Like many people in this world, I can be a little too hard on myself. How hard I am on my children to get stuff done and do things right, I am just as hard on myself if I don’t fully accomplish something or make mistakes. I know we’re all human and the way life is set up, it’s not always going to go right, but that doesn’t stop me from pushing myself to do my absolute best in everything I set my hands to do. With that being said, in a previous post, I talked about three things I set out to do this year. Vision Tees and Things was launched, the Vision Connection Party was canceled due to COVID, which was way out of my control, and writing consistently in my blog became almost impossible, so I thought. I started to beat myself up a little when I realized I pressed only one out of three of my goals, but then, I was reminded, the year is not over yet. I still have time to do what I set out to do. All I needed to do was focus and put my time management skills I learned to good use. I have still had orders coming in to be filled, I’ve been looking at ways to have a Virtual Vision Connection Party, and I have been brainstorming ideas for posts for the rest of this year and even next year. I’m on the move!
My encouragement to you today is, with a little less than two months left in this year, just do it. Why wait until January 1st to make a resolution? Most of the time, we make these resolutions, have great momentum month one and head back to our old habits by month two. Some of us don’t even make it week one. Why not start again now? Why not go back to the goal from the beginning of this year? Whether it’s writing the book, launching the business, learning something new, starting the process to buy a house, just start. This time start with intentions to finish strong. Start with intentions to stay focused and keep your momentum. COVID may have stopped the world from moving a little, but we can’t let it take our dreams and goals. I will not be one to allow my goals and dreams to be placed on the backburner again. It’s never too late to begin. Just do it! You got this!
Last week, I decided to write out some personal, business, and home goals for my children and myself. I asked my youngest to bring the sheets of paper I wrote them down on to the car one morning. He dropped the home goals in the hallway. The next night, while the kids were getting ready for bed, my daughter comes in my room with tears in her eyes. The conversation goes as follows:
Mya: Mama, I read your goals. I’m so happy and sad.
Me: Why are you sad?
Mya: I don’t know. It’s just..Mama you believe in this for us?
Me: Yes I do.
Mya: I believe too Mama and I don’t care what anybody else thinks. It’s about what you and we believe.
I have heard many teachings about Vision in my lifetime, but never fully understood it until I had to have vision for my own household. When I was in a committed relationship, my mindset was the man has the vision for the house. Once the man who I sought after for vision from was no longer around, I had to learn how to seek vision, goals, and dreams, not only for myself, but for my children as well. Through the conversation with my daughter, I was reminded of the part of the scripture that says, “Make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it”. Why did I never think about my children being the ones to read it and run? Then, I rebuked myself. Ebony, you never let them read it. You never told them what God said. You never told them what your plans were for this house. You just expected them to believe in something they had never read or even heard about. I expected them to believe in me just because I was their mother and head of the household. Then, I had to think about it. If I had a husband, would I just believe in him for those same reasons without knowing where we’re going? I believe knowing this shows me what my assignment is in the plan; I’ll know what to pray for, what to seek God for in regards to our household, where to provide strength. This goes the same in your church. I love how my Pastor is very open with us as a congregation about where God wants to take us as a body of believers. He works diligently and seeks from God Himself on making specific moves for the church. He, also, gets direction from God on specific assignments as well. The leadership team has those assignments. Those specific leaders have a team who not only believe in the vision of the set ministry, but the church as a whole. We are all runners. We all have an assignment in different aspects of our lives. It’s on us to hear and read the vision set and get on our jobs to do what’s necessary for it to come to pass. Individually, we have vision. My Pastor says all the time, “We are not supposed to write it, read it, and run.” You’ll risk getting burned out on what your assignment is. It’s on us to write it out and make it plain. Then, God shows who is supposed to read it and run with what He said. Don’t be shocked by who He sends because God can use ANYBODY, even children. So, just write it out. The believers in it will come. Be Blessed.
At the beginning of this year, I had my mind set on pushing my blog, having the Vision Connection Party, and starting my business. One out of three is good! Before the surge with COVID-19, I invested in myself by purchasing two of the items needed to start my business, Vision Tees and Things. I learned so much through YouTube, craft groups on social media, and craft friends, it became hard to focus on one specific thing in regards to everything I wanted to accomplish through my business. I was having my syndrome again. My initial goal was to cut out the middleman and produce my own designs and logos on different products geared towards my blog, but as I started to learn more and do more, my business took a turn for the better. I started to do more than just printing t-shirts. I started to print on mugs, make keychains, customize wine glasses, and so much more. I can honestly say I probably would not have been able to accomplish and master all of these things if I was not forced to stay home with my children when the schools closed back in March. I used our downtime to create, fill orders, learn, and grow.
