Monday, December 19, 2011

Whoa! This Is Not What I Asked For

My step-daughter’s son stated he wanted an XBOX 360 for Christmas, and his mom decided to get him the XBOX 360 Kinect.  For those of you who don’t know, the only difference is, the “Kinect” is an attachable motion sensor that allows you to operate games without using an actual controller.  They are actually both the same exact thing because, if you want to, you can actually detach the Kinect, and hence have the original XBOX 360, however, as a small child, he could not grasp that he was actually getting more.  He told his mommy, “I don’t want the Kinect, I want the 360!”  He couldn’t grasp that his mother wanted to bless him with more than what he asked for.  He couldn’t grasp that he was indeed getting what he asked for, but so much more to the 10th power.
The scripture that comes to mind is, Ephesians 3:20 (The Message) God can do anything, you know—far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not by pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us. 
Brace yourself, beloved.  God is ready to blow your mind!  He dreams bigger than we do!  So while you’re asking for a house, he wants to bless you with a mansion.  You’re asking for a job, and he wants to give you a career.  Honey, whatever you are asking for, believing for, or even thinking about; He wants to give it to you a 100 times over.   Don't let your small thinking limit what God can do! 
Spiritual Disclaimer:  Sometimes the things we ask for comes with a price, and a great responsibility—so be careful when you start asking, dreaming, and thinking.  God is ready to do the unimaginable for you and through you! 
Stay Hopeful,

Friday, December 16, 2011

Making A Bad Situation Worse

My baby girl, age 11, experienced her first pimple bump, positioned perfectly, on the right side of her face, about an inch underneath the eye. Using motherly wisdom, I warned her not to pick at it because, it was too soon, and it could make it worse. When she came home from school the next day, there was a noticeable change in the blemish. What started out as a small, red bump, had now turned into a sore. She was devastated. Without caring how hideous she looked, she was putting band-aids on it, and applying globs of cocoa butter on it. Sounds familiar?

Have you ever had a small problem/situation that you were faced with—carelessly, you approached it the wrong way, and made it worse? Then, found yourself trying to bandage it up, and apply soothing creams on it, to make it feel better, or to reverse the bigger mess you’ve created. This could be as simple as a small bump, but for most of us, it’s life—our finances, marriages, friendships, raising our kids, our bodies, our health, ministries, goals, etc. And for those of us that understand the power of words, we don’t even have to put our hands on a situation to make it worse, we can just speak the wrong things regarding it, our lives, and things/people attached to us.

Sarah is a prime example of meddling—trying to fix a problem in her own way, and making a bad situation worse. I’m sure she thought to herself a million times, “What on earth have I done?” Every time she turned around, there it was; a reminder of what she had done. But in the end, God fixed it.

We can’t change what has already been done, but I’m confident, that there is absolutely nothing too hard for God, and he can definitely clean up, heal, and undo, some of the things we’ve done. However, from this point forward, we have to learn to be careful in how we approach a situation. Be careful what we do, and most importantly, watch the words that we speak, regarding our situations, and our lives.

Some things are just not for us to mess with, but in the result that we do, it’s not the end of the world. Although we can’t fix it, God can. Is there anything too hard for God—even the messes that we make for ourselves? Absolutely not!

I’m a true believer that this is what God meant by: And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. (Romans 8:28 NLT) Yes, even what we consider bad, and mess-ups, God can use for a bigger and better purpose, and for His Glory! “I can see Him saying, she messed up, but I can use that later. Uh-oh, she messed up again, I can use that too!” Only God can make a mess, a message, and bless someone by it.

Disclaimer: Sometimes the consequences of our actions, leaves an everlasting blemish. These lessons should be used as testimonies for others. Don’t you remember someone older telling you that they are telling you this, to keep you from making the same mistakes as they did? Right; it’s a learning experience. So, don’t be sad about it, use it to help someone else.

