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Power of Acceptance & Change
Many are familiar with the popular serenity prayer. “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, The strength to change the things that I can and the wisdom to know the difference between the two. Can we just give some thought to a couple of lines from that poem. First, “grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.” Secondly, “God, grant me the strength to change the things I can”. Somewhere between those lines lives the sole purpose of this- my message to you. Where do we discover the freedom in change and the power in acceptance. Much of our time, we spend time complaining about what we look like, rarely celebrating the things that are working for us. Who we are, is who God made us, period We must learn to accept all the little nuances of who we are. Accept your height, weight, and shoe size, you can’t change them. Accept the texture of your hair, the shape of our nose, your dress size, you can’t change them. Accept our round butt, flat butt, or no butt, you can’t change them. Now, can you alter them, yes, but before you do, you MUST first accept where you are. If you want to grow from here, you must start from here. Perhaps you haven’t realize that words are containers carrying amazing power. What we speak and what we allow others to speak into us is what we give authority to grow as truth in our life. Stop allowing those negativity words to be spoken into you, before they take root. We should not willingly accept someone’s degrading negative opinion of us, as your truth. Our outer appearance is and never has been the total sum of self. Push the mute button when the, “I’m not good enough, cute enough, slim enough” song begins to play in your head, or from the lips of another person. There may be areas in your physical body, which may require some change, if you seek to you live a long, healthy life. It is at this place where you call on the wisdom and strength from God and will yourself to make these changes. Remember you can do all things through Christ, who gives you the strength. The “all things” means exactly that—all things including the struggles that you believe are unique to your situation, down to the issues that challenge the masses. God is not a respecter of persons. You ask, does it mean eating healthier? Yes, all things. Does it mean losing 100 pounds? Yes, all things. Does it mean working out? Yes, all things. Does it mean overcoming this bad diagnosis? Yes, all things. Does it mean stop smoking, stop doing drugs, stop sleeping around, stop sleep deprivation, and stop overeating? Yes, ALL things. We have to stop telling ourselves that our situation is so different, so severe, and so irrevocable, that even God can’t help us overcome it. This is where the Serenity prayer comes to life even more. God grant 5
you the peace and tranquility to accept what your own lil’ self can’t change. Be determined to change the things that you can and remember what God will do for one, he will do for another, including you. Being a size six is not necessarily a sign of good health, no more than having a little meat on your body is an indication of bad health. What I’m saying is, this whole “I need to be a certain size,” diet thing has placed our entire society in one of the most unhealthy environments of any economically developed, civilized society. What are you doing to your body? Pay close attention! Your body speaks to you constantly, are you listening? Are you waiting for a bad diagnosis before you take notice of all the red flags your body is waving in front of you? Our bodies were created o heal themselves, but we refuse to give them the nutrition it needs to do so. We are well-built machines that require proper maintenance, and we’ve been cheating it with these quick-fix remedies. A strong, healthy body is one of the best tools we have to ensure a beautiful life. What we eat affects our skin, hair, teeth, nails, heart digestion, and of course our weight. In addition to what we put in our bodies, what we do externally also plays a role. We know that a healthy balanced diet can deter sickness and disease. We know that physical activity (exercise) is a must in order to keep our bodies functioning at their optimum level. We know a size 6 dress size does not necessarily mean good health, or that a size 14 means bad health. With that said, let’s consider a few of the following pointers that may help prevent undue stress and assist us in living longer healthier more beautiful lives. Diet & Exercise Did you know that heart disease is the number one killer of women? An exercise program does not require you to join a gym—it simply means to adopt some type of regimen that addresses the body’s need to be active. Start by walking your block at a moderate pace, doing 15–20 sit-ups every morning before getting out of bed, or doing 30–40 knee raises while preparing for work. The key is doing some activity that gets the blood moving and your heart pumping. It’s not about losing weight or getting to a certain size; it’s about having a good, strong heart; strong, healthy muscles, joints, and bones; and making certain that all of your internal organs receive the proper blood flow to function at their optimum levels. Your Skin Did you know that your skin is your body’s largest organ? Yep. It serves a multitude of purposes—it takes a lickin’ but keeps on tickin’. I believe there is a lot of truth in the ole saying, beauty’s only skin deep. Below the surface of this large organ is where the real beauty lies. It is composed of muscle, bone, cells, and lots of other good stuff—so it is imperative that we start once again, from the inside. Give your skin a new layer by giving your body some foods that will give your skin back that healthy glow: 6
