Getting into the Rhythm even when you dont have Rhythm

Last Sunday durning my church service, My pastor was teaching about the Rhythm of Christmas. I felt it was interesting when he was teaching this in the following perpestive. I wasn’t sure how the music lesson was going to tie into Jesus. I loved the whole thing. I learned that I may never be a drummer, and I would be that one band member that would always be a little off. I used to play in Orchestra our conductor kept our time along with our foot, but I am not sure that it was really a proper etiquette in orchestra; I’m not really sure, moving. Orchestra I understand, but if I were to learn to play the drums I would have to have mass amounts of practice and lessons. Over and over until I got it and it was second nature. Which makes total sense when we apply it to everyday in our lives. Eureka I got it!!

I am one of those musically inclined people, if you want to call it that, I am that person that can hear it and play it to hear a mistake or something is off. I also learned that not everyone has that gift, just like I don’t posses the gift of being a drummer the keeper of time. So keep this in mind as I go through this moment. On a side not I am in constant reminder of the anchor… I need the anchor. (Hebrews 6:19) Jesus is my anchor and reminder to go at his pace, or to slow down and stay grounded with Him.

After church and getting my daily bread, I look back on my notes and the scriptures and I try to apply it to my life. Like really apply it. In this case, how do I stay in sync with God and how can I use the reference to music to understand and apply it.

Here’s my take. When I LISTEN to music, I am able to HEAR the conversation between instruments and media used to create the SOUND. Then I am able to COMPREHENDED what the singer or artist ( If there is one) is interpreting for us to be able to hear what the conversation is all about. Maybe its weird but that is how I hear music. When its a song that touches me, its because I am able to hear the entire conversation of the song and it touches my heart. You know the mood, the feelings, the story. Or I am able to take on my own interpretation of what the song is trying to say. In another words, I am digging in deeper and hearing all the sounds of the story being told.

Have you ever been in a mood that you couldn’t quite put your finger on, and you’re searching for a song to match what you’re feeling and you just can’t find that song? Yeah me too. Sometimes I feel that we can get that way in our lives. Nothing seems to sync up just right and we search and search to feed that moment. To satisfy that hunger. To make sense of what’s happening right? Bear with me. God has a reason for this, and sometimes He is moving the band around, but it is still playing great music, even if we can’t hear it like He does. God calls us to have a relationship with Him and Jesus is the heartbeat. ” He started the heartbeat of Jesus.” Y’all, when my Pastor said this, he put his hand to his chest , Thump thump…. thump thump…Je-sus Je-sus …. Je-sus Je-sus… That made so much sense to me. The gift that God gave me was redemption through Jesus. My thump thump… Talk about mind blown. God is love. Love is God. We often refer to the heart as love. Jesus equals your thump thump. I know right! I know that not everyone will see what I mean here, but this is how it made sense to me.

So my heart calls me for a purpose. So many of us, don’t listen to music the way I do. I know I am not alone, but my perception may not be like others. But we still are all a part of the same band bro. I am just not the drummer. Each of us have a different role to play and a different purpose. So how do we get our lives in sync or rhythm with Him? Well, its a choice I think. I know that I chose to listen to what He is calling me to do. I know that I am to write. That is all I know. I have to listen closely to what I am being guided to do. Even though it scares me, I may be lead by faith and not by sight. (2 Corinthians 5:7 NIV) I may not see the results right away, or hear the music playing at the moment, But I LISTEN to what I am being instructed to do by SOUND so I am able to COMPREHEND what I am to do next and know that the music is going to be awesome. We all have a purpose to fulfill. I know that when I was called to write I had no idea what or how everything was going to work. It turns out that me Knowing isn’t my current instrument to play, my instrument is to be obedient and write. Do the work to practice everyday, some days are harder than others, but I am practicing until its my second nature. Just like so many other things in my life at the moment as you may have read yesterday. I need to do the hard work to get where I need to be in accordance to what His will is.

