Saturday, January 31, 2009

Meet LaToya Stevenson Watkins author of In Love with Losers


Peace In The Storm Publishing is proud to introduce LaToya Stevenson Watkins, author of the forthcoming In Love with Losers.

LaToya Stevenson Watkins, Dallas native, has been reading and writing as far back as her memory carries her. She received her B.A. in Literary Studies from University of Texas at Dallas and is currently enrolled in a Masters program at Southern Methodist University. She has been published in Thought magazine as a contest winner, Work.com as a freelance writer, and TWINS Magazine as a contributor. She works as an editor at the Schlager Group Inc. in Dallas, Texas. LaToya resides in Plano, Texas with her husband, three children, and three dogs. She is currently working on her second book, Dorothy.


LaToya’s debut novel, In Love with Losers will be released by Peace In The Storm Publishing in early 2010.

Friday, January 30, 2009

An Open Letter of Civic Awareness to Christian Ministries by Brian Ganges






This is an actual letter that I wrote and am sending to Christian ministries across America as of January 8, 2008. I encourage you to read this letter and forward it to any ministry that you think may benefit from this wake up call.



Dear Ministry Friends:
My name is Brian Ganges (known as BG on my website and radio show) and I am a born-again Christian who resides in Houston, Texas. I have authored several articles and I run my website called B.G. Street (http://insightfortoday.blogspot.com/). The site is dedicated to providing a fresh and insightful Christian perspective to many of today's issues, such as: current events, politics, health related topics, economics, relationships, and principles for daily living.




I provide people with relevant information, so that they can think critically about that information, and make sound, reasonable and objective decisions for themselves and their families. I am not a heckler; I am not trying to solicit your ministry for support; I am not trying to change or criticize your ministry; nor am I endeavoring to be a divisive accuser of the brethren. My purpose is to inform and to bring perspective to an important issue that affects all of us: civic awareness.




As one of the Lord’s vineyard workers, I view other ministries and thank God that there are others fighting the good fight of faith and promoting the Gospel in unique ways to the glory of God. The Great Commission is a general work, but I believe that God strategically places us in different areas with a common goal: to be salt, light (Matthew 5:13-14) and the ground and the pillar of the truth (1 Timothy 3:15).




As I observe and interact with our society, I am becoming very concerned about God’s church and the ever-diminishing role we seem to be playing in the civic framework of this nation. America’s roots are clearly Christian; and the community leaders of the 18th and 19th centuries had to be overt and admitted Christians in order to run for any political office.




Today, that is not the case; we have some of our most popular and trusted Christian leaders, each creating factions within the Christian community by supporting different Non-Christian and/or Christian political candidates with ideologies that are not Scriptural.




Moreover, many of our most popular and influential leaders don’t even express their thoughts on policy, nor do they articulate the full counsel of God concerning our civic duty. Many of America’s pulpits are silent and many Christians are left to get very biased information from a myriad of unreliable sources (i.e. the mainstream media). Well, the Bible (the law of God) and the US Constitution (the law of the land) are not silent on policy. For the “salt, light, and the ground and the pillar of the truth” (Christian leaders and laypeople) to be uninformed does not bode well for Christian ministries who are responsible for training and teaching the saints according to the Word of God (Ephesians 4:11-15). Many laws are being passed on the city, state and national levels that are affecting us in adverse ways, such as: The Patriot Act, the Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act, eminent domain, and the Law of the Sea Treaty.God spoke through Hosea that His people perish for a lack of knowledge (Hosea 4:6). Furthermore, 1 Chronicles 12:32 states that the tribe of Issachar had understanding of the times; and I truly believe that New Testament believers should also understand the times, cry aloud and spare not (Isaiah 58:1). If Christians aren’t informed and actively involved with our natural world on God’s behalf, then who will ensure that goodness and righteousness is represented in the way that we are governed? Who is going to be the salt, light, and the ground and the pillar of the truth where politics is concerned? Many ministries are 501(3)(c) corporations and are restricted in what they can teach, but there are other legal ways to inform God’s sheep and lambs, as Jesus instructed (John 21:15-17).Politics governs our lives through various means:·




  • Taxation (who pays how much)


  • Banking/Investing regulations (proper procedures to handle financial transactions)


  • Insurance regulations (what kind of insurance you are obligated to have)


  • Driving statutes (including speed limits and how to drive)


  • Business and commerce regulations (how you must conduct your business)


  • Education laws (what must be taught)


  • Gun laws (who can own a gun)


  • Health laws (how the healthcare industry is supposed to operate)


  • Childrearing laws (how you can raise or discipline your child)


  • Agricultural laws (how much taxpayer dollars can the farmers get)


Informed and righteous people will ensure that we have righteous laws. I respectfully would like to ask how you, your members and/or ministry partners are informed concerning policies that govern our society. Does your ministry directly inform your members/partners concerning civics (legislation, policy, etc)? Are you partnered with a ministry that stays abreast with current events and/or issues across the political spectrum (not just abortion and traditional marriage laws)? I am not asking with which political party you are registered, or which political candidate(s) you support. The most important thing is that we are all properly informed and that there be no division among us (1 Corinthians 1:10).





I am only doing my part to inform the Body of Christ how important it is to get involved and understand our political process. Since God created the institution of government, it only makes sense for Christians to understand how it works and what it meant for Old Testament believers to be “the Elders in the gate.” Everyone doesn’t need to be an activist; but everyone should be a part of the process to ensure that we have righteous people legislating and executing righteous laws for our society.If you are informing and/or partnering with other people/ministries in order to inform the people of God, then I applaud your efforts. Again, I am not here to be critical, I simply would like to raise the level of awareness in the Church, so that we make sure that the light and the energy that we experience on Sunday morning shines in the halls of justice, as well.I don’t want to belabor the matter, but I did want to introduce myself and respectfully address my concern(s) with ministries across America. Please continue to do the work that God has entrusted you to do with faith and diligence.


Yours in Christ,

Brian Ganges (BG)



BRIAN GANGES is a contributor to the forthcoming The Soul of a Man, learn more at http://www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com/.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Chasing the Wind by Jacqueline D. Moore


Chasing the Wind

People spend a lifetime searching for happiness; Looking for peace. They chase idle dreams, addictions, religions, even other people, hoping to fill the emptiness that plaques them. The irony is the only place they ever needed to search was within. ~ Unknown

Scripture:
I, the Teacher, was king over Israel in Jerusalem. I devoted myself to study and to explore by wisdom all that is done under heaven. What a heavy burden God has laid on men! I have seen all the things that are done under the sun; all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind. Ecclesiastes 1:12-14 (New International Version)

The book of Ecclesiastes teaches that us a life not centered on God is purposeless and meaningless. Today’s lesson is about how some people can begin to put too much emphasis on “stuff.”

Sometimes we are so busy chasing after money, success and concern over what other people think about us, that we start looking for satisfaction in all the wrong places. The things that we begin to believe are the most important things in life, are the very things that we begin to chase after.

When we chase after fame, fortune and the opinions of others we are essentially saying that we have total control of our lives and that we don’t trust in the plans that God has for us. This is not to say that obtaining certain things in life is wrong or that we should feel guilty about it, but rather realizing that the collecting of things will not necessarily lead them to the road of happiness. Recognizing what is really important; God, family, and friends are more important than things.

Learning to embrace where you are in life, is sometimes more important than embracing the things that fill our lives. Recognizing where you are in your spiritual walk is often more important than the journey. Learning to enjoy who you are is more important than trying to impress others.

Saints of God, having things is not the most important thing in life. Having God and people who love you is far more important than any material thing that you could ever have. Having peace of mind, body and spirit is something that you will be able to keep with you always.

The most important lesson that any of us could ever learn, is to put God first in everything and He becomes our windbreaker.

