Daily Devotional – 10/16/18 “Who are you?”

I watched the movie “Nappily Ever After,” on Netflix last night. Good movie. I absolutely loved the fact, the ending (without giving the movie away) wasn’t like all movies that ends unrealistically. I say this because not every reality ends happily ever after. For those of you who have never heard of this movie, it’s about Violet who has been raised to believe she needs to always be perfect, especially when it comes to her hair. She’s get up extra early to make sure her boyfriend woke up to her being “perfect.” She thought she was giving him what he wanted until he told her, being with her felt like they’d been on their first date for two years. The movie showed how men would stop and look at her when she was perfect but didn’t even bat an eye when she was going through an identity crisis. Reality hit her in the face and it made her take a step back. Won’t life do you like this? But here is what I got from the movie. It wasn’t that men were looking at when she was “perfect” and ignoring her when she wasn’t. They were looking because when she was “perfect” she was bold yet imperfect, she walked as if life was dragging her. In her pursuit for perfection, she was unapologetic and she walked with her head held high but at the first sign of crisis, she folded.

You want to know why? Because she didn’t know the person behind the hair and makeup and when she removed those things, she was forced to come face to face with who she really was. And because she didn’t know her, she didn’t know how to love and embrace her. And for some of us, we are in the same shoes. You’ve had the façade up for so long, pretending to be strong but if the right gust of wind come, it will knock you clean over. You jump from relationship to relationship because you don’t know your identity of singleness to even cuddle it. You walk around smiling, inwardly broken. Helpful to everybody else because you’re afraid of admitting you need help too. You accept every invitation, go to every party, dressing up and playing the part because truth is, you’re afraid of the voices when you’re by yourself and it’s quiet. You don’t know you and that’s dangerous. You don’t know you and that’s detrimental to who you can become. Who are you? No, I mean for real, who are you? When the wig and makeup is off, who are you? When the suit is thrown across the bed, who are you? When the lights are off, who are you? When the church doors are closed, who are you? Without social media, who are you? Without your title, awards and accolades who are you? Do you even know? Bible shares in Ephesians 2:10, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”

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Daily Devotional – 12/13/16 “Character reference!”

In Luke 10, Jesus gives a parable of a ‘good’ Samaritan who stopped to help a man in need. A man who had been robbed of all he had and then beaten. A man who laid helpless on the road yet no one offered to help. A man who others had passed by because they “didn’t want to get involved.” You know how we do. We don’t want to get into people’s business so we allow them to lay in their mess. We don’t want to get involved so we walk pass people who are dying in front of us. We don’t want to get tangled into their lives so we turn our heads when we see their need. I’m not going to go deep into this particular scripture, now, but if you read the passage you’ll notice that it didn’t give the identity of the man just that he was going from Jerusalem to Jericho, which leads me to believe He is a Jew. This is important. The bible goes on to identify that a priest and a Levite man both passed by this distressed man without lifting a hand in need.

Yet, here comes this Samaritan who takes pity on the man. A Samaritan who didn’t fool with the Jews because the Jews didn’t mess with them. However, he goes out of his way to bandage this man’s wounds, puts him on a donkey, takes him to a nearby inn and then pays for him to stay there until he gets well. A Samaritan who by culture wasn’t fitting to even eat with. Oh but I’ve come to understand this … Helping someone isn’t about the condition or circumstance of the person in need but it’s really about the character of you whose doing the helping. This is why God will allow things to fall in front of you. God needs to test your character to see if you’re really about this life! God needs to know if you’ll really help, like you claim. God needs to see if you’ll go like you say you will. Beloved, God is simply checking to see if there’s a fire, within you, or if it’s all smoke. This is why, when it comes to helping, it is about you! God can heal, deliver, provide and set free without you but He’ll use you to manifest things simply to see if your character is worthy.