Thursday, November 21, 2002

Subject: God's Voice Mail

Most of us have now learned to live with voice mail as a necessary part of our lives. Have you ever wondered what it would be like if God decided to install voice mail? Imagine praying and hearing the following:

Thank you for calling heaven.
For English press 1
For Spanish press 2
For all other languages, press 3

Please select one of the following options:
Press 1 for request
Press 2 for thanksgiving
Press 3 for complaints
Press 4 for all others

I am sorry, all our Angels and Saints are busy helping other sinners right now. However, your prayer is important to us and we will answer it in the order it was received. Please stay on the line.

If you would like to speak to:
God, press 1
Jesus, press 2
Holy spirit, press 3
To find a loved one that has been assigned to heaven press 5, then enter his social security # followed by the pound sign. (If you receive a negative response, please hang up and dial area code 666)

For reservations to heaven, please enter JOHN followed by the numbers, 316.

For answers to nagging questions about dinosaurs, life and other planets, please wait until you arrive in heaven for the specifics.

Our computers show that you have already been prayed for today, please hang up and call again tomorrow.

The office is now closed for the weekend to observe a religious holiday.

If you are calling after hours and need emergency assistance, please contact your local pastor.

Thank you and have a heavenly day.

Tuesday, November 19, 2002

I have been informed that I am formally listed on Google. I'm popular by association. I checked Google and I did find myself. When I searched by my first name I found A LOT of sites with Ayaba on them somewhere. More than a handful were foreign. I didn't find myself with my blog though. I'll keep searching. If you find it...let me know.
OK...I've been a little busy this past weekend to update the blog. Please forgive me. So here's the recap...

Friday - Party, Party, Party
As I said previously, it was Mia's birthday. We had a party for her at her school (Mommy's first time making sweets for the kids). The kids got cake, ice cream, rice krispies treats and brownie bites. Not to mention the treat bags I made for them to take home. Mia loved it and had a BLAST!! Plus with all the sugar these kids put away it was the perfect excuse for them to then go play in the "Bikes and Slides" area. Mia's grandparents came and we all had a good time all-around. The best part - not having to clean my house!! We went back to her father's house to open gifts. She got mostly books, a Dora the Explorer "We Did It" dancing doll, an art set and a...MAGIC SET. Mia is constantly making up her own magic tricks. Her dad and I figured we would help her out with some props.

Friday night we took Mia to dinner at Dave and Busters. She loves this place. She gets to eat and race cars and trucks and snowmobiles and motorcycles. (Did I mention she's a lot like her father - a speed demon?) Anywho, she had her favorite dinner (chicken and french fries) as did mommy (steak and potatoes). Plus the magician was there. He came by and did tricks and made balloon animals. Then the waitstaff came out and sang Happy Birthday to her. Through all this do you know what she said..."Can we go play games now?" Again, she is her father's child. She got to play every game that she asked to...except shoot 'em ups...too much violence! We didn't get back to her dad's house until 11:30 pm and she was immediately tucked and fast asleep.

Saturday - More Party, Party, Party
Mia is extremely blessed. She has 5 great-grandparents. Well her GG Forney turned 80 on Thursday (11/14) and there was a party for her on Saturday. The party was from 1 to 4 pm. What time did we get there? 4 pm. I was with someone who is terminally late. I think he's incurable. I know that I slept in until 1:30 pm. I had some extremely late nights at work. So when I asked what time it was and got 1:30 pm of course imagine my shock!! The next question...why did you let me sleep so late when we are supposed to be somewhere at 1:00 pm? No clear cut answer. I knew we were in trouble. Hopped out of bed and got Mia and myself ready only to find the offender has decided to take a nap (at 1:30!?!?!?). Needless to say, we were late. But I think I mentioned that already. The party was nice and it's always a good time with family and friends.

Saturday night we treated Mia to a surprise...the Harry Potter Movie! She couldn't guess what it was until we got to the movie theater and I told her we would be seeing a movie about a boy with a broomstick and we saw it last year - out pops Harry Potter?. It was a treat for us as well...we went to the new AMC River East 21 on Illinois Street...VERY NICE!!! 21 screens and validated parking ($6). Plus since it just opened, small popcorn was 25¢. You get to put on your own butter and salt...I was in popcorn heaven. The movie was good. I liked was true to the book but a lot darker than the first movie. Mia liked it too...there were a couple of scary moments but she knows that it's just acting. On the way home we noticed that it was starting to snow. Home by 11:30 pm again...two late nights in a row!

