Ah, birds chirping every morning outside my bedroom window remind me that change is on the horizon. As they unapologetically serenade me with their sweet melodic symphonies, I smile with excitement and release a deep sigh. “Spring, finally. Welcome!”

I enjoyed the beauty of winter’s coat on long toasty nights, snuggling beneath my favorite blanket with a warm cup of tea gently nestled between my fingers. But Spring has sprung and serves as the beautiful, warm introduction to my beloved Summer season. 

Spring is a joyous reflection of the beauty of newness: new opportunities, new experiences, and just newness of life in general. Yes, Spring reverberates a pure exhilaration of discovering the unknown, as it showcases its bright sunrays that simply feel good on the skin. 

What newness of life have you been waiting to uncover and spring forth? What are you looking forward to seeing develop, grow, and unearth during this new season? 

  • Will you write that new book?
  • Launch your website?
  • Develop a new resume for your job search?
  • Commit to self-care or starting a wellness plan?
  • Finalize your business strategy?

Whatever your rightful newness might be, lean into it! Embrace this season of change and move forward. Change doesn’t have to be scary and in fact, the tulips budding from their cold, damp wintery flower bed put us on notice of this fact. And longer days with more sunshine can be great inspiration in and of itself to both breathe and dig deeper.

So, stand tall and grasp this season of newness with both hands. Purpose in your heart to deliberately plan to emerge as a stronger version of yourself. Let Spring inspire you to be ever-growing, ever-achieving, ever-emerging, ever-becoming. Life has layers and chapters, and let’s write this next one in bold, amazing colors. 

Welcome, Spring! Roll out your green carpet and illustrious shades of vibrant hues in all of your splendor. Spring forth – we’ve been awaiting your arrival.

© 2021 Kassandra McGhee

Tell the truth! Some conversations are easier had than others. Some are avoided because they are uncomfortable. Some aren’t leaned into because we are waiting for the ‘right’ time. Yet the truth – whether it’s avoided or embraced – remains unchanged. And the truth itself is not provocative, it’s simply the truth. 

Provocative: a word I’ve heard increasingly utilized lately when it comes to some poignant truth-filled conversations. Perhaps it’s because the audience that’s hearing these truths feels the information is challenging, offensive, insulting, or stimulating. Perhaps it’s because there was no prior awareness of the information’s existence. Perhaps it’s because some have been incubated from its direct impact. Or perhaps it’s because ‘we’ (collectively) have yet to intentionally pursue it or develop a palate (appreciation) for it. 

I’ve heard it said that “ignorance is bliss” and perhaps there’s a layer of accuracy to this statement, as it can leave one in a place of avoiding the cognitive dissonance of knowing there’s a problem, staring the need to change directly in the face, but consciously choosing not to. Unawareness can create a comfortable barrier that allows us to emotionally, intellectually, and dare I say spiritually avoid the pain of choosing. For when wakefulness of the truth comes, so does the quandary of choice; so does the conversation that is never (honestly) had. 

This conversation reverberates truths that are deeply embedded in far-reaching, honest historic encounters which are still prevalent today. The conversation that is never (honestly) had – if we’re completely transparent – has at least at some point been considered. A consciousness of truth has always existed but now it has spread broader then it ever has, into corridors and exchanges never traveled, and onto platforms where its existence is no longer deniable. The truth (its champions) stands and demands the conversation that is never (honestly) had to finally take place, front and center. 

“Do we sincerely want ‘real’ change? Why or why not? What is required and are we willing to make the investment? What would ‘real’ change look like for everyone involved during the planning, implementation, and post-implementation phases? How will ‘real’ change be beneficially? Who should be involved in determining what ‘real” change is needed? What has prevented ‘real’ change from happening to date? What happens if we continue to choose to not invest in ‘real’ change? Do I trust there are enough resources for everyone to prosper? What will I personally do to help ensure ‘real’ change becomes a reality?” This is the conversation. Provocative? No, truthful!

