Life Update

The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. -Psalm 37:23 NKJV

Good morning friends,

I hope that you are well! I’ve been somewhat of a slacker when it come to blogging lately, and I wanted to give you all an update on how life has been in the past month or so. I’m not generally one to share what’s going on in the midst off it, but I feel that my story may give someone a little hope or encouragement to continue to trust God.

I graduated with my Bachelor’s degree on May 11th. Image God helped me to finish a degree that I spent 5 years working towards. There were trials, bumps in the road and really rough days, but He saw me through it and I’m so thankful for Him. My family and friends celebrated, I received gifts and lots of congratulations! It was wonderful. Graduation day and was by far one of the best days of my life. Through choosing to finish my degree after having to take a short absence from school, God taught me discipline, persistence, perseverance and what it means to finish what you start. I’m blessed to have experienced that chapter of life.

ImageAfter graduation, I moved back home with my mom and sis. What an awesome summer I had! I was able to witness my good friends Mike & Charmaine get married, see my big sis Makeda get married, apply for jobs, go to in-home Bible studies, meet some friends in person for the first time, spend time with my church family, read tons of books, pray for others, serve & think really hard about what God has made me good at. 

After some months of searching and interviewing for jobs that didn’t work out, I began to wonder about where I was supposed to be. During the spring, I asked God to give me a change of scenery. Atlanta was great for school, but I felt that I had already learned the lessons I was supposed to learn there. And moving back to my hometown was not what I thought would be best for me. I had been praying for months that God would order my steps and I knew that He was going to make it clear for me, but I also knew that I would have to make an important decision about what I would do. Near the middle of July, I was given the opportunity to apply for a job at a company located in Pennsylvania. Both sides of my family are from PA, so it was a really great opportunity to be close to my family again. However, I went to school to teach middle school, so I was slightly conflicted about what to do. Stay in Georgia and apply for more jobs, or move to Pennsylvania and interview for the awesome job in front of me? After much prayer and contemplation, God showed me why I should go and how I could impact things if I moved. After that, I packed my bags and moved 4 days later.

I arrived in Philadelphia on Friday, I interviewed on Wednesday morning and I was told that I had the job on Wednesday evening. It was awesome getting that phone call! I was beyond excited and I know that it was all God because my interview process was intense. Since moving here 3 weeks ago, I have seen God do great things. He’s also shown me again and again why I am here at this time. I have been able to connect with and serve my family, learn a lot about myself, make some major decisions & begin preparing my life for the next phase. I started my job this past Monday and I’m enjoying the company, my co-workers and my work. I’m also very excited about the emphasis on integrity at my company. Also, I found a church yesterday that I connected with completely. I am overjoyed! The past 3 weeks have been some of the best weeks I’ve had in years.

So, I’ve been away but it’s because I’ve been consumed with reading Bible stories to my nieces, throwing the football with my nephew, swimming days, family picnics, night time devotion, cooking, learning about my job, finding a church and all the other awesome things people do when they move closer to family. Overall, I’ve been blown away by God’s faithfulness, His love and His timing! None of this could have happened without Him. I love Him! ^_^

ImageAfter going through some really rough time in the past year and having to persevere, I’m blessed to see that God is doing great things for me in this season. I’m grateful. I’m hopeful. I’m excited. I’m blessed. Please keep me in your prayers!

Thanks for reading,

Brittany

You’re off to Great Places! Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting, So… get on your way! – Dr. Seuss

His Passion and Purity

This post is a guest post written by my partner for this series Jovontae. To read my post, visit his blog here.

Love and relationships is a topic that can appeal to any and everyone. There are many perspectives and ways of looking at this topic. Going even deeper, one’s worldview also influences the way one looks at love and relationships.

DISCLAIMER: I am a male. I am a virgin. I’ve never been in an official relationship. I am unabashedly christian. I believe that it is difficult, if not incomplete, to discuss and dissect love without God. So, this is the platform which I’ll be basing my stance.

