Tuesday, February 28, 2017

My Life Plan....

I know what I want to do with my life and what I don't. I'm making adjustments to do exactly what it is I want to do but my plan isn't God's plan for my life.

My plan looks good but God's plan looks Great! God has placed my feet on a path and provided me with direction and clarity. He's opened doors I never thought had a knob.

I'm walking into my purpose - can you see that? Can you see that God is using me? Have you seen how far I've come? Have you noticed the change in me? Have you noticed my posts are different than from 8 or 7 years ago? My language is different. My walk is different, my approach is different, my views are different, my body is different, my spirit renewed. Have you noticed?

God has taken this runaway child and placed me in his arms of protection where I didn't want to run anymore because I knew HE had me! I knew He loved and wanted me. He knew what was deep within me and He knew that one day, I'd see my value; one day I'd see my purpose. One day I'd see what He was offering me was better than anything the world could offer me.

Again, I recognize my purpose in life. I recognize that the choices I make will determine which direction I take so I make those decisions with Faith and Prayer - asking my Father for clarity and direction that my way is HIS way for my life.

I've never felt so blessed. I've never felt so loved. Even in my darkest hour - I am loved. Even in my darkest hour, I am chosen. Even in my darkest hour, God provides and takes care of all my needs. He hears my cry and comforts my soul. He makes His presence known.

I don't know where I'd be today if I continued to run from HIM. I'm exactly where I'm supposed to be today because of Him. Each day comes with a new game plan and with each play - God prepares me for the daily tackles against the enemy and evil forces. I will always be a victor because, in Him, there's no other outcome than to be victorious!

Do you know your game plan? Are you on the team "Heavenly Father - there is no other!" If you're not playing on this team - you're on the opposing team and you will NOT win! Join the team I play for today and make your mark on society! It's not too late. I extend you an open invitation to join our winning team!

Peace and blessings - Cindy*

Raise 'Em and Praise Him - Testimony Tuesday




A Testimony of Tenacity and Transformation


My name is Valeria Edmonds and this is a story about me before and after 2004. After four decades of a relatively charmed life, it seemed there was one crisis after another to hit me that year. However, like a phoenix rising from the ashes, I praised my way through a major storm and came back stronger, more resilient, and much wiser.

Born in Memphis to somewhat middle-class parents in a very large, close-knit and religious family, I am the oldest of four children and I excelled in school.  I breezed through the 1980’s with a string of accomplishments in high school including serving as President of my class, cheerleader, debutante, and I was voted most likely to succeed. I graduated from college and went on to get an MBA from Howard University.  The 90’s started off with a bang by me landing a well-paid position in HR with a Fortune 5 company, getting married to an aspiring attorney, purchasing a home and then becoming a mom.  In my thirties, I was on the fast track at work, very active in the community, a Deaconess and women’s ministry leader at my church and traveling to nice vacation spots once or twice a year while balancing a dual-career marriage.  Life was good.

After 13 years with the company, a couple of relocations and several promotions, I was asked to move for a position in our corporate headquarters for a critical developmental assignment.  It was one of those pass/fail opportunities, which would either lead to a senior management position, or not.  My husband was very supportive but we decided that it was best for his career if he stayed behind with the kids and join me later.  Six months into the assignment, things started to fall apart with my marriage.  Years of focusing on my career and working extremely long hours had taken its toll.   In 2004, despite the potential career impact, I decided to relocate back to VA to try and save my marriage but sadly we still went through a divorce.  I found myself starting a new job in a very high-cost area as a single mom trying to buy a house on one income at the height of a housing market boom.  During that time I also threw out my back and had to endure excruciating pain.  There I was about to turn forty, dealing with a simultaneous physical, financial, relationship, and professional crisis. 

