Welcome to Normal

I have officially spent more years in bible study than not and can say it has given me confidence in the Word of God and peace. Many of you have smirked at me as I have invited you to join or maybe you came for a while and didn’t see any benefit from it. Knowing who God is in times of trouble gives me immeasurable peace.

During my life, I discovered that making sure nothing was more important than studying God’s word changed how I viewed the world and the people in it. People who know who God is are not always looking for someone to make them feel better about a situation. They know God is going to handle it.

God taught me that the only thing I needed to fear was Him. I keep the vision of Revelation 4 in my head and remind myself one day I will meet Him face to face. Will I know him? Will I be ready? ( I figure when you meet someone who is giant, green, surrounded by thunder and lightning you definitely want to be on their good side. lol)

I have watched people rely on their skill sets and money to see them through. They rely on other people or a set of circumstances. But when you don’t have them what do you rely on? What do you do when those things won’t get you over this hurdle? Many of you won’t sit down, because you want God to deliver you your way. (And once you get to know Him, you wil find He seldom delivers you your way.)

You want to keep your home, your job, your family, your possessions and lose nothing as a result of this. You want the pandemic to be an inconvenience. You don’t want to learn anything from this, you want to be same.

The story of Paul has taught me that when you do stuff your way and then decide to go God’s way, you still have to suffer the consequences of your sin. Paul helped murder Christians before he turned to the Way. God will forgive your sins, but you still suffer the consequences of your actions. When Paul turned to start proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ as Lord, he was beaten, whipped, stoned and imprisoned. The luxurious life he had a Pharisee was gone.

Yet Paul counted pure joy to suffer for the cause of Christ.

God is leading many of you in a certain direction and you are fighting it. You want to maintain your independence and go back to the life we used to know. This is the moment you change directions. He is giving everyone a big long moment.

I laughed with my bible study group last night about this NOT being the end times. The study of Revelation a few years ago pointed out some things that would happen before that occurred. I said this pandemic is just bad, it is not the end. Hear me again. This is just bad. There will be more bad stuff. But there will be more good stuff to come out of it if you are in Christ.

We are not going back to the way it used to be. God showed us when He spread the virus all over the world. There is no place on this planet you can go where there is no virus. And there is no place you can go on this earth where God is not.

China is where we first noticed what this virus and what it could do, and they are still struggling with this virus but because of intense racism from us, the Chinese government has kicked our news media out of the country. We no longer know what our new normal will look like except what their government tells us.

This is our new normal.

The first time the folks in the synagogue picked up stones to kill Paul (and he escaped) he didn’t change his mind and try to go back to his life of comfort. He took the life he faced and walked in it with everything he had. With God we can do the same. It is important that we learn these lessons now because our past will bite us in the behind.

During the 13th Century when European slavers landed on the continent of Africa, I am sure there were some natives who said “Man, we need to work together and get in front of this. We need to stop them from taking our people.” And the response was “But I need to feed my family and take care of the tribe. This is their problem.”

But the Africans greed for gain and complacency would create a system of slavery that would deplete their populations so that they could not fight back and made them susceptible to colonization. If we as a people do not get in front of this virus thing, it is going to destroy a valuable part of our population and we will be susceptible to anything.

God has not given us a spirit of fear. Fear comes from the Devil. God has given is power, love and a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)

If we do not start talking to each other about this virus and how to combat it, then we are going to be wiped out. Many of us have symptoms and are treating them. People are recovering in the hospital. We need to share this.

More importantly, we need to make decisions based on what God is telling us to do. Many of you are behind the eight ball because you don’t even know how to communicate with God. You have had no need to because you thought you could handle it yourselves. You have found independence from Him to be a right. Now an invisible enemy is making you question it.

Today is a good day to start allowing God to lead your life. Pray:

Lord, I am a sinner and I need your help. I can’t do this without you. I am going to stop resisting and listen to you. Speak Lord, your servant is listening.

Find you a really good bible study and start the journey that will fill you with a love that is worth giving up everything.

Water Needed

After the Civil War when African American women began to think more of themselves than slaves, the art of becoming more was much more difficult. Because many of the women were poor and didn’t have ready access to water, they had a struggles when it came to regular hygiene.

Water was something individuals had to carry from a creek or well, which meant bathing and hair washing was relegated to many once a week. This resulted in hair diseases and loss of hair.

Madam CJ Walker , who was born shortly after slavery ended, had problems with her hair. She suffered from scalp diseases that made her hair fall out. This problem set her on the path to change the lives of African American women and how they saw themselves. She wanted them to feel beautiful, have self respect and uplift the race.

In the month of April we will examine African American beauty.

Women’s History

Last day. Normally a time to look back over our history and reflect on how far we have come. Today I want to look at some living sheros doing things that show that women don’t retire or sit around waiting patiently for things to happen.

This week House Speaker Nancy Pelosi celebrated her 80th birthday. I am pretty sure she did not think she would spend the 80th year of her life battling a lunatic who had been elected president. She has represented the 12th District in California, San Francisco area for 30 years. She is in her third term as Speaker of the House.

Many of us can testify to grandmothers or aunts who reach this age and continue to work diligently for the family. She is living something many of us believe, which is that the work never ends, only we do.

In the midst of this pandemic another woman who stands out to me is Yamiche Alcindor, a White House correspondent for PBS Newshour, has been covering the President during the crisis. Also a contributor to NBC and MSNBC, she has found herself at the end of the president’s wrath because of her because she asked the tough questions. Alcindor didn’t show a tiredness of his berating her, but continues to do her job.

An experienced reporter, she has also worked for the New York Times and USA Today. Alcindor has this amazing stamina to keep on fighting the good fight. It is easy to cheer for someone doing good work.

Speaking of good work, there is a woman that blew my mind. During a time of crisis in our nation she reached out to people and helped them where they hurt. Their pocketbooks. On social media Roxane Gay has repeatedly given cash donations to people who are affected by the pandemic.

She would start a tweet with leave your venmo here is you could $100 for whatever. You didn’t have to say why. Gay is a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times, author of several books and university professor. Yt as you can see one thing does not describe her or any other these women.

I can say these women have done things I have not see men in their positions do. I am encouraged by their stamina. I am inspired by their strength and depth. I am proud to belong to their gender.