accomplished with you deciding to fully commit to your decision in the good and in the bad. You continue to trust the process and fight off the fear that comes from your commitment issues. It is time for you to take your rightful place. It is time for you to trade thorns for crowns!

Much Love,

Xholiwe

Schooled by experience: What a book can’t teach you

Greetings Crowned Royals! I hope all is well with you and your loved ones. I am so excited to write again this week and share with you what has been on my mind of late. Writing on failure last week made me think of something closely related, but a much border topic that we will unpack together. While Failure falls under the entire scope of our life experience, it literally is a small segment of it when we think of our many life experiences and how they shaped us to be who we are today. There is a famous quote that says experience is the best teacher and I couldn’t agree any more. Experience teaches us things about us that the books can not even explain. Being schooled by experience is far more complex and it demands more of your character than it does our intelligence. So, what makes experience the best teacher hands down? To answer this question, think of your own experience; the lessons, the rewards, the surprises, the tests, the uncertainties, fears and how all of that helped shape you to be the person you are today.

What is it like to be schooled by experience

Being schooled by experience is like going on a experimental roller coaster ride blindfolded without any idea on when the highs and lows will hit you. You will be met with many highs and many lows along the way, yet you stay on the ride and hopefully pay attention and take some notes because there will be tests after each ride. When you being schooled by experience, you will notice how you are not being asked to memorize knowledge, but you are rather required to apply the knowledge to your life experience. It is very hands on and practical type of school experience.

Another thing you will notice while being schooled by experience is that comparing and copying off others life experiences will not work so well for your own. Life experiences are told differently by everyone because of how we handle the lessons taught from our highs and lows. Not everyone handles these lessons well, and maybe you haven’t done so well either other times when handed these lessons, but your work and effort to do better is a choice you make for yourself. Doing all of this is not an easy task, so teaching tools such as books can help better prepare for while being schooled. While books are a great teaching tool, they can only go so far in helping us mature than actual experience can do.

BOOKS as a Teaching tool

If you are not reading a book that will help your current life situation, please read something! God has blessed many people to write books on different aspects of life and he gave us his word the Bible that touches on every aspect on life. Books are a great teaching tool that provide you with insight and practical examples. From books we learn that we are not the only ones experiencing life’s highs and lows. The only thing the book can’t teach us is how to learn from our own unique experience. We have books that will help us learn and understand our situations better, so that even as we experience, we go in somewhat prepared. A book will give you a general overview, instructions, advise and commend you, but the work starts when you apply the knowledge of and make it practical for to your own experience. Here is what a book CAN NOT teach;

  • Your own unique purpose
  • Your resilience and tolerance during your lows
  • How to handle your own success and failures in life and move on
  • Your own perspective over your life
  • How to be patient and kind to yourself as you experience life
  • The choices you make and made had a huge impact on your life

EXPERIENCE as a teacher

Can we all admit that experience has thrown us some harsh lessons, I mean really harsh that for some of us it changed our way and meaning of life. Experience is the teacher that most of us wish we did not have to take a class with them or maybe skip a couple lessons and still expect to pass. Wrong! As you experience life more, you will soon realize that there are no redos or make up tests like it was in school. Life experiences are about how well you handled the highs and lows and what you learned along the way is more valuable than you can imagine. Experience as a teacher has the ability to wipe us into shape and despite some painful lessons we would be thanking it later. Experience teach us that success is good and so is failure. We will be faced with many tests and as we continue to learn, but experience as a teacher cheers us on to keep going and growing in the process. Experience will teach us the valuable lessons of life that we can then use to help others that continue to struggle. Once you are schooled by experience you will soon learn the important of every high and low in your life and not take it for granted. Here is what experience WILL teach you:

  • Your own unique purpose
  • Your resilience and tolerance during your lows
  • How to handle your own success and failures in life and move on
  • Your own perspective over your life
  • How to be patient and kind to yourself as you experience life
  • The choices you make and made had a huge impact on your life

God and experience

God created us to experience life in its fullness, he knew that we will experience all the highs and lows and was confident that we would through the process learn who we are and not quit on life because of it. For some of us, our experiences helped align us back to God’s will for our lives. We had to take those hard and painful lessons to be able to come back to where we should have been in the first place. God like any loving parent helps correct us through our experience and while the lesson was not pleasant at first, we were surely grateful. He used our experience for our good. God used our experience for our good! Let us see what scripture says:

No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

Hebrews 12 vs 11

To be trained by experience is good! There is a harvest that comes with you staying the course and making the choice to grow and transform from your own life experiences. Allow yourself to be trained by the best teacher and while you are at it utilize books and study the word of God. With that said, I hope you can now see that being schooled by experience is not such a bad thing after all. Through the entire process you get to learn who you are and understand why your experience was tailor made for you.