When ‘we’ choose to wholly acknowledge the truth, only then will it change from being seen as provocative to being accepted as ‘our’ shared reality and ‘our’ mutual normal. Far too often it seems that it’s not until we see/experience a shared tragedy or heartfelt event that the tenderness of humanity’s soul, that kindness, love or concern for people regardless of race, creed or anything else that tries to divide us is put on public display. It is not until the publicized random acts of kindness or heroism where people are seen intentionally and unselfishly helping others that ‘we’ are broadly reminded that each person holds the same dreams, the same desires, and we all want the same promises of peace, safety, fulfillment of purpose, and better for ourselves, our families, and our loved ones.

Yes, it is in these moments that ‘we’ are reminded that our worlds are not that far apart and how our individual actions and every personal choice that ‘we’ make (or choose not to) impacts each other. So when ‘we’ choose to not make choices for all of our betterment, what does that say about us individually? What does that say about us collectively? 

Hosea 4:6a says, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.” As a Believer, for me this is a truth. It is a truth I unfortunately see in the lives of far too many individuals I encounter. The absence of the awareness of valuable information (spiritually or naturally) creates a devastation like no other. It fosters a void, a vacuum that can only be filled by the attainment of proper data. And as a truth champion, I believe ‘we’ must ensure equitable, timely access to resources including accurate knowledge, as it is foundational to accessing opportunities for growth and success. Knowledge equates to access. Access creates opportunities. Opportunities are doors and pathways to growth and success.

Once we are aware of better, we have the opportunity to choose better. And everyone has a right to make the choice to develop into the best versions of themselves. Everyone has the right to perfect and utilize their talents to the fullest. Everyone has the right to live a life unencumbered by undue obstacles. Everyone has a right to prosperity. Christ died for all (2 Corinthians 5:15), God has a perfect plan for each of us (Jeremiah 29:11), we are to serve others (I Peter 4:10), and must defend others in need (Proverbs 31:8-9). Justness is essential, it is our duty, it is knitted into our shared bond. 

What if we chose to consciously live with the reality that our lives are not our own but were meant to help create a truly beautiful place for all of the inhabitants of the earth? What if we chose to focus on the ‘real’ enemy of the Believer (the devil) and purposefully created pathways to improve ourselves and help uplift each other? What if we laid aside ignorance and chose wisdom; laid aside fear and chose faith; laid aside hatred and chose love; laid aside skepticism and chose trust; laid aside excuses and chose solutions; laid aside dishonesties and chose truth? 

What if we opened our hearts and chose ‘real’ change? What if we loved each other as God loves us? What if we, as God’s dear children, imitated our Father? What if we matured and really acted as His Church? It’s time to no longer say ‘what if’ and be salt and light, and representatives of He who is love itself. It is beyond time for us to chose to have the conversation that is never (honestly) had.

Open your mouth for the mute, for the rights of all who are unfortunate and defenseless; open your mouth, judge righteously, and administer justice for the afflicted and needy. (Proverbs 31:8-9, AMP)

© 2021 Kassandra McGhee

“If you’re alive, you should be growing.”  

Who fooled us into thinking that once we reached adulthood, we were finished growing? Yes, adulthood – what an exciting time, what an amazing goal to achieve. Turning 18 and 21, you know the sign of legality and the official stamp of becoming an adult. Yes, that is thrilling indeed and completely worthy of celebration. And so is the scenic continuation of the adulthood journey, where many of us are successfully traveling. It’s called the “beyond the 20-something realm” and includes stages we might have once innocently thought of as “old.” But now we’re wise enough to realize that this part of the journey is also fun, enlightening, and amazing. And we love it here (well mostly).

However, no matter what age or stage, don’t rest on your laurels and believe this is the culmination of our growing. In fact, it’s just the beginning of another chapter of our transformation into who we will ultimately become. I hate if I abruptly burst anyone’s bubble, but I’m just speaking what many of us already know. If you’re alive, you should be growing. The truth is, we should never remain the same version of ourselves. And if we do, we’ve done ourselves and the world we are here to impact a grave injustice. 