Stay Hopeful,


Thursday, December 1, 2011


The number on the phone is not a familiar one, but I decided to answer it anyway. The voice from the other end says, “Ms. Johnson?”
“Yes it is.”
“Hi, my name is Karen with ABC bank (name left out for privacy purposes), and I work in the Debit Card Dept. My job is to monitor the usage and transaction made via debit card purchases. My purpose of calling you today is to ask if you had just tried to make a purchase at Gamestop for $377?
Shocked, I answered, “No, I didn't!”
She continued, “Ok, well the transaction was rejected, and no monies were deducted from your account, but we have cancelled your card, and you will need to call customer service and order a new card.”

I ran to my room while the rep was speaking, and searched through my wallet for my card, and there it was, in it's normal place. Many questions ran through my mind, such as....
  1. How did they get my card number?
  2. I wonder what site did they pull it from?
  3. What would have happened if they didn't catch the transaction in time?
“WOW! Thank you so much for catching that! May I ask you, how did you know to reject this transaction, unlike all the other ones that I do use my card for?”
“Well this transaction was done in California, and you live in Georgia for one.”
"WOW!" was all I could offer as a response. 
For once in a long time, I was proud to be a customer of ABC Bank, especially now, knowing that they were watching out on my behalf.  The enemy's plan didn't work this time!  I was protected from predators, hackers, and thieves taking what belonged to me.  Yes, my father is rich and owns the cattle on a thousand hills, but I need all my money! Bills got to be paid, groceries have to be bought, and Christmas is right around the corner.

Isn't it great to know that even when you don't think it, someone is watching out for you?   The Bible says that our Father in heaven, never sleeps nor slumber.  It is definitely a great relief to know that He sees what we can't, and even while we are asleep, He's always watching, waiting to protect us from dangers seen and unseen.

I thought about the many times He's directed me to go a different direction, just to find out later that He prevented me from a horrible accident. I thought about all the boys that broke my heart and left me, just to later find out that He prevented me from some major heartaches. I thought about the doors He closed, the times He said No, when I wanted so eagerly for Him to say Yes! I owe Him many THANKS for watching and protecting me, even when I didn't know that He was.  (Take a moment and think about it--I'm sure He's protected you from something)....Makes you proud to serve a God like that, don't it?

Just as Karen watches over my finances, God watches over us completely!  Being a visual person, I can literally see Him (GOD), with a shield and sword, blocking and protecting anyone, or anything from getting in the way of our future, and purposes.  Sure things have happened; bad things have happened, but I now know that- Nothing happens unless He allows it to; and even then- He knows all, and He sees all, and I am confident that it will all work out for my good.

Psalm 121:1-8--1 I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help. 2 My help cometh from the LORD, which made heaven and earth. 3 He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber . 4 Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep . 5 The LORD is thy keeper : the LORD is thy shade upon thy right hand. 6 The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. 7 The LORD shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. 8 The LORD shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.

Stay Hopeful,


Wednesday, November 9, 2011


Almost a year ago, January to be a little more specific, my ministry class were asked to make a prayer list.  Each one of us were instructed to write down something important that we wanted God to do for us, and once finished, they were placed in an envelope.  Our administrator advised she would return them to us in six months; at that time, we would look at them to see what God had done for us. 

The purpose of this assignment was for us to see how much God loved and cared about us, and the things that concerns us.  With my pen in hand, I began writing my list:

1.  I want God to open doors for me to be in full time ministry and to work on my motivational speaking for youth development. (which I know is my purpose).
2.  I want to have my book published or in the process.
3.  I want my husband to experience God and get a closer relationship with Him.

Upon the return of my list, I could see that God was working on my prayers.  This morning, I wanted to testify of the goodness, and faithfulness of Jesus in regards to my prayers.

Prayer 1:  Back in July, I lost my job.  For the first couple of  months, I was feeling some type of way, and was kind of stagnant.  I finally realized that God did this just for me.  He has given me the time to do what I desire to do.   All I have to do is walk in it.  I can check this one off the list.

Prayer 2:  During this time off from work, I have been working tirelessly on my book, and have a goal  to have it finished by the end of the year.   Check out the book cover!  I can check this one off the list.

