2020

I wrote this poem a couple or few months ago but made a few edits recently. This year has been said to be a horrible year, and we are just five months and six days down. This year started off rough for me and has continued on to be a challenge. In fact these past four years or so have been challenging (I use the word challenging because they were still blessings and I have learned so much). However, I remember when this year had just started a lot of people exclaimed that this would be the year of 2020 vision, clarity, the best year, and so forth. One thing for sure it has definitely been a year of clarity. It is like the curtain is being pushed back. But for me personally, this is another year of learning to trust God, another year of healing, and a year where God is drawing me closer to reprioritize and organize so that He can be first and everything else can fall in its right place. And this is the year for me to understand how to overcome and overcome those things that were draining me as well as distracting me, trying to keep me out of my destiny, and from healing and growing. So, this year is an uncomfortable one for me, and I bet it is uncomfortable for many others but this discomfort is needed. Let God open up our eyes and let God sit us down to have those personal and generational talks with each of us. Be willing and lean on Him for grace to receive His truth and His heart.


2020

I see you trying to be still

Trying to keep joy in the midst of chaos and sinking hill

This world is sick

And all signs point to last days

Some of us are so numb that with every new event we are unfazed

The spirit of deception is

Filling the airwaves and skies

Increasing also corruption and lies

People are dying and life ain’t the same

Coronavirus is spreading and taking lives

And it doesn’t care about your money, fame, or name

The foundation of our land

Is crumbling fast

From the seeds sown today as well as the past

Division and Racism

Pride and ego

Corroding the core of our foundation

Nation against nation

Money and fame are our gods

Fear and emotional disarray

Increasing every day

Everybody wants their own way

Envy and lust for power

The enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy

he shows up to work every day ready to devour

The fatherless and the widow, not to mention those whose hope is shrinking

And everyone in between

Authenticity of Identity and Empathy has left the scene

Some of our love for others and ourselves are sour

And some of us trying to find our voice and not cower

There is little respect and more destruction of the Black flower

Fighting to survive every hour

Police corruption and racial bias

My skin is a threat

No empathy or sympathy for me

They would say I deserved my death

Senseless violence

And pent up pain in our hearts

Many of our youth are lost

We must save our children

And receive the abundant life

But some of us are afraid to take up our cross and count the cost

Dreams and destinies fill the grave

Anxiety and depression are soaring

We have a lot of Elijahs hiding in the cave

Fear of persecution

Fear of being alone

We are living in times where wrong is right and right is wrong

We are drowning in despair

Reaching for someone to stop and truly care

We are starving for integrity,

Humility, and real love

And needing answers that only God can supply from above

By Tannika Moore

Annoyed To Godly Action

Ever had a time when you were so frustrated by your circumstances? (Raises my hand!!!) Trouble and their makers seemed to follow you everywhere you went. Every turn you made, they were right there to annoy you, derail you, and distract you.

Once when we were going to the place of prayer, we were met by a female slave who had a spirit by which she predicted the future. She earned a great deal of money for her owners by fortune-telling. She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who are telling you the way to be saved.” She kept this up for many days. Finally Paul became so annoyed that he turned around and said to the spirit, “In the name of Jesus Christ I command you to come out of her!” At that moment the spirit left her. When her owners realized that their hope of making money was gone, they seized Paul and Silas and dragged them into the marketplace to face the authorities. They brought them before the magistrates and said, “These men are Jews, and are throwing our city into an uproar by advocating customs unlawful for us Romans to accept or practice.” The crowd joined in the attack against Paul and Silas, and the magistrates ordered them to be stripped and beaten with rods. After they had been severely flogged, they were thrown into prison, and the jailer was commanded to guard them carefully. When he received these orders, he put them in the inner cell and fastened their feet in the stocks. About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everyone’s chains came loose. The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!” The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas. He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved—you and your household.” Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house. At that hour of the night the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his household were baptized. Acts 16:16‭-‬33 NIV

Anxiety, trials and tribulations as well as trouble makers may arise and follow you throughout life. They may make you feel so alone, hopeless, and even tired and annoyed. However, after reading these scriptures for the second time, I realized, thanks to the Holy Spirit, three things you can practice to lead your annoyance towards godly action. One, as a believer of Christ Jesus, I am in covenant with Him and therefore, I have authority over every demonic force (Luke 10:19, Luke 9:1). He (the Holy Spirit) that is in me is greater than he (the devil) that is in the world. Two, troubling circumstances are also opportunities to put my trust in God and keep my focus on God. Let me fix my eyes on Jesus for He is the author and finisher of my faith. Three, these are also opportunities to pull out two of my weapons (prayer and praise). Besides meditating on the Word of God, prayer and praise are other weapons to aid me in my battles. Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God instead of latching on to their despair.