Be Blessed

Prayer:
Father God, we come before the throne of grace with praise and thanksgiving on our tongues and in our hearts. We come asking Lord, for peace that passes all understanding. We come asking for strength to stand in the face of adversity. But most of all, we come asking with humbled hearts and minds, that You would hear our prayers and our petitions. Master, we need You to speak to the winds of adversity that are blowing against us, peace be still. We come asking that You hold on to our hands and the storms of life toss us about. We come asking that You would hide us under the wings of Your salvation as the roaring lions draws near in an effort to devour us. Lord, we ask that You would keep all of our families, friends, co-workers and brothers and sisters in perfect peace this and everyday. Bless us right now in the name of Jesus. Our prayers are not complete until we let You know just how much we love You. Our prayers on not complete until we sing songs of praise to You alone. Lord, we lift Your name on high, we give You all of our love, all of our praise and sing songs of praise all the day long. Thank You Lord for one more day. Bless You Lord. Hallelujah, Praise God thank You Jesus, Amen.
Learn more about the Beautiful and Inspiring Jacqueline D. Moore at www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

From the Root to the Fruit by Lorraine Elzia




ADQ (A Deeva Quickie)
From the Root to the Fruit

One simple thought….

From the Root to the Fruit

What a wonderful colloquialism that I only wish I could claim as my own. – But I can't. At a recent MLK celebration, the keynote speaker was Bishop T.D. Jakes…the saying is his.

Uttered from his lips and forever entwined in my psyche.
Six words.
Alone they mean nothing, but put in proper context, they are the beginning of a phenomenal road map by which we should govern our lives.

In an eloquent, gregarious and expressive manner, Bishop Jakes linked the plight of Martin Luther King Jr. to the achievements of President Obama (oh, how I love the way that title rolls off one’s tongue.) Bishop Jakes indicated that in order for us to see the Fruit that is Obama, there had to be a Root, which was Martin Luther King Jr. One could not be possible without the other. Both are essential tools to get us to where we need to go.

Among the thunderous applause which engulfed a room filled to capacity, as everyone around me stood and shouted praises, amens and a few, “I know that’s right”, I sat nodding my head in agreement while taking notes. (I'm a writer…it’s what I do.) I scribed his powerful words, detailing the images around me, chronically my thoughts, describing my feelings and constructing analogies in my head. Through Bishop Jakes, I wanted to touch Barack and get a whiff of the smell of Martin. I needed to inhale and absorb both as if they were part of my current and physical existence; part of my earthly being. I could stand and applaud later, but at that moment I needed to touch the hem of the garment that made up both of these men...for me, I simply needed to personalize in words, the moment handed to me by God. I needed to make a lyrical scrapbook of what I was feeling before it became a faint and fleeting memory in the back of my mind. At that moment I wanted to document the events and environment around me so that I could relive it at a later time and for several more times like it to come.

The man before me was a man who days before had the privilege and responsibility of spiritually feeding a hungry sheep, albeit a sheep in the form of the man who would be the next president of the United States. Before me was the man, who had the task and honor of soothing the soul of our President mere hours before Barack would accept his role. Spitting out a simple thought of connection was a man who had accepted the challenge of shepardizing the spiritual guidance of a man who will lead us all and yet, Bishop Jakes humbly stood before a large crowd that had gathered to see him and celebrate a dream interpreted several decades earlier by a simple man named Martin. Oh, how six degrees of separation never felt so surreal.

Eagerly, my senses hung on Bishop Jakes’ every word. He did his job well and earned his appearance fee for the evening while stirring the crowd to feel connected, at least for a moment in time, with Martin and Barack. Mission accomplished in making a connection that all in the room could personally feel and take home to marinate on the significance of the moment that the 44th President of the United States brings and how his journey was paved by the blood, sweat and tears of others including, but not limited to Martin Luther King Jr. The moment should not be lost on any of us, the connection should be obvious to all of us, and the significance should be acknowledged even by the worst of us.

But where Bishop Jakes started, I challenge you to take a step further.

“From the Root to the Fruit”

As my favorite Pastor used to say, “I ain’t talking about nobody…just talking about what I’m talking about.” But for a short moment in time please contemplate this:

What roots are you nourishing? What seeds are you sowing?

For all things to blossom, they must first take root.

Take a moment and run with that thought.

If you want your life to blossom….
You must plant seeds
They must take root.
And then and only then will you see fruit.

In order for there to be a harvest, you must first tender to the crop.

Want a healthy marriage?
Plant the root of fidelity and communication.
Want respectable children, the kind you can be proud of?
Plant the root of knowledge, wisdom and discipline.
Want a successful career?
Plant the root of ambition, experience and skill.
Want accomplishment of your dreams?
Plant the root of steadfast endurance in chasing them.
All things are possible if you follow the road map and remember that in order to get the Fruit, you first have to have a strong, healthy and fertile Root.

Peace, Favor and blessings to you all,
Lorraine
Aka A Deeva


LEARN MORE ABOUT THE FABULOUS LORRAINE ELZIA AT http://www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com/!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A Change Has Come by Jacqueline D. Moore


A Change has Come!

All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another. ~Anatole France

Scripture:
"When they sin against you—for there is no one who does not sin—and you become angry with them and give them over to the enemy, who takes them captive to a land far away or near; and if they have a change of heart in the land where they are held captive, and repent and plead with you in the land of their captivity and say, 'We have sinned, we have done wrong and acted wickedly'; and if they turn back to you with all their heart and soul in the land of their captivity where they were taken, and pray toward the land you gave their fathers, toward the city you have chosen and toward the temple I have built for your Name; 2 Chronicles 6:36-38 (New International Version)

Today marked a time in History that many will call to remembrance. Today, America consummated the dream of many that was born on the backs of a few. Today, Barack Obama, became the 44th President of these United States and just in case you didn’t know, President Obama just happens to be a black man.

This event held extreme importance because it marks the acceptance of a man based on the content of his character and not the color of his skin. We the people collectively joined voices and said, “YES WE CAN” elect a man based on what we perceive are his strengths as apposed to false and long outdated misinformation that stated that a black man was less than a man. A black man who galvanized a nation; young and old, rich and poor, touching the hearts and minds of ALL races to become the leader of one of the greatest countries in the world.

Today we cry tear of joy because, AT LAST A CHANGE HAS COME!

Be Blessed

Prayer:
Jesus wept. Amen.
Jacqueline Moore, www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com. Enough Said.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

There is Value in the Valley by Jackie Moore




There is Value in the Valley

As you walk through the valley of the unknown, you will find the footprints of Jesus both in front of you and beside you. ~ Charles Stanley

Scripture:

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, (Or through the darkest valley) I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:3-5 (New International Version)

A few years ago, I had the pleasure of reading a wonderful book by Iyanla Vanzant, titled, “There is Value in the Value.” It was a very motivational book about how going through a valley has its benefits. Now the dictionary defines a valley as; A broad area of low-lying land situated between hills or mountains and usually having a river or stream flowing along its bottom.

Many Christians will talk about a valley experience. A valley experience can mean that you are at a low point in your life. A valley experience could be the loss of a job, loss of loved one, financial difficulties, Strife in your relationships, or a wayward spouse or child. A valley experience can even be a life threatening illness. Each and everyone one of us will at some point in our lives, go through a valley experience.

However, as Ms. Vanzant so eloquently reminds us, there is value in the valley. What this means is that sometimes, being in a valley can actually benefit us. Going through a valley is just a journey from one point to another. While we may not actually enjoy the journey, there are many things that can be learned along the way.

For example, if we take the time and look around our valley, we often see things in our lives more clearly. Maybe that relationship we fought so hard to keep wasn’t really the type of relationship God wanted us to be in. Maybe the job that we lost actually prevented us from spending time with our loved ones and actually stressed us out to the point that we couldn’t really enjoy the prosperity that it brought. And as strange as it may sound, sometimes we create our own financial difficulties by not trusting God with our finances and seeking possessions that don’t necessarily bring us happiness.

