Protection through the Fiery Furnace!

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I have been really pensive lately. Especially when trying to trust God despite adverse circumstances. Well God being God has a way of bringing things back to our remembrance to help us remember where God brought us from and to reflect on God’s grace and mercy.

When I was in pre-school or Kindergarten, I distinctly recall being afraid and fearful usually of some fictitious “boogie monster”. Well being  two years older than he – I often passed my fears onto my brother.

One night in particular, my brother and I were pretty riled up into our fears so much until I conjured up a recipe to keep us from this dreadful “boogie man”!

I told my brother that he should sleep in my room as the first step to keep the “boogie man”away. I, then, suggested that we keep the lamp on because light was the next line of defense.  Following,  I decided that we would have more light if we removed the shade and finally for ultimate protection,  it was necessary for us to put the shade-less lamp in the bed with us.

Well, that light bulb lying on our pillow in bed next to us caught fire while we were sleeping. The way this particular home was designed our bedrooms were on the complete opposite side of the house – we were separated from our parents’ master bedroom by a hallway, family room, and kitchen.

I recall being awake the next morning seated at my mother’s feet as she gently cut the singed pieces of hair from my head. My father was in the background saying that he came to check on my brother and I in the middle of the night out of routine.  Once he opened my bedroom door he saw my brother nestled in the corner of the bed lying against the wall, while I was lying on the pillow which was in flames.

It wasn’t until God brought this incident to remembrance the other day that I realized the significance of neither of us feeling the heat from the fire.

The miracle of walking away from the fire unscathed would have been more than enough, but our God being a God of overflow made it so that we slept peacefully through that terrible incident with no awareness of any danger.

As a matter of fact, God provided the biblical reference of Daniel 3 with the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego being not only thrown into the fiery furnance, living through it without one hair being singed, but an entire kingdom was converted & the three men were also rewarded by the king!

God’s providing this story as a reference makes me think about my own life as a living testimony and how this example is one of many about how my God has rescued me! I am more than happy to shout it from the rooftop about God’s goodness & mercy as I know full – well about it! Hallelujah,  my God is worthy to be praised!

If you don’t know Jesus,  do set up an appointment to meet Him today! I promise you will not be disappointed – as He provides a way for us all to get to The Father (God) and without Jesus and calvary we would all probably still have to offer living sacrifices at the altar.

Thank God for grace.

Blessings to You My Friends!

Keeping up with VALENCYA updates ; ) 

1) Purchase my Children’s Book via link below image:

Book Cover

http://www.valencyathompson.bigcartel.com

2) Download my song, God Please Clean My Room (from your favorite player, but itunes link is below):

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/god-please-clean-my-room-feat./id591875935

 

3) Book Me for Preaching, Speaking, Readings, & Workshops to all ages and populations via info@ValencyaThompson.com  – I cover an array of topics, some of my most frequent include:

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Our Little M&M: The Story Behind Baby JET’S Red Onesie & Hope for Couples who Desire Children

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  I posted a photo last week of our miracle, Baby JET. In this image JET was featured wearing a red M&M onesie. Like many things surrounding Baby JET, this onesie  has a story behind it, and I’m not talking about a “melt in your mouth, not in your hand” kind of story either ; ).

Some know that my husband Jerrell and I have desired to bring home a baby for a few years now; yet instead we have brought home many tears and heartache due to a series of miscarriages.

The interesting part is that even on our doubtful (human) days our faith reassured us that we would have children.

As a matter of fact, I recall a recent conversation with my cousin Nikki (who always believed we would have children) that was very powerful.
Nikki knows, because we have shared, that even some of the most seemingly faithful to God people wavered in their ability to encourage us at times; I guess in fear of not wanting to “get our hopes up”.

Either way, during this conversation, Nikki shared the reason she continued to believe that we would have children. Nikki revealed that shortly after our first miscarriage, she asked if we would try to have children again and my response that we would try again as soon as the doctor provided us clearance confirmed it for Nikki. In other words, Nikki believed for us because of our faith!