It is time for us to take our rightful place, it is time to trade thorns for crowns!

Much Love!

Xholiwe

Knotted: The emotional process of un-knotting painful ties

Hello Crowned Royals, Happy New Year to you all! I hope each and everyone of you are doing your best work to attain your crowns. If you asked me what your number 1 resolution should be, I would say attain your crowns and the rest will fall into place.

I was hoping to have written this blog earlier in the year because in the beginning of the year, most people are open to change so hope I am not too late. I want us to talk about knots, not the knots you see on the features image, but the painful knotted ties within us. We continue to do life while knotted with painful ties, which we have a tough time admitting to the emotional roller coaster they put on us. I hope this blog will help you realize that it is possible to un-knot those ties, and also be well aware of the emotional process that comes with un-knotting.

If you have ever been knotted in painful ties then you know that it feels impossible to get out of it, especially if the people or situation is something that changed your life drastically. Breaking of ties while knotted can take you from feeling frustrated, to sad, to angry, to restless, but at least if you have already began the process of un-knotting, you are off to a good start. I liken the emotional process of un-knotting to my constant battle with my knotted necklaces in my jewelry box. I think the ladies can agree with me, when jewelry gets knotted it also feels impossible to pull apart. I realized from the many un-knotting I had to do with my necklaces that if my patience was short, I got angry and frustrated, which lead me to quitting pretty quickly in the process. Even though that was the jewelry piece I wanted to compliment my outfit, I quit on separating it from the other because of the process it took. why was I quick to quit? Well, I think the patience and my emotions got the best of me and did not allow me to finish what I started, which would have eventually benefited me. I know this a trivial example compared to un-knotting actual painful ties in our lives, but isn’t that what we do? We being to un-knot hurriedly things that need time and patience, and because it did not happen quickly we then begin to go through the roller coaster of emotions. Once we allow for these emotions to get the best of us, we are unable to see the many knots we missed and continue to live knotted. Why do we then settle for a knotted life?

Living a knotted life

If you have ever known a life lived knotted then you will know that it is not one you can say you are living your best life. But why are so many knotted people claiming to live their best lives? Hmm, I can give you several reasons, but the first one that jumps out of my mind is denial. We as human tend to think by denying painful ties that they magically disappear, unfortunately, those things only happen in fairy tales. What we go through and experience in our life’s is real and can not be ignored. The knotted life is a life lived in constant denial of one’s reality. What denial does is that it takes away from the person’s ability to recognize that there are painful ties that they need to knot out if they want to live a better life. I know of the knotted life because I once lived it and let me tell you, it is no way to live. It is quite sad to know that many of us continue to live the knotted life and have normalized it because not many of have taken up the task to actually got through the process of un-knotting. But if you are one that is tired of the knotted life like I was, then I think it is time to go through the process head first and not to quit when it gets hard. Because it will get hard at some point, but quitting shouldn’t be you option.

The emotional process of un-knotting painful ties

Now that we know that the knotted life is not the way to live and have decided to un-knot it all, what can we expect? Well, we expect ourselves to go through one tedious and intense emotional process that in the end will give us a life lived with no denial. If you won’t come ready for such an emotional process, then you will be quitting even before it begins. Painful ties are not just little issues that you had with a co-worker that can be cleared over a cup of coffee. Painful ties are things that come with intense emotion and pain and for some those ties changed their lives and how they live. It may be the painful ties with a memory of losing a loved one, ties with failed relationships (intimate, family and friends), and ties with guilt from a situation that was not even your fault that changed it all.

The process to un-knotting all this will take you up and down with your emotions, but as you go through it you are not to allow your emotions to get the best of you. Emotions in the process are inevitable because what tied you up in the first place was associated to an emotion. Once you allow emotions such as anger, frustration, shame etc to get the best of you through the initial process of un-knotting, the process will be much harder, but that is no reason to quit. Are you allowed to feel these emotions as you un-knot? Absolutely! But do you dwell on them? No. You step by step begins to un-knot by letting go of the emotion associated to the painful ties. For example, you were angry that your father abandoned you at a young age. In this process you un-knot by letting go of the tie associated with the anger you felt as a child when your father left. The emotional process will mostly ask for you to look back to past events, remember certain people you chose to forget, feel the pain again and almost re-live what you have been in denial of, but it is all necessary and all part of it. Because this is a tedious and intense emotional process, you can’t do this alone. who will help you through this process?

