Tuesday, December 21, 2010

When You separate Yourself from Outside Voices You Appreciate!

As I shared, I have spent the last days of 2010 separated from outside influences and voices because I need to know I am hearing clearly from the Almighty God. I have spent this year being totally transparent. I want people to know the real me. I never want to find myself forgetting where I came from but most importantly I wanted to free myself from things that are unlike God that I have picked up along the way, on my journey.

I wanted to be free from a critical spirit most importantly. I never want anyone to feel like I did not take this journey too. Some may get there faster than others but we all doubt, we all fall short and we can all get to the destiny God had already ordained. It was in listening to the testimony of my supervisor called the fearless leader that I understood. He said "even though I am surrounded by greatness I sometimes doubt", he said "so I ask you all to pray for my unbelief." He is a leader of a huge Christian organization but he was so honest and real that his testimony was priceless.

I wanted to analyze things but recognize the good in everybody without letting the bad become a part of who I am. I wanted to always love people where they are. It was amazing, I was really upset with my husband but for a time and it took one little act of kindness for me to recall how wonderful he is. You see we are always hardest on those we love and who are closest to us. My daughter began to regurgitate something that did not agree with her. Well I do not have the stomach for it. So I said honey, Taylor is vomiting and I need to take care of her and make her tea etc but I can't stand the smell of vomit. He replied so humbly, "I got it baby, I will clean it up."

It is in those moments you realize what an honor it is to have a partner who can handle the things we often take for granted. So in closing this Christmas season remember to love more than anything and we will all get there!

Blessings .....In Christ!


Monday, December 20, 2010

God must be first and he must be the lead!

Over the years I have heard a great deal of advise. However, what I know is the best statement I ever heard was that a man who is not being led by God is being led by something. I can not afford to spend my life being led by anything other than God. So this year is the end of insanity. I must spend my life doing what I have always known to do which is Keep God First. You see no one and nothing can take the place of God being the head of my life. Many things have come in and distracted me but nothing and no one is greater than God. I have spent a few weeks simply cutting out all outside distractions and voices.

Therefore, know that this is the end of insanity and the beginning of my attention being centered on God. People have tried to take first place and I know that is not possible. I have tried to cater to everything and everyone because I truly want to see everyone win and be happy. However, I can not help anyone until I help myself.

I was also advised not long ago that I have to stop blaming myself and forgive myself before I can help anyone else. I simply was not trained for all that I have encountered and as women it is our nature to nurture and love. Mom spent her last days trying to remind me that I needed to remember who I am and why she made the sacrifices that she did. She made it clear that she sacrificed her life so that we would not have to.

Before we can love others we must first love ourselves. When a man or a woman loses sight of loving self they hinder the process of truly loving others. So as I heal, those of you who need to take this journey do so knowing that Gods man will understand your need to love yourself. A man of God will love you like Christ loved the church. He will lead you to places that only God can take him.

Recommended reading Stormie Omaritans: Power of a Praying Husband or Wife

In Christ!


Monday, December 13, 2010

In the Midst of reading How I Retired at 26! I am learning to love myself!

I have come to realize one thing. This season will be spent loving me. As the Lord often leads us into places and gives us books to read. I must say I have been blessed to read "How I Retired at 26!" by Asha Tyson .......what a victory!

This book has had me in tears while helping me deal with the emotional baggage I have held on to for far too long. May anyone out there who is hurting take time to read this awesome book that will help you heal, make you cry and help you know there is always someone out there hurting more than you. This book will teach you to stop letting life dictate who you are and are to be. Be blessed and read with me this month and remember to love yourself!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Dragon is slayed and you already Won!

I must say I had a Daniel prayer for 13 years and I was going through life just doing what I knew to do and in 2004 God answered my prayers. I was standing in church and the visiting preacher said "Women of God" and another woman began to move. He said "No, the woman of God...the one holding the baby." He said God has seen your tears and he said no more.

He called my husband and I up to the altar and he said the intimate details of our situation. He told my husband you will do what God has commanded. He then turned to me and said you will be blessed with all you desire. My desire was that my husband assume his position and take care of our family and it was not that he did not want to. He was just struggling with how to get there.

I was hurting because I did not want my family to hurt but most of all I did not want my daughter to see me in the condition of being the bread winner and running things I should not have to run. In our transition to Georgia our marriage was in danger and I had gone home to stay with mom until my husband was ready.When I left I was pregnant with our 4th child. Upon my return it was not immediate but I saw the change take place. I saw my man of God assume his position.

For the next year he did all God commanded and more, he bought my dream house 5 bedrooms as I requested, 2 story brick home (I was actually settling because the original dream was the mansion in the movie Body Guard :-) and he bought me the expedition then the excursion. He was doing the darn thing. He was making the decisions and taking care of our family, he was making up for all those years and I was elated. God had even birthed the dream of our own business and had blessed us with $10,000.00 to open the business on new ground in the end of 2004 and that no one was aware of.