Sunday - This is the day the Lord has made, be glad and rejoice in it!
I go to church every Sunday unless there is some extenuating circumstance (aka illness). I have to be there by 9:00 am for Sunday School and I pick up my grandmother on the way. After two late nights I did NOT want to get up...but I did. Well imagine my surprise when I got to my car and saw not only had it snowed...IT STUCK!! I had to clean off my car without the proper equipment. Anyway, I got to my grandmother's house knowing she would be waiting on me and she wasn't even dressed. Needless to say I was late for Sunday School...luckily I have competent teachers who start without me. Church was great...and there was a choir concert that afternoon. The concert was wonderful!! I love to hear the choir really moves my spirit. Unfortunately I cannot sing so you will not see me joining the choir anytime soon. It doesn't stop me from singing in my secure seat on the pew however...that and a lot of clapping and toe-tapping. It was a great event...I can't wait until they do it again in the Spring (hint, hint!!).

After church, Mia and I got the my house and crashed. It had been a long day and even longer weekend!

Friday, November 15, 2002

I've been reading my friend Carlos's (my gero) blog and he is having some interesting life changes. I want to say that I'm proud and the fact that he is willing to share these changes with his friends and family is even better.
Today is my daughter's birthday. She is officially four since she was born at 2:26 am. Thank you Consuelo for your story about that stupid dog that made me laugh so hard I dilated from 4 to 8 cm in 25 minutes. No drugs for me. Natural whether I wanted it or not. Four years later I can say that I would go through it again. I have this beautiful little girl that I adore. She is spoiled rotten by love and I wouldn't have it any other way. It's also my mom's birthday. As I said to her then when she looked at her granddaughter....Happy Birthday forever. Besides she's only 50. (smile)

Thursday, November 14, 2002

I think I'm the only one that reads my depressing. :(

Tuesday, November 12, 2002

Just a side's my mother's and my daughter's birthday on Friday...yes they were both born on the same day. A few years apart mind you but the same day. My mom is turning 50...what should I get her? All suggestions are welcome. Muchas!
I sent a friend the following and she asked me if it had changed the way that I thought about relationships. I don't know that it changed the way I thought about relationships it more or less re-affirmed some things I had been thinking about period. Let me know what you think. Yes it's a long one...

1 Corinthians 6:18-20 & 1 Corinthians 7:1-2

"Flee fornication. Every sin that a man doeth is without the body; but he that committeth fornication sinneth against his own body. What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's. Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman. Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband."

The dictionary meaning of the word "fornication" means any unlawful sexual intercourse including adultery. In the Bible the Greek definition of the word "fornication" means to commit illicit sexual intercourse. What constitutes unlawful sex? Whose laws do we live by? Worldly standards or laws many times do not always line up with the Word of God. The founding fathers of the United States established many laws that were originally based on Christian standards and the laws of the Bible. However, through time the United States has drifted far from these standards and at the present our moral standards are shocking the world. However, immorality is not only found in the U.S. but is a world-wide epidemic. Societies throughout history and around the globe have embraced sexual standards that are called sins in the Bible.

Fornication is not just tolerated in our society but is actually being encouraged. The sin of fornication is being committed even among Christians, as many couples "live together" and have sex before marriage. The Bible tells us to flee this sin. We have counseled Christians of the opposite sex who share an apartment and they told us they were not having sex so this surely wasn't wrong. The Bible declares these words in 1 Thessalonians 5:22-23: "Abstain from all appearance of evil. And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ."

Our lives as Christians are a living witness to others and we cannot break the laws of God without hindering others from coming to Christ. We must live our lives in purity before a sinful and wicked world. We should not be living according to their standards but according to God's standard in the Bible. No couple should live together outside the bonds of marriage.

Many say they live together before marriage to see if they are compatible as they don't want to divorce. This may sound like a justifiable reason for committing the sin of fornication, but in God's eyes it is still sin. Statistics however, show that those who live together before marriage are more likely to get a divorce than those who do not. Living together shows a total lack of trust in God and a failure to commit to Him the choosing of a mate. Christians who are living in this situation are out of the will of God and need to repent and seek God as to whether this person is the right one for them. If it is God's will for them to be together they should marry. Otherwise, they need to change their living arrangements.

As Christians, the goal of any relationship should be to cause the people in our lives to love and know the Lord better. Living together is shameful and selfish as the parties do not care what others think or how they might affect their families and others. They are living to please their own lust and selfish desires. This type of life style is destructive and especially so for children whose parents are living a bad example before them. No wonder our children are confused about right and wrong when parents degrade the sanctity of marriage by living together out of wedlock. How can living together cause children to love and honor God when their parents break the laws of God before them because they are lustful?