Where is God in this Process?

God is glad that you have decided to go through the process of un-knotting the painful ties in your life. If anything, God is glad you have come to the realization that living a knotted life is not as fulfilling. God has been in the process even before your realization. He is one that is always waiting on us to take that first step and commit to the process. Once committed God is right next to you even through the emotions that are associated with the painful tie. He will send you help too, people that will help you through this process. You are not alone! God knows exactly how the painful ties make or made you feel. He knows the emotional toll it took on you to be tied up in such pain. Therefore, he knows how to help you un-knot through each step of the process. How do you get help? just like any tied up wounded solider, you cry out for help and seek the help of the Lord through your prayer to him. Like I said before, he has been in the process even before your realization. Call on him! Here is some scripture to remind you that you are not alone in this process God says:

…Never will I leave; never will I forsake you

Hebrews 13:5

That is God’s promises for you and me, that even through this process he is with us. The process is indeed tedious and intense, but knowing that you don’t have to do it alone is much reason for you to take on the challenge. You can not afford to quit and miss out on a life that is filled with the peace and presence of God. A life lived un-knotted! Now that is living your best life! But it does come with a process that you must be willing to take all the way. I know you can do it! It is time for you to take you rightful place. It is time for you to trade thorns for crowns!!

Much Love,

Xholiwe

The Dangers of Hidden Emotions

Hello crowned Royals, I hope you are all doing well despite all that is going on in your personal life and the world right now. I hope you continue to take your position and stand firm knowing that God is with you through it all. For the past couple of weeks, I have been thinking of the complexity of our emotions as humans and how easily they can damage us when kept hidden from others and ourselves. You know what I mean right? Think of the times you had to hide your sadness from others because you feared being judged or maybe the time you masked your bitterness with a smile so life could feel normal for just a day. As humans, we are often dealing with our emotions on a daily basis and how we experience them can be a challenge for most of us. The challenge is not with desirable emotions such as happiness, but it is with the least desirable emotions such as sadness, anger, jealousy, bitterness, disgust, shame, guilt, fear. While it is quite easy to display happiness, joy, and laughter, the other undesirable emotions are often kept hidden. Why do we do that? Well, there are several reasons, but two main reasons are; we hope no one sees them expressed in us and two, we don’t want to see us express these undesirable emotions. The posed danger is hidden emotions from yourself, which we do consciously and unconsciously. So, what are the dangers that come from your hidden emotions?

At the very beginning: Where did it all start?

I would like to think every habit we adapt to had to start from somewhere. When is the time you began to hide your least desirable emotions from others and yourself? Let us think back to when were children for a second, we were expressive of almost all our emotions both good and bad. We displayed our face of disgust when our parents fed us vegetables, we threw huge tantrums to convey our anger when our parents didn’t give us what we wanted and cried tears of sadness when our mother left without us. So, when did it become hard to convey these emotions? Is it when your parents said you are growing up and you needed to cry less or compose yourself more? Or is it when your sad tears seemed to irritate your peers and you began to understand the complexity of other’s emotions towards yours? It had to start somewhere and where is started can be anywhere that those least desirable emotions began to be hidden. A perfect example I could think of was from the movie Frozen. There is a scene at the beginning of the movie between Elisa and her parents that we may or may not relate to. Elisa was told by her parents to conceal and not feel (in other words, not be expressive) and that poor girl was haunted with these hidden emotions for way too long. We are in some shape or form have just like Elisa concealed and not felt for way too long. So again the question is, where did it start?

Triggers

I would like to believe we all have emotional triggers. If you have lived quite a bit in this world, there are several triggers that can stir up different emotions. It can be something that someone says that takes you back to that painful experience or something that you watch that is relatable to your situation. It can happen in many different ways, but when something triggers our undesirable emotions, we try to conceal and hide. But how long can you do that before you have an outburst and all the hidden emotions unravel at one time? Sometimes it just takes one trigger to have you lost it because you have bottled up so much for way too long. I get it, been there, and done that and it only took one emotional trigger to bring to the surface all that was hidden for way too long. Was it necessary? absolutely! All that unexpressed anger, sadness, panic, bitterness, and fear had to get out if I want to be liberated from it all. I would imagine that you would want the same thing for yourself too. Nothing is more liberating than being honest with how you feel or felt from the situations you experienced.