Whatever valley you may be in right now, take the time and learn from it. It may be a lesson in humility and obedience. When you are at a low point in your life, always remember to look up.

Learn to appreciate all of your blessings in the valley.

Be Blessed

Prayer:

I love the Lord. He heard my cry. And even as I walk through the valleys of life, He is with me always. Goodness and mercy are at my side. He covers and protects me in the blood of the Lamb. Thank You Lord. Father we come asking that You would give us the strength, the peace and the patience to make it through whatever valley we may go through this day. We come asking that even as we find ourselves in the valley, we know that we are never alone. Lord, as I look around me and see others in the valley with me, may something that I do or say; encourage them to stay their course. Father, I ask that You would touch my brothers and sisters who find themselves in that valley. Lord, let them know that they too are never alone. Thank You Father for allowing us to come before Your throne of grace one more time. Thank You Father, for listening to us, one more time. Thank You Lord, for blessing us, one more time. Praise His name, saints of God. Lord, we lift Your name on high. We sing songs of praise even in the valley low. We will sing songs of praise, when we reach our mountain top. Thank You Lord, Bless You Lord. Hallelujah, praise God. Amen.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Be Encouraged by the Phenomenal Jacqueline Moore


Be Encouraged

"When you feel like giving up, remember why you held on for so long in the first place." ~ Unknown

Scripture: The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. A righteous man may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all; he protects all his bones, not one of them will be broken. Psalm 34:18-20

Periodically we will all be faced trials and tribulations. From time to time it will seem as though God doesn't hear or just won't answer our prayers. Then, there are times when we are just plain old tired of fighting against this world.

Recently, I was reminded of a situation that the Prophet Elijah went through. Elijah was a prophet who did great things in the name of God. (See 1 Kings). One day Elijah was sent out to destroy the prophets of Baal. He killed all 450 prophets. When Jezebel heard what he had done she vowed to have him killed as well. Elijah, a great Prophet of the Living God, who had done great things in the name of God, just the day before, became scared and ran away to hide.

This Prophet, one of God's chosen, became scared of one woman. Even though God had manifested himself in Elijah's life and used Elijah to do many things in his name, Elijah ran. Even though Elijah knew God for himself and had seen his power first hand, he felt helpless at the threat of one queen Jezebel.

I use this story because it reminded me that even those who have been on the battlefield for the Lord and have been used by God will become tired. I am reminded of not only Elijah, but of King David and of Job as well. But you know what saints of God? Even in their moments of darkness God was still there. Even when it seemed that there was little or no hope, God was still there. Even when it seemed that they couldn't go on another day, God was still there.

So Saints of God, remember, God is still there! He will never leave us nor forsake us! He hasn't failed us yet!

Be Blessed

Prayer:
Lord, we come to You seeking strength, guidance and a little more patience. Father, forgive us when we feel weak in our faith. Forgive us when we seem to give up and give out. Lord, we know that You are not a God of confusion. You have told us that You would never leave us nor forsake us. Thank You Lord for that word. Father, hide us under Your wings of salvation. Cover us in the blood. Keep us nearer God to thee. Lord, we ask that You would continue to bless our brothers and sisters. Those who are saved and those who have yet to get to know You for themselves. Lord, we pray for financial breakthroughs today. So many need so much, have mercy Lord. Breath on us Lord, cover us Lord, Have mercy on us Lord. We love You Father God and we are thankful for what we do have. We praise, uplift and bless Your holy name. As we submit our prayers and petitions in the name of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior, Amen.
Jackie Moore is the author of the forthcoming Serving Justice. Find out more at http://www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com/

Friday, January 16, 2009

Hiding in the Shadows Contest - Win a $50 VISA Gift Card!



To enter, pre-order a copy at www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com and your name will be
automatically entered into the drawing. The sweepstakes begins January 16, 2009 and
final submissions are due by 11:59 (Pacific Time) on January 30, 2009.

2 lucky winners will receive a Visa gift card worth $50.00
on the day of the release of Hiding In The Shadows on Feb 1, 2009.

All winners will be randomly selected. US and Canada residents only.

Hiding In the Shadows Sweepstakes

Sponsored by Claudia Brown Mosley

I. How To Enter

Pre-order necessary. Visit www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com and pre-order Hiding In The Shadows. The sweepstakes begins January 16, 2009 and final submissions are due by 11:59 p.m (Pacific Time) on January 30, 2009.

ALL WINNERS will be randomly selected.

All winners will be notified on or around Jan 31, 2009 the winners will be notified by e-mail.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Doing Right in the Midst of Wrong: Obeying God Rather than Man by Brian Ganges


And when they had brought them, they set them before the council. And the high priest asked them, saying, “Did we not strictly command you not to teach in this name? And look, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this Man’s blood on us!” But Peter and the other apostles answered and said: “We ought to obey God rather than men. —Acts 5:25-27

Chaos occurs when there is the absence of order. Order is established by implementing the timeless principles of God’s Word to a situation. Kingdoms have come and gone. But the Word of God shall remain forever (Matthew 5:18). How can we institute the inerrant truths of the Word of God to the governance of our societies in order to produce the types of results that would produce the results that the Bible promises? Do we pick and choose the laws we want to use? How should we respond? This leads us to the age old question: What do we do if the laws of the land are contrary to the Word of God? How do we reconcile this situation? There is a very simple answer to this, but it will take courage and integrity to sort it all out and implement the changes necessary to transition our society to a more freedom-based and Biblical standard.

Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.-- 1 Corinthians 11:1

We are never to forget that we must obey those that are in authority over us, i.e., parents, teachers, police officers, community leaders, etc (Hebrews 13:17). However, it is important to note that the authority that they have been given to rule over us ultimately comes from God. Do we ever have the right to circumvent that line of authority if those that rule over us abuse their God-given authority? The above-mentioned Scripture gives us a clear answer: we are only obligated to follow Christ; so those leaders that are following Christ can expect those that he/she is leading to follow him/her.

I had some discussions with some people recently and I questioned them about some historical people and events. There have been people in history that broke the law of the land, but these people were catalysts for positive change, and were fighting for a morally good cause. The question is: Were these people wrong for what they did, since they broke the law of the land?

The following is a small list of people and events to which I was referring:

Slavery was legal in the USA. But was Harriett Tubman wrong for freeing the slaves via the Underground Railroad?
God is a God of love and compassion. Was Jesus wrong for whipping the moneychangers and throwing them out of the Temple?
It was against the law to speak out against the king. Was John the Baptist wrong for publicly declaring that Herod shouldn’t be involved in immoral sexual acts?
It was once illegal for an African-American person to sit in the front seat of a public bus. Was Rosa Parks wrong for refusing to move to the back of the bus?
It was against the law for anyone to disobey the laws of the British king. Were the Colonists wrong for fighting back against the British Crown in order to win their independence?
Jesus broke the law by healing someone on the Sabbath. Was Jesus wrong?
The Nazis were exterminating millions of Jewish people. Should the German people have obeyed the Nazis and turned in the Jewish people to the Nazi regime?
Were the Jews wrong for not telling King Herod where the baby Jesus lived?
Finding answers in science is a good thing. But should we let the Government do whatever it wants? Were the Willowbrook State School and the Tuskegee experiments moral?
If unjust laws exist, should we exercise or surrender our right to protest/petition our government for a redress of our grievances?

Abe Lincoln declared “government of the people, by the people and for the people shall not perish from the earth.” The US Declaration of Independence states: whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. See, it is up to us (the common citizens)! We can’t just rollover, play dead and accept whatever is given to us. The Law of God has been established, and if our elected officials don’t want to line up with the true principles of Law, then the Declaration of Independence has given us the recourse to abolish and re-establish Government as we see fit. The Laws of God trump all laws of man.

