It’s Okay To Not Have the Answers

“It’s okay if you don’t know what the answer is.”

“It’s fine if you don’t pass every test or trial.”

“It’s all right to stumble a little bit, because the journey isn’t about having complete and total understanding, but about submitting yourself humbly to Me and being open to learning all the things I want to teach you. It’s about allowing Me to fill you and equip you with the things you need to know, but also to help your development and growth in Me—to better your relationship with Me.”

I am finally learning that it’s okay…

I remember being 24 going on 25 before finally being able to see myself as beautiful. I am now 27 going on 28, and I’m starting to see that my self-esteem issue with not feeling “smart enough” is still effecting me both naturally and spiritually. I thought that when I passed that hurdle of thinking “I’m ugly, I’m trash,” that I had overcome my self-esteem issues totally, but I’m finding it to be in layers. So this is just another layer I will have to press through.

I hate not knowing the answer, or not knowing how to do something, or the feeling that comes with struggling to master a task that others around me seem to pick up with ease. It makes me feel incompetent and I hate feeling incompetent. There are times when I’m speaking to people and think I sound like an idiot because I cannot verbally express what it is I want to say. I often find myself trying my best to prove to my friends, “Hey—I’m not a dummy! I can keep up with you! See what a great conversationalist I am? I can hold down a conversation, too! I promise you I’m not basic!” The pressure seems to mount when a friend tells me how wise or smart they think I am…

…because then I feel as though I cannot let them down or disappoint by saying something asinine.

However, because I’m a better communicator through writing than I am through speaking, there’s always that one day where I do eventually say something ridiculous or off. My friends still love me, of course, and we can always look back at my absurdity together and laugh about it, but it doesn’t neglect the growing urge to be smarter. The desire to show myself up by yearning to be more, “I have to be intelligent; no one wants to deal with a person who’s an absolute dimwit.”

The problem is I never have felt intelligent. Most days I revert back to that sad, little girl who constantly told herself, “You can’t do anything right. You’re stupid, you’re worthless, you can’t learn anything, you’ll never go to college, and if you do, you won’t make it. You’re just stupid, stupid, stupid.”

Despite getting accepting into college, graduating and even furthering my writing with these posts, those thoughts are still echoing inside of me and I didn’t see that until today after spending a few moments with God.

Yesterday God pointed out to me that I lack understanding of His Word, “You assume that because you know it, you understand it when that is not the case.” He went on to remind me that just because a person can quote scripture and has several chapters memorized, it doesn’t mean that they understand it. “It’s just like in a classroom. Just because a child can parrot back to you what you’ve taught them, it doesn’t mean that they actually grasp what it is they’ve been taught until it comes time for them to apply it.”

I became saddened. I went home and I began praying for God to give me understanding. I woke up today and I was grieved. After reviewing over passages I studied, I became vexed. I started questioning every poem I wrote and words of encouragement with scriptures I gave to people. All this time, walking in the Lord, and I had NO understanding? Like none at all? As in NOTHING? “All the stuff I’ve written, all the things I’ve done for You…what have I really been doing then? Have I been given people a bunch of empty, feel-good garbage but no substance?”

The Lord then brought to my remembrance that I was never the one writing those poems, or doing those spoken word pieces, or writing those volumes of my church’s newsletter, or even writing those lesson plan articles on this blog—it was all Him. “You were not the author. You were an instrument that God used to get His Word across. What you’ve done hasn’t been in vain.” But I started to become discouraged. I’m an imbecile, I thought, I am an imbecile in Christ…how can this be?

That’s when Jesus said, “Don’t allow the enemy to discourage you. It’s not about knowing everything, or memorizing to pass the test, but about LEARNING. It’s about growing and understanding, building the foundation with Me you need in order to develop relationships with other people.” He went on to let me know that I don’t have to be a know-it-all. I just have to be willing to come to Him with a submissive and willing heart, ready to take in whatever it is He has for me to know. He reminded me how deep He is, and that no matter how old I get or how long I’ve been walking in Him, I will forever be learning more and more about Him—and that’s OKAY!

