Tuesday, July 24, 2012

His Hand Is On You

It’s my prayer that you are reading this and you’re feeling well today. If not, take comfort in this post. If you’re like me, you’ve gone through something traumatic in your life (and probably still are) where you feel that your life was sifted from you and/or has caused you to put your life on hold. As a result, you are either living in fear or indecision. You can overcome by praising God for the fact that you're still alive, and you are here with a God-given purpose. What was supposed to sift you out or caused you to put your life on hold didn't kill you, so that means God has His hands on you even though you wonder why you had to go through. Feel free to ask Him why, He loves you. There are probably a lot more questions going through your mind, and it’s totally understandable. I dedicate this blog post to anyone who has gone through a traumatic past and is still trying to get through it (or has gotten through it).

I want to extend my hand to you in friendship and in love. I understand that you might have felt alone at times wanting to give up in life. That was my life (and I’ll put this out and say I struggle with it too). Your past may not be my past, but mine was traumatic and I’m sure yours was too. That’s one thing we have in common. Just know that we’re on this road to recovery together and He has His hands on you.

I know there are going to be some people who read this and ridicule me; I’m cool with that (considering I’m used to it). The one thing remains though, I’m still alive and so are you. They tried to kill us, but we’re still here. We have scars, but we’re still here. I hope you were able to at least smile or cry tears of joy. Believe me when I say, it’s OK to cry. Sometimes you have to on this road to recovery.

I know there are times when we’ve tried to pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps, know that we can’t do this alone. We need each other on a horizontal level (and say I need help), and we need to say to God that we need help. There’s nothing wrong with asking for help, discern who to ask for help (because not everybody will have your best interest at heart). The unique thing about us considering we’ve survived what we did, is that we have sympathy for others (which is lacking in this world today). Everyone today is so selfish and out for themselves. And to add insult to injury, there are those who haven’t gone through what you did, and they tell you either to “get over it,” or “so what if I didn’t go through what you did; you need to grow up.” As a result, you end up feeling like a second-class citizen. I understand there are those who have good intentions, but they will never understand what you feel if they haven’t lived through what you had to.

A word of encouragement: if you make it out before me, help me out; and I’ll do the same vice versa. We’re in this together.

I don’t know who has heard this, but I’m sure an evil spirit will tell you that Jesus was raped (which He was), but He didn’t say a word, so that means you shouldn’t say a word now that you made it out (or you should’ve allowed it to continue without saying a word). This is totally misinterpreting the Scripture. Your voice needs to be heard. If more voices are raised, we can truly change the world to wrong the rights. If we abused victims are accountable, the abusers, the people who neglected us need to be accountable. There must be a balance, wouldn’t you agree? For many of you, your stories have touched me deeply and I want to say right here and right now that I love you and that I will always have your back. If you need an ear (in most cases, many of us know the answers to some of the questions in our mind and just need to get what’s in our heart and spirit out), just let me know and I’ll listen.

One lingering question you might have, why did I go through what I did? Well, we may not know the answer right now. But I am willing to believe that you’re still alive to either share your testimony to someone who’s about to go through what you did (or is trying to find a way out of their pain), or you are to write a book, and the list goes on. I don’t know who that is for along with this. You may have a ministry to teenagers, or a ministry geared to men (if you’re a man) or women (if you’re a woman). And the fact you’re still here to share your story is proof that He has His hands on you. I hope right now you can raise your hands towards heaven and say thank you Jesus for allowing me to stand here today.

I know what you went through has caused you to either live in fear or wanting to not pursue your childhood dreams. You might even feel that your life is on hold. I understand totally. Because you’re still here and on the road to recovery, take a moment to find out what is your greatest passion in life and what is your greatest talent (meaning: you know deep down inside you’re good at it? Once you find that out, pursue it and God will bless you (because His hand is on you). Acknowledge Him as you’re on that path.  I also know that your healing isn’t an overnight thing, it’s a process. God understands and will heal you in due time. Meanwhile, pursue your unique calling from Him, because the world needs your gift (and it’s not your body, OK). Your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit.

In closing: shake off your fears and don’t be afraid to live. It’s my prayer that this post encourages you. Feel free to comment (if you want to remain anonymous, please do so). Your destiny from God is waiting for you. Don’t worry about failing. You will fall down, just get up and know that His hand is on you.

Monday, July 23, 2012

Author Spotlight (Tamika L. Sims)

It's been a while since I've done an author spotlight and I still intend to keep this going. I'd like to turn your attention to an author who wrote a powerful book in my opinion entitled "The Plus Factor." If this book doesn't move you, I don't know what will. Hopefully, I will be able to write a book with her to be released late next year. Anyway, the author spotlight for this week is my sister & fellow author Tamika L. Sims.

Tamika Sims, a South Carolina native, survived a physically, emotionally, and sexually abusive relationship of eight years. Tamika used the pain and suffering endured to write the book The Plus Factor an autobiographical account of her journey from tragedy to triumph. Tamika currently serves as an Advisory Board Member for the DH White Center for Women and The Abigail Project whose mission is to empower, educate, and equip.

She believes strongly in volunteerism, civic engagement, and serving in her local community. Tamika has received trainings in the following subjects and more: Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault, Dating Violence, The Effects of Domestic Violence on Children, and Domestic Violence in the Faith Community.

Tamika received the Bachelor's of Science Degree in Information Technology from South University - Columbia.

She enjoys writing, reading, music, singing, and is a self-proclaimed coffee lover! Family and friends are most important to her and she devotes a substantial amount of her time to develop sustaining relationships with them.

Tamika is inspired by the writings of Eleanor Roosevelt, one of her favorite quotations is, “the future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams." 

Synopsis of her book "The Plus Factor:"

The Plus Factor is an autobiographical account of my journey from tragedy to triumph. It describes in vivid detail my life as the victim in my former abusive relationship. I invite the reader to come along and experience the highs and the lows with me throughout my experience and travel with me on my road to healing and rediscovering me. I also provide the reader with an in-depth look into the mind of a batterer, the criminal justice system and how domestic violence impacts the faith community. My abuser was a licensed and ordained deacon in my former church. Therefore, I address the church’s discipline, or lack thereof, or batterers.

Connect with Tamika online: