Best of 2011 Series, Singleness

Best of 2011: #10 – Single in the City: Ready for Love

We are featuring our top EmpowerMoments of 2011. They made us laugh and they made us cry. They comforted us during troubled times and made us uncomfortable in our mess. But most important, they EMPOWERED us to be greater women all around! We are better wives, mothers, daughters, friends, servants and employees. We have been EMPOWERED to love harder, forgive more and listen better. We thank God for EmpowerMoments! Enjoy the Best of Series!

As I’ve stated twice before, one of the hardest challenges I’ve ever encountered was being a single, Christian woman but I never mentioned the hardest event to attend as a single woman…WEDDINGS!!  A few weeks ago a friend from college met his beautiful bride at the altar to exchange vows before God, family, and loved ones.  Truthfully, I was very happy for him but I could not help but to think about my future husband. 

Weddings are supposed to be joyous occasions but it is very easy to lose focus as a single guest.  As the ceremony commenced I was deeply involved in a dispute with God in my head.  I eagerly questioned God when was it going to be my turn?  Where is my husband?  When am I going to be able to start planning my dream wedding?  Why everyone else and not me? I desperately wanted God to know that I am READY FOR LOVE!!

Just as India Arie poured her heart out on the lyrics to that song, I poured my heart out to God.  The entire wedding was a bit much for me as my emotions were torn.  Eventually I put aside my feelings and decided to chime in on the celebration.  However, once the wedding was over and I was on my way home, I chose to have a real conversation with Jesus and not just a one-sided interview like before.

As I drove back to Nashville, He revealed something to me that was a slap in the face.  “And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting of Christ.” (2 Thessalonians 3:5 KJV)  It was at that moment that I realized that I can be READY for love forever but being patient for it is what God expects.  Since God knows the true desires of my heart, why was I questioning the arrival of my husband?  He is in control of the situation but clearly I have not let it go.  The real issue is that sometimes we have to surrender it over to Jesus and let it be while still having the patience to wait for Him to deliver on His promises. 

Dear Daddy,

Thank You for Your promises.  I know that what You have for me is for me but I pray for the patience to wait for it.  I understand that You have already worked it out but I ask that You help me to stay in position until it is released.  Lord, I pray for the obedience to surrender it to You and allow You to have Your way without question. I am READY for a lot of things but I pray for the patience to wait on my God to see me worthy of it.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, single or married, I encourage each of you to EMPOWER yourself and others to be patient in your situation.  Remember God created you so He personally knows your long lists of wants. He is just waiting for the opportunity to increase your territory but are you going to be patient enough to wait it out?   

Read a related EmpowerMoment: Single in the City 7: Ready with God

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

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Blessings, Encouragement, Inspirational, Singleness, Spirit of Loneliness

What do the lonely do at Christmas?

This was a popular song, but also a very legitimate question.  I have found myself asking myself this question as most people prepare to spend this joyous time of year with friends and loved ones I have struggled with feeling lost, sad, depressed, and lonely.  As the Christmas and New Year approaches it is also a difficult time for those who have lost loved ones, and have no one to spend the holiday with.  My grandmother died last year on Christmas Eve so this has brought about some feelings of sadness as well as loss. However, the Lord said, ” I will never leave you nor forsake you” (Hebrews 13:5 KJV).

I have also discovered during this difficult time of the year those of us that are single begin to focus on the depressing reality that we have gone another year without having somebody to share it with.

Isaiah 41:10 NKJV Fear not, for I am with you;  be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you,  I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

The Lord will always be by your side and with you.  If you have no one else in your corner you can always count on God.  I speak about things that I am guilty of myself.  I go in and out of a lot of homes because I am a Case Manager.  During this season I found myself encountering negativity and depressed spirits in most of the homes that I entered.  I had to realize that I was in the midst of a spiritual warfare.  The devil wanted me to take the spirits home with me that I was encountering in my clients’ homes.  I realized that I needed to pray before entering those homes to ensure those spirits were not transferred onto me.