While I’m accepting that I don’t have it altogether and I don’t know everything like I once felt I did, I still struggle with the fact that I will NEVER have it together—I will never “arrive” and I won’t ever know all there is to know. God recalled to me how when I first started my journey I didn’t even want to pick up a Bible, let alone read it. Now I’m patiently taking the time each day to go back over previous notes and reread stuff again and again in order to understand what He’s saying to me, rather than just settling for the gist of it.

I’m not the brightest pupil in the class, but I’m not sporting the dunce cap either. Still, I will wear that cap if it means humbling myself so I can gain understanding from the Lord. At the end of the day though, it’s not about who’s the brightest or the most spiritually brilliant; it’s about knowing who God is to you for yourself, developing a personal relationship with Him and being ready to hear what He has to say the next day…even if it is the same verse, it’s never the same thing.

It’s weird…a fusion of complex, yet simple little things. It can get to be tedious and wearisome…

But, I’m loving every minute of it.

Oh, and by the way, I still have my smile.

Blinders On (Poem)

(I suppose you could say this is the first new poem I’ve written for 2016. Today I woke up wanting to write a thousand things at once. I had poems brewing inside of me, dying to get out as I was writing this one. This year, whatever the Lord gives me to say or put on the page I will not tarry or delay in getting it done. I will simply just do whatever He asks of me. I hope that this poem blesses all who read it and that it inspires you to pursue after what God has called you to do.

And for me…that would be to write.)

BLINDERS ON

If you continue to allow the opinions
—of others
To dictate what paths you should
—take in life
By some unusually rare chance
You just may find happiness
But you’ll never have joy
Or peace

Restlessness
Stirs you awake
When the dream becomes a vision
So though reaching the end zone
Appears to be a hopeless task
The hope you have
Will not die within you
Even when you want it to

Especially when you want it to

I wanted my hope to fade away
The hope to dream, to aspire,
Achieve
I prayed it would be removed
Finding myself so angry
That I became infuriated with words
ALL of them
I couldn’t stand to see them
Reminders of how I could transform
—them into works
Of art
But left with the throbbing,
Mind-numbing frustrations
Of not being able to get them past
—my laptop screen
Help them escape the confines of my
—notebook

The struggle
Devising a plan that puts those works
Into somebody’s hands
Making a profit
While being a blessing
A prosperity prophet
And this in turn is why
God said unto me, “Not yet.”

You don’t look to bless people
Only to get blessed
You do it
Because it’s the right thing to do
Despite the days when those same
—people
Ain’t thinkin’ ’bout you
It’s the right thing to do
It’s the charge we’ve all been given

I have decided I must make this my
—new mission
The former was the dream I chased
The latter is now the vision
A dream evolved
Beyond me, myself, I and my pockets
Fill their hearts
Instead of seeking to fill your wallet
And God will take care of your needs

I have so many things
Waiting to burst out and explode
The issue is not a case of writer’s
—block
When I stare at blank pages
For several minutes at a time
The problem
Is that I have a lot of things to say
And the dilemma comes
In deciding which one of these
Will I say
First

Cleaning Out the Attic XV

(This will be the last one until I decide to pick up the series again. This last poem I’ll be sharing is called “Blank Space.” I remember several people encouraging me to date even though God was telling me to sit down. I then thought about how so often we waste each other’s time being in a pointless relationship when we know Jesus never told us that was the person for us. A lot of times we won’t even consult Jesus about the person we wish to pursue—we just go for it and decide to let the chips fall where they may.

Thank you all so much for following the series and I’ve got some new stuff I want to put up on here so #StayTuned for that. Thanks again, and until next time, take care and God bless.)

