We have all heard it’s far better to give then receive and most of us even consider ourselves a giver to some degree. A true giver though, gives out of a genuine place which is a place that has no self serving motives behind it.
A gift is a gift. When the gift giving is used as leverage (I.e brought up later and thrown in someone’s face, or posted on social media so everyone can see you’re a giver, etc) is cancels the kindness, voids the genuine aspect.
I have learned that the true test of giving comes when you do something for someone who can never repay you. Most people relate giving to material things but this isn’t always the case. Most people are comfortable with giving until it makes them uncomfortable.
People are often times more comfortable with giving you a material item before giving you a sincere congratulations. Isn’t that crazy? Most people are okay with buying you a meal, but it’s almost impossible for them to be happy for you, especially if you get something they want or need for themselves. I have found though that this is a true measure of the condition of your heart. Are you able to pray for someone’s healing when you yourself are sick? Are you able to celebrate a marriage if your own is in turmoil? Are you able to congratulate someone’s success while you yourself are grinding away? Now ask yourself, are you truly a giver?
Are you prepared or are you a bang & fizzle? A bang & fizzle person is someone who has a million ideas, starts with a bang but ends with a fizzle. They never really see anything through to the end and eventually just have a million ideas that have all started with a bang but all ended with a fizzle. I’ve done it myself especially when I was a brand new entrepreneur. I have learned through my years of experience (both successes and failures) that a lot of the time the reason for the fizzle is unpreparedness.
This doesn’t relate to only business though, often times we are not even prepared for the things we desire or are praying for. Sometimes we even can find ourselves frustrated when we have an idea or vision that we feel in our heart is the right thing to do or something God gave us but then it doesn’t quite fall into place like we expect or as quickly as we thought it would. We can’t receive new blessings with an old mindset. People pray for a spouse without making any preparation to actually be a spouse . People want to start a business but never actually sit down and write a business plan. People want to go back to school but never figure out how they’re going to re-arrange their schedule to fit in time for class and homework. People think they’re ready for a promotion but lack the ability to control their own emotions which directly impacts your ability to lead anything. So many people want to break into the music game but never research how much of their own money they’ll have to invest in order to generate a buzz. There’s a whole lot of folks praying for the winning power ball numbers and think all of their problems in life will be solved with millions of dollars but they can’t even wisely manage a tax refund. The list goes on and on.
If you ever sit down with a successful person and ask them how they became so successful, the first thing they’ll normally tell you is about is all the time they were unsuccessful. Don’t compare your journey to someone else’s or envy what someone else has because you have no idea what they went through or sacrificed to get there. If you believe in the vision you have, take the time to prepare for it properly. Do your research, date yourself, learn how to budget, and do whatever else is necessary to help you be in the best position to receive what you’re asking for or working towards.
The best relationship advice I ever received was, “Don’t settle for Ishmael because God has your Isaac on the way.” At the time I received this advice, I ignored this advice and ended up in the WORST relationship I had ever experienced and almost lost my life. The point is, WAIT ON GOD. Don’t settle, don’t try to help God out, don’t try to hurry Him along, and don’t try to dress up the Ishmael YOU chose and parade him around like he’s Isaac. We can save ourselves a lot of necessary pain, tears, and delay of our promise if we learn to just WAIT.
For those of you who may not be familiar with this bible story I’ll give you a quick overview (strongly encourage you to look it up and read it for yourself it begins Genesis 17) God tells Abraham’s wife Sarah that she’s going to have a baby, she’s already 90 and decides to “help God out” and tells her husband to go into her maid and that’s when Ishmael is born. As you can imagine that didn’t go over too well when the baby got here and there was quite the commotion, and to make a long story short Isaac was born as God had promised and they could have saved themselves a whole bunch of trouble had they had just been patient.
Since February is the month that most couples celebrate Valentine’s Day, I decided that Love Stories will be the reader blog submission theme for the month.