Antioxidants Antioxidants neutralize free radicals. Free radicals are highly reactive oxygen molecules that damage cells and contribute to just about everything that can go wrong with skin—from dryness to wrinkles. Vitamin C Vitamin C is an antioxidant that is required for at least 300 metabolic functions in the body, including tissue growth and repair, adrenal gland function, and healthy gums. It also aids in the production of anti-stress hormones and interferon, an important immune-system protein needed for metabolism of folic acid. Omega 3’s Omega 3’s fight inflammation, which has been recognized as one of the top skin agers. They help protect against sunburn. Some fish with a good source of Omega 3’s are: salmon, tuna, trout, Atlantic mackerel, sardines, and pacific herring. Hands & Feet Use a pumas stone to scrub away the dead skin and soften those heels and other callous areas on your feet and hands. Use a moisturizer created for hands and feet that contains Shea butter or cocoa butter for that added moisture, then cover with spa treatment booties and gloves, or Saran wrap to lock in the moisture. Scrub your cuticles with a nail brush (hands and feet) while showering. Did you know that many infections get into your body through your cuticles? Clean under your nails daily. Your Mouth There is nothing more distracting than trying to hold a conversation with someone who has bad breath. It’s not a good look, ladies, and Halitosis (bad breath) can be caused by poor dental hygiene, tooth decay, improper diet and many other things, but can be easily rectified by taking alfalfa- 1000 mg / 3 times a day; myrrh, peppermint, and rosemary to brush your teeth; Parsley, chew a sprig after meals. Teeth Your smile is one of the first things people remember about you, and your teeth are the one feature on your face that everyone notices. More important, your teeth are the first level of your digestion. For starters, make sure you brush at least twice a day. Brush your gums, your back teeth, your tongue, and the roof of your mouth. If you want to be proactive in the whitening process, an excellent and inexpensive way to whiten your teeth is to soak your mouth in 1 oz of peroxide 2–3 times a week. Another inexpensive whitener is Plus White, found at any of your local drug stores. Try to replace your toothbrush on a monthly For desert have strawberries—as a matter of fact, you can cut one in half and rub it on your teeth; it will help keep them white! I hope you’ve been inspired to begin a life respecting the principles covered in the Serenity Prayer, but more importantly, that you begin to live a life that exudes Beauty from the inside out. Healthy Living Ladies!
Wendy’s Word Asking The Tough Questions By Wendy M. Reynolds http://higherheightscorp.com http://twitter.com/Wendymreynolds
What will it take for you to finally move forward? What goals are you working toward? What is hindering you? What would you do if money were no longer a problem? What’s your passion? What legacy do you want to leave? You must ask yourself these questions at some point in your life if you’re going to live a life that is purposeful and impactful. You have to move forward and remain accountable for making “continual” progress. I have two friends who I consider my accountability partners. They know what I am working towards. Not only do they pray for me but they also ask the tough questions about my progress and my obstacles. They know when I’m giving excuses and they always challenge them. They keep me focused and on track. Spend time reflecting on your life. Ask yourself the tough questions and be bold enough to receive the real truths. This week decide on at least one thing you can do to step forward in the direction of your dream and then do it. Maybe you need to apply for a new job or perhaps start going back to church. Maybe you need to reach out to new contacts or write that next chapter of your book. Maybe you need to forgive someone. Lastly, start developing accountability relationships. Who do you have in your life that you trust to be in your corner and hold you accountable for your call of greatness? Your life is meant to be fabulous and impact the lives of others. It cannot do that if you’re standing still. You don’t get off the hook this time. No excuses will be accepted. It is time that you begin leaving your imprint in the world and we are holding you accountable!
STOPPING the Pity Party By Minister Joy Clark Stop having your own personal pity party expecting others to feel sorry for you. If you really wanted to change, you would take action to change it. Getting into the Word, applying physical & spiritual muster and doing it. You will never find the satisfaction in a alcohol bottle, a sleeping pill, or people. They will all fail you. The only thing that never fails is God. Malachi 3:6 says, "I am the Lord, I do not change!". He is the one constant in life. Your spirit and your soul needs to be purified by Holy Spirit. Get your soul restored! 1 Peter 1:7 (NLT), "These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold-though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world." The Word says your faith is more precious than gold. Why are you putting your faith in things and not God? The God kind of faith produces and it is more precious than anything! You always say how the job has failed you, the boyfriend or girlfriend has failed you the vodka bottle will and has failed you. You may "feel" good while it's going down, but once the high is gone, you are left feeling the same way. Get out of your feelings! That's your problem! Your soul has been ambushed! Renew your mind, renew your soul, renew your spirit! Romans 12:1-2 (NLT) says, "And so dear brothers and sisters, I plead with you to give your bodies to God because of all He has done for you. Let them be living and Holy sacrifice -the kind He will find acceptable. This is truly the way to worship Him. (2) Don't copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know Gods will for you, which is pleasing and perfect."