7 dangers of Hidden emotions

What we do to ourselves when we hide our less desirable emotions can harm us in the long run. We are created to feel, and God knew exactly what he was doing when he put these emotions in us. Suppressing them only can lead to bigger mental issues such as depression, major anger issues, extreme fear and anxiety just to mention a few. Listed below are 7 of the dangers you are likely to face your hidden emotions;

  1. Immaturity: You inability to fully master your emotions and unable to identify a healthy way to express them. If you are constantly hiding them, how do you mature your expression of them?
  2. Instability: The danger of unstable decisions can lead to long term consequences that could have been avoided.
  3. Self-Sabotage: Ruining almost every good thing in the fear that you will have to expose things about yourself to others.
  4. Regret: Constantly replaying past situations that make you wish you did something different.
  5. Stagnation: Being stuck in the past, constantly unable to move forward because there are still some unresolved issues within you that you have kept hidden.
  6. Isolation: Choosing to be alone and missing out on healthy human relationships.
  7. Resentment: You resent others for things you did not communicate. You also resent yourself, which I think is more tragic.

If you have been noticing some of these dangers in your life, then it means it may be about that time that you feel what you have avoided feeling for way too long. It may be time to dig out all the hidden emotions you hide behind a smile. The good thing is that if you are not open yet to express this to others or lack healthy support, God is always ready to listen and allow you to express those emotions. Here is what he has to say to you;

10 So then, banish anxiety from your heart

    and cast off the troubles of your body,

    for youth and vigor are meaningless.

Ecclesiastes 11 v 10

Banish all anxiety that you have built up from all the hidden emotions. Cast off the troubles and go boldly before the Lord. Speak to God about it in prayer. This is a good place to start better communicating your emotions. Emotions are not a bad thing! Even the bible says get angry, but don’t sleep anger. The bible also talks about different times in the book of Ecclesiastes and emotions are mentioned too. We are human, we are far from perfect. God knew perfectly well what he was doing when giving us these emotions. Being the compassionate God that he is, he is able to turn those least desirable emotions we consider bad to good. He does however require our honesty and openness to him. I pray you see the beauty in opening up from those hidden emotions and finding liberty in finally being expressive in a healthy way. It is time for us to take our rightful place! It is time for us to trade thorns for crowns.

Much Love,

Xholiwe

Never settle: Escaping Dysfunction

Hello crowned royals! I hope you are all doing well and staying steadfast in the Lord. What a year 2020 has turned out to be right? Huge sigh. However, I can’t help it but imagine that God is up to something that will bring ultimate healing for not just us as individuals, but an entire nation! Now that is some good news! Well, what I would like to talk about as per usual is individual healing. Part of individual healing comes from never settling, settling can mean many things to different people, but this time around I want you to look at from the lenses of dysfunction. Ever worked with a tool or appliance that did not work like it should? I have! I once used a loosened hammer that broke of the handle and hurt my foot a couple of times. Also, fairly recently I have tried to make a rice cooker work when clearly the appliance has been exhausted and I would need to buy something new. Can you tell what I was doing to myself while operating these dysfunctional items? I was constantly hurting myself and not producing. Could I have do things differently? Absolutely! While, this may not make sense to some, this may make sense to some of you that have constantly settled in a life of dysfunction and have had enough. For this blog I want us to ask ourselves this question, what have you settle for that is dysfunctional? The other question is, how do you escape?

