Bold, Brave, but Bleeding

Cafe, Girl, Book, Reading, Read, Drink, Leisure

I’ve ‘known’ Shell Vera for a number of years now as a fellow-blogger and recall her being one of the very first to engage with me in a meaningful manner, regarding one of my posts. As a newbie blogger, I appreciated this so much. To date, Shell Vera is still a regular reader and commenter at my blogs, so I had no hesitation about supporting this publication of her creative endeavours.

BOOK REVIEW: When I Stopped Remembering Tomorrow

Hang on I thought, how can someone remember tomorrow – let alone stop remembering it?

I was intrigued from the get go!

Apart from my curiosity over the title, it’s not often we have the pleasure of having a personal insight into the lives and hearts of people we know. Granted, I only ‘know’ Shell Vera as a fellow blogger but it’s still somebody I know a lot better than most authors I’ve read, whether famous or otherwise.

I bought the book.

I loved the book!

And now I’m sharing my response to Shell Vera’s powerful, poetic pieces.

I don’t know about you but when I don’t really know the author, I hardly ever read the front matter, unless it is pertinent to my understanding of the book. Now that I’m a published author and when I’m reading books from fellow bloggers, I peruse these pages with eager anticipation.

I was happy to see a dedication to fellow warriors and overcomers. Well that includes me! So from the short distance of the title to the dedication page, already my attention has been piqued.

But then I felt slightly put off after reading a comment regarding the church, which seemed harsh and unfair, and to which I could not relate  – was I going to like this book after all? Is there more of this kind of thing to come?

I read on.

The long and the short of it is that Shell Vera fell in love, met her true self for the first time and in doing so “truly met God.”

I like the framework.

Part 1 shares poetic pieces about her yesterdays followed by a separate prose section in Part 2, providing background information, or explaining what Shell had sought to convey in those pieces, or providing encouragement to hurting souls who have suffered similar abuse, and feel their dreams are impossible.

Often, we readers interpret poems according to our own, or vicarious experiences, according to literary evaluations, personal perceptions and conclusions, which usually differ to what the author originally meant or intended. It is therefore nice to actually know what the writer had intended to convey.

And now for my assessment of Shell Vera’s creative endeavours (bearing in mind the fact that I am not a poetry expert). I discuss in terms of my personal reactions to her work.

Heartfelt compassion stirs the heart of the reader, and contrasts with the cold uncompromising truth of the writer’s experience in pieces like Alone and Detached (1992): Here’s an example:

This girl has given up hope for the future,

She’s only living still because when she knocked,

Death refused to open the door for her.

Powerful pieces like The Final Nightmare (1999) will haunt you.

And in her poem The Dance (1999), Shell Vera’s beautiful and clever depiction of the dance of life, reminds us that either we ourselves, or the people with whom we tango, can become catalysts of change, for the good.

Her poems make you think. Force you to consider what it is you believe, how you interpret the gospel and how you embrace it within your own life.  After reading Wandering (2012), I wonder, how many of us need to take Jesus down from the cross of our limited imaginations and actually invite him to be a living breathing being in our day-to-day lives?

When you think of warriors, you tend to picture someone strong, staunch and solid, someone tough and triumphant, despite the odds. We think of people like Hercules, or Alexander the Great, or even King David, who was known to have slain his 10,000s.

But in our normal every-day life, particularly as a Christian where there is often pressure to present a false ‘super-spiritual’ picture, a true warrior is someone who faces the rigours and injustices of life and survives. They are warriors because they live to tell the tale. They are victorious overcomers because instead of remaining as downtrodden victims, they drag themselves up from the dust and mire of catastrophe or rejection, and push forward through the doors of hope.

Women of Warfare friends and followers, only when you have truly met and committed your life to the Lord, only when you have engaged in prayer warfare and entrusted your well-being into the hands of your Creator-God, will those negative circumstances of life become a spiritual launching pad, enabling you to soar as victorious overcomers.

So, if you are guilty of doing this, stop wasting your life yearning for tomorrow.

Start living in the present, praying in earnest, and yearning for meaningful spiritual encounters with the God who holds your tomorrow.

Meanwhile, I’d encourage you to buy the book!

Order here

You may visit Shell Vera at her website and blog  

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Start living in the present, praying in earnest, and yearning for meaningful spiritual encounters with the God who holds your tomorrow.

Clarissa’s Conversation with God

 

 

Woman, Person, Female, Young, Actress, Suit, Epoch

The above CC0 image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

The following is a conversational drama piece between God and a believer who feels she is just too busy to pray.

 

DAY 1:

Anonymous Speaker:     Hey! Are you busy?

Clarissa:                                Can’t you see that I am? What do you want?

