Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Hypocrisy at its best

This morning I woke up and turned on the news, Fox 4 KC, as I do daily and was immediately confused when I heard Mark Alford and Lauren Halifax asking viewers to respect the family at this time and to please bear with them...that this is a time for family. So for an hour I have been watching the news trying to figure out what they were talking about until I received a phone call. A friend of mine called and informed me that meteorologist, Don Harman, has passed away. I was immediately saddened by the news. I truly enjoyed watching him on the news and listening to weather reports in the past on radio stations. He was a true character and a ray of sunshine on the show.
As I was watching the news, another friend sent me a message regarding hypocrites. As I was responding, something hit me. Although the news isn't intentionally acting in hypocrisy but what they are doing regarding the passing of their own friend/family/co-worker is hypocrisy at its best! They are asking viewers to respect the family and to bear with them as this is a time for family. I had to let out a sarcastic chuckle on that. I'm thinking about the many people who may have dealt with something and the News Stations didn't respect that family's wishes.
In 1998 my family had to suffer through a painful loss of a family member by a tragic accident. My younger cousin was accidentally shot by a family member in my home. By the time the hospital called and declared my cousin as deceased, there were several news stations at my home. We pleaded with the news stations to not show our home, not to request for interviews, basically to allow our family to process what had just happened and let us deal with the loss of a loved one. One of the responses that we received was "we're going to do this story". Anger arose within. Some news stations did leave and ask what we could do at a later time. Some followed family members to different areas (police stations, hospitals, etc). We allowed a vigil to occur down the street from our home and we attended. Of course the news stations were very much present. Later that night we watched the news (flicking through different stations) and saw the many attempts to get to our home....disrespecting our family's wishes. We saw how the news interviewed neighbors, asking what type of family we were. I am very thankful for our neighbors. We've heard many positive compliments and received much support.
During this WHOLE time, it felt that we were hounded and bombarded by the media. This morning to hear the news station request respect from it's you see where my sarcastic chuckle came from, hypocrisy at its best. Yes, I understand that the reporters are only doing their job. The News is THE NEWS. Will this incident change the response for future reports? Maybe.....then again, maybe not.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Grieving Child

Life has it's way of throwing curve balls when you least expect. One of those curve balls is death. Yes, we all know that death is a part of life but when it hits's a whole different ballgame. On November 17, 2011 my children, along with hundreds of other people, began to grieve a loss of a loved one...Waylon Greene. My children attended school with Waylon and have developed a really close friendship with him. As I spoke to my children about it, I began to notice the heartache and sadness in their voices. My daughter was closer to Waylon than my son but my son expressed hurt because his sister was hurting. The only thing my son could think about was his sister's sadness. That speaks volume for the love that they have for one another. This is not the first death of a friend that my children have experienced. This is the third death of a friend in 6 months. How do you deal with that??
As I am thinking and praying about ways to comfort my children, I began to think of God's love for us. These three children died for a reason unbeknownst to men. Then I thought to myself....I wonder if these children knew God? Were they saved? Did someone take the time out to share the Gospel with them? Although these moments are very sad and heartbreaking, the work of the Lord must continue. I will continue to encourage my children to share the Gospel with their friends and others they come into contact with.
As I speak about encouraging my children to share the Gospel, I want to encourage you as well.

Be Blessed.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

What is too young?

One of the fears of being a parent is knowing that one day your child will hit puberty. At that time the body changes and wants to do it's own thing in which certain feelings and desires come about. Then we as parents begin to wonder when we need to have that "talk" with our child(ren). At what age should you begin talking to a child about sex?

If you're one to read/follow my blogs you know that I have two children, a son and daughter. My son is 13 (he will be the big 14 on Christmas Eve....time is surely flying by....ok ok, back to the blog) and my daughter just turned 12 (you would think that she is 30). As they were growing up I kept thinking...when should I sit them down to have the talk. I remember taking my children to the doctor when they were around 4 or 5 and the doctor asked them about good touch/bad touch. At that moment I realized that this talk is going to happen in phases. Children need to know at an early age what is appropriate and what's inappropriate. Every now and then I would ask my children about good/bad touch, just to make sure that they understood. When they hit elementary school other factors came into play. I had to think about what they were exposed to. On one particular day, my daughter came home and told me that two children were kissing and talking about sex on the playground (she was in the first grade at this time). I was thinking "WHAT...where in the blank blank did these kids get this from". Instead of reacting hysterically, I asked my daughter "what do you think about what you saw". She told me that it was nasty and that kids shouldn't be doing those types of things. I then asked her why. She responded by telling me that it's not right. It was then that I began to share a little more with her. I then asked my son about the kids his age and what are some of the things that he is seeing. Oh by the way, he was in third grade at the time. He informed me that his friends were talking about sex. I asked him how did he feel about it. He told me the typical child answer. "it's nasty and it's not right". Of course I asked why is it nasty and not right. He began to tell me that having sex when you're not married isn't right and God wants you to wait. I was stunned by his answer yet pleased coming from a 9 year old. At that time, I began to share a little more.

