Celibacy…A Modern Day Trend? or Nah?

Waiting Until Marriage is a Really Big Topic of Discussion nowadays…

From Megan Goods and Devon Franklin waiting until marriage to have sex, to Ciara and Russel Wilson’s newly announcing their decision to abstain from sex and to Tim and Briana Bowman going as far as presenting a certificate of virginity to her father, on their wedding a day.

Are we now forced to think and dust off those ideas of waiting until marriage being a very real possibility?

 

Wait a minute….did you actually click on the links and view the video’s???

I’ll wait…. lol.

Really Good Video’s, I know… So back to theses questions after viewing all of the videos…

  • Should Christians start making these announcements a little more frequently?
  • Is this even possible to achieve without rushing into marriage just to have sex?
  • Is abstaining from sex even possible after a divorce?

 

So many questions but at the end of the day, these few people taking the brave steps to announce to the world and then being held accountable by millions of people to their decisions, proves to us that making the decision to wait is very real, very possible, and very hard!!!

Speaking from experience of abstaining now 7 years. It’s literally a non-negotiable commitment you make to yourself and say I will keep because I’m worth it.

Now you may ask, did they abstain from everything? Can one abstain from everything, the answer is still yes! You just have to date and be in a committed relationship with someone that value your decision or is has the same mindset and making the same decision to abstain, having accountability partners and making sure to place barriers and limitations to not fall into sexual temptations. Such as, not being in a bedroom together after hours or at all…. LOL. I’m pretty sure you can think of more after that example. It is very important that there is a very real conversation between both parties to discuss boundaries and limitations. Some people go as far as not kissing because they can’t handle that much but for others holding hands, kissing and such is fine.

If you’re tingling than you shouldn’t be mingling- Marie

SOOOOOOO, Let’s put some scripture to it.

Hebrews 13: 4 Marriage is to be held in honor among all [that is, regarded as something of great value], and the marriage bed undefiled [by immorality or by any sexual sin]; for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous (AMP)

1 Thessalonians 4-7: 3 For this is the will of God, that you be sanctified [separated and set apart from sin]: that you abstain and back away from sexual immorality; 4 that each of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor [being available for God’s purpose and separated from things profane], 5 not [to be used] in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God and are ignorant of His will; 6 and that [in this matter of sexual misconduct] no man shall transgress and defraud his brother because the Lord is the avenger in all these things, just as we have told you before and solemnly warned you. 7 For God has not called us to impurity, but to holiness [to be dedicated, and set apart by behavior that pleases Him, whether in public or in private]. 8 So whoever rejects and disregards this is not [merely] rejecting man but the God who gives His Holy Spirit to you [to dwell in you and empower you to overcome temptation]. (AMP)

1 Corinthians 6:18-20: Run away from sexual immorality [in any form, whether thought or behavior, whether visual or written]. Every other sin that a man commits is outside the body, but the one who is sexually immoral sins against his own body. 19 Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is within you, whom you have [received as a gift] from God, and that you are not your own [property]? 20 You were bought with a price [you were actually purchased with the precious blood of Jesus and made His own]. So then, honor and glorify God with your body. (AMP)

That was good right, but now let’s identify things that we allow to infiltrate our minds as well

ARE WE GETTING FED or ALLOWING DIFFERENT IDEOLOGIES TO TAKE PRECEDENCE?????

Take a listen to this session of Professor Eric Anderson author of  Men are Designed to Cheat. on the new show IT’s Not You It’s Men hosted by Tyrese and Rev Run.

Soooooo, this Valentine’s Day season think about making a commitment to realigning your commitment to God and not to your tingling feelings, your insecurities, your commitment to keeping this man in fear you’ll lose him or the fear of starting over. Simply just giving a man privileges he hasn’t earned, your most prized possession should not be lessened  to someones greed, lust or a good time. Get rid of those soul ties love…and wait! You’re worth the wait.

Someday, somewhere you’ll meet someone who thinks you’re the most gorgeous most prettiest thing that’s walked this planet — yup, wait for that love! But in the meantime keep that crown on Queen! Again, You’re worth the wait.

 

P.S. Tangible Tools, Resources and Accountable Groups to help you along the way.

I AM Rare. <<<<—-— Check them out… Seriously!!!!

 

January 2016: Fellowship Recap- Prayer Call

The Year of Wisdom with Calling All is going to be AMAZING!!!!

The Daughters Team is looking to gain wisdom through relationships with ourselves, our families and with others our purpose and our careers.

The Sons Team is looking to gain wisdom in the areas of finance a 3 part fellowship workshop on Stewardship, Investments and Entrepreneurship.