As I stated in the opening portion of this writing, we ARE NOT obligated to follow unlawful laws. Unlawful laws are in effective, not even laws at all. They must not be allowed to be implemented as law, and any unlawful law on the books-SHAME ON US!!!!! Again, we are only obligated to follow laws that come from God and in line with what He has already said. It doesn’t matter who the authority is, we are only obligated to follow God’s Word/Authority. There might be some natural consequences to bear for not obeying man’s laws, i.e., jail time or death. But we (as a nation of people) have let things gone too far the wrong way, and it’s time for things to be corrected. We need to stand up and stop pretending that we are accomplishing the Will of God.

Today, when someone stands up for the truth, that person was either ostracized or looked upon as some strange voice in the land. Well, a voice that stands for truth was commonplace when this nation was established. Over time, however, we have slowly let the moral fiber of this nation erode under the guise of tolerance and social acceptance. What a cop out! We are not called to compromise our faith, convictions and standards; we are called to be the standard bearers.
People who blindly obey are like sheep being led to the slaughter. We should be obedient and honor God’s Word (which is a good thing). But we honor the authority set above us, by doing so in line with the Word of God.

What many people don’t realize is that authority is not a Carte Blanche blanket privilege to invade my privacy and be a dictator in our personal life. A pastor has authority over the congregation at the church; the police have authority to enforce the civil laws if people break them; parents have authority over their children until they are adults; teachers have authority over their students at school, and that’s as far as it should go. We are sovereign individuals, but if we don’t know that, then we must take what those who rule over us give us. Folks, please don't be reactive to tyranny, be proactive to liberty. Live well!

Brian Ganges is a contributor to the forthcoming The Soul of a Man: A Triumph of My Soul Anthology. Learn more at insightfortoday.blogspot.com and http://www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com/.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Remembering Love by Jackie Moore


Remembering Love

It was a beautiful star lit night, as she sat, rocking in her swing, alone with nothing but her memories. The crickets sang a song of a time that has since long past; their melody stirring emotions that had long been forgotten.

The song she heard reminded her of her true love. The man she often missed who had awakened her forgotten passion. He was her betrothed, her husband; the man she had pledged to love till do they part. As she thought about that vow, she realized that when she spoke the words aloud, she thought they meant physical death. It had never occurred to her that death of a marriage could also be symbolic. That death could mean the demise of love and passion. She didn’t realize that death could mean the ending of a way of life.

She just didn’t know that death could mean the transformation of one being into another.
He was the man she had loved all her life. The friend she had first met when she was just a young girl of seven. Never realizing that the fresh young boy standing before her was her soul mate, her che; the one person who would grow to know her better than she knew herself.

He would be the man who would touch her soul. He would evoke great waves of passion within her with just a touch, a word, or a simple look. He would be the man who would push her past her self-inflicted limitations and force her to see herself through his eyes; the eyes that saw her as strong, invincible and capable of doing great things. He would be the one who would both elevate and tear her down. Only he had the power to change the dynamics of her world with a simple caress or gentle whisper in her ear.

He would be the one to rescue her when the world tried to destroy her. The one to tell her she was beautiful when she felt unattractive and useless. He was the one who put her back together after her heart had been broken by another. He gave her the self-confidence to recapture the resiliency that only comes with youth.

He made her feel desired and wanted when she felt old and ugly. Reaching out to her and touching the very core of her heart where a wall of bricks had been built. He faced that wall and carried away the bricks one at a time until the wall no longer existed. He taught her that it was okay to love again, to trust again; to be one in spirit again. He gave her the courage to find and love herself even when it seemed that no one else ever would.

Yes, her true love had come and gone several times over. He was a caregiver, a lover and a friend. He would break her heart; put it back together; only to tear it apart when she would find herself alone, yet again.

As she sat on the swing, listening to the song of love that was being sung by the creatures of the night, she realized that her true love had held many faces. He was the young boy of her youth, who had simply moved away. He was the man she had married, who decided one day that marriage wasn’t for him. He was the lover who came to restore her self-worth. He was the man who showed her what it meant to be a woman.

Yes, her true love had been many men, yet one. He would forever be her memories of love, their faces running together a collage of faces, but still only one. Although alone, she realized she would never be by herself. Not as long as she held tight to the memory of her one true love.


Jacqueline Moore is the author of the forthcoming Serving Justice. Find out more at http://www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com/

Friday, January 9, 2009

Excerpt: Hiding in the Shadows by Claudia Brown Mosley



Dressed to Kill
“Where the hell are you Edmund?” She mouthed the words as she paced back and forth staring angrily at the phone. It had been three hours since she left a message with his secretary for him to call her.
“I hope that useless, sorry excuse for an assistant got my number right.” She held the scissors tightly in her hands to the point that the skin on her knuckles turned whitish in color where they griped the handle. She raised both her hands above her head before bringing them down hard and stabbing the magazine on the wooden table in front of her. Frantically, she ripped the publication to shreds. She continued slashing and ripping and slashing and ripping until her anger-induced frenzy was interrupted by the ring of the phone.
Gently placing the scissors on the table besides the destruction she had just created, she ran her fingers through her hair and stood up straight trying to make herself more presentable for the call. As she picked up the phone, she lowered the tone of her voice in an effort to camouflage her current psychopathic state.
“Hello.” She managed to pull her emotions together long enough to sound normal.
“Did someone from this number call my office about a case?” Edmund seemed irritated by the anonymous nature of the message left for him.
“Yes, Mr. Fox, I called. I need some legal advice and a friend of mine highly recommended you.” She was excited about hearing his voice and curled her fingers around the phone cord while talking to him.
“What kind of legal advice do you need?” His voice was still ringing with irritation, but that did not matter to her, it turned her on none-the-less.
“It’s an extremely sensitive matter that I don’t want to discuss on the phone. I need the best lawyer in town, and I was told you’re the best.” She knew that catering to his ego would soften his mood.
“I think I have a few openings tomorrow. Call my secretary in the morning to set up an appointment, and I’ll talk to you tomorrow….Ms…?
“Jones. My last name is Jones, and I’ll see you tomorrow.” She hung up thinking how generic the fake name sounded, but it was the best she could think of on the spur of the moment, and at least it got her an appointment to see him.
As the line went dead she thought to herself, “You will get yours Edmund! When it’s all over you will wish you were never born!”
She picked the scissors up and stabbed them into the table once again. On the other end of the table were several more magazines, she had been collecting them for the project at hand. She grabbed another one and began flipping through the articles for the words she needed. Cutting them precisely from an array of different shapes, sizes and colors; she finally had enough clippings to construct the message she wanted to send.
“You’ve messed with the wrong woman Edmund. I was “One Too Many for you.”
The white gloves were lying on the bed. She grabbed those first and slowly, one by one, put them on, smoothing out the wrinkles as she slid her fingers into their properly fitting spaces, ensuring that there would be no fingerprints as evidence of who the sender was. After she had composed her message of hate, she put her reading glasses on to review her handy-work.
“Perfect! You Shit head! She thought out loud, grinning mischievously. “Squirm in your skin like the fucking snake that you are.”
Pleased with the mental head game she was about to play, she used a wet sponge to seal the envelope, leaving no DNA evidence, before she addressed the letter to Edmund. Feeling content in her actions, she walked to the closet and pulled out her outfit of torture; canary yellow in color with matching shoes. It was form fitting and event fitting as well. The perfect tool to make a man drool as someone ended his life.
She smiled as she put the wig on first, smoothing each strand with care, and then removed the plastic dry cleaner protective bag from her weapon of mass destruction. She slid the snug fitting dress upon her exercised obsessed sculpted body. The dress fit her like a glove with all the prominent areas being accentuated in the manner she desired. Standing in her full-length mirror, looking at the vision before her, she murmured to herself, “You’re dressed to kill. Edmund won’t know what hit him. Stupid bastard!” She grinned an evil grin from ear to ear, thinking about what a wonderful life it would have been if only she could have tamed her “dog.” If only she could have kept Edmund in line, life would have been fine. But that was a different life…in this one she would put him in his place. She would “train” him at all cost, even if that meant over his dead body.
Sliding her size seven and a half feet into the matching two inch heels, she was euphoric at the overall package she had created.
Sexual but deadly.
She had accomplished her goal.All dressed up with no one to kill “just yet”, she opened the scrapbook of Edmund that she had been nurturing into a shrine for years. As she placed the book on the bed next to her, she seductively ran her gloved fingertips across pictures of Edmund and the written chronicles of his successes and his life. With the help of an inside informer in the justice system, she had cloned Edmund except for his physical form. She laid down next to his accomplishments tapped down under plastic, and rubbed one hand over the scrap book while rubbing her breast with the other hand. As she moaned in excitement, she thought to herself, “It’s not the real thing, but for now it will do.”
Pre-order your copy of HIDING IN THE SHADOWS by Claudia Brown Mosley at www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Life can Change in an Instant by Jessica A. Robinson