Never settle in dysfunction

The idea of dysfunction may not reside in one’s mind as a call for making a difference or changing the narrative, but rather most of us have normalized dysfunction and sadly even settled in it. Dysfunction by simple definition is abnormality or something not operating normally or properly. Take a minute to think about any situation in your life that you consider abnormal and check yourself to see if you have settled. Have you told yourself that is just the way it is? and eventually have concluded by saying what there is no point of changing things. Then you have clearly chosen to settle. You have settled in dysfunctional relationships, dysfunctional work places, dysfunctional churches and the list is endless? I totally get you, I have been in a place in my life where dysfunction seemed normal. I settled quite a few times then after a couple cycles around the same situation, I believe I got fed up and had enough and hence my desire for change grew even more. Remember that hammer I talked about earlier? How it constantly would hurt me because it was dysfunctional? If the hammer was tightened to the handle that held it and operating normally, then I wouldn’t have be constantly hurt from it. One way to know that you have settled in dysfunction is how constantly you are hurt from a situation, but go right back to it. Doing this all the time eventually can lead you to repeated cycles of dysfunction that can easily make you believe that nothing can change. However, God calls us to make that change and never to settle. God being a God who knows no confusion will not operate in the dysfunction you have settled in, but rather he calls you out of dysfunction and brings you out from the places you decided to settle. There is more that comes from the liberation of never settling in dysfunction. I am talking about more peace, love, joy, rest, hope and assurance. If you were like me and you had enough, then it may be time to plan your escape.

Escaping dysfunction

How do you escape something that you have already normalized and settled in? I wish there was an easy way out, but because of my own experience I can assure you it may be the toughest thing you have to do, but it is totally doable! First of all, don’t let others talk you out of escaping dysfunction. Secondly, which I think is the most important is that you don’t allow yourself to talk yourself out of it. Think about how many times you came to the realization that things just didn’t seem right, but you went on with it anyway. Think back to the many years that constantly brought you hurt and this time commit to planning your grand escape. For this you will need a whole lot of Jesus and a hint of will power if you want to see a difference in your life or change the narrative. Below are a few steps to get you positioned and ready to find normality from what has been abnormal in your life and that eventually led you to settle:

  1. Do your research; what is normal and what is abnormal? This could be in any area of your life. For example, what does a normal healthy relationship look like and compare that to a dysfunctional relationship.
  2. Examine yourself; What have you settled in that is dysfunctional. This is where you can write things down and read them back to yourself.
  3. Recognize and reflect; This is the part where you ask yourself why you settled in dysfunction. This can be a painful process because you may have think far back and see very similar cycles that have surrounded you even as a child. This may or may not include family cycles much similar to yours.
  4. Acceptance; This is so important and people often skip this and think living in denial will fix all the dysfunction. The elephant is the room is staring your right in the face. Acceptance will help you identify those specific areas.
  5. Prayer and commitment; If you are not praying and committing to this escape then all the other steps will be pointless. Prayer still works! Ask God to help you escape and commit to getting out by any means necessary.
  6. Pick your support; Who will remind you to keep putting the effort? Get yourself around people who either have escaped dysfunction or are doing exactly what you are trying to do. Pull from each other strength and courage to escape dysfunction.

While these steps are not scientifically proven, I speak based off my personal experiences of escaping dysfunction. I know what it feels like to reach at your wits end and literally start to desire a clear escape that will give you peace of mind. Like I mentioned earlier, it is not easy, but when God gets involved and you are positioned, you will see the change! Here is some scripture for you as you being to escape dysfunction;

You will not have to fight this battle. Take up your positions; stand firm and see the deliverance the LORD will give you, [insert your name here]. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Go out to face them tomorrow, and the LORD will be with you.

2 Chronicles 20 v 17

I pray that you begin to desire normalcy in your life and also clearly identify what your have settled for. I pray you make your escape from dysfunction and find the peace of mind from finally deciding to make a change. I hope you see that your life can be different and more fruitful because of your decision to no longer settle in dysfunction. I disagree with you, it is not just how it is, you can no longer settle. Look to the Lord for help and escape that dysfunction. It is time for you to take your rightful place! It is time to trade thorns for crowns.

Much love,

Xholiwe

The Villain in the story: Why them?

The villain lurks into your strengths and weakness so that you never see the attack coming.
Xholiwe

Hello Crowned Royals! I don’t know if you feel like I feel, but I have one question for January 2020 “What’s with the rush?”. I am guessing not everyone will feel the same, but January is almost gone and there is still a lot more to do. On a less shocking January note, I was hoping to talk to you all about villains in the story. I am a huge Disney fan in case you don’t know, so I am heavily invested in many stories that Disney shares through film. One common element that creates the perfect story line is the villain. Often times the villain is overlooked, but surely they play a vital role in each story. In a Disney movie, there is no guessing what is good and evil. The villain’s intentions, motives and desires seek to destroy that which is good. The good characters in the story seek to overcome the evil caused by the villain. I hope you know where I am going with this regarding your own life. While your story is far from the perfect Disney fairytale, you can agree with me that you have in some point in your life come face to face with the villain in your story. My question for the sake of this blog is, why them?

what is the role of the villain in your story

The distinct role of the villain in your story is to distort what you deemed to be the life you were supposed to live. Like an interruption to your perfect story line, the villain comes suddenly without your knowledge. The villain lurks into your strengths and weakness so that you never see the attack coming. They study your strengths and your weaknesses so that they know exactly where to interrupt you in your story. While you think it is a sudden attack, the villain carefully crafts their attack that range from days to years. The attack is one that can destroy all that you considered your life be and then later it doesn’t make sense to live. Realize that the motives and desires of the villain like I mentioned earlier are to destroy that which is good. Now that we know the role of the villain, let us answer this question; why them?