Now back to the story behind Baby JET’s red onesie. You see I have owned this onesie for around two years now. It has been tacked onto vision boards and even hung on the arm of my chair in my prayer room. As a matter of fact, this onesie is sized for a 12 month old.

Why did I feature a photo of Baby JET in an oversized onesie? You may ask. Well, as some may recall, I was invited to perform a book reading and discussion of “God Please Clean My Room” in New York two years back. 

The day prior I was walking with my friend Kim, as we both were pregnant and wanted to maintain our health. Kim’s motivation was prompted by her doctor, while my motivation was to overcome my fear.

Though doctor’s reassured me  that my miscarriages had nothing to do with my engaging in any physical activity, somewhere in the back of my mind I blamed myself and avoided working out during pregnancy.

This time was going to be different! I was trusting in God to believe that this pregnancy would be successful & Kim, like many others who love Jerrell and I were believing too! So with my faith, I was leading Kim up the trail and striving to push her to match my pace as I was gaining my confidence.  Kim and I returned to our cars and agreed to meet up regularly to maintain healthy weights during our pregnancies.  So you can imagine my dismay when I began spotting once I returned home that evening.

I contacted my prayer partners, laid down for the remainder of the evening, and even had Jerrell pack our bags while I saved my energy for our flight the next morning.

I was terrified, but hopeful as I spotted off and on the morning of our flight. I even fought to hold on to my faith as my stomach cramps intensified during the flight, but once we landed and I was “in the clear” I believed my baby was safe in my womb.

I became so confident that when our friend Anthony greeted us upon arrival at Felicia’s apartment, we shared the good news that we were expecting! The joy we felt was short-lived as my first visit to the restroom resulted into an all too familiar bloody stool.

I then, asked for Jerrell to travel to the nearest store to pick up some pads (AKA sanitary napkins).  Anthony accompanied Jerrell for support; meanwhile I remained in the restroom crying & praying.

As God would have it, Felicia’s apartment was walking distance from the hospital. Anthony was kind enough to leave us with his iPad for assistance, as he had to report to work.  Jerrell and I having done this before decided to skip the ER and asked if an OB/GYN would squeeze us in instead; while they accepted us, we still remained at the hospital our entire first day in NY.

The ultrasound tech, insulted us with the “are you sure you are/were pregnant” question prior to the doctor’s ordering a blood test to confirm our pregnancy.  This was followed by an apology as the doctor confirmed our miscarriage.

It was absolutely terrible sitting in a waiting room full of pregnant bellies, as I knew I was losing yet another child. It was also painful walking by baby bumps on the street once we left the hospital.  It felt downright cruel to contact my home OB/GYN to cancel my upcoming ultrasound and checkup. At times, it felt like more than we could bear, and we did not feel equipped to engage in the spiritual warfare that was surrounding us, but it was clear that God was there.

Where? You may ask. God was present in our decision to acknowledge our pain, yet rest in the support of loving friends such as Felicia and Anthony, as well as, Kendra who purchased a bus ticket from NJ the day of because she knew we were hurting.

God was there in our decision to press through and perform one of the best “God Please Clean My Room” reading & discussion sessions I’ve ever done! For it was following this session that my dear friend Felicia looked into my eyes & said, “you were born to do this and you are definitely in your element”. Anthony reiterated this as well in that moment.

God was in our decision to sight-see, try to make the best of our trip, & tour M&M World.  For while in M&M world we took pictures in a photobooth and purchased a few items. One of which was the red M&M onesie that Baby JET was featured wearing above.  We purposely purchased the 12 month size, as a declaration of our faith that God would eventually bless us with a child that would not only be born, but one that would grow and develop heathily!

Thank you for reading our story. It is our prayer that it will be of encouragement to those who have endured similar trials.

Hang in there. Don’t give up.
Don’t give in & know that God has not forgot!

