to begin, begin…

Like many people in this world, I can be a little too hard on myself. How hard I am on my children to get stuff done and do things right, I am just as hard on myself if I don’t fully accomplish something or make mistakes. I know we’re all human and the way life is set up, it’s not always going to go right, but that doesn’t stop me from pushing myself to do my absolute best in everything I set my hands to do. With that being said, in a previous post, I talked about three things I set out to do this year. Vision Tees and Things was launched, the Vision Connection Party was canceled due to COVID, which was way out of my control, and writing consistently in my blog became almost impossible, so I thought. I started to beat myself up a little when I realized I pressed only one out of three of my goals, but then, I was reminded, the year is not over yet. I still have time to do what I set out to do. All I needed to do was focus and put my time management skills I learned to good use. I have still had orders coming in to be filled, I’ve been looking at ways to have a Virtual Vision Connection Party, and I have been brainstorming ideas for posts for the rest of this year and even next year. I’m on the move!

My encouragement to you today is, with a little less than two months left in this year, just do it. Why wait until January 1st to make a resolution? Most of the time, we make these resolutions, have great momentum month one and head back to our old habits by month two. Some of us don’t even make it week one. Why not start again now? Why not go back to the goal from the beginning of this year? Whether it’s writing the book, launching the business, learning something new, starting the process to buy a house, just start. This time start with intentions to finish strong. Start with intentions to stay focused and keep your momentum. COVID may have stopped the world from moving a little, but we can’t let it take our dreams and goals. I will not be one to allow my goals and dreams to be placed on the backburner again. It’s never too late to begin. Just do it! You got this!

Write the vision, make it plain

Last week, I decided to write out some personal, business, and home goals for my children and myself. I asked my youngest to bring the sheets of paper I wrote them down on to the car one morning. He dropped the home goals in the hallway. The next night, while the kids were getting ready for bed, my daughter comes in my room with tears in her eyes. The conversation goes as follows:

Mya: Mama, I read your goals. I’m so happy and sad.

Me: Why are you sad?

Mya: I don’t know. It’s just..Mama you believe in this for us?

Me: Yes I do.

Mya: I believe too Mama and I don’t care what anybody else thinks. It’s about what you and we believe.

I have heard many teachings about Vision in my lifetime, but never fully understood it until I had to have vision for my own household. When I was in a committed relationship, my mindset was the man has the vision for the house. Once the man who I sought after for vision from was no longer around, I had to learn how to seek vision, goals, and dreams, not only for myself, but for my children as well. Through the conversation with my daughter, I was reminded of the part of the scripture that says, “Make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it”. Why did I never think about my children being the ones to read it and run? Then, I rebuked myself. Ebony, you never let them read it. You never told them what God said. You never told them what your plans were for this house. You just expected them to believe in something they had never read or even heard about. I expected them to believe in me just because I was their mother and head of the household.  Then, I had to think about it. If I had a husband, would I just believe in him for those same reasons without knowing where we’re going? I believe knowing this shows me what my assignment is in the plan; I’ll know what to pray for,  what to seek God for in regards to our household, where to provide strength. This goes the same in your church. I love how my Pastor is very open with us as a congregation about where God wants to take us as a body of believers. He works diligently and seeks from God Himself on making specific moves for the church. He, also, gets direction from God on specific assignments as well. The leadership team has those assignments. Those specific leaders have a team who not only believe in the vision of the set ministry, but the church as a whole. We are all runners. We all have an assignment in different aspects of our lives. It’s on us to hear and read the vision set and get on our jobs to do what’s necessary for it to come to pass. Individually, we have vision. My Pastor says all the time, “We are not supposed to write it, read it, and run.” You’ll risk getting burned out on what your assignment is. It’s on us to write it out and make it plain. Then, God shows who is supposed to read it and run with what He said. Don’t be shocked by who He sends because God can use ANYBODY, even children. So, just write it out. The believers in it will come. Be Blessed.