Young people today need to be taught to abstain from sexual intercourse and remain pure virgins before marriage. So many problems in marriages today stem from the fact that they are not virgins when they marry. Young people are bringing wounded emotions and diseased bodies into their marriages because of prior promiscuous affairs. STDs (Sexually Transmitted Diseases) are so widespread that the statistics are shocking. There are 12 million new cases of STDs annually in the United States and 67% of these occur among persons under the age of 25. In fact, every year one out of six teens contracts an STD. 100,000 to 150,000 women become infertile each year as a result of STDs.¹ Others endure years of pain as some of these diseases are incurable. What a tragic price to pay for sexual sins. The Bible is right when it says fornication is a sin against one's own body.

The sin of fornication is not only defined as illicit sexual intercourse between those who are not married but also is an umbrella for other sexual sins as well. The Bible also speaks of the sin of incest as fornication in 1 Corinthians 5:1: "It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father's wife."

The Bible also lists whoremongers as fornicators in Revelation 21:8: But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.

All prostitutes and pimps are fornicators. Couples who just "live together" according to the Bible, are committing the same sin that whores commit. Singles who "make love" fall into the same category. Just because society has accepted this type of living does not make it right. The Bible must be our standard of what is right and wrong. We must change our standards if we do not want the wrath of God to fall on us. God hates sin but He loves the sinner. If anyone repents and calls on Jesus today He will help them to come out of any illicit relationship and heal them of all past hurts and even heal any disease that they may have contracted.

God gave us the laws in the Bible for our good. They are not meant to deny us any good thing but they are given so we can enjoy the proper sexual relationship in the proper time. If we obey the words of the Bible and "flee fornication" and glorify God in our bodies, the Lord will bless us beyond what we could believe.

Psalm 145:17-21: "The LORD is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works. The LORD is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth. He will fulfil the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them. The LORD preserveth all them that love him: but all the wicked will he destroy. My mouth shall speak the praise of the LORD: and let all flesh bless his holy name for ever and ever."
I sent the following message to some was pretty powerful so I'm sharing it here. Let me know what you think
I don't know if you all are ready for this, but this is the real deal. The is raw and uncut, NO CHASER! The WORD of GOD is a two-edged sword. With that, some of us may be bleeding after this. It is long, but every word is powerful. Please read to the end. Be blessed

This is good reading material even if you are married or not. Turn in your Bible to Psalm 65:4 (the New King James Bible). It says, Blessed is the man you choose and causes to approach you. That he may dwell in your courts and shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house.

Pastor T.D. Jakes made a statement once that was morbid but SO true! He said that when choosing a mate, you need to ask yourself whether or not that person is the one you would want to hold your hand as you are lowering your parents' bodies into the grave for the last time. That is serious. Meditate on that for a few seconds. Your entire perspective in terms of what you are searching for in a mate should be based on that one question. Are you dating?

Think about your boy/girlfriend. Is he (she)seriously the one you would want holding your hands during the darkest hours of your life? Look even deeper. Is your present boy/girlfriend the type who would offer you assistance during the time of grief? Unbelievably, there are numerous men (women) out here who offer absolutely NO comfort to hurting women (men).And no, it does not matter whether they are married to those women (men) or not! I wish you could see some of the personal letters this site receives from married people. Yes, some of them are happy, praise God! However, the ones who are not happy are miserable. There are no in between. Either you are happy in a marriage or you are not. There are married women (men) writing saying their husbands (wives) never show authentic affection towards them, never offer expressions of love for them. That is real.

Because it is so real, God desires that women (men) are exceptionally careful when choosing a mate. Notice I did not say that women should FIND a mate! I said, "Choose". There is a huge difference. Turn in your Bible to Proverbs 18:22. It says that He who finds a wife finds a good thing...Interpretation: MEN find women.Women should not be out trying to find a man! HOWEVER, once found, the woman can then choose to be with the man or to wait to be found by a different man.

Proverbs 20:6 states, Who can find a faithful man? The fact that the question is asked is indicative of the fact that there are not many faithful men out there. However, there is good news. The good news is that JESUS knows where the faithful men are! Webster's New Collegiate Dictionary offers several excellent definitions of the word faithful:

(a) Steadfast in affection or allegiance
(b) Loyal
(c) Firm in adherence to promises or in observance of duty
(d) Conscientious

The scriptures say that a faithful man is difficult to find. God is saying that it is hard to find a man (woman) with the qualities in letters a, b,c, and d. However, wouldn't you love to have a man (woman) with the qualities listed above? They are rare. But GOD knows where such men (women) are located.

