The 360 Cleanse: Mind, Body, Soul

I love Spring cleaning. It’s the perfect time of year to get rid of the old stuff and make space for all the new shopping that I already KNOW I’m going to do haha.

We all typically know how to spring clean our homes, right?  The best way that I do it is to focus on one room at a time.  I start by going through everything in that room, separating the trash from what’s useful, cleaning all of the baseboards, floors, walls and more.  Finally, I reorganize everything again as I set it in its final place. Spring cleaning our homes has become easier over the years and there are so many downloadable checklists from the internet that you can easily use to help you.

But just like our homes need a deep cleaning, so also do our minds, bodies and souls.  I call this my “360 Cleanse” as it covers the 360 degrees surrounding our existence.  These are things that also need to go through a cleansing so that we can walk into this new season of life feeling fresh and restored. Here are a few tips that I’ve learned over the years as it relates to these areas:

Mind/Heart

Most of our battles lie within our minds.  This is where we store our emotional scars, hurt from past relationships, insecurities about ourselves and so forth.  One way in which we can clean out those negative thoughts and replace them with positive ones is to come up with daily affirmations for ourselves.  Here are a few that are my favorite:

  • I am enough.
  • I am a Queen.
  • Even my flaws are beautiful.
  • I was created fearfully and wonderfully by God – flaws and all.
  • That relationship doesn’t define me – I am defined by who I am in Christ.
  • I CAN do anything I put my mind on.

I think you will find that as you start to tell yourself positive affirmations those negative thoughts will start to fade and you will see that you have a little more pep in your step.  Your confidence in yourself and your abilities will continue to grow and you will enter this season a new person!

Body

This is an area that many people don’t think about.  I’ve shared this with you all before – I am an accountant. Specifically, I’m an auditor.  Between January through about mid-April every year is what we call in the public accounting industry our “busy season”. It’s a time where we are working 80+ hour work weeks, working 7 days a week, have no time for family, friends or significant others, neglect our housework and eat out ALL THE TIME!  I’ve eaten out so much over the past few months, it’s ridiculous! And where I used to workout at least 3x a week, I had only been working out maybe 3x a month!

So Spring is a great season to reset.  It’s a good time to detox your body of all of the impurities that you ate over the Thanksgiving/Christmas/New Year’s breaks or in my case, during busy season.  It’s also a good time to reset your body and get it back into “workout mode” because it’s still early enough for you to see some real changes in your body come summertime.  Summertime fine is what I always say.  So put down those chips and cookies, grab you a healthy smoothie (strawberry banana is my fav!) and give your body a good cleanse!

Soul/Spirit

Now this is my favorite spring cleaning of them all.  According to anewseason.net, there are 4 steps to take to spring clean your soul:

  • Search out hard to reach areas and surrender all.
  • Scrub out sin-stained surfaces and receive God’s grace.
  • Clear out unnecessary items, creating time for Christ.
  • Donate an abundance of love and faith to those in need.

When I read these, I thought these were the perfect recipe to clean my soul during this season.  One of the things that I’ve done is added some more spiritual reading to my life. If you follow me on social media, you’ll know that I just started reading The Wait by Megan Good and Devon Franklin and it has been one of the most powerful books for me on my spiritual journey.  Additionally, I’ve been doing a little more to make time for Christ.  I’ve been convicted in this area as I have been spending more time doing everything else (social media, blogging, hanging out with friends, etc) than I have in my word so I know I can do better!

During this season, it’s also good to self-reflect on your walk with God. Afterall, a cluttered spirit allows little to no room for God to move in your life.  (Read more about that here).

Therefore, consider what areas you need to surrender wholly to him?  What areas of sin are you still struggling with or that you feel compelled to stop doing (perhaps God is calling you to a life of celibacy/abstinence)?  How can you make more time for God so that HE is the priority?  Finally, how can you let the love of Christ shine in you as a reflection of HIM into the lives of others?

OUT WITH THE OLD, IN WITH THE NEW!!! Happy Spring to you all!

Hello Spring!

Hey Loves and Happy First Day of Spring!

There’s a song that says:

It’s a new season, it’s a new day
A fresh anointing is flowing my way
It’s a season of power and prosperity
It’s a new season coming to me.

I LOVE that song by Israel Houghton.  And what better way to walk into the first day of Spring, knowing that God is bringing us into a new season full of new mercies and a fresh anointing.

We all know that not everyone or everything gets to travel into all seasons of life with us. In fact, that’s exactly what Spring Cleaning is all about – getting rid of those things/people that clutter up our lives.  Whether it’s old friends who are only bringing negativity into your life, a career that you know it not in line with your purpose, a relationship that you KNOW isn’t good or healthy for you, or just things around your house that you don’t need anymore (like all those clothes and shoes in your closet ladies – speaking to myself here too haha). Whatever it may be, it is important to know that in order for us to make room for the new things and people God will bless us with in this season, we have to spring clean our lives! It is time for new beginnings!!!

