Emotional Healing, Relationships

We Wear the Mask- Remixed

Hey Boo! Are you tired yet? Trust me, I’ve worn it too. Release the pain to God and be your authentic you. Pain is pint size and can fit into most of our purses and be carried around like a compact. We find ourselves taking it out at every stop, looking into the mirror and smearing the pain on our faces. Pain loves to be held and snuggled and it grows with each passing moment because the more you hold onto it, the more it attaches itself to your hopes, dreams, desires, and being.

If you are thinking about the number of masks that you have worn in your life, I’ve got your attention and that is a great thing because frankly, I am exhausted with wearing mine. When I realized that God wanted my heart not the pretense mock up of myself, it began to make perfect sense as to why we try to float through life as though everything is okay. Let me tell you something that I have just discovered in my thirty-four years on this earth…………..

*ish stinks!

It can be very subtle and alarming at first but gradually overtime, that thing that we try to disclose will be exposed for all the world to see and our vices that used to protect us and insulate us so strongly like an armored truck will no more and we are left at a crossroads to deal……..

the abortion that you never healed from………..

the graduation that you never reached…………

not making peace with the scale and falling into a box of twinkies night after night……….

kissing her while you are imagining yourself wanting to be kissed by him but he’s married……….

and a whole host of things that we as a population of people are dealing with. People magazine does not do the world justice at all in capturing the spirit of issues that are affecting the human race.  Amid the glamour and the cars, and the celebrities toting lattes down the street, are a population of people strung out on dope without hope and sitting on the kitchen floor wondering how to cut themselves in silence. When you don’t talk, you get talked to and for anyone that has dealt with the silence of yourself, you can relate to what I am saying.

The devil is not a red tailed imp that we see on television or in movies. He is real and has a purpose that is laid out in John 10:10 where it says, “Satan comes to kill, steal, and destroy, but God came to ensure that we have access to an abundant life.” So there……..we know that his purpose for us is not good because if left up to him we would suffocate in our mask and never take it off!

Something smells a little funky……….I know because I used to  smell funky too. Spraying perfume on my face and wearing Noxema to  hid the marks of my mask and ready to defend myself against anyone who would dare to recognize that I was wearing one. The good news is no one can make you come to the realization that you are not being yourself like you. You are with you consistently and are familiar with all of your ways just like God is, so sniff, sniff, and tell me what you smell?

One of my fav poets, Paul Laurence Dunbar drafted a poem that touched me in the day when the paper and pen were my coveted friend. His poem goes like this…..

WE wear the mask that grins and lies, It hides our cheeks and shades our eyes,—  This debt we pay to human guile; With torn and bleeding hearts we smile, and mouth with myriad subtleties.

Why should the world be over-wise, In counting all our tears and sighs?  Nay, let them only see us, while   We wear the mask.

We smile, but, O great Christ, our cries     To thee from tortured souls arise. We sing, but oh the clay is vile beneath our feet, and long the mile; but let the world dream otherwise, We wear the mask!

Take a minute and think about the enormity of this poem and the message that Paul was attempting to convey with it. If you have a journal with you now as you read my post, take a minute and write any ideas that are coming to mind as a result of wearing your mask. So now that you have done so, let’s explore how do we go about getting rid of the mask?

