Archive for May, 2016
“A still tongue makes a wise head” refers to a person who only speak when it has been judged that it is appropriate to do so. They are not chatter boxes and are wise enough to not just say whatever comes to mind. It validates the theory that if one is cautious with their speech, and listens instead, he/she exercises control which in turn reflects their display of solid experience, keen knowledge, and good judgement.
A still tongue serves to protect and guard against unnecessary queries. Besides … Who asked for your opinion? Who asked you to stick your nose into their business? If they wanted your viewpoints, they would have asked.
You see here lies the problem. If people mind their own business, the world would be a better place. So here is another “Vernalized” recommendation.
Stay in your own lane and out of other folks’ business! Guard your tongue. Be selective about what words come out of your mouth. Besides, who has the time or energies to host someone else’s mess!
Proverbs 17:28 provides wise advice:
“Even fools are thought wise if they keep silent,
and discerning if they hold their tongues.”
It will behoove us to do just that!
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“Boo!” See them run! Why! They are afraid. They always think that someone is after them or out to get them. By definition, to be afraid of one’s own shadow is to be easily and always frightened; timid, or suspicious. Usually, the scary cat who fits those shoes is the person who is not brave or willing to take risks. I know that you can call a few by name; you probably see several everyday. The needle on their barometer of courage registers low or barely moves. They may talk a good game and some profess to be street bullies, but it is only a facade to cover up their timidity. They are yellow bellies for sure. Sneak up behind them and they will run faster than Usain Bolt. Eventually you will see it for yourself. Sooner or later, they may realize even if they never admit it, that the person that they are running from is themselves. There is no one chasing them or behind them. It is their disallowed refurbished shadow that they have secretly ignored. I cannot wait to look them in the eye when there is a real enemy behind them! I am sure that if that happens, the rapid fear and shock of it all will glue them in place where their real life shadow will superficially catch up with them!
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Back in the day, reading, writing, and arithmetic were the educational foundational bases. Then the formula became more complicated with the advent of technology. However, sometimes the more things change, the more they stay the same particularly when it comes to the basics. As processes change, so do we!
Now enters the dependable AAA. I refer not to the automobile rescue / fix it service. Several years ago with the release of my first book, “I’m Doing Me,” I invented a life changing model that I labeled as AAA. Popularly accepted, my AAA’s were acronyms for Admit, Address, and Act – the game changers for enhancing/ improving life experiences. Give me a pen & pad and I will give you a slogan!
Moving on … there is a Triple A that is the king of them all. Watch this. The AAA to which I now refer is Attitude, Aptitude, and Altitude. These 3 A’s are close in pronunciation and spelling, but man oh man, their meanings are vastly different. You can look up the definitions; that’s easy. However, allow me to “Vernalize” a significant life lesson. I want to leave you with this. Germane to most things is our attitude. Indeed it will in tandem with aptitude determine how high we ascend. No matter how smart you are, if your attitude stinks and is messed up, you stay on the ground. Alright now; listen up! The old women in Mississippi who got on my nerves when I was a teenager preached that to me and my girls in the late 1960’s. As I matured, I realized how right they were! I am just passing their words along. Interesting, it is a piece of advice that never grows old. Timeless, I’ll say! Now, put that in your pipe and smoke it!
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To turn the other cheek is to refrain from retaliating when one has been attacked or insulted. Turning the other cheek, also known as “offering one’s cheek, is a phrase in Christian doctrine that refers to responding to injury without revenge.”
The phrase originates from the Sermon on the Mount in the New Testament. In the Gospel of Matthew, an alternative for “an eye for an eye” is given by Jesus.
Now, an eye for an eye”, or the law of retaliation, is the principle that a “person who has injured another person is to be penalized to a similar degree, or in softer interpretations, the victim receives the estimated value of the injury in compensation.”
We often struggle with what our actions should be particularly when we are unfairly treated. Do we retaliate or do we resist? It’s hard to walk away! It may take every capillary in our body to not do unto them what they did unto us! How can we reasonably refrain? How can we not seek revenge? We must realize that anger is poisonous. Holding on to anger is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die.
It’s a struggle; a battle of the heart and mind. Who will win this internal raging battle remains to be seen. All I can say is that we let integrity and Godly wisdom be our compass. In the short term, we may regret our non-retaliatory stance, but a respectful, dignified response may assist in finding a solution that may put those conniving rascals behind us because we took the high road! Height and distance are very telling. When people are trying to bring you down it means that you are above them! Your actions may not earn you the Nobel Peace Prize, but they will make you doers of the Word! Hello!