Victory will come along.

Just keep on.

Keep praying,

And stay focused on Him too.

Keep praising God,

For He will see you through.

What has you in despair or frustrated? What things have you learned to healthily cope? What godly actions do you take to combat against your trials and tribulations? Why is it not a good thing to just avoid issues and circumstances? How does God want us to face them?

As I Look Back Over The Decade…I Got A Testimony

I saw people’s posts of their decade reviews and their end versus their beginning of the decade comparisons. This prompted me to review my decade and as I also looked at my 2019 vision board, I realized that God has been good. He is always good but sometimes the Holy Spirit need to give you a reminder. I saw some things on my vision board have been and are steadily being accomplished. And all glory goes to God!

I am also reminded some battles are not to be conquered in one fight but over a period of time so we can learn to depend on God. So some things may have seeped over into 2020 but be encouraged. I am speaking to myself too.

This decade, I became a homeowner and a parent/caregiver to a relative. I also started my online t-shirt business (on hiatus now and I am in prayer about it) and wrote and published three books within this decade. I was able to learn and grow professionally and spiritually. I healed from heartbreak and realized some of my deal breakers. I made it through betrayal and learned what true forgiveness looks like.

Instead of hiding it, I became more transparent in my struggles with anxiety and fear, especially with those I love. I also got my driver’s license in this decade and got acknowledged at work for my contributions. I saw my students grow and step out of their comfort zones. I bore fruit even during difficult seasons and impacted others in ways I could not have done without God. I also battled debt and high property taxes and saw God provide.

I learned I needed better self-care, I needed to set boundaries, and I needed to learn that I can’t earn God’s love. My family and I overcame some things I thought my family and I would not survive. I also learned that it is crucial to see things from God’s perspective. I journaled in my note pad like crazy. I did self-assessments prompted from bible plans and self-reflection. I blogged. I led a women’s group and bible study and we learned about waiting with God and learning to trust Him. I maintained a gratitude journal.

I travelled to New York with friends for the first time. I had a ball and it was such a faithcation. I went to a Christian concert at the House of Blues by myself and had a ball. I went to a Christian Education Retreat twice. I learned some awesome things. I learned about trauma care and self-love. I went to Atlanta for the first time and for a college tour, thanks to my job. Last year, my family and I found a cool, inexpensive place to travel to that is peaceful and a train ride away from home, thanks to not having at the time the money to go on vacation. I saw my family grow and get closer. I got such an awesome birthday gift in 2018; my youngest niece was born on my birthday.

I completed a Mental Health First Aid training for those who work with youth and realized also my mental health is important. I realized some of your battles people won’t understand and some blessings and successes people won’t cheer with you. The latter one broke my heart. I did the thing that rattles my nerves and spoke at a few events. I took deep breaths. I had anxiety attacks. I prayed. I cried. I prayed some more. I exercised here and there, valued my love for walking, and realized the importance of stretching every day. I worked on building my confidence. I started wearing a little concealer and foundation (something I thought I would never wear) and embraced my thick eyebrows. I learned how to do my own crochet hair styles. However, I still don’t know how to crochet a scarf. I gave up. I will try again this year. I learned that I enjoyed preparing Bible study lessons because I love God’s Word and preparing a lesson helps me to break it down for myself also. I learned that I can’t do everything or be everything, and that is okay. I learned that sometimes you have to encourage yourself.