Even though many of you may not go in and out of homes the way I do we all encounter these same negative spirits on a daily basis.  These spirits may be in the form of co-workers, family, and even friends.  We may not always see these spirits because it has more to do with our own insecurities than others.  Someone may be simply discussing family plans.  We immediately begin to think about the family we loss.  They may be talking about their significant others and children and we see it as bragging or boasting.  We must not allow the spirit of jealousy and bitterness manifest in our lives.  We must know that Jesus is the Reason for the Season and we must never forget that.

Dear Daddy,

I come before You during this joyous as well as difficult time of year and ask for Your strength and spirit to be with us.  I pray that You will help us to remember that this is a time to focus on You and how You died for our sins.  This is not about how many presents we will get or how much we have.  This is a time to reflect on how much we can do for others and how blessed we are to be able to see another year in our right mind, good health, and peace. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

I EMPOWER you to take this time to look at the many reasons you are blessed instead of allowing the negative spirits to make you look at what you don’t have.  Reflect on all the ways you have grown in the last years and the ways that would like for God to continue to manifest in your life.  I EMPOWER you in the New Year to EMPOWER someone else.  Show them what God has done in your life and what He can do in theirs.

Ms. Sherita Shelton currently resides in Nashville, Tennessee.  She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s in Professional Counseling and is currently pursuing her counseling license.  Sherita works as a therapist and case manager for children as well as adults.  She facilitates groups for single women and offers mentoring and individual counseling for her clients.  Sherita’s favorite Bible verse is Proverbs 3:5-6: “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lot not on your own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.”

Patience, Single in the City Series, Singleness, Strength

Single in the City 7: Ready with God!

God recently blessed me with a job at my church home.  Working in ministry has been a totally different experience than the corporate world yet very fulfilling in more ways than one.  I believe that He strategically placed me there for several reasons, one of which made the perfect topic for this EmpowerMoment.

I must admit that the church office is filled with a GREAT array of man eye candy!  I work in close corners with dozens of men that fit my Christian dating criteria and to top it off they are OH SO HANDSOME.  I have found myself running home daily just to tell my cousin about all the good looking gems that I am surrounded by every afternoon.  It’s almost amazing to me to see so many established, successful black men working so diligently for the Lord! I LOVE it!

However, I must admit being single in this environment causes me to become a tad bit anxious as I wait for my husband to find me.  Just to clarify, I don’t intend to be the Jezebel of the congregation but this is just conformation that what I desire my mate to be and stand for does in fact exist. “Blessed is the man [woman] who preserves under trial, because when he has stood the test, he [she] will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.” (James 1:12 NIV)  Ladies, the truth of the matter is that I have to wait on God and have the faith that when the time is right He will do what He says.

Of course it is easy for me to say/write it, but the reality is that I feel that I am ready but apparently God knows otherwise.  So often we as single women just know we are ready to be married, have kids, and a house with a white picket fence but we have to trust that God knows best.  A lot of the time we are so focused on walking down the aisle that we find ourselves taking to relationships with men that we know are nothing like the man that God would have for us.  Well I am here to tell you that your Christian checklist was not written in vain. (See Single in the City 2  for all of the other stuff on your list!) There are plenty of eligible bachelors with those characteristics that you desire but it is NOT up to you to pick him out of the crowd.  For the Bible says, “It is not good for a man to be alone.  I will make a helper suitable for him” (Genesis 2:18) It also tells us that “He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the Lord.” (Proverbs 18:22 NIV)

With that said, it is not for us to understand, for the God we serve has already appointed the day, time, and setting where you will cross paths with that certain mister that He made just for you.  So stop with all the questioning and just stand firm on the potter’s wheel and allow Him to continue molding you so that when He sends him you are completely ready! Ready with God that is!