There are a MYRIAD of books in christian culture that discuss this topic. Some are old, some are new. Some are old school, some are hip and trendy. Some from written from a male’s perspective, other from women. You get the idea right? From laypeople, ordained ministers to Doctors, there are hundreds of view to gather information on this topic from. There is but one book that I’ll be discussing: Passion and Purity. Mention this book in most christian circles and you’re guaranteed to elicit some response. It’s that famous.

Passion and Purity is a book written by speaker and former missionary Elisabeth Elliot. The book is half expository half auto-biography. In addition to giving insight and advice from a biblical perspective, she also recalls the process of courting and eventually marrying her college sweetheart Jim Elliot, to flesh out the things she’s explaining.

Some say the book is archaic, that it is too outdated for today’s progressive world. While I understand, I believe this book can be just as effective to a reader as when it first came out. She has a way of speaking to matters of the heart very accurately and bringing scripture to the picture. It’s a rare ability. Another complaint is that it’s just for women. I actually laugh at this postulation. While it is written by a woman, who’s describing her experience, and using stories of women who write to her, I still believe that men can, and should, read this. The example of her ex-husband Jim alone is worth reading about. I’ll be briefly explaining the first chapter.

The first chapter sets up the tone of the book. You learn about Elisabeth in college years. She describes her looks in a very quaint manner. My partner on this Blog series, Brittany, says this is key. Women are expected to care tremendously about their looks. You’ll see that, while she does mention her looks (“like most girls, I wished I were pretty, but it seemed futile to tamper much with what I had been given…) the emphasis is placed on her character and her dynamic relationship with God; which in of itself is counter-cultural. From there she describes the current state of society (“We have Sex and the Single Girl now. We have freedom. We can, in fact, ‘have it all and not get hooked.’ Women can be predators if they want to, as well as men.”). She touches on societal pressures on men: (“Men aren’t men unless they’ve proved it by seducing as many women as possible – or as many men, for we now may choose according to our ‘sexual preference’.”). To be honest my favorite quote from this chapter: “In forfeiting the sanctity by casual, nondiscriminatory ‘making out’ and ‘sleeping around,’ we forfeit something we cannot do well without. There is dullness, monotony, sheer boredom in all of life when virginity and purity are no longer protected and prized. By trying to grab fulfillment everywhere, we find it nowhere.” 

The last statement is a bold one. We live in a pretty hedonistic, do-as-thou-pleases society. We should never judge another on the things they decide to enjoy. Sex is good! Why not right? That’s the thing about pleasure: it is always fleeting. We’re always going to and fro to the next big thing, but it will always elude us. She says that “There is dullness, monotony, sheer boredom in all of life when virginity and purity are no longer protected and prized” I can’t tell you how many “oh, that’s interesting” looks I’ve gotten whenever I mention I’m a virgin. It’s cool (to an extent) for girls to be chaste, but men are validated by their sexual prowess. Since I have none, either I’m gay, scared, or medically impaired. Neither is true. I love God. I realize that some things in life have to be sacred in order to truly enjoy them. Unpopular? Yes. Necessary? I think so. Man has a natural fascination with Mystery. If we eliminate that and make plain what is sacred, all we have left is morbidity and boring, sanitized living. Pleasure and things like that exist to lift up higher to the One from which they come from. (see Anna Stesia by Prince)

Once we see this, we are well on our way to finding the fulfillment these lonely hearts yearn for.

Pray Church part 1 – Pastor Myron Edmonds

sermonPray Church part 1 – Pastor Myron Edmonds

This is one of the best sermons on prayer that I’ve heard in a while. It’s a practical message on why we need to be intentional about prayer. Pastor Myron Edmonds of Glenville SDA Church in Cleveland, Ohio plows through the book of Acts to explore the idea that miracles happen when prayer is present. Excellent message!