Anonymous Speaker:     I’d just like to spend some time with you!

Clarissa:                                Oh! Well sorry, I’m just too busy!

Anonymous Speaker:     Anything I can help you with?

Clarissa:                                I can manage, thank you.

Anonymous Speaker:     So what are you doing?

Clarissa:                                Well, I’m trying to make my life a success.

Anonymous Speaker:     Okay. Well I can help you with that.

Clarissa:                                Hmmm. I don’t really see how you can.

Anonymous Speaker:     Just spend some time with me.

Clarissa:                                Look, I’ve already told you, I don’t have the time (mutters under breath), or the inclination!  I’ve got places to go, people to see, a life to live, so I really can’t spare the time to talk right now.

 

SIX MONTHS LATER:

Clarissa:                                Oh God, my life’s a complete mess. Help me!

Anonymous Speaker:     What’s wrong?

Clarissa:                                Where do I begin? (starts crying)

Anonymous Speaker:     Just tell me what’s wrong.

Clarissa:                                I’ve fallen out with my best friend and my boyfriend  dumped me last week. I hate my job but I’ve a mortgage to pay and now my ex wants to move out of our flat. How on earth will I manage?

Anonymous Speaker:     And you are telling me this now because…?

Clarissa:                                Well, you’re God aren’t you? I need you to do something! I need your help. I want you to get me out of this mess. I have nobody else to turn to.

Anonymous Speaker:     Well now, let me see. Did you set up a prayer account?

Clarissa:                                What’s that?

Anonymous Speaker:     It’s a type of Investment account. You invest time into building a relationship with me, so that when situations like this occurs, you can have peace and confidence in me, instead of feeling stressed and angry, like you are now.

Clarissa:                                Sorry. I didn’t realise that. I don’t have such an account. Does that mean you can’t, or won’t help me?

Anonymous Speaker:     Of course not! But because you have not invested into a consistent prayer life, your capacity to trust me is not where it could or should be.

Clarissa:                                But I do trust you!

Anonymous Speaker:     Do you?

Clarissa:                                Y-es.

Anonymous Speaker:     You don’t seem too sure there. Will you trust me despite what your circumstances look like, and trust that I know what’s best for you, even should I not answer your prayers in the way that you’d like, or as quickly as you’d like?

Clarissa:                                I have no choice! So, will you help me or not?

Anonymous Speaker:     What do you think?

Clarissa:                                I know you can. I’m not confident though that you will.

Anonymous Speaker:     And why is that?

Clarissa:                                Because I’ve neglected you all this time. Because I’ve not been truly appreciative of your blessings. Because when my life was tickety boo, I acted as if I was self-sufficient and didn’t really need you. Because I ignored that niggling feeling in my gut, which tried to warn me that if I continued to consign you to the back burner of my life, I’ll be sorry.

Anonymous Speaker:     And are you?

Clarissa:                                Yes. I am. Truly sorry.

Anonymous Speaker:     And why else?

Clarissa:                                Pardon?

Anonymous Speaker:     Is there any other reason why you don’t feel confident that I will help you?

Clarissa:                                Only that I don’t deserve it. I’ve sinned. My ex should not have been living with me. I knew it was wrong and I knew that this was at odds with your Word and with my claim to be a Christian, yet I still went ahead and did it anyway. I compromised big time!

Anonymous Speaker:     My dear Clarissa, have you forgotten what my Word says you should do whenever you fall into sin? All you have to do is repent (i.e. be remorseful and change direction), and ask for my forgiveness.

I am willing to forgive and I am willing to cleanse you. That’s what grace means. It means I am prepared to extend my unconditional love and mercy towards you, no matter what you’ve done. You do not have to “deserve” it!

Clarissa:                                Father God, please forgive me. Cleanse me. Help me.

Anonymous Speaker:     How do you feel now?

Clarissa:                                All warm and peaceful inside. Forgiven and cleansed. Prepared to trust you. Hopeful of my future.

Anonymous Speaker:     I am so happy to hear this my child. Your investment account is now open. Keep topping it up and watch your confidence in me grow. Watch your life straighten out, as you make consistent spiritual deposits.

Clarissa:                                O Thank you Father God! You are so gracious Heavenly Father. Why on earth did I think I could live my life without your help? I recommit myself into your hands. I am re-inviting Jesus to reign and govern my life according to your purpose. And I’m asking your Holy Spirit to come alongside me and help me to live a life that glorifies you.

Anonymous Speaker:     My dear child, it will be my utmost pleasure to see you grow and develop and pursue your destiny in Christ. Meanwhile, do enjoy the benefits of your salvation and the pleasures of my kingdom.