BLANK SPACE

Blank space is what I’ll call it
Blank space
That endless sea of white
Emptiness
It is never full
It remains open for new thoughts
—and ideas to come through
Then they’re gone
Erased like the words and thoughts
Off a dry-erase board
No traces
No anything
No more

I didn’t think it was fair
When some guy used me,
Lied to me,
Tried to manipulate my mind—
Only one of them succeeded
And spun me so deep in a whirlwind
I found myself in great denial

The denial was not their fault
It was me blinding myself
In an attempt
To ignore what was in front of me

The truth

Me and this guy
I so desperately sought to have
Were not meant to be
He had not been designed
Nor crafted to fit me
He was meant for someone else
And quite frankly
In a lot of cases
They were still due for construction
Remodeling of their spiritual foundations
With so many cracks and fissures
They were falling apart inside-out
Which is probably why they didn’t respect
—women they way they should’ve
Or,
It is more than likely the reason
They were like me

He’s not really my type
But eh, what the heck
They’ll do until something nicer comes

Occasionally some of the those same men
—got the short end of the stick
I had no intentions of being with any
—of them
I was bored
They thought they were schoolin’
—me
But they were actually the entertainment
A distraction from being single
By at least pretending I had some kind of
Love interest
But nothing legit

At the same time
It was tragic
Because I sought after those winks
—and flirtatious grins
Like a coke fiend doing lines
And as much as I hated those pick ups
They were pick em ups for my self
—esteem
Nothing like using the eyes of a man
As your mirror
And seeing a glimpse of the beauty
You never saw within yourself
It was exhilarating

They weren’t ever enough however
It just fed into my lust
Revealing that I had
Quite a few repairs needed
In the foundation of my own
Jesus knocked on the door
But I kept ignoring Him
I was hoping He’d think no one was home

I don’t think it’s fair
Wasting somebody’s time
When you know this relationship’s going
—absolutely nowhere
A friendship is not what I had in mind
Because when I advanced or he
—approached
I was not thinking of him in the same
—fondness
That I had for guy friends of mine

I certainly didn’t stare down
Any of the male friends I had
Or mentally undressed them multiple
—times
While running down scenarios
Of how the first button would become
Undone

Of course
He had to pass the screening
Within my narrow
Close-minded
Shallow and superficial perspectives
And those that did not make the cut
Didn’t stand a chance anyway
I had no desire or longing for them
So off to the friend zone he goes
Unless he tried to crawl his way out
—of that confined compound
Then I severed the ties
And cut our losses
In severe cases
If he was unrelenting to give up
I swung a sledgehammer with all my might
Aiming for his heart
…WHACK

Broken pieces littering the ground
I’d leave him to put it back together
One microscopic fragment at a time

Back to the present
A few years older
A bit wiser
And slightly more mature
Why string the man along?
Why continue to use him as a quick fix
—for my loneliness?
Why let him think he has a shot
When I’m really just using him
As a filler for the void hanging inside
—this small frame
Until the guy I’m really supposed to
—be with comes along?
Or even worse,
Until I tire of him and find a new
—man to occupy my time?

I guess they’re all just practice for
—the real thing, right?
—-
Look,
I understand your concern
But perhaps there are some things
—you should consider
Before interfering

God has us do things
That even those within the church
—house
See as odd
“You sure God told you that?”
“Well see, what I think He meant was…”
“I mean yeah, that’s good and all,
But what I think you ought to do is…”
You think I would get
A round of applause
For waiting on God
Especially for a woman at my age
Instead of choosing to be the wrong
—woman
In the right woman’s way

Constantly
I was the wrong woman
In the right woman’s way
I notice we tend to do that a lot
So busy being occupied
With the wrong person’s time
That God can’t get us to the right one
The one He made just for us
Could you imagine
What would happen
If everyone was using one another
As a placeholder?
How sad that would be.
And yet that is exactly what some of
—us are doing
We use people as placeholders
For the one true and living God

Jesus loves us with an everlasting love
But we scrounge around for the physical
The temporal
The stuff we can’t take with us
Nor does not last
As long as we hoped it would

As long as we needed it to

Being single is not a curse;
It’s a gift
Given to me by the Holy Father
While He uses this time
To work on me
And prepare me for the man
The man God said
Out of this rib will I make you a woman
—name Jacqueline Sìmone
And one day you two shall meet
Together you shall become husband
And wife