Sleeping With The Enemy

Prayer 3:  There was a test that came our way.  This test allowed my husband to experience God in a different way.  He is now paying tithes, and I have heard him tell God, "Thank You" on several occasions.   I see change in him daily.  God is doing it!  I can check this one off the list.  Uh oh, I think it's time to create a new one! 

So you see, God does answer prayers.  Just as He answered mine, He wants to answer yours!  That's what He does.  He's a prayer answering God!  Don't believe me; try it for yourself.  Make your own list, but be sure to not ask for things amiss (the wrong kind of things).  Put it up in a safe place.  Pray over it daily, and watch God work!  You'll be checking things off in no time! 

A prayer list does not ensure your prayers being answered, your faith does! 
14 And we are confident that he hears us whenever we ask for anything that pleases him. 15 And since we know he hears us when we make our requests, we also know that he will give us what we ask for. 1 John 5:14-15 (NLT)
The list just allows you to have a visual, something to look back on and see how faithful God really is. 

Stay Hopeful,


Monday, October 31, 2011


This past weekend, my family and I went out of town.  Whenever we go out of town, my husband and I normally share the task of drving.  If he drives to our destination, I will normally drive back home.  You should know that I don't like driving when my husband is in the car for two reasons.  One, I don't like heavy traffic and with him telling me to speed up, slow down, go over, etc., it makes me more nervous than I already am, and frustrated.  Secondly, I just have this thing that if he's in the car, as a man, he should drive his lady around.  Kind of old fashion, huh? 

Anyhoo, we really had a GREAT time, and we were exhausted by the time the trip came to a close.  We left later than what we had intended, and with a drive of a little over four hours, neither one of us was up for the drive.  Since he drove first, it was my time to take the wheel, and my husband was rubbing it in.  When it was time to go, he got in the driver seat and we rode out. 

After about half way, I asked him was he tired and did he want me to drive.  He said, he was okay, but I could tell he was tired, and I knew he needed to rest for work the next day.  Nevertheless, he drove all the way home.  "Oh wow!  He really loves me!",  is all I could think.  I didn't have to wonder if he did, or even pull daisies while quoting, "he loves me, he loves me not", because at that moment, I knew it.  It was not what he said, but it was what he did that told me so!

Every person, regardless how tough they may appear to be, loves to be told they are loved!  It really sounds good to the ears, and it makes the heart smile, however, the words are not as powerful than the deed.  Love is action and it's not about what one says, it's more about what they do.  I've known people and even experienced being told "I love you" and that same person who spoke those words, abused me.  The action spoke louder than the words! 

When I think about Jesus, He has never spoke audibly to me the words, "Clarissa, I love you!", but He shows me daily!  Every morning when I rise, He shows me!  When He blesses me beyond what I deserve, He shows me! When He provides for my family, He shows me!  Just last week, when my husband was laid off from work, but somebody spoke on his behalf, and although others have been laid off, they called him back to work, He showed me!  I don't have to wonder if He does, I know He loves me!  For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal. - John 3:16.  It's not about what He said, it's about what He did!   He loved me so much, that He died on the cross on my behalf, that I might not die, but live; that I would not be lost, but saved! 

Let us also, follow His example; don't just tell a person you love them, show them.  Don't let your actions make what you say be a lie.  Your actions do speak louder than your words!  

So, what do you know?  Does He love you, or does He love you not?

Stay Hopeful,


Monday, September 26, 2011


Within the last week, there have been many posts and talks about Facebook beginning to charge for users to use their site.  It's amazing to me, how many people will believe something and spread the news without even investigating it.  If you go to the Facebook sign in page, it says clearly, FREE AND ALWAYS WILL BE! 

I have over 800 friends, and I've seen the rumors run rampantly across my page (it makes me wonder do any of my friends read, especially being that this disclaimer is on everybody's login page- LOL).  It's a shame we don't spread the good news like this.  The good news about salvation.  Many people feel that they have to give up so much and that it costs so much, but the truth is, IT'S FREE AND ALWAYS WILL BE!  JESUS paid the price! 