So the last thing I wrote in my notes was this ” How can you get better Rhythm?” Well, I made the choice to change, to allow Him to do what He needs to do. There is a reason for me to have the purpose in this life because it’s going to matter to someone else that He puts in my path. We get out of sync because of sin and to align with God its going to take a lot of practice. I dont have the exact words that my Pastor used but I feel that I am pretty close. I dont know about you but I certainly dont like going through a hard time alone, I rather have a partner, brother, sister right next to me, and Jesus is right there beside me too, even if I can see Him. I know that He will never leave me as long as I reach for His hand.

My previous blog post, is a glimpse into what I am doing to stay in sync, its hard work, and its a lot of practice but by the grace of God, the support from Jesus,and guidance from the Holy Spirit, My journey doesn’t look so overwhelming. And just like any relationship there’s a lot of work and practice there too. It’s hard for us humans to really understand God’s love for us. Like we can’t even fathom the love He gives us and or many of us don’t even know what that would even look like. but maybe that is for another post later. Nevertheless, He wants a relationship with us. If you could text Him everyday like you would your best friend, would you and what would you tell him? That is what He is wanting. He loves you right where you are today, and who you are today. He is the most trustworthy friend you’ll ever have. He is the dad you can tell EVERYTHING too, and will still love you at the end of the day. So what part of the band is He calling you towards? Are you willing to take His hand and walk with Him through this process, even if its scary? Are you ready to start? Well I encourage you to pray on it ( have a conversation with Him) and I will do the same. We aren’t perfect beings, I am perfectly imperfect made by Him and He loves me faithfully, even when I let him down by my shortcomings but I will continue to the work and practice.

Thank you for reading today. Please feel free to comment, like and share. Please subscribe and don’t miss a beat with me!

Lastly, here is a funny picture of my American Bulldog Tucker. He just turned 4!!

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Pink Panties

Last night, I was texting one of my longest friends of many many moons. Our friendship had a start like no other. I guess that is how a lot of new friendships start. Roxanne is her name. You’re singing the song aren’t you. Don’t lie we all know you are. I just did. We met working at McDonald’s. I didn’t think she liked me, I was right to assume that too. She was super helpful to me while we did work there. A lot of the cooks there would say a lot of inappropriate things to me in spanish and I had no idea, but she didn’t like me. I would find out soon enough.

We both worked with a young man who was her age and a year older than me, named Ivan. She really liked him and he liked me, and I liked another young man. Typical teenage stuff. Well, Ivan asked me out and I didn’t know how to say no, so I started dating him, and I also said yes to the boy I liked. Well, she confronted me, the same day that both of them confronted me. I told her everything and then she told me that she thought I only wanted to get to know her was because I wanted to date her brother. Hmmm no!! Not even in the same field. Then she told me about Ivan and I told her the whole drama that I put myself in. Nevertheless, I lost two boyfriends and gained a friend. All things were smoothed over and we were all able to move along and laugh about it.

So that is how we started being friends. So we were talking last night about all the things that have happened to us over the years. We have been through things that only her and I would find entertaining. Like the one time her and I went to the movies, just to come out and find that her car had been broken into. Her wallet was missing and she knew exactly who took it. I was pretty naive in thinking they wouldn’t do anything like that. But SHE KNEW and by golly she wasn’t going to allow that sort of thing happen to her. We got in the car, and I tried calming her but it wasn’t happening. She yelled in a moment of ” Oh HELL NO,” she said…. ” I am going to kick their ass with a bat and sword!!”  She meant that. I tried to hold back my giggles because she was furious. We pull up to her house and she goes into their garage thing, comes out with aluminum bat and a F-ing sword!!! Now granted she told me what she was going to do exactly but I didn’t think she actually had a sword…. She threw both items in the truck and off we went on a mission to kick these boys butts!! I couldn’t help but laugh… I mean this was really happening. She confronted them and to see the fear they had in their eyes was great. She got her wallet back, they kept the money but she got her important things back. I know for a fact that they wouldn’t ever do that to her again. I know I wouldn’t. I mean a sword y’all!! She went viking on them!