Singleness is not a curse
So much more of me gets to be used
God gets more of my time
I’m not juggling it
Between a family
A job
And a ministry
God gets all of me this way
He gets more

God is preparing me
So stop treating me as though I’m cursed
You have no idea what it is the Lord
—is doing
Or what all is going on in my house
You cannot see it
Therefore you don’t know
Nor do you understand

And I could try and spend more time
Explaining it even further
But you’d probably still try to debate
—with me
On my interpretation of a promise
Given to me by the Lord God Himself
So hush, be quiet
God has already written it
Therefore it is done
He has given me my instructions
—-
So no,
I don’t think that’s fair
To play games with a person’s heart
Knowing full and well
That person is not supposed to be there
And to tell God
After He made a promise to you
That you’re still going to do
Whatever it is
You’re going to do

Yes,
I could talk to any man I want to
Could spend all the time in the world
—with him
It’s not like I don’t get any men
Coming along with their offers
Rest assured
They come by
It is not my fear of being in a bad
—relationship
Nor unrealistic expectations
Of fear of commitment that I push
—him away

But my fear of the Lord
To do as the Father has said

And just wait

Cleaning Out the Attic XIV

(Just one more now. Here’s another untitled piece on how growth is very important in your walk with God. You should be increasing in your relationship with Him, not withering away.)

UNTITLED

We proclaim who we claim
But then,
Eventually, after while
We stop lifting up His name
Yet we say
We still trust Him
We’re still for Him

God reminds me
That all faith starts off
As a mustard seed
But mustard seeds grow into trees
Mighty, majestic, tall

So,
He asks,
Why is your faith
Still so small?

I could make up
A hundred and one excuses
But then I think
What’s the point in all that?
Let’s just get straight to it

I got bored with God
Somewhere along the way
And as I say that
I hear the words to a poem I wrote
Being repeated back at me,
“…if you think that God is boring
Then you not livin’ it right.”
I have not been living this thing
The right way

I improvise
Quite often
I make improvisations
When I don’t have to
Because the Word of God
Is right there in front of me
Problem is
I only read
When I feel compelled to

Or convicted

Either way
That’s not how this thing
Was designed to be
I know God’s got something
Great
Out in store for me
I do believe
But I’ve gotten too comfortable

Could this possibly be the reason
For why I allow sin in my life?
Possibly—it just might
I call myself looking for some excitement
Get as close to death as possible
Without fully kissing it on the lips
Forgetting
Everybody’s gotta die
Sooner or later
It’s the death after the death
That I don’t want to play with

I neglect to remember these things

And still
Though it does slip my memory
I constantly get bombarded
With reminders
From God
Through other people
And things
That I am His daughter
I am a child of the King
THE King
Name Above All Names
And besides Him
There is none greater
Not even me

I wonder
Constantly
Is this
Is this all I will ever be,
Is this all for me, Lord

I desire a grander scale
With good intentions
But for the wrong reasons
Which leads me to think
That if my reasons are wrong
Then maybe so is my intent

Faith
It goes way beyond
What you claim
It’s how you live
Not just how you look
But by your spiritual
Inner man’s appearance

We all have wobbles
From time to time
But no man should teeter totter
So much
That God questions their commitment
Due to lack of

And I say to myself,
Asking Him,
Lord
What is it I lack
And the Lord responds
“That, Daughter,
Is a question only you can answer.”