But we can’t start any of this without trusting God and working on our relationship with God, through Prayer and the Word.

So if you missed the Prayer Call in January… TAKE A LISTEN!!!!!

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In 2016, Calling All Fellowship will begin providing you with valuable, realistic and challenging content because it will be an awesome start to becoming the CHRISTIAN HUB for our generation!!!!!

BOOOOM!!! You like that? OWWW!!!!!!!

It’s about to get LIT…LOL>.>>>> HAHAHAHAHAH!!!

So what does that mean? 

I’m glad you asked 🙂

  1. Meeting new and like-minded people
  2. Monthly Fellowships partnering with different groups, speakers and orgs to give tangible assistance and practical advice.
  3. Shedding light on various groups, orgs, speakers to assist and improve your consistent efforts of being non-negotiable with your faith walk in every area of your lives and in every season of your life.
  4. Sharing and supporting start up businesses and organizations materials, events and tips on our social media outlets.
  5. Sharing new tips and accountability with wisdom and the word in the areas of finance, family, purpose, relationships, and constantly improving our relationship with God through Jesus Christ.

The Truth Is….I am Beautiful.

Wisdom in believing… Wisdom in truth.


beau·ti·ful-of a very high standard; excellent.


So I’ve declared that this year I will be ok, rather, believe that despite my flaws, insecurities and sporadic health issues, I am beautiful. It’s not enough to adorn yourself with wonderful garments because you may find yourself obsessing and defining your value in them. So, I will first adorn myself with the truth, that I am beautiful. There can be NO mistake in that, there can be no compromise, not for any guy to appease his fetish or idea of bias beauty, or trend. I will first adorn myself with the ultimate truth that before I was formed in my mothers womb, while you began to mold me with silkened smooth chocolate skin, irregular textured surfaces and multicolored shades of brown throughout intricate parts of me YOU looked and said, “She’s beautiful, She’s perfect” So, I accept this compliment that I constantly doubt and deny, I accept that this creation is indeed Beautiful. Why would I disagree with you? Maybe I can think of a few reasons, but the fact is You never fail and that alone trumps EVERY excuse.

You should try it.

 

-Marie K. Charles

Balance, Control and The Fear of Success

Balance is something I always had a problem with. Although I prided myself with being fairly organized and having an understanding of systems in place, for me those two things meant having control. Control, for me, was a way to prevent chaos and I needed it to function and to think clearly.

One of my main fears in life is not having a control on things.

Control for me means power, self-discipline, for me to not easily be swayed or become gullible. It means I can function in a way where I not only have a handle on life and my decisions but within the limitations I set for myself.

By having control, I allow myself to be free of or limit significantly the attacks of anxiety, doubt or fear…it ultimately makes it easier to make a calculated decision that will reassure me as long as I have control over the situation, than everything will work out just as planned. I can mentally prepare myself for involuntary or unforeseen mishaps or mistakes, that I know of. Some of you may be reading this and identify with my sentiments, agree with them to some extent, or can already spot some problem areas in my frame of thinking.

However, as good or protective as all of these mechanisms sound, for some reason, I still had a problem with balancing and control. There may be many factors to why it is still a struggle. There can be times where I procrastinate, there can be times I overthink certain situations, lacking trust or am fearful of success.

Sometimes I wonder if I’m limiting myself to grow even beyond my imagination or even truly experience balance due to having too much control?

Am I not trusting of myself enough or God?

Am I really putting forth an effort to balance or am I just OK with being in a struggle because it has now become normal or a part of my identity, am I OK with just complaining about it?

I realize that having control to achieve balance was a way for me not to get hurt, not to fail, not to feel pain, not to have to cry or feel depression, anxiety. But all these prevention, I see that I still experience it no matter how much control I have or limitations i set in place.

I was recently listening to a few sermons, one in particular “the secret to elevation” by Bishop TD Jakes. He said a few things and one oin more particular about being afraid of success. I am good at preventing,I like prevention, it’s smart to prevent and already see a way out of stuff before i get hurt. But deep down in this new territory that I am in, I was, may still am, more comfortable in the valley of struggle and comfort then a new terrain of success just because I don’t knwo what it looks like, I do not know how to prepare for it, it is unfamiliar territory for me. I can cheer someone on and love to be in the background but I can’t possibly see myself beyond what I set for myself.

BUT THANK GOD, that I SERVE A GOD who see’s beyond who I am and my potential, who sets eternity in my heart, who has a hope and a successful future for me, a plan to prosper and not of evil or to hurt me.