Out with the old, in with the new!!!

Be on the lookout for my Spring Cleaning mini-series blog posts to come in April that will teach you a few tips/tricks on how to Spring Clean your mind, body, spirit and of course your house! And as always, I hope you all have a bright and prosperous Spring 2017 full of love, peace and souuulll!!! (Not sure why I felt like adding a Soul Train reference here haha – I’m just in a great mood this new season!)

~Videllia

“Catfished”

“I’m 29. Single. Woman of God. Believer in the Christian faith. But the men I meet? Boy, oh boy!”

Haha did you miss me?  I actually haven’t been going on dates in awhile so there was no need to journal my dating chronicles.  That is…until I got catfished. Yes, me. Catfished!

I decided to look up the definition of catfished online and low and behold, I found the following definition: “lure (someone) into a relationship by means of a fictional online persona”.  Yep, I had gotten catfished.  So let’s get this story started shall we…

Once upon a time in a land not so far away…

It was the end of busy season – the most ridiculously busiest time of year for an accountant like myself.  It usually falls between January and May, typically corresponding with tax season. I was overworked and tired and needed a pick me up.  Luckily, one of my homegirls from Chi-town decided she was going to come into town for some fun. I hadn’t seen her in ages.  Needless to say, we got all dolled up and hit the town.

We ended up at a lounge.  We didn’t want the club vibe but some place where we could dance a little bit and still be able to sit down to rest our aching feet (who said heels were a girls best friend?).  It wasn’t soon before I realized I had caught the attention of a nice, older gentleman.  He came over and introduced himself and ordered drinks for my friends and I. He and I danced the night away.  He was a nice guy – not too old but just right.  We went outside to chat and get to know each other better.  I told him I was an accountant and he told me he was a principal for an elementary school. Nice!  Older, handsome and successful, I thought.

A few days later, he invited me out on a date at a local bar/restaurant.  He saw to it that I had drinks and ordered my food (although the food was never delivered to me).  He walked in proudly with me on his arm and introduced me to his friends as wifey (BIG RED FLAG lol – my friends all know, I don’t play the wifey thing when I don’t even know you. Needless to say I just grinned and beared it).  Mr. Principal continued to work his way around the room, leaving me at a table with his friends.  Soon, I got up to go to the restroom. I come back and Mr. Principal was gone.  I asked his friends where he was – but no one knew.  Fifteen minutes later, he called me and said someone had broken into his school and the police wanted him to get back there immediately.  I didn’t understand why he couldn’t just wait for me to come out of the restroom to tell me that or at least offer to walk me to my car and I voiced that. (Wasn’t like I was going to be in the restroom forever!) He claims he just freaked out because nothing had happened like that before and promised to make it up to me.  I knew something didn’t feel right about the situation so I put a mental note in my head and went home. (STRIKE 1)

The Principal invited me out again a few weeks later.  When I responded, however, he did not respond. A day later, he said he did respond so, me, being who I am, I’m like screenshot it lol.  He then preceded to take a screenshot but claimed he couldn’t do it while on the phone. His phone was more high-tech than mine so I knew if I could do it, he could do it too. (STRIKE 2)

Nonetheless, I just let it go. I mean, no harm no foul. No sense in making an issue out of nothing right? A few weeks later, it was time for my phone upgrade.  Well with Verizon, when you get a new phone, you get a 10 day period to try out this caller ID feature that comes with the new phone. No way to opt out. So after I got my new phone, I realized that not all of my contacts transferred over. I was too lazy to manually do it so whenever people called/text, I just asked who it was.  Finally, one day the Principal called me. Except the name that he had given me wasn’t the name that popped up on the caller ID. So I asked him – “who is ‘John Doe’”. He said he didn’t  know who that was and why was I asking him. I explained to him that Verizon had this feature that shows the caller ID of an incoming call. He responded, “oh okay, well John Doe is my father.” Naturally I’m like wait what? You just said you didn’t know who that was.  He just repeated – that’s my father. So I asked him again – are you sure? He said yes.

Now given that he had already lied to me about not knowing the name, my Carmen Sandiego detective skills were kicking in full effect! The only thing that I knew about him was a) his first name b) he was a principal and the city his school was in and now c) his dad’s name.

So to Google I went! I typed in “John Doe – ABC City” and would you guess what happened? His father didn’t pop up! Nope! It was him! His picture popped up under the name John Doe AND he wasn’t even a principal! He was a second grade teacher!  Done lied this whole time lol.