Below I have featured images from that NY trip. May they remind us all to never judge a book by its cover.

God Bless You!

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Keeping up with VALENCYA updates ; ) 

1) Purchase my Children’s Book via link below image:

Book Cover

http://bookstore.xlibris.com/Products/SKU-0105968017/God-Please-Clean-My-Room.aspx

2) Download my song, God Please Clean My Room (from your favorite player, but itunes link is below):

https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/god-please-clean-my-room-feat./id591875935

 

3) Book Me for Preaching, Speaking, & Workshops to all ages and populations via info@ValencyaThompson.com  – I cover an array of topics, some of my most frequent include:

Preaching Gospel icon

 

Girls and Women Empowerment Icon

1409588440271

Fertility Hope Icon

 

Girls GT Sex Logo

 

 

 

Real Love

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I am so in love right now!

I cannot tell you by simply using words how many different thoughts about parenthood, childhood, and the great expectations I have about my son’s arrival.

I am currently 31 weeks 1 day (approaching 2 days) pregnant & I am absolutely ecstatic. Some of you know my story and others may be new to my writings. Either way, I am 4 years, 3 months married and my spouse and I have been a couple for 8 years. Geesh that sounds like a lot of time to me being in my early 30s. My spouse and I have experienced 3 confirmed miscarriages, though I believe there were more, and needless to say, the road to parenthood  has been difficult and sad for us.

Well in the midst of all of the love  I have been feeling, I have been doing a lot of reflection, and I have come to the realization that the painful parts of my journey have caused me to receive God’s love and appreciate God’s blessings even more!

I now realize with the life that I feel growing and moving inside of me that my priorities have completely shifted, it’s like nothing else even matters at all.  Allow me to be clear, individuals who know me understand that historically I am a very ambitious woman with many goals, and I typically have no problem with pursuing more than one project at once.

Yet something is quite different this time. It is as though I have tunnel vision and laser focus about the life of this child God has blessed me with and all other former priorities will have to “get in where they fit in”.

I remember my younger years and the plans that I had for myself, even back in high school. My plan was to attend a four year university, be married by 22 upon graduation, have my first child by 25, and you get the picture.

I don’t even know where those arbitrary timelines came from, I guess somewhere in my young teenage mind they sounded nice.

I didn’t stop there with the goals though, once I was actually married at 27 years old, my husband and I set a goal to have children by 3 years in.  This meant somewhere around year 2 we would begin trying. Because we were on birth control, I heard somewhere that it may take a while before we would find success once we came off it. You can only imagine the shock I felt when I experienced my first pregnancy shortly after! Truth be told, I can recall sitting on my living room couch in utter terror thinking something like, “we’re pregnant…what now?”

In other words, somewhere in my gut I felt we weren’t ready & I know as embarrassing as it is to say, I wasn’t ready to love as hard as I am now. I just desired to have a baby because it sounded like something married people were “supposed” to get started on by that point in marriage & besides “I wasn’t getting any younger.”

I mean who makes this stuff up anyways? We humans can truly be a piece of work on ourselves at times. Thank God for mercy and grace.

Would you know me, formerly “Ms. Socialite” & “be all to any and everybody” now finds her greatest joy being at home with her husband and dog, all while holding onto her belly with visions of her baby?

God is completely awesome! What is my point? Even this blessed pregnancy that shall result in victory has contained trials of its own, yet I am able to count it all joy simply because of God’s majestic design.

There is really much truth in the saying that “rainy days allow us to appreciate God’s sunshine”. Lord knows I am a “living testimony”.  Furthermore, things that I thought were simplistic in nature before have now become the things I value most in life.

And that my friends is my definition of REAL love.

Your take away: before you run off to pursue your laundry list of plans, ask yourself, “why is this important by this time?” “did I check with God?” “what will I gain or lose?” “Can this wait?”

God Bless.