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The captain goes down with the ship is an idiom and maritime tradition that a “sea captain holds ultimate responsibility for both his ship and everyone embarked on it, and that in an emergency, he will either save them or die trying.” In most instances , the captain of the ship forgoes his own rapid departure of a ship in distress, and concentrates instead on saving other people. It often results in the captain as the last person on board.
Hold that thought. Are you sailing on the Titanic; not the ship, but in the circumstances of life. Keep living, the ship may eventually anchor at your door.
It begs to ask the question, will you ride out the tides of life like the RMS Titanic captain, Edward J. Smith, or will you jump ship? “When the going gets tough, the tough gets going!” How tough will you be! You only have a couple of options. You can walk away or you can work to save your ship. Certainly saving your ship, yourself, others, and what you have worked for require more muscle power than the simple and easy desertion of walking away. The proof will be in your steps; moves that will be conspicuously seen by all. The courage to take the high road and battle your way to safe shores is the ultimate test. Saving yourself is a natural instinct. Looking out for others is the test. I hope to see you and your crew on dry land before your Titanic sinks! We’ll see what happens! We’ll see how courageous and selfless you are! All eyes are on you!
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Note: Due to technical errors, this May 16 post did not correctly appear.
vernalee | May 16, 2016 at 10:58 am | Tags: Stay or bail | Categories: General Stuff | URL: http://wp.me/p44iMw-1ZH
Comedian Flip Wilson in his female impersonator role as Geraldine had a joke that he poetically called, “loose lips sink ships!” Though we laughed, how true was Flip’s four word mantra.
What goes out your mouth may be heard differently once your words exit. Seriously, most people put a twist on other folks stories. They make the story their own. What that does to your uttered words, well that’s a different story. Your original words may have so many holes in it that the sentences cannot hold water. Nine times out of ten, it is a far stretch from the original statements. Ah ha! Nothing is ever confidential once it is repeated. Even simple stuff gets distorted.
Let me show you what I mean. During my birthday dinner, my guests and I played the game, Chinese whispers or as the kids call it, telephone. You know how it works.
One person whispers a message to another, which is passed through a line of people until the last player announces the message to the entire group. Errors typically accumulate in the retellings, so the statement announced by the last player usually differs significantly, and often amusingly, from the one uttered by the first.
The game goes on until the last person says whatever they heard aloud and the first person reveals the real message. Once you compare the messages, most likely you will have a great laugh at the dissimilarities. On March 15, when we played though we were tightly cozy being cuddled as close as pancakes and syrup, the final message was startlingly different. The flow started with me. Flabbergasted, I couldn’t believe what I heard as the final response. It wasn’t even remotely close. The first and last messages were as different as the Mississippi River is long! When everyone looked at the original written message, several folks jokingly fell under the table and asked, “Where did those words come from?” Really! We laughed to the top of our lungs! It was so much fun!
Stop! That was a game! Imagine what happens in real life situations particularly with the spread of gossip. At this point, it is no longer a game. The proverb, “Guard your tongue” is very telling. That small tongue of ours can cause monumental damage. Watch it! No wonder – some things are better left unsaid. A lie will travel around the world, before the truth even gets started. If and when that happens, it is not fun and games anymore. Who’s laughing now?
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In 2 Chronicles 20:15, we read:
“Listen, King Jehoshaphat and all who live in Judah and Jerusalem! This is what the Lord says to you: ‘Do not be afraid or discouraged because of this vast army. For the battle is not yours, but God’s.”
Allow me to share in words what songstress Yolanda Adams harmonically sings in praise in the lyrics of The Battle Is Not Yours.
“There is no pain Jesus can’t feel
No hurt He cannot heal
For all things work according to His perfect will
No matter what you’re going through
Remember God is using You
For the battle is not yours, it’s the Lord’s.”
Indulge me for a moment if you may. I know that there are days that you feel down and out; pains that feel to heavy to bear; moments that crucify your spirits, but let me lift you up today, because we have a deliverer. I heard about him years ago, but I didn’t know his true powers. As I grew in my faith, I felt the power of the Redeemer, the Prince of Peace, the man who was born to the Virgin Mary, who walked the streets of Nazareth and Galilee, who died so that you and me could have an everlasting life; the man that they called Jesus Christ.
Right now, I have to take you this Sunday Morning on an excursion down South. Travel with me to the banks of Lake Washington in my home town of Glen Allan, Mississippi, a quaint little city where the old folks wanted you to have a better life than them. Walk past the shotgun houses down the gravel paved road with the big ditches on Spencer Street. Sit on the first row in the pews of Strangers Home Missionary Baptist Church.
