Embracing the Burdens We Carry

“Let us go up at once and take possession, for we are well able to overcome it.” ~Numbers 13:30

I read something about obstacles and burdens the other night. It was a parable of sorts in which the young man asked the elderly man what is life’s heaviest burden and the elderly man replied having nothing to carry. I can’t really explain why that struck such a chord with me but it did. I took a few minutes to sit with that statement and really decipher what that meant, in general and more specifically to me. So often we think only of the fact that we have a new problem to face with multiple obstacles to dodge around but I’ve never thought about the reality of the fact that without any problems or obstacles to go through what are we really doing with our lives. I mean if you think about it, when you don’t have any obstacles to face that means that you’re not taking any risks or at least not enough of them. It means that you aren’t being productive to the best of your ability because anything worth pursuing is going to push you outside of your comfort zone, which is essentially going to bring about hurdles to jump over and hoops to propel through.

I had to rethink how I feel about the obstacles and problems that I’ve had to go through in the past and more recently. We always seem to discover how strong we are and how hungry we are for our goals when we are tested and pushed to the brink. I was seeing them as more as something to question as opposed to seeing them as something to embrace. I kept wondering why it was that I keep working so hard to achieve my goals and yet everything still keeps getting in my way. However, after reading that phrase from the young man to the elderly one, I suppose I need to be thankful for those obstacles. Not only do they prove that I am in fact trying and taking risks (arguably not as big of a risk as I would like to be but that’s neither here nor there), but they also push me to keep moving forward and it shows me (in case I sometimes forget) just how much my dreams mean to me.

The thing about obstacles is that they are unavoidable. You can’t really plan to not have obstacles, the best you can really do is strategize the best plan you can to push through those obstacles because they’re inevitable. The problems that we face and the predicaments that we find ourselves having to endure are inevitable but as long as we rely on God and make a plan on how to navigate around the hurdles we face then we won’t ever really fail. Failure means that you never tried and those obstacles that you find yourself weathering through are proof that you did in fact take risks. Remember the saying about Go bringing us through the storms of our lives. Try to also remember that he never said that there wouldn’t be any storms. Embrace the burdens you’ve been given to carry because having nothing to carry at all could be heavier than you realize. Until next time…#BeUncomfortable #BePatient #BeinFaith

 

Jimmetta Carpenter 

Writer/Editor 

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Shutting Out the Noise

Shutting Out the Noise

Let’s talk about distractions! The noise of our distractions can be so loud sometimes that it drowns out what really matters to us. There are so many things that keep people from succeeding and being productive in their endeavors. From friends and even family, to television and other things that aren’t of high priority, the environment we surround ourselves with can sometimes do more harm to us than good.

What can also be a distraction to our ultimate goals are the no’s that we hear and the failures that we endure. The obstacles that are thrown at us to derail our journey can allow us to get distracted. We tend to get caught up in the failed attempts at whatever it is we were trying to get accomplished that we overlook the fact that a failed attempt means that there was an attempt to begin with.

A failed attempt is a lesson for what not to do in the next attempt. People who like to constantly remind you of what you’ve failed at and who try to discourage you from making any further attempts at greatness are just distractions in disguise. I used to get distracted by the no’s and I’ll admit that sadly I was a person who had allowed defeat to make me feel defeated. I’ve been working really hard to make sure I change that. I have been working to not allow myself to fall into those particular distractions because they are not good for my productivity.

Sometimes, as hard as it may be to do, you have to block out the moments of defeat. You have to let go of the feelings of self-doubt that hearing no can bring about. You have to treat those moments in which you feel like you’ve failed as teaching tools for your path moving forward. Don’t be so distracted by the obstacle that you completely miss the lesson that it’s meant to teach you.

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

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Despite My Urge to Give Up…

Never give up

I tell you if it is not one thing it is another and when the devil is busy trying to get in my way he really does pull out all of the stops. So week one and two for me was plagued with technical difficulties that would just hit one by one, back to back.

Last week, while the week started off rather strong with a fair amount of productivity, I had a physical injury that kind of left me unable to sit up and type or write anything. I was in so much pain that it almost brought me to tears to even try and move to do anything. That physiccal injury has unfortunately carried over into this week and although I am trying to ignore the physical injury it is very hard to pretend I am not hindered by it.

It just would seem that there are mini obstacles stacking up in my path like mountains trying to keep me from moving forward. I am pushing through and while my goal will more than likely not be met by the end of November, I will take comfort in the fact that I didn’t (like last year) just completely throw in the towel and say the hell with it and just stop even trying. Last year was a bad year for me creatively and this year has not exactly proved to be much better but I am going to make the best of the rest of the days left in this year and kick 2015 off with these two projects that I’ve been taking on during NaNoWriMo and use them as my positive start for next year. Well back to my writing cave I go, hope all of you who are participating in NaNoWriMo are doing well.

