Silent Courage

SILENT COURAGE It has been awhile since I posted anything. Two days after my last post, a family member died unexpectedly.

In those moments immediately following her death, one thing I forgot is that “hurting people, hurt people.” Therefore, instead of having a disciplined response to the anger and drama directed at me by someone who was clearly hurting, I reacted.

Not only did I react, I exploded.

The human side of me felt like they deserved it, but the spiritual side of me knew that was not the way to handle the situation.

I have had some time to reflect over what happened, and I cannot help but wonder, why. Why do I get so defensive and feel the need to defend, explain and prove that I am right and the other person is wrong?

If I know that I AM NOT who they said I am, I AM NOT what they said I am, and I DID NOT do what they said I did, then why does their opinion matter that much? Why?

Will their opinion of me change my life? Does their opinion validate who I am and what I do? The answer is simple and it is NO! I have nothing to prove. Neither do you!

The reality of it is that no matter what you say or do, some people will form an opinion of you, and there is nothing you can do to change it. Sometimes in trying, you are fighting a losing battle that will only leave you frustrated. Sometimes it is just better to stay SILENT.

In this phase of my life, I am seeking to walk in SILENT COURAGE.

Being someone who has always fought back, I need COURAGE to stand still (be in a position of rest), COURAGE to be SILENT and COURAGE to trust (to rely upon or place confidence in) God to see me through and vindicate me.

I need COURAGE to know that being SILENT does not make me weak, it does not mean that I am the one wrong and it does not mean the negativity directed at me is true.

“COURAGE is what it takes to stand up and speak; COURAGE is also what it takes to sit down and listen.” (Winston Churchill).

I am praying to God for the wisdom to know the difference between when I need COURAGE to speak up and when I need courage to stay SILENT and let Him fight for me.

In the end, remember this:

  • “When I accept myself, I am freed from the burden of needing you to accept me.” Dr. Steve Maraboli
  • “Your value is measured by what God says about you, not what someone else thinks about you.”
  • “Sometimes not saying anything is the best answer.  You see, silence can never be misquoted.”
  • “In the multitude of words, sin is not lacking. But he who restrains his lips is wise.” Proverbs 10:19 NKJV

If you liked this post you may also like, Live With Purpose On Purpose and When Life Happens, How Will You Respond?

~Keishawna Jolivette

I’m finding the ‘jolly” in ever “moment” life brings my way! You should too!

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What Are You Waiting For: The Time Is Now

What Are You Waiting For_Time Is NowWe can always find a reason why not to embark upon something that has been tugging at us.

We say we are waiting for the “perfect” moment or “perfect” timing to make the move.

But, what is the “perfect” moment? When is the “perfect” time?

Are you waiting for the “perfect” day, the “perfect” spouse, the “perfect” job, the “perfect” weight, or the “perfect” amount of money in your bank account?

What if you never get married, never get the promotion, never lose those extra pounds, never win the lottery, never get the bigger house, or never get whatever it is you are waiting to happen first?

Sometimes the “perfect” moment we are waiting for is already here, but we can’t see it because fear, doubt, and insecurities are blinding our view.

We can let life pass us by waiting for the “perfect” moment, or we can seize the moment we have now and make it “perfect.”

You will never know if that business will work, if your book will sell, if you are smart enough to earn that degree, if you will get the job, or if true love will find you if don’t walk away from a relationship you know is not good for you. You will never know if you don’t try.

I guarantee you if you don’t try, you won’t see that thing you hoped and dreamed for manifest. I would rather try and fail, than fail to try. Believe me, I am talking to myself right now as much as I may be talking to some of you.

I know of a woman who waited for the perfect time to retire. She could have retired earlier, but the time wasn’t right. When she finally did, she developed a health challenge that is preventing her from enjoying her retirement. I am sure sometimes she wishes she retired before now.

I know of woman who has been waiting for years for the “perfect” moment to use some special gold-plated utensils she bought. It’s been decades and the “perfect” moment hasn’t come. I wonder if she will live to see this “perfect” moment.

I know of a woman who has started writing a book, only to put it down, only to pick it up again, only to put it down again, because she is waiting. Sadly, she doesn’t even know what she is waiting on anymore.

I know of a woman who has been waiting for decades on this “perfect” man to come and rescue her. I am sure along the way, one came but she couldn’t see it. So, she is still waiting. In the meantime, she is missing out on the life she does have, for waiting on the one she doesn’t.

God made you on purpose for a purpose. Don’t allow fear, doubt, insecurities or the opinions of others to keep you from embarking up the very thing you dream about, pray for, hope for and long for.

“Sometimes the smallest step in the right direction ends up being the biggest step of your life. Tip toe if you must. But take the step!”

