Friday, September 28, 2012

Is Albany Really The Good Life City?

I woke up this morning with a heaviness of heart. I thought about my ladies from the center. I thought about the faceless people who I have yet to meet that are at home praying to God for that one door of opportunity to open for them. I thought about the many people who have been told "no"; not because they weren't qualified but because they didn't "classify" as being a part of the "in crowd". I thought about all the people who have yet to discover the world of hope, happiness and salvation. I thought about the people who have given up on God because of the poor christian examples placed before them.At first I got mad and then I thought "Thank you Lord because it could have been me and my family."

God has given Travis and I a wonderful ministry and loving family. He has planted seeds for our future business endeavors. We are excited about them all...but still...We know how it feels to fight to keep our vision and dreams alive. We were blessed to be raised by parents who taught us in firm love "You'd better not give up. Satan is going to throw obstacles, stones, bricks and whatever else at you. Don't even duck. You just stand and let God do the rest." We inherited a faith filled foundation from our parents. Because we know that not everyone was blessed to be raised by parents of faith like ours, we've made it our mission to spread hope to the hopeless.

It's been two years since we've moved to the Albany area. You can't help but notice those in authority who have the capability to empower families in our community but chose not to. You hear these people talk about the problems but not once suggest or even try to implement a solution. (If it ain't you say "Amen", if it is say "Oh me" Repent and Strive to Do Better)

There are a lot of organizations working tirelessly in the background to help reunite, educate and employ families. These are usually the ones who are working towards a mission not a motive. My husband met earlier this year with a "city leader" to discuss starting a program that will help young men get out of the system and back to work. This city official's response? "Man, if I do that, I'll lose $5000 a month."  Message sent and received.  It's more profitable to keep our young men in the system than out. The "city official" did apologize for blurting out his initial response and said that he would  meet with my husband and further discuss. That was nearly six months ago. No meeting followed.

Why am I writing about all of this you ask? Because I woke up mad but motivated. God gave me the gift of  pen and on many levels I haven't used to my fullest capabilities. I (Bridgett) don't have a pulpit (don't need one either) but I do have a pen and a keyboard.... I plan to use them both like never before. Timeout for sitting quietly. It's time to be a voice for people who have yet to discover their own. Travis and I have faced many obstacles since we started evangelizing through GO Ministries. We were told that our ministry had no meaning. But 18 productions and 2000 plus souls later, we beg to differ. We couldn't get the financial support needed to operate the FEP's job training program so now I'm operating it from home. Yet, God is still affording us the opportunity to help people with their career and education goals. We refuse to live in a shallow mindset of "Well my family is healthy and happy so why should I worry? "We choose to be an example of perseverance to anyone who has a call (whether in ministry or business). So please don't give up. Pray and get creative!

Albany, Georgia is the 4th poorest city in the nation and that's a shame. The Good Life City? I respectfully ask. For who? Maybe a one time...but you know what? We have just enough faith in God to believe that it can be again. To every organization who's SINCERELY working to help restore life in this city, we stand by you in prayer and helps. We plan on establishing our family roots here. We don't mind the hardwork this will entail. But first, the clich├ęs, greed and hidden agendas have got to go.

Our young people are growing up and moving away. Whenever we ask them why they choose to leave Albany, they all say the same thing. "There is no opportunity here. Besides, it's not about what you know. It's who you know."
This email is for the person who is struggling with whether or not they should call it quits. God said "DON'T". Never let the "smile in your face but knife in your back scaled eyed naysayers" cloud your dreams. God gave them to you for a reason and the last time I checked, he hasn't nor plans on retiring. Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompense of reward. For ye have need of patience, that after ye have done the will of God, ye might receive the promise." Hebrew 10:35-36

It's okay to get angry...the bible says to be ye angry but don't sin....jump in and Do Something..

Monday, September 24, 2012

Never Wear White After Labor Day...Cliche?

During a recent get-together, a young lady asked me if it was still wrong to wear white after Labor day. Since I was sporting a white top at the time, I responded "I don't have a clue." I've heard of this age old fashion rule but never really understood it so I decided to do some research and check it out. Although it's been around for over 50 years, I discovered there is no ONE reason as to why this rule was so greatly enforced.

Some believed that lighter colors where only meant for the summer months. Image consultant, Nancy Penn, suggests white reflects light and heat. She says "wearing white would make you cooler in winter, and thus should be avoided." Others believed it was all about social status and etiquette. Additionally, the affluent class used to wear white when they vacationed in warmer regions during the winter. The color white was considered to be the 'color of leisure'. Lastly, some believed clothing should match the colors of the season. After Labor Day, when leaves begin to change color, clothing styles should shift to earthy tones to match the browns, reds and oranges of autumn leaves. One exception to this longstanding tradition includes brides, who typically wear white wedding dresses regardless of the season.

I visited a few fashion websites to learn their views on the matter. Here is what they had to say:
  • Whites were shown with hair off the face, perhaps a pop of color at the mouth, and toned-down shoes, as if to proclaim that right now, white is the opposite of frivolous. Though the colorless color is definitely not just for the rich anymore, wearing all white still sends a message that's a bit standoffish.