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

My Write 2 Be is…

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I Was This Close To Just Giving Up

Was going to give up 2

I want to give up. I want to just throw my hands up as I am knocked down by life yet again and admit that I’m just plain tired and that I don’t have any fight left in me anymore. I want to just succumb to being average and stop trying to fulfill this extraordinary shit that I thought was my damn purpose in this world. I want to just stop having faith in the future that I can’t see ahead of me because how do I even know that any of that shit is going to happen anyway, just because I believe that is what is meant for me. I want to just say my mother was right and I am never going to amount to anything. I want to just say the hell with everything because I just can’t keep trying anymore and keep continually being disappointed every time I think everything is about to turn the corner and it doesn’t.

But I was reminded by a friend yesterday (we’ll just call him Mr. J) that I can’t think that way. I can’t have a defeatist mind set. I have to just accept what has happened, or the changes that are occurring, especially the changes that aren’t good, determine the solution, and then fix the problem the best way that I can, the best way that I know how. He reminded me that you can’t just let life knock you down and then lay there and not get back up. If I were to do that, then the devil wins and he is smiling because he knows that he overpowered my will to serve out my purpose.

The devil has been extremely busy with me these past few weeks, hell months, and I’ve been told that when the devil is really busy with you, that not only means that you are doing something right but that you have a hell of a victory coming your way. If that is in fact true then my victory is going to be unbelievably sweet. It’s hard when you fall to not just want to stay down because getting back up is hard, particularly when you keep getting knocked back down before you can even catch your breath and get all the way back up.

I couldn’t have wrote this post yesterday because I felt completely defeated and everything in the first paragraph of this post was what I was feeling and what I was going to accept. However I reminded myself this morning that I am not average, nor am I meant to live anything but an extraordinary life. I am not a quitter, I am a fighter by nature and I could never look at myself in the mirror if I didn’t give this absolutely everything that I’ve got and nothing less. My mother is most certainly not right about me because I will amount to everything that God has predestined for me. And I may not have complete and total faith in mankind and the man-made obstacles that are going to fall in my path but I do have absolute faith in God and his power to remove those obstacles when he sees fit.

I would say that I picked a profession that lends nothing but struggle and rejection (at least in the beginning) to it but it was what I truly believe I was placed on this earth to do. It picked me, or should I say God picked it for me. I just had an opportunity that I felt would’ve been changed a lot of things for me, for the better, pretty much snatched away from me. It was made even worse by the fact that the friend who came to me with the project (admittedly because she knew it could possibly be a game changer for me) didn’t fight for me to stay on the project, as I felt she should have. Everyone wants to say that perhaps that was God’s way of saying that opportunity wasn’t meant for me and I’m still very far off from believing that this opportunity wasn’t meant for me but I will say that I am not going to let this new fall keep me down. It is their loss, not mine.

So if you too have been thinking about giving up this week, or this month, I am here to say I understand exactly how you feel. I also know that if you do, you will never forgive yourself and you will always be left with this feeling of what if. The wondering will end up crippling you because you will forever live in the past trying to guess what would’ve happened if you had just hung in there a little longer. Just don’t quit. Don’t give up. Keep fighting because it won’t always be this hard (I have to believe that) and on the day when everything starts to fall in place you will look back on this time period where you had the crazy notion to give up and be thankful that you didn’t. So just hang in there, the victory is coming!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

My Write 2 Be is…

CEO/Writer/Editor

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Oh the Obstacles We Duck and Dodge While Investing In Our Future

“If you make the investment up front, the return will come back later.”

~Bishop T.D. Jakes 

As writers we go through many obstacles, if we’re lucky, before ever really hitting our stride in our career (and I say our, because I am speaking my future successes into existence even though it is not quite a reality yet).  We go through tons of rejection, writer’s block, having doubters and negativity with anyone who doesn’t see the vision, and often times we are our own and biggest obstacle that stands in the way.  

I was just talking to Ms. L. earlier and saying that I really wish that my journey to this success that I know I am destined for could be going a lot smoother and with a few less obstacles to stumble over.  But then I quickly took that back because I remembered something I heard while listening to Bishop T.D. Jakes talk about living your life on purpose.  He talked about making investments in your future, in your purpose, and how sometimes our mistakes and our struggles are our investments.  

They are what make our successes all the more worthwhile.  He said that sometimes “what you think is working against you is actually working for you” and that “it is the digression that causes the progression”.  I suppose that is what is meant when people say what doesn’t kill you will only make you stronger (although it never feels like that when you’re going through whatever it is you’re going through).  Our struggles are in many ways our fuel and motivation to keep going and to keep dodging those obstacles as they come.  