The Vision Blogger is Still Alive

At the beginning of this year, I had my mind set on pushing my blog, having the Vision Connection Party, and starting my business. One out of three is good! Before the surge with COVID-19, I invested in myself by purchasing two of the items needed to start my business, Vision Tees and Things. I learned so much through YouTube, craft groups on social media, and craft friends, it became hard to focus on one specific thing in regards to everything I wanted to accomplish through my business. I was having my syndrome again. My initial goal was to cut out the middleman and produce my own designs and logos on different products geared towards my blog, but as I started to learn more and do more, my business took a turn for the better. I started to do more than just printing t-shirts. I started to print on mugs, make keychains, customize wine glasses, and so much more. I can honestly say I probably would not have been able to accomplish and master all of these things if I was not forced to stay home with my children when the schools closed back in March. I used our downtime to create, fill orders, learn, and grow.

So, here are a few things I have learned in year 2020:

Don’t Forget Your Ultimate Goal: Your Reason Why

Recently, I sat down and wrote out personal, home, and business goals for my children and myself. In addition to these goals, I wrote how they will be accomplished. Doing this helped me to understand what my ultimate goal was for absolutely everything concerning my life. What am I working towards? What am I looking to accomplish by doing this? What do I want to see come out of this? I believe, wholeheartedly, knowing this will keep me consistent and focused.  I wrote out these goals so I can see daily what I am working towards. Whenever I need a little motivation, I can revert to what I wrote. It’s just like a vision board without the pictures. I remember when I first started blogging. It was ultimately to give people a glimpse of my life through my testimony while motivating through vision. Motivating through vision is my ultimate goal. It wasn’t going to only follow through with the blog or speaking engagements. Now I’ve created a platform where tangible items can be created to showcase that same vision whether it’s through wearing your brand on your chest, drinking out of a mug with your logo plastered all over it, or carrying a bag with a motivational message to keep you moving forward. Knowing and understanding this ultimate goal, for me, keeps me diligent and pushes me to stay the course no matter what.

Time Management

Lord have Mercy! I believe this one was the hardest lesson for me to learn, especially after I went back to work. It’s safe to say I am still a work in progress on this one. Now, if you know me personally, you would agree I can sometimes be a little bit of a procrastinator. Sometimes I can feel I have all the time in the world and wait until the very last minute to get something done. Being a business owner, working a full-time job, maintaining a household with children, all while attempting to have a social life Post-COVID, I was forced to manage my time. I write out a weekly schedule, plan my daily duties, make a to-do list and prioritize by level of importance. Doing this can help me physically see what needs to be done and what needs to be moved around. Through time management, I learned it’s okay to take a break. It is needed. At times, it can become overwhelming having so many responsibilities so it’s quite all right to take a step back and breathe. You never want to get to a place where you are forced to sit down and do absolutely nothing. So, manage the time you have, take care of what’s needed in that moment, and take a pause if you need to, but don’t ever stop going.

Trust God with EVERYTHING

Have you ever gotten to a point in life where your only option is to trust HIM? I have; more times than I could ever imagine. Trusting God goes so much more beyond words though. You can say with your mouth, “I trust Him”, but if you don’t believe God can do whatever you’re asking Him to do for you specifically, it means nothing. There were many times I looked at a situation I was going through and felt I sometimes deserved to stay stuck in what I was in, but I messed around and started believing what I had seen God do for others, He can do for me too and what He has done in my life before, He can do it again and again and again. When I started to live knowing that God can do the unimaginable, the possibilities became endless. I made up in my mind, with everything in me; I would never walk around this earth feeling defeated because I have God. I will trust Him when things are looking good and, most definitely, when life appears bad. One of my favorite sayings is, “Things could always be worse.” Many times, we look at our situation that looks unfixable or unchangeable and forget what we’ve seen before, what we’ve come out of previously. I don’t believe God just takes us through for fun. Everything serves a purpose. So since He’s all-knowing, why not trust Him? What do you have to lose?

Now, we all know this year has been CRAZY and I’ve heard a lot of people say, “I’m ready for this year to be over.” “This year sucks.” I’m not going to lie, I found myself agreeing with them for a moment until I started to look at EVERYTHING I gained and lost. To tell you the truth, this year has been life changing. I don’t regret one thing I’ve done nor do I wish anything would’ve happened differently. I believe everything that has happened was designed to happen to me and for me. I titled this post “The Vision Blogger is Still Alive” because somewhere along this journey of 2020 I neglected my reason why. Writing out my goals the other day awakened something in me I thought I lost and one thing is for sure, I don’t ever want to feel like I lost my passion, my zeal, or my tenacity to walk in my purpose and do what I was created to do. Ever. So, my reason why is springing forth. My Vision is still alive.