Once my children hit the double digits, I realized that the time is going to come for me to go more in depth. I started to think back on when I had my first kiss...etc. I realized that I really need to make it a point to make sure that they understand the implications and complications when it comes to sex. As each year passes I began to share more with my children.

 It's all a matter of maturity. As their bodies develop and change, they need to understand what it going on and why. You know the maturity level of your child(ren). At 12 and 13 my children know about sex and everything that can and could come along with it; mentally, physically, and spiritually. Society is playing a major part in our children's lives when it comes to sex. This is not a one time conversation that you have with a pre-teen. Start early with just touch and continue to talk to your child(ren) as they mature.

As always....Be Blessed!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Building Relationships

There are many reasons why one becomes a single parent; child out of wedlock, divorce, death, adoption/guardianship, caring for a child, etc. In which ever way it happened. Now the burden is on you to fill the parental role that has been designed for two. Sometimes this parental role is extremely tough. For a single mother, it would be hard for her to display a father's love as well it would be hard for a single father to display a mother's love. This is where you show strength in looking at others. Not to fill the void but to support you in the parental process.

I am a single mother of two, a son and daughter. Not having a male in the home can become difficult. Who is going to teach my son how to be a man? Who is going to show my daughter the genuine love from a man? I can only do so much. As I ask myself those questions, I began to think about the people in our lives. My children are blessed to be able to have a father that is still a part of their lives. But it doesn't stop there. My children have god-parents that have been nothing but a gift from God. Through their god-parents, my children get a sense of what marriage is suppose to look like. Their god mother, Theresa Sheffield, is a model of a godly wife, not only for my daughter but for me (if God leads me in that direction). My daughter will be able to see how a godly wife should serve her family. Their god father, DeLano Sheffield, is a model of a godly husband. My son will be able to see how a man should lead his home and treat his wife in the way God has designed it to be. Then there are other role models, our Youth Pastor, Antoine Richardson. I've entrusted my children to Pastor Richardson's hands on Sunday mornings and Wednesday evenings to help their spiritual growth and development. Through that, a relationship has grown. My children are able to see another example of a godly man, husband, and father. His wife, Dr. Sequita Richardson, displays the characteristics of a godly wife, mother, friend, and physician. I've been able to entrust her with our family's health physically and spiritually. Then there are friends who know you're struggling and don't ask questions....they just do. I don't want to start listing names because I don't want to leave anyone out. Last but not at all least....FAMILY. My father has not only been PaPa to my children but another father figure as well. It would take another blog entry to talk about my dad.

I say all of this to godly relationships with others. Earlier I said that there are several ways that one becomes a single parent. Be a support to others as well. God has not designed for the Christian walk to be lonely so don't live life that way.

Be Blessed!

Be Blessed!!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

What are you leaving behind?

As I sit and reflect on people that have passed on, I wonder.....what am I leaving behind? What is my legacy? How will people remember me?
There have been many professional entertainers that have passed on, but the death of Heavy D really got to me. As I reflect on him, I remember growing up and dancing to his music. Not only me, but my mother, father, brothers and other family members as well. He had music that the whole family could listen to. True hip hop. He sang songs about how he wants to love and find that one that will lead to happiness. I also think about how he was on several television shows and he was the same guy....a man full of smiles. His presence will surely be missed. Other things that were going on during the time of his death was the trial for Dr. Conrad Murray, the doctor for the legendary pop artist, Michael Jackson. As I reflect on the death of Michael Jackson, yes the first thought was WOW, he was a real icon. But then I began to think on the trials that he faced throughout his life and then I began to think about his spiritual life. It was reported that Michael Jackson was a Jehovah Witness. Thinking about that is when my heart began to sink. There is only one way into heaven and that is through Jesus. So, there's the speculation on whether or not he's with the Father.
I used these two major icons because they were well known for their contribution to the entertainment/music scene. They were a major influence and role models to many. Thinking about all of this made me ask myself, when I go on to glory, what will I leave behind?
Being a single parent, I had to work a little harder when it came to raising the children. My children will remember me being at their games, working two jobs to provide for them, coming to school functions, and will share many disciplinary stories. But will they remember me praying for them? Will they remember how I allowed God to use me to lead them to Christ? Will they say, "mom really loved the Lord"?
The most important thing that I can think to leave behind is the love of Christ. If I can share his love with others then I have really left something that is significant for others. Yes, the other things sound good but having the comfort of knowing that someone is with the Lord provides a sense of peace for healing and hope for others to know that one day you will be reunited with that person. Jesus left the most greatest gift behind.....Himself. His legacy exceeds any other. Because of Him, we have the opportunity to live for eternity.
As you live the rest of your days, think about what you're leaving behind.

Be Blessed