Yes, an injustice as our personal growth signifies improvement, expansion, better, and more. It is the antithesis of stagnation, which dishonors our purposefulness and fuels the demise of our life’s legacy. When we choose to grow, we choose to give ourselves and others an enhanced life. We choose to experience life fuller and push ourselves to not settle for less than God’s abundant living that’s available for us. We choose to embrace healthy change, knowing it leads to a richer, more fulfilled life where we make our dreams our reality. Yes, we choose growth and everything thing that goes along with it. 

It’s just like keeping a knife sharp – enduring change and sometimes the painful “sharpening” process, because it yields a newfound greatness. And anyone who cooks knows the importance of maintaining this essential kitchen instrument, and most likely the pain of trying to cut something with a knife that was too dull to properly perform the task. So let’s all admit it – each of us has had at least one instance when we faced a new technology, concept, task, or even the current pandemic that required us to sharpen our knives (skill set, vision, strategies, and the list goes on). But don’t run away from the thought, embrace it. 

Change and growth really can be motivating and is always enriching. It’s the excitement of opening a brand-new door, discovering new things you like, developing greater strength, building new connections, or obtaining an invigorated focus and vision. Yes, continually growing is well worth every investment. So, take out that knife sharpening stone, and learn a new skill, take the class, read the book, build the website, grow. Because you, my friend, definitely owe it to yourself. 

© 2021 Kassandra McGhee

Early this morning as I was folding clothes, I started to get a little tired. I had hung the entire load to avoid dryer damage and shrinkage, and as I took them off of their drying hangers, my Mother helped me fold them, placing them into ‘like’ piles. I was already fatigued from days, weeks, months of interrupted sleep patterns, due to the demands of work, ministry, and home. So an early morning laundry session felt a bit arduous. I looked at the clothing and thought of all of the items I had bought to have a diversity of outfits, including the much-needed winter attire, as I had arrived in July to help my parents and thought I would only be here until about October, definitely going home before winter’s arrival. But it was now February of the following year, which meant boots, long sleeve shirts and sweaters, and pants, socks, and all of the things that go along with winter-comfort had been purchased. I looked at the pile of clothes and decreed it would be counted as a seed for God’s kingdom, as I had previously done with other things I’d bought to fulfill what I knew He had instructed me to do regarding my parents, family, and others. 

As I sighed from getting even more tired as I folded clothes early in the morning, Holy Spirit quickly removed the thought of getting tired from the amount of clothes that I was folding and replaced it with gratefulness for the amount of clothes I was folding. I immediately asked God to forgive me for even the “sigh of complaint” and thought of “this is a lot.” Because I then remembered a time that I couldn’t afford everything that I needed, and now I had been blessed with everything I desired. I said, “Thank You, Lord” and continued to fold. As I walked into my childhood bedroom to put the clothes in the clear plastic totes I had bought to store them while I was here, I saw a reusable fabric mask that was part of my pile of laundry. The mask has a filter pocket and can be used over and over again, and I washed it to ensure it was clean and prepped to receive a new filter insert. 

It was at this moment that God reminded me of a “precious seed” He had me sow during the early days of the pandemic. I was at the post office, finally picking up the long-awaited and essential medical-grade PPE (masks and filters) that had gotten delayed in shipment. Due to high demand, scarcity, and stories of these items being stolen, I went to a private corner of the post office to open the box to ensure I wouldn’t be “at risk” if I opened them publicly. I counted them and they were all there. I sighed in a sense of relief and thanked God for providing them for my family and me. With them tucked away in my purse, I stood in line, standing at least 6-feet away from other patrons to pick up whatever box was associated with the slip that I retrieved from my PO box.

As I waited, I heard a conversation that concerned me. “I like your mask. Where did you get it, or do you make them?” The voice came from an older gentleman standing behind me, who was talking with a lady standing to my left. He was wearing a bandana around his face and stated he was having difficulty finding masks. The young lady indicated she made them and told him the price was $75. I was flabbergasted as while her mask was made of designer material, it didn’t properly cover her nose or the sides of her face. The look on his face told me that I didn’t need to arbitrate, as my soul desired to, because the price he was quoted was unfavorable to him. That’s when Holy Spirit spoke and prompted me to give him a mask filter. As he walked out of the front door of the building, I approached him.

