Wednesday, December 3, 2008
First we must allow our Heavenly Father to do the picking. And second, the decision for a mate must be made on a spiritual and intellectual basis before it’s made on an emotional one.
"What about love? Shouldn’t that be the third? You ask. No, and I’ll tell you why. "The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? (Jeremiah 17:9).
The heart is willful and is driven by its own agenda. It does not consider things rationally and intelligently it just loves to love! Therefore you have to point it in the right direction: "Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life" (Proverbs 4:23).
Whenever you meet a man, you need to get clearance from God, check out his attributes, and then allow your heart to engage.
Dating exists not for mating; it exists for collecting data. I believe that the biblical design would be friendship, courtship and then marriage.
Friendship is two people walking together in agreement and accountability, learning and growing together.
Courtship follows the mutual agreement to commit to one another exclusively - it is the decisive turning toward the agreed-upon goal of the marriage altar. It is a period of laying a foundation and preparing your life together after marriage.
But dating? Well, if you do date, use the time wisely to gather these facts.
1. Check out the fabric. Is the person mate material? Does this man have an intimate relationship with the Father through Jesus Christ? Does he care what God thinks about his behavior? Is he accountable to God as well as another co-laborer in the faith? Accountability is an important factor. It is imperative to maintaining a committed relationship. Is your potential spouse a member of the same family - the family of God?
You need to have common interests and values and agree on the essentials of living day to day. You have a similar spiritual walk. You eat the same spiritual diet. You enjoy a lot of similar things. You have like interests, like goals in life, like opinions on basic life issues.
You have had like experiences in your background. Though there is some truth to the idiom that opposites attract, like-minded folks fare better together.
Furthermore, does he want to get married? If you want to be married and your dreamboat isn’t interested, don’t waste your time. Remember, women fall in love and get married. Men decide to get married and then look for a wife. Note the difference in order. So if a guy says he’s not looking for anything serious, take his words seriously. If he’s not going in your direction, get off the bus and wait for the right one.
2. Does this man want you? Is he pursuing you? The man who is right for you will pursue you, and God’s hand in the relationship will be clear. No guessing, no fleeces, no dead ends.
Scripture says: "He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the Lord" (Proverbs 18:22). Note -who finds whom? THE MAN FINDS THE WIFE. From the beginning of time, God has transported men and women across the world in order to put them together.
At the RIGHT TIME, He will bring that man on the scene and he will find you. In God’s perfect design, the man is the one who recognizes his mate. Adam has no problem recognizing that Eve was his missing rib. You do not need to strategically place yourself anywhere. You don’t have to help a guy out because he’s shy!
Men will do whatever they have to do to get what they truly want. The man in your life should recognize you as the pearl of great price in his life and be willing to do whatever he must in order to gain your hand. If he is passive about gaining your affections, take it as a sign that he is not interested.
Many a woman’s mother has suggested that it is a good idea to marry a man who loves you more than you love him. As cold as that sounds, it actually might be scriptural if you stop to think about it: "We love him because he first loved us" (1 John 4:19). Until then, take the ultimate chill pill. You don’t need a bunch of men in your life to make you feel all right about yourself.
You need only one man - your man, the one God has selected to select you. And trust me, the right man at the wrong time can be just as awful as the wrong man at any time. So trust God’s timing in this. He is the ultimate matchmaker. Relax, sit pretty and allow yourself to be found. Again - WAIT until the man voices his intentions. He should take the lead in establishing the relationship. You may have an inkling that he is the one, but God will use the man to set the tone of the relationship. Allow him the opportunity to woo you - this is your first act of submission. Jesus set the standard for all men to follow. They should love us first. And they should lead the relationship.
3. The man in your life should not desire to move into your house, only into your heart. A man who prepares for your future has made his intentions clear. A man who is husband material has the means to take care of a wife. He is a responsible human being who understands he needs to have something to offer. In short, a man should have the means to be a suitable lover for you.
4. Check out his buddies. Everyone knows birds of the same feather flock together, yet most women fail to see the connection between a man and his friends. A man’s pals tell you a lot about the person that you haven’t seen yet. They reveal things about the guy’s character that might be hidden when he is on good behavior. Everyone knows how to put his best foot forward. Don’t stay focused on the foot, check out the rest of the body!
5. Check out his relationship with his mother. How does he treat her? This is your preview of how he will treat you. There are lots of men who, because of a negative relationship with their mothers, really don’t like women, yet say they do. Unresolved issues between mother and son continue between husband and wife.