©Carol Hind – July 2020

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FOR RELEVANT ADDITIONAL READING:

A love letter from your Father (click here)

 

QUESTION:

Are you too busy to pray, to spiritually invest into your future?

With love,

Carol (aka Lady Cee)

 

If you’d like to purchase a resource that will help and encourage you to develop a consistent and confident prayer life, don’t hesitate to check out the links below.

 

AMAZON UK https://amzn.to/3ciUt1q

AMAZON US https://amzn.to/3bj6gM1

 

Did you enjoy reading this post? If so, please share your thoughts in a comment box below. Do you know someone who would benefit from its message? Then please don’t hesitate to share it. Thank you.

 

Black Hole Alert – Ignore At Your Peril!

 

DANGER!

WARNING!

 

Hello dear reader,

I have it on good authority that my Easter Blog Hop Party has turned into a Black Hole. So whatever you do – Do Not Attend!

However…

If you love a challenge, if you’re big enough and brave enough, if you believe you can visit and SURVIVEplease enter!

And, my dear hero/heroine – if you live to tell the tale, please tell others – and why not come back and tell me? Just leave me a message in a comment box below.

Thank You.

 

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CREDIT: The above CC0 images are from Pixabay.com

I Appreciate You!


 

To my dear followers, friends and visitors of Women of Warfare! – I truly appreciate you!

 

‘Thank you’ dear readers and followers

For granting your precious time

To read, to like, or to comment,

In response to my prose, or my rhyme.

 

‘Thank you’ dear precious visitors

For choosing my place to stop by

For making my moments as inspirational blogger

A wonderful joy-induced high.

 

My sincere thanks to those who linger,

Over posts shared from a heart of love

‘Thank you’ to those who consume, digest and ponder

Who support me with words which affirm and cause wonder,

And spurs praise to my Father above!

 

© Carol Hind – April 2017

 

 

T H A N K    Y O U !

 

 

Dear Valentine – I Love You

CCO Image - courtesy of Pixabay.com
CCO Image – courtesy of Pixabay.com

 

 

O Lord Jesus, I love you

And today I just want to say

That you have captured my heart

In an unbelievable way.

 

O Lord Jesus, I need you

And today, I express my love

With a heart so full of gratitude

For coming to Earth from above.

 

Dear Lord Jesus, I thank you

For surrounding me with your grace

For granting me every required resource

To overcome all that I face.

 

My precious Lord Jesus, I love you

And look forward to when I can see

Your beauty, your brightness,

Those nail-scarred hands

Which were marred to set me free!

 

© Carol Hind – 11 February 2017

 

DID YOU…?

Have you sent Jesus your knee-mail today? (Image by: Gerd Altmann - Pixabay.com)
Have you sent Jesus your knee-mail today? (Image by: Gerd Altmann – Pixabay.com)

 

Did you…?

Have you spent time in the throne room today?

Have you spent quality time with Him, or did you rush away?

Did you linger at His feet?

Linger in His presence, so pure, so sweet?

 

Did you let Jesus soothe your soul’s pain?

Did you let him refresh you, once again?

Did you accept His Word’s healing balm

Whispered with love and authority

And with a voice so cool, so calm?

 

Did you give Jesus sufficient time?

To tell you about his love—

Unfathomable, unconditional,

Tried and true,

Ready at your bidding to be lavished upon you?

 

Or did you rush absentmindedly away?

Not give Jesus ample time today?

Ample time – for him to remind you

That he sees far beyond your limited view,

That his unfailing mercies

Are prepared and packaged just for you?

 

Did you pause in his holy presence?

So he could explain,

That you need not agonise,

Despair, or nurse that pain?

 

Dear wounded, weary, hurt or searching one

Relinquish your load,

Rejoice, and trust God anew

For the road to victory,

The key to your breakthrough,

Lies not in confusion, questions or tears

Lies not in rebellion, anger or fears.

 

Let me tell you dear daughter,

The solution you seek

Is available this hour, this day, this week!

Yes, the answer is found

In His presence profound,

In tarrying in His throne room,

Trusting His Word,

Waiting for his voice of wisdom,

Waiting patiently – not perturbed!

 

And should that answer come winging

From heaven’s miraculous sphere,

Remember to thank him,

Remember to praise,

Remember to worship the Ancient of Days.

 

© Carol Hind – July 2016

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Five Minute Friday: EASY

NoProblem(GerdAltmann)-98376_960_720Image by Gerd Altmann (Pixabay.com)

 

Q: What is Five Minute Friday?

A: It is a 5min free write blog event hosted by Kate Motaung. Every Thursday Kate announces a one-word prompt on her blog at 10pm EST. The link-up is open for a full week, until the following Thursday evening. For further details on how to participate visit her blog at: Heading Home.