I want to close with words from the song “Walk on Water” by Britt Nicole:

If you take that first step into the unknown He won’t let you go

So what are you waiting for? What do you have to lose? Your insecurities, they try to hold to you

But you know you’re made for more, so don’t be afraid to move

Your faith is all it takes, and you can walk on the water, too

Step out, even when it’s storming Step out, even when you’re broken

Step out, even when your heart is telling you to give up

Step out, when your hope is stolen Step out, when you can’t see where you’re going

You don’t have to be afraid

So what are you waiting, what are you waiting for?

If you are ready to take that step, or when you take that step, I would love to hear about it. Come back and share your “moment” with me.

Don’t wait anymore. The time is now!

If you liked the post, you may also like  “When Life Happens, How Will You Respond“, “Live With Purpose On Purpose“, “Do It Afraid” and  “Learning To Let Go

~Keishawna Jolivette

I’m finding the ‘jolly” in ever “moment” life brings my way! You should too!

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Hope Deferred…

Hope DefferedHope is defined as, “the feeling that what is wanted can be had or that events will turn out for the best”. We have all hoped for something. There are times that the thing in which we hoped for manifests in our lives. Then sometimes our hopes turn into disappointments.

What do you do when you have reached a crossroad and it does not seem that your desire will happen? Do you keep hoping or walk away? I want to share a true story with you that I pray gives you hope when faced with a fork in the road.

Kiesha and her husband were high school sweethearts. In their early twenties, they decided they wanted to start their family. A year went by and still no children, however they were young so they knew it would happen soon.

With each late menstrual cycle, her excitement and anticipation of a baby would heighten, only to have her hope temporarily stolen by another negative pregnancy test.

After eight years of irregular cycles, heavy bleeding, symptoms of PCOS, etc, the doctors told her to have a hysterectomy. They did not see a child in her future and a hysterectomy would at least give her some relief from the painful cycles and issues she was having.

Kiesha was at a crossroad. Would she believe what the doctors said, or keep hoping that what God said to her would manifest? She decided not to take the doctor’s advice and to keep believing that God’s promise to her would happen.

Then came year 9, year 10, year 11, year 12, and still there was no baby. She watched friend after friend get pregnant, and still no baby.

I do not know if she ever admitted it aloud, but I am sure at some point she started to doubt it would really happen.

One day, while at work, she started to feel ill. She went to the ER, thinking she was having some sort of heart problems. They ran several tests, but did not find anything wrong. The nurse, not suspecting anything, asked her to provide a urine sample before she left.

To all of their surprise, Kiesha was pregnant! After thirteen years of hoping, her desire had finally come. I am happy to report that today Kiesha is caring for her now 2-month-old beautiful son.

“Hope deferred makes the heart sick; but when dreams [the desire] come true at last, there is life and joy.” Pro 13:12

When hope is deferred (postponed, delayed, or withheld for a period of time), it can be painful and hard to endure, especially when you see others so easily have what seems to keep slipping through your fingertips. 

I can’t help but wonder how many of us give up right before our breakthrough is about to come.  I wonder how many of us give up because it did not manifest in the timeframe we thought.  Kiesha’s story touches me because I cannot help but think what if she had that hysterectomy. She would have never seen her desire come to life!

I know every story will not end as Kiesha’s did. We all have our own unique journey and they do not all take the same path or end the same way.  Sometimes a delay does not mean “no”, sometimes it simply means “not now”, and sometimes it means God has “something else” planned for us. 

I don’t how your story will end, but I just want to encourage someone out there reading this that even when everyone around you has given up, if there is strength in you to still believe what God has told you, then simply BELIEVE! HOPE!

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

~Keishawna Jolivette
I am a Jolly Mom and these are my Jolly Moments!

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Live With Purpose On Purpose!

Live With Purpose on PurposeLast night I could not sleep so I decided to browse around on a social media site.  I came across a page dedicated to getting justice for a 22 year-old female who was recently shot and killed by police officers.

My heart goes out to her three-year-old son who woke up today, as he will everyday for the rest of his life, without his mother.

There are conflicting stories as to what actually happened.  I am not writing to debate what did or did not happen.

I just want to remind everyone today how precious this life is that we have been blessed with. We should not take it for granted.