“Excuse me, Sir. I was in front of you in the post office and overheard your conversation about not being able to find a mask. From what I’ve researched and have been told by several medical professionals, you can use a filter with your bandana. I will give you one of the new filters I got today and information about where you can order masks and filters online.” The look of pleasant shock flooded his face, as he said, “Really?!” I went into my purse and gave him a filter, telling him how to use it and where to order additional PPE. With his multiple, “Thank you, I really appreciate it” statements, I politely and humbly responded, “Praise God, my pleasure. God bless you and please stay safe.” My heart was happy and although I had waited six weeks for the PPE that should have taken less than one, God had protected yet another one of His creations or children through what He provided and entrusted into my hands. To God alone be all of the glory, honor, and praise!

And this morning, as I folded and put away my clothes, God reminded me of this “precious seed.” It was precious as it was sacrificial and sown from limited resources that in the natural, I required for my own life and that of my family. It might have seemed small but pricey nonetheless, as PPE was a rare, essential find at that moment. Yet God saw that filter as a seed – something not to fulfill my need but to be sown to fulfill someone else’s. Who but God knows what faith He planted or watered from the “precious seed” that was sown that day? Who but God knows how many lives the gentleman will positively impact for God’s kingdom? Who but God knows how God’s fame will spread as the man shares the story about how God provided for him in the time of famine? 

This morning, God reminded of that “precious seed” and how He would honor it and bring an immense harvest to me for it. He reminded me to expect an abundant harvest from every seed and sacrifice I’ve made for Him and His kingdom. He reminded me to not ever grow weary of doing well, for I would reap a plentiful harvest when the time was right, if I didn’t faint. He reminded me that He watches over His words to perform them and He is faithful to His promises. He reminded me that He will satisfy my mouth with only good things. He reminded me that I had seen His faithfulness throughout my life and that because He was my Shepherd, I lacked nothing. He reminded me that obedience is better than sacrifice and sowing that “precious seed” during a definite time of personal need would indeed be greatly honored.

This morning, God reminded me, so let me remind you. For I am encouraged yet again today, because “great is Thy faithfulness, oh God unto me.” 

Scriptural Reflections

  • And let us not lose heart and grow weary and faint in acting nobly and doing right, for in due time and at the appointed season we shall reap, if we do not loosen and relax our courage and faint. (Galatians 6:9 AMPC)
  •  So let us seize and hold fast and retain without wavering the hope we cherish and confess and our acknowledgement of it, for He Who promised is reliable (sure) and faithful to His word. (Hebrews 10:23 AMPC)
  • “While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, winter and summer, and day and night shall not cease.” (Genesis 8:22 AMP)
  • For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; I was naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me [with help and ministering care]; I was in prison, and you came to Me [ignoring personal danger].’ Then the righteous will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? And when did we see You as a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? And when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ The King will answer and say to them, ‘I assure you and most solemnly say to you, to the extent that you did it for one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it for Me.’ (Matthew 25:35-40 AMP)

© 2021 Kassandra McGhee

I have been crucified with Christ [that is, in Him I have shared His crucifixion]; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body I live by faith [by adhering to, relying on, and completely trusting] in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me. (Galatians 2:20, AMP)

The story of Christ’s resurrection brings hope to our lives and Christian faith. It is central to our faith in God and salvation through Christ. According to Romans 6:1-11, God raised Christ from the dead and thus, Jesus obtained power over the enemy including over sin. And through our acceptance of Jesus as our Savior (Romans 10:9-10), we share in His victory. Yes, as Believers we share in His resurrected life – a life of triumph, freedom, authority, newness. For we too are now victorious over the enemy. We too now have a new life and liberation, as our old nature was crucified, buried, and our new resurrected life in Christ has been birthed. We too are resurrected!

According to 2 Corinthians 5:17, anyone who has accepted Christ as Savior is now a new creature (reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit) and has a new life. It is exciting to know that as Christians we are resurrected – rebirthed, regenerated, renewed. Because of our hope in Christ, old things are gone, and a new victorious life has begun. And our victory through Christ is sure (1 Corinthians 15:57; 2Corinthians 2:14). Church, there is power in our resurrection in Christ. A power that allows us to boldly walk in victory over the enemy at all times. And as God empowered Christ to successfully fulfill His purpose in the earth, He also empowers us (1 John 4:4; Philippians 4:13; Luke 10:19). We have the same ability to carry out the work that Jesus did on the earth and in fact, we are expected to (John 14:12-14; Matthew 28:18-20).