  1. Get Tired– When you come to the end of yourself and realize that God is and has always been your comforter, you will reach the point where you say enough is really enough and you go to that closet of masks and rip them out one by one. Realizing that you are not and were not called to be all things to all people and that you possess an authentic self is so liberating. All of the crowds that you frequent with dread, the relationships that you attempt to upkeep when you know the content is not quality and the environment is so toxic, there is nothing like freedom. In the words of my faithful Facebook friend, Ayene Joel, “Mask Alwayz falls Down One Day… Alwayz…”
  2. Realize that it’s ok to be you- When you were growing up, did you ever feel as though you had to contain who you really were in order to be accepted in a group, even if that group was your own home? I can remember wanting to watch country music and my siblings wanting to watch Rap City. I remember the times that I would go to school and my classmates would be talking about the latest fashion and trends yet I would be thinking about if my father remembered to take his medication and what he and my mother were going to want to do when I got home. All of us are at different junctions in our life and we are traveling the same road in life; yet many of us are taking various detours and routes that are not all in sync. It is easy to see someone along the road of life that may be more advanced than you or more prettier than you or whatever it may be. Seize the opportunity to be consistent in knowing that you are valuable and you have a purpose in this life. God made you and had greatness in mind when you were born. It does not matter if you felt as though you were an accident to your parents; God has a way of turning your thoughts to become agreeable to His will for your life. Realize and accept the purpose in your path.
  3. Surrender the pain–  Erykah Badu asked a very simple, yet poignant statement, “Bag lady, you gonna hurt your back, carrying all them bags like that. I guess no one never told you that all you must hold on to is you!” It is so easy to try to save someone that may or may not be saved. This is a common thread in the life of a caregiver. Caregivers hold a special place in my life because I was one to my parents and can identify with the feeling that you get when you want something for someone, at times, more than they want it for themselves. You wonder, well why can’t they just see what you see, but remember, that same train of thought that you hold for them, God holds for you! God wants you to trust him with the pain that you are feeling and find a place of peace to release the pain to him. God hearts you and wants you to be free.

In short, we all get tired, tired of working, tired of shopping, tired of writing, and tired of working. We all have reached the point of being tired of wearing the mask. This is your permission to take it off. What God has for you is far greater than you’ve ever imagined but you’ve gotta take the mask off and clean your face so that you can be annointed with His joy as you accept your call to His authentic grace.

He loves us, God that is…..,

Danita

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Culture & Communications

Ok…..So What Now? 4 Steps To Getting Your *ish Back

This past weekend was filled with a bunch of phone conversations with clients who all seemed to be working on the same important issue in their lives……..self-acceptance to love God more. Each conversation was a reminder of the past issues that each one had encountered which caused them to feel as though they were stuck in a twilight zone unable to get past the present and past failures that entangled them. The failures often came in the flavor of relationships, friendships, sour business deals, job promotions, and conception. No matter what the situation was the underpinning was a question that sounded and reverbed every chamber of their ear, ” Ok, so now that I failed, what now?

This question, in my eyes, is worth the $0.79 Therapy that I send to over 5,500 people everytime I publish this blog. Check it out here. Every situation that we face in life is an opportunity to grow. In my personal life, when I think of the countless times in thirty four years that I have undertaken new ventures, it makes me want to sit down for a tall iced coffee with milk. Moving to three new cities within a four year period, marrying a man from another country and learning his culture and language, having a baby, teaching in front of students who were my professional peers, or getting in front of the crowd at Apache Cafe and spitting my poetry to the masses. Whew, just the thought of them makes me want to grab a seat as I write this post. Where did I muster the courage to conquer the whole of these things?

 Why would I want to continue searching for things to conquer after doing so many things thus far? After all, the likelihood of failing is much greater because after all, years have passed and so has my resistance to handle failure—-why would anyone want to set themselves up for failure? This question continues to linger in the heads and mindsets of most. Playing it safe in life only guarantees that the path will continue to be straight but best believe that the weather forecast may throw in some rain and other turbulence from time to time but even through that the ability to remain focused is an essential trait to have for your journey.

 One of my favorite scriptures is Proverbs 28:1 declaring that, “the righteous are as bold as a lion.” When we make the decision to step out after a failed series of attempts that gives us the courage to press into our future and obtain closer results for what we are destined to become. When we allow fear to enter into our mindset and cloud our judgment, we become paralyzed, insecure, and unable to function. Fear does not show up to a pity party alone; it brings cousin Condemnation, cousin Discouragement, and cousin Guilt.

 Making the decision to try a new thing may be just what the doctor has ordered in your life. It may be that your husband left you and you find yourself stuck in your home after work afraid to go out of the house. Make a decision to accept the decision for him to leave (only you know what prompted the decision) and begin to pick up the residuals of your life while pressing into your future. You may find that rather than going home after work, taking a trip to the local coffee shop and reading your favorite book may be tremendous healing for your mind, body, and spirit. Coming to terms with the grief issue in your life is the first step in receiving your healing and ultimately fulfilling their destiny.