Gods will and way is perfect! Why go for impostors? There is a flaw in your character that must be corrected. There are times when a ship or vessel may go off course, and course correction is necessary . Well course correction is necessary in your life. Proverbs 22:6 says to train up a child in the way they should go, and when he is old, they will not depart from it. The seed of righteousness, the seed of the Word of God was planted on the inside of you.
While you may have walked away from the seed and stopped watering it, the seed is still there and it's not dead, it's waiting on you to water it so you can grow, so YOU can grow! The seed of the Word of God is for your benefit! God's love is in you, and He loves you that much! So enough of the pity parties, drunkenness, pill popping, and trying to find satisfaction with people and things! Run to the one who created you and loves you more than you love yourself! Run to God, whose love is greater than these. He loves you more than you love yourself.
PROOF YOUR LOVE LIFE! “MAN or WOMAN… A Dog is NOT Your Best Friend.” By: Margo Hudson http://Twitter.com/DestinLoveLife http://Youtube.com/user/DestinationLoveLife2
Dogs! Most of us have experienced them. There’s all kinds of dogs around, but I’m not referring to the furry four legged varieties. I’m referring to a man or woman who’s regarded as unpleasant, dishonest, maliciously manipulative, or even wicked. The title Dog is also utilized as a term of abuse. Some women are attracted to and seem to go out of their way to connect with these crafty characters as if they were wearing an “abuse me” magnet! Ironically it’s not uncommon for this woman to believe that all men are Dogs. When it comes to men, it’s sad to see a man who’s with a Dog and don’t realize it until it’s too late. Then there are people who seem to always be picking up stray Dogs, not happy unless they have someone broken to fix! There are more than enough men in the world who exemplify this well earned tile: Dog. Openly boastful, this type of man embraces the title as a badge, often subscribing to the twisted ideology that women love Dogs. Interestingly enough, it’s usually these men who comfortably refer to women as bitches. It’s time to expose, clarify, and choose wiser! IDENTIFYING THE DOG A Dog in love relationship terms could be anyone with ill intentions, who could be classified as a liar, abuser, cheater, thief, leach, or simply a downright jerk! The track record of their dominant actions tell the real story. A Dog is always willing to maliciously manipulate people and circumstances to get their way. They are masterful when it comes to their power of influence. Psychologically, the Dog is projecting their fear and distrust of love and intimacy which only comes with one’s ability and willingness to be vulnerable. Some carry the heavy intention of “ Get them before they get you!” Never allowing themselves to grow close to anyone and develop a deeper connected relationship. Fear makes people act out in ugly ways. After all… it’s hurt people, who hurt people. What Does A Dog Look Like? 1. Won’t commit to you but always wants to use your body as a playground or dumping ground. Sees you mostly at night, and you rarely go out in public together for a date. This is often called “The Understanding.” 2. They have a “Type” they go for, and you’re their latest type: Ethnicity, financial status, particular car owner, body or hair type, skin tone. People become disposable to them and they’re likely to be serial daters who are never satisfied since outer gratification is only temporary. When they see a better version… Next! 3. If you’re a woman who’s paying for everything while he makes lukewarm attempts to gain employment, know he’ll never be responsible in the relationship or for his actions, because Mama will take care of it. Welcome to parenthood! 11
4. The smooth operator who uses phony flattery or good sex as a weapon to control and disarm you. They know exactly how to pull your strings to get what they want from you. 5. Their friends jokingly, and affectionately refer to them as “Single, Married People” “Slut” or “Whore.” Pay attention. Friends often expose the truth! 6. He’s offering you oral sex and barely knows you. Reality: Oral sex with women he doesn’t know well is “his thing.” Men, this goes for women who offer too! Just know that diseases are caught orally just as easily. 7. The Player. He’s overly protective of his cell phone, extremely secretive of text messages and disappearing to talk on his phone. He’s also the type that would keep pictures of all his conquests in his computer or cell phone. Yep, that includes yours too. 8. She wouldn’t be with you without your career and the extravagant lifestyle you provide for her. She may have hooked up with one or more from your successful circle of friends or work colleagues before you, in her relentless quest to strike gold. She’s money motivated and on a mission! THE MALE DOG Some guys just want someone there for sex whenever they want it, who will basically take care of them for the time being. You never meet anyone important to them, and if you run into someone he knows he doesn’t introduce you. They could be with you because they don’t want to be alone. It could also be that they are with you because they can’t be with the one that they really want. None of these things he’ll ever admit. This