See,
A lot of times
We know exactly what the answer is
But we seek God hoping
For an answer we hope to get instead

And the truth is
I got bored
Because I was comfortable
In barely knowing Him
I feared the work
Knowing that
I’ll still be getting to know Him
Well off into old age

But that’s what happens
When you’re a know-it-all
You think you know everything
And when you come across something
That challenges this belief
Making it out to be untrue
Then suddenly you find yourself
Wanting nothing to do with it
You don’t want to fool with it anymore

God
I think
I just didn’t want to fool with You
Anymore
But I still come to You
Because knowing
What my life was like without You
Is a misery I cannot go through again

My faith wavers
But yet I stand
Resolute

Looks like I’ve got some watering to do

Cleaning Out the Attic XIII

(Two more until the series ends. This next one was originally titled “Ms. Beauty,” but was changed to “Ms. Lady.” It focuses on women and girls alike who feel the need to sexualize themselves, reducing themselves to a sexual object, in order to feel as though they have some type of worth. In some cases, these women parade around as though their body and their beauty is all they have to offer, therefore no one takes notice of their mind and all the other things that make them truly beautiful.)

MS. LADY

Your radiance becomes you
You look
Oh so radiant tonight
But oh, Ms. Lady
If you do not find
The true nature
Of your point of origin
You’re going to find yourself
In a tough spot
Staring back at an empty shell
A woman who’s thinking
About using all she’s got
While some man is standing over her
Lingering
Lusting over all she’s got

You’re more than a silhouette and a frame
You’re a somebody
And that goes a whole lot further
Than having body for days
You’re somebody
To Somebody
Who created you in His image
You were made
In the image of God
You’re unique
And you’re not fine as hell
Fiery damnation is unbecoming
Heaven sent is more your style

You mean something
And you’re more than what talents
Those men, those people
Say God gave you
Because He has blessed you
With gifts and with talents
That go beyond anything your body
—can do
And you don’t have to lay down with
—anybody,
Don’t have to take off a single article of
—clothing
Girl,
Ms. Lady
Hey girl

I’m talking to you
Yes
That’s right
I’m talking to you

Now go and do
What your Father said do
And give life
To that other beautifully radiant dead
—girl
Sitting right next to you

It’s a shame, isn’t it?
So beautiful
And doesn’t even know
She’s a rotting corpse

“I Bid Thee Farewell, Houston.”

It was some time toward the beginning of last year when I remember the Lord telling me He was going to have me move out to Houston. I recall how nervous that made me because:

  1. I don’t like Houston. I prefer the quiet and solitude of the country/rural areas over the chaos of large cities. Yeah, there’s a lot to do but it’s too much going on for me.
  2. I really loved being at home. Everything I know and love is at home. I had lived there all my life and I reached a point where I couldn’t imagine living anywhere else—not because I loved home that much, but because I had grown that attached.

Let’s go back to 2014 for a moment. I can recall thinking about my life then, wondering where I would go if I left my mom’s house. I hadn’t really been anywhere and I didn’t know what other places were like. I remember feeling comfortable and complacent with the way things were and I told God, “I know I have to get out on my own eventually, but I feel like it would take something drastic. I mean, I hate to say that, but that’s how I feel.” I could see the progress I was making and I could see my poetry was beginning to elevate, but spiritually I was plateauing.

As the year came to an end, my best friend called and told me about an opportunity she had been given to have a place to stay—rent free—while she finished her last semester of college. She needed a roommate and asked if I would room with her. I was totally okay with that, but I was nervous about telling my mom because I wasn’t sure if she’d let me go. Yes, I was 26 at the time, but I was still in her house. Her house, her rules. Surprisingly though, my mom approached me about it. My friend’s aunt came to my mom and told her, and that’s when my mom asked me. She wasn’t too happy, but she was willing to let me go and that was good enough for me.

Enter 2015. I moved in with my bestie about a week or so later and started my journey in the “real world.” We didn’t have much to eat and I remember waking up in the night with hunger pains. The last time I had, had pains that bad was when I was a sophomore; it was terrible but it was the very thing that motivated me to get a job. Before the end of January I found work on campus with campus dining. It was grueling, I almost had one day where I was ready to throw in the towel, but God put a wonderful lady in place named Tan who was patient and helped me through the whole process. Working in a kitchen was tough, but with Tan as a friend coming to work was actually fun. Eventually I got to know the ladies in my station and I grew to enjoy working with them as well. There were some rough and tiring days, but I was determined to see it all through.