Many issues and problems has risen due to Facebook, but the creator didn't design it to create such chaos. The users are the ones who uses it for more than what it was orignially created for.  I'm sure the owner did not seek out to destroy the marriages that has been destroyed, nor the sex maniacs that preys on our kids, etc.  Facebook in itself has allowed many people to be connected to old friends and family memebers.  It's great for networking and meeting new people. 

It's the same thing with salvation, it's GREAT!  There's deliverace in salvation.  There's healing in salvation; and there's FREEDOM in salvation! God created all things, and EVERYTHING He created was good, but again, the users/people perverted some things and have just made a mess out of it.  People think they have to give up their whole life and they can't do anything fun based on the rumors they've heard.  BUT don't believe everything you hear.  People will lead you wrong sometimes.

So today, let me say this on behalf of Facebook and Salvation, IT'S FREE AND ALWAYS WILL BE! 

Disclaimer:  I don't know what FB will do in the future, but I can pretty much guarantee you that the price for Salvation will never change! 

Stay Hopeful,


Thursday, September 22, 2011


Destiny appoints one, but affects many.- Beth Moore from the Esther series.  I read this statement while in bible study class last night.  Immediately I grasped what she was saying.  So many times we go through things and while we are going through it, it doesn't feel good at all.  But the truth is, it really wasn't about you.  Yes, you are the one that went through it.  You are the one who felt the pain from it.  You are the one that lost things out of it, and so on, but even out of your pain, people can and will be blessed, as long as we do what God has appointed us to do. Our ministries and testimonies are not for us, they are for others! 

I'm reminded of the story of Joseph.  He was betrayed, sold into slavery, accused of wrong doing and everything, but in the end, those steps were neccessary in order for him to fulfill what he was designed or destined to do.  Those ordered steps were neccessary in order for him to be a savior for the people during the famine. 
The bible says that our steps are ordered by the Lord.  Psalm 37:23  I believe that everything we go through, even things we can look back on and know without a shatter of doubt that we caused or that it was our own doing, God can use that for his Glory.  All things (EVEN THE BAD), YES!  All things and everything work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. Romans 8:28.  

Be encouraged that you have purpose.  Know that people can be blessed through your trials.  Although you are the one that has been appointed for such a task; many will affected and benefit from it.  Just think about it- Destiny apponts one, but affects many. 

Stay Hopeful,


Tuesday, September 13, 2011


During the holiday weekend,  went to spend some time with some friends.  While riding down the highway, we decided to listen to the radio, and the station was playing some real nice songs.  Well, Boyz To Men's, Please Don't Go came on and I was telling my husband how their CD was one of my favorites.  I told him how I use to play it every morning while getting ready for school.  Yes, I remember the Motown-Philly with an east coast swing jam. 

Anyhoo, the next song that came on was Shirley Murdock's, As We Lay.  My husband asked, "Were you in school when that song came out?"  I replied, "yes" and continued to tell him that I remember being a young girl when this song came out.  Certain songs have a way of taking you back to a specific time in life and I can remember being real young, but somehow I was always "older" than other girls.  A young girl with an older or grown person's mentality and even at 12 years old, my mature level was way above the average 12 year old.

I wasn't prepared for the conversation to take this turn but my husband responded with, "it shows."  What does he mean by, it shows! I wanted to know, so I asked, "what does that suppose to mean?"  He said, as if he was clarifying himself, "I can tell, it shows."  I wasn't satisfied with his response because he was definitely saying something without saying it, and I wanted to know what it was he was saying, darn it.  So he said, "nothing, you just act like you're old."

Yes, I took offense because I'm not old and as far as I'm concerned, I don't act old either.  Then I had to remember, my husband and I came from two different paths and backgrounds.  So what he remembers as fun, I cannot even relate to.  His stories makes mine seem, I guess boring! 

