Employment, Favor, God's Will, Testimony Series

Flashback Friday: My Testimony–My Supernatural Year

Ladies, enjoy this flash from the past which was originally posted on January 15, 2014.

Happy New Year EmpowerMoments family! We have surely missed you! As we kick off the new year, we are beginning with a series entitled “Testimonies & Lessons”. We believe Revelation 12:11 when it says that we overcome by the word of our testimonies. We pray that our testimony and lessons from last year will EMPOWER you to triumph this year! May God bless you and make 2014 the greatest year of your life thus far!

A Canaanite woman from that vicinity came to him, crying out, “Lord, Son of David, have mercy on me! My daughter is suffering terribly from demon-possession.” Jesus did not answer a word. So his disciples came to him and urged him, “Send her away, for she keeps crying out after us.” He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of Israel.” The woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said. He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs.” “Yes, Lord,” she said, “but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.” Then Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour. (Matthew 15:22-28 NIV)

During, “My Church Experience” the guest preacher shared the above scripture. She said many would’ve been offended if Jesus called them a dog but Jesus gave the Canaanite woman something that she wasn’t supposed to have. She continued stating that God’s grace will slide you a deal that you don’t deserve. He will send people that don’t know you to fight for you. He will give you things that no one, including yourself, will understand.

On New Years Eve 2012 I decided to bring in the New Year watching my church online, instead of heading out with my family. 2012 was unexpected and a bit of a rollercoaster and I just wanted 2013 to be different. My pastor said that 2013 would be the year of supernatural. I jumped, screamed and cried believing that 2013 would be everything I prayed it would be. I just wanted stability. The first quarter of 2013 was everything I prayed AGAINST! I was in a dark place of hurt, disappointment and discontentment. I felt like I was losing everything that I cared about: friendships, relationships, status and understanding. I truly had to live Matthew 6:34 NIV  “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”  There were many days I told God I wouldn’t take my life but if He could take it and heal my family from my absence that would be comforting. But just like the Canaanite woman, I didn’t want to give up.

After being unemployed for 6 months, a friend sent me a text letting me know that she was interviewing for a position and encouraged me to apply. As God would have it, a friend from college worked in Human Resources (HR) at this company. I reached out to her about openings in the marketing department. Although she informed me of an opening and asked me to submit my resume, I was getting to a place of contentment and a part of me was just tired of disappointment. I never looked into it. When my friend inquired about why I failed to submit the resume, I really didn’t have a good answer so I decided to finally review the position. I remember looking at that job description and it reading, “Dene’ this is your job.” Once I got down to the bottom I saw something that has stopped me from applying to jobs before -experience: 5 years. I had roughly two years of experience but only through internships. I’m not sure why I decided to submit my resume. I don’t even remember submitting my resume. I just remember one day getting a call to set up the interview.

It seemed like God opened a door, window and vent because I had options. A few days later two additional interviews came up. I asked God for wisdom on choosing the right position. A week before my final interview at the job I really wanted, I received an offer from another company. I was conflicted. Should I should pass up a for sure job for one that was just a maybe? The current offer wasn’t offering the pay or the opportunity that I expected but I figured this is where young marketing professionals start. Should I take the “sure thing” or have faith for the job I really wanted? Against the advice of friends, I declined that offer. I knew what God had for me. I had to walk in faith praying that the job I felt in my heart would come through.

I’ll never forget  praying that God provided the other applicants with a better opportunity because this one was mine. I was claiming it! When I received the call a couple of weeks later, I hung up and jumped up and down saying, “thank You, Lord!” then I fell to my knees and wept for joy.

This job is everything I’ve ever wanted. My salary is more than I expected even with my little experience. My supervisor is an amazing woman who pushes me to grow and develop into who God wants me to be. I’m the youngest person to ever work in my department and one of the youngest at my entire company. Since I started my team’s performance has seen more than a 600% increase in growth and 100% increase in engagement. (That’s favor not me!) I didn’t have 5 years of experience but God used my supervisor to give me my dream job with a deal I’m still trying to understand.

Dear Daddy,

I thank You for continued grace, favor and wisdom. God I thank You for a daily humbling and for trusting me with this assignment.. Father, it’s humbling to see a plan You whispered in my ear come to pass. Your love is shown everyday in the people I work with and the care of those who advise me. I am reminded everyday that You will never leave me nor forsake me. You will make a way out of no way and always see  Your promises to pass. In Jesus‘ Name, Amen.

Ladies, I share my testimony to EMPOWER you to remember the supernatural things God has done in your life. Every time something goes wrong remember the moments that God brought you through. Every morning we wake up to grace and walk into favor and it’s not just the jobs, the cars and other material things. My job reminds me every day that God specializes in the supernatural. He knows the desires of our hearts so keep the faith refusing to settle on anything less than the grand prize. That includes anything that isn’t from God whether it be a car,  a man, a job or a mediocre relationship with Him. Be steadfast knowing that when God’s promise comes to pass it will blow your mind!