kind of Dog doesn’t consider you marriage material, and will never tell you this. Instead, they may protest or manipulatively use the wedding or marriage fantasy card to keep your head in the game, at times when your patience is clearly wearing thin from the mistreatment. He may try getting in your head by making you feel small with accusations, excuses, or possibly insulting you for even bringing up marriage or commitment. They may flip it to make marriage seem unnecessary, or make you feel like your “pressuring” them, or accuse you of the, “Ticking Clock Syndrome.” Either way, this dog is here to take whatever you’ll allow him to. When you complain he’ll make sure you pay with emotional blackmail or he’ll use good sex as his weapon. He’ll make you feel guilty for not supporting his cause. The perfect victim. How else will he get you to care enough so you’ll give him what he wants? The cheating variety of Dog is a crafty individual, who always justifies their cheating ways. Its either your fault they cheated, or they may give themselves a pass, due to the belief that this is natural for men to do, making it completely acceptable in their minds. Some women subscribe to the ideology, “Let a man be a man… as long as he protects himself and doesn’t bring anything home!” When a woman doesn’t honor herself by requiring a full commitment in a relationship, she willingly becomes a victim. She’s saying she’ll put up with anything to have a man, and you better believe he knows this power he’s got over her. Prepare to be Dogged… THE FEMALE DOG She is cunning opportunist. She’s dangerous because she knows her power over men and uses it to distract and destroy them to get her needs met, or simply hurt them. She’s easy for almost any man to have sexually for the right price. She may dress nice, have a beautiful face, nice body… and still be a glorified dumping ground. Buyer beware. She may lie or cheat on her lover for the chance to live a glamorous lifestyle, 12
meaningless sex, or she simply loves the attention she gets from other guys and goes too far. She could have a vendetta to treat men in the ugly ways in which some have treated her, and consciously or subconsciously this can become her twisted payback. The true essence of woman is not naturally hard and cruel, so once a woman assumes the role of the Dog in life, she grows hard and cold while in protection mode. Deeply sabotaging any opportunities for real closeness or commitment. This can be common with male or female Dogs. A person of this character acts out in ways they believe protects them from being hurt first. Running from intimacy. DOG PROOF YOUR LOVE LIFE! If you don’t have a fetish for frustration and pain, you may wanna rethink your selection of a mate. Remember… you have a choice! There are a few important things to remember when it comes to effectively Dog Proofing your love life. Time to get rid of the garbage! 1. Listen & Follow your intuitive urges about a person’s core or intentions, then act accordingly. They’re accurate. Trust yourself. 2. Stand up for yourself. Don’t allow anyone to treat you poorly. You have the human right to be respected and treated well. 3. Never be afraid to walk away from someone who’s proven they’re a looser. 4. If you're feeling used, you probably are. Talk about it. See if things change. 5. If they’re mean to you in and or out of the bedroom, and don’t consider your feelings or thoughts, this is the worst of the Dogs. Run! A person may not always be a Dog through and through. It could be that this is who they need to be at this stage of development in their life to grow. As humans, we’re all on a constant journey of learning how to manage challenges within ourselves in relation to the ever changing conditions in our outer environments. Remember, people are multifaceted, always growing and changing, so once a Dog doesn’t always mean always a Dog! While assessing your mate, just don’t be naïve. Also know that past behavior can often be a predictor of what’s to come in the future. Be smart. Be real about what you’re experiencing and feeling without talking yourself out of it.~ Thank you for reading! Please share with Love. DESTINATIONLOVELIFE.COM is Launching May 2013! We’re looking for passionate contributors like you for our amazing web experience, advertisers included. If you have something important to say about Love, Life, Health, Spirituality, Beauty or Sex… Answer the call! Apply@DestinationLoveLife.com WATCH THE VIDEO! Http://youtu.be/xVcYIT6g1e0 © Copyright 2013 Margo Hudson, Destination Love Life###, All Rights Reserved. WGA Reg.
-PERUThe South American Pearl BCF Travels For most people, Peru is just a country in South America and for some is the home of the Inca Empire and the place where they come and see Machu Picchu. But there’s much more than just Machu Picchu and there’s much more history in this small country than you could imagine. Peru is on the western coast of South America and has borders with five different countries: Ecuador, Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia and Chile. Its recent history begins in 1821 when eventually it managed to get out of Spanish domination but afterwards the country has undergone periods of crisis, both financial and political. It’s still considered a developing country and, the same as its neighbors, is fighting with poverty and high unemployment rates.