After we got to our destination, my mind was stuck on his statement and if you don't know it, the mind is a really tricky thing.  I was thinking things like, well if I'm so boring, why is he with me?, and I've heard the saying, "opposites attract", but I don't want nobody with me who thinks I act old and that I'm boring.  Boy, I tell ya, if we don't get the mind in check, it can definitely take us on a journey we didn't even intend to go on.  Thank God my friend came and interrupted my thoughts because we might of been divorced by now.

My spiritual father used to always say, an idle mind is the devil's workshop.  I'm assuming that means, this is where the enemy plants bad and negative thoughts, and such things.  I don't know where they come from, but I have them from time to time. 

***Slapping myself upside the head*** Dag it!  When I was getting dressed, I forgot to put on my armour.  I forgot to put on the helmet of salvation- to guard my thoughts from the enemy.  Now he is all up in my head making me think things that I should not be thinking.  I wasn't expecting him today, and he came in a way I least expected him to.  

I am reminded of the scripture that says, Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ..." 2 Corinthians 10:5
In other words, whenever we are approached with these kind of thoughts, we must quickly counter it with the Word of God.  If it does not align with the Word or knowledge of God, we can simply throw it out.  Just like an unwanted guest that has disrespected our house, THROW IT OUT.  Tell it, you got to go!     

My mother told me years ago that although a million thoughts can run through the mind at one time, if you start singing, the mind stops thinking.  I guess the mind is no longer idle when you start talking or singing.  I know it might sound crazy, but I promise you that it works.  Just try it! 

In the meantime, don't forget to put on the full armour of God daily.  The enemy is lying in wait and ready to attack.  Be watchful as well as pray. 

Stay Hopeful


Monday, August 29, 2011


I was thinking this morning, about one of the times we had went back home to visit.  After a fun-filled weekend of visiting with family and friends, it was now Sunday and time to pack it up and head back home.  During our commute, there was an accident on the interstate. As we were approaching the backed up traffic, my daughter, whom I had just picked up from one of her friends’ that she stayed with the weekend said, “Oh mommy, I forgot to tell you that Ms. Rhonda (her friend’s mother) told me to tell you there was a wreck on the interstate!”

My first reaction was, “Fine time to tell me!” Because had she told me this important piece of information at the time she was suppose to, I could have avoided this accident and delay! My daughter, being 17 has her own attitudes, so of course she gets on the defensive, and my attitude and frustration at this point won’t make it any better! (uuuuuuggggghhhhhh)!

However, as with all things, it got me to thinking------How many times have I allowed someone to run across a stumbling block or an accident b/c of my choosing not to say anything or warn them! How many times could I have prevented something from happening, if only I would have said something? Better yet, how many friends have I continued to allow to error w/o saying anything b/c I don’t want them to get mad or think I am judging them, etc! The bottom line is, we are to warn people of the danger up ahead, if they don’t listen, it’s on them, but if we don’t say anything, it’s on us. WOW!

Ezekiel 3:17-21 (New International Version)
17 "Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. 18 When I say to a wicked man, 'You will surely die,' and you do not warn him or speak out to dissuade him from his evil ways in order to save his life, that wicked man will die for [a] his sin, and I will hold you accountable for his blood. 19 But if you do warn the wicked man and he does not turn from his wickedness or from his evil ways, he will die for his sin; but you will have saved yourself.
20 "Again, when a righteous man turns from his righteousness and does evil, and I put a stumbling block before him, he will die. Since you did not warn him, he will die for his sin. The righteous things he did will not be remembered, and I will hold you accountable for his blood. 21 But if you do warn the righteous man not to sin and he does not sin, he will surely live because he took warning, and you will have saved yourself.



Thursday, June 9, 2011


I have finally made up in my mind that it is time for me to start back doing my daily morning walks.  I recalled an incident that happened to me last year:

My goal for my morning walks was to do at least 2 miles, which equals 4 laps around my apartment complex. This time, I was so tired, by the time I did 3 laps; I literally argued with myself whether I should stop or not. I mean come on; I was only one lap away from my daily goal. It made me wonder, how many times have I/WE gave up and were only "one lap" away from that prayer being answered? How many times have we got tired right before the end? AND QUIT?