So, here are a few things I have learned in year 2020:
Don’t Forget Your Ultimate Goal: Your Reason Why
Recently, I sat down and wrote out personal, home, and business goals for my children and myself. In addition to these goals, I wrote how they will be accomplished. Doing this helped me to understand what my ultimate goal was for absolutely everything concerning my life. What am I working towards? What am I looking to accomplish by doing this? What do I want to see come out of this? I believe, wholeheartedly, knowing this will keep me consistent and focused. I wrote out these goals so I can see daily what I am working towards. Whenever I need a little motivation, I can revert to what I wrote. It’s just like a vision board without the pictures. I remember when I first started blogging. It was ultimately to give people a glimpse of my life through my testimony while motivating through vision. Motivating through vision is my ultimate goal. It wasn’t going to only follow through with the blog or speaking engagements. Now I’ve created a platform where tangible items can be created to showcase that same vision whether it’s through wearing your brand on your chest, drinking out of a mug with your logo plastered all over it, or carrying a bag with a motivational message to keep you moving forward. Knowing and understanding this ultimate goal, for me, keeps me diligent and pushes me to stay the course no matter what.
Lord have Mercy! I believe this one was the hardest lesson for me to learn, especially after I went back to work. It’s safe to say I am still a work in progress on this one. Now, if you know me personally, you would agree I can sometimes be a little bit of a procrastinator. Sometimes I can feel I have all the time in the world and wait until the very last minute to get something done. Being a business owner, working a full-time job, maintaining a household with children, all while attempting to have a social life Post-COVID, I was forced to manage my time. I write out a weekly schedule, plan my daily duties, make a to-do list and prioritize by level of importance. Doing this can help me physically see what needs to be done and what needs to be moved around. Through time management, I learned it’s okay to take a break. It is needed. At times, it can become overwhelming having so many responsibilities so it’s quite all right to take a step back and breathe. You never want to get to a place where you are forced to sit down and do absolutely nothing. So, manage the time you have, take care of what’s needed in that moment, and take a pause if you need to, but don’t ever stop going.
Trust God with EVERYTHING
Have you ever gotten to a point in life where your only option is to trust HIM? I have; more times than I could ever imagine. Trusting God goes so much more beyond words though. You can say with your mouth, “I trust Him”, but if you don’t believe God can do whatever you’re asking Him to do for you specifically, it means nothing. There were many times I looked at a situation I was going through and felt I sometimes deserved to stay stuck in what I was in, but I messed around and started believing what I had seen God do for others, He can do for me too and what He has done in my life before, He can do it again and again and again. When I started to live knowing that God can do the unimaginable, the possibilities became endless. I made up in my mind, with everything in me; I would never walk around this earth feeling defeated because I have God. I will trust Him when things are looking good and, most definitely, when life appears bad. One of my favorite sayings is, “Things could always be worse.” Many times, we look at our situation that looks unfixable or unchangeable and forget what we’ve seen before, what we’ve come out of previously. I don’t believe God just takes us through for fun. Everything serves a purpose. So since He’s all-knowing, why not trust Him? What do you have to lose?
Now, we all know this year has been CRAZY and I’ve heard a lot of people say, “I’m ready for this year to be over.” “This year sucks.” I’m not going to lie, I found myself agreeing with them for a moment until I started to look at EVERYTHING I gained and lost. To tell you the truth, this year has been life changing. I don’t regret one thing I’ve done nor do I wish anything would’ve happened differently. I believe everything that has happened was designed to happen to me and for me. I titled this post “The Vision Blogger is Still Alive” because somewhere along this journey of 2020 I neglected my reason why. Writing out my goals the other day awakened something in me I thought I lost and one thing is for sure, I don’t ever want to feel like I lost my passion, my zeal, or my tenacity to walk in my purpose and do what I was created to do. Ever. So, my reason why is springing forth. My Vision is still alive.