Ancient history Let’s forget about the actual economic crisis and go back in time to remember the times where Peru was a very friendly territory. The earliest evidence of people living there dates back to 9,000 years BC, but they truly became famous in the 15th century when the Inca people formed their South American empire with many battles and wars. Thanks to them we are able to visit and see archeological wonders like Machu Picchu, Nazca, or Paracas. Unfortunately these were the only years that are worth mentioning in Peru’s history because they were the only period when they flourished and everything was going good. After the disappearance of the big empire they never managed to get back and prove everybody that they were powerful people, like the Inca did. But they have to give a big thank you to this ancient empire because, up to this day, they are the reason people all over the world are travelling to Peru. But for now I don’t want to talk about the main attraction because everybody knows it, but I want to show that there are other things you can do in this exotic trip. We will not cover bars or social events because, even if there are some, these aren’t worth mentioning. If you go to Lima and afterwards explore the entire country, you will have one of best vacations for sure – there are so many natural attractions that you don’t know where to go first and the most beautiful thing is that they are all different. So let’s get down to business.
The Amazon rainforest It doesn’t matter if you like forest, mountains or the sea – this is something absolutely extraordinary and if you leave Peru without seeing the rainforest you can say that you’ve seen only 50% of what you were supposed to see. Because the roads are not that good (I don’t want to get into details about the infrastructure) it’s recommended you use a plane to get into one of the two villages that are the only access points into the jungle: 14
Iquitos and Puerto Maldonado. From here you will take a boat that it will go upriver and you would end up along the banks of the Tambopata River, in the heart of the Amazonian jungle. Just so you know 60% of Peru’s surface is covered by this Amazonian jungle, making it the second country after Brazil in terms of large rainforest. At the end of your boat trip, don’t expect a big hotel or some fancy bungalows. You will stay in a jungle lodge but trust, you will enjoy this. Sleeping almost with only a roof above your head (it’s an open cabin so you can see and hear what’s going on around you) in the middle of an Amazonian rainforest, hearing the raindrops and the chatter from the monkeys it’s a wonderful sensation, like nothing else on Earth. You will forget about your day job, about the traffic jams in your city, and the stress accumulated in the past 6-8 months will be gone instantly. You will be free, just like a monkey in a tree.
Colca Canyon I’m sure you know the Grand Canyon but according the Peruvian authorities this is grander. The view is not that dramatic because it doesn’t look like a hole in the ground, but it’s spectacular in every way possible. You can take a hike along the mountains and enjoy the beautiful views and if you’re lucky you may even spot an Andean Condor, the bird with the largest wing span – 3.2 meters. This is like a smaller and softer version of the Inca Trail (the road leading up to Machu Picchu) so you can come here first for a short training. You will start in Arequipa which is the second largest city in Peru, go through the mountains until you reach a height of 4,900 and then start your descending by going through the lush Colca Valley and ending up in Chivay, one of the most visited towns, renowned for its springs and exotic views. After you get a good night rest in Arequipa it’s time to visit the highest lake in the world. About Lake Titicaca there isn’t much we can say. It’s the largest lake in South America and it’s a natural border between Peru and Bolivia. Is called the highest navigable lake in the world with a surface of over 8.3 square km and is situated at around 3.8 km above sea level. The boat trip will be more like a time travel because it will give you a sneak peek into the ancient life – you will get the chance to see aboriginal people, people that are still living in the woods and have absolutely no connection with the modern world or with technology.
Sand boarding and flying From Arequipa you can go to Ica which is about 7-8 hours away or 3-4 hours south of Lima (depending where you’re coming from). Here you will enjoy two of the most exciting and extra-curricular activities you can take: sand boarding and flying. Let’s start with the most interesting in my opinion and that is flying. You will feel the adrenaline rush from the moment you see the plane – don’t expect a big Boeing with hundreds of seats because you’ll be in for a huge surprise. Instead they will have an old, very small (very very small) plane that will, surprisingly, function at full 15
capacity. But once you get after the “excitement” of flying in such a small plane, you will get in the air and once you start seeing the view you will forget where you are. Probably you guessed it by now that I’m referring to the famous Nazca Lines. There are drawings of animals of just geometrical figures that spread of thousands of kilometers and are visible just from the air. Nobody know who made them or why, but we know that these are spectacular. Once you’re on the ground you need to rest before going on the next trip because this one will use all your energy if there will be anything left – sand boarding. Since we have a desert with big dunes, why not use it to have some fun right? Get a snowboard from you’re staying and off you go, enjoy one of the most extreme adventures of your life! Be careful though because, unlike snow, falling on hot sand is not fun. If you’re not a fan of this then you have another option which will be attractive mostly for men and that is high speed dune buggy rides. Give them a stripped out car with a powerful engine and plenty of space to play and they’ll spent an entire day going up and down those huge sand dunes. Can’t be anything else than an exciting day!