If you want to submit your love story to be published via queentheprophet.com at NO-CHARGE (except 2/14/14) during the month of February:
- Write your story and submit via email to email@example.com put “FEB BLOG” in the subject line
- Please include any pictures or photos you would like to include
- Please also include your Twitter @name if applicable
$5.00 VALENTINE’S DAY SPECIAL: If you would like to have your love story/ or any special personalized Valentine’s Day message published on Valentine’s Day 2/14/14 the cost is $5.00 (USD). Please send inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org NO LATER than February 13, 2014 5:00 p.m. EST
Some of you may or may not know that I am an actual relationship counselor / marriage educator but in my opinion since I’ve had so many of my own personal disasters in relationships, it well qualifies me to speak on the subject. I see something with couples over and over and over again that quite frankly it is purely annoying. Have you ever noticed when couples break up, all of the sudden they have a new lease on life? Everybody’s in the gym, getting make-overs, etc. ? I know I’m going to step on some toes, but seriously think about this… did you ever stop and think maybe if you did those things while you were in your relationship you’d still be in one?
Fam there are some relationships that need to be over, don’t mistake what I’m saying. There are some relationships that both parties have done so much dirt, there really is no healthy way to recover. For some reason most people are under the impression it is the other person’s job to make them happy. It’s not. Your happiness is your job. A good portion of this is people have no idea how to be single. Being single successfully means that you find meaningful activities in life that you enjoy all by yourself. You know how to take care of you and your business without someone’s help. Ideally, you then should consider these things in a partner before getting involved. Two half people don’t and won’t ever make one whole person. The key to being successfully single is becoming a whole person on your own before you find yourself engaged with another person.
In a healthy relationship there is mutual love, respect, trust, and decision. Decision means the decision to love & commit. Nobody feels in love all the time and anyone that says they do is a liar. Commitment is a decision. Sometimes it’s a decision we have to remind ourselves of all the time, especially when the flame of love is burning dim. No relationship is perfect and every relationship goes through hard times. There are things though that you can stay on top of in order to help that flame keep burning.
- ADMIT WHEN YOU NEED HELP- Asking for help is not a sign of weakness. If your relationship is in trouble, get help. The first relational example people have is their parents. Nobody’s parents are perfect, but if you have never had a good role model of what a healthy relationship looks like, chances are it’s very difficult for you to nail down what you should be doing. We are products of our environment and we need to be mature enough to realize that consciously or not, it affects us.
- KEEP YOURSELF RIGHT- Lots of people get too comfortable in relationships. Just because you’re in a committed relationship now, does not mean that you now have a pass to be a slob. If you and your partner were both always slobs, then slob away. In most cases though, the consistent complaint for both men and women is that their partner does not take care of themselves anymore. Your health and appearance should be a concern of yours. You don’t have to be a runway model or posing for GQ, but you should keep yourself neat, clean, and comb your hair.
- DATE NIGHT- Even if you have kids, you have to schedule a date night. If money is an issue, go for a walk. Couples need couple time. Family time is different.
- OUTSIDERS- Stop bringing everyone into your relationship! Married people: STOP ASKING SINGLE PEOPLE OR PEOPLE WHO HAVE NEVER BEEN MARRIED FOR ADVICE! I’m not even going to explain that because if you can’t figure out why that’s the worst idea ever, you may just need to learn on your own.
- THE FAM- Be very careful what you tell your family & friends. YOUR Family and YOUR friends are always going to be on YOUR side. It’s not necessary to tell your Sister every time your husband does anything that annoys you because then it automatically annoys her and she’ll be less forgiving because it’s not her husband. ( Any form of abuse is a whole other story) When you do this, it also puts you at high risk of absorbing someone else’s problems. You ever have that one co-worker that hates work, then all of the sudden before Friday there’s now a clan of people who hate work? Misery loves company.