As we laughed about that, we were talking about her brothers wedding in Chicago in 2001. That was a fiasco but one we will never forget. We pulled an all nighter the night before at an under 21 club before we got on the plane. No doze were a part of the diet that night. We danced and had a blast once we were on the plane it was really hard not to fall asleep. When we got to our cross over in St. Louis we found a place to smoke cigarettes. Let me just say this.. They had a special place inside for smokers. I had never seen anything like that in my life, and I have flown all my life to various places, but never have I seen this. We walked in, more like crammed in with all the other smokers, nic fitters in this tiny glass box, as we light up we are on display for all to see, like we were animals at zoo… The looks people give to smokers is pretty crappy, but what did I care I was 18 and carefree of what people thought of me. We make our connecting flight, now, mind you Roxy has never really flown so the sense of urgency was real with her, the worry that flowed through her on that last leg was intense. We finally make it to O’Hare…. I will say this… I will avoid O’Hare at all costs! I really don’t like that airport… it is not user-friendly.

We are both tired, hungry and slightly slap happy. We get our luggage and I call for a cab to come get us. I have been on many transports from airports to hotels and this was the scariest ride I have ever been. I learned very quickly that drivers are ALWAYS in a rush to nowhere. Everyone uses their horns for pleasure as well as for function. I was grateful to make it in one piece. We check in without any issue and we ordered food, that was a complicated phone with two tired teens who just want food and sleep. Then her brother comes in and starts telling us how he doesn’t really want to get married but his wife is crazy and pregnant. That’s the short version. I even remember asking him …” Why are you doing it then?” he just simply stated that she would be shunned for being pregnant and not married. I guess they were already married, but they needed to make it official with her family and his and that no one else knew what was really happening. Her family had no idea she was pregnant. In their culture its was frowned upon in a big way, and he was also white. They were to have a Sikh wedding and all things needed to go smoothly and we were told to keep our mouths shut. Neither one of us liked his wife, she was rude and unkind, unlike her family they were very nice.

Now, with a their wedding we were customer fitted for our outfits. We had the whole nine y’all. I mean the head covering, down to the cool pants and tunics. Lots of gold and bright colors. I didn’t get to see my outfit until the day of. We kind of winged that whole situation, but I will get to that. The food we were served was all vegan, it was hard for us to not eat meat and to be polite. I was grateful to try something new but it wasn’t my thing. It smells so good but doesn’t taste like how it smells. Very deceiving and unfair. But whatever… we made it through. Her family kept us very busy so it was difficult to really get to sight see, but we managed to go to a Bahai temple, it was beautiful. Then it started raining and the walls started filling up with water, that was a new thing for me.

So let’s get to the day of… Her parents and us are hungry for the meats, and we are tired, hot and sticky, but we are ready for this wedding. We get to the brides house and ready to get dressed and that was something …. Her moms dressings were huge!! Her mom is like 4’9 and she was swimming on her. Roxy’s I think were okay, then mine were see through aqua….. See through …. my favorite color in transparent sheer aqua …. I am wearing neon pink underwear… we all just laugh… what else can we do… Nothing. I have to show off my chubby body in my favorite color sheer goodness with neon pink under-roos for all to see. Hundreds of people were at this gathering and I was all to eager to use my head dressings to just disappear. I didn’t have time to be embarrassed, I had no other choice but to own that whole situation. Their wedding was beautiful and went without a hitch. We ate and were all merry but we didn’t stay for the other activities. We wanted meat and to fill our faces with savory foods… okay okay we just wanted a really good burger. That is exactly what we did. I can’t tell you if we changed or not, I just remember eating and being on a meat High!! It was no joke… that burger was the best thing that was in my mouth that day!!