Machu Picchu Eventually we were bound to approach this subject, sooner or later, as this is THE thing to see in Peru. Although The Sacred Valley is beautiful and attractive, nothing is like this big monument of knowledge and history, especially when it’s combined with a 4-days hiking and plenty of sightseeing. The Inca Trail leading to the Lost City is one of the most beautiful, but at the same time dangerous, roads in the world. Even Top Gear said that and they did it by car and haven’t spent time admiring the mountains and the exotic forest packed with all kind of weird animals. But the road is as difficult as it is beautiful – no wonder you need 4 days to reach the top. The best part is that every day you get to see new things and different monuments and it’s not just a hard mountain course which will give you a reward at the end. In this situation you will get small rewards every day, with a very big one at the end. When you get there you understand why it took you so long to get there and you will enjoy every minute of it. It’s just one of those spectacular sites that will leave you speechless – it is one of the Seven Wonders of the World after all! Enjoy it, take pictures, walk through the clouds, and take the memories home forever; your nephews will want to hear this story for sure! And that’s pretty much it about our “small walk” in the beautiful Peru. Even though it’s a small and poor country, it has so much to offer that you’ll need more than a week to be able to go and see everything there is to see. Don’t forget about Lima, its capital, which is a great historical and cultural center but at the same time go and spend at least a weekend in the beautiful Mancora which is the best place to surf in the country. We could go on and on and on about Peru but this is not something you just want to hear about, it’s something you need to see with your own eyes. Send us some pictures when you get back!
Designs by Madeline K
The Changing Game of Money! By: Jean-Luc Tahou
The incredible amount of wealth that evaporated in these past few years has even affected the higher echelons of wealth. Granted most ultra affluent individuals still have plenty of money left despite losses in the market and can easily ride the wave until things improve. However, the game is changing when it comes to luxury spending. We have to recognize that we are coming down from an unprecedented explosion in wealth levels, a new Gilded Age. Luxury brands had to reach down to capture those millions of aspirational dollars by offering entry-level items (such as wallets, key-chains and sunglasses) and ratchet up the exclusivity factor via one-of- a kind pieces in the tens of thousands (try a $200,000 Gucci trunk). Now that the entry-level segment is in essence priced-out, those that are left standing really are the truly affluent. Professional and affluent households represented a good share of the buyers of luxury/designer accessories. The same went for luxury automobiles. The good news is that this recession was across the board and no single group was left out. Regardless of one’s situation, the days of “affluenza” or conspicuous consumption are over. For the ones on shaky grounds, their money has to be allocated to more important expenses such as mortgage payments, car notes, and credit card payments. They are now forced to watch their discretionary spending due to the economic uncertainty. Some of us even have to provide for struggling relatives now. For those who are comfortably wealthy, the reduction in spending comes from a certain guilt associated with their status; a mild case of “survivor guilt”, if you will. They resort to discreet spending so as not to appear inappropriate in such hard times for relatives or others around them: “… there is no need to throw it in the face of someone shopping at Wal-Mart by showing off the new Louis Vuitton bag." A suggestion for the affluent is to focus on luxury staples, items that transcend trends and can last over time. A classic Chanel suit can last a woman for years and so does a classic custom-suit by Zegna for a man. Ditto a classic Burberry trench coat or a Rolex watch. Such pieces can be accessorized with less expensive accessories over time, but their apparent quality and timeless appeal will usually overshadow the rest. This idea can be expanded to automobiles, jewelry, and luxury services: practicality and quality trumps quantity. I would encourage all of you then to shop “wisely” and stack up on those staples mentioned above. They can be blended in with clever finds from Marshalls or TJ-Maxx. As you can see, the days of extravagant spending are now gone, but retailers and buyers have to adapt accordingly. Adopting the right outlook and a disciplined approach will guarantee that you can still maintain a healthy shopping regimen without breaking the bank or alienating your spouse.