6. Remember that a man’s family reveals the cloth from which he’s cut. Take note and decide whether you want your future with the man in your life to look like his present family situation.
7. Check out the patterns of his life. Do you see repeated cycles of drama in his personal kingdom? Broken relationships? Problems in making commitments --including the job market? Mood swings? Is a problem always someone else’s fault? Does he embrace responsibility or shirk it? Does he keep his promises? Is he a man of good reputation? Remember all garments look wonderful hanging in the store, but with wear, some begin to unravel. Give yourself time and space to check out the man in your life. Time will always reveal whether or not he is made of the right stuff.
8. Does this man have a vision for his life? Is he running with that vision? Remember, God decided Adam needed help once Adam got busy DOING his assignment. As we saw Adam, a man doesn’t need help until he is busy doing what he was created and called to do. Is the man in your life guided by sense of destiny and purpose, or does he just allow life to happen around him? A man who is not certain of his mission can be a most miserable person - and you’ll be miserable too if you know where YOU want to go in life.
A man who has vision is not intimidated by a woman whose mission statement is clear. He will be your best ally, cheerleader and assistant because he wants you both to make it! A man who cannot be supportive of your achievements because he is floundering in a sea of uncertainty over his own life is not a healthy partner to have and to hold forever.
Creating dependencies or feelings of obligation is not the way to get the best out of your man. Somewhere along the way, he will resent you and flee from the smothering burden of obligation he associates you with. You want a man who is firmly anchored in his identity in Christ. Remember, we are looking for a man who will be priest and leader of his home. His first instinct should be to want to cover you, redeem you, and provide for you. Your job is to decide if this is the man God has ordained for you to complement.
9. Complimentary. Do your talents and gifts complement his? Do his gifts, compliment yours? What about your temperaments? Do you see the two of you as an effective team capable of bringing blessing to the lives of those around you? Do your futures mesh? Can you coordinate your gifts in an attractive and effective way? This is why knowing your purpose is so important. Make sure your hearts beat for mutual causes. When I go shopping I always consider the fabric, the fit and what I already have in my closet. Will my next purchase be a complimentary addition to what I already have? If I find that I am going to have to buy shoes and matching accessories to go with a new outfit, I leave it right on the rack. It is too expensive a proposition.. If the man you meet makes you feel that you need to completely reinvent yourself, something is wrong.
This is where I ask you to consider the relationship in terms of cost. Is this relationship expensive spiritually, emotional or physically? Does your longing for a mate make you willing to forfeit who you are in the process? Or does he see you as the gift that you are? The man in your life should consider you a rare find, a priceless jewel-because of you he is getting ready to get blessed big-time! Any relationship that causes you to feel unworthy, unlovely, unacceptable, undesirable or that you have to work for love, is too expensive!
God has called the man to cover, protect and provide not only materially for a woman, but emotionally and spiritually as well. You should be richer in mind, body and spirit for your union with the man of your dreams. The man in your life should make rich deposits into your heart and spirit, not withdrawals.
10. Does he have a healthy love and acceptance of himself? Make sure the man in your life has taken time to heal from past relationships and has made peace with himself. How he cares for himself is how he will care for you.
A man’s relationship with God is crucial here.. His love for himself will only be as strong as his love for God. This is not something that you can impart. You cannot be his savior or teacher. That is out of spiritual order. In his rightful place as your personal priest, he should be leading you to a richer relationship with Christ.
If he is causing you to compromise your faith and destabilize your walk, if he is leading you into sexual sin or causing you to be distracted from your commitment to God, the relationship is too expensive. Offending the Lover of your soul, who promises you eternal love, is too high a fare to pay for a ride that has a limited run. If you and your man can’t soar in the Spirit, when the force of your love for another is tested by the pull or gravity of the world, your union will not be able to survive.
So you decide. How much is your life worth? How much is your love worth? You will be able to accept only what you believe you deserve. God himself calculated the worth of your love and decided it was worth His life. He now pledges you His love for eternity. Yes, Jesus sets the example for all others to follow when He paid a ransom for His bride. Should you expect less from a mortal man? Throughout the Biblical age, men were willing to pay the cost for what they truly desired. The truth of the matter is, everyone knows that anything worth having, costs and no one gets a ride in this life for free.