Question: Why them?

Just like most Disney stories and even some great Bible stories, the question that still lingers is why them? It could have been a stranger that barely knows us, but usually it never turns out that way. It is the people closest to us that know our weaknesses and have mastered our strengths that turn out to be the villain. The perfect example is from the Lion King, my all time favorite movie from Disney. So the villain in this great story line is not just a regular lion that is part of the pride, but Mufasa’s brother and Simba’s uncle Scar. Scar desires the throne, but since he knows it is impossible he creates his own narrative that destroys the lives of others. Scar knew more about his brother and nephew than any other regular lion would, so he used the knowledge he had to craft his attack. The unfortunate truth is that the people that know more about you are most likely the ones that end up being the villains. For some it may have been that uncle that knew you were vulnerable and raped you. For others it may have been that step mother or father that abused you. For majority of us, it was the people we chose to trust and they turned out to be the villain in our story. So why them? Why is it the ones that we love? The ones that we trust? They ones we chose to be vulnerable to? I wish I had the perfect answer that would make you jump up and dance, but I hope you heal with your tears as things come to your mind. If you are still the person that has not risen above the attack from the villain in your story, I think it is time you triumph over evil.

What is your role?

The success of every Disney story and Bible story is that the good person always wins. Notice how they never die and take their pain to their graves? Even when they are completely at their weakest, there is a moment that they rise up and overcome the evil that plagued their lives. Your role in your own story is to overcome! You have the exact strength to rise up and overcome the evil that has plagued you for way too long. You have a vital role in your story line that can change all that was meant for evil towards you to good. Here are a few things you should be doing while you seek to overcome:

  1. Learn some lessons- what did the villain’s attack teach you?
  2. Find better ways to deal with pain rather than taking it with you to your grave.
  3. Master your own strengths and weaknesses.
  4. Still be good, even if you have every reason to be evil.
  5. Face your fears!
  6. Work with others- Cinderella had mice friends, Simba had Timon and Pumba and Elsa had Anna. Build a healthy circle of people around you. You can’t do this alone.
  7. Rise up! Nothing happens for people that sit in their misery.
  8. Remind yourself always that you are able to change what was meant for evil into good!
  9. Love always wins!
  10. Give yourself and others grace- that means you have to forgive yourself and the villain if you want to move forward. Very hard to do and it takes time, but it has to be done.

I hope this list helps you being your process to triumph over evil. It is possible because so many times in my own life, I have made the choice to triumph over evil. If you don’t believe me, at least believe the word of God that say;

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

Romans 12 v 21

My last words, Show that villain that their evil will not end your story line. The attack may have been an interruption to the story, but is certainly doesn’t end there. There is more your story has to tell and inspire people to overcome evil for good! It is time for you to take your rightful place! It is time for you to trade thorns for crowns.

Much Love!

Xholiwe

Masks Off: Your honesty with God

Photo by chuttersnap on Unsplash

Hey Crowned Royals! I don’t know about you, but these winter days are what I live for, which also means I should be working out little more because all these holiday treats are not helping this sister out. While winter is not for everyone, I hope you make the most out it this year. On a less wintry note, I wanted as to talk about masks and how masks have kept most of us from being honest with God regarding who we truly are, where we are in life and how we hope God works in our lives.