That summer I went off to Kids Across America and worked at a summer sports kamp for urban youth (once you work there, you’ll understand why “camp” is spelled with a “k.”) I got on a plane to work 10 weeks in Missouri despite the protests I kept getting, “That’s a waste of time,” “They’re not even paying you that much,” “What exactly are you going to get out of that?”

Working at KAA ended up being the best move I ever made. From day one, God began to rebuild me and remold me. He showed me that back home I leaned too heavily on my friends and family, on myself, rather than coming to Him. I felt completely and utterly alone, totally out of place, but He helped me to slowly come out of my comfort zone. I started becoming a hugger (not in my character at all.) The girls in my cabin, all my new friends—everyone became FAMILY. I went from being skittish, skeptical and homesick to never wanting to leave.

Then while at kamp, my soror and prophyte Sandra Bland died…

I felt so many emotions…angry that she died, sad that I would no longer hear or see from her again, guilty because I hadn’t bothered to keep in touch with her. Her death revealed that I kept people at a distance to avoid the pain I ended up dealing with anyway. I tried to isolate myself, but my newfound family just wasn’t having it. I agonized over the fear of opening up to someone, anyone at camp but feared getting shut down with, “Oh, that’s really sad,” or “Oh, so sorry to hear that. I’ll pray for you.” Basically all the things I had said to others in the past for failure to empathize with them. I kept saying I had to be strong, but God told me, “It’s not about being strong, because I give you strength. Even when all your friends and family are gone and have passed away, I will still be here. I will always be here. I’m not going to leave you.”

I finally did open up to my cabin-mates and surprisingly they didn’t brush me off. They embraced me, encouraged me and continually loved on me. A lot of people at kamp did and I’m so thankful to them for that. I began to seek God more instead reaching for my crutches, I began to accept that I was weak and it was okay to be weak because I wasn’t designed to carry all that weight by myself. Coming home to the chaos around Sandy’s death wasn’t easy…it still isn’t…it has left a hole inside of me, but that hole has helped me to be more caring and understanding for those who have suffered loss in their life.

Once I got back home, I made the move to Houston.

Living in Houston had a lot of ups and downs. There were so many times things began to look up only for it to come crashing. I began to get frustrated with God and I kept asking, “Why did You have me come out here? I was fine at home. I feel like I’m wasting my time—I haven’t accomplished a single thing I wanted to do since being out here, so WHY AM I HERE?”

As I get ready to move back home this week, I think over the four months I stayed in Houston. I realize that I’m too much of a circumstantial praiser; I serve God too much by how I feel. I learned a lot of new things about myself: personality, likes, dislikes, preferences, etc. I developed new skills, took on new challenges and matured both naturally and spiritually over that time. Not to be mistaken, I’m aware I still have a lot of growing up to do, but at least I’m aware of it now. I’ve come to see that I don’t trust God in everything and I’m too driven by what I want rather than seeking God for what I need.

There are so many things that I have learned and now I’m taking it all back home with me. It took a whole year for God to prepare me and get me ready for the next season to come, and honestly, even when He told me what was coming I still didn’t prepare, but I’m preparing now. Whatever He would have me do, I’ll do. It scares me to say that because it means giving up control, but it’s what has to be done.

Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done. (Luke 22:42 KJV)

I ended my journey here the way it first began: on the Metro Bus.

As I took my last ride, I began to reminisce from my first time to that point. I was terrified and frantic; it was a breeze now. I came here knowing nothing, naive and unaware. I’m leaving a stronger, wiser person. So while originally I felt like my time was wasted, God has shown me none of it was in vain and for that I’m thankful.

I’m thankful…and now, I’m going home. I don’t know what the future holds, but I have to trust that God has it covered and press on anyhow.

Thank You, Lord. Goodbye, Houston.

(Click to listen to: Derek Minor, “No Quit”)

Cleaning Out the Attic XII

(Three more until the series comes to an end. This next poem I’m sharing is called “Honesty Hour.” I plan to rewrite this one eventually. Until then, I hope that you enjoy it and that you get something from it.)

