Saturday, June 29, 2019

Finding A Good Church Home

I was recently talking with a young lady at work.  I actually overheard her talking with someone about why she hadn't joined a church.  She was recent without a Pastor since that one had passed.  Since I know her, I asked what church was she attending.  She told me the name of the church which I was familiar with.  She said it was too big.  I asked how many members.  She said about 500.  Since I attend a megachurch, I didn't think that was too big.  She said that she had a relative that goes there, but she was still scared to join.

I didn't ask her why she was scared to join because I know other single women who sort of bounce from church to church or don't go to church at all.  A lot of people are at the point where they want to go in, get a word and go home.  They don't want to get to know people in the church because they fear how they may be treated and it is just safe not to be in a clique. I know from whence I speak having been single for a long time and now married.  I thank God for being married because I have a covering.  Some of the things that people try with single people, they are not going to try with married people.  There are married women who attend church and their husband does not and at times they are privy to church politics. However, I would assume that people respect them.

When I was single, I grew up in a church where my grandmother was a member.  Later, My Uncle Willie Lee took us to church and it was safe. The Pastor was respectful and that's where I stayed until I graduated from high school and came to college.  Sometimes we visited other churches for programs and I felt respected.  In college, I started out going to the Baptist Student Union which was cool, but I wanted to attend a church.  I went to Prescott Baptist across the street and that was not really where I wanted to be.  It was small, but I needed something more.  Then, I went to Olivet Baptist right down the street from the University of Memphis and stayed there until I was directed to go to Temple of Deliverance and that's where I am now.

In my 54 years, I have seen and experienced a lot which I will not disclose here. Some people have cool or cordial relationships with their Pastors and they don't mind getting the relationship hookup, but for the majority of people, that's something that they want to do on their own.  Pastors need to respect that because the Bible says "And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God had respect unto them." (Exodus 2:25)  A lot of people stay at home and watch a TV ministry or online.  I did that for about a year as an adult and didn't miss a beat.  I sent my tithes in and everything was cool.  I believed that if Jesus came back at that time I would have gone with Him as well. Of course, I told her that my church was cool, but she says that the church is too big.  I pray that God will lead her and others where to join.  Sometimes people sit at a church for a few years until they feel comfortable.


Sunday, June 2, 2019

Pray Without Ceasing

Pray in this Manner
You need a prayer life.  Some of you may say that I have a prayer life.  You need to pray in the Holy Ghost.  We need all the help that we can get down here.  People have been saying for years that Jesus is coming back soon.  I believe that to be true.  I also believe that we are closer than we may believe.  It seems that events are taking strange turns.  I was impressed and proud when we elected our first African-American President Barack Obama.  I actually worked on his campaign in the first term.  I supported him with my vote the second term, but I was too busy trying to finish my doctorate to work on the second campaign. Then after he left office, we elected someone who never had any political experience.  I like many others thought he was not really serious about running for  President. That should give people hope that God can do anything. Sometimes, God allows certain people to be elevated to power so that people can depend on Him more and pray.  He did that with Israel when they desired a king. I really don't know God's thoughts because the Bible says our thoughts are not His thoughts neither our ways His ways (Isaiah 55:8-9).  

I do know that there is a big difference in the moral projected beliefs of some Republicans and Democrats. I say projected because it is what we see in the media. Most Republicans are conservative and against abortion and same-sex marriage.  God is against abortion because one of the Ten Commandments states that "Thou shalt not kill" (Exodus 20:13).  Many Democrats are liberal and some promote various lifestyles that God does not endorse.  Yes, many have lifestyles that are not pleasing to God, but they belong to God and God called them to make a change.  Many times, you can't tell people about something that you have not lived or been through.  I believe that God allows a lot of people who are going to promote change to get in office. Once, you get there you must stay focused.

I am not big on spending money on a wall.  I had to question the building of a wall. Drugs have been coming into our country for decades.  Why are they primarily coming to America?  Is it because our borders are unsecured?  Yes, people have an appetite for these drugs after the introduction, but if you don't have the supply you will have to kick the habit.  Some topics are really above my spiritual and political pay grade.  Why can't Democrats fight for a fetus just as much as Republicans?  Aren't there conservative Democrats out there?  God is looking for a change.  I know many people who I suspect are lesbian or gay.  I just pray for them.  I can't tell people what to do.  I am not perfect.  I have been in sin before. It's not a place that you want to stay in.  I know that when we leave this earth we will see God whether everyone believes in Him or not.  Our life will have already been judged.  I ask you.  Is your eternal resting place worth you trying to fit in or stay in?  One thing I do know about many who are gay or lesbian. They basically mind their own business.  I cannot say this about some others.  So, we all have some work to do. I believe that I can speak on this since I am called to teach and just because I am not teaching in a church setting don't mean that I have to be quiet.  I have people who try to throw my past up in my face or in the spirit because I can discern that.  My answer to them:  Can you bring up something that's not 20 to 30 years old because all of that is forgiven?