Hello Family! I have not written a post in a little while, but I can definitely tell you I have been working on soooooo many things involving my VISION for “The Vision Blogger” Companies so be on the lookout. BIG THINGS ARE HAPPENING!!! (My team tells me I need to focus on one thing, but I can’t. LOL.)
At the end of August, my daughter, Mya, and I went to support one of my church sisters, Rhoshonda Adkison’s, event “Breakfast with Daddy’s Girl”. The event was located at Hanz’s Diner in North Houston where in the provided area, the women and young girls sat on the outside of the tables, while men sat in the middle. Each man represented that day was the “Dad” for about three or four ladies or young girls and became responsible for them for the time given. After our informal meet and greet, we all wrote out the letters to spell father on the sheet of paper given and were asked to describe what a father is using each letter. As we formulated our list, Mya started to remember her dad and came up with words with that glee and smile in her eyes I hadn’t seen in a long while. Most of the words did not start with the letters provided, but it was amazing to hear her just describe him. That moment caused me to step back and truly think about my father and how our relationship and his passing affected me.
Mya was SPOILED with a capital “S”. Now the word “spoiled” is often used as a derogatory term, but in my eyes, if a child or teenager was spoiled, they often got mostly everything they wanted and were not punished for things you might have received a punishment for. As a child, growing up, I confused being spoiled with being more loved. One day, I actually told my dad I felt he loved my sisters more than me because they were always getting what they wanted from him. His words to me were, “You have the same opportunities to get what you want and need from me, but you don’t ask.” He was right. In my mind, at the time I felt like it was wrong of me to always go and ask my dad for anything when my little sister was always going to him already for everything. I also felt like I didn’t call him enough or spent enough time with him to ask him for things I wanted or needed. I just never wanted my dad to feel like I only called him for those reasons. Looking back on this now, I am the same way with God. I know He is absolutely everything and He can do what I can’t, but I never want it to seem like I only talk to Him when I need Him. After the conversation with my dad, I realized it was my fault I felt the way I did. Point blank, I never in no shape, form, or fashion, felt unloved by my father, but as a young girl, I never knew how and what it meant for a father to show real love without having gifts and things I desired. As a teenager, as I grasped the concept of what a father’s love should consist of, I realized I looked forward to meals with my dad, going to church with him, and laughing with him until my stomach hurt more than having the materialistic things. Thankfully, I learned this early on where that perception of love would not boil over into my relationships as an adult. I was proud to say that my daughter experienced love from her father different than how I felt as a young girl. Her father wasn’t fully in a position to give her everything she wanted. Honestly at three years old, she really didn’t ask for much of anything. She knew her father loved her by the time spent with her, the hugs and kisses he gave, and the compliments of how beautiful she is. That’s the love she experienced in only three years that she still thinks about almost five years later.
Losing my father at 22 was TOUGH for two reasons. One, I had just left my home church a year before and he had become my pastor and baptized me. As my pastor, our relationship grew stronger than I could’ve ever imagined. I saw my father in a different light and didn’t want that light to dim from my life. The second reason was, two months to the day of his passing, I had just given birth to my first child, Elijah. I remember the day I had him. The look in his eyes was unexplainable. He kept coming in the recovery room with me and going right back out to check on my son. The next day, he came back to the hospital and just held him for hours. My sister told me he preached about Elijah from the Bible for three weeks straight. When we came back to church, after service was over, he prayed and said, “Bring me my grandson.” You could see the joy in his eyes and hear it in his smile when he called. It pained me to come to grips with him not being able to see him and the other grandchildren grow up. Even now, it hurts sometimes to think about how he never got a chance to meet all the other grandkids who have been born since his passing.