Dear Heavenly Father,
God I confess that I have not always been as careful as I should’ve been with my heart. From time to time, my desire for love has caused me to leave my heart in the wrong hands. I now commit my heart into Your hands for safekeeping. Please help me to stop being so impulsive with what you deem so precious. As I learn to celebrate Your love for me, let me learn from Your example what a bridegroom should really be like. Help me to never settle for less than what you desire for me. As I embrace You as the Lover of my soul, keep my affections in the haven of Your own heart. As I rest in Your love, make me more discriminating of those who approach me.
I ask that You take over this area of my life.. Keep me from those You know would hurt my heart. I invite You to set a hedge around me and keep me from all who would draw me into unfruitful relationships until the day you present me to the mate that You have selected for me. Grant me the discernment to recognize him as he recognizes me. Cleanse me from the temptation to typecast the men I meet according to what I see. Help me to trust in Your knowledge and lean not on my own understanding. I know that You know what is best for me; therefore I yield to Your choice. In Jesus Name. Amen.
Ladies this is something you should definitely share with a friend, whether you are single or married... It is something to think about, When you ask is "He" the one!
Saturday, November 29, 2008
I wonder if you have seen the new trend in funeral services. Ok, now you wonder what does funerals have to do with weddings or events. Well funeral is an event, and people actually hire people to help plan this event. And funerals are not even called funerals or memorials anymore. Their called Celebration of Life or Life Celebration.
There’s a lady at my church who told me that she doesn’t want anyone crying at her funeral. No one is allowed to wear black, but white, and put her in a sexy party dress, not in her deaconess or church dress. And lastly she wants joke and party and laugh at her funeral. No tears allowed for she has lived a long happy life! She warns and threatens that to me every time we talk about a person we know that’s passed or death or having a funeral at our church. She wants everyone to celebrate her life, not her death!
She’s not the only one that thinks that way. And it’s become one of the newest trends in the event business. So here’s a few tips to pull off a celebration if you just don’t know how to do one.
First you should have this type of service to celebrate the life that the person lived, by remembering the good times, not the death as I said before. You can have it at the time you would normally do a funeral or sometime after the funeral.
The celebration can be held at your church like you would do a funeral but call it a celebration. You can have it at your home or a hall or a place that you loved one was fond of or is all about such as a beach if it was something they would like to do. And then have a hall or gym to feed everyone at. Make sure that you decorate the place of where they will be eating if it's held at aa venue. Remember it's a celebration! Just as the funeral, the family and/or clergy should lead the service. Close friends of the deceased should be able to participate. It’s their loss too.
Now you wonder what kind of activities should be done at the celebration. Well a video/picture slide show can be done just as you do for a wedding or a party. Funny stories of your loved one can be told. You can have a gospel choir come in and sing a lively song or a group or someone you know can sing thier favorite song, or a song that speaks about them. Ask couple friends and familymembers read a poem of your loved one life. Have memorial songs and lyrics incorporated into the celebration.
Lastly use your cultural customs, family traditions in the celebration. I’m from Jamaica, and a week before the funeral, all the family gets together and stay together. We do things to keep each other laughing by playing games and joking with each other to make the pain less hurtful of our loss. At night we sing silly songs (most of them were cultural) and funny acting of each other and the loved one. In Jamaica they use to sit outside under something. We call this “Night Night”. Friends and church members will cook a lot of food for us everyday including the day of the funeral and take care of our personal needs.
So just remember that Celebration of Life is just a way to reflect on a person’s life. It’s a way to celebrate instead of morning. ‘Cause we have hope that someday soon, we will see them again.
Monday, November 24, 2008
- White and rose wines should be refrigerated just until chilled, for 1 to 2 hours.
- Light red wines may be chilled only slightly.
- Full-bodied red wines are always served at room temperature.
- When figuring servings, allow one glass of wine per guest per hour. The average serving of dinner wine or champagne is 3 to 3 1/2 fluid ounces; of cocktail or dessert wine, 2 to 2 1/2 ounces.
What Wines Go With Which Dinner Courses?
Sherry is usually the first wine offered at dinner, usually with a soup that contains sherry. A dry white wine is served with fish or with an entree to which it is complementary. Red wine is normally served with red meats, duck and game. At less formal dinners, a claret or light red wine may be drunk throughout the meal. When champagne is the only wine served, it is served as soon as the first course has begun and then throughout the meal. When other wines are included, champagne is served with the meat course.
Appetizers - Since the concept of appetizers is to tease and please the palate before a meal, dry or medium, light bodied acidic white wines are usually good choices because they have a refreshing quality that tends to stimulate one's appetite. The carbonation in a sparkling wine is great with many hor d'oeuvres.