Needless to say, I didn’t talk to the principal, second grade teacher, John Doe or whoever he was again. To be honest, it didn’t bother me that he wasn’t a principal. I have the utmost respect for everyone working in education in any capacity and I’m never the kind of woman to judge someone for their job.  My issue with him were the LIES!!! We were not a couple. We had barely even met. But if you are lying to someone you don’t even know about things that you don’t have to lie about that pretty much sums up how you will interact with them in the future. I’m just saying…

So…looks like another one bit the dust haha. Until next time!

~V.Davis

My Trip to the National Museum of African American History and Culture

In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day tomorrow, I wanted to share a quick post about my trip to the new addition to Washington, D.C.’s Smithsonian museums – the National Museum of African American History and Culture.

As many of you may no, this museum opened to the public on September 24, 2016.  The museum has been so popular that even though admission is free, you have to register for a ticket in advance.  As of today, advance tickets are already gone through March 2017!  That’s how popular this museum is.

I was fortunate enough to land a ticket and go to the museum back in December. It was a very cold Sunday morning but I was so glad I went. I spent over 4 hours in the museum exploring everything from slavery to Motown to the Civil War to the great African-American influencers throughout history.  It was a very surreal experience for me to be honest.  Overwhelming even.  There are 8 levels of African-American history and culture that it made me realize how much history I don’t even know.  To read the stories of people who lost their lives so that I could live a life more free than they did really tugged at my heart strings.  To stand in front of the real casket that Emmett Till was buried in was an experience out of this world.  (His mom had his body exhumed and donated the original casket he was buried in to be displayed in the museum.)  It also reminded me of how history is literally repeating itself now.  All of the freedom that our ancestors fought so hard to OBTAIN is requiring us to fight even harder to MAINTAIN!

I know many of you may not get the chance to see the museum yet so I just wanted to share a few of the pics that I took that day in honor of all of those brave African-American souls who have paved the way for us today and have made their mark in history!  Enjoy the gallery of photos below and remember, black lives have ALWAYS mattered – yesterday, today and forever more!

~V.Davis

 

“Forgiven, Focused and On Fire”

Every year, I scroll through my social media feeds and see so many people posting their “New Year’s goals”. Hashtag “New Year, New Me” begins to start trending.  But if you pay attention, you will also see all the posts from the “bitter police” as I call them. You know the ones that HATE when people post their New Year goals.  They’re the ones who always say, “why wait for a New Year to make changes when you can make those changes now”. I find those people laughable.  While, I agree that we don’t have to put off making changes in our lives until the next year, I also believe that it is important to set goals. Proverbs 29:18a says, “where there’s no vision, the people perish”.  Therefore, while I do my best to make changes throughout the year, I still find myself at the beginning of the next year, reflecting on the previous year and creating my vision board with goals and things I want to accomplish for that year and ultimately my future.  You can find my overall goals for the New Year here.  Today’s blog is a continuation of that but specifically focuses on my spiritual goals for my future based on the things that I have learned from this past year.

Forgiven

In 2016, one of my biggest struggles revolved around learning how to forgive myself for my own past mistakes.  Sure I knew how to forgive others but I constantly found myself scolding myself for past mistakes that God himself had already forgiven. It caused me to not be able to enjoy the first half of the year as I was in constant turmoil, never thinking I was good enough.

What about you? Are there any areas that you are struggling with in terms of forgiving yourself or forgiving others?  If so, then let me help you out!  There are really three simple steps to forgiving yourself/others:

(1) Repent

(2) Ask God to forgive you – note that this is different from repentance.  Repentance is acknowledging what you’ve done while this step ensures that you seek God’s forgiveness for those things.

(3) Accept God’s forgiveness.

Many of us can easily do these first two steps but where we struggle is accepting God’s forgiveness in our lives. At least that was my struggle. It was hard for me to accept God’s forgiveness even after I had already asked for it.  It wasn’t until I prayed and meditated that God showed me I won’t be able to fully receive his forgiveness until I accept it. If you’re anything like how I was, you often found yourself feeling unworthy of God’s grace and mercy.  These feelings would then cause you to also feel unworthy of his forgiveness. But I’m here to remind you that God’s act of redemption on the cross was done so that you and I may live even when we sin. He doesn’t want us to live each day in shame. He doesn’t hold that sin over your head anymore so why are you?  Release it. Receive it. Accept it and finally be free!

Focused

I’d like to think that I kept my focus last year but if I am to truly reflect on my past, there were several areas in which I lost focus-one which was my spiritual walk. You know how it is ladies, you meet that one guy who just makes you want to forget Jesus even existed. (Sigh).  That didn’t last too long though as I was able to pick myself back up and get back on the right track.