Dear Daddy,

Continue to strengthen my faith in You as I wait for You to send me my mate.  Give me hope that he is out there, but most important, grant me patience to wait for him to come my way.  Help me to understand that You are simply preparing me for a loving and lasting relationship, and the work You have to do with me may take a while.  Keep my mind on You during the process.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Single gals across the world, I EMPOWER you to REALLY wait on God to send your mate.  Stop talking about it and be about it!  Let Him have control over this and not just on those things that YOU feel are in need of His attention.  Instead, use that energy to get in position and get READY!

Read the entire series: Single in the City

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

Growth/Maturity, Miscellaneous, Organization, Preparation, Singleness

In Preparation…It’s More Than Just Spiritual!

Like many saved, single, young women, I constantly profess to be “In Preparation!” I am putting myself in a position to get “CHOSE”…as the expression says!  I am constantly asking God to show me ME, seeking God to remove anything not like Him.  My constant prayer is that He clean me up spiritually and help me to let go of anything and anyone that is not connected to the destiny I have in Him.  I am involved in church; I keep myself busy at work and pursuing my personal interests.  I am doing everything the singles’ books say to do.  I am living a successful single life RIGHT?? I wish I could say yes but unfortunately I cannot.

While pursuing all these wonderful endeavors, I drive around in a messy car, work in a messy environment and live in a cluttered house.  It has become the running joke among my friends that I live out of my car.  My co-workers have justified my messy, paper-strewn classroom with statements like, “Well there’s REAL learning going on in there!”  OH and my house?! I reached the point where I justified the clutter by saying, “Well my kitchen and my bathroom are ALWAYS clean, and that is all that matters!”

God is a God of ORDER!!!  From the time of creation, God set everything up in divine order (See Genesis 1-2) Later on in the book of Leviticus, God set up the order of the church.  In the New Testament we are told, “…that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s spirit lives in you…”(I Corinthians 3:16 NIV) If God required order in the Old Testament church where His spirit dwelled, it makes sense that He would also require order from us today.

This order goes beyond the spiritual. While I was going after the things of God I was dismissing this simple but VERY important fact.  God also revealed to me that I was also holding up some things and divine connections that He has for me.  How do I connect you with this influential person and you let them come visit you in your messy classroom?  How can you drive up to a black tie event with papers strewn all in the backseat of your car?  Better still, how do I send you a mate and you have not learned how to organize a home yet?  “For God is not a God of disorder, but of peace!” (1 Corinthians 14:33 NIV)

This realization was a hard pill to swallow especially with how I portrayed myself to have it all together! I’m a woman of God, a prayer warrior, I.N.D.E.P.E.N.D.E.N.T. etc. etc. blah blah blah!! However, I had to accept this truth about myself in order to move forward.  I have made a commitment to clean and organize my car, my classroom and my house.  Being in preparation for what God has for you, whatever it may be, is more than just getting your heart right!  Your habits and behavior must line up with where God is taking you. God must know that He can trust you and that you are ready.  God needs to be able to say,  “…You have been faithful over a few things…I will make you ruler over many…” (Matthew 25:21 NIV)

God said to me, if you are faithful in cooking, cleaning, and organizing when its just YOU, you let me know that if I bless you with a husband and children your home will be in order and your husband and children will be taken care of.  With the behavior that I displayed, my actions were telling God the exact opposite. I am on the road to being prepared for the next phase of my life, with not only a clean heart but a CLEAN HOUSE!!

Dear Daddy,

Thank You for being a God of order.  Thank You for ordering our steps.  Thank You for knowing the plans You had for us even before we were born and knowing exactly how You were going to lead us to our destinies even before we took our first steps.  Thank You for always being a loving Father that not only convicts and corrects but also leads us in the right direction and remains with us as we go on our journey.  We ask that You continue to show us the areas in which we need to grow.  We bind laziness and we ask that You give us the strength and energy to do what we have to do to get and maintain clean and organized surroundings. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Sisters I EMPOWER you today to clean and organize your surroundings:

1)    PRAY and ask God for guidance and wisdom as you start this process
2)    Trash and/or Recycle anything you do not need
3)    Break out the bucket and bleach, clean and disinfect
4)    Invest in organizational materials (file cabinets, bookshelves, storage bins etc.)  If you don’t know where to start www.lifeorganizers.com is a great resource; it has wonderful ideas that are also very inexpensive.