Do you ever wonder what would have happened if you continued on and took those final steps? Would your marriage have been saved? Would you have that job? Would you have finished school, or that a particular project you had committed yourself to?  What would the results be if you kept going? Well, it's time to tell ourselves what I had to tell myself that particular morning, I AM NOT A QUITTER!

So come on; you are right there, almost to the finish line. I know you might be tired, but come on; it's only "one more lap"!

Stay Hopeful,


Wednesday, April 27, 2011


Yesterday, my daughter went to a particular store and purchased a pair of jeans.  After leaving the store, she decided to peruse another store where she found a pair of jeans on clearance for the “low low”.  After purchasing the clearance jeans, she attempted to take the first pair of jeans she bought back to the store and ask for a refund.  Unfortunately, the store does not do refunds and to be honest, she knew this before she went back to the store demanding one. 
After going back and forth with the cashier, my daughter left with a serious attitude and was very upset.  When she called me with her “dilemma”, I simply told her that rules are rules.  I advised her that it was totally uncalled for her to get mad about the rules someone has set in their establishment, especially when you know what the rules are.  You either follow and abide by their rules, or don’t shop there. 
As elementary as this may seem, it is a lesson that needs to be revisited often.  Not just for kids, but for adults as well.  Although we may not always like them or agree with them, rules are rules.  Some rules can be avoided by not associating yourself with a certain place, such as refusing to patron a certain establishment, but there are other rules or laws that we are bound by regardless, such as, not drinking and driving, not speeding, etc. 
One of my most favorite shows to watch on TV is Parking Wars.  I just love it when the people come outside to find that their cars have been ticketed, booted, towed or impounded because they have parked in a restricted area.   It doesn’t matter that they are in the wrong, they still carry on something ridiculous because they don’t want to deal with the consequences of them parking in the wrong place. 

The scripture that comes to mind is, Genesis 4:7 (NIV):  If you do what is right, will you not be accepted? But if you do not do what is right, sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you, but you must rule over it.”  Meaning, how can you expect good things to come out of wrong choices?  Naturally or spiritually? 
As with all things, we have a choice whether to abide by rules that are set, however, if ignored or not followed, it opens the door for aggravation, unnecessary attitudes and arguments, fines, loss of jobs, possible jail time, or even serious major DISASTERS, which could have all been avoided if we just simply follow the rules.  One thing we have to learn in life that there are consequences to every choice we make.  While we are 100% in control of our choices, we have no say about the consequences of our choices.   
Rules are set with a purpose, and for the most part when followed, there is less chaos.  Following other people rules or rules period, can definitely be challenging at times, especially when they don’t seem to fit our life or agenda.  As a mother, I love to establish them, but I don’t always like to follow them, however, at the end of the day, I’m just as much bound by them and whether I like them or not, rules are rules! 
Stay Hopeful,

Thursday, April 21, 2011


Recently, I had the opportunity to donate blood.  Although I don't like needles, the thought of possibly helping someone in need makes me feel really really good.  So, I try to donate as often as I can because, for all I know, I could be helping save someone's life. 

After thinking about the many benefits of me donating blood, I thought about the "Ultimate Blood Donor"!  His shedded blood, does so much more and last so much longer than mine could ever do.  The blood redeems us, the blood cleanses us,  the blood sets us free and most of all, the blood saves us.  There are so many benefits in the blood of the Lamb and I want you to know that no matter what you do or have done; no matter how bad you think it is; no matter how disgusting or trifling; I mean, there is nothing you can do or have done that the blood can't clean/erase/cure! The blood really does reaches to the highest mountain and flows to the lowest valley.