Listen to the raspy voice of my Mother’s now retired pastor Rev. Addison sing in his heyday James Cleveland style with pianist Mary Davis pumping those ebony and ivory keys.
Be filled with the spirit; be renewed in your faith; be cognizant of the fact that “can’t nobody do you like Jesus.” It’s prayer time saints whether you live in Cleveland, Tucson, Milwaukee, NYC, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Chicago, Charlotte, Jacksonville, Tampa; Greenville, Yazoo City, Jackson or Glen Allan, Mississippi …. or wherever you rest your head! It’s time to know in your heart and believe that no weapon formed against you will prosper; it’s time to know that God will place your enemies at your footstool, it’s time to throw your burdens upon the Lord & be obedient to his Word; it’s time to know that God will never leave you or forsake you; it’s time to know in your soul, feel in your flesh as your heart rapidly beats, and know in the inner corner of your mind – that the battle is not yours, it’s the Lord! Can I get a witness? Know that the tasks ahead of you, no matter how difficult are not as great as the power behind you! Know that God will fight your battles; you just need to sit still. Believe in him; have mountainous faith; let God show you the way. His mighty hands will protect you. Be blessed! Let the church say Amen!
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To cut to the chase is to focus on what is important; to abandon the preliminaries and deal with the major points, without delay. Embedding further upon the definition is to talk about or deal with the important parts of a subject and not waste time with things that are not relevant.
Why beat around the bush? Your time is too valuable.
I’m a story teller; the griot of my family. Yet, my adorable children frequently say, “Mommy get to the point.” Of course, they say it respectfully. They know better than to do otherwise! The point is to effectively utilize your time. The less time that you spend on trivia matters, the more you have to focus on the things that are important; the more time there is to maximize opportunities. “Cut to the chase,” is a short, sweet, and simple statement that can bring big returns!
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The cliche, “You get what you pay for” is simple. If you do not pay much money for something, it is probably of poor quality. If you pay well for something, it is more likely to be of good quality. Inexpensive goods or services are likely to be inferior. Lest not forget that you get whatever value you actually pay for. Now then, since the definition is clear, the question is easy?
Why do we want or expect more than what we are willing to pay? It’s a common fallacy. You can’t reasonably expect an equivalent or higher value for a lesser amount. You can’t buy champagne on a beer budget.
Your receipt of goods and services should commensurate with what you paid. If you get more, you lucked out! Plain and simple!
When something breaks down or fall apart, think of what you paid for it. Do the math. Stop expecting Rolls Royce quality driving a Ford Pinto!
Do they make those anymore?
Get the point!
If you think that it is expensive to hire a professional, wait until you hire an amateur. As billionaire businessman Warren Buffett says and I respectfully quote, “Price is what you pay for. Value is what you get.”
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Role reversals are interesting when they occur between parents and children. Very telling is when our little girls become women. In their journeys into womanhood, daughters may look back and better understand their Mothers’ plights. It is called relatedness. In late 2014, Beyonce recorded a song titled “Ring Off.” A devoted fan of the Beehive club, my baby girl who is now a woman brought the song to my attention. Gee, how times fly! Beyonce as most children, saw it all – her Mother’s happiness, sadness, joy, pain, public humiliation, betrayal, and tears. Afterwards, she saw her Mother’s strength as she rebounded from the devastation. I am sure that her admiration leaped miles and bounds as she witnessed her Mother rise from the ashes of hurt. If and when life knocks you down, rising up is harder than the descent. It is an arduous task that takes every ounce of your strength. Thus, Beyonce encouraged her Mother Tina to take off her wedding ring, (that round circle that should encapsulate love eternally), and love once again! Great advice, because Tina, aged 62, in recent times has found love in the arms of her now beau, husband Richard Lawson. Unfortunately, Beyonce did not have to utter those words to her Father Matthew. He took his ring off years ago with his adulterous affairs.
The lyrics tell the story:
“I understand your many sleepless nights / When you sit and you think about Father / Or how you tried to be the perfect wife. Until you had enough then you took that ring off … Dust yourself off and you love again / You found a new man now you shine and you’re fine / Like it’s my time, you took that ring off.”
Time brings about a lucid understanding to every aspect of our lives. We see clearer. Beyonce understands that and so does my daughter Phoebe. Thank you for sharing baby girl! Now, you have another task. You can even get your brother involved. Continue the story. Personalize it. The task is in the text. You know what to do!
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