I recently took a chance on Rihanna's newest album, Rated R. I have never been a Rihanna fan....for lots of reasons. But I believe in giving credit where credit is due. That been said, I have to say that this is one of the most diverse yet cohesive albums I have heard, ever. She has something on this album for everyone. She has a nice mix of rap, r&b, rock, and pop on it. That, combined with some of the realest talk I've heard on an album in a long time makes this album a must have for music lovers. I must say....Rihanna has matured well...the content of this album totally reflects that. She just earned herself a new fan right here. "Rated R" is a winner. Don't sleep on it.
If you've ever played any kind of sport, for any length of time, then you probably understand that the relationship between teammates can be very complicated but it can also be very rewarding....when you understand how to be a good teammate. Personally, I see the body of believers as a team. I know the Bible refers to us as brothers and sisters. I'm not trying to take anything away from that. We are the sons and daughters of one God, therefore, we ARE brothers and sisters. I do, however, think that as believers, we could all benefit from thinking about our relationships with other believers in terms of a team. This concept came to me as I meditated this morning on the following.
Romans 15:1-7 (NIV)
1We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. 2Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. 3For even Christ did not please himself but, as it is written: "The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me." 4For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.
5May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, 6so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
7Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.
We should all be working together for the common goal of the glorification of God. I believe it fitting, therefore, to think of ourselves as a team. Maybe, then, we should pay more attention and put more effort into being good teammates. Just like any other relationship, there are key factors that go into having a good relationship with your teammates.
1. Good teammates respect what each person on the team brings to the game and understands that they, alone, do not make the entire team. (1 Corinthians 12:14-26) You may be an excellent shooter, but it means nothing if you never get the ball. You need someone to pass you the ball so that you can make the shot....this is, appropriately, called an ASSIST. The passer of the ball, is just as important as the shooter. Let's just say, for the sake of argument, you are the ONLY person on the ENTIRE team that can make a basket. It means NOTHING if no one ever ASSISTS you. You STILL need the rest of the team. It's the same way in the body of believers. Maybe you're the best leader. It means nothing if no one will follow. Maybe you're the best singer, how great can you be if no one will ever back you up or play for you. When you respect everyone for what they are good at. People will go out of their way to make sure you get respected for what you're good at.
2. A good teammate never discourages another team member. (Romans 15:1) We all have off days. We all have days where we don't perform as well as we would like to but understand that everyone is on the team for a reason. As stated above, everyone brings something to the game. So, just because someone on the team is not performing at their best, when YOU think they should doesn't give you the right to totally dismiss their overall contribution to the team. Remember, Kobe's highest scoring game was against the Toronto Raptors with 81 points. Dually, his lowest scoring game was was prior to that, against the same team with 11 points. I'm just saying, off days happen. As people of God, we should never be in the business of tearing down the spirit of someone who is having one of those days, weeks, or maybe even months in some cases. You never know what someone is going through or how weak they may already be emotionally. All it takes is the right person to say the wrong thing, and someone's spirit could be totally destroyed. Think about it, how many members have we already lost because someone's feelings got hurt. Be careful what you say to your teammate. Support each other. Build confidence, not insecurity.
3.A good team puts the well-being of the team above their own personal desires. (Romans 12:3) It sounds cliche, but their really is no "I" in team. We do not win or lose individually, we win or lose as a TEAM. Don't be so caught up in wanting to score the winning basket that you totally overlook a teammate that is wide open and in a better position to make the shot. No one likes a selfish player. It's not all about YOU. Not in sport and not in your spiritual walk either. Do what is best for the team. Keep the goal of the team in mind, not your own personal desire to be the one to see it through.
I'm going to leave you with this....
1 Corinthians 12:25-26 (NIV)
25so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. 26If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.
You should have no desire to see your teammate fail. You should not be happy to see your teammate having an off day. It doesn't benefit you to steal the ball from them or break their confidence so that they don't feel comfortable handling it anymore. Remember, if they lose...SO DO YOU!!!!
Ever get so tired of someone's crap that you wanna pull one of these....
I came so close to this the other day that it is not even funny. I was ready to slap FIRE from this clown....seriously. This person was really trying to take me there!!! If it had not been for the hand of God on me, I would have definitely put my hands on them. But I held it together. I decided tho to create my own personal "Rules of Engagement"....for those of us that need a little reminder every now and then.
Rule #1: Keep it Classy.....
Never let ANYONE make you lose your cool at an inappropriate time or in an inappropriate place. Be aware of your surroundings and always act or react within the appropriate lines of those surroundings. Understand that the only reason some people say what they say or do what they do is to get a negative reaction out of you. If you give it to them...YOU HAVE FAILED and failure is not an option.
I don't care how low they hit or how loud they talk. You MUST keep your cool. The easiest thing in the world is to flip out....but DON'T! Remember: People are always watching and your character is on the line here. Never say or do anything that would call your character into question. I don't care how loud they get, if you are in a public place...do NOT...I repeat...do NOT engage in a ranting war with them. Keep your composure and make THEM look like the idiots they are.
If you must say SOMETHING...and trust me, I know that sometimes you MUST.... Be witty...not loud and use fact, not opinion. That way, no one can say that what you said wasn't true and your character stays in tact.
Don't you just LOVE it when stupid people try to act like they're smart? LoL...it doesn't matter how hard they try, they always get caught up...and it's usually their mouths that give them away.
Case and point...
I'm sitting in one of my classes today and we're talking about Asian culture. I don't remember exactly what the question was, but we were right in the middle of some good ol' class participation. When one of my classmates raised her hand...
and said the following: "One of my really good friends is not Asian but he's Vietnamese..."
LoL...I don't know what she said after that and it doesn't even matter because her whole statement was overshadowed by that ignorance she prefaced it with. And the funny part is that I heard someone try to whisper to someone else..."Isn't that still Asian?" LMAO
I wanted to smack her in the face with a map of Asia....so she could see that Vietnam IS in Asia. Therefore her friend, who is Vietnamese, is IN FACT considered Asian. Thereby making her whole statement an...
When you ask God for something...I don't care what it is, you have to be patient. I know it gets rough when you have been asking for something and, what we consider, an extended amount of time has gone by and God has not moved...or we feel like we haven't heard from him. We start to wonder if he really cares or if he's listening at all. Understand that God hears every prayer and he sees every tear. He's not ignoring you. God is not like man...he's not giving you the silent treatment because of that sin you committed last week. And although it may seem like God has forgotten you or even that he's working against you, at times....there is a plan.
"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, said the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end." Jeremiah 29:11
That means that not only is God thinking/planning only good things for you and about you, but there is an EXPECTED end. Meaning, God already knows how everything is going to play out and if his plans are good....then the expected end MUST be GOOD!! Don't let anybody tell you that God is punishing you for a sin you've already been forgiven for. The devil is a LIAR!! I don't care what you've done...once you have repented....YOU ARE FORGIVEN. There's no waiting period to get back in the will of God. Remember, God is not like man.
The Bible says that God will withhold no GOOD thing from us...
"For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly." Psalm 84:11
What makes something we ask for "good"?....the alignment of it with the word of God. In order to know what lines up, you have to know the word of God. Praying for things like financial security, a husband/wife that is saved, or the deliverance of a loved one line up with the word of God. These are GOOD things. So as long as you are walking uprightly, meaning, you are living according to the word and will of God....it WILL be given unto you. All you have to do is patiently WAIT.
Understand though, that HOW you wait is important. Some of us wait on God like this...
But the Bible says, "Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen your heart: wait, I say, on the LORD." Psalm 27:14
God doesn't want us standing in one spot, pointing to our watches and looking up at him like...."ummm...Lord...are you gonna do it or not?" First of all, you need to believe that he is going to perform it. And second of all, you need to get busy doing the work of the Lord. Sometimes, we're waiting on God to move and he's waiting on us to move. Get busy in ministry, get busy making sure you're ready for the blessing, and get busy praising him like it's already done....because it IS!
If you do these things and wait the way the Bible tells us to wait....you will find renewed strength...
"They that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint." Isaiah 40:31
All that means is that if you wait like he tells you to wait...he'll make sure you're comfortable while you wait. Be encouraged...God has not forgotten for you. Stop crying, calm down, and WAIT!