 1. Ask for Help– God is an awesome helper and he longs for the opportunity to provide guidance and direction to his children. After all, another one of my favorite scriptures says that before we were formed in our mother’s womb, he knew us and had an awesome planned arranged for us before the foundations of the world. How cool is that! Just talk to him, without the long drawn out words and actions this time. I find two words most helpful to get the assistance that I need. I simply say, “Daddy, help!”

2. Give It Your All– When we have encountered disappointments in the past, it is easy to enter a new venture with half the passion that we exerted in the first go round. Many of us find it easy to remain in the land of complacent, after all, with the way the world is going now, it would be easier to just sit back and enjoy that boring job we hold and fake happy the rest of our life without trying to find the footprint trail of our God-born destiny…Right? Well, no, why can’t we encounter both, the right to pursue anything and everything that we believe is leading us to the purpose that God has put inside of us. God wants us to be those bold lions that are not afraid to step out to seek the passion that has been placed within us so give it your all.

3. Do It Afraid-Baby steps eventually create giant steps and with the help of the Holy Spirit you will develop deeper understanding, wisdom, and custom revelation to handle the issues that you are confronted with. In the event that you encounter interference coming in the form of distractions, setbacks, sour deals, fractured relationships, stay focused and if you have to, as Joyce Meyer so boldly said, “Do it Afraid.” The art of being bold requires you to step outside of the confidence that we hold for ourselves and get equipped with the supernatural assistance of the Holy Spirit who knows everything. How can we possibly fail with help like that?

4. Report Identity Theft and Snatch Your *ish Back– A crime can leave you feeling violated and insecure of who holds you, your information, and the balance of the transactions you will have to come. There is nothing more personal than your *ish because that is the place where the intimate details of your life are stored. Your ‘ish is your past, present, and future function junction whether positive or negative that makes you the collective person that you are.

John 10:10 says that the thief comes to kill, steal, and destroy so we know that his visit is up to no good. The thief is an intrusion into everything that we will ever attempt to step out on, so rather than giving him the satisfaction, keep pressing into what you believe your purpose is. God knows the very hairs on your head so please know that he is concerned about everything that concerns you.

It is essential that you maintain your identity and not try to fall into the embrace of culture and society to measure the purpose that has been placed inside of you. Often times, persons that are aware of your dream may not be able to help you move forward because they are frozen with doubt and belief and unwilling to move forward into their own purpose.

That does not mean you have to stay there too so get to steppin into your purpose and go get your *ish back!

Culture & Communications

UNLESS: A Bottle of Prescription

Photo Credit: The Bridge

Unless………this word has been affiliated with so many of the things that I have untaken in life. Unless defined simply means “except on the condition that”. So, if A does B then C. Many of the transactions that we undertake in life are gauged by the cause and effect relationship of a powerful and robust unless.

Unless…….Mackie comes home he will be kicked out of the house.

Unless…….Daddy buys me a new pair of shoes, he does not really love me.

Unless……William gets off of drugs, he will be banned from our family.

Unless……I can wear Christian Louboutin, I will not fit into the elite group at work

Unless, unless, unless. The new culture of communications. How pressure filled is that?

Adults daze around in circles wondering what their life will be life if only they had made a different decision on life and because of it can never get a firm footing in the life they are currently living because the security of  a life already lived had never sunk in.

The love of God is a love that is not built upon an unless. His love is unconditional and without pretense. The love of God says, “Even though you were addicted to drugs, I can still love you extravagantly.” It is hard for many to comprehend being given such an awesome gift to be liberated when you were once walking around like a slave in the rat race of life and trying to remain on the plantation of society and culture.

The word unless has been responsible for so much grief in life after all, we are a series of the events that we untake and products of our environments right?  Unless has become a bottle of prescriptions for many where they believe that conditions must be thrown out in order to get someone to act the way that they should but who are we to always try to direct the traffic of the pain that we are not willing to treat. People don’t want your stuff, they want to know that you care. This may be the cause for the high rate of persons cutting themselves all over the globe…to the tune of 4 million people because they may have been met with an Unless which elevated their stress absent the unconditional love to work through the drama and get to the healing.

Unless, I keep writing, will you not believe that I love to?

Stay tuned….”Unless: A Bottle of Prescription”- Coming July 2012 on www.danitaogandaga.com and the Orphan No More Podcast!

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(c)2012 danitaogandaga.com