Dear Diary,
I know it's been a while since I last wrote you and updated you on my progress but I figured since I had a few moments to steal away from everything for a second that I would write you today. Since the last time I wrote you, my life has changed drastically. I have lost my mother since the last time I wrote you and that was two months ago. My mother passed away on Oct. 21, 2008 and it was a complete and total shock to us. It took my brothers and I by suprise because she wasnt even sick and even though she had diabetes she wasnt sick at all. In the aftermath of her passing, life is very different for me. Life has taken a completely different turn and I have such a different outlook on life because she was the only parent that I had left. We lost our father fifteen years ago to cancer and our family unti consisted of me, my twin brothers, and our mother. It's just crazy because I never expected in a million years that I would lose my mom and this sudden.

What's even more crazy is that I lost my mother right before my book is to be released and although that may sound selfish on my part it's not. It's just sad that she won't be here to see my actual book come out and hold my finished product in her hands. I remember how she was so proud that my book was coming out and I was helping her move toward her goal to becoming published just like me and It's unbelievable that she wont be here to share this with me. One thing I have learned is that life is a precious thing and it is very important the things we choose to do with it. My mother was a woman of God and I know she went to Heaven and while she was here she touched many lives as an elementary art teacher. Just seeing how she lived her life inspires me and I would like to share some things with you. Are you living your life to fullest? Are you doing what you can to live your dreams so you'll have no regrets later on in life?Speaking from experience in losing loved ones there's one thing I do know for myself to be true. once your life is gone you cannot get it back and my personal motto that I've recently adopted is to "Give life all you got" because you never know when your time is up.

Another thing I want to share is that life can change in an instant, are you prepared for the sudden change? I know no one wants to think about dying but it is an important thing that needs to be addressed. Do you have life insurance? Do you have a will? Do you have money set to the side to pay for your funeral? Do you have things set in place so your family knows who gets any money you may have? These things are important to think about because I'm only twenty-five and I've had to think about every single question and believe it or not, I had to pay for my mother's funeral so please take time out and discuss these things.

You'll thank yourself later. My mom was only 56 and she was young so you're never too young to start planning everything so your wishes can be carried out.Now I'm more determined than ever to make something out of myself and this sudden tragedy has been propelling me forward toward my destiny. I know success is coming to me. I just have to be patient and wait on it. I'm trying to live my life in a way that there will be no regrets and value my life even more than I did.Just some things to think about.

If you have time, please go and check out http://www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com/ and check out all of the hot releases that are coming out in 2009, including "Holy Seduction" which will be available in March 2009!

Until next time,

jessica aka Lyric

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

The Missing Link: A Generation of Men by Brian Ganges

The Missing Link: A Generation of Men

“A little less complaint and whining, and a little more dogged work and manly striving, would do us more credit than a thousand civil rights bills.”

--W.E.B Du Bois

We live in a society where perception is everything. The perception may not be the truth, but the impression or vibe that you exude to others is basically how you are labeled. Now before I continue with this article, look at the above photo. How would you react if your daughter brought home one of these characters? These types of children (typically 35 years old and under) are what the media wants us to believe is what the typical black man is all about. Well, I am a black man and I am opposed to this stereotypical shadow being cast on all of us. Sure I like relaxed jeans, sports jerseys, Timberland boots and wearing my hat backwards, but some of these styles and attitudes are just ridiculous. Some of us feed society the ammunition that is killing our community, and until we realize what is harming us, many of us will continue to inject our communities with this poisoned mentality.

During this current economic downturn, I was fortunate enough to land a very good paying job. It was an all white office staff before I arrived, and the only black and Hispanic employees worked in the warehouse. After I successfully completed the two-interview process, the boss told me that he was very impressed with how I carry myself, how I dress, how well-groomed I am, how articulate I am and how well I know the business. This is very encouraging because I did pray about this job. But prayer wasn’t enough; I had to present my natural value to this company and they saw it and appreciated it. What do you think would have been the outcome if I walked into the interviews late with my pants hanging down, gold chains and teeth, braids wrapped in a doo rag and referring to the boss as “Homie.” They probably would not have interviewed me. But this is the type of sentiment that some of us have in the black community, and it is viewed as acceptable or “keepin’ it real” in some circles. I see that the way that I carry myself reflects God, my familial upbringing, and it is also a reflection on my race. Unfortunately, some people judge the whole (race) by a part (individuals), so I want to do my part to represent us well.

It is really a shame and an embarrassment to all black people that some of us don’t have enough decency and couth to act responsibly in public places. Well, this article will help us to see where things went wrong so that we will no longer make excuses and correct these mishaps sooner rather than later.

Men-The Spiritual Head Has Been Cut Off

I want each and every reader to understand something very important: this type of behavior and the portrayal in these photos is not cute, nor is it funny. This article is not about black vs. white, or male vs. female; it is ultimately about good vs. evil. The Bible teaches us that God created man in His own image and likeness (Genesis 1:26-27), and He also created man to be the head of the wife, as Christ is over the Church (Ephesians 5:23). Now the issue here is authority and who has the say so as to how society goes. It is clear from creation and from New Testament example that man is the familial authority. Now if you read (Genesis 3:1-7) there is an exchange between the serpent (Satan), Adam, and Eve; the authority/dominion (Genesis 1:26 & 28) that God gave to Adam was what was in question. Satan is a spirit being (no tangible body) and he can’t just go around killing people, even though his purpose is to kill, to steal and to destroy (John 10:10). Humans have authority to be on the earth and we have the natural ability (a body) to physically operate in this realm. But Satan is not manifest in this material world as a human. So if he has no authority to operate in a material world, as far as being a natural human is concerned, then how does Satan fulfill his purpose in killing people, stealing and destroying things? He uses the (bodily) authority of willing vessels that will submit to his purpose. In other words, if someone decides to go and rob someone and kill them, Satan has found a willing vessel through which he can work. That person didn’t just have a coincidental thought. That thought had an origin, and that origin is the enemy, Satan.

Why is this important? It is important because this is precisely why Satan is out to destroy the human male specie, especially the African American male. If Satan cuts off the head of the family (the male) then the remaining structure (the family) will die. Look at some of the males as you walk through the malls. Can you see some of them as the head of a family? Remember, the enemy’s job is to steal, to kill and to destroy (John 10:10). Have you noticed some of the scathing statistics that plague our race? Illegitimate births; multiple illegitimate births; the abortion rate; percent of single mother homes; HIV and AIDS contraction; heart disease; violent deaths; gang related incidents; deadbeat dads; the exploding prison population; increased welfare recipients, and a host of other devastating statistics that prove to be a disaster for our community. These results have nothing to do with the white man or the government. These statistics have everything to do with a race of people who have succumbed to a belief system that is counterproductive. Let’s not forget that other races have struggles and issues as well, but proportionately, the black community as a whole is doing a poor job of being responsible and setting the next generation on the right path.