Letter to Every Woman
(With Love) By Jerrin Holt http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-JERRIN-HOLT-Experience/309919219044
A young lady I have never met in my life messaged me with some very kind words about several thoughts I posted here and there throughout my facebook page, especially this one… “Lady, do not be troubled or plagued with burrowing defeat. You only did what you were taught to do, failing to recognize that I am a man in which they have failed to teach you about. You often praised me, smiled upon my being and blessed me with the effort of your interest, but I needed you to dig deep. I needed you to elevate me, encourage me, help mend my faults and conquer my imprisoning weaknesses. For my road to greatness begins with a woman who is the very essence of the greatness in which I aspire to be.” -Jerrin Holt Before responding to this impressive young lady, I prayed that God would allow me to say something to her that would provide clarification, justification or inspiration. Not to say that this young lady had turmoil in her life, but I saw this as an opportunity to embrace a woman through words and sincerity. As a man who is transitioning into the great man my mother raised me to be and the great man I long to be, more and more I find myself sharing my heart and an element of protective love with any woman open to receiving the temperature of my adoration. With age, my tendency to judge has seemed to fade which has allowed me to excitingly learn, listen to and vibe with almost anyone. God has so graciously allowed me to see the light even in the darkest of women. Age has also brought about maturity as I have become a bit more responsible and wise when handling my share of power. This power I speak of is a specific and natural power that God gives to all men. The power to uplift women or the power to beat them down mind and body. The power to protect or the power to selfishly ravage them. The power to let God’s light shine through me or the power to singe them with the weaponry of evil. And sometimes even with good intentions I still make mistakes, but my heart’s desire to do right by women is unfailing. I pride myself on being man enough to speak the truth of my heart and mind to any woman who needs to here such things, for the truth is a gift that will never age. Here is a self truth that is absolute no matter how us men try to bend or twist it. At the end of the day, we can only blessedly settle down with, create with and love one woman (a wife) if we wish to receive the very best of God’s favor. And because I cannot possibly crown every woman in the world as my own, I can extend a love comprised of prayer and respect. After all, the women of the world despite their status, mind-set, or actions are our mothers, sisters, grandmothers, aunts, friends and quite often our objects of desire. So I pray that God affords each and every woman the ability to maintain or attain a love of purification that rockets her to her destiny and fulfills her every need. I pray that at some point in their life that every woman finds her niche and aligns herself with God’s purpose for her life so that she may receive victory and Heaven. I pray that the inevitable rainy days of life sprout forth beautiful flowers. And on the sunset of strife, I pray that women are able to learn from their mistakes and allow a self-love to prevent them from repeating patterns of destruction. Most of all, I pray that women continue to build on the sacred bond of womanhood while teaching, guiding and assisting one another. If a woman cannot be for and aid another woman then it is foolish for her to expect such gestures from a man. I pray that bountiful blessings are bestowed upon all women so that in turn, they may bless 25
others. As far as I am concerned, the foundation of the world begins with our women who birth us and give us life. Personally, I have been extremely fortunate to be held accountable, celebrated, encouraged, inspired by and genuinely cared for by a few phenomenal women that have been an advantageous privilege in my life. Some of these women have recently entered my life while some of them have been a staple in my life for years. I would like to personally thank those women who have played integral roles in unearthing the majesty of God through their actions, their examples and their immense love for and towards me. They have been sisters, at times mothers and angels in my life. Through proclamation, smiles, hugs, kisses, conversations and gestures of kindness, they have provoked me to want better and do better as a man… I have decided to share the response I sent to the young lady I mentioned earlier. I believe that a lot of women will be able to pull from these words that were placed in my heart by the Lord. And because wisdom, understanding and discernment comes from God, I cannot take the credit. God is without a doubt the absolute reason that anything progressive, powerful or positive comes from me. I suppose by now it is no secret just how much I love women, as a matter of fact, the feeling that I have for the female race exceeds love. I would rather die than to exist in a place without the sight, smell and essence of a woman. Each and every one of you possesses something that is so special words could never accurately describe the magic that is you. And from a place of honesty I offer you food for thought. Always pray that God allows you to be a woman of character and strength who proves to be an enhancement and blessing to her man and her relationship. Your role and place is just as vital and important as that of any man. If you cannot turn to anyone for comfort, love, or reassurance always remember who gives you life and allows you to breath. There is an entity that crushes impossibility with just a simple thought. An entity whose excellence is beyond our minuscule imagination. An entity who can love your soul, body and mind better than greatest lover that has ever walked the face of this wondrous earth. So take these words and ponder them, remember them and live them. You all deserve love and happiness and it is up to you to ensure that such blessings come your way. Response From: Jerrin To: Charlie D… As a man with many thoughts and many colors in my head, I feel blessed to have "gotten it" at a young age. My attraction to women has been tempered by numerous experiences that have helped me to gain a clearer understanding of what being free to love really looks like and feels like. I do not feel that being attracted to a woman for her physical beauty is necessarily a bad thing. The outward appearance is usually the first thing that garners initial attention on both ends of the gender spectrum. The important factors however, are the qualities you discover about a person that accompany the physical attraction. Speaking from a male perspective, most of us were raised to believe that it is our job to protect, lead and give women the respect and love