Girls > Sex Entry #6: Hollywood & your Glamorous First Time

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I watched an old movie today (the name is unimportant) and I was reminded of a conversation I had a few days ago with a friend. It is amazing how Hollywood & the entertainment industry at large glorifies sex as something as casual as sipping iced tea. Furthermore, how some tween & teen movies, along with those geared towards adult audiences glamorize this false idea that as long as you feel something magical (i.e., lust, a natural biological stimulation towards another person) then sex in its raw form, outside of a marriage covenant is special.

To this notion, I toss up my hands and say, “Chile Puleeassee!” As I vividly recalled my own first time with this friend as she shared her own story, I said something along the lines of “Ooh that story isn’t too great huh?” She replied, “And who does have a great story about losing their virginity (as in what woman outside of a valued marriage covenant with a husband who mutually loves and respects her enough to commit to her before God and man has a story that she is fully proud of)?”

Now maybe she exists somewhere, but in the Kingdom of God this has not been our experience. It is time for some one to tell young ladies out here the truth.

In some instances, peer pressure has been the culprit, some rites of passage to prove that one is big and bad or woman enough to do the deed. In other situations, women have allowed themselves to be set up in romantic environments (i.e. why is this man in your bedroom in the first place? why are you in the den at night playing slow love songs?) You get the picture.

In other tragic moments some women have been forced against their will. God Bless you my sisters.

Whatever your circumstance, no matter your age, no matter how many times you have participated in the act, God has eqipped you with the tools you need to stop TODAY!

Don’t allow the enemy to whisper his lies to you any longer! “Oh you’ve already lost your virginity, so you may as well keep doing it.”  “Oh your first time was crappy, so you have to do it again to redeem that experience.” “Oh, you’re a grown woman, it’s 2014 & how else do you expect to keep/catch a man?”

I could think of Satan’s lies and excuses for you to take less than God’s best for you all day long, but I know you, my smart cookies, already get the picture.
; )

The Bible tells us that “for every temptation there is a way of escape” (Google it for yourself).

Don’t believe this is actually true? Take a moment right now to pause and think back on the last time you did something you weren’t comfortable with……Now remember the moment prior to taking that action when you decided you were going to do it. You get my gist?

Come on Sis! Walk out of this bondage today! You can completely do it! God has God’s loving arms fully extended out to you! Go ahead and allow yourself to be embraced by God’s healing touch today! God is all powerful!

Be Blessed & Love Yourself Right Now!

Testimony Thursday

I stumbled across this little boy’s voice on my friend’s page this morning and Lord knows it blessed my Soul (Yes, as my friend Joshua Scott reminded me just yesterday, I have always been an ole lady at heart)! This was originally posted in February from what I can tell & God is still using it and him.  *See my facebook page (Valencya Thompson) for video.

A beautiful moment in technology and social media. I know it is Throwback Thursday, but I’ma call it Testify Thursday. As I heard his car accident testimony, I recalled my own, one in particular. Those of you who have known me long enough may recall my worst accident that I was a passenger in while riding with a peer in high school. My own brother Rickey Taylor was quoted to say he thought I might die and when I returned to school following that summer Kasi Gerhardt even embraced me in tears stating she thought I was dead.

I recall regaining full conciousness around the next day or so in the hospital bed arguing with my family about needing to go to work at McDonald’s and they nicely checked me, as I had no awareness of my condition, and only knew I was sore. I struggled against my family’s will out of the bed because I had the urge to use the restroom only to collapse down to the floor. I soon learned how weak my body was, as someone assisted me. I recall standing with the support of the bathroom sink catching a glimpse of my reflection for the first time. I was astonished by the blood, cuts, & scrapes on my swollen face, as I heard my family discuss whether they thought I would be okay with the way I looked because they feared it might be permanent and because of my self-consciousness. I cried alone for a while and rejoined them. I was advised by doctors that there was shattered glass remaining in my arm and face & that it eventually would resurface on its own. You know I can recall pulling glass from my chinline even after college. Won’t God do it?! All that remains are scars on the bottom of my right arm. Overwhelmed by grace & mercy. I have Purpose. You have Purpose. We all have Purpose!

