Tuesday, September 4, 2012

"Verbal Abuse"

Psalm 141:3 Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; Keep watch over the door of my lips. 

Living in Christ is not easy, but it is possible. God did not promise that we would not face adversities in our walk in Christ however; He did promise that we would overcome those adversities. One of the biggest struggles I had to overcome was the emotional scars of verbal abuse. It was difficult and trying at times, but I knew I could not overcome my struggles in my own strength, so I had to call on JESUS. Verbal abuse is dangerous and just as harmful (if not more harmful) as a gun. Words are powerful and according to the word of God Proverbs 18:21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit. 

Verbal abuse enters the ear thus invading your thoughts and is communicated with your voice. Soon those things that are verbalized then are manifested in your actions and become your character. Verbal abuse is just as damaging as any other form of abuse. 

Verbal abuse does three things: 

(1) Leaves no physical evidence – Have you ever gotten so mad that your anger got the best of you and you lashed out verbally? You may have said some things you did not mean. Or perhaps you meant what you said but would have preferred not to communicate in that way. I’ve been there! Or how about have you ever been the target for someone lashing out at you? I’ve been there too! Those words said may not have left a mark anywhere on your body. There were not any bruises, black eyes or broken bones. In fact, verbal abuse can sometimes be hard to prove, hard to believe and hard to find the cause/sources of (in some cases). There is no evidence at the scene of the crime. However, words are like small seeds, and when thrown into the atmosphere depending on the ground they land on, those seeds will grow. Harmful words are seeds grow that can grow into insecurities, feelings of inadequacy, hate, pride and resentment. These emotions are not always evident. Some people may wear their emotions on their sleeve whereas others carefully conceal their emotions. Either way, harmful emotions are painful to bear. 

(2) Assassinates – Verbal abuse can contaminate your character or someone else’s character. For example: Verbal abuse can contaminate a child’s spirit and delay the child from maximizing his/her potential. If a child grows up in a home where the parent(s) are always highlighting a child's failures and embarrassing the child, the child may grow up insecure and afraid to try new things – limiting him/her from branching out and experiencing the fullness of life.

A form of verbal abuse is gossip! Gossip will destroy/kill someone’s reputation. Gossip can taint a person’s character. It takes a lifetime to build a good name and only a second to destroy it. The worst thing about gossip is it is difficult to trace. A lie does not care who tells it. 

(3) Contagious – Verbal abuse is contagious! How do you know what a curse word is? How do you know how to curse? My guess is your heard it somewhere. Of all the things we pick up along the way, somehow we never seem to forget how to curse or gossip. Now for those of you who do not have a cursing problem, verbal abuse is any language that is not edifying your brother or sister in Christ. Verbal abuse could include always saying negative things about a new project, new idea, or new person. “I don’t know who she thinks she is, she isn’t the boss”, or “Girl, let me tell you about the –insert favorite reality show here- she remind me of –insert person you know here-”. Verbal abuse also includes any phrases/words perpetuating stereotypes of any ethnic race. I’ve heard the term “CP time” and it is not a positive term, yet I’m guilty of using it. So now that we are clear that verbal abuse is not just about cursing, and it is about any language that cannot be used to glorify God and His kingdom. It is important to know verbal abuse in contagious. I mentioned earlier that harmful words are like seeds. Well, those seeds are watered by the world and eventually those seeds manifest into full grown strongholds. The strongholds can and usually do produce seeds of its own. Someone once told me hurt people hurt people. Those who are wounded by verbal abuse usually tend to wound others. 

So now that we are aware of verbal abuse how can we change it, what can we do about it. Well, my prayer sister, Sheika once gave me a scripture Psalm 141:3 to meditate on which has helped me a lot. It is important to continue to develop your relationship with God, because the truth is, no man can control his own tongue; James 3:8 but no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. You need the divine power of the Holy Spirit to help you. As I travel this journey in Christ, I have to constantly be mindful of the words that I speak. I encourage you all to do the same.

--Demo, Team TT


“Be still and know that I am God” Psalm 46:10 

Anyone else out there really enjoy waiting for things to happen (retorical question)?  I mean things that seem so farfetched that everyone looks at you crazy when you talk about it… Well I’m in a season of “waiting” and surprisingly instead of being annoyed or frustrated about it, I’m actually content and at peace. Usually I’m impatient; I don’t like waiting for things to happen I always jump the gun and go for it! I’ve learned my lesson, and in this season I’m waiting like my Father told me to. I’ve finally learned after the 1500th time that, God’s timing is way better than mines! You see in the past He told me to be still and just wait, and instead I went on ahead and did what I wanted because it “felt right” and it ended in a complete disaster! This appears to especially happen in the relationship zone! I’m hard headed when it comes to following His direction in relationships and I think I know what’s best for me. Boy do I prove myself wrong every time! He warned me in His WORD to not awaken love until the time is right (Song of Songs 2:7 NLT) At this point in my life, I’m tired of shattered relationships and hearts being broken, because of my disobedience and lack of trust. Instead of rushing God’s plans for my life, I’ll let Him prepare me for what’s to come so that when the wait is over and the time is right… I’ll be ready