I prayed for God to teach me full surrender. I talked with Him about being afraid and not feeling like I could make it some days. I have a ways to go but I am not where I started. And although I ended 2019 still feeling anxious, I survived. I thank God for being my Father, my friend, my provider, my coach, and my protector. I also thank Him for being patient with me and loving me through every season, imperfection, fear, and triumph. May I lean into God evermore in 2020 and this new decade not for what God can give me or do, but for who He is. I am nothing without Him and can’t do anything without Him. I am more than a conqueror. I am grateful.

Wednesday Scripture-Led Writing Prompt: Expectation

Writing is such an great avenue to take to express one self as well as to find some understanding about some things. On some Wednesdays, we will have Wednesday Scriptue-Led Writing Prompts. What a great way to meditate on God’s Word, pray, and journal!

Based from these scriptures, write in your journal what is on or comes to your heart.

As for me, I look to the Lord for help. I wait confidently for God to save me, and my God will certainly hear me. Micah 7:7 NLT

Expectation

As the sirens echo through my ears

And broadcast my fears

As my soul cries tears

I train my heart to turn to the One

Who is near

I look to the Lord for deliverance and care

I look to the One who fills me

When I am bare

Who loves me unfailingly and pursues me with mercy

I wait with confidence

On my God who saves

I pray with expectation

Faithfulness is the Ancient of Days

Rerouted…

This morning is as cold as a freezer and the air is crisp and gripping. Did I also mention it feels like another Monday, although it is Tuesday. So, I struggle to get out of the bed a bit. However, I awake grateful to God for a new day, read and listen to His Word, worship Him, and talk with Him. A day started with the Lord is a day better yielded to Him.

Upon leaving home, I miss my bus so I decide to catch the bus headed towards the Metra train to make up for lost time. The train tracker schedules for my train to stop at the stop I need to get off at to catch another bus. I have a lengthy commute. Anyways, one stop into our ride we hear that the train will run express all the way to the end stop. Ah man! I can get off at the current stop we just arrived at and wait for the next one but it is too cold. So, I stay on and am going to have to ride all the way to the end.

No problem. I will just have to do what I have had to do before, just travel back. I ride to the end. Now, I just have to walk down a few blocks and take another train. So, I walk to the Red Line and go downstairs and my train comes. However, this train confuses me with the fact that its route labels state not what it normally says. I get on because although the train states something different, this is where I am literally heading. The Red Line stays on the lower tracks (ground level) but this morning this train is riding on the higher track where you can see the roofs of buildings and blocks of homes and businesses lined up on our Chicago streets. I hate riding high up because of the height but God gets me safely to my destination and drives away my fears with this message.

I feel like I just took the long way around just to get to my destination. I have been rerouted twice but still heading to my destination.

What happens when you are rerouted? You have to take the long way around. Your journey gets interrupted.

Moses and the Israelites were rerouted. They had to take the long way after God led Moses to free them from slavery. In fact, God took them the long way and through the impossible.

The people got impatient. They murmurred and complained. They even wanted to turn back. Oh, I had that feeling this morning.
When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter. For God said, “If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” Exodus 13:17

Yet, God took them the long way because had He led them the short distance they would have easily went back. Fear and discomfort makes you run back to comfortable situations even if they were horrible situations. They had to learn to trust God step by step, day by day. They had to learn to depend on God. They had to learn to persevere and develop patience. Prayer and patience go together. Faith and perseverance goes together. You can’t have one without the other and we need all of the above in life and through our faith walk.

So, when you get rerouted, be patient. Maybe God is protecting you from something. Maybe God wants you to develop patience. Maybe God just wants you to trust Him even on a routine day heading to work.

Flashback Friday: The Walls Have To Come Down 

Happy Friday! Check out my post originally posted on Decmber 20, 2016.

What a rough year this has been and we keep coming to these mountains and walls. They got to move! So, when we started reading Joshua and then came to Joshua 6, we got the unction to pray concerning those mountains and walls and to pray in the prescribed method the Lord gave Joshua and His people to march around Jericho.

What walls do you desperately need to come down in Jesus’s name? Is it recurring debt, low self-esteem, issues on your job, issues with your children or your spouse, an issue that is recurring in the world that God has moved you to pray about, issues in your church, issues with your health? Gather scriptures concerning the matter because without God’s voice, wisdom, promise, Word on the matter, it won’t happen captain.