These sexual issues are big topics for politics and God.  I believe Republicans get a lot of traction because of their moral compass.  I can say that I voted Republican once at age 18 for Ronald Reagan.  I didn't have anyone in my ear telling me who to vote for since I was new to voting in Memphis.  That was my first time voting.  Since then, I have voted Democrat, but I wish that our politicians would not be so liberal.  Why don't all Republicans want all Americans to have affordable or free health care?  Why is the President trying to take money from the Pell Grant program that put me and millions of others through college for free? Why are we trying to throw immigrants out who are running from corrupt and dangerous environments? Then, we got the nerve to say their relatives can't come over here just the upper class.  Unbelievable! We need new people running for office that have standards, want change, and desire to help all Americans.  We don't need people trying to find ways to keep people poor or exclude them.  Then, we try to pass laws that silence those who are called to tell it and tell it like it is.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

The Truth About School Climate and Student Achievement

How does the school climate affect student achievement?  You might be surprised at some of the findings. Across the country, scores of principals are replaced on a yearly basis because their schools are not performing.  I am sure the majority of these individuals would like to keep their jobs.  It indeed does take a village to raise a child, but it also takes a village to run a school.  Many principals are promoted to other positions because of their ability to effectively run a school.

Principals are placed at schools at different times during the school year, but the majority of principals start a new year with their school. Most start at the end of May or the first week of June.  It is important to note that there are many factors that cause principals to be ineffective.  Some have to deal with the situation that they are placed in.  Others deal with the leadership style of the principal.  One would have to agree that community support and involvement at a school will indeed help a school to become effective.  How can a principal come in hitting the ground running and be truly effective?  Principals must participate in shared leadership of running the school.  In most cases, many of the staff members in the school have just as much experience as the principal.  This would lead one to believe that they have plenty of knowledge regarding student achievement.  Therefore, principals usually have their most effective teachers as teacher leaders if the teacher is willing to serve.

There are so many components to school effectiveness.  An astute principal will survey a school staff at the start of the year thus identifying strengths, weaknesses, and relationships of the staff.  Of course, no one is asking a principal to hand over leadership to their teachers.  However, the perception of shared leadership is a great motivator for teachers and a segway for improved student achievement.  We do live in a world where many of the teachers being managed are working on educational leadership degrees.  However, priorities do change for some teachers and that may no longer be the case.  That teacher is still a vital resource of knowledge in various areas and is a part of the climate created at the school.  School climate is best described as the atmosphere created in the school. How does the teacher feel coming to work?  How do students feel about attending school?  How do parents feel about visiting the school? School climate is also tricky.  A principal sometimes will not always know when the school climate is an issue because they are no longer a teacher.  That is why education organizations, the government, and others constantly survey leadership, teachers, students, and parents.

School leaders take a look at my dissertation below to gain more insight into teacher perceptions in school and how it relates to student achievement. Consider some school climate initiatives to make the school environment more conducive to student learning.  Most importantly, involve those in the surrounding community with your school.  You might be surprised at how effective it will be.



An Analysis of the Relationship Between Teacher Perception of Community Support and Involvement in Their Schools and Students Rates of Attendance, Graduation, and Academic Proficiency 

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Shifting the Atmosphere

It is time to shift the atmosphere with prayer.  What are you looking for God to do? Do you have a prayer life?  Have you asked God for anything lately?  It is time that you do.  It is time to shift the atmosphere.  John 3:1-2 declares: "Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth."  

Are you where God asked you to be?  Do you know where you are supposed to be? Do you have a purpose?  These are all good questions to ask.   "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added unto you." (Matthew 6:33).

Saturday, November 3, 2018

EXPERIENCE THE GLORY

Now is a good time to purchase the book GLORY...THE HAIR at
Glory...the Hair
You will be glad that you did.  Take a look inside Touch Up Beauty Salon to see how the elite of Memphis lives.  Find out why one woman has it in for her stylist and it's not about a man.  It's all about hair.  It's about Jennifer's hair.  You probably don't have bad hair days, but Jennifer's bad hair day lasts for the whole novel.  See why.  See how the customer and client end up in court.  Who wins?  What was the sentence if any?  There are two sides here to the story...Jennifer's side, Shelia's side, and the truth.  What is the truth anyway?  Read the book to find out.  If you are looking for petty women, read the book.  Even if you are not looking for petty women read the book anyway.

Saturday, October 20, 2018

Meet Me in Brownsville

I am so looking forward to meeting some of the Glory...the Hair community.  Meet me in Brownsville, Tennessee as I will be signing copies of my book GLORY...THE HAIR.  I would love an opportunity to speak with you regarding hair and the issues that women like Jennifer face today in keeping their hair together.  The event will take place on Saturday, October 27 from 10 a.m.to 3 p.m. at 363 Woodlawn Road in Brownsville, Tennessee.

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Respect

Respect will take you a long way in life.  If you have respect for people, they are more than likely to follow your leadership.  If you have respect for your kids even while being a disciplinarian, they will not rebel against your rules.  Respect shows that you have professionalism, and people won't mind working for you or attending your ministry.  Too many times those in ministry don't respect those who they have the rule over.  People can't receive the teaching that they need if they are not present for the teaching.

Students want teachers to respect them and teachers want students to respect them.  Granted there will always be those who receive respect and they don't know how to be respectful.  The Bible says that God had respect unto Israel (Exodus 2:25).  If you will notice, most mega ministries and large corporations have people in leadership who are very respectful.  They understand how competitive it is out there and they are looking for an edge. Focus on respect this week and see what benefits you receive from it.