“I Have Vision”

Vision Party with “Daddy’s Girls” 2019

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Hello everyone. I have been officially given the name, “The Vision Blogger” by my church sister, Rhoshonda Adkison, after she invited me to host a Vision Party for her ministry called “Daddy’s Girls”, which targets teenage girls, and helps them with life’s daily matters through Christ. Before Lady Rhoshonda brought the idea to me, I desired to do another Vision Party, but I wasn’t actively planning one. So, I felt like her inviting me was God telling me, “Don’t lose site of the Vision”. Plans immediately went into motion and the Vision I had for the encounter was not following through the way I wanted it, but God knew what needed to take place. All we needed to do was say, “Yes” and follow through and through the Vision Party, I believe our ministries, “babies” flourished in that very moment. We have an AMAZING Pastor and church, who allowed us to use the church, we started to promote it, bought supplies, and ended up having an AWESOME time.

photo collage maker_nqrnhu8801982095365190948..pngI started blogging a few years back and my purpose was to, basically allow people into my world and display my growth in the process because I literally had to grow up big time in the past few years. Yes, I was a mother. Yes, I was already an adult, but I would not say that I had fully grown up and, even now, I’m still growing daily. Somewhere in between me becoming an adult, a mother, then, a single mother, I lost my vision of where I was going. I hosted my first Vision Party in November of 2018. Here, we all made vision boards. These vision boards would not just be cut out pictures from a magazine pasted onto a board. They’re not just words or great sayings glued to a platform. They are visual displays of things you want to see happen in your life, things you want to do, places you want to go, or things you want to make better. The scripture I use for the vision parties and, also, my life, is Habbakuk 2:2-3. I like the way the English Standard Version reads. “And the Lord answered me: “Write the vision; make it plain on tablets, so he may run who reads it. For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end-it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.”  So I questioned, how can you tell me it won’t delay but though it’s taking a while just wait for it patiently? I’m learning, daily, our time is not God’s time. We may say, “But God it’s taking so long.” And His word says for the vision is yet for an appointed time. Appointed means decided on beforehand. He knows the plan before we were formed. He knew what was going to be placed in your heart, what desires you would have. He answers more by saying it’s coming just wait on it. Wait on Him, He knows exactly when to produce what you’re asking for. I am learning to trust His timing. What if He gives it to me and I’m not ready? He knows. I just have to follow through with what He says.

4c34c9fc6c06694f8f5ea5e0f912b9253033300861469074118.jpgSo, every morning, I receive an alert when I’m leaving the house that tells me how long it’s going to take me to get to work. If the time given is not going to get me there on time, I check my map to find a faster route. This particular morning, my normal route was going to make me extremely late because of a crash on the highway. So there I was looking for another route to take. I found one that was going to make me late, but not as late as my normal route and typically, the way I drive, I can knock off a few minutes and be on time. But as I’m driving through the route given to me, which is unfamiliar areas, I receive a phone call. On my phone, I can follow the map as long as I am going the exact route given to me from the beginning. But I made a wrong turn and my phone failed to reroute me because I was using my data for a phone call I felt was important at that time. Instead of me getting off the call to find my way back onto the right route, I stayed on the phone. We do that a lot in life. We’re on a route but we get sidetracked by things that go on and become distracted. Instead of taking a step back and regrouping, we just continue to go in circles as I was doing on this route trying to get to work. So I get to a light and pull out my tablet to pull up that map to get back on the right route and realize I was going the right way twice but I decided it didn’t look like I was going the right direction so I just kept turning. Then, I hear, “All you had to do was stay the course”. God has given a plan. He’s given you a route. He gives alerts on this route. He shows you what’s coming up that may hinder or help you along the way. God is the way and all we have to do is stay the course. The route may not look the way you want it to, things may not be going how you want them to go. The route may take you through avenues that are unfamiliar, but if you’re following God, who is The Way, can He really steer you wrong?

Stay the course. Yes we make vision boards because they are things that we desire from God for our lives. A scripture I studied about desires was Psalm 37 verse 4 and it says, “Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Now, before I learned how to actually study the Bible, I really thought this meant to be happy with the Lord or be happy in him and he will give you the desires of your heart but delight means to please someone greatly. So this scripture meant to me please God and do what he desires you to do and he will give you the desires of your heart and bring our Visions to pass.

Photos from Vision Party 2018

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