My life had turned upside down and I didn’t think it could get any worse.  The divorce took a significant toll on my self-esteem.  My body looked very different after two kids and the dating game had changed. I went from being a hi-potential resource at work to someone that had to prove myself all over again.  Having always been fairly healthy and fit, it was very hard to adjust to regular visits to chiropractors, orthopedic surgeons, and taking lots of Advil.  The pain was so bad most of the time I could only get relief by lying prostrate on the floor and I joked that God was forcing me to learn how to pray. However, the biggest adjustment by far was becoming a single mom. I found myself in a position of needing a lot of help in a town where I didn’t have any family and I was not used to asking for help.  The “S” had to be ripped off my chest.

A pivotal moment came during a conversation with a spiritual mentor who asked me to reflect on a conversation we had several years prior.  At that time I had shared with her that I felt God was calling me to become a Christian counselor. She knew I had a passion for mentoring and developing younger women but she said at the time, “You can’t counsel anyone because you haven’t been through any thing!”  She reminded me in the midst of my storm that you couldn’t effectively counsel others unless you had some challenging personal experiences to draw from and told me that my tests become my testimony. This was my ‘ah-ha’ moment.   I immediately began to see my issues as opportunities for growth and development.  I began to draw upon my spiritual foundation and resolved to become a better person by learning from my situation.  I joined the women’s choir at my church and learned to praise my way through.    

The road since then hasn’t been easy.  In fact, it’s been a long steady journey of self-discovery and transformation. Journaling, volunteering, and singing in the choir became my refuge as I focused on   
re-establishing a life not centered on work and being married.  I had to acknowledge and accept responsibility for some of the problems in my marriage.  I learned how to operate and be comfortable as a mature single.  One of the scriptures that helped me was Isaiah 54:5, which says “For your Maker is your husband – the Lord Almighty is his name.”   I recovered from back surgery only to face a cancer diagnosis with courage a few years later. I solicited and responded to professional feedback so that I could rebuild my career and I created a new vision for my future. 

They say, ‘what doesn’t kill you makes you strong and by trusting God for supernatural strength, I think I have become a better role model for how to handle change and disappointment without becoming bitter.    I am now remarried and a sought after mentor and speaker within my company and the community on leadership, change management, relationships, resilience and work/life balance.  I still work diligently to remain positive and to look at problems as an opportunity to be a better person. I believe my past challenges have made me a better parent and my desire to share my testimony to help other women gives my life purpose.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Cindy's Featured Artist of the Week - Dennis

Owner - Chantel's Cakes and Pastries

ABOUT THE ARTIST


DENNIS L. STANLEY


Executive synopsis: owner; chief executive officer; sole proprietor; hometown: North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina (USA); culinary skills experience: 46 years (have been baking since six years old); professional experience: 21 years; characteristics: esteemed culinary entrepreneur, creative designer, driven by passion for the profession, customer-oriented, public servant oriented.

In the beginning, there was Dennis Stanley. And, with that beginning, emerged a baker extraordinaire. For the time I am unable to remember, my mother’s kitchen use to be my playground. Being a stay-home mother, she spent an absorbent amount of time in the kitchen preparing our daily meals and making those delectable sweet treats. Barely able to walk, there I sat in my high chair observing the workings in the kitchen and paying close attention to how my mother worked her magic in preparing some of the best cakes, pies, pastries one could even imagine. Often reaching desperately to use my (own) hands to play with the dough and the batter, my mother would give me just enough of the contents to mimic her actions in the kitchen. Unbeknownst to her, she was creating a master of her own talent! By the age of six, there was no doubt that I was prepared to test my culinary skills by venturing out on my own. 

As I recall these early years, I would wait for my mother to leave the house to take care of some errands or to attend the Sunday service at her church. Knowing she would be gone for an extended time, I would begin my culinary adventure. Pulling out the mixing bowl and (all) the ingredients she used for the cakes, I would commence my baking. Based on my observing her, I will measure the ingredients using no type of measuring tools; just a mere porcelain teacup, the mixing spoon, and my hands and finger tips. With a little dabble of this and a little dabble of that, I began making my own creations. Once baked, I would decorate the cake, pie or pastries to perfection, and, of course, treat myself to the entire delectable delight. Recognizing that I was forbidden to be in the kitchen by myself, I had to eat all the evidence and return the kitchen to a normal state before my mother returned home. 