- HOW YOU GET EM, IS HOW YOU KEEP EM. – This is my own personal theory. If you’re a guy who calls every morning and every night, you have now set the bar in the relationship that you will always be a communicator. If you’re a woman who cooks for him every night, you have now set the bar that you’re someone who cooks. The beginning of a relationship is crucial time that you unknowingly or not set the standard for what the other person can expect. This works in reverse too though. If the woman doesn’t keep her house decent as a girlfriend, don’t expect her to be a wife or a mother now and magically keep house. If he’s a jobless boyfriend most of the time, don’t expect an employed husband.
I always get chewed out for this comparison at first, but it’s the God’s honest truth. Relationships (all kinds) are business decisions. That relationship is going to be an asset or liability. When an insurance company picks your rate, they give you that rate based on the evidence they have in front of them about you as a driver. Before getting into a relationship, look at what you already know. Some of us could and could have saved ourselves a lot of time and trouble had we done this.
“Relationships are gardens. You can’t expect to harvest what you don’t plant. “- QTP
Check your baggage before boarding!
If you have ever traveled by airplane you know that your baggage is only allowed to weigh a certain amount or it will not be boarded. Some of your bags are too big to be carry-on’s and must be stored at another part of the plane while some bags you can carry on the plane. Both sets however, must meet the weight requirements. How much trouble would it save us if before we decided to date someone, we could put their soul on a spiritual baggage scale? We’d then know in a moment if this soul was too heavy to fly with.(BRAINFOOD… Pay attention)
Unfortunatley, lots of us move from relationship to relationship and never check our baggage before boarding. This often times results in us repeating the same cycle in relationships, often with similar patterns or problems. Checking your baggage can be a lengthy and painful process sometimes. Only you and God know what truly has formed your thoughts, behaviors, and emotions over the course of your life. It is not fair for you to get into a relationship with someone else without taking a self inventory of what you’re bringing to the table. Take a look at the list below and answer the following questions honestly.
- I have been a victim/witness/abuser of child abuse
- I have been a victim/witness/abuser of sexual abuse
- I have been a victim/ witness/abuser of domestic violence
- I have been married before
- I have been divorced
- I am legally separated
- I have no contact with any family
- I have been homeless
- I have experienced substance abuse either self or family
- I have experienced a horrific disaster natural or otherwise
- I have filed bankruptcy
- I have been incarcerated
- I have experienced trouble with the law self or immediate family
- I have been a victim/witness/abuser of spiritual abuse either by family or ministry
- I have been adopted
- I was raised in foster care
- I have an un-treated mental illness
- I was raised by family other than my peternal Mother and Father
- I was raised in a single parent home
- I have children and have never been married
- I have unresolved immediate family issues
All of us (including myself) have experienced these kinds of things in life. These kinds of things chart paths in our lives and sometimes leave lasting impressions. Relationships are most successful when the two people involved are both whole people on their own FIRST. Two half people don’t make two whole. We have to give ourselves permission to heal and ask for help sometimes. I point these things out because unhealed pain from those things can start growing weeds in every other area of your life. Give yourself permission to get to know yourself. It is so unfair to make another person pay for a heart they didn’t break. It’s mostly though, unfair to yourself. Life is short, it’s percious. Live it at it’s maximum capacity, especially in love.
#RAWTRUTH101 #Sex verses #Love
I may step on some toes with this one but the one thing I don’t ever do, is lie to you. Fam, If you’ve read any of my other articles, you already know I speak from a place of both experience and formal education… except in my case, the education came AFTER I already had the experiences.
God designed sex to be an intimate form of expression & bonding between husband & wife. Hence the reason you grow attached to a person when you have sex and if you don’t you’re probably immune to the feelings that go with it because you’ve had so much sex. I’ve also found to be VERY true in ALL CASES the crazier a person is, the more people they’ve had sex with. Now God knows I am no bible thumper and I am a train wreck, this isn’t judgment… it’s the TRUTH. Anything in life you’re exposed to enough, you develop either an understanding of it or you become immune to it because you just get used to it. Pause. Do you know how dangerous this is when we talk about being immune to taking off your clothes and having intercourse? Some of us (too many of us) were ROBBED from ever fully grasping the beauty that is SUPPOSED to come with sex. Some of us (myself included) became the kind of people that just didn’t care. We were immune.