I Thank God, I serve a God of perfection even when I am not perfect, I serve a God who is always in control and rightfully so because he is the architect of the world and everyone’s lives. I serve a God who I can trust because He knows the very number of hairs on my head, who is jealous of me, who loves me even before I was in my mothers womb, who considers me smart and beautiful and successful even when I’ve given up or try to talk myself out of great opportunities. Who continues to have a plan for me even when I delay all of the signs for me to move forward. Who still calls me more than a conqueror, even when all I see is defeat and all I feel are wounds.

After all of this talk of balance and control, I’ve come to the conclusion that I have been limiting myself of the opportunities, of success, of financial breakthroughs and of going beyond the potential I know myself to posses. I’ve been limiting God, I’ve been trying to appease others, taking time away from myself, allowing myself to settle, not being still or confident in the word of God. I’ve been teetering trusting God, I’ve been fighting Him and denying the abilities and the talents He’s placed in me, trying to grow and build in me. I am afraid of failure because of how hard I am on myself but most importantly I am afraid of what I can become and if I indeed can handle and be the same person I was in the valley on the mountain top. God is building me and somethings will have to shed, I can’t balance what He is trying to take away. I can’t have control on what He’s trying to remove from me.

Trusting him in a new territory when all you’ve known are walls and no success can be very scary. You question if He is sure that He chose the right person. You even think that it probably won’t last long, you have an expiration date in your mind already, just so you can protect yourself, have control on the level of heart break….

But beloved like in Ecclesiastes 3: 1-13, it states:

“There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven
2 A time to give birth, and a time to die; A time to plant, and a time to uproot what is planted.
3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; A time to tear down, and a time to build up.
4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; A time to mourn, and a time to dance.
5 A time to throw stones, and a time to gather stones; A time to embrace, and a time to shun embracing.
6 A time to search, and a time to give up as lost; A time to keep, and a time to throw away.
7 A time to tear apart, and a time to sew together; A time to be silent, and a time to speak.
8 A time to love, and a time to hate; A time for war, and a time for peace.
9 What profit is there to the worker from that in which he toils? 10 I have seen the task which God has given the sons of men with which to occupy themselves. 11 He has made everything appropriate in its time.  He has also set eternity in their heart, yet so that man will not find out the work which God has done from the beginning even to the end. 12 I know that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and to do good in one’s lifetime; 13 moreover, that every man who eats and drinks sees good in all his labor, it is the gift of God.

There is an appointed time FOR EVERYTHING, but what gets me soo excited is that in the end, it will all works out for our good which = Success. So why be afraid of success right, if that is our ultimate end, SUCCESS!!!  Matthew 24:35 (NIV) Heaven and earth can pass away but his word will not pass away = SUCCESS.  What dies, what closes, what hurts, what breaks, what we sacrifice it will all work out for our good, for those that are in Christ Jesus. This joy you have, which is your strength the world can’t take it away. This is SUCCESS!!!  The word that is in us, the Gates of Hades won’t ever prevail. THIS IS SUCCESS. The enemy can try to steal, kill and destroy, but he will never prevail if we cry out the name Jesus. THIS IS SUCCESS. Romans 8:26-28 (MSG), “Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good”. But I get it, who wants to get hurt, I just want to bypass all of that, don’t be afraid of the pain. Make the choice this day and choose Jesus every time, choose Success. If you think of Jesus as Success then you won’t ever be afraid of it again!!!!

JESUS= SUCCESS!!!!!!

By: Marie, Calling All Founder

Joyful in Hope, Patient in Affliction, Faithful in Prayer

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-photo credit (Brandon Stanton Humans of New York)

2 weeks ago, I came across this HONY post and a thought raced through my mind; “
what happens when what used to work suddenly doesn’t work anymore? What happens when your concrete philosophy of how to achieve success, suddenly seems porous?

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James 1:17 reminds us that “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the father of heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” We get consumed with the thought that success is always determined and manifested by our thoughts and actions. While this is certainly crucial and a part of the equation, 1 does not equal 2 by itself! Let’s look at Job as a case study. He did no wrong, as this was affirmed by God himself! Job 1:8 “The Lord said to Satan, ‘Have you considered My servant Job? For there is no one like him on the earth, a blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil.” His later trials were simply a result of a wager between God and Satan as to the source of Job’s righteousness.

Job 1:11 “10“Have You not made a hedge about him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. 11“But put forth Your hand now and touch all that he has; he will surely curse You to Your face.” 12Then the LORD said to Satan, “Behold, all that he has is in your power, only do not put forth your hand on him.”

