April 12, 2019

At What Cost?

My parents used to say, “Anything worth having is worth fighting for.” Sometimes the journey to destiny is just that, a fight. When Esther was selected as a candidate to become queen, she spent an entire year being scrutinized and groomed before she got the crown (Esther 1 and 2). I imagine some of the other hopefuls undermined and sniped at her. Esther could not allow herself to be distracted. Passing the initial tests earned her a crown, but the crown positioned her to save her people. She had to overcome doubt, fear of disappointing herself, and fear of death. 

There are tough challenges on your road to destiny. Will you push through the things that block your path? Are you willing to pay the price? Will you fight to stay focused? Please, don't give up. You have what it takes to keep moving. Ask yourself, “What am I willing to suffer?” Queen Esther was confronted by her elder (Cousin Mordecai) who reminded her that if she would not go to the King uninvited, God would use someone else. She humbled herself and admitted it would be impossible to move forward without guidance from the Lord and the support of her people. Gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my attendants will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king, even though it is against the law. And if I perish, I perish (Esther 4:16). It was a do or die moment.

There is no getting to destiny without opposition. Esther contended with enemies. Her determination was bolstered not only by prayers, but eventually, the King’s favor.  She kept moving even though she was scared. Franklin D. Roosevelt said, Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear. Don't let fear control you.  

The cost of destiny is the sacrifice of your plans and desires if they are not in line with what God has called you to do. It is a persistent and perpetual posture of humility, even when it hurts. It is an unshakable resolve to move forward no matter the price. It is understanding that you need good relationships with those above you (leaders) those beside you (peers) and those you serve. The ultimate cost of destiny is relinquishing your will for God’s.

April 10, 2019

The Last Dance

Graceful fingers slightly curve
Arms above, her
Head tilts back, neck elongates
Body snaps,
And twirls, then twirls again
Leg goes up, extends, around
Then down
To touch the ground.
She moves like notes on melodies
Entwined, emotive symphonies
Her heartbeat fills the room
Ba-boom, ba-boom, ba-boom,
It touches everyone,
A flow
From head to toe.
We feel it.

Then, she smiles,
And we know.
We know her passion to
Awaken dreams
Thought dead in those
Who’d accepted
Defeat instead.
“Rise up!
Get moving!
You’ve got this!
You can do it!”
That is what she said.
And they rose
She knew it.

Soft arms
Fiercely embrace,
A sweet smile
Emanating grace,
Spontaneously unfolds
And wraps a multitude
Brings them together,

Childish giggles
Echo as they
Run among
Those gone before.
They gaze in awe
In rooms where
History’s laid out,
At things once old,
Now new to them.
Rotary phone?
A typewriter, and
Feathered hats?
Flapper dress and
Polished Mary Janes
Crossing lanes -
To meet?
“Yes,” she said,
“Don’t you
forget -
To remember.”

She kneels
at the end
of the number.
Arms outstretched,
Head lifted
Smile radiant
Eyes closed.
It was her final pose
The last dance we would see
Now every move
 is Heavenly.
She’s twirling with the angels.

In Memory of  Brenda Cooper