Thankful Thursdays!

Each day there are so many things that if taken the time, we can find to be thankful for. On Thursday, our readers share and we highlight those things that we are most thankful for, that inspire us, and build and shape our lives. This day and everyday, we are thankful.

Thankful Thursdays!

BrotherWord - Dreams Come True

As kids we have a pure innocence that knows no boundaries and our dreams are as large and as magnanimous as our imagination can take us.  As we grow older and experience life more, we become jaded and lose that virtue, become cynical, and our dreams are not as vivid as they once were.  I am so THANKFUL that the world does not dictate the outcome of our dreams and if we are courageous enough to forge ahead in spite of all or any obstacles, our dreams can still come true.

I am very THANKFUL that dreams never die.  They may become dormant or even forgotten, and in worse cases, given up on, but that precious dream still lies within and is just waiting to be stirred up, shaken awake, and pursued again.  Life will take you on many twists and turns, derailing your thoughts, detouring your focus, and dividing your time, but is it not amazing how one glimmer of hope, one leap of faith, can redirect you and put you right on course to achieving your deepest desires and wildest dreams!

What is a real miracle is how even when you may quit on your dream, it never quit on you and when least expected, that dream that you no longer thought of, considered a possibility, or even fathom any longer has now come to fruition.  THANKFUL for dreams beyond reality and greater than doubt and fear.  THANKFUL for the little kid in me who still remembers that anything I believe, if I so desire and am willing to put in the work, I can achieve it!

THANKFUL that dreams are windows to our heart’s desires, our mind’s infatuations, and our soul’s purpose-filled destiny.  THANKFUL that our greatest dreams somehow formulate a blueprint and road that lead to our greatest joy. Dream on my friend…

“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.” ~ Harriet Tubman

“Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.” ~ Langston Hughes

Thankful Thursdays!

BrotherWord - Thankful Thursday

Life has an uncanny way of reminding us of who we are and what we are capable of and I am so THANKFUL for that redeeming factor!  At that pivotal moment when all seems lost, despair begins to set in, and we start losing hope, there is a primordial instinct that takes over and it becomes a difference between fight or flight!

THANKFUL that I have not been born with a spirit of fear and neither have you!  Things will happen that will make us question our very fiber and ultimate purpose, but there are so many more factors that remind us of who we are and why we were created.  Just when we thought we had completely lost ourselves, some redeeming occurrence jolts us back to reality and shows us that we were never truly lost, merely on hiatus.   (more…)

Thankful Thursday – Dear New Orleans

BrotherWord - Katrina

I am THANKFUL for the city that birth me, raised me, and made me who I am, the place I call home;

The one they turned their back on, tried to forget and let wash away with the storm, but 10 years later, we still standing strong! ~ BrotherWord

Everyone remembers what happened in New Orleans and the Gulf Coast area 10 years ago when Hurricane Katrina made landfall and as tragic as it was, as a proud New Orleanian, I am very THANKFUL to say we are still standing.  So many people counted us out and gave up on us, but we never quit on ourselves or our city.

It is a different city with many transplants that came from far and wide to help when we needed it most, but one thing that was never lost was the soul and essence that makes New Orleans what it is and attracts people from all around the world.  It is something that is hard to describe and even harder to pinpoint, yet undeniable and unforgettable.  New Orleans is a city that is rich in history, culture, cuisine, and most importantly, amazing people that will make a stranger feel like they are part of the family.  You can live in any city, but New Orleans is the only city that lives in you!

As we approach the anniversary of one of the most horrific events in American history, take a moment to remember what we endured and also how the country responded.  What happened is a tragedy, but if we do not learn any lessons, make provisions to never be unprepared, or allow this to happen again, that would be the real tragedy.  Katrina is etched in stone and the annuls of history, but it is one history lesson that does not need to be repeated.

10 years later we stand rebuilt, rejuvenated, and rejoicing.  The waters cleansed the city, but it did not destroy the soul.  So as we look back on what happened and continue to build for tomorrow, know that New Orleans has and will continue to live on… live on in the hearts of many who have been transplanted throughout the country, lives on in the dedication of those who returned and continue the rebuilding efforts, and through the blessing of all who came to our beloved city to lend a hand and show they cared and had not forgotten the Crescent City.

Les Bon Temps Rouler – Let the Good Times Roll – and roll on they shall as we continue to blow our trumpets, second line through the streets, make the finest beignets, and party like only New Orleans can!  What did not kill us has made us stronger and we do not plan on quitting now!  On today and every year as the anniversary of Katrina approaches, I am eternally THANKFUL I still have a home to go home to and my beloved city is still standing.

Thankful Thursdays

BrotherWord - Lose Your Soul

I am THANKFUL for the stars, no not the ones in the sky, but the ones on the radio and small and big screens who continue to show out;

Because of you I’ve come to realize that being rich has nothing to do with fame, money, or clout.

See I watch you degrade yourselves, belittle each other, and pretend to make ratchet seem cool;

But at the end of the day, everyone laughing at you, not with you, dragging your name through the mud, and looking at you sideways because you decided to play the fool.