On many occasions, my mother would complain to the household how her baking supplies (i.e. eggs, butter, flour, milk, etc.) always ran very low or was missing. While the blame was placed on neighbors coming by to borrow a cup of milk or flour here or an egg or two there. Such deception did not last long.  One day, my mother arrived home before I could hide the evidence. She showed me the white of her eyes that I have never seen before, and she showed my hind side the feeling of her palm that it never had before. At that moment, it was a point of no return. Reprimanded to my room to contemplate my digressions, it provided time for me to reflect. It was then I realized that I could not give up my desire to bake, but I had to revamp my cooking strategies that allowed for a shorter preparation time that would accommodate by mother’s schedule. It was long before she understood what she was nurturing: a masterful culinary artist!

*****

Established as a leading small business for more than 20 years; reputable customer service and satisfaction, and respected business; known for its innovate delectable treats individually designed to customer specification; recognized for tailored baked goods for sensitive clients: allergy suffers, diabetic conditions, lactose intolerant, gluten-free and healthy-lifestyle conscious.

Reflecting on the birth of my daughter, it was then I realized what to name my business. There she was lying in the softness of a blanket as if she was perfectly decorated in the smoothness of fondant, a  confectionary icing used to sculpt cakes and pastries. Her skin glistened like the perfect baked layers of a cake, something any culinary cake and pastry maker would be proud. Her bright eyes and innocent smile accentuated her face, like the roses and decorative loops that embellished the most beautiful wedding cake. It was then I realized just the essence of her being truly reflected what I would call my business: CHANTEL’s (Cakes and Pastries)!

Chantel’s Cakes and Pastries evolved out of a personal hobby which initially started at a very early age as a way to appease an internal passion and to cater to the interest of a personal and local clientele. More than 25 years ago, in the 300 square foot basement of my home, I began testing my expertise in culinary baking. While working a full-time job, there were many evenings and nights dedicated to enhancing my baking skills and honing my creative talents as it applies to preparing cakes and decorating them. 

My initial customers were typically my family and friends who know of my talents and were willing participants in supporting my new venture. The cakes and pastries were prepared to personal order, which is very unique in a start-up business. However, customer satisfaction was very important; and the reputation of the cakes was very good. Of course, the local marketing stream (i.e. by word of mouth) added to the increasing popularity my tasty treats; and the demand became even greater. 

With the increased interest in the products, the challenge was balancing the demand of this new venture with my professional full-time employment. After much contemplation, I realized the importance of going with my passion to realize a dream that would now come to fruition. Interestingly enough, my personal hobby replaced my full-time professional employment; and it became the best decision I made in my life! Who would ever think I would position myself in such a way that going to work would allow me to entertain my hobby all day while making a living for myself and keeping Loudoun County residents’ palates satisfied with savory and delectable cakes and pastries.

The mission of Chantel’s Cakes and Pastries is to be one of the leading small businesses in producing and marketing the highest quality of innovative baked goods that meet and exceeds each customer’s expectation and displaying exceptional service to our customers. To be that leading business, Chantel’s has inspired a strong sense of integrity and trust in the quality of their products, while recognizing the importance of valuing the local community by giving back.

The leading philosophy of Chantel’s Cakes and Pastries is to ensure the customers find: Love at the First Bite! It is a philosophy that has come to represent the personal attention to producing our products. Each cake and pastry are made to the customer’s expectations. There are no ready-made products. Chantel’s offers baked goods that represent the tastes of home-style cooking. Our customers are assured the satisfaction that their delectable treat is created for their personal taste and full enjoyment. Chantel’s values the importance of each customer that enters our business and realizes that our customers are its best marketing tool. Therefore, Chantel’s provides great-tasting goods, aims for reputable customer service and satisfaction, and stands as a respectable business in Loudoun County.

Chantel’s has been diligent in recognizing the importance of customers feeling good about the business and themselves.  One of our unique offerings has been the ability to cater to a sensitive and often over-looked group of citizens in Northern Virgina: allergy suffers, diabetic conditions, lactose intolerant, gluten-free and diet-conscious. Tastefully, Chantel’s connects with the community by creating cakes and pastries that are tailored to the customers, to the community and to building relationships across the region.







Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Raise 'Em and Praise Him - Testimony Tuesday!


Ann

My Testimony stems from a passion I have to pour into the lives of others as it relates to Women who have never been Married and Marriage after the age of 40.  

As we grow up, a young girl's desire is to get married and have children.  This too was my desire, yet I was plagued with the fact that I was approaching 40 and had not experienced marriage, nor did I have any children.  My chapter in the book, Soul Talk details how I totally and completely surrendered to GOD after having failed previous relationships.  In doing so, I had to really put my TRUST in HIM because, I started to believe statistical data that would suggest the older a Woman is, the less likely she is to get married.  

Additionally, I believed that I would never have children because of my age.  To be honest, I suffered silently because I'd slowly become more concerned with what others thought of me as opposed to how I knew GOD felt about me. It wasn't until I started to BELIEVE what GOD's word said about me and who I was, that my focus started to change.  As a result, I put them together....TRUST + BELIEF = MANIFESTATION OF GOD's Word.  

My Mother passed in 2001 and prior to her passing she'd given me the Scripture, MARK 11:24 “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”
Little did I know that this was the start of my entire journey until I got married.  GOD was preparing me back then and I didn't even realize it.  Approximately three years later in 2004, a Co-worker gave me another Scripture (well, GOD gave it to her to give to me) and it too has become one of my favorite scriptures that I stand on to this very day! That Scripture is
JEREMIAH 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
Hmmmm....I was on to something.  All I needed to do was ask GOD and "BELIEVE" (this is exercising my Faith) and HE is going to give it to me! YAY!!! Then, HE said, HE has plans (which means HE's already working on something but I don't know what that something is.  It doesn't matter because I have Faith that HE's going to give me the desires of my heart as it relates to a Husband) to Prosper me and give me a Hope and a Future!!! Really GOD??? YES!! REALLY!!! So then, I heard a Sermon from a Pastor which said that I/we needed to be "Specific" with our Prayers.  Then, I received another Passage of Scripture, HABAKKUK 2:2-3 “Then the Lord answered me and said: Write the vision and make it plain on tablets, that he may run who reads it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time, But at the end, it will speak, and it will not lie. Though it tarries, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.”

So, now I put all of these three Scriptures together and I wrote a very detailed list of the characteristics I wanted in a Husband and what I wanted my wedding to be like.  I wrote the list on 05.13.04 & tucked it away in the Bible my Mother had given me prior to her passing and left it there.  The previous year (prior to writing my list) in 2003, I met a nice gentleman through a mutual friend.  The following year in 2005, we started talking & went on our first date in 2006. I also became very active in a Mentoring and Discipleship Ministry in my Church.  So much so, that I went from Student participant to actually being a Leader for the entire Ministry which comprised Men and Women, as well as Children.  

In my transparency with you, when we first started dating and our relationship progressed, we became physical.  The problem was the higher I would go in Ministry and the stronger my relationship with GOD became, the more I began to be uncomfortable with the "type" of relationship I was in especially because I was responsible for souls and it just didn't feel right to me.  I do let people know that while we are all human and we have to fight our flesh daily, I am in no way shape or form passing judgment on people who are in physical relationships and not married.  I let people know that it just wasn't working for me and especially because he wasn't ready to commit to taking our relationship to the next level - marriage.  

So, I had to make the difficult decision to end the relationship (2009).  When I did, I have, to be honest, I was afraid.  I was over 40, no children, never been married and those thoughts of not being enough started to creep back in.  I started feeling like it was going to really be hard for me.  Nevertheless, I made a decision to be right for GOD, the ladies who looked up to me, and myself.  In retrospect, it was the BEST decision I ever made because while I made a decision to be "ALL IN" with my relationship with HIM, HE was working on him all the time behind the scenes.  