When Jesus died on the cross for our sins, the devil really didn't know the impact his death would really have on the world.....FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD THAT HE GAVE HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON, THAT WHOSOEVER BELIEVETH IN HIM SHALL NOT PERISH BUT HAVE EVERLASTING LIFE, JOHN 3:16....BUT the blood is so wonderful/powerful/awesome and there is nothing noone can do so bad that the blood can't redeem them from. BUT here is where I get excited! The sam power the blood had the day it was shed, is the same power it has today~ THE BLOOD WILL NEVER EVER LOSE IT'S POWER!!!

The enemy thinks that once you accept Christ as your Savior and if you mess up, that's it, but baby, know this, the blood is still just as effective today as it was yesterday.  It is an ever cleansing blood! So perhaps you have fallen, perhaps you have backslidden, and perhaps you have really messed up; THE BLOOD IS STILL EFFECTIVE...confess and repent, the blood will cleanse you AGAIN! Don't let the devil keep you bound in fear...I love Psalm 51....

Lastly, because of this GREAT sacrifice, I never take communion the same. I take it with a humble heart b/c I am so grateful for the blood that was shed. When I take communion, it is totally personal to me, b/c when I think of my past, my dirt, all of my junk, I am GRATEFUL. Then when I think of the times I messed up/ fell/ flaws and how the blood is still evident in my life today, I am even more GRATEFUL...May you embrace the power of the blood of Jesus and May communion never be the same for you again. May each time you partake in a communion, it will be such an experience for you.

In closing, I sing:  The blood, that Jesus shed for me.  Way back on calvary.  The blood that gives me strength from day to day. It will never lose it's power.  It reaches to the highest mountain, and it flows to the lowest valley. (oh yeah)  The blood that gives me strength, from day to day.  It will never lose it's power!

Stay Hopeful,


Monday, April 11, 2011


As I awaken this morning to a new day, I began to really think about what a “new day” means for me. It is a “new” opportunity to walk in the presence of God. It is a “new” opportunity to walk in purpose. It is a “new” opportunity to love, to laugh, to live, to play, to correct wrongs, to make change, to pursue, to forgive, to ask forgiveness, to help someone, to speak life, to start a business, to apply for jobs, to offer Christ to someone but more so, for you to accept Christ! I could go on and on, but I think you get my point.
Lamentations 3:22-23 (King James Version) (22)- It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. (23)- They are “new every morning”: great is thy faithfulness. What will you do with it? What does a “new day” means for you? I would love to hear from you!
Stay Hopeful,
Clarissa <3

Monday, March 28, 2011


This past weekend, my family was blessed with a new living room suit.  Because my nature is that of a giver, I didn’t just want to throw the old set away, but yet, give it to someone who was in need.  I sent out a few emails, and someone responded saying that they needed it.  When the person came and picked up the furniture, they expressed how much they really needed it and how this was such a blessing to his family.  I guess the saying, “one man’s junk is another man’s treasure” is definitely true!
When I think about this situation, I think about how God views us.  He sees the best in you and me!  Even when we think that we are worthless, not pretty, no good, or just a hot mess, God sees differently!  When our past constantly reminds us of our failures and wrong choices, God sees differently!   When others count you out and their feelings about you amounts to nothing, God sees differently!  When we feel like no one wants us, guess what?  God does!  He sees the value in you! 
I remember using an illustration in one of my sermons of a hundred dollar bill being balled up, thrown on the floor and trampled on.  When you pick it up, it is still a hundred dollars!  He might be wrinkled, dirty, battered, mistreated and misused, but it didn’t lose its worth! 
So, regardless what you’ve been told and been through, no matter what others seem to think about you or what you seem to think about yourself, you are precious to God.  He sees you beautiful.  And when it feels like no one wants you or you are not worth anything, God sees differently!  You are a treasure!