What is a male? Quite simply, a male is any creature born with a penis. What is a man? A man takes his rightful place in God, in society, in the family, and in regards to his responsibilities. We need our males to become men. But if we don’t have our men showing the young people how to become men, then we are rowing upstream without a paddle. There are some instances where the male influence in the home suffered an untimely death, and that is unfortunate. But most cases of a fatherless home are deliberate demonstrations of irresponsible behavior and abandonment. Are you a male or are you a man? Are you faithful to your wife? Do you provide for your family? Do you honor you parents? Are you a good employee? Are you a law abiding citizen? Or are you looking for a mother figure to take care of you? Are you always borrowing someone’s car and cell phone? Is someone always treating you out to eat? Are you always broke? Are you driving a beat up car with no registration or insurance? Do you have a bank account and a legitimate driver’s license or some sort of legal identification? Are your parents still taking care of you (an able bodied grown man) and you’re pretending that you are helping them out? If you have children, when is the last time you paid child support? Are you making babies all over town and using that as a badge of your manhood? Are you walking around with you pants hanging down showing your underwear? Is your greatest aspiration to be a rapper or to play in the NBA? Do you spend all weekend playing Play Station, smoking Black & Mild’s, and sipping on Hennessey? Do you have an expensive grill and/or rims worth more than your car? Real men do not behave like this; real men are responsible and handle their business first, and then they enjoy the entertainment. If some of these questions are a reality to you or to someone you know, then you and/or they have some things to consider.

Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keepeth the law, happy is he.—Proverbs 29:18

The head (the man) is the one that provides direction, insight and leadership. The above-mentioned Scripture is fitting because it shows us what the enemy is doing. He is trying to and is succeeding at destroying a race of people, and if he can cut off the familial head, the family and ultimately our society will die. Can your natural body live without a head? No, it cannot. Well neither can families survive without a head. Some families do make it by the grace of God, but it was not God’s will to have a fatherless or a motherless home. God made it so that a man and a woman could procreate and raise the child in the nurture and the admonition of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4). But without a head, which is the location of the brain (the housing for the mind), there is no future or direction. So with men being ever so absent in the lives of our women and children, it is easy to see why the black community is in such shambles. From the days of the Old Testament, the familial blessings were always passed down from the father to the firstborn son. God was referred to as the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of the Patriarchs, the men (the head of the family)!!!!!! How can men be a blessing to the family if they are not present? The men, in times past, were the “Elders in the Gate,” the ones who were the seat of authority in the homes and in their communities. But we have lost sight of that. But the enemy hasn’t and he is fully aware of what is going on. Every time our people act like a bunch of monkeys, the enemy’s will is being done; and the males do so in the name of being cool and “keepin’ it real.”

This leads me to ask the question: aside from the mothers who are raising these children alone, where are these children getting there images of males to emulate? Unfortunately, if you have noticed the pictures in this article, you will see some of the pathetic answers to that question. These moronic celebrities and wanna-be thugs that we see are the pseudo role models to which many children look. I see groups of pitiful African American males walking around with gold teeth, tattoos covering their bodies, and clothes too big for them walking around as if they are the latest fashion statement. They are emulating the idiots they see on television, i.e. Lil John, Lil Wayne, Jay-Z, G-Unit, T.I. and the rest of the no-talent phony rappers of today. The sad news in all of this is that these sorry individuals are not the only choice for role models available for our youngsters. These are the pseudo role models that the media chooses to set before them; and since the family unit is broken in many instances, most children have very little guidance in choosing friends or role models. So they choose who looks cool, or popular or rich. Some criteria! Huh? Well young people are unskilled, hence the reason they need guidance, and hence the reason our community is going astray because the authority (the male) is in jail, trying to be a rapper or busy being cool somewhere. All the while, a school teacher, a local doctor, or a respected business owner can fill in as a positive community role model. This situation presents a perpetual dilemma for our posterity.

Women

This leaves the women in a very precarious situation, especially if they have to raise a male child. Since most households are without a stable male figure, the pressure is truly on the woman if she is going to make it and raise her children properly. I do applaud the good women who were and are acting as the support post for the family. While that pillar of our community (the man) is down, the good women need to rise up in a big way until the man can get back on track. In his absence, the women have to pull double duty and do whatever they can to be the nurturing, caring mother, and to supplement the absence of the positive male influence.

Unfortunately, I see that many women are apart of the problem when it comes to the behavior of many males. Allow me to explain………some men are like dogs and children; they only do what you allow them to do. The males that are acting like thugs and looking like monkeys are doing so because there are a lot of women who accept that type of behavior, and that, in turn, encourages males with low self-esteem and no identity to continue to emulate the circus acts that they see on television. There is one thing that we have to remember about the people seen on television, those people are actors and paid very well to portray that persona. They are not struggling to survive in this economic downturn. They are wealthy and do not live in your neighborhood. They can dress and act the way they want because they don’t have to go punch a clock and report to anyone’s office at 7am and work for 10 hours a day, like a lot of us. This is where many of us are disconnected from reality.

Now back to the women who accept the thug mentality. These are the women that are ruining it for the good women out there. They put their stamp of approval on males who carry themselves this way for a myriad of reasons: women feel secure around them; some women think that the rugged look is sexy; these guys are somewhat adventurous; and whatever other reasons make them attractive. So now we have a market for thugs. But never mind that a lot of these guys are very disrespectful towards women and treat women who allow it like sex slaves and servants. The question that we should be asking is: what kinds of women condone thug behavior? I know some women who are into thugs and a lot of these women have very low self-esteem, they are very loose women, they are needy women, and they are not the type of women that you would want to introduce to your parents. Now, here is my advice on this matter because men and women respond to one another. If the all of the women would band together and wouldn’t give their phone numbers or any attention to these disrespectful thugs, then these thugs would change. Either they would change their behavior and act respectably, or they would become eunuchs. If there is no market, the supply goes away. Women you have more influence in the fashioning of our society than you think!!!! Start making these males and the silly counterparts of your gender accountable because they are embarrassing our race before the world.

“The black man must step forward, but that doesn’t mean that black women have to step back.”— Representative Shirley A. Chisholm, U.S. Representative, 1969–1983, Democrat from New York

Motherhood is an integral part of raising successful children. Mothers bring unique qualities to childrearing that fatherhood cannot, and vice versa. But an excess of anything is too much. One mistake many mothers make is that they are afraid to let go, especially of their boys. In many ways, that failure to let go is manifest in many mothers defending their children no matter what they do. This is wrong because you have to know the personality of your child and face the facts if your child has issues. If your son is a crack head, then it is what it is. If he is a gangster, then so be it. If he is a thief, then call him what he is. You pray for him, you love him, but you don’t support or defend your children in that foolishness. You get him some help, if he genuinely wants help! Stop pretending that sweeping everything under the rug will solve the problem. Denial just makes you look stupid, because everyone on the outside has come to grips with reality, except you. Wake up, mama!!!

I have seen too many mothers defending there sons while they were accused of crimes or behaving irresponsibly. The mother’s responses were: “not my baby!” “y’all stop pickin’ on him!” “they’ll do anything to tear the black man down!” Of course injustice exists, I am not na├»ve. But when mothers don’t let sons grow up, or be accountable and face the music of their crimes and actions, then they are delaying the inevitable. They are opening the door to a “billy club” upside the head for “baby.” Stop calling these teenagers and adult children “baby,” these are not babies; however, many mothers are allowing them to mentally remain, as such. It was cool when they were 3 yrs old, but no “baby” stands 5’ or 6’ tall. Stop buying these boys clothes that don’t fit them, the grills (which are an excuse for them not to brush their teeth), the chains, and stop letting them come outside with a retro 70’s afro without combing it. These excuses for sons are not born out of love, but out of motherly insecurity. Some women are so afraid to let “baby” go, that they would rather cripple the child and keep him tied to mama’s apron strings, rather than prepare the child to leave home and be a productive member of society. This is a shame before God. This doesn’t mean that these mothers are bad people, it just means that these mother’s have issues with which they need to cope. If these mothers don’t let go, these boys will never become men, they won’t know how to properly relate to a wife, and they won’t know how to properly raise children. What does that all mean? It means that a dysfunctional family trend is in motion, and it needs to stop now, because the black community is dying.