Throughout the time we broke up, we would only talk on rare occasions (I ceased all contact and blocked him because I knew I loved him and I didn't want to be weak) and he respected my decision to abstain from sex with him or anybody else because deep down inside I knew what I wanted and so did he.  We were broken up for approximately two years and again, throughout this time I saturated myself with the Word and serving in Ministry.  

In Oct 2010, I was serving for a Women's conference and the Minister said, "You have been Praying about something and you think GOD has forgotten about you.  Well, I declare and decree that by the time you get home tonight, your entire situation will have changed."  As soon as she said that, I got a text from an in-programmed number.  It was him just checking to see how I was doing.  I didn't respond until I was about to head home and he called me.  We talked my entire way home.  On Christmas Eve 2010, he proposed and we were married on August 5, 2011.  August being the eighth month with a Spiritual significance of (New Beginnings) and five having a Spiritual significance of (Grace).  We both experience "New Grace" and I have been married now for over five years.  

While it may not seem like it, I have given you the "Short" version because there were several encounters I had with Christ throughout the two years when we were apart.  These encounters only confirmed for me that GOD had my back, my front, and my sides and there wasn't anything wrong with me at all.  At the same time, I had some not so good encounters with people who would say "mean" things as a ploy from the enemy to make me doubt that I was going to even get married.  But, look at GOD!!! Those who counted me out, obviously can't count! So, I just want people to know, if you write down your requests to GOD, no matter what it is if it is aligned with HIS will for you, HE is going to move on your behalf.  We just have to TRUST HIM, BELIEVE what HIS Word says about us and our situation and I PROMISE you will see the MANIFESTATION of HIS Work unfold in your life!!!  

I hope I've not given you too much or too little.  I Pray that this will encourage other Women especially if they desire to be married, to saturate themselves in the Word so much so that as their focus on HIM increases, the "him" will come.........

**********************

Ann Lorraine Esters-Stevenson is an Author, Speaker, Leader, and Coach who is a “Woman after GOD’s own heart” with an unyielding passion to “Pray it Forward” by pouring into the lives of others. A member of St. John Church Unleashed, Ann Lorraine has served in various leadership capacities as Coach for a mentoring and discipleship ministry. Having an innate ability to motivate, encourage and uplift, she has guided many to maintain a clear vision of themselves including healthy self-perceptions, relationship expectations and an understanding of who/what they deserve as their life-long spouse. Equally as important, Ann Lorraine places a deep emphasis on their realization of who they are as GOD’s children while walking in true commitment to their purpose.

Ann Lorraine has greater than 20 years’ experience in Corporate Leadership encompassing areas of Coaching, Development, and Continuous Improvement as a Six Sigma Green Belt. A Diversity and Inclusion Leader, she a huge advocate in sustaining a more equitable office environment while acting a liaison between HR - Talent Acquisition Staff and Historically Black Colleges and Universities, and leads various Employee-Business Resource Groups. Her Philanthropic accomplishments include Community Engagement and service oriented coordinated events with an intense focus on the underserved in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.

A Texas Wesleyan University graduate and Entrepreneur, Ann Lorraine owns A.L.E.S. Consulting, LLC specializing in coaching clients on the “Do’s & Don’ts” when interviewing for career or role changes, as well as AIB Creations, LLC., a Design & D├ęcor company for special events. She is married to her Best Friend and Husband, Shaun, has two amazing Sons, Shaun and Christian, and an adorable Yorkshire Terrier, Seven {007}. In her spare time, she loves spending quality time with family, traveling, collecting crosses, and interior design.

Ann Lorraine can be reached via the web at ladyannlorraine.com and she’s created a Facebook Group Titled, “PassionForPouring”. She can also be reached on LinkedIn as well as on Instagram @bigbeautifulsmile.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Cindy's Featured Artist of the Week - Japonica



ABOUT THE ARTIST



JAPONICA WALKER

Japonica Rena Walker is a native of North Little Rock, Arkansas.  She has lived in Texas for 12 years, where everything is bigger in Texas and you can actually experience all four seasons in one day. 

She is board certified Doctor of Naturopathic Medicine, author, and empowerment speaker for self-care and self-respect.  She is the mother of eight children, three grandchildren, and has been married to Eppie for over 30 years.