Outfit details: scarf and pants-thrifted, top and shoes-Marshalls (Photography by Bobby Perkins) 

If He tells you to wait --- be still and know that He’s God, and just wait

-Dom, TeamTT 

“Urban Turban: Picture Tutorial”

Outfit details: scarf- Target; vest, pants, accessories thrifted; top- Marshalls; Shoes- TJ Maxx; Shades-Ray Ban (Photography by Bobby Perkins)

Anytime I wear my turban I get lots of compliments and people always ask me how I did it. So I decided I’d do something different and post a picture tutorial of how I do the infamous “Urban Turban”

Step 1. If your hair is long and you don’t want to wear it down, you can wrap it up and put a scarf on like I did in the photo.

Step 2. Get you a regular sized scarf and hold it out with both hands. (this scarf was purchased from TJ Maxx)

Step 3. Put the scarf on your head start from the back and bring the two ends together forward towards the top of your forehead.

Step 4. Start twisting the scarf together tightly.

Step 5. Twist into knot tightly.

Step 6. Take the ends and tuck it under so that they’re hidden.

Step 7. Enjoy your Urban Turban!!!

-Dom, TeamTT

"Fruits to Persevere"

When I think of my journey as a young adult up to this point, it seemed as if I went through more hell saved than while in the world. The fact of the matter is the hell I went through wasn’t necessarily the enemy’s doing most times; In fact, it was due to my repetitive, total disobedience to God. I was extremely hardheaded and had to have control. I was ignorant to the fact that my Savior was simply trying to save me from Me. He had soooo much better for me but I wanted to live in filth. I was bound mentally and fleshly for a very long time, not producing any fruit, while preparing my place in hell.

I am so grateful that the blood of Jesus covers over a multitude of sins. I appreciate the nine years of bondage because it taught me how to surrender and persevere through the Word of God. This is for the stubborn and hard headed individuals who are still trying to control their lives OUT SIDE OF THE WILL OF GOD….. Yes, I am talking to you. Hebrews 10: 26-31 “if WE deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sin is left, but the fearful expectation of judgment and raging fire that will consume the enemies of God…..How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace?” Stop playing with God before you run out of repentance and learn how to preserve. 

How do we preserve? Perseverance comes through the meditation of the Word of God (Psalm 119). Being persistent in this along with fasting and prayer will produce good fruit. “But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers.” (Psalm 1:1-3) The Word of God keeps us hydrated and nourished. So, the more we eat, the more we produce. Since I’ve submitted my heart over to God, I am producing better fruit. I’ve grown to be sincere in my obedience and how to truly put this flesh under submission (Romans 8). 

There are a ton of scriptures I could use to elaborate this in greater detail, but in the mean time let's talk about my fruitfully thrifted outfit. My entire outfit (besides the shoes) is thrifted. My earrings are thrifted from the Neighborhood Thrift Store in Huntsville, Al. My dress and belt are thrifted from the Downtown Rescue Mission Thrift Store in Huntsville, Al. My blouse was picked up from a clothing drive. My shoes are Gianni Bini (my best bud Lac picked these out) purchased from Dillards. 

I have no thrifty tip today. Instead I would like to encourage you to do the following: release whomever or whatever is causing your supply to the living Word of God to be cut off; meditate on the Word of God DAILY; understand that God only has the best for you because He is; stop using this stupid excuse to sin, “God knows my heart”; learn to fast, pray, and listen; and ask God for a heart to seek after Him solely. Jesus loves you and only has His best just for you.

There is no such thing as living as the world and living for/ loving  God....NONE.  I can’t afford to make the same mistakes, living in the same sin that the blood of Jesus has covered, neither can you.

-Sheika, Team TT

Thrifty Travels Presents: Bargain Thrifting!!!!!

America’s Best Thrift Store
5441 U.S. 90 
Mobile, AL 36619
(251) 776-7171

If you guys didn’t know, Mobile, AL is like my second home! Besides coming home, I love to thrift here. There are a variety of LOW priced thrift stores around town that I enjoy shopping in. Let me tell you about this thrift store. I absolutely enjoyed it! Everything I purchased was discounted additional to the already LOW prices compared to other thrift stores. The store is massive and clean. It is very well organized. I had no problem searching for various items and it seemed that had everything including pet supplies! Although I enjoyed this store, there were two vital things that I wished it had: a fitting room and a mirror. But this store didn’t know who it was messing with. It still went down in a real way. I tried on all my clothes in a corner of the store by dressing tops and dresses over a comfortable t-shirt I wore; and I even tried on skirts under a long skirt I already had on. Yes, I was appropriate at all times and I had a "side kick look out" with me who took pictures of each piece I tried out. 

Let this be my thrifty tip of the day: Whenever you go thrifting always try to dress comfortable in an appropriate length skirt or a casual dress with tights. It may be helpful to take a buddy along to take pictures and to keep a look of while you’re changing. 

-Sheika, Team TT