Has God done something “supernatural” for you? Share your story with us.

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Ms. Dené B. is a student of life who enjoys human studies and social media. She graduated from Loyola University Chicago where the motto is “Preparing People to Lead Extraordinary Lives,” She took her education and school spirit to heart and now is a young adult striving to live an extraordinary life while helping others achieve the same. With a Bachelor of Arts in Advertising and Public Relations and minors in Sociology and Visual Communication, Dené worked at a top PR firm but her greatest accomplishments resides in volunteer work with Autism Speaks and Big Brothers Big Sisters. Currently, she finds herself pursuing a vision God placed in her of starting her own business. One of her go to scriptures is, “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is Gods will for you in Christ Jesus.” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NIV)

Blessings, Career, Contentment, Employment, Encouragement, Faith, Faithfulness, Goals & Dreams, God's Grace, Miscellaneous, Patience, Patience, Persistance, Preparation, Restoration, Spiritual Therapy, Strength, Transitions Series, Trials, Trusting God

Transitions: Trampled on the Floor

The past few years of my life have been ones of transition, endless waiting and sometimes disappointment. I’ve alluded to and written about it many times. Long story short, I left my job in Texas to start my own business and moved to Atlanta for a three-month transition. In my mind that is all it would take before the business was up and running and I could move to my real destination, Washington, DC (because this is where the business was based). That three months has turned into over two years and I reached a point where I was tired of telling people that I was moving anywhere because I just didn’t know when/if it would happen. As a matter of fact, I actually told people I was moving to Washington, DC nearly two years before I left Texas so in total this has now been a four year wait. If you have had any experience with God you know that many times your best made plans aren’t a part of His plan.

But they know not the thoughts of the Lord, neither understand they his counsel: for he shall gather them as the sheaves into the floor. Micah 4:12 KJV From my brief study, I found that sheaves are stalks of grain and they were gathered on the threshing floor during harvest time for a two-step process. First the actual grain was separated from the chaff. To do this, oxen would pull a metal spiked sledge that would break the heads of the grain from the stalk or they would just trample them. Next the broken stalks were tossed into the air and the wind would blow the lighter chaff away while the heavier grain would fall back on the floor where it could then be gathered for use.

My time of transition has been like the sheaves on the threshing floor. I went from making a very lucrative salary to making zero, zilch, nada. Months would go by and I had nothing but what I could borrow or get from someone else. My mini-vacations that I would frequently take turned into staycations in my room. I found myself in an “asking” position when I was usually the giver. Shopping excursions were non-existent as my belly became wider, clothes became tattered and shoes wobbled to the side. When I could no longer afford my health insurance, the aches and pains started. I went from being a mover and shaker, featured in Ebony Magazine to feeling insignificant. Finally my car called it quits. Although I grew up poor, THIS was a very unfamiliar position. Throughout this process I have felt a gamut of emotions: happiness, depression, bitterness, envy, contentment and disappointment. I had good days and many bad ones. During the process, I felt beat down and trampled but it was only to extract the good grain. Without the threshing floor, the harvest would be incomplete.

I had to learn more about myself and have many things extracted and tossed so that in the finishing process only the good grain was left in me. Sometimes God humbles you by removing the frills and unnecessary things to get you to the place He has ordained for you. A place where you are truly dependent on Him and can recognize that it is His goodness, and not your own doing, that gets you your blessings.

If we are faithless, he remains faithful for he cannot disown himself. 2 Timothy 2:13 NIV Admittedly during this process, my faith wavered; yet, God remained faithful. Did I get everything that I wanted when I wanted? No! However, He absolutely never failed to supply my needs. This month (July) represents a turning point in my life. After a little over two years in business, I received my first paycheck from my business one that will come consistently versus “some” money at any random month. From my time in the threshing process, I know how to use my money wiser so that when God grants me the increase that I need and desire, I will make sound investments versus temporary gratification. My “giving” strategy will be a lot different because when I couldn’t give I realized that people would always find a way without me. It made me realize that I was a resource and not their “source.” I learned that lesson for myself as well. As I sit in a hotel room now after a second trip of apartment hunting in Washington, DC, I have ultimately learned that if we can only learn to trust God and His timing He will prepare us for our harvest.

Dear Daddy,

Thank You for my time in the threshing process as You prepared me for the harvest. I ask that You continue to let those traits, people and other characteristics that are not useful blow off of me into the wind. Help me to be anxious for nothing because You have told me that in due season I will reap a harvest. You have been faithful to Your Word even in the midst of my doubt. God, I ask that You continue to build my faith as I move into the next phase that You have prepared for me. In Jesus Name, Amen!