After completing a tour of duty in US Air Force, she decided to dedicate her life to raising a family.  She has spent over 20 years homeschooling her children, instilling in them a love for education.  All eight have completed a college degree, ranging from undergraduate to Ph.D. While homeschooling, she went back to school to achieve her Doctorate in Naturopathy, Bachelors in Business Administration/ Accounting, certification in Nutritional Counseling,  certification in Personal Training, and became an ordained minister.   Her passion is to educate and equip people with powerful biblical principles for self-care and respect and provide practical tools to help them to transition into their greatness and purpose.

At the age of 47, she did her first bodybuilding competition. She later went on to receive her pro card as a Figure competitor at the age of 50.  Six years ago she began her Essence of Excellence business, where she uses natural, holistic, and integrative therapies to service her clients.  She helps many to recover from health and weight related diseases, trains women and men in the sport of bodybuilding, designs individualized lifestyle nutritional programs, as well as weight loss programs. 

It has been her dream since the age of nine to have a life changing impact on the world. In the last two years, God has positioned her to see this dream being realized thru various opportunities and platforms. She has been invited to speak to many women’s groups on self-care and self-respect, she has been featured on Cheryl Williams’ Power Radio, Cindy Reed’s “Raise Em and Praise Him - Testimony Tuesday", and she has co-authored on her first book, Soul Talk, which is due to be released in March 2017. 

Dr. Japonica’s vision is to help people to use their challenges as an opportunity for gratitude and change of perspective, so as to acquire divine peace and directions for their optimal quality of life. “It’s time for us to walk in health, wholeness, and our greatness.  For His Glory!”  

For more information on Dr. Japonica’s services, please visit www.japonicawalker.com

Thank you, Mrs. Cindy, for all you do, and for this awesome opportunity to impact and change lives for His Kingdom.


Tuesday, February 14, 2017

"Raise 'Em and Praise Him - Testimony Tuesday"



Broken but God - Priscilla's testimony

God gives the toughest battles to his toughest soldiers. If this is true, God clearly thinks I am some sort of Black Ops G.I. Jane.

“David stop!” She yelled lifting both of her arms to shield her face from yet another violent swing of his steel toe work boot.

“I’ll stop when you’ve learned your lesson!” He shouted angrily.

He looked like a rabid dog on the loose. I stood conflicted, stuck between being frozen in fear and desperately wanting to pull him off my auntie. He was much too strong and my ten-year-old muscles were no worthy opponent of his drunken rage. I kept trying to figure out what my Aunt Cyn could have done to make him so angry. What could she possibly have said to him to make him feel that the only solution was to repeatedly bash her over the head with his five-pound boot?

When he finally grew weary of beating my dearest aunt, he stormed out, slamming the door violently as he left. As if nearly beating her to death wasn’t enough, he had to leave with a bang (pun intended) and slam the door on his way out. As I helped Aunt Cyn wipe the blood from her face and bandage her wounds, we both wept. I tried to hug her as tight as I could. She squeezed back tightly, sobbing so hard that I could feel her ribs shifting with every deep yell and whimper. In that moment, I told myself that I would never allow a man to hurt me that way. That would be a promise I couldn’t keep!

I remember a story about twin brothers who were raised by an abusive alcoholic father. One of the brothers followed in his father’s footsteps. He, too, became an abusive alcoholic. The other twin never touched alcohol a day in his life; not even a sip. Unfortunately, my story is patterned after the brother who went on to become what he saw. I, too, found myself suffering at the hand of an abusive man, just like my Aunt Cyn. 


At the tender age of 19, I found myself in a verbally and physically abusive relationship. No matter what I did, I could not seem to make him happy. The chicken was never seasoned properly. The bathroom was never clean enough, no matter how long I scrubbed or how much bleach I used. My hair was never enough. Literally, nothing that I did or said pleased him. I often felt like a hamster running aimlessly on a wheel, desperate to please him. Just once, I wanted to feel like I was enough. I longed to feel like I was worthy of his love and affection. Before long, I began to realize that I would never be enough for him and this was not because of any fault of mine.