Ms. Katrina Richard is an up and coming professional residing in Chicago, IL.  She strives to incorporate knowledge and life-skills to teenagers in her profession as a high school history teacher.  Katrina is very active in her church community where she serves in the prayer ministry as well as in the nursery.  She has a passion for serving in the lesser known areas of ministry because she believes every facet of ministry is important to kingdom building and spiritual development of the believers. Her favorite scripture is Jeremiah 29:11 — “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.”

God, God's Love, Relationships, Single in the City Series, Singleness, Spirit of Loneliness

Single in the City 6: The COLD Winter

As the winter months approach, as a single gal I seem to feel a bit of anxiety trying to surface.  I have found that colder days are a sure fire indicator of just how COLD my love life is.  In the spring and summer I can get out and about, embracing my single-hood for what it is.  During that time my girls and I are able to hit the town and never think twice about a man or the lack thereof.  But as soon as the first fall breeze blows, I yearn for the comfort of the opposite sex.   I have been single for two years and every time the weather changes my emotions get riled up.

Just talking with others I have concluded that this feeling is almost universal for single women every where.  Wintry weather has been coined the “boo” season because it is always better to stay inside and cuddle with a man, than fight the frigid temps alone.  Even worse, there are people who are fine with being single 75% of the year but when those few COLD months come around being single is no longer an option.  So that leads me to the question- are we desiring to store men like the animals in the forest store food for the winter?  If so, how will we ever break ourselves of this habit?

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:7 NIV) The bible makes it simple in saying that when those feelings of loneliness show up we are to hand it over to God.  Of course that is easier said than done but the reality is that God really is waiting on us to catch up and hand it over to Him.  Even David had to take a pause for the cause to cry out to the Lord in Psalms 25:14- “Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted.” (NIV)

The problem with most of us single women (myself included) is that we prefer to cry on the shoulder of a man rather than cry out to God.  Ladies, being a single Christian truly is a daunting task but rejoicing in the promises of God is effortless.  We must remember to rely on God in all areas, even our love lives.  God is not restricted to church affairs, but instead we should incorporate Him into everything.

Dear Daddy,

Forgive me for the times that I chose a man in the natural rather than communing with You in the spirit.  Please help me to remember to cry out to You whenever I feel lonely.  I know that these next few months will be even harder and I ask that You continue to console me.  Whenever I think about finding comfort elsewhere, remind me who I am in You!  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Single ladies across the world, I EMPOWER to spend the winter with Jesus!  When it gets cold outside, wrap yourself in the Word of God and before you know it spring will be in the air! Be Blessed! 🙂

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

God's Love, Inspirational, Miscellaneous, Motivation, Relationships, Single in the City Series, Singleness, Strength

Single in the City 5: Weak in My Knees

I get so weak in the knees I can hardly speak.
I lose all control and something takes over me.
In a daze, your love’s so amazing, it’s not a phase.
I want you to stay with me, by my side.
I swallow my pride, your love is so sweet.
It knocks me right off of my feet.
I can’t explain why your loving makes me weak.

(Lyrics from SWV’s “Weak”)

Since last month’s entry I have been speaking to several single Christian women, both family and friends.  I realized that although situations were different there was one common factor…problems with MEN!  From there I was intrigued to dig a little deeper and find out the real source of this epidemic.  It became apparent that each of us has had one or more members of the opposite sex that we had fallen weak for.

When speaking of weaknesses the mind will usually wander to that addiction to the morning cup of coffee or late night chocolate cravings but contrary to popular belief, weaknesses can come in human form!  With that said, when I refer to weakness I’m talking about that one guy that you LOVED unconditionally, no matter what.  Some of us have been with a person that was physically, verbally, and/or emotionally abusive and could not figure out exactly what the attraction was. 

Well ladies, my research has concluded that we have lost sight as to where our strength really comes from. “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” (2 Corinthians 12:9 NIV) Many of us are guilty of holding on to toxic relationships without the courage to leave.  The reason is that we have put that individual before God.  If we all just took a moment to look over that relationship’s timeline, I am certain that there is a second in history that we put him over HIM.  So not only did we choose to love him more than HIM, but more than ourselves as well.  However, the Bible reassures us that the grace Jesus gives us is more than enough to overcome any situation that arises!  We must realize that whatever empty voids that we are trying to fill by staying in such harmful circumstances, God is ready to give us the strength to endure and triumph.  Therefore, weakness is not an option for a child of God like you!

Dear Daddy,

Thank You for highlighting my weaknesses especially when they cause me to lose sight of the love You have for me.  I pray that You continue to help me fill the empty holes with Your grace so that I may find the inner strength that You birthed inside me.  Lord, remind me daily that weakness is not an option for a kingdom builder!  I have great work to do for You and I must not let anyone cause me to lose focus of that.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, I ask that you EMPOWER yourself to let that weakness go!  Anyone or anything that is causing you to put God second is not worth LOVING!! Love on God more!  Be Blessed! 🙂    

 To read the whole Single in the City Series, click here. 

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

Black Music Month Series, Patience, Relationships, Single in the City Series, Singleness, Spiritual Therapy, Trusting God

Single in the City 3: Ready for Love

As I’ve stated twice before, one of the hardest challenges I’ve ever encountered was being a single, Christian woman but I never mentioned the hardest event to attend as a single woman…WEDDINGS!!  A few weeks ago a friend from college met his beautiful bride at the altar to exchange vows before God, family, and loved ones.  Truthfully, I was very happy for him but I could not help but to think about my future husband. 

Weddings are supposed to be joyous occasions but it is very easy to lose focus as a single guest.  As the ceremony commenced I was deeply involved in a dispute with God in my head.  I eagerly questioned God when was it going to be my turn?  Where is my husband?  When am I going to be able to start planning my dream wedding?  Why everyone else and not me? I desperately wanted God to know that I am READY FOR LOVE!!

Just as India Arie poured her heart out on the lyrics to that song, I poured my heart out to God.  The entire wedding was a bit much for me as my emotions were torn.  Eventually I put aside my feelings and decided to chime in on the celebration.  However, once the wedding was over and I was on my way home, I chose to have a real conversation with Jesus and not just a one-sided interview like before.

As I drove back to Nashville, He revealed something to me that was a slap in the face.  “And the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God, and into the patient waiting of Christ.” (2 Thessalonians 3:5 KJV)  It was at that moment that I realized that I can be READY for love forever but being patient for it is what God expects.  Since God knows the true desires of my heart, why was I questioning the arrival of my husband?  He is in control of the situation but clearly I have not let it go.  The real issue is that sometimes we have to surrender it over to Jesus and let it be while still having the patience to wait for Him to deliver on His promises. 

Dear Daddy,

Thank you for Your promises.  I know that what You have for me is for me but I pray for the patience to wait for it.  I understand that You have already worked it out but I ask that You help me to stay in position until it is released.  Lord, I pray for the obedience to surrender it to You and allow You to have Your way without question. I am READY for a lot of things but I pray for the patience to wait on my God to see me worthy of it.  In Jesus’ Name, Amen!

Ladies, single or married, I encourage each of you to EMPOWER yourself and others to be patient in your situation.  Remember God created you so He personally knows your long lists of wants. He is just waiting for the opportunity to increase your territory but are you going to be patient enough to wait it out?   

Continuing our Black Music Month party, enjoy India Arie’s “Ready for Love”:

 Surely, you want to win! Check out our monthly contest by clicking here

Ms. Latasha Sampson is an accomplished writer who is currently pursuing her Masters Degree in Human Resources Management.  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