The final activity of the event was writing a letter to our fathers. I truly thought the activity was going to be an emotional one for myself and Mya but it was actually relieving. In Mya’s letter, she wrote about everything she missed about him being here on earth with her. As we finished, I started to ask myself, “What do you want to say that you never got a chance to say?” One thing was how much I loved and appreciated him as my father and at that time, as my Pastor. My father would move the moon and stars for his wife, his girls, his family, his friends and God’s people. He was a true servant. It was a blessing to see him sick, well, happy, or sad serve. That’s why when I saw the flyer where my father’s church, True Praise Missionary Baptist Church, under Pastor Earnest Helaire, Jr., was having their opening service for the new building, I couldn’t and wouldn’t have missed it. My father’s VISION had come to pass. I didn’t know everything True Praise had to go through to get the building but I knew there were obstacles. Before and even during the opening service, they continued to face opposition when the air conditioner went out. That didn’t stop them from giving God praise and honor for what He had done for them as a church. First Lady Sha Helaire and other members served the members and guests ice water because of the heat. I just believed just as she served in that moment, it was a direct representation of True Praise and what they had to endure as they waited for the vision to come to pass. They continued to serve. They didn’t quit. They didn’t allow road blocks to hinder the process of moving forward.Passing by my grandparents’ house, I had seen the pieces for the building many times, but to see all the pieces together to create the beautiful edifice was encouraging. My vision is written ALL OVER on many sheets of paper in my journal, sticky notes on my desk, and even notes in my phone, in pieces. My pieces can and will come to pass just like my father’s vision did. “And the Lord answered me, and said, write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.” My father wrote the vision and made it plain. His church, now under the leadership of Pastor Helaire, continued on even in the midst of the heartbreak of losing their child, brother, friend, and pastor. They are running with what was written.
Every single person in this world has had their own experience with love from their birth fathers whether it was existent or non-existent. Some people don’t or didn’t have the luxury of even having their father in their lives at all or only in bits and pieces of it. What I have always found throughout my life and even through others’ testimonies, whatever you may have felt about your father, whether he was there or not, God is the only one who can fill any void you may have from not having your father around or not receiving what you needed from him. I love the idea of the “Daddy’s Girls” Ministry because Rhoshonda brings teenage girls together, which I believe the teen years are a pivotal stage in life, to minister to them about the love of Christ and building an unimaginable bond with Him. As great as my biological father was to me and as much love I am surrounded by from my family and friends, I could never live without the love of God and wouldn’t be able to understand life at times without having that relationship with Him.
With this post, I honor my father, Pastor Jim Miles, Jr. and True Praise Missionary Baptist Church. I love you guys tremendously. Keep up the good work. Be Blessed.
Hello ALL!!! First off, let me thank you for even taking the time to grace my page with your presence. Thank You. Thank You. Thank You. It’s means a lot. Second, I have always wanted to start a blog, but I just never knew how. So, please forgive me if I don’t know exactly what I am doing right off the back. My life changed drastically after the loss of the father of my three children. I bought a diary (actually two of them) to try and get some of my feelings out on the table. I have only wrote in it one time. I carry it around with me in my HUMONGOUS purse like I am going to get some kind of INSPIRATION to write in it. I follow a blog on my Facebook page from someone that I have known since I was a little girl. Her name is Janae Strickland. Her blog is called “Confessions From a Red Couch.” Reading her post from the other night inspired me to share my story, and my many more stories to come, on my journey called LIFE. I have a story to tell and I have a feeling that my story will help someone else, who may not be dealing with the same things that I deal with on a day-to-day basis, but maybe similar to it. I won’t flood this page daily and may not even be weekly, but at least bi-weekly or even monthly.
So, many would probably ask me, “Why are you a WOMAN on PURPOSE” or “How are you PREGNANT with DESTINY”. I’ll explain. Growing up, I would hear grown-ups say all the time they should have been dead a LONG time ago. I never understood that statement until I became a grown-up myself. I am no where near a perfect person, but I am striving to be all that GOD has called me to be. I have done some CRAZY things in my many years of life. Things have happen to me where I felt I was either going to lose my mind or even my life. So, I am here on PURPOSE. There is a reason why I am living, breathing, and raising three children. There is a reason. So, how can I be pregnant with DESTINY? Many people go through a full lifetime without knowing what they are actually supposed to do on this earth. Some may not believe, but everyone is born to do something. After the loss of my children’s father, I felt lost…..AT FIRST. Then God helped me to realize that everything happens for a reason and everything that HE does is for my GOOD. I am growing more and more each day as I am becoming more and more aware of where I am going. I don’t have the full purpose, YET, but I know that I have something on the inside of me that is being formed until it is ready to come out. This is DESTINY.
I ask that you join me on this ride. There will be some highs and some lows, but WE ALL ARE GOING TO GET THROUGH THIS. I, also, will never turn down constructive criticism. I am here to help, when I can, and have an open floor.
Thank you for your time. I hope to see you again. BE BLESSED…..