One day as I was preparing dinner, something inside of me started to boil almost as vigorously as the water for the pasta I was cooking for the spaghetti, which was his favorite. I knew something was off with him, more off than usual. I didn’t know what was going on but I was on high alert and I was ready to do battle that night if I needed to. He walked into the kitchen, brushing past me quickly and heading toward the refrigerator. He grabbed a beer and then went back into the living room and plopped on the couch. That poor couch had become forever stamped with the imprint of his backside because he spent so much time there. Suddenly I saw something out of the corner of my eye. It was his full unopened beer can flying full speed toward my head. Thank God I saw it in time to duck. Surely had the can connected with my head I would have been unconscious, and perhaps not here to tell my story. Only God knows had I not been so fortunate, and so quick! Before I could stop to think about what happened, I grabbed the butcher knife out of its wooden block and flung it with all my might at him. “Dang it,” I thought to myself. I missed and it landed in one of our plants instead. “I have got to work on my aim!” I thought. However, if at first, you don’t succeed, you must always try, try again! Try again I did! I picked up the boiling pot of pasta and ran toward him. When he saw, me coming in his direction, he raced into the next room where our toddler son was sleeping, picked him up and held him up in front of his face, using him as a human shield. What a coward! I had never been more disgusted with anyone before in my life. Every ounce of my body hated every ounce of him in that very moment.

The look in my son’s eyes was enough for me to retreat to the kitchen with the hot pot of pasta and call 911. I was tired. Tired of fighting, tired of crying, tired of exposing my son to such dysfunction. I sat on the couch angry and defeated. He had no idea I had called the police until the knock on the door. I sighed a deep sigh of relief. While one officer took the report, the officer one placed Marcus under arrest. Once they had secured him in the back seat of the car, feeling a sense of relief, I cried out to God. Lord, help me.

Moments later, still sitting on the sofa, my son crawled and sat at my feet. Looking at his tiny little hand and realizing how helpless he was dangling in the arms of his crazed father, I cried out again, “Lord have mercy.” In the silence of a few moments, God spoke. “Gather as much as you can and go! You are free to go my child.” I sat and the tears began to flow uncontrollably. A soft voice spoke again, “You are free to go.”

I packed as much as I could in my Volkswagen Jetta, grabbed my son and left. Glory to God, I never looked back!

So, what happened after I left? Was this the end? The full story of my brokenness, my escape, and my deliverance are chronicled in my upcoming testimony, Broken…but God, which is set to release this fall. I am so grateful that God saw me worthy enough to provide a way of escape. God has no respect of person. What he’s done for me, he will do for you too. If you are reading this and you, too, are suffering at the hand of an abuser, or if you know someone who is trapped in the trenches, I want you to know that this is not the end of you. Hold on. Help is on the way! Pray without ceasing and believe that your best life is on the other side of your heartbreak. I am praying with you and for you! Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that there is no way out! God will always provide a way of escape. There is a holy purpose in breaking things and being broken. Our loving Father uses our trials and our brokenness to transform, strengthen and bless us! Only God can give your soul the release it desires.





Priscilla Haley is Southern Girl born and raised in Shreveport, Louisiana. She is the President and Founder of “Gods Girlzs With A Vision.” A foundation that is focused on introducing young girls to Jesus Christ and having a personal relationship with him, while also teaching them how to “Dream Big” and embrace their Visions.

She is an author and speaker with a desire to see women who have been broken and set from the bondage of their past. Her book, “Soul Talk” is an anthology of twenty soul-stirring women and their testimonies of how they “Let go and Let God!” scheduled to be released this coming April.


Contact info.
Email: prhaley66@gmail
Phone: 817-689-4071
Instagram:broken_butgod
Twitter: Priscilla Haley@brokenbutgod




Sunday, February 12, 2017

Cindy's Featured Artist of the Week - T. Renee


ABOUT THE ARTIST

T. Renee Smith

T. Renee Smith, certified coach, and strategist started her first business at age nineteen, on credit, with no business experience, and no plan. She built a successful enterprise, but later was forced to file bankruptcy, close her business for three years while wearing a camouflage green jumpsuit with thick white socks and army boots every day for 1,095 days in federal prison, and then rebuild her business from the ground up once she was released.

