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The Gospel According to Life

We have such a special emnpowerment lineup planned for you tomorrow on The People’s Radio, Knoxville’s WOZO 103.9 FM.  I can hardly contain myself!  If you have been searching for deeper meaning in your life, tomorrow’s shows are going to be that catalyst for you.  Click HERE to Stream from  9:00 – 11:00 AM EST.

Activate your Life! The Gospel of You

I have a special guest, Dr. James Williams from the University of Tennessee, who will be discussing the journey of his life in his book From Thug to Scholar.  Our discussion will delve into the ideals of becoming a living prayer.

Want to see Dr. Williams in action? Click HERE
Missed last week’s show? Listen to  a recap of “Letting Go”  HERE

Relationship Asylum: The Art of Communication  
What can healthy communication teach us? How do our perceptions get in the way of healthy communication? What archetypes are most likely to set off communication breakdowns and how do we heal the rifts? All these questions and more will be answered on tomorrow’s show!

Missed last week’s show? Listen to a recap of “Gratitude and Faith” HERE 

Creating a Culture of Peace is What Life is All About. 
As an emotional healer, writer, scholar, and wisdom teacher, I believe it is my purpose to create a culture of peace from the seeds of my inmost self. I help others do the same in my work with Starlight House Creative Sanctuary for Women.  Starlight House is a place for women to grow emotionally, mentally and spiritually. Through interactive spiritual counseling sessions, artistic workshops and writing sessions, I help women find their truest voice to express to the world.  When we address the war within we see peace in the world.

Lord? No.

Lord /lôrd/ (n.): someone or something having power, authority, or influence; a master or ruler.

“lord of the sea”

synonyms:  magnate, tycoon, mogul, captain, baron, king…


Call it an aversion to authority, but I always shudder when I hear someone refer to a deity, no matter the pantheon, as “Lord.”

The year was 1986; I walked hand in hand with my precious mother to uptown Oxford, Pennsylvania on the way to the library.

The town of Oxford was no place for a wild dreamer like me to conjure the magic of a full life. It rests just a few miles from the start of the Mason-Dixon Line. Oxford seemed to always be caught in a purgatory between freedom of thought and the amputation to progress. Its secrets were in the underground KKK meetings and sterile church services. Twenty five hundred people, most of which were God-fearing, boxed-in racists, comprised this decayed town that smelled of dead dreams and cow shit.

As mama and I walked past the shoe maker’s store, we encountered a woman that lived in the row of homes on Market Street named Mary Morales. Mary was a shunned woman of the town, which meant she was a good friend to mama. Mary had long graying hair, never wore makeup and had faded, home-made tattoos on her arms. Her behavior was often erratic in that upon greeting mama, she often broke down into tears. Today was no different.

“Praise the Lord!” My mother greeted her with an exciting cadence and broad smile.

“Praise the Lord!” Mary replied. She asked mom how she was feeling and before she had a chance to answer, Mary wept.

“I’m so lucky to be a slave to Christ. He is my Lord and master. I can never go back with him in my corner. I can never be without him.”

As the two women chatted about the pitfalls of life, I will never forget the look of desperation in Mary’s eyes as she poured out her heart to my mother whom she believed was a messenger sent directly from God, as she later pointed out in their conversation. As we stood there for what seemed to be an eternity, I became scared of the way that Mary talked about death and the devil. I pulled on mama’s skirt and was ignored.

“Can we pray, Ida?” Mary implored.

“Of course we can.”

In the street, two desperate women stood in the heat of the midday sun supplicating to their master to grant them the gift of their ships coming in to rescue them from the curses of their lives. “One day my ship will come in.” Mama always said this to me as she stared at the mailbox waiting on my father’s child support check. My mother had many Lords and Masters.

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Love is Sweet Surrender

“Something amazing happens when we surrender and just love. We melt into another world, a realm of power already within us. The world changes when we change. The world softens when we soften. The world loves us when we choose to love the world.”Marianne Williamson

Choose Love.

One of the best lessons I’ve ever learned about love is to just let go, to let it take you.