  • I encourage you to hug tight, kiss and love your loved ones everyday because we do not know when it will be their last.
  • I encourage you to not “sweat the small stuff” that happens in life.  Remember, “Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you respond to it.”
  • I encourage to live without regrets and fear.  If God put something on your heart to do, dare to do it.  For one day, you may wish you had and it may be too late.
  • I encourage you to bless someone with kindness and love today.  It can be something as simple as a smile or a kind word.  You never know whose life your encouragement will change.
  • I encourage you to stop today and “smell the roses” and recognize the beauty in this life you have been blessed with.  Count your blessings one by one.
  • I encourage you to laugh and laugh some more.  It is therapeutic!  In addition, it is hard to be angry or upset when you are laughing.
  • I encourage you to make peace with someone you have been at odds with.  Ask yourself if the reason you are not talking is worth not having that special someone in your life.
  • I encourage you to “taste your words before you spit them out.”  Once you release them, you cannot take them back.
  • I encourage to find the “jolly” in every “moment” life brings your way.  I know sometimes that is hard to do, but if we magnify, or focus on the good in our life, the bad will not seem as important.  We will be a lot happier and less bitter for it.
  • In the rare case that someone who believes in violence as the solution to their problem is reading this blog, I encourage you to think before you pull the trigger.  That’s someone’s mother, father, brother, sister, son, daughter, husband, wife, or friend.  Whatever it is, taking a life is not worth it!
  • Finally, I encourage you to “live a life that measures up to the standard God set when he called you.”(Ephesians 4:1 Good News Translation)

Every day, LIVE with PURPOSE and DO IT on PURPOSE!

If you liked this post, you may also like “Giving Thanks: A Lifestyle Not a Holiday“, “Count Your Blessings, Not Your Problems“, and “When Life Happens, How Will You Respond

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The Healing Power of Kindness

 The Healing Power of Kindness 2“The one who blesses others is abundantly blessed;  those who help others are helped.” Proverbs 11:25

The restaurant was crowded, but it was an all-you-can-eat buffet, so I should have expected it.

The table in front of me had four children sitting alone.  Their mother sat at the table next to them.  Consumed with the man sitting next to her, she paid no attention to what her children were doing.

I watched as these children brought plates of rolls, bowls of ice cream and plates of dessert to the table.  Without touching any of it, they left for more.

After several minutes, the ice cream began to melt and make a mess all over the table.  The waitress assumed it was an abandoned table and cleaned it up.  The mother, still consumed with the man next to her, never noticed a thing.

After several more minutes, the children returned with more plates of food, dessert, etc and began to complain to their mom that all the ice cream was gone.  The mother called the waitress to her table, proceeded to curse her out for throwing away her children’s food, and then demanded that they now eat for free.

The waitress maintained her composure, apologized and attempted to resolve the issue before the mother made an even bigger scene.

The waitress came over to see if we needed anything.  I replied no, but proceeded to thank her for serving with a smile on her face and with such a positive attitude in the midst of a chaotic and negative situation.

Tears formed in her eyes.  I then asked how she was doing and how her day was going.

She broke down and said she only had a few hours of sleep.  She got off her first job at 5am and had to be at this job at 2pm.  Her two-year old was not sleepy so she was unable to get much of a nap in between jobs.

She thanked me for asking and for complementing her.  She said that although they work hard, all she and the staff get are complaints from the management team.  She said it felt good to know someone recognized her hard work.

This world is full of hurting people.  You would be surprised how a simple hello, how are you, or a smile can brighten someone’s day.  These random acts of kindness cost nothing, yet few of us do it.

We all have issues we are dealing with and sometimes it is hard to realize that someone may have it worse than we do.  Sometimes we magnify, or make so big, the negative in our lives that the positive goes unnoticed.  Always remember, “Someone is praying for the blessings you take for granted.”

People are wearing masks, although beautiful on the outside, covering some traumatic pain, deep wounds, and hurtful scars.  I have found what Booker T. Washington said is true, “If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.”

Someone needs your smile, your hello, your words of encouragement, your touch or your time.

I hate buffets for several reasons, so it surprised my husband when I asked to go to one.  I believe God led us there to be a source of inspiration to that tired, over worked, under paid, and unappreciated waitress.

Kindness is infections.  “Kindness is the language the deaf CAN hear and the blind CAN see.” Dare to spread it to someone you encounter this week.

Right now, as you are reading this, ask yourself, who can I be a blessing to on this day?  If you think there is no one, ask God to open your eyes and show you the person in your path who is hurting, depressed, defeated or overwhelmed and needs your smile, encouragement, touch or time.

“The one who blesses others is abundantly blessed;  those who help others are helped.” Proverbs 11:25

If you liked this post, you may also like “Giving Thanks: A Lifestyle Not a Holiday“, “Count Your Blessings, Not Your Problems“, and “When Life Happens, How Will You Respond

~Keishawna Jolivette
I am a Jolly Mom and these are my Jolly Moments!

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Learning to Let Go!

Let Go and Let GodWhen I first decided to stay home with my son, people said I needed to do something more with my time than just take care of my husband and family.

Attempting to please others, I decided to start back up a business venture I was in years ago.