Turn in your Bible to Ephesians 5:23. Scripture states, for the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word. That He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish.

STOP! Now go back and re-read that passage. God is offering us a blueprint on what to look for in a mate. Let's pick that scripture apart.

1. The husband is head of the wife. That means that you need to choose a man who is born-again. He also needs to be a man under whose authority you will feel comfortable submitting. It is dangerous to submit to the authority of a man who is not saved or who does not have a relationship with God.
2. The husband must love his wife as Christ loves the Church. That is a tough one! Look at the degree to which God loves His Church! He died for the Church (the entire body of Christ). How does God love us? He is kind, patient and nurturing to the Church. Those are the qualities you need to search for when determining who to marry.
3. The husband must sanctify, cleanse and wash his wife with the Word of God. Again, only a born-again man can wash you with the Word of God. Think about the dating ritual. Boy meets girl, they date, start to care deeply, and the subject of sex pops up. Question: HOW will the man handle it? God says that it is the responsibility of the man to see to it that he presents a woman clean and holy. If he is fornicating with her, how can he present her as clean and holy? Sex outside the marriage bond is dirty. Therefore, if you find yourself with a man trying to fornicate with you, you have the wrong man. God says that He presents the Church (His Bride!) without spot, wrinkle or blemish. Your future husband must present you at the altar without spot, wrinkle or blemish. Furthermore, even if you become weak and want to fornicate, he must be able to WASH you with God's Word. He is responsible for you! This is important. Please listen so that you don't end up miserable.

In Ephesians, 5:31 the scripture states that, For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh. This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church...God hates divorce. However, He also hates abuse. God does not want you physically or mentally abused. He certainly does not want you disrespected by a man (woman) committing adultery against you. Too many women (men) in this country, in their quest for a mate are settling with people who are not worthy of them. The reason so many people are in unhappy marriages is that they latched onto the wrong person to please society, family or friends. Now they are stuck with a mean, unaffectionate, or abusive mate.

It is not too late for you. If you pick the right mate from the beginning, you will not end up hurt and miserable (divorced). Listen carefully, GOD says that when you marry, you become ONE with that person. God no longer sees you as separate, but He sees you and your mate as ONE person. We cannot fully comprehend it because God says it's a great mystery! Think about your boy/girlfriend. Do you see yourself becoming ONE with them? If you have problems after marriage it's because something was broken before marriage (that was obviously ignored). If you do not have a boy/girlfriend yet, GREAT! Now you know what to look for! Too many people are getting married multiple times. God is not pleased with that. He sees it as adultery. It is His will that we marry once, create a family with that one person, and be happy...ecstatic in that marriage.

The scriptures also states, the man shall leave his parents. Check out the family of the man that you are considering marrying! Are they always leaning on him, trying to borrow his money? Are you in agreement with them always calling him to the house to take care of their personal problems? Guess what? It will not end after marriage. If he is giving them money now, he will continue after marriage. If his family is leaching off of him now, they will after marriage. The question is, can you handle it? If not, now is the time to discuss the problem. Don't wait. Too many men refuse to leave their father and mother. Too many women refuse to leave their parents. Extended families are famous for breaking up marriages. NOW is the time to get the problems straight.

Finally, how attracted are you to your future spouse? Please do not marry if there is a shadow of a doubt that you are totally attracted to them physically. Too many women lose their husbands because after marriage they stop having sex. The reason many women stop having sex is because their husbands are cold, rude and abusive. If you are married to a man who has the qualifications of the "faithful man" listed above in this article, you will be attracted to him forever, emotionally and physically! Women who do not want sex with their husbands are women who married the wrong man. PLEASE ladies; do not marry the wrong man. Wait. In Solomon 3:4, it is said, I found him whom my soul loves. The reason she found the one whom her soul loves is that she was PATIENT! Luke 21:19 says, in your patience possess ye your soul. The interpretation of that for a single person is that if you are patient, you will meet the one whom your soul loves.

Monday, November 11, 2002

Happy Veteran's Day. I am personally happy and proud that there are men and women out there who have and do continue to make the United States a safe place to live (including my uncle James!)
This is the first posting to my blog. I had to be a copycat and create on of my own. Carlos Butler is my gero (geek hero). I currently have nothing to say but welcome to my little piece of the world. I'm sure something profound will come up sooner or later. I've incorporated comments as well so you can leave your own words behind.
Some of you may be wondering where I came up with my blog title. Well for those that don't know my full name is Ayaba Monshelle McNeal. You still aren't getting princess out of that are you. OK...well, my first name means princess. It's Yoruba. A friend of my parents helped them come up with it. So now you can say that you know royalty. :)