You can try to outrun the longings of your own soul, but eventually you will need to turn and face the possibility that everything in life is about love.

There is nothing else.  Just love.

And if you do not allow the jaws of life to rip open your chest and do surgery on your small heart, enlarging it and stretching it beyond what you think is possible, you will miss out on the tastiest, most juicy parts of life. You will plan the most wonderful party and forget to go. You will arrive just in time to clean up the mess and take out the trash.

The fact of the matter is, you will be half the person you were meant to be, if you don’t surrender yourself to love.


It hurts.

It scares me. It reveals parts of me I don’t want anyone to see.


It calls me out in my smallest moments.

It requires that I stand for something. It means I must step up and walk my talk.


I am uncertain I want to be that vulnerable, that raw, that tender.

What if I give my heart to you and you hand it back to me, without comment.

Or worse, you look me over and say, “No thanks.”

What if I let this great rush of water take me, and I land on your doorstep, muddied, with sticks in my hair and half my clothes washed off?

What if you take one look at that hot mess and think, damn, I could do better than that.


What if you don’t?

What if you take one look and say, “It’s you. Migod. You’re here. You’re finally here.”


What I know about love.

It’s the honeyed-water of life.

It makes everything softer, lighter, and more open.

I also know it takes a courageous heart to even attempt to walk into its currents. It’s not for the faint-hearted or lily-livered or for those who like remaining stuck inside the life raft, wearing their orange vests.

If you open to love, you’ll get wet.  If you dive in, you’ll be soaked.

Love is messy; that’s what makes it a cake you want to bake. 

Love is thumping your head against the wall and waking your neighbors and starting all the nearby dogs barking. Love is bumping and grinding and falling apart afterward and thinking, God damn! What was that?

Who left my hair matted and my heart pumping and my toes curled?

Oh, yes.

You, love.  You.


Love is also quiet. Angry. Bored. Spiteful.

Love can be a troublesome little f*ck.

Often, it will stand on your last nerve, just for shits and giggles.

It will ask you for more than you ever thought you could possibly give.

Love is the ultimate self-improvement course. It is continuing-ed and life-long learning rolled into one. It is trial by fire and poop patrol and ‘I-can’t-believe-I-have-to-do-this’ spiritual practice.

Love is sacred surrender.

Love will shape you into a vessel that can withstand anything.

No matter how difficult your journey toward love is, it is something you do not want to miss.

It will forge a version of you that you could never become without it.

Risk it.

Risk your heart.

Risk everything and be glad.

I Could Never Be a Surface Lover


I can only go deep.

It seems that there is a current trend of forgoing deep meaningful relationships in an effort to protect myself from the pain of a possibly tragic break up. Maybe it’s because I am in my mid 30’s,  still single and this new collective vibe has caught my attention.

Whatever the case may be I am not a fan of this retreat to what appears to be safer waters in relationships. I hate to break it to you friends, but you can drown in two inches of water.

I have taken note of those in my sphere who have tried the shallow end of the dating pool, only to find that the pickings are slim, with small fish that end up becoming nothing more than a snack or small meal that has left them starving after empty hearted consumption.

For me, love is an issue of great depth and importance.

It is not something I can enter into lightly. I am well aware of the risks and the rewards and am still willing to live among the waves if its absence and presence as I wait. I have learned to love the still of this ocean as its currant supports me along with the sound of the quiet and the roar of the water.

A few years ago I was introduced to the song Cool Change by the Little River Band. It became an intricate part of my life. One of my favorite verses is:

“Well, I was born in the sign of water
and it is there that I feel my best.
the whale and the albatross are my brother. It’s kind of a special thing
When your out on the sea alone, staring at the moon, like a lover.”

It’s true that a life of solitude takes some getting used to, but the rewards have been exponential. I am comfortable in my own skin. I am happy even when alone with my own thoughts. I am no longer haunted by the storms of yesterday and the nights that made me question if I would see the light of day again.