HONESTY HOUR

Be an original
Make this piece an original
God placed you here to stand out
You don’t have time for copies
Be an original
Please
Be original

Grasping at straws
Handful of wisps
Digging and scraping
For justifications
In the pursuit of my own happiness

God
Don’t You want me to be happy?

The Lord tells me
I’m in love with the devil
And no matter how much I love him
The devil will never love me back

Satan has always hated me with an
–intense loathing

Yet I’m in love
And I don’t know what love looks
–like
Total infatuation
Although
It can’t be lust all the time
But then how would I know
I refuse to hold up it to my Father
To do so is incomprehensible
I  know it won’t stand
Because next to God
There is no comparison

Truthfully
I’m scared of the truth
Truthfully
I’m scared of a lot of things

For instance
I’m afraid to admit
I’m more comfortable
Opening up to 300+ followers
Than talking to my Savior
Perhaps it’s because I can’t see them
And they can’t see me
We’re separated by thousands of miles
And a computer screen

I fear coming clean
I have an accountability group
But no accountability
I hate to seek them out
Tell them when I’m struggling
There’s urgency to confess
I’ve fallen
Once again
Other days I await
For them to see through me
When echoes of
“Stop beating yourself up”
Pounds into my ears
As I think to myself
I don’t want to hear this
I don’t want to hear this any longer
However
Those echoes might sound different
If I stop withholding information

There’s a dark part of me
Its dominance is apparent
It quakes with terror
At the very thought
That I just might get my wish
And they just might speak their minds
And I
I will have to listen to them say things
That will more than likely cut deep
But are what need to be said

Still I choose the right to remain silent
I have low tolerance for pain
I’m too tender-hearted

So I keep quiet
I don’t want anything I say
Being held against me
When they check on me
Or ask how I’m doing
I say I’m okay
Even when I’m not
I say I’m okay
If I run into them in person
It’s show time
I think to myself
“Okay Jacqueline, smile wide!”

I read somewhere once
You can hide a lot behind a smile
I’ve been practicing
I think I’m betting better at it

And perhaps
Perhaps they’re right
Maybe I am beating myself up
Or then again
It could be
That I’m just too real for myself
I mean
That’s a natural reaction, right?
Especially when you’ve been lying
–to yourself for so long
And going around pretending
As though you haven’t done
–anything wrong

I don’t need sympathy
I just need some honesty
But I don’t tell them anything
I don’t confess to God
I just choose to complain to Him

Men I can’t have
Things I can’t do
Staring at opportunities
Like this is a lose-lose
Do I really want to do this?
What other option do I have?
I have no idea what I’m going to do

What’s the cost of mediocrity?
I’ve begun to settle for it
Or rather I have settled for something
Much less than that
Less than average is cheap
It costs nothing to get it
But in the long run
It’s expensive

It’s eating up my funds
I gave over some real life goals
Give God an expression that reads
“Oh my Lord Jesus I cannot afford this”

Only for Him to return a stare responding
By asking
Have you forgotten who your Provider
–is?
Your doubt makes Me question
If you know Me like you should
Because I don’t think you do
And I don’t think, I know

You don’t know Me as you so claim to

All out insanity
Truth hurts
And I fear its beat down

Either get off the pot
Or scrape the plate

It comes as a whisper
But what does that mean?

Still
It repeats

Either get off the pot
Or scrape the plate
But don’t stick your hand into the
–furnace
And expect to escape
You can only get burned so much
Before the last touch
Is the very last touch
Before the last thing you did is the very
–last thing
You will ever do

Slow movin’
Gotta think fast
Caught like a deer in headlights
I’m about to crash
Slow motion
Jesus wants to take the wheel
But I won’t fork it over
Figure He’ll fight me for it
As I make the brake kiss the floor
While simultaneously revving the gas

I don’t want it to end
Not ready to let go yet
Just like this poem
I’m not quite ready
I’m not ready to end it
I’m not ready—

I’m not, I’m not…

I’m