What’s in your hand?
I grew up in church. And it was in church that 5 is the number of grace...
So if there is an unsaved person near you or close to your heart, I believe if you lift your hand and point all 5 of your fingers up to the LORD...
Spread them, so that HE can see...
And ask GOD to give that person grace..
Then think for a moment...
Sometimes GOD chooses to use us a conduit for grace...
As a conduit of love..
As a conduit of temperance and self control...
As a conduit of mercy...
Then ask yourself...
Are we showing mercy?
See GOD is love!
And HE loves hard!
and HE loves the person that you are concerned about who is going the wrong way?
Who says hateful things against GOD?
GOD loves them too.
GODS LOVE IS GREAT!
Because our GOD doesn’t discriminate!
There’s no application with questions about age, race or creed.
You dont have to submit your resume..
I felt my spirit start singing Hezekiah Walkers version of “Love lifted me!”
Hezekiah Walker and Kirk Franklin are 2 people who got me through those times my mother put her fist on the top of my head or at the base of my skull and neck.
She would laugh and say, “I will break your skull!”
She actually did...
She punched me there so much, the neurologist said,
“Jamie you have a chiari malformation...”
my mother sought to break me...
And break me, she did.
I learned the lesson she wanted me to learn though...
Don’t walk in front of her...
Or on the side..
Or in back.
just don’t walk...
But I love that woman SOOOO much.
Now I lay me down to sleep
I pray the LORD
My soul to keep
If I should die before I wake
(And on my knees, air would just push out of my lungs, very fast and very hard. “please just kill me Lord. I don’t need a coffin. They can just put me in a black garbage bag and throw me in water. Then the fish will eat me. Then everybody WINS...
Because I’m garbage,
I’m Garbage, that won’t make a mess)
And the whole wide world...
In JESUS name...
We ran when I was 10.
Ran from the “runner”
The last time I saw him was the day before my birthday.
Or the day that I thought was my birthday. We hopped on a bus to go to Disney World!!!
The problem with running, the main problem is that you will slow down and eventually come to a stop.
When you stop running, you will find that the problem has not left your side...
We went to go see the mouse!
And we “ran” straight into homelessness when we got back.
Did you you know you can be “homeless” with a home?
That’s the beautiful part of my story..
You can make One change.
Choose one man.
This man can grab your story, AND COMPLETELY CHANGE THE ENDING!
And your situation can look one way on the outside, but inside...
But HE has to “change” your heart in order for your story to change!
See, the past cannot be changed, yesterday was what it was.
I got really upset at the Sheriffs office because one of my pastors, who has to preach on Sunday, who, had just had his day full of “life.” He came picked me up, and in the freezing cold he’s the same in the burning summer and the freezing cold... he opens and holds my door, he’s a gentleman. I got upset because he wasn’t allowed in the building, then I had to stand outside and answer a list of questions. And if they were afraid of getting covid, why are behind plexiglass that’s SO thick I really have issue just trying to hear what he is saying to me????
I was upset...
But I was super nasty to the man. And when he asked me to slow down answering the questions because I was answering before he asked. “I’m sorry, I’m freezing and you are asking me the same questions I answered so many times.”
In my head I’m saying, “think! I told you I’m here for a form. A form that you and I both know is not time sensitive. If I had covid, the disease that attacks the lungs,
Would I be out here in the freezing cold, so that you can disrespect my pastor, for a piece of paper. with your thick PLEXIGLASS,
WOULD I BE HERE AT 6 pm?
How many of you have told someone off in this season of covid?
Did you repent?
I know, it’s hard...
But I did, for this event...
I was wrong... Not only did I give him attitude, but I kept going and “finished” the conversation in my head.
Romans 12:2 tells us to renew our minds.
That’s saying that if you have a mind, it is YOUR responsibility to renew it.
And if it’s your responsibility, then HES given you the power to do it.
Remember though, the past has been written.
I can’t change what happened last night, but within my control is something even better!
The ability to REPENT, Learn from it and CHANGE!
This is how you move forward...
Changing your heart
Changes you mind
Changes your behavior
Changes your reaction
Changes the outcome TO the situation
CHANGES YOUR LIFE!!!
And I’ve learned that the only way to move forward and enbrace change with JESUS CHRIST by your side. The only way is to let go of my past...
I had to kill it off.
I had to kill the Lois (my mother) of 1989 and bury her and before I can truly accept all of the love that I now have from Christ, with HIS boundaries, and learn HOW to love THIS LOIS NOW.
Does that make sense?
See, in 1989 I was 11. 6th grade... Everyone said, big eyes, big hair.
Ok that’s still the same...
But check this out. I am still Jamie Elizabeth Hardges, same eyes, same hair...
But I’m 42!
I have to say it aloud, because sometimes I forget and I find myself acting like I’m 13...
Because that is when the abuse was at an all time high...
I tried to tell my mother how I felt but she told me that I wasn’t allowed to have feelings. When I got a job and laid a bill, then I could say “I feel”
So I said goodbye to my feelings and I buried them.
Now I am 42 and I find that whenever I get angry or I am triggered in anyway, I become emotionally cold to others feelings and I blurt out anything I want.
I do inappropriate things sometimes because I got stuck,
I’m 42, but the vow I made in an abusive situation, as a child, followed me...
Into the foster system when someone reported my mother for her abuse towards me...
It followed me to NJIT with 2 scholarships, but I stayed in my room all day away from people and played with calculus problems...
It followed me into friendships that fell apart in NJ.
This is when I started asking GOD, what is wrong with me... I had taken the seed of self hatred from my mother and planted it in my own heart.
And friendships have broken here as well. But there are good ones that are still lasting here...
But the day that I eulogized and buried my feelings was epic!
And it followed me...
It follows me.
To the gym,
to the doctor,
To the gym,
I LOVE CHURCH!
To the gym
To the doctor
But, I have decided...
Let’s decide TOGETHER!
To bury that mundane monotonous past.
Ask GOD out LOUD, so the enemy can’t claim he didn’t know. Declare that you want to move forward with CHRIST!
Remember that no man can serve two masters.
You are the LORD OF YOUR PAST!
If you let YOU go and bury the way “you want things to go”, GOD NOW HAS ROOM to come IN!
But you can’t have both!
GOD will NEVER FIGHT YOU FOR YOUR THRONE, for a place...
In your heart...
But if you lay it ALL down with GOD...
I have never played poker before but I have seen parts of it.
Someone can be dealt a hand... ALL 5 fingers, and get so excited that he throws his all in! This is them saying their hand is so good that they are willing to bet everything, and on one episode of “Friends” Ross and Rachel played. betting they’re friends belongings, betting their hand, because, what I hold IN my hand is so good!
I’m willing to even bet with what I don’t have!
GOD HAS EVERYTHING!
AND HES BETTING ON YOU!
He went all-in when HE sent JESUS HIS ONLY SON JUST FOR YOU!
The chips are down...
HIS bet is placed
Now it’s all up to you!
What’s IN your hand?