I have found peace with myself and the ocean. The evening sky has truly become intricate part of my existence. It’s in these moments of quiet solitude that I have discovered the ability to be my own best friend. Encouraging, uplifting, and simply enjoying my own company has been a reward for all of the effort. It’s not easy to fall in love with yourself.  You have to get used to looking beyond the flaws to see the jewel that is the real you. If what I seek never appears, my years of the oceanic journey will not be in vain, I am not empty. I am filled with my own joy, self confidence, and peaceful happiness. These things are worth their weight in gold.

Burned Bridges: Is it Possible to Rebuild?

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There may be a person in your life that you just can’t shake – a person that is missed so much that whatever drove you apart sits on your back like a bag of bricks. Perhaps you’ve tried to set that bag down and leave it without unpacking the contents but  it’s still attached to your weight slumped shoulders from the burden of things left unsaid.

How do you go from no contact to tentative conversation?  It can be done with time, patience, compassion, and forgiveness.

  •   Admit you started the fire to burn the bridge: One of the hardest things is to admit to yourself when you’ve done somebody wrong. It’s easy to lay the blame at their feet because after all, they’re the ones that caused your anger and your release of the relationship in the first place. But sometimes that’s a lie we tell ourselves to keep from being responsible for our own actions. It’s a reflection of our not so shining moments.
  •   Build a new bridge: Reach out to the person via text, email, phone call, sky-writing, blog post or any other way to let them know you’re willing to speak with them. If the person is receptive, apologize for what you did or said wrong. Leave expectations on the floor because sometimes the wound you’ve caused can run so deeply that there may be rejection or disbelief of your intentions. Remember to not just speak the words but take action. You’re asking for a new relationship which means you’re approaching this not as the former person, but as you are right now.
  •  Compassion for yourself and the new relationship: The old wounds will be there. They may be scabbed over or even scarred, but they will be there. Realize that when you look at the other person with compassion in your heart, the scars fade after time.  It is as falling in love with that person’s current self and from this point you’ve come to in the realization that this relationship is worth it. History can’t be changed, only the here and now is important.
  •   Dissolve anger, pride, and resentment: Holding on to anger is that bag of bricks that weighs your spirit down. Realize that you reacted or acted in a very human manner. Your feelings of resentment  have no place in the new relationship you’re attempting to re-establish. The pride that kept you from making the reconnection before needs to find the humbleness of release. Feel the emotions, but don’t hold them. Allow them to dissipate.
  •   Evolve your view of the person: Are you the same person you were when you cut the relationship from your life?  The other person isn’t either. Meet her as if for the first time, because technically, you are. Get to know their current self because what you remember may (or truthfully, may not) be accurate. Anger changes the color of memories to murky depths instead of embracing the current vibrancy of now. This is a new day and a new relationship based on time passing. Let her be who she is now, not how you remember them.
  •   Forgive yourself and the other person: This one can prove difficult depending on the circumstances of the separation. By setting down your feelings from the past and allowing things to be as they are, forgiveness is not far behind. Forgiveness helps us to see things clearly again. It wipes the slate clean even if the faint outline of the transgression can still be seen, it’s no longer the focus of the relationship. The focus shifts to rebuilding instead of rehashing.
  •   Give love willingly: What if the person you’re reaching out to rejects your attempt at reconciliation? What if they don’t want anything to do with you or your efforts to rebuild? Love her anyway. Just because you’re ready to re-establish a relationship doesn’t mean she will be.  If she is willing, then don’t be afraid to let her get to know you as you are now. Your personal growth has brought you to a point where you realize the value of what you’ve been missing. Allow the vulnerability of love to fill in those parts, whether rejected or accepted. Love the other person. Love yourself. Let it be organically grown from your heart no matter their response.
  •   Healthy Communication: Be honest with yourself and the person you’re re-establishing a relationship with. Speak from your heart while listening to spirit. There is nothing more satisfying than accepting one another exactly as you are. You don’t have to be a allow yourself to communicate your own wants and needs. you’re establishing grounds of mutual respect. It builds trust, balance, and reinforces your sincerity.

Great things can take time to build or rebuild.  Although there is no guarantee that the other person will be receptive to your outreach, discovering that you can set down that bag of bricks is totally worth it.