Here is a disclaimer, this blog is not going to address physical masks that are visible to the human eye, we will talk about the masks that are impossible for human eye to identify, but there a lot of masked people right now. Solely, the purpose of a mask is to hide the true identity of a person. We all know that from the superhero movies we watch right? Marvel fan moment here, how messy would it be if people knew Spider-man’s true identity? I am guessing pretty messy because true identity is not always well received by others. Also, being able to say I am spider-man to everyone down the street without fear of being rejected, made fun of, and ridiculed would be wonderful. I hope you are thinking of your masks right about now because we have all worn some or continue to, at least I know I have. I wore the masks that misidentified me and rid me of who I truly was, where I was at in life and how I hoped things would change. I eventually came to realization that my masks had to come off, because I would still be doing well with keeping the masks on and acting like I had life figured out. So maybe you too have some masks on right now and are acting like you have life figured out, but like always I am here to burst your perfect little bubble. A life lived behind a mask only gives you so much to survive and never enough to thrive in who you truly are. You most certainly are surviving to keep up with the act, and from my experience, it can be exhausting. It can be exhausting to act like you are happy, when you are not. It can exhausting to act like you have money, when you don’t and the list is endless. If you are exhausted with all the acts, it maybe time to take those masks off and come clean with who you are, where you are at in life and where you need God to bring you. How do you do that you ask? Well, you get honest with God first. Are you honest with God?

Our honesty to God is not possible with masks on, if anything, it actually is a barrier. Perfect example is when Adam and Eve realized their were naked and hid in the bushes to cover up their sin towards God. While we are not hiding behind bushes, we surely have had some form of covering to mask some things in our lives. But wasn’t God still merciful and showed Adam and Eve grace? Yes! Despite their mess, he still provided them some form of covering that was not as shameful as hiding behind bushes. Most of us, have not stepped out of the bush or behind that mask because we fear, we are shamed, we are prideful, guilty and the list goes on. It will take complete honesty to come up out of that mask and own up to God. The beautiful thing about taking the mask off and being honest with God is that he gives you grace. I feel like often times we complicate grace and altogether miss it, but I listened to pastor Hart Ramsey this week, and he said something that I thought you can apply to your life. Pastor Hart Ramsey said this, “trying to get God to accept who you pretend to be will not render grace from him, but rather God is trying to get to the real you”. The you that messed up time and time again is the person God would render his grace to, not the person who you have decided to mask up in hopes that God will work some magic. God is not a magician, he is God. We often mistake God for people, and because we have experienced evil from the people we were honest with, we liken God to them. That my friend, is a wrong way to approach God in all honesty. God needs to see that vulnerability that we often hide from people in fear that we will be different. Our openness allows God the permission to work on us, after he renders grace, he works on us. Grace will unmask us and then allow us to know who we really are, where we are in life and where we want God to bring us to. When the masks come off, be prepared to see the good and the bad about you. When in the process of unmasking, don’t be quick to cover up again because all you see about you is bad, but rather let God know about it. He will be glad to work with an honest person that is willing to change and live a mask free life. Here is some scripture that tells you it is okay to unmask yourself;

13 Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.

Hebrews 4 v 13 (NIV)

There is no use hiding from God. He sees you, the real you. You maybe doing well with painting this false picture to your friends and family, but not with God. The scripture says that Nothing! Nothing is hidden in all creation to God. We exposed and naked before him, but unfortunately we also have convinced ourselves that God needs people that are perfect and can only speak in KJV. My bible says that he came for the sinners, not the perfect, he came to render mercy and desired it for sinners (read Matthew 9 v 9-13). The truth is that God is always willing to work with you, but only if you come to him in all honesty.

My last words, Be honest with God. Let him know exactly what is going on and do not leave out anything. You may even have to revisit some past experience to figure out why you wear certain masks, once you discover why, take that to God in all honesty. Have no fear for God has a covering for you, his grace! Allow for the all so powerful, loving, gentle and graceful heavenly father to help you through this process. Masks off! It is time to take our rightful place! it is time to trade thorns for crowns!

Much Love Royal Fam!

Xholiwe

Mocked Crowns: One against all

Image by Alexas_Fotos from Pixabay
Beyond that mockery is a greater purpose that is birthed from our standing one against all
-Xholiwe

Hello Crowned Royals! Here we go again, another week for another trade in. I hope you all are doing well and continue to trade those thorns for crowns! I have so many thoughts regarding what am going to write about this week, so get your reading eyes and open minds ready. This week I think it is fitting to talk about mocked crowns. Xholiwe what do you mean by mocked crowns? Well, I will let the story of mocking of Jesus help us understand the term mocked crowns. So it was at the release of Pontius Pilate Jesus was left into the hands of the Roman soldiers. The Roman soldiers mocked Jesus several ways that included, flogging, laughter, spitting, insults, piercing and as if that was not enough they put a crown of thorns over his head. Oh what such pain to bear, all that for the redemption of a magnitude of people. Jesus from this example was the one against all, but even while he was mocked and crucified to death he still have the victory. While most of us can’t compare our pain to that of Jesus, we surely know what it is like to be mocked physically and spiritually, but there is the good news, we already have the victory! While you stand in the presence of your mockers, be reminded that it too shall not last. So what will we unpack in this blog? We will unpack on how to stay standing even in the presence of your mockers.

