Inspirational and thought-provoking messages informed by my faith, ministry in education and community development
Dr. Flowers' Blog
You may be familiar with the quote “some is not a number and soon is not a time.” It speaks to the uncertainty of two words that start with “s.” If we are honest with ourselves, there are times in life like today when the ambiguities of “some” brings us discomfort. Clearly economic crisis, political corruption and turmoil, climate change, poverty, inequality, racial strife, and the devaluing of human life can all be unsettling.
Despite ALL of these circumstances and more, there is The Good News for some of us. In fact, it is more than news, it is a promise that keeps me and others from becoming overwhelmed amidst crisis, injustice, pandemics, and even death. Because of it, in the time of sorrow we do not weep as though we have no hope. We can manifest what many perceive to be a peculiar optimism in troubling times. Our faith is affirmed by certainty of promise that replaces the doubt of “some” with the assurance of ALL.
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 (KJV). ALL things, ALL things, ALL things!!! Every sickness, road block, every set back, and yes even the 17 deaths of loved ones for my family in the last twelve months (three to COVID-19), is included in the ALL that’s working together for my good.
“For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” Romans 8:18 (KJV)
A point of clarification in order! Scripture says, to them that love God. It suggests the possibility of exceptionalism. Do you love God? If the answer is yes, you are halfway there. “He saith to him again the second time, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou me? He saith unto him, Yea, Lord; thou knowest that I love thee. He saith unto him, Feed my sheep.” John 21:16 (KJV)
Simon is asked a third time about his love for God as a reminder of the calling and purpose God had issued to His followers. Feed My Sheep.
Loving God AND doing His will provides you a bridge over troubled waters where poverty, prosecution, policies, preachers nor politics, even pandemics, and ALL things work together for your good.
As we solidify our protocols, adapt our facilities, staffing, and instructional delivery for the reopening of school, I want to encourage the faithful lovers of God who are doing His will; our faculty and staff, our parents, and especially our children.
“For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39 (KJV)
As Simon was being reminded THREE times: If we love God, let’s act like it. ALL does not equal some. ALL is not a number because God’s power is without limit. Had His word said “some,” He would’ve also given us a spirit of fear.
Allow Your Faith to be Your Fuel
Previously published July 18, 2019, still relevant during this time of pandemic and protests.
Good morning God,
Lord we come to you amidst troubling times. Lord help us to apologize to our children. Help us to request their forgiveness for our failure to figure out how to live as fellow humans on earth as it is in Heaven. Lord forgive us for missing the mark sixty years ago when we inadequately pivoted as a nation towards tolerance for one another when we should have embraced LOVE FOR ONE ANOTHER.
Give us this day God as an opportunity to understand LOVE MATTERS. We know this truth to be comprehensive of the value of every life. Help us God to deliver YOUR message to our children during these troubling and seemingly uncertain times. “Love will prevail”one way or another. As it is proclaimed in 1John 4 v 8: You are Love.
God, as we navigate through week after week of turmoil and hardening of hearts please cause us to edit our individual souls to the extent that causes us to live our lives in a way that results in our going to funerals or weddings and not know the ethnicity of the deceased or the couple by the faces nor skin colors of those in the audience because LOVE MATTERS. Let us make sure that no longer can a Caucasian, Latina or African American child be born and make it to adulthood and authentically be able to say they know of no person(s) from other races that truly love them.
God, move us away from using Google as “gospel”and allowing social media to be the dominant source that informs our perceptions of humanity. Let us lean not unto our own faulty understanding but by understanding that LOVE MATTERS.
God help us to embrace and engage each other on Earth as it is in Heaven.
Allow your Faith to be Your Fuel
As our nation continues its experimental journey of ethnicities from across the world for humanity to Love Mercy while perfecting God’s desire for us to Do Justice let us turn to scripture.
John 1:5 The Light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.
It is likely that you are like me...In all the times I have encountered this scripture I failed to notice the words The Light are capitalized. God is The Light and worthy of being capitalized, not just in print but in and through our living.
In our current struggle against injustice, inequality, poverty, and in our quest for equity let us not be deceived. Our nation and the world is encountering undeniable darkness however, The Light remains. The truth is, The Light is within those who have accepted Him. Accordingly, we must not be guilty of allowing the perception that darkness (lowercase d) is overcoming The Light. We are responsible for not allowing the negatives to overwhelm the goodness that abounds us.
Let us demonstrate a ‘Hallelujah Anyhow’ lifestyle amidst the folly, frustrations, and faults that are constantly celebrated and elevated through media. We must continue to proclaim the goodness that overwhelmingly dominates the evil that perpetuates a faulty victory.
I am reminded of a homily from one of our daily chapel services. Dirt was placed in a clear cylinder. A little water was poured in with the dirt and kids were invited drink. Everyone declined. As more and more water was poured in, the presence of the dirt was no longer apparent and the willingness to partake increased. Finally, the presenter drank the water! The message was that dirt represented evil and water was like God’s goodness which cleanses that which is perceived to cause hurt harm and danger.
Let us do our part as we are a part of The Light and darkness has no chance of overtaking us.
Allow your Faith to be Your Fuel
As we approach Mother’s Day, I am reminded of the saying that goes like this....
To have a child is to forever have a piece of your heart walking around outside of your body.
I am also reminded that next to a mother's love the most valuable gift we receive from them are lessons. For many of us, these are lessons that endure the tests of time. They stay with us generations later and trickle down to our children and fan out to those that we come in contact with. This weekend some will be fortunate to have their mothers physically with them and others will be blanketed by the spiritual presence of their mothers.
Whether your mom is still here or has gone on ahead of you to glory you are still a piece of her heart walking around outside of her. Her lessons of the past are looking upon you and they are hoping that you are rooted in the righteous virtues she tried to instill in you.
As we move into a Mother’s Day unlike any we have ever experienced with a pandemic commanding the attention of the world let us all go back to the old landmarks of the love, lessons, and labor they sacrificed on our behalf. Let us dive into the deep well of precious memories that helped to form that which is good in us. Let us use the gifts of goodness that were grafted from loving mothers to help guide us through these uncertain and uncomfortable times.
Just as we found peace like none other when we were cradled in the bosom of our mother’s arms let us now seek solace in THE COMFORTER in this time of confusion, distrust, struggle, suffering, selfishness, and strife.
I am reminded of a line from a song my mother sang in the choir and later remixed by late greats Al Green and Aretha Franklin...
“The Lord will make a way somehow “
None of us know exactly what lies ahead of this turbulent time but just as my mother would assure her five children during troubling times, I say to all who are Believers......... The Lord will make a way out of no way.