I also lost sight of my vision and goals for a while.  Blogging was always a goal for 2016 but I never made it a priority. What was I doing instead? Turning up, traveling, hanging out with friends, watching TV and the list goes on.  Haha. I basically had absolutely NO excuse for why I wasn’t focused.  What I learned, however, was that if I really wanted to see things come to fruition in my life, then I had to become more focused and purpose driven. I have a friend – his name is Demetris. D is such a talented artist and creator.  All over my Facebook and IG, I always see him posting various things from his artwork, to his music and video production skills to him photographing the world with his camera skills.  His drive and focus is so evident in each post. He doesn’t know it, but he inspired me to take the pursuit of my own dreams more seriously and to really learn to prioritize my dreams and goals above all else.

Is this you? Have you slacked off this year in pursuit of your goals? Maybe it wasn’t blogging like me or art/photography like my friend D but perhaps it was your fitness, spiritual or relationship goals? Maybe you wanted to spend more time with family/friends and less time at work? Maybe you wanted to get out of a relationship that was toxic for you? Whatever it is, it is never too late to get started on that now.

ON FIRE

So now that you know what I learned from 2016 about forgiveness and focus, here’s my top goal for 2017: to be ON FIRE!  While I have my normal goals (working out, eating healthy, etc.), my main goal is to be ON FIRE! I want to be on fire in my walk with Christ, on fire in how I interact with others, on fire with my pursuit of my dreams, on fire in my career, and on fire in every aspect of my life.  Everything that I learned in 2016 has only cultivated the woman who I am today and I want to use that to continue to strive towards being the best I can be.

“Forgiven, Focused and on Fire” has a nice ring to it huh?  I first heard it during a sermon at church and knew that it would be my theme for 2017. What about you? What are some of your new year’s goals?

Be sure to let me know. And like/comment/subscribe.  Again I say happy New Year loves and I hope 2017 is even better for you than 2016 ever way! :

~V.Davis

 

“When You Mess Up”

Given that it’s the end of the year and we are all evaluating our how we did this year compared to our goals, I wanted to write something to encourage you all in case you didn’t necessarily hit all of your spiritual goals this year-especially when it comes to relationships. Be encouraged!

***********************************************************************

Do you struggle with perfection? I know I do. Everyone I meet puts me on a pedestal and they have high expectations of what I should do, how I should do it and when I should do it. At work, they expect me to never be late on an assignment. In my personal life, they expect me to always look/act a certain way. In relationships, they expect me to know exactly what they want and what they are thinking; and if I do anything outside of someone’s expectations, then they make me feel like I’ve done something so horribly wrong. Does that sound familiar?

Thank God.Thank God that ONLY HE is God. You see, people are way less forgiving of others than God is. Yet, when we come to God and offer up repentance, his forgiveness is immediate. You no longer have to walk with your head held down in shame because you didn’t live up to someone else’s expectation of you.

 You only need to make sure that you align yourself with the will of God.

So what does this have to do with relationships? Over the past few months, I’ve shared several messages about relationships and trusting in God to bring you that man/woman that He has for you. However, I didn’t spend much time offering any comfort for those who may “mess up “on their journey. You see, sometimes you may have to interact with a lot of frogs before you get to meet Prince Charming. You may think these men are the one and you start to slowly let your guard down. The vow of celibacy that you once had goes out the window. You start attending church less. You start giving into the temptations and desires of your flesh instead of remembering that we are to honor God with our bodies.

You interact less with your friends and more with your new boo. Instead of going home at night, you may start to engage in a few Netflix and Chill sessions. Then, one day, you wake up and you realize that man was really just a frog and now you regret all that you had given into that relationship. You regret that painful detour that took you off the path of your spiritual walk. A walk that was so closely aligned with Christ at first but now feels so aloof and disconnected.

You know that you want to change but you don’t have anyone who you can confide in because you know your friends, family, co-workers, associates etc. will judge you given they have you on this pedestal. Well, I’m here to let you know that “messing up” is a part of life. People mess up all of the time—yes, even the very ones that judge you. God does not call us to be perfect people. In fact, there are numerous stories in the bible where God uses an imperfect person to do extraordinary things. Just look at the stories of Noah, Sarah, Jacob, Moses, David, Saul/Paul, the Twelve Apostles, etc.

God doesn’t call the qualified – instead He qualifies those He calls!

So while you may have “messed up,” know that who you are is not defined by your past mistakes, actions or “mess-ups.” God still loves you and He still WANTS to use you for His glory. All you have to do is ask God for His forgiveness and then walk in the grace and mercy that He so bountifully gives to you.

Will others still judge you? Yes. Will others still reject you because of your mistakes or what they perceive as mistakes? Yes. Will others be less forgiving of you? Yes. Unfortunately, that’s just how our world operates. However, the ONLY thing that matters is how God and God alone views you. If you can learn to accept and walk in His forgiveness then I believe no matter how you “mess up” or how “messed up” you are on this single journey, you will always be able to pick yourself back up and keep going—forgetting what’s behind and pressing forward towards what lies ahead. (Phil 3:13)

(This blog was first published by Videllia on a newmedre.com).