These photos demonstrate what remains today at 31 years young!

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Receive God’s Love Today!

The “Dream”

Keep Moving!

Keep Moving!

I was in a setting with a group of people who I don’t care to deal with much anymore.  The individual in charge was waiting on someone to preach, but it was apparent that this person was never going to show up.  The individual in charge was looking at me indicating that she wanted me to preach.  And I was ready because God placed an apparent sermon in my heart, but I needed to search for a scripture.

Well as I began to search, apparently some of my peers were growing restless so someone finally blurted out one.  Though I knew I could make it work, it is important to note that at the same time the scripture was blurted out, I knew what subject to search for my scripture under.  I tried to yell over the crowd to the individual in charge, but I made no effort to search for it myself, I just used what was provided. 

I should also say that a couple of friends who I view as an awesome support system were present .  Either way, there was a very small crowd, as a matter of fact, I am unable to recall any residents of the facility present.  The chapel was designed differently.  Instead of there being a wall beside the exit doors, there was a big black curtain serving as a partition. 

Back to the sermon, the word that God gave me was so powerful; yet I had to fight my way through some serious physical challenges to get it out.  I was badly congested, so much until I was sniffing in the mic the entire time.  I was coughing, taking huge gasps of air, and apologizing in between.  Either way, the people who were at odds with me began to act inappropriately, collectively got up, and exited the room just as I was reaching the climax of my sermon.  They also did so very noisily. 

In front of the partition it appeared as though “they” were the crowd and that only two or three remained.  For some reason the Holy Spirit had me walk to the back of the room where the opening of the partition was before my peers walked out so that I might preach at the rear of the room.  Over time, a huge crowd drew beyond the partition as though there were no walls in the lobby of this facility. 

I mean there were masses and masses of people coming to hear me preach, as though the city was coming.  There were people of all ethnicities and age ranges thirsting to hear this direct Word of God.

At the end of the dream, the Holy Spirit interpreted, “if you wait to respond to the people you can see (such as the “firefighters” who come to put out your passion – phrase coined by John C. Maxwell) who do not support you, you will miss out on all of the people I sent you for (clearly thousands)!

Stay focused my friends!  God shall not be mocked! Whatever arena God has called you to “minister” in this life, never allow immediate gratification or approval of others to determine your obedience and effectiveness.  Now let’s go!

Blessings & Peace.

“Be Still & Know that I am NOT God.”

As my Contextual Education placement comes to an end, I have gained much wisdom while saying,  “Goodbye.”

Though I had mixed feelings when I started at my site, which accommodates senior citizens and persons with disabilities, I walk away with cherished moments and learned life lessons.

I experienced a special moment with Nancy Love Wilson, whose name I have included with her permission.

In efforts to ensure that I “take care of myself”, Nancy shared her beliefs that despite the present generation’s obsession with it, multi-tasking is a disease.  She concluded that a person can be far more effective while focusing on one task at a time.

Nancy went a step further to share that one day while she was waiting inside of her car before meeting with someone,  she attempted to quote scripture to comfort herself. Nancy then said aloud, “Be still and know that I am NOT God”. Reportedly Nancy then thought to herself,  “Hey that’s not right.” Only to hear a still small voice say, “Oh, but it is.”

It was in this moment that Nancy resolved, as she heard her friend say before,  “I am a FHB, a flawed human being,  and that is okay.” For us, recovering perfectionists, this declaration is important for us all to make. It is important to note that we cannot be all things to all people, this would make us appear to be taking on God’s role.  As my professor Dr. Scheib says it, “the role of savior has already been taken”.  I would challenge us to remember this daily.  

Say it aloud with me,

“BE STILL AND KNOW THAT I AM NOT GOD!”

Blessings & Peace to you my Friends!