they deserve. But along with that, I believe it is also a woman’s responsibility to uphold her guard, cautiously involve her emotions and work at being able to decipher fantasy from reality at least until she has a very good idea of who she is dealing with when it comes to man. This does not mean she should be cold or uninviting, but instead, reserved and careful in her dealings and actions. As a conscious woman, you should not be concerned or troubled by those men who do not truly want or cannot handle a “real woman”. Being able to perceive this flaw in a man is equal to that of having the map to a minefield. Consider yourself blessed if you are one who can decipher this kind of man as you should be highly capable of avoiding atrocity. Never become so desperate that you are willing to settle and risk the effects of an explosion! Another important component to being a complete woman is becoming, believing and knowing what you are and who you are. That means taking the time to discover and build your own ideas, beliefs, interests and forming a connection with God as it pertains to you as an adept individual. Discovering your strengths and gaining a sense of worth and confidence without a mate will give you the advantage of bringing priceless value into your relationship with the right man. A strong sense of faith and knowing what you want will always expose inadequate men who are not worthy of your time and love. Each woman has a responsibility to herself to 26
acknowledge red flags and signs and then take action to detach from a situation that is not a good fit for her life or her purpose. In the midst of waiting and sometimes searching for the right man, optimism and positive thinking are critical to keeping you open and ready to receive the blessings God will send your way. In a world filled with many men who seek to drain and burn you with all kinds of motives and trickery, there are good and capable men who have accepted and actively seek their opportunity to be upstanding, outstanding, true and righteous men. If you remain ready and prepared to join forces with this kind of man instead of fighting, losing faith or shying away from men all together because of bad experiences, you will always remain closer to your ordained relationship than those who are controlled by fear and defeat. And if you happen to be involved with someone who offers no potential and proves to be poisonous at this moment, remember my words…”It is far better to seek fulfillment alone or elsewhere than to bind yourself to someone who seeks to destroy himself and you in the process.” Sometimes I find myself sitting and racking my brain trying to figure out how society can offset a lot of the drama and cyclic self-destruction for the next generation. I feel that it is vital that multiple positive and consistent influences are afforded to our children at a very young age. A joint effort from both the mother and the father to instill values, honor and respect in children, not only for themselves, but towards the opposite gender as well makes a world of difference in the shaping of a person’s life. If a woman is raising a child alone and the father is completely uninvolved and out of the picture, finding a strong male role model for the child is necessary regardless of their sex. Mutual respect is the single most important factor in a male/female relationship because it leads to a direct understanding of the value that accompanies the opposite sex. Sadly, a lot of single mothers end up pulling the weight all by themselves while some fathers drop the ball. It does not always take a traditional two-parent household to steer a child in the right direction; however the impact of positive, life-directing influences from both sexes is a major advantage in a child’s life and provides a more solid and complete foundation for a child to pull from. Fathers, or at minimum father figures, tend to stress to their daughters the importance in watching out for danger and providing her with a healthy love from a man during the impressionable years of her life. A father is also responsible for raising a God-fearing, sensible son who exudes respect and consideration for himself and those around them (especially women). Father’s can also set an example for their sons by being men who use compassion and consideration when dealing with women. Children are always listening, watching and learning. Sometimes the best lessons in life are indirectly observed. A mother’s influence is just as critical as the influence of a father or father figure. Mothers are our daughter’s very first teacher and help their daughters to understand what it means to be strong and have self-worth and class as a woman. Mothers should also demand and challenge their sons to take responsibility and handle women with caution. Women are to be honored and cherished and it takes a real man to do so even when a woman does not necessarily seem deserving. The art of unconditional love is the rewarding ability to find the good in people and be thankful for their worth and excellence regardless of society’s standards. You love them when they are up, down, young, old, in, out, etc… All in all, women must take charge of their own lives and exercise patience, discernment, intellect and prayer in the course of dating and dealing with men. A no “bs” disposition and command for the substance of a man to accompany his physical traits must be understood and absolute from day one. Cut things off right away and keep it moving if he does not get it or does not want to get it. For a woman, much of her ability to love and have love will result from never being too quick to love and allowing time to meticulously fasten together what God has created. Allow the man to pursue you and prove through his actions that he is who he says he is. Keep in mind that innately, men are predators who sometimes only see women as prey. For a man to date and consume countless women might not affect him on the same level that it will affect a woman. An emotional disconnection with a man coupled with an invasion of a woman’s heart, mind and body will leave her feeling violated and vulnerable every time. Too many failed, flawed and negative relationships can take its toll on a woman’s faith; her desire for a relationship or her belief that good relationships even exists. So if no one else uses caution when dealing with you, make sure you use caution and understand why it is important for you to do so. In the mean time, know that there are indeed men of valor out there who are prepared and are being 27
prepared to come into their most amazing privilege and blessingâ€Śthe woman God has made just for them. When this day comes, God will allow you both to understand the makings of true love and grow within a bond created through Him that no man or woman will ever be able to break.
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June 2013 Issue The Power of Acceptance, The freedom of Change