So, what in your life needs to be resurrected to fulfill God’s purpose in you? What needs to be rebirthed, regenerated, renewed? Has the personal time you spend studying God’s word, praying, and worshipping Him lessened? Has your passion to evangelize waned? Have your dreams been set aside due to past rejection, discouragement or closed doors? Has your spiritual vision become dim and in need of sharpening? Where have things begun to die that need to live and thrive? Well, there’s no time like the present, as we pause to remember Christ’s triumphant resurrection from the grave, to resurrect our commitment to the Church’s call to advance God’s kingdom. There’s no time like now to rededicate your life to God and to building a stronger relationship with Him. There’s no better time to cry out in a loud voice to dead situations in your life that God has commanded to live, just as Jesus did to speak life into Lazarus’ dead body (John 11:43-45). For the power of life and death is in your tongue (Proverbs 18:21) and you have the power to decree a thing and it be established (Job 22:28). 

So, on this glorious Resurrection Sunday, rise up, lift your heart and voice and shout unto God in a voice of victory! Recommit your ways to Him and choose to live a surrendered life that’s worthy of His great sacrifice of love. We must fulfill His great commission, we must answer the call, we must speak life to what God has ordained to live, we must live in the light and as the light. We must live boldly, live righteously, live purposefully, live victoriously, live resurrected. Be courageous [be confident, be undaunted, be filled with joy]; I have overcome the world.” [My conquest is accomplished, My victory abiding.]” (John 16:33b, AMP).

Saints, let us live and walk as He did. Let us walk in victory and authority, walk in the newness of life, walk in the power of resurrection.

 

© 2020 Kassandra McGhee

Admit it, change can be hard! But it doesn’t have to be dreaded and in fact, just might bring something positive.

I know, I know – change might not be something you desire to discuss right now, especially with some of the unwelcomed ones we’ve recently encountered. But the truth is, change is inevitable and how we adjust to it is key. And isn’t it great to know that we get to choose our response? That’s one of the most encouraging things about change – we can decide to either embrace the positive or focus on the negative (however, I would definitely not recommend or endorse the latter).

So, let’s decide! Below are a few quick tips about accepting change and finding the new silver lining:

BE HONEST

  • Be truthful about your feelings related to the change
  • Reflect and write a list of the things you enjoyed about your life prior to the change and how the change has/will impact them
  • Make a list of the consequences of the change (positive and negative) and your thoughts about each of them
  • Share your lists/thoughts with a trusted person who will listen and provide supportive, honest feedback

FOCUS ON THE POSITIVE

  • Know that it’s important to move beyond feelings and thoughts into positive action
  • Develop a plan about how you will address and manage the negative consequences
  • Write a statement about the benefit(s) of each positive consequence
  • Make a list of words or statements to describe the positive outcomes (i.e., relaxation, money, healthy, faith, family, quality time, personal growth, increased savings, achieve my dreams, etc.)
  • Create a vision board or signs that include your positive statements 
  • Review your vision board/signs daily  

SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS

  • Allow yourself a realistic adjustment timeframe and learning curve
  • Utilize only affirmative self-talk and imaging related to the change and its positive outcomes
  • Plan to succeed by developing concrete ways you will integrate the change into your daily life
  • Regularly evaluate areas where you’ve positively embraced change as well as opportunities for growth
  • Applaud and reward yourself as you achieve small and larger acceptance milestones
  • Adjust and improve your plans, as the need arises

KEEP IT GOING

  • Find what will encourage and support you as you move through the stages of accepting the change (i.e., accountability partner, journaling, positive affirmations, prayer, exercise, relaxation time, etc.)
  • Keep a log of positive things that happen along the way
  • Commit to the “new normal” by moving forward and only looking back for the lessons and inspiration
  • Smile, you’re a champion and the best is yet to come

 