T. Renee's life has been a lesson on how to balance womanhood, motherhood, and wifehood while running a successful business. She has been on the brink of divorce because her business was her first love, and has beaten herself up as a mom because she was physically present with her children, but not always mentally and emotionally present.

T. Renee has been featured in national publications, including Cosmopolitan and Entrepreneur magazine as a modern-day business leader. She is super passionate about helping women entrepreneurs remove limiting beliefs and connect their mind-body-spirit so they can build a business they love, re-ignite the passion in their marriage, raise healthy children, and create a lasting legacy.

T. Renee is the best-selling author of The Authentic Woman: How to Win in Your Marriage, Family, and Business and Metamorphosis: How I Shed the Life Others Wanted for Me and Learned to Live My Authentic Life. Daily, she inspires more than 25,000 loyal followers across her various social media platforms and helps thousands of women business owners and leaders through her programs, coaching, and speaking.

Now a reformed people pleaser, ex-perfectionist, and recovered workaholic, T. Renee uses the lessons she has learned from her twenty plus years in business and more than ten years as a wife and mother to empower women to create harmony in their marriage, family, and business.

T. Renee knows for sure that “You have to be ok with upsetting people to follow your dreams, you can’t be all of who your family, friends, and society want you to be and still live an authentic life.” For more information on T. Renee's coaching and programs visit www.treneesmith.com.  







Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Women's Business Report on News Channel 8 - Press Release - Contact Cindy Reed for more info.



FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Cindy Reed
703-232-6813
cindy@womensbusinessreport.com

WOMEN’S BUSINESS REPORT

BEGINS 2nd SEASON ON NEWS CHANNEL 8

Washington, DC – (April 18, 2016) Women’s Business Report, a half-hour television program that highlights women business executives and entrepreneurs starts its second season on News Channel 8. It is seen the 4th Sunday of every month at 10:30 AM EDT. Women’s Business Report was created in March 2015 as a television special to commemorate Women’s History Month. The show, which was very well received, returns to the delight of its viewing audience.

Each program features dynamic women business leaders and owners who have a unique and compelling story of their success. “We are excited to continue our efforts to feature women in a positive and uplifting manner. The show provides optimistic examples of women who are making a difference,” says executive producer Alvin Jones. He adds, “In one year, we have effectively destroyed every negative stereotype you see on other television programs that portray women in degrading and unflattering situations. I hear from mothers stating their daughters watched the show and said, “Mommy I want to be like her.”

Women’s Business Report is currently casting for its upcoming episodes and is searching for women with inspiring stories. Women business owners and executives wishing to be considered for inclusion in the television show should contact Cindy Reed by phone at 703-232-6813 or email cindy@womensbusinessreport.com.

Women's Business Report is part of a News Channel 8 news and entertainment series.

About Alvin Jones Communications:

Alvin Jones Communications offers video production, webcasting, sound, public relations, and event production solutions. Projects include Cannes Film Festival segments for the TV Guide Channel, live streaming of Senate and Congressional hearings, and coverage of the NAACP Image Awards, the Grammys, and pre-Oscar events for MSN.com.

Alvin Jones, executive producer of television shows “Women’s Business Report” and “Planet Vehicle,” is host of morning drive show “T.M.I. (Too Much Information) on WERA-LP 96.7 FM.

He’s president emeritus of the Washington Automotive Press Association. Jones started his career as the host of the “Quiet Storm” on WHUR 96.3FM. During his stint at cable network BET was host and producer music video programs “Video Vibrations,” and “Midnight Love” and created “Rap City.” Alvin has also worked with CBS Radio, Sirius/XM Radio, and C-SPAN’s “Book TV.”

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35 E Street, NW, Suite 808, Washington, DC 20001 202-347-1415 info@alvinjones.com