Modern day mockery is not as gruesome as the ancient day mockery that involved brutal torture, but it has its effects on people that don’t choose to stand against it. So how does modern mockery attack the one person? The mockers of today don’t have to flog you, insult you, or spit at you, all they need are a couple of hurtful words, lies about you, and old truths that no longer define you to get an unfulfilled satisfaction within them. Unfortunately, so many people fall for this and that is why I think bullying is so predominate in schools, work places and churches, yes, I said it churches have bullies too. Your choice to stand alone against all is what will determine your moving forward. If you are the person falling every time you are mocked then you have some work to do. In the midst of your mockers, it is important to know who you are, just like Jesus knew he was even when they Roman soldiers mocked him. When you know who you are the hurtful words, lies and old truths will not effect you as bad as they would if you didn’t know who you are in the first place. Standing alone is not glamorous as many people expect because it comes with some persecution that is often times unexpected. Can we be honest, not everyone does well under persecution and when the pressure gets too much most will tap out. But why should we not tap out? because beyond that mockery is a greater purpose that is birthed from our standing one against all.

Making the choice to stand one against all can be scary because what we often think is what will people think of me, so then conformity happens. Oprah said it nicely, she said that, “I was once afraid of people saying, “who does she think she is?” Now I have the courage to stand and say, “This is who I am”. Conformity comes from the “what will people think” and victory comes from the “This is who I am”. If Jesus worried what people said towards him and conformed to the mockery of others, we would be telling of another story of our redemption. Jesus knowing who he was brought all of us victory. Knowing who you are is what will bring you victory. I remember being wrapped around the the fear of what will people think of me or say about me and now I acknowledge that limited a lot of the things I actually wanted to do. You may still be that person that is still wrapped around this fear and you are probably looking at how you have limited yourself, but there is a solution! It will take a whole lot of courage stand while everyone else makes mockery of your choice to stand. Let us get this clear, standing is not the weak, it takes a little more strength to stand than it does sitting with the crowd. So what are you currently doing? Are you standing or sitting because it is safe? Please stand up because every season in your life will have some mockers and you will will not sit around mocked and defeated.

Since we still continue to deal with mockers, standing one against all is not a one time thing. We have already established that at every other level or season in your life their will be mockers, so realize that every season will require a little more courage. Courage means you confront the mockers with the confidence of you are. You are a crowned child of God! You are set apart and made for a time such as this! You may not believe me, but there is a word that never lies;

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.

1 Peter 2 v 9 (NIV)

The royal priesthood or in other words “crowned royals” are to be set apart because for most of us, we are aware of how God called us out of the darkness into his marvelous light. So while others will not understand why you are protective over your crowns, they mock you for it, but I commend you to hold on to it! Hold on to the victory of knowing who you are and refusing to be someone else because mockers stand against you. Reminder how I told you modern mockery is not as gruesome as ancient mockery, it actually sounds like people care, so there are a few words that may be spoken to you as you stand against all that you should have solid answers for;

  • You have changed. Answer: Yes, I am supposed to change if I am growing and healing
  • Everyone is doing it. Answer: Doesn’t mean I should be doing it
  • That is how things have always been. Answer: Well, it has to end with me
  • It doesn’t take that much. Answer: It does take that much for me to get to where I want to be
  • You take this God thing too seriously . Answer: Yes, I do because he takes me seriously too
  • You will not make it. Answer: Unless God is not on the throne, but I know he is so I will make it
  • You think you are all that. Answer: I am a pretty big deal to God, so yes!
  • You are too happy. Answer: What else should I be other than happy?

I know there are a whole lot more other statements that mock others, these are just some that I have personally experienced. Some of these questions I answered out of fear, now I know better and so do you! Let’s continue our conversation in the comments, share any mocking statements you have dealt with either in fear of what people would think or from knowing who you are. I would love to see more of us standing one against all the mockers that do not know better. It is time to take our rightful place, it is time to trade thorns for crowns!

Much love,

Xholiwe