© 2020 Kassandra McGhee

As echoed by recent global events, things in our lives can change quickly. One moment life is occurring as usual, in accordance with whatever our “normal” might be. Running errands for our family, having dinner at a favorite restaurant, dropping off children at school, kissing our spouse before leaving for work, or planning our next fun leisure trip. You see, we all have familiar routines that provide invisible parameters in which we comfortably navigate. But what happens when our peace is agitated as the sanctity of our homes and human capacity feel threatened? What happens when the world around us is panicking due to far-reaching economic and health concerns? What happens when we stand in the face of a largescale alarm and must choose between fear and faith? For what once was an embraced ordinary reality has now become a cause for amplified prayer and reflection. What once was a fight we’ve known has now become a curveball.

But the truth is, this IS not and WILL not be the only shift in normalcy within our lives. Think about it, this is not the first time we’ve had to move past our emotions and choose faith. This is not the first time we’ve been faced with what seems like an insurmountable situation where leaning further into reliance on God was required. Or perhaps it is, and how exciting this opportunity is for you! It’s a chance to grow and see God at a deeper, more intimate level. Now, this is not to make light of the evil the devil has wrought, but to encourage each Believer to remember WHO we are and WHOSE we are. For as Christians, our posture is to be different from those who have no hope in Christ. As His children, we have promises and assurances that allow us to act in faith and remain anchored even during the strongest storms (Numbers 23:19; Matthew 28:20; Psalm 91:11; Luke 12:31-32; Psalm 23). I’m reminded of Hebrews 11 that chronicles the triumphs achieved by many Believers because of their faith. I am encouraged and strengthened by their witness and assured that the same God that was faithful to them (and honored their faith) will be faithful to us (Hebrews 10:23; Deuteronomy 7:9; Hebrews 13:8). God has promised to provide for us, and we shall lack nothing (Philippians 4:19; Psalm 37:18-19). So Church, where is your faith? Will we be named as faith-warriors and champions amongst those in our generation?

Yes, now like never before it is time for Believers to boldly stand without the presence of fear or panic. According to Matthew 5:14-16, we must shine to exalt God as His beacons of light and hope. We must plan, shift, and remain focused on what really matters – our kingdom purpose. Now more than ever is not the time for retreat but to dig in our heels in perseverance and strength. If we’re facing it, it’s because with the empowerment of God we are already victorious over it. Don’t be confused or negate who we are based upon our position in Him. We are more than conquerors (Romans 8:31-39) and have power over all of the enemy’s devices (Luke 10:19). We are His body, His Church, and we prevail (I Corinthians 12:27; Matthew 16:18-19). So even if by current law the doors of our assemblies cannot open, now more than ever is our time to BE the Church and shine brightly for the kingdom. The work of the Church is not confined within the walls we gather to jointly worship God and be taught/edified through His word to live out our faith. As the Church, we are commissioned to “go” and make disciples (Matthew 28:19-20) and boldly live out our faith so the whole world would see the reality a prosperous, victorious, peaceful, and surrendered life in Christ.

This temporal situation will not withstand and the prayers of the righteous can always accomplish much (James 5:16). And constant prayer keeps us focused on our source of strength (Luke 18:1) and is part of our spiritual arsenal. II Corinthians 10:3-6 reminds us that this battle is spiritual in nature and so is our weaponry. Verse 4 states:

“The weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood.] Our weapons are divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses {II Corinthians 10: 4, AMP}.”

 We must remain focused not on the challenge yet on God, for that is what will keep us at peace (Isaiah 26:3). And the fact is, we are powerful and mighty in God (Philippians 4:13) and nothing can harm us (Isaiah 54:17; Psalm 91). We don’t fear, we walk in faith. We don’t run from problems, we bring solutions. We don’t hide, we shine. We are all spiritual first-responders and we have a great work to do!

I was reminded of these truths while walking through the aisles of a store, shopping for groceries. The space was filled with what suggested panic, as people nearly ran through the store to obtain food and household items. In that moment, God reminded me that the Church has to always be different and lead by example. As I calmly shopped to obtain the items I needed and desired, I had the opportunity to witness to others who were upset by the empty shelves and fearful energy from other shoppers. I talked about my faith in God and how we should wisely take steps to safeguard our health but pray to God and trust Him in all things. It was one of those beautiful reminders to always “leave your light on” and how our lives are the greatest sermons others will hear.