Ladies, today I EMPOWER you to trust Him in the process. Although it’s hard because what you see what’s happening in other people’s lives (marriages, babies, career advancements, notoriety, goal accomplishments, financial prosperity) may seem foreign for your own. Know that He is preparing you for your harvest by extracting those things that aren’t useful for that next phase in your life. Trust that He is faithful to you because it is who He is and who He has always been.

Are you waiting on God and feel as if it is not going to happen? If you examine yourself, is it that God has you on the threshing floor? Share your story with us in the comment section.

Read a related EmpowerMoment: Seasons Change

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Ms. Chancee` Lundy lives in Atlanta, Georgia and is an entrepreneur as she is the co-owner of Nspiregreen, LLC, an environmental consulting firm. She is also a dedicated daughter, sister, friend and community servant. She has used her gift of public speaking to lead workshops across the globe speaking to crowds as large as 10,000 people. Her guiding scriptures this week are Philippians 4:11-13 “Not that I speak in respect of want: for I have learned, in whatsoever state I am, therewith to be content. I know both how to be abased, and I know how to abound: every where and in all things I am instructed both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.

Blessings, Congratulations, Employment, Growth/Maturity, Inspirational, Obedience, Trusting God

Blessings Out of Unusual Circumstances

A few days ago marked the seventh anniversary of the day I was arrested.  Back then I knew a girl who was a professional “booster” and despite my mother’s warning about her character, I decided to associate with her.  By the end of that summer, I had gained a friend along with a rap sheet. 

It sounded like a good idea when she offered to steal me a few outfits in exchange for a ride to the mall.  It seemed harmless yet beneficial to be a chauffeur for the day if I would be able to return to my Black college campus in style for my sophomore year.  With over $2,000 worth of “HOT” merchandise we proceeded to exit the doors of Carson Pirie Scott only to be abruptly stopped by security.  To make a long story short, God blessed me with a public defender that was able to get my charge reduced from a FELONY to a misdemeanor.  He hopefully instructed me that I would be able to get the charge expunged or sealed by the time I graduated in three years.  However, seven years have passed and I’m still waiting…

Last week my cousin informed me of a job fair for ex-offenders.  Instantly, I felt as if there was nothing they could offer me because I refused to work a factory job having obtained a Bachelor’s degree and pursuing a Master’s.  In my mind, ex-offenders are only left with the bottom of the barrel positions because no one hires us anyway…so why bother?  Despite my lack of enthusiasm, my cousin continued to throw the idea around until I gave in. 

“I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:14 NIV)

As I drove in silence, I chose to take that moment and talk to God.  I was sure to express that I was not exactly sure why I was even going but I learned as a little girl that obedience to God is better than any sacrificial offering.  I went even further to verbalize that no matter what the outcome, this would be at least an opportunity to promote EmpowerMoments in order to give Him the glory.  I promised that I would give a card to every woman in the room–job or not.

After visiting a few tables I realized there was a live radio broadcast going on by a local station.  I made my way over in hopes of talking to someone about a job that would utilize my Telecommunications degree.  However, I was asked to sit down for an impromptu interview.  I eagerly grab the headphones and adjusted the mic for my debut.  Just being myself, I intrigued the station manager enough for a one on one once the q&a wrapped up.  She was impressed by my natural ability to roll with the punches but she was truly WOWED by my excitement for EmpowerMoments!  I passed her a card and gave her a quick overview of what we stand for.  By the end of my synopsis she offered me a trial spot on Sundays entitled EMPOWERMOMENTS!   

“No temptation has seized you except what is common to man.  And God is faithful; he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13 NIV)

God is so awesome that He literally turned an upset into a setup for a blessing.  Not only did He give me faith that someone will hire me despite my past but He showed me that as long as I am seeking to glorify Him there are NO LIMITS! 

Dear Daddy,

Thank You for turning a gloomy situation into a splendid opportunity.  Please forgive me for the times that I have placed restrictions and boundaries on You.  You have turned my circumstances around on many occasions only to add credibility to my testimony. Thank you!  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, I encourage each of you to EMPOWER yourself to remove the limits from God.  Let Him take control for a moment and doors that have been closed before will be opened and your blessing will be there with your name on it! Be Blessed! 🙂

Allow Israel & New Breed’s “Take the Limits Off” to minister to you: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G5gMiYGG5AE

Ms. Latasha Sampson is an accomplished writer who is currently pursuing her Masters Degree in Human Resources Management.  She resides in Nashville, Tennessee where she is a faithful member of Mt. Zion Baptist Church.  Her favorite scripture is “No weapon formed against you shall prosper, and every tongue which rises against you in judgment You shall condemn” Isaiah 54:17