There are so many things that can bring a smile to my face and that is one of those memories for me. I have experienced many things in my life and there are times when I don’t think I live enough and to be honest there are so many other things that I want to experience. I know that I will one day, but I jump at the chance to travel. I love seeing, and experiencing new things, and cultures and places on this earth. I am so happy that I got to be a part of their wedding even though I didn’t approve but I wasn’t the one getting married. The wedding is something that I won’t ever forget, it was truly beautiful and something that I may never experience ever again. The vibrant colors, the closeness of all the families and friends bringing many blessings to the couple. I mean it was absolutely amazing. If you ever get the opportunity to go to a Sikh wedding.. DO IT!!

Now, I will never know if I was ever talked about with my neon panties on that day, but that goes to show you that they respected each other and me in that situation, at least they could talk in the privacy of their homes instead of saying anything to me about it. But damn I am glad I wore good underwear that day… Neon pink panties …. At least I matched and have this shared memory with Roxy.

 

Catch Up Kristal

I catch myself starting my stories off the same way, but today I choose a different way to approach the subject at hand. I have new things to talk to you about and I am not going to shy away like I have been. I will approach this with kindness and grace because we all deserve kindness and grace. The darkness can be the most cold unforgiving place ever! There is not one person on this planet that has not visited that place at least once in their life.

 

I need this for myself right now. I need to able to give myself what I give everyone around me. Recently, I was betrayed by a few people so very close to my heart, and instead of feeling all those fleshy moments of feeling anger and disappointment and staying here giving it power. I have learned that people are not like me and I am not like them. I’m so tired of feeling the way I do towards people. I give grace and always will. I will always find the time to make a choice to forgive, but just as important to know when to let go and not look back.

So, I have to try to find my daily empowerment in all that I do. That includes when I am hurt to find that joy when all the shit hits the fan. I am so done with this season and at the same time I am grateful for the season because I know at the end I am going to see a blessing and get to know me a lot better.

I am learning what my true self-worth really looks like, to have a voice and actually use it. I know that I am worth love, respect and joy just like so many others in my life. I am so grateful that I can say no and not really feel bad anymore. I am not afraid to hear the truth and know my part in things.

I don’t like when people think its okay to hurt others. I will always have a hard time with that. I too feel just as sad when it happens to me, but I am so tired of accepting that its okay for them to do it to me. I almost feel like I have minimized what they have done to me or my family. I have asked myself a thousand times… ” Why is this relationship important to you? Why do you keep holding on?” and sometimes I know that the relationship isn’t a good one to be in and yet I allow the craptastic things to continue. So that is completely on me.

I was a naive young woman who felt that nobody liked her, and I don’t believe that shit anymore. I am okay with people leaving my life now because why would I force them to stay when they clearly don’t want to be there. I am not just talking about past romantic relationships I am also talking about friends, job, etc. I have fought for people to stay in my life and I sit here writing this and I am shaking my head… Why would you do that silly woman! I know better now. I am unafraid, I am healed, I am not crazy, I am awesome, I encourage, I empower, I am a freaking WARRIOR!

I have been through so much in my life and I wasn’t afraid to stand for things that I believe in. So where the hell did start allowing crappy people in my life to control me or tell me whats best for me when clearly they don’t know me? can we say run on sentence?  Just in the last few days I have been betrayed and my privacy violated, and I sat there, mad, and upset and almost immediately I chose to forgive, but I am still knee-deep in the situation. Then I got a phone call this morning and it was one of those phone calls that makes you lose your crap, because you know you’re being a target.  But get this…I know I have a target on my back!! I am doing things that makes me unpopular( doing things that aren’t considered normal 9-5 things) and things that others are too afraid of to do… SO yeah I am going to have that target on my back, and I know that I am strong enough to stand and take it in the flesh and surrender it to God. I know what whatever is trying to attack is because God is working hard and the enemy knows they are about to be evicted. #SorryNotSorry #TeamJesus #AlreadyDefeatedTheEnemy