A little history, he was touched by the man of God in 2001. My Pastor at my church who had really spoken to him like my father should have but he was absent so I was on my own. He assumed the role of my spiritual father and for that I will be eternally grateful. My Pastor now back in Georgia, his aunt, was in her prayer closet praying for us especially in 2002 and beyond and all was working together for our good. We were sowing into Oral Roberts Ministry and they were praying for us as well.

The only problem was I had made a mess of things by returning to a state I was warned not to go back to. I was warned not to go back to Egypt. I had heard the confirmation sermon that when we go some place we are not to go, the Devil will make it all look good and then he will attack. I was not quite sure it happened completely as such but he definitely launched and attacked. He launched an attack I was not quite ready for. I knew God was blessing so it did not make sense to me.

However, I share this testimony because there is someone going through and I now know who that is. Just know that this time is for preparation, be obedient and God will fully answer your prayer. He did it for me and I know he will do it again and again! He never changes. It may not be immediate but it will come. I only ask that you prepare and read Revelations 12:1-9 The dragon stood waiting for her to birth the baby so he could devour but know you already won! He is already slayed! Be obedient, be prepared for Ephesians 6 because with every victory we must be ready for battle....... be ready to stand!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Make sure you register to take the SAT and Act!


Scholarship Resources Available!

CMS Scholarship Guide: http://www.scholarshipplus.com/charmeck/

The College Foundation of North Carolina: http://www.cfnc.org

College Board: http://www.collegeboard.com

FastWeb: http://www.fastweb.com

Federal Student Aid: www.federalstudentaid.ed.gov

FindTuition: http://findtuition.com

Foundation for the Carolinas: www.fftc.org

Free Application for Federal Student Aid: http://www.fafsa.ed.gov

Questbridge: www.questbridge.org

Scholarships for Latino Students: www.latinocollegedollars.org

Student Financial Aid for North Carolinians:http://www.cfnc.org/static/pdf/paying/pubs/pdf/FANC.pdf

US Government Services and Information: http://www.students.gov

Check out these Summer Opportunities! Check new dates at the website!


NOTE: Many of these programs offer financial aid and scholarship opportunities. See websites for more details.

Appalachian State University—Martha Guy Summer Institute
Two week long program for students interested in learning about business and developing their professional / leadership skills—includes a trip to Washington, DC and New York City

American Community Schools British Studies Summer Program
Two-week cost-free study/travel program to England—two CMS students are selected through an essay contest

Anytown Summer Leadership Program
A five day residential leadership program that brings together a diverse group of high school students from the Charlotte region to discuss diversity issues, inclusion, discrimination, and leadership

Blyth Education
This organization is the largest provider of international community service and accredited summer programs in Canada. There are multiple programs offered in a variety of countries. www.blytheducation.com

Boston University Program in Mathematics for Young Scientists
Six week program for ambitious students to study math
Deadline to apply is May 2011.

Boston University High School Honors Program
For rising seniors—includes college level coursework or scientific research
Deadline to apply is May 2011. For financial aid consideration, students must apply by April 20th
Brown University Summer Leadership Institute
Courses designed for outstanding high school students who desire to challenge themselves intellectually,
socially, physically, and emotionally

Broyhill Leadership Conference
For rising 10th-12th graders—a five day/four night leadership and personal development conference held on
the campus of Queens University
Deadline to apply is June 2011.

Yesterday I realized My Son Has Become a Man! Don't forget us at EE Waddell HS!!

In attendance at the Save Our Black Boys (ELMP) meeting, my son on his own decided to respond to a forum that asked "What is it like to be a black male and walk in their shoes?" As I sat in the audience I realized it is his time. He started off explaining how he has grown. He said "yes there were teachers who tried to fail me." (He had a tough 9th grade experience, teachers playing rap music in Algebra class and who simply did not care) .

However, he said "I got up and started playing sports." He said "I play football, I wrestle, and now I am in a school where teachers take time to work with us and teach." He said "I know some of you may not know but we go up against schools such as Ardrey Kell High School and they are given everything. He said "they record our plays, they have (state of the art) .... equipment and are taught what and what not to do. They have a football field as big as our entire school and the school system took money and poured it into a new school William Amos Hough High and now they say there is no money and they want to take our little school.

He said "when we recently wrestled against Charlotte Catholic during our tournament the kid bit me and (the referee did not call him on it, so they were cheated again, because he did the same thing a year before and the ref pretended not to see then too)." He said "they keep taking from us." He took responsibility and said I missed my bus this morning (they left at 5 am) but I was going to go back to wrestle (Charlotte Catholic) and get him (meaning win). (However, God had another plan he had to speak.)