Church, I challenge/implore you to remain laser-focused on God and getting His work done during this time, when the enemy is sending major distractions. Our breakthrough is on the horizon. We cannot wait until tomorrow to walk in our position of authority over the enemy. We cannot wait until tomorrow to read and meditate God’s word, pray and decree His word over ourselves, families, and this world. We cannot wait to offer Christ to those who haven’t accepted Him as their Lord and Savior (Romans 10:9-10). We are the Church and our hearts must always remain open to hear and to do what our God says. Our marching orders are still the same: “go” and make disciples, walk in love, live by faith. For as the world faces this and other areas of darkness, we must continue to be His bright shining light. So Church, BE the Church and shine – for tomorrow can’t wait.

 

© 2020 Kassandra McGhee 

 

“You are who God says you are. Now believe it. Period!”

When was the last time you stood tall, looked in the mirror, and boldly decreed your own victory? Well if the answer is “never” or “not today” then let’s correct that! Knowing who we are is essential to our success in life which is about fulfilling our God-ordained purpose.

As Believers, we are more than conquers (Romans 8:37) and winning is in our DNA (I John 5:4). Yes, that royal Godly “blood” (His Spirt) that courses through your spirt-man is filled with power. And when we yield to His leading and operate in faith in His word, we are unstoppable (Luke 10:19). How can we go wrong by relying on God as our strength and source? How can we be defeated when we renew our minds (Romans 12:2), armor up (Ephesians 6:11), feast on God’s word (St. Matthew 4:4), and remember that we walk in victory even before the battle begins (I Corinthians 15:57)?

So, Champion, remember the fight is fixed and you are already the winner. Walk like it, talk like it, act like it, live like it. No longer settle for less but expect all of the goodness God has in store for you. Now, square your shoulders, lift your head high, and join me in making this part of your daily decree:

 

I am a person of destiny

I know who I am

Because I know whose I am

 

God my Father and Creator

He alone defines me

He alone defines my value

He alone defines my worth

And I see myself

Only the way God sees me

 

I am God’s child

I am loved

I am forgiven

I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus

I am a joint heir with Christ

And that makes me royalty

 

I am accepted

I am undefeatable

I am always victorious because of Christ

 

I am a unique, hand-made Masterpiece

I am beautiful

I am fearfully and wonderfully made by God

And that my soul knows right well

 

I boldly walk in my purpose

I boldly take full authority over the enemy

I boldly live in liberty

Because I am a Champion

 

© 2019 Kassandra McGhee

 

Projects, projects, projects. We all have them although we don’t always love them. Whether at home, work or elsewhere, they require the same thing – the proper resources. Sound simple, right? Well, yes but determining, gathering, and properly deploying those resources is where it can get interesting. 

No, this will not be an academic discourse regarding the tenets of effective project management or the ideal project management tools. This post will simply focus on outlining a few good reminders as we tackle and head straight into the projects we face. 

 

I. Focus on the Big Picture (The “What”)

When you know, can clearly see, and focus on your target, it is easier to hit it. There is nothing earth shattering in this simple truth. But it’s a good reminder of the importance of drafting the big picture for your project regarding “what success looks like.” This step is essential and foundational to everything you will do within the scope of the project. Identifying the wins and ultimately the image of overall project success will not only help focus your time and efforts but serve as the guidepost for all project activities.

II. Develop Key Implementation Strategies (Knowing the “How”)

Now that we know the “what” (what project completion or success looks like), we must identify the “how.” And this is where strategic planning takes centerstage. Brainstorming how-tos and then developing a framework for implementation are key. How will we achieve our project goals? What specific tasks need to occur to ensure the project goals are completed within the designated guidelines and budget? What resources are needed to complete the tasks? Taking the time to properly assess, plan, and align your resources will serve you well not only during the initial project planning stages but long-term. For example, if serving 2000 additional customers through our online store within the next 12 months is the goal (the what), developing a framework that identifies the specific approaches/tasks to achieve the goal, a timeframe for implementation of each task, and the resources needed to achieve them is the next step. Your “how” should:

  • Be explorative

Have you ever heard of the saying, “There’s more than one way to skin a cat?” Well, I’m not sure why anyone would want to actually do this, however, I understand the concept. There are typically many paths to achieving the same result. And uncovering the best one(s) for your project will occur once you fully explore your options.