I know that the people who come into my life are there for a reason, I can discern better if they are there for good or bad, or misunderstood, need to be introduced to God, or whatever the case may be… I know that I need to surrender control and surrender the unnecessary hoarding that I have of people. I am not Jesus and I can’t save people anymore than the next person. I can just influence the goodness and teach how to be wise in some cases. I need to stop allowing myself to keeping people that don’t need to be in my life anymore.  Wash your hands Kristal, its okay and they will be okay because they belong to God not you. I am so tired of being hurt, and I am so tired of thinking of things that I need to do to fix my situation. 10 seconds of courage to say goodbye and many blessings your way. #MovingOn

I am so tired of having the target on my back, but I am able to know that I am loved and furthermore I am good within myself to know I am safe. I am strong enough to say no more, and Not today satan. I know that I am worth it. I know that I am enough. I know that I am not fighting flesh and blood. I know that one day I will successful. I am no longer afraid.

So how does this all tie in? Well, there are many phases in life and I am behind the curve, if there is one. I’m catching up to what others already know. I am done with allowing the bad in and ready to fully allow the blessing in!!

 

What Is That Smell …

This is going to be one of those stories that will either make you or break you … So here we go … I was thinking of the post that I was going to do today… and there is just so much shit that is going on that it triggered a memory… A very embarrassing story but nonetheless a story that is true and needs to be aired out…

The story starts out like this… It’s a cold October night. I am having dinner with my parents with my infant son. I am there to visit but also to receive a car that they have generously given to me. Aren’t I a lucky duck! It was a great blessing because I really needed a car at that time in my life. Anyway, there are certain foods that I ate that night that I knew that I would later regret. Although worth it normally, on this night not so much….

After a great meal and said our goodbye along with safe travel wishes, my son and I were on our way back home… 60 minutes away. Normally this isn’t something that would shock me.. I actually like to drive, I was looking forward to it… Well, It was until I reached the point of no return. That is when things started… it was the beginning of the end for me.

So I am driving through the Jemez mountains and my son starts crying 15 minutes into our trip. Nothing that a little breast-feeding won’t cure, right?! NOOOOPPPE. I pull over and get in the back and nurse him, burp him and love on him. I put him back in the car seat and hop in the driver’s seat, I buckle in and BOOM!! The gut wrenching pain of ” I GOTTA GO POOOO NOW” hits me. I am not quite panicked just yet. I think that I can make it home before it’s all hits the fan .. If you know what I mean….

So I’m driving along doing all that I can to distract myself from the impending doom in my gut. I am singing and just enjoying the distraction, until the pain comes back… you all know that pain I am talking about… Then my son starts crying again… I pull over again.. to see if he needed a diaper change. Now mind you I am just 10 minutes into driving from the last stop. I check his diaper and he is all good, but he won’t stop crying! I check to see if there is something poking him in the car seat, make sure that he seated correctly. I mean I checked everything. Then I started to think maybe he is going through a growth spurt. He was close to the next growth spurt so I nursed him again, and it seemed to accelerate the feelings of having to go even worse!!

Now I have the poo pains and sweats. I feel that I am dying… yup this is how it ends for me… I finish nursing him and get him back into the car seat and off we go again… The wrenching that I feel is down right cruel and to the point where I was just going to pull over in the cold and go in the woods. But I can’t ever bring myself to GO in the woods to go. Not number 2 anyway…  Then I was even considering just going in my pants! I just want the pain to go away! I am desperate! At this point, I am at the half way point home… He starts crying again, and I am self talking my gut down off the ledge… if you catch my drift… I was at the point where you can’t trust a fart. I even turned down the radio so that I hear my own agony.