To what lengths would you go to make it work with the one you love? Would you forgive the unforgivable?...Would u tolerate the intolerable?....Would stay when everything you were ever taught says "walk away"? The older I get, the more I realize that if you love someone and really want to be with them, you're going to have to put in some work at some point. You can't just walk away when it gets a little rough...and even if you do, it won't matter because you're going to have to put work into the next one too. See, some people say that there's no such thing as a perfect relationship. I disagree. I think that a relationship can be perfect for the two people that are in it if they are willing to put the time and effort into making it work for both of them. The question is...how far are you willing to go in order to make that happen? I've heard people say that the easiest thing in the world to do is to walk away. Again, I disagree. I think walking away from the person you love is one of the hardest things in the world to do. But I think we do it out of fear. We know that walking away will hurt, but were afraid that staying around and getting hurt will hurt worse. It's a self-defense mechanism...disengagment...the idea being that if I leave you alone, then you can't hurt me. It's fear and fear does not come from God. ("God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."~2 Timothy 1:7) It's paralyzing and if you allow it to govern your life it will definitely stop you from achieving your goals and definitely stop you from loving the way you need to love in order to have the relationship you want to have I'm learning to not be governed by fear. I'm learning that the key to protecting yourself is to not trust my dude, but to trust that God will protect my heart if I love the way he loves...unrestricted, unconditional, and unrelenting.
"What is the Ball State Shuffle", u ask? It's the one thing they don't tell you about in orientation. It's something that every student has had to do periodically during their attendance at BSU. It's when you find yourself shuffling from building to building to fix, what seems like, a simple problem. It's the perfect recipe for frustration.
Let me tell you a story....
Earlier this week, my homeboy and I were meeting up on campus at 7:30am, before my 1st class, to work out. Sounds like a good idea, right? WRONG!!!! The thing is, construction is being done on the building. So, the work out room had been moved. Do you think there was a sign to tell us where it had been moved to? Absolutely not. So after we walked the building for 15 minutes, we ran into an old professor of mine who looked liked she had just got done working out. So we asked her where the room was. She proceeded to say "down the stairs and to the right". Well, apparently, she meant "down the stairs and to the left".....yeah....took us another 10 minutes to figure that out.
We finally get into the workout room and give the attendant our ID's to swipe. Homeboy's went through just fine. Mine, on the other hand, got declined. So the attendant chic sent me to the office of the facility manager. I walked all the way over there to find, of course, the door is locked. She's NOWHERE to be found. So, I walked BACK to the attendant chic, who then, decided to page her. So, I'm sitting there, waiting to find out what the problem is. Ten minutes later, she finally decided to show up and said that since I've been away from BSU for over a year. I needed to have my old ID recoded upon re-enrollment so that it would work in the facility...
LoL...That was the EXACT look on my face, because I'm thinking....Why didn't anyone tell me that the day they got me re-enrolled?! I could have handled that WEEKS ago!!! She then told me that I could get it recoded in the building right across the street. So I get over to LaFollet and, of course, they have NO IDEA what I'm talking about and said that I needed to go over to the registrar's office...which is clear across campus...
So, I decide to call first, just to make sure I wouldn't be wasting a trip. The chic at the registrar's office answers the phone and the conversation goes a little something like this.... Me:I just got re-enrolled this semester. I'm having some problems using my ID in the workout facility and I was told that my ID needed to be recoded. Is this where I come to have that taken care of Her: Recoded? Who told you that? I don't understand. It should work if you're re-enrolled. Are you registered for classes? Me: It's not working. Yes, I'm registered for classes. The facility manager said it needs to be recoded. Her: No, that's not right. It should be working. Me: Well, it's NOT... Her: It should be. Me: Well...it's NOT. So what do I need to do? Her: Bring it by the office so we can take a look at it.
She wasted 5 minutes of my life telling me it should be working while I'm telling her it's not....JUST to end up telling me to walk all the way over there anyway. I got over there and guess what she had to do...RECODE IT! UGH
Needless to say, I had to wait until AFTER class to workout. I didn't have time to move my car out of 2hr parking, so you know what was on my car when I finally got back to it after class....
AIN'T THAT ABOUT A..................
JESUS, TAKE THE WHEEL CUZ I'M GOING OFF THE ROAD!!!!!!!! LoL...too done.
Essentially Mikki is about the real life experiences of a young woman trying to put the word of God 1st. If you are reading E.M., it's because you were invited to be a reader of E.M. It is my hope that in reading, you will be encouraged and inspired or at the very least....have a good time. The thoughts, experiences, and opinions expressed here are those of the author. This is the world through my eyes and I'm so glad that you have taken the time to check it out. However, if you are offended by realness and truth, have no since of humor, dispise randomness, or all of the above.....this is not the place for you. Enjoy!
I am, 1st of all, a servant of God... Second of all, I'm Mikki. It takes a long time to know what all that entails, but this blog is about the closest you'll get. It's here that I express my innermost thoughts and feelings. It's here that you will find what is, essentially, Mikki.