For what though?  A little notoriety, a few more coins, to become a household name?

Well baby if that’s how the “other side” lives, if that is what it takes to be in the “inner circle,” I’m just fine in my own lane.

I refuse to allow someone else to define me or determine my worth;

I’m a child of the Most High and what He blessed me with is way more important than 15 minutes in the spotlight on the earth.

I am THANKFUL  that being humbled didn’t take my life but instead put me on the right path;

Even when I lost it all and was at my lowest, I still realize that what I have now is far greater than what I ever had.

I am THANKFUL that whatever did not kill me has truly made me stronger;

THANKFUL that I am not consumed by keeping up with the Joneses or trying to impress the Smiths, and the things that used to move me, just don’t any longer.

So THANK you for showing that fame and fortune is not all it’s cracked up to be if it means losing your soul;

I’d rather play the background, enjoy the journey, and count my blessings while remaining in control.

Not worried about likes on social media, plugs on the radio, or a Nielsen rating;

Instead I am THANKFUL because of you I am not the one being dictated to or exploited, but the one who is creating.

Thankful Thursdays

BrotherWord - Thankful Thursdays

With so much going on in the world, it is hard to find things to be THANKFUL for or show gratitude towards.  The world, if you let it, will beat you down and tear you apart and test you at every turn and if you succumb to the doom and gloom, it will literally destroy you from the inside out.

Today, I am THANKFUL for the doom and gloom because after the clouds clear away, the sun shines and the rainbows appear.  It is said, “Everyone wants happiness, but no one wants the pain.  But you cannot have a rainbow, without a little rain.”  No matter what is happening in your life it boils to a mindset of it is not what you go through, but how you go through it.  So THANKFUL that the years have taught me to smile during the storm, praise through the pain, and rejoice in the eye of rejection.  The sooner you accept that what is done is done and start working toward a resolution, the sooner the darkness will be lifted.

THANKFUL that pain is a reminder that I am still living and if I am still living that means I have a fighter’s chance to overcome and still prevail.  So THANKFUL that I was taught at an early age that in order to win in life, you have to work.  Everyone cannot win, but everyone can learn an invaluable lesson.  You will not always be victorious in every endeavor in life, but you can still win the battle if you are willing to bravely face any enemy that arises.

And do not fret over mistakes and failures; they are character builders.  There will come a time when being strong is the only thing you have left.  I am THANKFUL for the times I have fallen because it taught me how to pick myself up, how to dust myself off, and how to carry on.  Your best teacher is your last mistake!

Today, I am THANKFUL that anything that did not kill me, made me stronger and whatever has not broken me, has molded me.  THANKFUL that until my last breath, I have another chance to better my life and so do you.  THANKFUL is an intentional mindset and if you realize that life is about tests and just like the seasons, the climate will change and the sun will rise again.

“When I look back on my life, I see pain, mistakes, and heartache.  When I look in the mirror, I see strength, learned lessons, and pride in myself.” ~ Anonymous

Thankful Thursdays!

BrotherWord - Thankful

I’m THANKFUL for the son that rose to give me a brighter day,

For allowing the sun to set on what wasn’t for me so I go on my way.

I’m THANKFUL for the cross he carried for me and the burdens He bared,

For giving me parents that not only have structure and discipline, but genuinely cared.

I’m THANKFUL for my angels in heaven and here on earth,

For the ones who’ve recently entered my life and the ones that have protected me since birth.

I’m THANKFUL for the seasons of love and the moments of hurt,

Through gain and loss, trials and tribulations, I’ve discovered my worth.

I’m THANKFUL for pain, struggle, and defeat,

It was the only way I learned to pull myself up an get back on my feet.

I’m THANKFUL for those that left a mark, good or bad,

Without that experience I wouldn’t be able to truly appreciate all that I have.

I’m THANKFUL that life never promised to be easy or fair,

But always provided a way to rise above the deepest despair.

I’m THANKFUL for another day, another chance, another opportunity,
Life is too short to wait, to swift to delay;

I’m THANKFUL for my matriarch who led the charge and showed me the way,

She taught me as long as you follow God’s will, you’ll never be led astray.

I’m THANKFUL for those that questioned how I would or if I should,

They fueled the fire that gave me the strength and courage to know I could.

I’m THANKFUL for a sister’s love that surpassed any other example,

She is why I do what I do, my purpose personified, and her spirit I sample.

I’m THANKFUL for those that trust and believe I can be a source to better their lives,

The truth is, it’s already in you, we just have to work together to reach your ultimate prize.

I’m THANKFUL for this day and to be able to express my gratitude and appreciation,

I’ve learned that life is not about what you see, but how you see it and that’s my greatest realization.

Thankful Thursdays!

BrotherWord - Thankful

1 Thessalonians 5:18 (NLT) – Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.

It is hard to be THANKFUL when the very fabric of civilization, decency, and common respect for human life is being torn apart day by day.  In this month alone we have witnessed the worse of humanity from police brutalizing minors to a massacre at a church.  It is no way to properly explain or even begin to rationalize these horrendous events.  I can only imagine the long-term trauma this may cause and the immediate ramifications, but even through it all, I remain THANKFUL.   (more…)

Thankful Thursdays!