  • When shopping for winter whites make sure to look for heftier pieces and steer clear of flimsy, sheer fabrics. That being said, clever styling can help you bring your summer whites into cooler months. Use layering and mixed textures to give your lighter pieces weight. And don’t be afraid to mix in shades of off-white and cream. Ann Deutsh.

  • When it comes to wearing white after Labor Day remember this, linen and light cottons are out and cashmere, heavy cotton, and corduroy are in.
For whatever the reason, I am tickled pink at the fact that this rule was created and followed by so many people who had no idea of its origin and meaning. On the other hand, it is important to remember fashion etiquette when applying for a job, attending a business meeting, conference or networking.

I'm not a Fashion expert but my advice would be to "Do You?" Only you can define you. Choose a fashion sense that reflects your taste and style then WORK IT!!!


Friday, September 14, 2012

Why I Love Him Like I Do

Was counting my blessings today and came across this video I posted on youtube three years ago. My testimony of how God has blessed my family time and time again. Click below to view.
Many Blessings!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

She Chose to Keep on Walking

She was taught about Christ the Savior, no sooner than she was born from the womb
Fervently taught by her parents  about Heaven's glory and Hell's gloom
She was taught to always stand up for what she knew was Godly right.
She was taught to never give up and continue to stay in the fight.
She took her first steps as a little girl ...and she started walking.

Growing up in life, some things made her happy, others made her sad
Somethings uplifted her spirit, somethings made her raging mad
But she kept her eyes on Jesus and she keep on walking.

In the school yard she was peculiar, talking about Jesus, wearing long dresses
Raising the eyebrows of fellow classmates who wondered about this Christ she professes
She was unusual but....she kept on walking.

At a young age she discovered her gift of singing in angelic praise
Promising to serve her Lord through out her breathing days
Shirley Ceaser, Clark Sisters, Canton Spirituals, Mighty Clouds of Joy too.
Played from the 1980s record player in our family's living room.
She sang eloquently and......she kept on walking.

As she blossomed into young womanhood, God anointed her personality
She had the gift of brightening a room and singing praise to God Almighty
She had a sense of humor that could make anyone's bad day good

She constantly gave to others always helping out whenever she could
She was determined and.....she kept on walking.

An assault at a young age would plague her with headaches throughout her days
Doctors said "Healing? There no way."
But she kept the faith and ...she kept on walking.

She feel in love and became a wife and then to two little ones she birthed life
They became the Beards. Hand in Hand, they kept on walking.

Some people tried to bring her down but she stood tall on solid ground.
She kept focused and...she kept on walking.

She always graced a welcoming smile
Reminding others of Christ worthwhile
Beaming with joy...she kept on walking.

The night before she died, she was filled with unspeakable joy
Posted on Facebook, Till I meet Jesus. Looking forward to the weekend with the hubby, little girl and baby boy
She was never stop walking.

In the morning light, God revealed to her Heaven's light. Imagine that. What a beautiful sight!
It was her time...toward the light...she chose to keep on walking.

Tell the truth. Shame the Devil.
God elevated her to another level.
She now sings for Heaven's record label and she sits at God's Holy table.

Aren't you glad?...She kept on walking. ©2011

                                                                                                                                    For You Tot


Saturday, September 1, 2012

My Sister's 2nd Birthday in Heaven

Her Angels
This Labor Day weekend also marks what would have been my sister's 32nd birthday here on earth. Instead, Latoshia celebrates her 2nd birthday in Heaven. Tomorrow morning my family and I will release birthday balloons into the heavens in honor of her memory. We can't see her children this weekend so it's a little difficult but still I am greatful to God for those two precious angels.

She lives on through their smiles and comical antics.

Top Left  Right: Bridgett and Angela
Bottom Left to Right: Tommy Jr and Latoshia
I pray I don't offend anyone when I say this but I find myself a fan of certain scenes from the TV reality show "The Braxtons." I usually don't promote reality TV because of it's negative impact on the its' viewers but I can't help but giggle from some (notice I said SOME) of their sisterly quarrels. It reminds me so much of my own sisters. To some degree The Braxtons are like an "unsaved" version of who we are as sisters. Tamar reminds me of Toshia because she is the comical loud one. Towanda is a mix of me and Angela because of her militant demeanor. Even though she is my least favorite of the sisters, Toni and I are alike because she's the oldest and because of her tone of voice. My sisters used to tell me when we would bicker "We hate that calm counselor's voice of yours!" (I knew they hated it that's why I did

I must admit, I'm still not happy with having to live life without Toshia. But still I've learned a lot. I'm learning what it truly means to love unconditionally. I'm learning to make the most of each moment. I'm learning how to help others in spite of my own pain. I'm learning what it truly means to forgive. I'm learning that what I thought was the breaking of me is actually the making of me.

This weekend I encourage you to enjoy your families. Make the most of each moment and if it's possible make amends with those who you haven't spoken to in a while. Even if your love is initially rejected, leave it on the table for them to accept when they are ready and walk away knowing that you did what was right in the eyes of God.

Labor Day is about celebrating the economic and social contributions of American workers. Let's also celebrate our family members who gave of themselves so that we could be where we are today.Make your Labor Day your Labor to Love. Drive Safe, Eat Hearty, Laugh Hard, Take Pictures, Be Silly and Make Memories.
Left to Right: Toshia and Bridgett

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