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Five Minute Friday Prompt: EASY

When my father was alive one of his frequent sayings as he shook his head was: “Life – it no’ easy!

As a child I did not know what he meant. How could I? I was being fed, clothed and had a roof over my head. All I had to do was wake up, eat what was provided, play. And the hardest thing I had to deal with was boring household chores, when I’d much rather be reading!

Then I grew up.

Then I became a Christian.

Now when I first made a true commitment to Christ at the age of 24 years, I thought my life was going to be one beautiful mosaic of light and happiness—come to Jesus and everything will be ok—so I thought!

But living this Christian life is not easy. Dying to self is not easy. Swallowing pride and trying to walk in the footsteps of Christ, is not easy.

[End of 5mins]

Sure my life would resemble the rosy glow of “happy ever after”, as depicted in story books, if there were no challenges to face, no insecurities to overcome, no fears to battle, no inconveniences to put up with, no ‘difficult’ people to cross swords with, no ugliness within my own soul to address. But the fact is, difficulties, disappointments, frustration and hardship are an unavoidable fact of life!

And why on earth did I think it would be any different? Why did I think that pursuing dreams, making decisions, relating to family and friends, fighting both seen and unseen foes would be easy? My own father, speaking from years of bitter experience, declared that it was not so.

But young ears and juvenile hearts do not understand that they have heard the voice of “I’ve seen-it, endured it, and that’s just the way life is” wisdom. Young ears and juvenile hearts do not recognise or pay heed to that voice of wisdom, the voice of accrued knowledge, the voice of proven experience. Young ears and juvenile hearts pay heed to the fascinating voice of story-weavers, the wisdom of glossy magazines with their glossier adverts selling unrealistic dreams and pie-in-the-sky solutions.

And why did I believe that dedicating my life to the one who loved and died for me, would somehow shield me from the harsh realities of a life lived in a fallen world… a world that lies in darkness… a world steeped in sin?

Why on earth, given the incontrovertible evidence of stories about biblical characters, would I be so foolish, so ignorant to believe a Christian life would be a stress-free, problem-free life?

Did Joseph, falsely accused of rape and thrown into prison have it easy? Did David (even though anointed as King of Israel), in perpetual fear for his life whilst being pursued and hunted by his jealous rival King Saul, have it easy? More to the point, did Jesus my Lord and Saviour—the only sinless man who ever lived, yet was betrayed and crucified—have it easy?

I have grown up since the days my deceased father uttered his familiar proverb.

I have slowly grown and matured as a believer, since I made my commitment to Christ.

I have come to the realisation that life indeed, is not easy.

But…

I also realise that without difficulties and disappointments, without tests and trials, without ups and downs, I would not know my Father God, I would merely know about him.

Without obstacles and opposition, I would have no first-hand knowledge of his ability to help and deliver me. Without reasons to pray and seek his face, I would not encounter the One who hears and answers prayers, the One who sees and cares, who loves and provides, who comforts, encourages and strengthens.

And so, now I can speak from the place of a new and higher wisdom. Now I can joyfully quip: who needs easy? What I need  is Jesus!

Yes. Now I can truthfully say, if I were given a choice between a problem-free, stress free existence without God and a sanctified but perplexed-ridden Life with him (note the capital L), I’d choose the latter without any hesitation.

  

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Awesome, August and All-powerful!

  PRAISE PRAYER & WORSHIP WEDNESDAY

 

marble(KatrinSchulz)-393357_960_720Image: Katrin Schulz – Pixabay.com

 

Praise

GOD! Let the cosmos praise your wonderful ways,

The choir of holy angels sing anthems to your faithful ways!

Search high and low, scan skies and land,

You’ll find nothing and no one quite like GOD.

The holy angels are in awe before him;

He looms immense and august over everyone around him.

GOD of the Angel Armies, who is like you,

Powerful and faithful from every angle?

(Psalm 89:5-8: The Message)

 

 

Prayer

Father God,

Since creation shouts in triumphant testimony to your phenomenal power,

How can our lips refrain from praising you?

You are awesome Holy God.

Having fashioned us from dust into complex works of art,

How can we refuse to sacrifice our lives to you?

You are worthy Holy God.

Crowned with precious gifts for your service, dare we use them for self-glory?

You are gracious Holy God.

Hear the cry of our hearts and

Let the work of our hands glorify—not alienate you.

May our endeavours reinforce your divine order—not undermine it.

Combine our private faith and public pursuits into a pleasing and lingering fragrance,

Which rises like incense to your throne. Amen.

© Carol Hind 2005

 

Worship

(please don’t skip this video – you will be blessed! – I recommend that you open this to full screen)

 

 

 

Wishing all Women of Warfare! (Wow!) followers and visitors a Happy Easter!