The Struggle is Real

Somedays, the confidence in who I have become is almost mesmerizing…to myself. Other days, the struggle is real…so very real. Does anyone else go through this?

Often, I wonder if anyone else actually goes through the struggles of purpose, pertinence, and passion. I walk through life with a limp and wonder if I’m just simply destined to embrace these struggles for eternity, never really getting beyond them, just settling for a toleration, a sort of cease-fire, until the moment of intimidation or fear of rejection creeps back into view. I watch as many of my friends seem to have it all together, or at the least, are so comfortable in their own skin, in their own calling and in their own life choices that they don’t seem to battle the same mind games and moments of hesitation.

Then, I see from whence I’ve come, and I see those who have gone before who are still struggling for this place of significance and value. I see those who have won the battles and those who are still wallowing in their demise. This is the moment my determination and fight, and solidarity with Scripture, comes into clear focus. I realize in this moment, there is no turning back. Retreat is not an option. Failure can not be part of the equation.

Philippians 3:14, “I press toward the goal for this the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

Hebrews 12:1, “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

Philippians 4:13, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

The struggles we face aren’t only given to us for our own learning, our own character-building and our personal faith-strengthening. The victories on the other side of those struggles are not only for us and our own celebrations. These are to be a witness to those coming behind us. These are to become testimonies which help someone else to achieve more than we ever imagined. These are to stand as pillars, mile markers and ancient boundary stones to mark the way for those coming behind, to help them find their way through similar struggles, and to enable them to achieve more victories than we ever thought possible!

So resist that urge to quit! Keep up the struggle for as long as it takes, and win that fight toward your destiny! Clear the path, and strategically change those battle lines to victory, and set those boundaries in place that scream to the world you have won! So then, all who encounter these will know, “There is hope! You can fight and win, too!”

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Southern Heart

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I am a Southern girl, born and bred, and I am proud of it. In the South, we grew up knowing trust in God, family and country were three of the most important things to take care of in life, and when one of those got out of balance, the others were soon to follow. We were taught to respect our elders, appreciate our relatives, (even if they’re a little crazy), and good friends and food go a long way to make a good day great. Old dirt roads are best enjoyed on the back of a pick up truck, and front porches were made for rocking chairs and long late night talks. Fireflies were made to catch in mason jars and catfish were made to fry up for dinner. Sweet tea is made only when the sugar is poured before the tea gets cold, and chicken is best served fried with a side of mashed potatoes, gravy and biscuits…oh, and with an apple pie for dessert.  “Yes ma’am,” “No, ma’am,” and The Pledge of Allegiance isn’t just polite, it’s expected, and being a sass mouth is just plain rude…there can be found a hickory switch or two for that one. Barefoot and swimming holes are sought for in the summertime and wintertime is simply harder to find. Thanksgiving is for pumpkin pies, turkey and dressing, and Christmas is for gatherings of family and friends to remember our Savior’s birth and sing of that glorious story. Being from the South makes up who I am, and even if I wasn’t born here, I don’t think you could drag me away. It’s in my heart, and it’s here to stay.

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If you aren’t from the South, don’t like the South, or you’ve never been here, that’s ok. You may be proud of where you’re from, too. You don’t have to love my home, and I don’t have to love yours, but I will try to respect it; that’s just the Southern way. 😉 It bothers me to no end those who ridicule the South by saying we’re less educated or less cultured, because our dialect is a little different than theirs, or because we didn’t grow up where they did. I won’t spend a lot of time here on that soapbox; however, I don’t believe it’s from whence you came that makes you smarter or more stupid than the next guy; it’s all in how you act, react and treat your fellow man that will determine your intellect or lack thereof.

I am so thankful to be from the South, and I can’t think of many other places I’d rather live. I’ve been to many other states, and I’ve yet to find an area I like more. So, if you’re from the South, “Welcome Home, Ya’ll!” and if you’re not, “Come on back to see us soon!”

Daily Prompt: South

Cloud of Lies

You walk around in a cloud. 

Voices are heard. Faces are seen. 

Yet you never realize where they lean. 

You paint a smile. You wave a hand. 

Yet you never recognize where they land. 

     

They run ever fast, but never arrive. 

Opinions are spoken. Agendas are made. 

Yet they never hear truth inside the raid. 

They fight. They scramble for their own selfish sight. 

Yet they never listen to anything that is right. 


We spill out the words, never making sense. 

Abuses are dreamt. Fantasies are taken. 

Yet standards of honesty and peace are forsaken

We believe. We trust this is the better way. 

Yet our children are being raised within the broken fray. 


You walk around in a cloud. 

Voices are heard. Faces are seen. 

Yet you never know death is knocking; all is serene. 

You live your life thinking this is the best. 

Yet you never surrender; all are trying to find rest. 


Penned – MG – 6/10/15

The Will

     An empty daughter of depression, with a strong temper and a determined will, she traveled all her life in search of her true inheritance.  She had lost her mother as an infant, and her father at the age of seven.  Somehow, she fell through the cracks of the state system, and she grew up on the rough side of town, going from place to place, one gang to another just to survive.  She would steal for them, make distractions for them, and even turn tricks for them; anything they told her, she would do. This lifestyle made her tough, a rebel from the darker side of town; yet, she hated this life.  She knew there had to be more.  She wanted a purpose in her life, a reason to love, a reason to hate, a reason to live.

     She finally left her gang, at the age of seventeen, determined to find a better place and a new life for herself.  She remembered her father telling her stories of his past and of her mother. He had told her of a rich heritage, lots of wealth and success; however, each of them had been disowned, because they were determined to marry outside the families’ prestigious arrangements. The young girl thought, maybe, perhaps, a chance meeting would make the difference for her………

 

Penned – MG – began 1/15/90