Fish - Dry white wine (Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc) usually pair best with seafood because the wine's crispness allows the food's subtler flavors to surface. Also, light bodied red wines with little tannin (Gamay Beaujolais) are delicious with firmer-fleshed fish, like Swordfish, that are grilled or prepared with tomato in the sauce.
Poultry - poultry and pork, depending on how they are prepared, their tastes, textures and appearances vary, as do the choices for a perfect wine match. Carefully consider the sauces to help you select the right wine, a white, blush or red may be appropriate.
Veal - the leanness and dedicated flavor of veal is complemented by lighter red wines, well aged red wines or dry white wines. Be careful to not overwhelm the flavor of the meat and consider the flavors in the sauce.
Beef/Lamb - are higher in fat and require wines with sufficient tannin to cut through the full flavor of the food. Fine cuts of meat pair wonderfully with complex or aged red wines (Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot). Meats that are braised in tomatoes or are highly seasoned or marinated need an aggressive younger red (young Cabernet Sauvignon).
Ham - cured ham with wine takes careful matching of the contrast of the saltiness and sweetness of the meat. If the ham glaze is sweet, a fruity rose or blush (White Zinfandel) can be a nice match for both taste and color.
Recommended Food and Wine Pairings
· Cannelloni - Chardonnay
· Fettucine Alfredo - Frascati, Sauvignon Blanc
· Fettucine Marinara - Gamay Beaujolais
· Lasagna - Chianti, Cabernet Sauvignon
· Linguine Clam Sauce - Soave, Chardonnay
· Tortellini al Pesto - Pinto Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc
· Spaghetti Primavera - Soave, Sauvignon Blanc
· Fish, grilled or broiled - Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc
· Fish, baked or sauted - Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc
· Fish, blackened - Johannisberg Riesling
· Fresh shellfish - Sauvignon Blanc, Johannisberg Riesling
· Lobster Thermidor - Gamay Beaujolais, Zinfandel
· Fried Catfish - Chardonnay
· Baked Dover Sole - White Zinfandel
· Salmon en Croute - Sauvignon Blanc
· Salmon with Buerre Blanc - Chardonnay
· Cioppino - Zinfandel, Gamay Geaujolais
· Roasted Chicken - Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc
· Barbecued Chicken - Gamay Beaujolais
· Sweet and Sour Chicken - White Zinfandel, Johannisberg Riesling
· Chicken with Brown Sauce - Chardonnay, Gamay Beaujolais
· Roasted Duck/Orange Sauce - Zinfandel, Pinot Beaujolais
· Chicken w/Cream Sauce - Chardonnay, Johannisberg Riesling
· New York Strip Steak - Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot
· Beef Stroganoff - Merlot, Pinot Noir
· Beef Wellington - Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot
· Au Poivre (Pepper Steak) - Cabernet Sauvignon, Zinfandel
· Filet Mignon w/Bernaise - Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot
· Roast Prime Rib - Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot
· Tournedos of Beef - Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot
· Hamburger - Gamay Beaujolais
Friday, November 21, 2008
Ok...so here's the truth.....the whole truth and nothing but the truth. LOLOL ok ok for real, being a wedding and event planner is fun, and stressful, tiresome, exhausting, exciting and everything in between! There's so many emotions, so many choices to make and help to the bride's vision come to life. But at the end of the day, well more like when it's all said and done, the final toasts been given and they all say their good byes....IT WAS WORTH IT ALL! All the drama, the bridezilla mood swings, the crazy demands that some brides think they must have, the happy and sad tears, the smiles and laughter, I'm ready to take on the next bride, or the next event to bring to life! I love it and can't get enough of it! I love helping people so why not do something that helps someone on thier big day!
Sometimes, yes I must admit like right now....I just want to shut off my phone from the non stop ringing, the forever flowing emails that exhausting and frustrating (mostly from vendors), and just take a break and walk away and breathe. Yes my eyebrows go up when the budgets are tight....but each bride deserves the best and will provide the best no matter the budget. Each deserves a fabulous day! No doubt about it!
So truthfully, this is my passion, and dream and will not stop pushing and promoting. I will not give up on doing my thang! I believe everyone should get out there, especially the young generation like me and live your dream, start your own destiny, own your own company. Even if your previous dreams fall like mine have...there's always a reason. I found out why, cause this is what I'm ment to do. Somewhere along the line..I will figure out away to apply my IT degree in this path. But I love designing, I love decorating, I love making people smile!