He was hurt but he was the voice the community needed to hear. Then there was an advocate from the Guardian ad litem program that stood up and said "yes they deserve an education just like everyone else in this country." So he was a voice that ignited a light in people yesterday, he let people know they are hurting. It is not easy but they are doing what they have to do to succeed no matter what they have been denied and even now as they try to close EE Waddell High School they will still soar like eagles and conquer! What I heard my son say was they keep taking from us and keep trying to be an obstacle but we will keep fighting back and we as a community must do the same in order to win!

Letter of Love.......... to my daughter!

Dear Taylor,

Congratulations is definitely in order. Although I had to work and I missed your first solo performance, I must say I am extremely proud of you. You have been a true beacon of light. In the midst of growing up with four brothers you often say Mom we need girl time and because I am so overwhelmed at times you seem to be put on hold.

However, you lovingly and patiently wait quietly and occupy your time by reading novels bigger than those I have even read (at leisure). I am so pleased with your desire to excel at everything you put your hand to and you have made life a little easier on your parents. Thanks for always making honor roll, getting 100% on most of your tests and for helping your brothers get ready in the morning when I am taxi Mom. Thanks for helping with the laundry, for baking your delicious cheese cakes and thanks for always filling in and still handling your business like only you can!

As I entered your school Friday morning after missing your concert I had a heavy heart but your Music teacher walked over to me with a smile and said she is a special one. It truly melted my heart. You are extremely special to me and I know you know that in your heart. I of course thought as Mom all of you are and I thanked her for the compliment.

Each and everyone of you has your own unique gift and it is always nice when someone takes a moment to recognize your talents, your hard work and your beauty which flows inside and out. Taylor thanks for being the shining star that lights my day and keeps the fire burning inside of me!



Thursday, December 2, 2010

War on Christmas...Satan you lose to Christ!

I was recently asked to write an article on the War on Christmas and I declined because I thought what a waste of people's time. However, I now realize how ridiculous Satan is. There is no true war because Satan will lose every time because he is a defeated foe. God will always WIN! It does not matter, nothing and no one will ever declare war on Christ and win. There is simply too much power in his name.

It just made me think back to the first time I realized how much Power was in the name of Jesus. I was walking my children to the school one day and a Rottweiler came charging toward us. I was a true baby in Christ at this time. However, I just stood still and told the children to be still and I said in the name of Jesus you go away and I just prayed. That dog literally tucked his tail and went the other way. I was standing there shaking in my shoes as I was holding my youngest son then a baby in my arms and telling my children and neice and nephew to be still. It was that day I understood the Power of His Name! You see in my flesh I was terrified but the power of the name of Jesus is what turned that situation around literally.

Even in the midst of every situation I call on his name and plead the blood knowing that God is and will always be in the midst of our struggles. He is truly a present help in the time of our need. So Satan you lose every time you get in the battle lines with Christ.

Yes Christians have chosen to boycott organizations that will not allow their employees to say Merry Christmas and we should exercise our right and buying power to lovingly say Merry Christmas! For he is truly the reason for this season! You simply can not take Christ out of Christmas!

© 2010 Denise Loundes-Russell

Do What Makes God Rejoice!

Man is a complicated creature. However, God really is not. It is men that make God complicated. I have thoroughly enjoyed just setting religious attitudes aside and just remembering why I fell in love with God in the first place. I had to really evaluate Gods character and say God is not this creation always criticizing and waiting to condemn. He is not saying people are bad soil and putting the very images he created down. He is a loving God that embraces and that has his arms stretched wide open. He is lovingly waiting on you his beloved. He is not preaching isolation and trying to silence you. Anything that uses these methods of control is not of love and is therefore not God.

Some times we have to realize there are other things motivating people. I had the pleasure of speaking with a friend who really put some things in perspective. She was advising me that my life had not been difficult by chance. She was summarizing that Satan is indeed used by people and realize that some people do not want to see you radiate in your true brilliance because God created you to be Powerful. Even more powerful than the powers that be currently are and that your light will shine so bright it will be amazing. She advised it is deeper than religion. She was saying some beings feel threatened about what God is going to do in your life.

You see some people are so caught up in self that they would rather see "The I told you so" manifest than too see God bask in the glory of your Victory! You see there is only God V Satan and in this battle you are on the winning team...... you and Jesus are truly the majority. Therefore, when you hear messages that make you feel like it must be some thing wrong with you, know that is not God, for he never wants you feeling condemnation. He does not honor sin but he always loves you the being he created.

God said in his word "you are the apple of his eye." He truly only wants what is best for you. Negative energy is never from God, He is a loving and awesome God. Follow your insides and know if it does not feel right it usually is not. Do what makes God rejoice, spend time with the almighty God and know that he truly loves you. Yes, the flawed and sometimes imperfect you! God was more in admiration of the people who knew they were flawed and unworthy. However, at the same time realize your oneness in Him is what makes you worthy!

Therefore, remember that according to:

2 Corinthians 9: “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

© 2010 Denise Loundes-Russell