Job did no wrong! His affliction wasn’t the result of sin, or his inability to work hard, plan or be strategic! Nothing besides Jobs patience and faithfulness, would remedy his situation.  This brings me back to the crux of the post, all forms of success not deriving from malice, mischievousness, callousness but rather persistence, patience and hard-work are from God!  It may seem like the entire world is obtaining success but you are stuck in Neutral, do not envy your peers and do not be discouraged, rather “Be Joyful in hope, Patient in affliction, and Faithful in Prayer.”  Your turn is coming! And if God has blessed you with success do not forget to count your blessings and give credit to the most high.

– By: Nana Kyermetang

Calling All Sons Rotating Facilitator

Music that speaks to you….

So IT Ends

soitendscover

I’m very picky about the music I listen to, especially Christian Hip Hop. However, S.O. (pronounced S – O) quickly became one of my favorite artists. His music is a mixture of lyrical theology and emotional music for the heart that is very relatable. SO is a native of London with roots that stems from Nigeria (Yes Oh * Nigerian accent*). His new album So It Ends was released on October 16, 2015 and its been on constant rotation ever since. SO tackles issues on suffering and giving God your worries, relationships, family issues, etc. Songs like  “Where Do We Go From Here” and “Give it to God” are tracks I think many people can connect to. as S.O. speaks on his failed engagement and other failed relationships of his. A few songs from the album are posted below. Check them out. S.O. prides himself in presenting the word of God in the best way possible with quality production and artistry.

Desiring God   & SO Collaboration

Only Christ Can Truly Satisfy

A Song For The Discontent

Check out S.O.’s music. You will not be disappointed!

Follow S.O.

Instagram: sothekid

Website: www.soitends.com

Moses Salami

Calling All Sons Program Coordinator

To Retreat You Must first Surrender

To Retreat You Must first Surrender

The military definition of retreat is to withdraw from enemy forces as a result of their superior power or after a defeat. There are many reasons why an army would need to retreat. Here are some valid points below:

• To make time to recover
• To make time to plan
• To evade attack
• To lessen force of an enemy’s blow
• To delay battle to wait for an ALLIE

 

To many, retreat can have a negative connotation of weakness, however retreat can be of vital strategic importance physically, and even more so spiritually. I was bless to have the opportunity to go on the Christ Apostolic Church: 1st in the Americas 2015 Youth Ministry Retreat at Sandy Cove Retreat Center in North East Maryland the this summer. During the retreat I was able to gain so much knowledge in only a matter of three days.

My experience at the retreat this year was amazing. I was truly impressed with way that God working in the lives of the members of this church. This was a retreat for a “youth” ministry, so most the age of the participants range between 14-25 (with most of the youth leaders being in their early to mid thirties). Although young, these brothers and sisters in Christ were on fire for Christ and you could see the fruits spiritually. There were young teenagers speaking tongues, young adults being stirred up by the deep worship, people prophesying on other lives, passionate weeps of release, genuine “real talk” sessions were people could bare their burden with one another, powerful thought-provoking sermons : THE HOLY SPIRIT was moving.

Although most kids the came to the retreat wanting to grow and was expecting for God to show up in a new way in their lives. However there were some kids that came with harden hearts, only present because there Mom/Dad/Siblings/family members had paid for them. Their efforts were lack luster in regards to praise and worship, they were falling asleep during sermons and their overall participation was poor.
I truly believe that the reason why these Guys were INACTIVE was not because they were did not believe that God is real, or they thought they were to cool to pray and worship.  The real reason was the fear of the unknown. God was taking some these youth to new levels that people can only image spiritually and the lack luster retreaters were frighten that God could possibly take them to same place or even higher.
The one of main pastors said something very insightful that really stuck with me. He said “God wont give you the spirit if you are not going to be obedient to it.” So those that were chilling on the side had no opportunity for God to use them because of their lack of obedience, and the lack of obedience is the result of FEAR! Fear of the unknown, fear to change, fear of lack of control, and most of all fear to surrender!
Although it seem that I’m coming down hard on these inactive retreaters, I actually sympathize with some of these youths. Reason being, I think there are many times were I personally and many other Christians fall to our thoughts of fear. Sometimes you can just get frozen by an imagery perception of fear. There was actually a point in the retreat I found my self in this actual place. As I mentioned before the Holy Spirit was definitely present our entire time at this retreat. In just seconds, the vibe of retreat could have change from a chill out session to a deep discussion of the word, somber worshipping or  fervent tongue spoken prayer. Because of this unpredictability, during the retreat I was on edge, thinking “what happens if I lose control and I start speaking in tongues and start seeing visions…how am going to feel. Because of this unknown, I started to have thoughts fear and this influenced my praise and worship and prayer time significantly in a negative way. Because I did not surrender my false perception of control, I wasnt able to seek God fully. But the truth is, I was never in control. As a Christian, I know that God is the master and ruler of all things, thus He is in “control” of all things in heaven and on earth. So me holding back because of the fear of what the holy spirt will do is just foolish. My fear was just slowing up a process that I was so desperately looking for: to feel God presence in my life and to get connected to what’s real. But one thing about the present of God is that I have learned is that, although omnipresent and all powerful, the Holy Spirit is a gentleman; he only goes where he is invited!