Stay Hopeful,


Wednesday, March 23, 2011


I was just sitting here at work and I thought about the song, “I believe I can fly”.  As I thought about the words of the song, it really began to speak volumes of confidence into my spirit that I can do anything I want to do! 
Often times we have goals, dreams and desires that for whatever reason, we never reach!  I’m understanding now, that it’s really up to ME!  Everybody is not going to always be on our team, so we are going to have to learn to be our own biggest cheerleader!   There’s nothing you can’t do!
Today!  Think about something that you really would like to do; then think about what’s keeping you from pursuing it.  After that, recite the words to this song (notice I added a little twist to the end) :
I believe I can fly! I believe I can touch the sky! I think about it every night and day! Spread my wings and fly away! I believe I can soar! I see me running through that open door! I believe I can fly! I believe I can fly! I believe I can fly! See; As long as I believe it, it really doesn't matter what anybody else thinks!
Do you believe it?

Stay Hopeful,


Wednesday, March 2, 2011


Today as I got on the elevator at work to get up to the 3rd floor, I realized after about 2 minutes that I hadn’t even left the 1st floor.  ***Slapping myself upside the head*** I realized I never pressed the button to take me to where I was trying to get to.   Funny thing about elevators, once the doors are closed, if you don’t press any buttons, you just sit there idle and never move. 
Too many times this is what happens to people who are trying to progress in life.  We jump on the elevator but never do what we need to do to progress forward or upward in this case.  Always starting something but never finishing what you started for whatever reason.   This can be with school, a relationship, a career, weight loss, and especially with our walk with God. 
My husband uses a term very often which is, “forward progress” when dealing with me.  In other words, “let’s keep it moving!”  It actually keeps me on my toes!   It keeps me from moving backwards or sitting in an idle state when I should be moving forward.  I must admit, I started a book several years ago and just stopped, but at the same time, I know this is something that God purposed within me to do, and the assignment is not going anywhere, but at the same time, it’s not going complete itself.  I have to do the work. 

The term "forward progress" is about progressing in whatever you have committed yourself to do.  It's about finishing what you started.  The only person who really has the power to completely stop you is you.  Sure you might face some obstacles along the way, but you have to keep persevering through whatever comes your way. 

So today, sit down and make a list of all the unfinished projects and unaccomplished assignments in your life.  The good news is, although we might be idle, all we have to do is press the button to move forward or upward.  It does us no good to get on the elevator and never move.  We will never get to our final destination in this idle state.   May I ask you, what are you waiting on?  You’ve hopped on the elevator, so don’t just sit here.  Press that button and let’s keep it moving!  FORWARD PROGRESS! 
Stay Hopeful,

Monday, February 7, 2011


Someone very dear to me, after working with a temp company for over a year without ANY benefits, finally receive the opportunity to become permanent at the company where she placed.  When the offer letter was received, the actual hourly rate was not much more than what was being made currently through the temp agency.   Of course this was a little saddening and disappointing but after sitting down and evaluating the whole thing, this is what was found:
1.  Automatic paid holidays and additional paid days off, which she didn't get with the temp agency b/c there are NO benefits.
2.  Automatically eligible to apply for other positions immediately, which can generate an increase in pay.
3.  Automatically eligible for health and dental plans that she did not have through the temp agency.
4.  Automatically eligible for additional bonus payouts that she was not previously eligible for, while being a temp employee.
So in the end, the hourly dollar amount was not much but the overall amount was so much greater.  As I sat thinking about this, I thought about when we transition over to the Lord's side. We may struggle, face persecution, lose friends, experience losses, and sometimes feel as though we can't make it.  Sometimes we even ask ourselves, "Is it all worth it?”  or may have even felt that things were better off before getting saved, but we fail to see the overall benefits of our salvation.
I’m a firm believer that when viewing things, it’s all in how you view it.  Have you ever heard the example of the half glass of water?  Some will view it half full, and others will view it half empty, but again, it’s all in how you look at it.  Sometimes we fail to see the overall picture.  Sometimes we fail to see the positive in a negative situation.  Sometimes we fail to look beyond what’s right before our eyes, and sometimes we fail to see the blessing, in what we consider a mess. 
Sometimes the road traveled gets lonely and hard, but I remember these words from my previous Pastor, “living for Christ gets hard sometimes and the pay is not always that great, but the benefits are out of this world!” 
Stay Hopeful,