Monday, August 25, 2008

Later she gave birth to a daughter and named her Dinah. Genesis 30:21

I subscribe to New Living Translation daily newsletter, ( NLT is a website which takes Bible passages, quotes & Psalms,and breaks them down into everyday language and relates them to real life. I find it to be a wonderful to help understand and discover The Bible better.

Here is a translated passage from Genesis: "As we know, Dinah was the only daughter of Jacob and Leah. Apparently no one really paid much attention to Dinah until she went out for a walk one day in the city of Shechem. During her visit to town, she was raped the son of the ruler of the city. In Jacob's and his sons' eyes, Dinah had been damaged and their family had been insulted. Her father failed to provide any leadership in this situation and his sons took matters into their own hands. The results were treacherous and bloody. In all of this, the victim was overlooked. Dinah was neither comforted nor consulted. Instead, she was treated with almost as much disrespect by her family as she was originally by her assailant. Dinah slipped back into oblivion.:

NLT then offers this thought: "You probably know someone who can identify closely with Dinah. Perhaps you have experienced that same anonymity as a victim who was unnoticed or forgotten. Remember several glimmers of hope: Even when everyone else forgets, God doesn't, when no one seems to notice, God does; when no one seems to care, God does; when you feel all alone, you aren't. And one of the first lessons God will teach you as you depend on him is that there are others who also care and are willing to help. Do you ever wonder how many people are convinced they are worthless?"

Now I can't relate to Dinah because of her unfortunate incident (thankfully), but I can relate to being the (perceived)forgotten victim. You see I always had a self esteem problem – although I did not realize what it was – I just disliked myself and looked upon myself as a second or third rate person. I guess my attitude shone through, because in my mind I felt I was being treated as such. As in all perfect catch-22 situations, the more I thought I was no good, the more I was treated poorly and ergo I felt worse. Perceived or not, I was miserable for a lot of my life because of this. I went on with life, went to school, made friends, fell in love, got married, had a child, held down jobs….but always deep inside of me was this feeling of unworthiness constantly nagging at me. It truly affected all of my life.
and was never mentioned again. Her story reminds us of the tragedies which occur when family members are careless with each other. Someone ends up paying a high price. I had a revelation about six years ago – I AM A GOOD PERSON!!!!

I stopped worrying about what others thought of me –how I looked, dressed, acted and expressed myself. How liberating it was for me. From that time forward I began the healing process. From that time I found the person always living inside me – I dressed the way I wanted, did or did not do the things I wanted & tapped into my creative soul.I have days when that self doubt kicks in, but I now know enough to kick it back out!!!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Five (5) lessons to make you think about the way we treat people.

First Important Lesson - Cleaning Lady.

During my second month of college, our professor
gave us a pop quiz. I was a conscientious student
and had breezed through the questions until I read
the last one:

"What is the first name of the woman who cleans the school?"
Surely this was some kind of joke. I had seen the
cleaning woman several times. She was tall,
dark-haired and in her 50s, but how would I know her name?

I handed in my paper, leaving the last question
blank. Just before class ended, one student asked if
the last question would count toward our quiz grade.

"Absolutely," said the professor. "In your careers,
you will meet many people. All are significant. They
deserve your attention and care, even if all you do
is smile and say "hello."

I've never forgotten that lesson. I also learned her
name was Dorothy

Second Important Lesson - Pickup in the Rain

One night, at 11:30 p.m., an older African American
woman was standing on the side of an Alabama highway
trying to endure a lashing rainstorm. Her car had
broken down and she desperately needed a ride.
Soaking wet, she decided to flag down the next car.
A young white man stopped to help her, generally
unheard of in those conflict-filled 1960s. The man
took her to safety, helped her get assistance and
put her into a taxicab.

She seemed t o be in a big hurry, but wrote down his
address and thanked him. Seven days went by and a
knock came on the man's door. To his surprise, a
giant console color TV was delivered to his home. A
special note was attached..

It read:
"Thank you so much for assisting me on the highway
the other night. The rain drenched not only my
clothes, but also my spirits. Then you came along.
Because of you, I was able to make it to my dying
husband's bedside just before he passed away... God
bless you for helping me and unselfishly serving

Mrs. Nat King Cole.

Third Important Lesson - Always remember those who serve.

In the days when an ice cream sundae cost much less,
a 10-year-old boy entered a hotel coffee shop and
sat at a table. A waitress put a glass of water in
front of him.

"How much is an ice cream sundae?" he asked.

"Fifty cents," replied the waitress.

The little boy pulled is hand out of his pocket and
studied the coins in it.

"Well, how much is a plain dish of ice cream?" he inquired.

By now more people were waiting for a table and the
waitress was growing impatient.

"Thirty-five cents," she brusquely replied.

The little boy again counted his coins.

"I'll have t he plain ice cream," he said.

The waitress brought the ice cream, put the bill on
the table and walked away. The boy finished the ice
cream, paid the cashier and left. When the waitress
came back, she began to cry as she wiped down the
table. There, placed neatly beside the empty dish,
were two nickels and five pennies..

You see, he couldn't have the sundae, because he had
to have enough left to leave her a tip.

Fourth Important Lesson - The Obstacle in Our Path.

In ancient times, a King had a boulder placed on a
roadway. Then he hid himself and watched to see if
anyone would remove the huge rock. Some of the
king's wealthiest merchants and courtiers came by
and simply walked around it. Many loudly blamed the
King for not keeping the roads clear, but none did
anything about getting the stone out of the way.

Then a peasant came along carrying a load of
vegetables. Upon approaching the boulder, the
peasant laid down his burden and tried to move the
stone to the side of the road. After much pushing
and straining, he finally succeeded. After the
peasant picked up his load of vegetables, he noticed
a purse lying in the road where the boulder had
been. The purse contained many gold coins and a note
from the King indicating that the gold was for the
person who removed the boulder from the roadway. The
peasant learned what many of us never understand!