Today is a dating market for men. All of my male friends are either married or going to be married. But a lot of my female friends are either waiting for the right guy to come along or are utterly frustrated with the low-quality of males they encounter. I know of at least one instance where a young lady chose the lesbian lifestyle for a while, and I cannot begin to tell you know how many women I know use sexual toys to take the “edge off.” Why are these statements important? It is important because when you have one thing out of order (in this case the black male), it always causes a chain reaction and messes up other things associated with it. For example, if I made a perfectly straight line a mile long, if I was out of line just 1/8” in one foot, in a mile I would be out of line over four feet. How’s that for getting off course? That is just a natural illustration about what happens when even the slightest deviations occur. The man and the woman have deviated in the black community; and look where we are, as a people. What is going to happen in the second mile, and the third mile, etc., ad infinitum?

Children

In the last third of this article, I would like to deal with the progeny. The endgame here is the youth: the next generation. If the male (the head) is gone, and a percentage of the women are trying to “stand in the gap and make up the hedge” (Ezekiel 22:30), then all you have left is the product. Why? If you can get the attention of the children, you can either use them to influence the parents or you can retrain them to veer away from the teachings of their parents. This is precisely why I said this issue has nothing to do with black vs. white; it has everything to do with good vs. evil. There is a spiritual war going on for the mind and souls of humanity (Ephesians 6:12). I know that it may sound strange, but there is no sense balling your fists up and trying to fight the wind. You have to know your enemy, know your weaponry and defend/attack. Many people in history, good and bad, concur with my analysis. Adolf Hitler, in his autobiography Mein Kampf, basically stated that if you enticed and attracted the women, they would bring their children and the men would subsequently follow. See what happens when things are done out of order? But again, the end game is the children.

Educator John Taylor Gatto states:

“Schools train individuals to respond as a mass. Boys and girls are drilled in being bored, frightened, envious, emotionally needy, generally incomplete. A successful mass production economy requires such a clientele. A small business, small farm economy like that of the Amish requires individual competence, thoughtfulness, compassion, and universal participation; our own requires a managed mass of leveled, spiritless, anxious, familyless, friendless, godless, and obedient people who believe the difference between “Cheers” and “Seinfeld” is worth arguing about.”

John D. Rockefeller’s General Education Board, Occasional Letter Number One, 1906 stated:

“In our dreams. . . people yield themselves with perfect docility to our molding hands. . . . We shall not try to make these people or any of their children into philosophers or men of learning or men of science. We have not to raise up from among them authors, educators, poets, or men of letters. We shall not search for embryo great artists, painters, musicians, nor lawyers, doctors, preachers, politicians, statesmen, of whom we have ample supply. The task we set before ourselves is very simple. . . we will organize children . . . and teach them to do in a perfect way the things their fathers and mothers are doing in an imperfect way.”

Educator John Taylor Gatto:

“A mass-production economy can neither be created nor sustained without a leveled population, one conditioned to mass habits, mass tastes, mass enthusiasms, predictable mass behavior.”
Professor Benjamin Bloom, called the “Father of Outcome-based Education,” summarized it well:
“The purpose of education and the schools is to change the thoughts, feelings and actions of students.”
Do you understand it now? It’s the children that are the ultimate targets of the commercials and propaganda on television and in the schools. Look at the pictures in this article. This is what our young men and women are seeing and emulating. This is not positive; this is a cry for help from their souls. They are begging for help and they don’t even know it. They are looking for an identity, acceptance, and a natural voice of expression of who they are. Fortunately, they are not what they see on television, but unfortunately, not many men are connecting with the young people who are emulating the thug life.

Again, this has nothing to do with skin color; this is a spiritual matter. If you don’t realize this, the system will continue to falsely label our children with A.D.D., to write our children off as a lost cause, and continue to expect young black males to go to jail or die before their time. We are being bombarded with manipulation, and the images of TV celebrities are no different. Many of our young people can’t see what’s going on, and that’s why responsible men and women need to be resurrected in their consciousness, by the power of Christ, so that we can put a world that is currently upside down, right side up. If the media can continue to get our young people to aim at the lies they are selling, they will hit the bull’s eye every time: nothing but destruction.

For he who sows to his own flesh (lower nature, sensuality) will from the flesh reap decay and ruin and destruction, but he who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.—Galatians 6:8

Even with an in tact mother and father operating in a functional family, we still must have some very vital components in place. Here is a guideline, but not an exhaustive list of things to do to ensure a proper foundation and the installation of sound self-esteem principles in parents and children. First, Jesus Christ must be the ultimate object of the heart. If you want God’s best for your life, then you have to surrender your life to Him. Second, live a right life before your children, so that they have a real person to emulate. They look up to you, believe it or not. If you make some bad decisions, admit it, and make amends. Kids need to see that humility too, so that they can emulate that when they fall short. No one is perfect, but make sure that you run to God in times of trouble (like David did) and don’t hide from Him (like Adam did). Third, endeavor to live a balanced life. Often times, Christian equate quoting Scriptures with living right in God’s eyes. Wrong!! Yes, we must know the Word of God so that we know how to do things God’s way, but if we don’t know God Word in context, or if we don’t know how to apply God’s Word to our particular 21st situation, then it’s useless to us. Fourth, make sure that you always look to the One that can never fail-Jesus Christ. I know many people who are Christians, but they put their pastors or someone else on a pedestal. Only Jesus is your light, salvation and redeemer. Fifth, don’t make excuses. Everyone has been given something called common sense; it’s just simple, natural knowledge. Don’t act like you don’t know the difference between right and wrong; decency and immorality. Everyone has a conscience and the Bible says the Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment (John 16:8). However, if your heart (not your flesh) doesn’t condemn you (make you feel guilty) then you have confidence to act before God (1 John 3:21). Now that’s what I call keeping’ it real. Sixth, you have to know and teach the youth that God has created each person for a Godly purpose (Jeremiah 29:11).

“Each one teach one, each one reach one.”—African Proverb

Those of us who have a good identity structure and are responsible people should make a conscious effort to reach out to the lost. All are welcomed into God’s fold, but in particular I am after the male specie. These pictures of sad, young males are disheartening. They all have a sour look on their face and they all believe that they are tough, cool and trendy. How sad it is when the external demeanor is the defining aspect of who you are. If their parents, guardians and responsible family members could only see how ridiculous they look, they might able to speak some sense to them. Obviously the people being photographed don’t care, but that’s why those of us who do care need to reach out, before more of these young males end up like Tupac and Notorious BIG. All the while, people like me are seeing these young people slide down razor blade mountainsides headed for an alcohol lake. Lil Wayne, T.I., Snoop Dog and Adam “Pacman” Jones are not our friends and they are not on our team. These are entertainers whom the system is giving a pass so that they can make enormous amounts of money to be losers and to convince our children to join them. Stop buying their clothes, their music, and stop cheering them on. You are indirectly putting fuel on the fire when you do this. Let’s grow up and be responsible.

In conclusion, the black community is its own worse enemy. The males, in particular, have forgotten the struggle of slavery and civil rights, and have been reduced to what you see in these photos. This is the losing team. This is the team that would cause me to “go off” if my daughter brought one of them home. This losing bunch doesn’t have to stay the losing bunch, but while they are the losing bunch, that isn’t an excuse for us to support or to encourage their losing effort. If we do, we all lose.