  • Be detailed

A well-outlined plan is crucial not just for you but for those who you’ll enlist to help “birth” your vision. If your plan lacks substance or isn’t clearly communicated, too often stakeholder buy-in, commitment, and successful project implementation are negatively impacted. Be as detailed as possible about “how” you will achieve your goals. 

  • Be realistic

Rome wasn’t built in a day and most likely neither will your project. When setting goals and deadlines, properly assess the resources that are required to achieve them including any personnel or work hours. Consider utilizing backwards planning to help determine what resources are realistically needed to achieve the project results you desire. 

  • Be flexible

Do your research! Know what are “hard-set” deliverables and where there’s some potential latitude. Does the project “require” a specific item or is it a “nice to have?” Where can you adjust and save the resources of time or money without jeopardizing the quality and integrity of the project? Being flexible, when it makes good project sense, can truly help benefit your project in the long run.

III. Deploy & Engage

Project launch can be exciting! So, once you’ve properly planned, move forward with no fear, no hesitation, no reservation. It’s time to deploy the strategies, manpower, collaborative resources, and tools you’ve identified & acquired to effectively get the job done. And whatever wasn’t available, continue to actively engage with stakeholders to secure the other tools.

IV. Ongoing Analysis 

Continuous review or reassessment of the project plan and essential resources needed to achieve the “what” and “how” is invaluable. For example, serving 2000 additional customers through your online store might not be possible if your technology platform or manpower are insufficient or change throughout your project timeframe. Thus, ongoing evaluation will help drive your “how” and the implementation of your strategies.

Alright project champions, let’s look those projects squarely in the eye and say, “Yeah, we’ve got this. Let’s go and make this happen!” Here’s to your ongoing project success. 

 

© 2019 Kassandra McGhee

 

I was sitting quietly on a cold morning train, heading to work. It was peaceful and I was well-rested, gazing out of the window as we approached the next station stop. Lots of passengers filled the aisles upon boarding, perusing vacant seats to acquire. I notice a man with finely groomed silver hair and a black trench coat with ear muffs. Alongside him, she was cloaked in a caramel parka with a tightly-drawn hood trimmed in fur. As they took their places in the empty seat in front of me, he slid off his ear muffs and watched her remove her hood. And then I saw it – the glimmer in his eye as she softly brushed her fingers through her shoulder length silver curls that were nestled beneath her winter’s covering. He adored her. As she turned to face him, his eyes were already fixed upon her. And then I saw it – a soft smile as her eyes met his. She adored him.

And their hands touched, with gentle touches dancing amongst their lighthearted verbal exchange and laughter. It was simply magically, as their eyes intently met each others. And then I saw it – adoration, respect, cherishing, love.

I saw it –a lifetime of embracing each other through the years. 
I saw it – boy meets girl now man loves woman.
I saw it – girl meets boy now woman loves man.
I saw it – hopes and dreams and a beautiful legacy of love.
I saw it – smile lines, gray hair, and butterflies.
I saw it – tears and disappointments, hugs and forgiveness.
I saw it – hands intertwined and long quiet nights.
I saw it – celebrations of nothing special and smiles just because.
I saw it – moments of loving you but not liking you but never leaving you.

I saw it –a commitment to us getting better and always endeavoring to grow into oneness.
I saw it – best friends and lovers.
I saw it – you are worth my investment and I will protect your heart.
I saw it – you are my priority and what matters to you matters to me. 
I saw it – a quiet passion that seemed to make time stand still to pay homage to love.
I saw it – a heart’s declaration that the years have not diminished my love for you.
I saw it – you are endeared to me even the more.
I saw it – I saw true love. 

 

© 2018 Kassandra McGhee