I was great at it and could do it with my eyes closed.  It seemed like the logical thing to do.  This had to be God, right?

I am not sure if I asked God or even prayed about it, I think I just did it.  Everything seemed to fall into place “perfectly” so this is what God wanted me to do, right?

As of late, I realized that I did not have time for the business venture.  Certain circumstances in my home require more of my time than I initially thought.  Also, there are some things I know God wants me doing that I don’t have time for because of trying to keep the business going.

One night God told me I needed to finish my obligation with my last client and shut down the business.

What will people say?  I will look like a failure.  Surely, God does not want me to look like a fool, right?

I once heard it said, “A good thing is NOT always a God thing”.  The business venture was a “good” thing, but since God did not lead me to do it, it wasn’t a “God” thing.

I think because God loves me, He graced me through this venture and my clients did not suffer.  However, after a lot debate within myself, I have finally decided to let it go!

At this point, it does not matter to me if people don’t understand or if they think I failed.  Ultimately…..

What God knows about me is more important than what others think about me.” Orebela Gbenga

I am learning to Let Go of what others think and Let God have his way in my life.  For me, this is true freedom – living for Him and not others.

If you are holding on to something or someone and you know you need to let go, I encourage you to do so. 

You never know what blessing is on the other side of you letting go.  It could be a better relationship, a better job, peace, joy, stability, etc.

“If you are brave enough to say goodbye, life will reward you with a new hello.” Paulo Coelho

I encourage you to:

“Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don’t try to figure out everything on your own.
Listen for God’s voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he’s the one who will keep you on track.” Proverbs 3:5-6 Message Bible

It’s sometimes easier said than done, but LET GO and LET GOD have his way!

If you liked this post, you may also like, “Giving Thanks: A Lifestyle Not a Holiday” and “Count Your Blessings, Not Your Problems

~Keishawna Jolivette
I am a Jolly Mom and these are my Jolly Moments!
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Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award

sisterhood-of-the-world-blogger-awardI am excited and honored that Leigh with SimpLeigh Organized  nominated me to receive the Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award.  In order to accept this award, I must do a few things.

First, I must thank the person who nominated me:

Thank you so much Leigh for the nomination.  Leigh has an amazing blog about saving money, organizing, decorating and cleaning your home! Be sure to check out her blog!

Second, I must share seven things about myself:

1.  I love butterflies and what they represent. One of my favorite quotes is, “Just when the caterpillar thought it was over, it became a butterfly”.  Therefore, no matter how ugly a situation may seem (the caterpillar); never give up because if you press through to the end, something beautiful (the butterfly) may come of it.

2.  My name has a special meaning.  When my mother was pregnant, my eight-year-old brother had a crush on a girl named Keishawna in his class.  He asked, and my mother allowed him to name me after his crush.  My brother drowned when I was three years old so it is special to know that one of the last things he did was name me.

3.  I love the color turquoise.  I am not sure why, but something about it is just beautiful to me.

4.  My son is a miracle baby.  When I was younger, a doctor told me that I would have a hard time getting pregnant, and if I did, she said I would not carry a baby full term.  I was overjoyed when I learned I was pregnant with my son.

A month after I found out I was expecting, the doctors discovered I had a blood clot, which potentially could have taken my life or caused an issue during my delivery.  To God be the glory, I delivered a healthy and happy baby on June 5, 2012.  He came out in two pushes!

5.  I love Christian fiction.  One of my favorite books is Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers.  It is a beautiful story of unconditional love, hope and redemption.

If you feel that you have done so much that no one could love you, I urge you to read this book.  It will show you that even at our worse, God’s love for us is unfailing and He can place someone in our lives who will love us regardless of the worst thing we have done.

6.  I love motivating and encouraging at-risk youth.  Growing up in single parent home, I was considered an “at-risk” teen.  By the grace of God, I overcame the stereotypes and accomplished so much. I want to serve as a source of hope for other teens that they do not have to become a product of their environment.

7. I am on a journey to find the “jolly” in every “moment” life brings my way! It is not just the name of this blog, but I am really purposing to make it a lifestyle because I know truly, “all things work together for the good” Romans 8:28.

Third, I must nominate seven bloggers that I follow and love:

The following blogs, in no particular order, have encouraged or inspired me in some way.  I hope that if you visit some of them, you are encouraged as well.

Daughter By Design: A Journey of Faith

Great Journey of Joy

Good Stewardship

Good Graciousness

Kriz Summer

Afrophire

Deeply Rooted In Him

 Lastly, I must post the award button on my website:  DONE!

Again, thank you Leigh for nominating The Jolly Moments to receive this award!

~Keishawna Jolivette
I am a Jolly Mom and these are my Jolly Moments!
Do not miss these Jolly Moments! 

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