BrotherWord - I Am Thankful

As I have watched events unfold this week I cannot help but be THANKFUL for God’s continued grace and mercy.  I am far from perfect or and have made plenty of mistakes and poor choices and yet here I am.  Death has come a knocking once again this week, taking loved ones from the tender age of six to those were afforded a bigger bite at life and transcend at eighty. One thing is for sure, neither one of their lives were in vain and the impact they made on others is far-reaching.  I am so THANKFUL for them being a part of my life and more importantly showing me the importance of truly living life.

It is said that grace is what we do not deserve nor could earn in any way.  It is not by something we did, something we deserved, or something we have any right to, but God saw fit to grant us grace.  Mercy on the other hand is what we do not get that we definitely earned and deserve.  In the same breath, thought, and action,  God gives the one (grace) and withholds the other (mercy) and I for one am so THANKFUL for His goodness.  I shutter to think where I would be without either and who I would be if not given the chance to repent for my wrongs and rectify my failures.

Today I am THANKFUL because unlike those whose assignment is complete, I have another opportunity to pass the test and complete the work that has been purposed for my life.  I am THANKFUL because I am not where I want to be, but I am far from where I was and I am excited about where I am heading.  I am THANKFUL because someone saw fit to give me another chance, to forgive me for my transgressions, and to help when I fell, and to support me along the way.  I am THANKFUL because I did not receive the penalties of my sins or inherit debts I could never repay.  I am THANKFUL for unwarranted, unmerited, undeserving, unrealistic, and unwavering grace and mercy.  I am THANKFUL because He loved me in spite of me!

BrotherWord - Grace

A thousand times I’ve failed still your mercy remains.  And should I stumble again, I’m caught in your grace.

God’s grace is immeasurable.  His mercy inexhaustible.  His peace inexpressible.

Thankful Thursdays!

BrotherWord - Thankful

There will be circumstances in life where there seems nothing is going right and no matter how much you try, you just cannot get a break.  But in all circumstances, still give thanks.  As hard as that may seem, even in the most dire of situations, there is still a silver lining.  Even if that silver lining is realizing that as long as you have breath in your body there is still a chance, that in itself is more than enough to be THANKFUL for.

Take life for what it is worth.  Do not put more on any situation than warranted and think less of things that require more attention.  Be THANKFUL for every bump and twist and every blessing.  What happens in life is less important than how you go through life.  THANKFUL is a mentality based on trust and understanding that everything we go through is temporary.

As the song reminds us, “It’ll be all over in the morning.”  Midnight, the darkest hour when hope is lost, despair sets in, and the outcome is bleak only lasts for a moment.  Matter of fact, midnight is all of 60 seconds and when that clock strikes 12:01am, midnight is over and now it is morning, a new day and new hope.  I am so THANKFUL for the morning, when life resets and, God willing, we all have a chance to try again.  Can you hold on for 60 seconds?  Be THANKFUL for it all because in every circumstance there is still hope and if you can hold on there will be another opportunity.

 

Thankful Thursdays!

BrotherWord - Thankful Thursday!

“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” ~ Ghandi

There is so much to be THANKFUL for and each day presents another chance to show appreciation, but nothing beats serving others and pouring into another person’s life.  Over the past few weeks I have been afforded the opportunity to share my life’s story and testimony and prayerfully, a word or two that made a positive impact.  It is one thing to speak before a crowd of people, but completely different to captivate their minds and hearts.

I am so THANKFUL for the blessing to be able to teach others, to give tools to combat anything that may plaque one’s spirit, and to share words that are life-changing and give a sense of peace and comfort.  It is a responsibility I do not take lightly or take for granted and one that is as transformative for me as it is for anyone I may encounter.  I am THANKFUL for being stretched beyond anything I imagined and above whatever I foresaw.  I am THANKFUL that instead of running from my purpose, I am now embracing it and growing because of it.  I am so THANKFUL that what I once thought was my path has blossomed into a garden I could not have planted on my own.  Robert Louis Stevenson is quoted as saying, “Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant,” and I am eternally THANKFUL for being allowed to plant good seeds and good soil.

I am THANKFUL that who I am and what I do makes a difference in ways that transcend time and has a value that you cannot put a price on.  I am THANKFUL for those that have poured into me and continue to walk alongside me during this journey.  But above all, I am THANKFUL for the smiles of revelation, the tears of breakthrough, and a quiet peace that surpasses heartache, disappointment, misunderstanding, rejection, or any past disappointments.  I am THANKFUL for discovery!

THANK YOU to BrotherWord’s Shining Stars in the picture below, many of which who will be graduating this month and continuing their education at colleges throughout the country.  THANK YOU for trusting me and believing in me as much as I believe in you.  THANK YOU to all who who tuned in, called in, and listened intently as we declared victory over our lives and remembered all that we have to be THANKFUL for despite what the world says.  I am THANKFUL for being able to serve and I THANK YOU for giving me that chance.

BrotherWord Shining Stars

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