Most relationships today are a joke. People have sex a few times then get together and they have no idea who the other person really is. Sex is spun so freely in every media channel you go through. Folks that can’t handle all the sex being thrown around on social media ARE NOT relationship ready, and if you get into one with a person who is NOT READY, you WILL get your feelings hurt. Fam… what happened to love? For me it didn’t even hit me until the last few years. I started to change. Thinking about having someone touch me who didn’t love me made me sick. For me this was ultra sickening because I was married to a person who didn’t love me and that is a whole other article. The more I studied love, relationships, and analyzing behaviors that worked versus ones that didn’t led me to everything I’m explaining to you now.
Good relationships have good foundations. Good relational foundations are so simple it’s stupid. You have GOT TO be a friend first if you want anything that’s going to last. If you’re okay with someone leaving in the morning, that’s on you. I’m all set. I’m not sharing my body, if we can’t share life. You can’t know my body unless you know my mind. Sex does not keep the lights on, sex does not guarantee that person will be standing next to you in the hospital if you are sick, and if sex was no longer a physical option in your relationship WHAT WOULD YOU HAVE? 50% of marriages these days end in divorce. People do not bother taking the time to get to know somebody then when the storm comes (because it’s LIFE fam. Storms come.), they find out how that person really acts under pressure when money gets low or they get bored in the relationship. Lots of this can be avoided. I say this all the time, people don’t just one day go crazy. They were crazy all along, you ignored it. Let’s take a moment of personal responsibility. Think back to a relationship that ended in disaster. Those signs of disaster were present long before the actual disaster occurred. People settle for the love they THINK they deserve. Incase nobody has ever told you or shown you, healthy relationships do exist and you DESERVE to experience what love was designed to be… a blessing.
Love is not always a feeling. It’s a choice and a decision. Bad days happen fam (Domestic Violence is not a bad day, it’s something else that is very wrong). If you want to experience the fullness of love & life… learn to be single. Take time out and enjoy life. Figure out what it is you want and need in a partner. Let your needs outweigh your wants, because as we know everything we want isn’t always good for us. When you make a choice to love, make sure you have taken the time to get to know the person. Build a healthy foundation of friendship, trust, understanding. It is those things that will help you survive life and the curve balls we get thrown. If you don’t…you are making a conscious decision and be prepared to deal with the consequences.
I kid you not when I tell you after years of bad decisions, bad relationships I finally sat out a few rounds and was single for almost 2 years. Out of nowhere, just when I was truly content with being alone… I met the most amazing human being & friend. I’m sharing this because it’s the TRUTH and I want you to know that it’s possible. I am no better than you, God doesn’t like me better, and I’m still trying to figure out how or why I deserve this. I am blessed that the person in my life is my favorite person to hang out with, talk to, go through life with, laugh with, cry with, share my dreams with, and just about everything else. We have so many activities we enjoy doing together, we never get bored. A small benefit to a long distance relationship is that you HAVE to put the work in to make it work. Communication is a vital part of any relationship success and ours is outstanding. Hell, we even disagree good. When we disagree, it’s not a war… it’s a disagreement with two people that love each other and it ends with us still loving each other because when you learn to communicate like a grown up, you can discuss ANYTHING because you have already established love & respect for the person you’re talking to. I’m telling you this not because you should envy what I have (don’t do that…you have no idea what we went through personally to get here), I want you to have hope. I’ve been with this person about 4 months and we have not had sex and hands down this is the best relationship I’ve ever been in. This relationship has taught me the value of having a partner not just someone to smash. I know that if I was sick, he’d be there. Having that kind of peace of mind, is EXACTLY the kind of foundation you should be building if you really want to experience something that will last.