I pull over once more to see what could possibly wrong again… I am doing all that I can so I don’t mess myself, wreck and ensure that my child is safe. Finally, I figure it out. He wanted his pacifier, and there was a piece of his blanket stuck between his car seat and its base so he was uncomfortable. Success … For the win is me and my son… My son is content and now I can get moving… I have been on the road now for an hour, I should have been home by now. But now I just needed to get to a bathroom … Like 30 minutes ago!! You know those moments where you are so into what you are doing that you drive slower to concentrate… yea that was me that night.

With my son happy I was able to drive and talk to myself to encourage my nether regions to corporate… ” Just wait… you can do this!” or ” Just get to this mile marker…” and ” yay you made it through the last 15 minutes, good job!” I mean it was embarrassing and it was just me in the car. So I finally take the turn to get to my house. I was literally minutes away from a toilet!! My toilet!! And that is when my gut was ” You BETTER HURRY LADY, IMMA BLOW SOON!! LIKE NOOOOWWWW!!” Taking deep breaths and just talking a little louder to myself to distract myself… I am so close… I pull into my driveway… and That was it…. I get out there is hope for me… my body choose otherwise… Right there as soon as I get out my car, it happened, so involuntary.. I was humiliated… I scream for my then husband to get the baby… as I ran into the house, past my oldest son and into the bathroom… My oldest son yells from the other room… ” MOM DID YOU POOP YOURSELF?!” Then came into the bathroom to investigate the happenings, and while I sit on the pot in pure agony and humiliation, he tells me ” Momma you know how to go potty, why did you poop in your shorts?” I couldn’t do anything but laugh in that moment.

Then my husband, at the time, walks in and sees me there, and just laughs, then starts a shower for me. He then asked if I had the sopapillas. I said yes, followed by ” I thought I had enough time.” I got into the shower and he gathered my messed clothes and started the washer. After everything was all said and done… I was able to enjoy the experience of it all. Which brings me here to why this is reverent to the right now…

Shit happens… I went through many stages.. denial, bargaining, wishful thinking, thinking I could out smart the situation, frustration, humiliation, acceptance and finally humor in it all. Once I accepted that this was happening there was no more embarrassment from it really. I was able to tell this story to a few close friends and all my family. It was too good not to share, and now I am sharing this with you.

In the season that I am going through now, there is a lot of things that remind me of this moment. I have to remind myself that I am not in control and there are things that I have to surrender even though I don’t want to. I am able to see through the crap and just allow it to happen, because there is a blessing in it all.  I have a great story to tell, maybe not one that everyone wants to hear but equally entertaining. I find myself smiling because I know that I’m almost “home,” in the sense that I know that this is just a season in my life and that I am growing from all of this.

Once, my focused changed to joy in a crappy situation I was able to see the “Shower,” and enjoy the little moments of fun and laughter with my family. I know that the season will change soon and things are going to be different and a little more mindful of what not to “eat.” and what NOT to eat. Well I hope this story gave you a little giggle, and maybe some insight… I still eat sopapillas  but only if I know I am close to the bathroom…

Just be … 

I give too much because I know what it’s like to not have enough. 

I love hard because I know what it’s like not to receive love. 

I forgive often because I know what it’s like not to be given grace. 

I work harder to lessen the burden of others. 

I feel what you feel so you don’t feel alone. 

I empathize because I’ve been there too. 

I smile to give hope because there is hope. 

I laugh because there is real joy on this planet. 

I speak life because the world can be a dark place. 

I hug a little longer because I wasn’t always shown affection. 

I enjoy watching people grow in their paths It inspires me. 

My heart is overflowing so I will spill into your heart as well. 

I’m in the present because I don’t live in the past and tomorrow is yet to be. 

I help because I want to. 

I understand where your coming from but I enjoying listening when no one wants to give you the time. 

I respect you when you feel you don’t deserve it. 

Servitude is a blessing. Taking care of each other is a blessing. Nurturing each other is a blessing. Praying for each other is a gift. 

When I am climbing to the top I want to help you come with me. 

These things were in my mind and needed to come out to the world. Goodnight now.