If we don’t stop blaming the white man and the Hispanic man, and start looking at our own actions for a change, as a people we will be no better than nomads. Everyone has a part to play and everyone has fault in this equation: the men are absent and/or on the wrong path with this ghetto thug and “keepin’ it real” mentality; many women pacify irresponsible males and encourage irresponsible behavior to further cripple the black man; and many kids are following in the footsteps of sorry people who are set before them. We can control our own destiny with the decisions we make. But now the ball is in your court. I am tired of seeing these silly little boys in the mall with their oversized pants, out-of-control afros, gold teeth, and their dirty looking selves embarrassing us. As you can tell from my choice of words, I am very upset with the state of affairs in the black community. But I am channeling my anger in a manner that may awaken others to sound the alarm and make changes, as well. If I didn’t care, I would just go to work, make my money, go home and watch Sanford and Son and play PlayStation all night. But I can’t do that. God has people on His mind and He keeps telling me about what needs to be fixed. God loves the thugs, the hoochie mama’s, the intellectuals, the bankers, the police and military, our politicians and He even loves the people who work in the mainstream media.

Let’s endeavor to never be that missing link, and if you are the missing link, then endeavor to reverse the curse, and pull others out of the fire. God is counting on us. Our families and our communities are counting on us. Even the relatives that haven’t been born yet are counting on us. We are laying foundations for those who will succeed us. We cannot fail. If we fail, we are putting future generations behind the 8 ball before they even arrive. Let’s make some positive and permanent changes in 2009……….Live well!!!!

BRIAN "BG STREET" GANGES is powerful, passionate and insightful and is a contributor to the forthcoming THE SOUL OF A MAN (Triumph of My Soul II), visit http://www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com/ for more info on the anthology and visit http://insightfortoday.blogspot.com/ for more info on Brian Ganges.


*Peace In The Storm Publishing replaced photos of certain rappers, athletes, etc, with photos of a promising, courageous and uplifting Black man - Brian Ganges*

Monday, January 5, 2009

New Beginning By: Jessica A. Robinson


New Beginning By: Jessica A. Robinson


So here's to the new year

It's time for a new beginning

It's time to embrace the new

And let go of old feelings


Time to press ahead

And let go of all the excuses

Cut loose from all the haters

Cuz their so called support was actually useless


Now is the time

To plan out all your goals

The bible says write the vision and make it plain

And next thing you know

It'll show up


What you can dream can actually become your reality

Even as fast as you can speak it

If you can speak it, think it, dream it

You can acheive itSo in this new year

Strive to live your dreams

Don't let anyone throw you off course

No matter how hard your dream may seem

Take this new beginning

For a fresh start

And really start living
JESSICA A. ROBINSON is the author of the forthcoming Holy Seduction. Find out more at www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Thank God for Your Gift by Jacqueline D. Moore

As we begin another holiday season, we still have much to be thankful for. I know that many of us have been faced with trials and tribulations this past year, but they too, shall come to pass. As we look forward to a new year and to new leadership in our country, always remember to keep God at the forefront and He will always be the compass in what seems like the darkest of hours. May God's grace and mercy continue to rain down on each and everyone this Holiday Season.

Thank God for Your Gift

Remember, Each day comes bearing its own gifts. Untie the ribbons. ~Ruth Ann Schabacker

Scripture:
I wish that all men were as I am. But each man has his own gift from God; one has this gift, another has that. 1 Corinthians 7:7

Saints, has there ever been a time when you became jealous of someone else? Did they have something that you desired? Money, looks, prestige?

Do you ever wish that you had someone else’s talent? Maybe their husband or wife? Do you ever feel jealous because someone else who didn’t work as hard as you got the promotion or acknowledgement?

Sometimes, it will appear that life isn’t fair. We work so hard at our relationships, in our careers and raising our families and more times than not, it seems we just can’t get ahead. We look around at other people in our lives and they seem to be doing so much better than us, with little or no effort.

Well, today I am not going to sugar coat it. Everyone is not created equal. There are specific reasons for it all. Some by our own design and some are according to God’s plan.

God has a desire and a plan for each of our lives. It doesn’t always coincide with what we want, but rather, what God wants for us. God knows what we can handle and what we can’t.

Our gifts, both spiritually and in the natural, are all from Him. They are meted out according to his will. So remember, this, don’t be jealous of what others have accomplished or have gained in this world. God has a special gift, just for you.

Be Blessed

Prayer:
Father God, we come before the throne of grace to thank You for what You have given us. Lord, I know there are times when I feel that I deserve more, but I stop and realize that more isn’t always what’s best for me. I am reminded that I have so much because of You. I have the gift of eternal life through Your Son, Jesus Christ. As the seasons change and the nights become dark and cold, I am reminded just how blessed I truly am. I have a home, food, friends, and most of all, the gift of love. Love of family and friends. I have hope for tomorrow and I have the gift of salvation. I realize that the things of this world are just for a season. I will rejoice in my season, for I know that the harvest is near. Thank You Father, for my gifts. Thank You Lord, for my health, my strength and my life. Thank you most of all for Christ Jesus, it is in His name that we pray. Amen.


Learn more about the awe-inspiring Jacqueline D. Moore and her forthcoming novel, Serving Justice at http://www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com/.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Happy New Year from Elissa Gabrielle!


Reflect upon the year that has gone by.

Remember loved ones and friends.

Contemplate all of the wonderful things that have brought you joy.

Recall the Happy times and how they've enriched your lives.

Remember God is good all the time, and ALL the time, God is so very good.



Dear Friends,


I am a living testimony of how magnificent God is. The power of prayer in our lives is real. This year, ask the Lord to help you to make it your best year ever. Dream big and don't be afraid to chase your dreams. Make it your mission to remove all the negativity from your life so that you are free to accept all of God's blessings.


Be good to others, better to yourself, and be encouraged.


Have a wonderfully blessed New Year!



Grace & Peace,


Elissa Gabrielle

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Year from Tamara Angela Grant!




2009 is here! We're looking forward to a new president and Peace in the Storm Publishing is releasing some of the hottest books in the literary world! I'm so excited to be a part of the movement! The Cooling Board is a labor of love for me and you'll find it is a must have for your personal library. We've done the age old New Year Resolutions over and over and most of us don't even remember to keep them. So I challenge you to make one goal- one thing that you will commit to acheiving! Put your best foot forward, and go for it. Understand that the only person holding you back is you if you don't acheive your goals! Make 2009 the year that you make things happen for yourself.




Peace and Blessings,

Tamara


Find out more about Tamara Angela Grant at http://www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com/




Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year from S.D. Denny and Cheryl Lacey Donovan!

Happy New Year!



In 2008, Americans elected a man of color into the highest ranking position of our country! Never before have I been so convinced that all things are possible and dreams do come true when you pursue them with passion and perseverance. In 2009, I urge you to follow your dreams, make every day count and never underestimate the power of passion! Wishing you an abundance of blessings in the new year.



S.D. Denny, Author http://www.sddenny.com/









Each January we wish on another a Happy New Year. However, there is nothing happy about our world situation. Peace is an illusion. Crime is at an all time high and so is the cost of living. If we look only at our current situation, there would be no possibility for a Happy New Year. The good news is God wants to create a sense of newness in each of our lives. God desires for us to be filled with a renewed sense of purpose and destiny. The new year offers us a chance to wipe the slate clean and start again. It's a time to look ahead with a sense of anticipation and excitement towards the new things God wants to do in our lives. In this new year seek to serve Christ and His kingdom in a greater way. Know the promises of God, remember God's faithfulness in the past, and realize God's power and willingness to work in your life.

Cheryl Lacey Donovan is the author of The Ministry of Motherhood. Find out more at http://www.peaceinthestormpublishing.com/