The bible lets us know that Jesus left us the Holy Spirit a helper.Romans 8:9 tells us that if a person does not possess the Holy Spirit, he or she does not belong to Christ: “You, however, are controlled not by the sinful nature but by the Spirit, if the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ.” Ephesians 1:13-14 teaches us that the Holy Spirit is the seal of salvation for all those who believe: “Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.”

Timi Ogunfowra

Calling All Sons Lead Facilitator

The Toughest Part of the Gospel

The Toughest Part of the Gospel

by: Quasi-Paul

“SMH” or “shaking my head” is a common phrase used in social media these days. As ill-equipped as it is in capturing my feelings when I heard of what Dylan Roof had allegedly done, all I could do was shake my head. I was and still am deeply saddened that he preyed on his victims in their most vulnerable place. Everybody knows to keep their doors locked in order to protect themselves and their families. However, the Christian church is not supposed to close its doors, we are called to welcome all:

“Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” -Matthew 11:28

Dylan Roof took advantage of this divine open-door policy when he waited inside that South Carolina church for an hour before he began his shooting rampage. Dylan Roof is a conniving coward, a murderer and a despicable human being. He has committed one of the most appallingly racist crimes in almost 50 years.

Upon hearing about this tragedy, I instantly imagined myself at a 1970s Black Panther gathering. What would they say? How would they react? I can imagine that the outcry for vengeance would have been deafening and that “Kill Dylan Roof” would have been the rallying cry. Seething with anger and frustration, my own voice might even have been the loudest. Then I sobered up and I remembered that I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I still wasn’t sure about exactly how that should affect my response, I just knew that lynching Dylan Roof, as fitting a punishment as that might seem, was not the answer.

Thankfully, the power of the Gospel was on full display when one of the family members of Ethel Lance, a victim in the shooting, had an opportunity to address Dylan Roof at his bond hearing. Speaking on behalf of her family and fighting through tears, Ethel Lance’s daughter said “I forgive you” and she pleaded for mercy on Dylan Roof’s soul.

Upon hearing that I remembered one of the reasons that Jesus’ message was so difficult to deal with. We all have moments where we bask in our self-righteousness and condemn others. For me, this was one of those moments. The hardest part of Jesus’ message is that God is willing to be merciful toward people like Dylan Roof as well. I thought to myself, are you kidding me? That Guy? Yes and yes. In our human hearts we have limits as to what we are willing to forgive. If Ethel Lance’s daughter stepped into that courtroom and cursed Dylan Roof out, we all would have cheered and not thought twice about it. “That’s the least he deserves,” we’d say. However, I believe that God was working through that woman to deliver a much better response.

The response of Ethel Lance’s daughter is better because it is actually impossible to heal from the effects of racism in this country without that type of spirit. Jesus said:

“…if anyone slaps you on the right check, turn to him the other also.” -Matthew 5:39

The lesson here is to resist the urge to repay a wrong with a wrong and to respond with a heart that is willing to go the extra mile to seek reconciliation whenever possible. Dylan Roof allegedly committed this mass murder to start a race war, yet we saw the exact opposite. We witnessed a beautiful coalition of people, from all walks of life and from many races, mourning as one. The problem with taking up arms and trying to retaliate is that it continues a cycle of violence and bitterness that will continue on forever. Blacks feel especially justified, and rightly so, in their condemnation of the racist history of America and its modern-day manifestations. In so doing we are heavy-handed and at times downright hateful in our approach. As a result, hate groups were able to manipulate a disaffected and mentally weak person into committing a heinous act. We have witnessed the plot of the movie Higher Learning in real life.

So even though it’s a tough pill to swallow, Jesus’ Gospel message of mercy and forgiveness means that despite the fact that Blacks are in many ways victims of America’s racism, we must be willing to reconcile. I’ll be the first to admit that this is one area in which God is still working on my heart.

 

Thank you to our guest blogger: Adeniyi “Quasi – Paul” Taiwo. Be sure to check out the links below to his blog and website.

Blog post: http://acts1723.com/2015/06/25/the-toughest-part-of-the-gospel/

Website: http://acts1723.com/

 

Grace &  Peace,

Calling All