Bishop T.D. Jakes also said that when it comes to making investments into your future “you can never reap of a dividend where you don’t make an investment—you sow first and reap later; you can’t sow and reap at the same time.”  I suppose that I have to be a little more patient as I make my investments and have a little bit more faith that everything will work out the way that it should.  

I can’t honestly say that all of the obstacles along my journey have not had their purpose.  It may not have felt like it at that particular point in time, but looking back on them now, they all, in so many ways, served their purpose.  I think that all of the struggles that we go through are simply just preparation for when our success comes to fruition.  Then we’ll be able to say to anyone who has something to throw at us to bring it on because there won’t be anything that they have to hit us with that we can’t handle.  

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

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The Questions We Ask Ourselves, and God (Part 2): How Did I End Up Here?

“The first step towards getting somewhere is to decide that you are not going to stay where you are.”

~ Unknown  

The way our lives unfold is due to a series of choices.  We wonder to ourselves how we ended up in whatever rough spot we are in but it is often because of the choices that we have made over a period of time.  Not just one choice, because one misguided choice would be simple to bounce back from.  Sometimes it is a succession of choices made that lead us down the path that landed us at that point in our lives. 

But you must then take into account where here really is.  We often get so caught up with the struggle we are in the midst of that we aren’t focusing on realizing what it is we need to do to get out of that moment.  I am extremely guilty of wallowing in whatever overwhelming mess my journey seems to be taking me through.  Sometimes it takes me awhile to stop dwelling on the obstacle long enough so that I can see a way through it.  I usually tend to waste a lot of time asking ‘How did I get here?’ instead of realizing that maybe, for that particular part of my journey, here is exactly where I needed to be.   

Everything happens for a reason and as many times as you will hear that saying, it will probably always take a while for it to sink in.  We give so much energy and time to what we can’t change, the obstacle that is sitting dead center in the middle of our journey.  It’s time that is wasted.  It is time that you can not get back.  And all the while, as you stare at that obstacle wondering why you chose that path to begin with, the obstacle is still sitting there.  You staring at it and questioning where it came from does not move it out of your way.  

Wherever your ‘Here’ is, make sure you don’t waste too much time questioning the obstacle instead of moving through it.  And don’t forget to take the lessons you’ve learned with you to your next stop in the road.  

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

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Having Faith in the Bigger Picture

“No matter how steep the mountain – the Lord is going to climb it with you.”

~Helen Steiner Rice 

I am not a stranger to struggle.  I have been knocked down time and time again and even when I get back up sometimes I get knocked right back down within seconds, but I just keep on getting right back up. 2011 inparticular was a really bad year for me, quite possibly the worst I’ve had, but yet I find myself optimistic for the coming year of 2012.  I heard someone earlier say that this year doesn’t feel any different than the last year but I disagree.  For some reason, to me, this year feels like it will be the beginning of bigger and better things that are to come for me.  Maybe it’s just the optimist in me.  Maybe it’s just sheer faith in God and in the person that he created me to be.  

Every time I go through something my mom constantly asks me how I can be so calm and nonchalant and not be worried about whatever it is.  I tell her that I just have faith that God has got my back and that I’m not walking this journey alone as long as I am doing what he asks of me.  In reality what I want to say is that I am worried (terrified really) when things start going wrong and that I am not really calm about it, deep inside I am panicking.  However, I realize more and more that I have a lot more faith than even I thought I had.  Of course I worry but I don’t think that I am nearly as terrified about things going wrong as I probably should be.  

It’s because I have so much faith.  Not only do I have an enormous amount of faith in God, but I have faith that he knows where I will end up (it is his plan after all) and just the trials and tribulations that I need to go through to get me there.  Everything I come up against challenges me but it also strengthens me and obstacle by obstacle I realize that I am stronger than I ever thought I could be.  

For anyone who knows me, they know that I am not the religious type, per say.  I don’t go to church (although deep down I feel I probably should) but I am a very spiritual person.  I don’t always get why certain struggles have to be placed on my shoulders and I admit that I get frustrated because I am that person who likes to know that everything is going be alright and hopefully that it will have a happy ending.  However, because I can’t fully see what God’s plan for me is and I don’t know what will be the end result of his journey for me, I have no other choice but to walk the path that he has laid out with faith.  God has already brought me through so much already, so I have to have faith that he will bring me through the rest.  

My message today is for you to have faith.  Even in times of struggle.  Even if there is nothing that is going the way you want it to.  Even if nothing that is happening to you makes sense.  Even if you feel like you can’t get back up and you want to just quit.  Even when you can no longer see the bigger picture for yourself.  You have to have faith.  We are human and we will worry but in the end you should know that God will never let you down.  Until tomorrow…Have faith that you are stronger than your greatest obstacles!

 

Jimmetta Carpenter

Writer/Editor

The Diary: Succession of Lies (Now Available)

Writing as “Jaycee Durant”

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http://unpleasantlyplump.wordpress.com/

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