Then pray you won’t doubt even when it seems like there isn’t anything happening. We, ourselves, are on day 2 and day 1 yielded no change, but God had to remind us that the wall didn’t collapse on the first day. So keep going! Have courage. Fight the good fight of faith. Pray without ceasing. Sisters and brothers-in-Christ, you are more than conquerors. He that is in you is greater than he that is in the world.

March around the city once with all the armed men. Do this for six days. Have seven priests carry trumpets of ramsʼ horns in front of the ark. On the seventh day, march around the city seven times, with the priests blowing the trumpets. When you hear them sound a long blast on the trumpets, have the whole army give a loud shout; then the wall of the city will collapse and the army will go up, everyone straight in.” Joshua 6:3‭-‬5 NIV

What walls got to come down in your life? What don’t you want coming into 2017? Declare it be moved in Jesus’s name?

Gentle Reminders

As I prayed this morning, I asked God to help me to acknowledge Him in all my ways. My mind then flashed to last night of me reciting “as I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep”. That traditional prayer often rehearsed by parent and child kneeling came to my mind last night and just before I could try to recall why it was stuck in my head this particular day, my nephew turns his bear on that someone got him. It recited that very prayer, and I remembered that he has been playing it lately more frequently. 

This morning I recognized that God gives you gentle reminders daily to just stop and acknowledge Him, not because He wants to go on an ego trip. He wants to remind us in all our busyness as well as all our daily responsibilities and activities that He is still here and still invested in us. He wants to fellowship with us and adorn us with His love always. But sometimes, we forget God, we ignore God, and we don’t spend quality time with Him. 

I encourage you to acknowledge Him now. Greet Him with a big hug of praise.

So, I thank You Father for waking me up this morning and for loving me with an unfailing love. Thank You for looking after me while I slept and for being so merciful. Thank You for You just being You, such an awesome God I serve. And thank You for Your gentle reminders of Your presence and to just stop and breathe it in. 

Love,

Tannika 
_______________________________________________

What are some reminders of God’s presence or unctions for you to just stop and acknowledge God?

Mother’s Day: A Daughter’s Prayer

mother's day

A Daughter’s Prayer

By Tannika Moore

Lord, I pray for my mother

By first thanking You for her

I acknowledge that You created her for a reason

And it wasn’t just to be my mom

So, I pray

Lord that she seeks

Out her gifts and purpose from You

For You are her creator

Lord, I pray that she realizes

That she is fearfully and wonderfully made

And that she was set apart for Your use and Your use alone

I pray Lord

That You will grant her the grace

To reject all negative and deceptive comments, beliefs, and thoughts Satan tries to inject in her mind

I pray Lord that You will bind up

Every critical spirit that tries to pollute her mind and her emotions

Lord, I pray that she will be filled with joy and peace

Peace that surpasses all understanding

I come against fear that she may have for You did not give her the spirit of fear

But that of power, love and a sound mind

I pray, Lord, that she will see herself the way You see her

And that she surrenders every area of her life to You

I pray, Lord, that she believes without a doubt

And she prays without ceasing

Give her strength, Lord, to move forward and be what You have

called her to be and do what You have called her to do

Grant her Godly wisdom, knowledge and understanding of Your Word

Help her exude holiness and virtue continually so that her girls

may imitate these attributes that You possess

Help her to trust You and depend upon Your strength

for only with You there is stability and security

Give her direction for her children

Help her to be anxious about nothing even when it comes

to her children, but to pray about everything

Lord, help her to forgive and

Love even when it becomes difficult

Build her up and encourage her

And let her learn to encourage herself when others won’t

Let her not lose sight of the visions and dreams You have placed in her heart

Let her have time to devote to You

And let her experience Your presence in her devotion time

Help her to take time also for herself as well as to reflect and laugh

Let her identity be wrapped up in You Lord

Let her know that her prayers are not in vain

Her praise has not gone unnoticed and her tears have not gone unseen.

Now Lord, I pray that Your angels encamp round about her;

protect her, guard her heart and her mind

Lord, I pray that she develops the fear of the Lord

within her heart and the joy of the Lord always

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

And thank You for my mother’s love

because of a mother’s unconditional love

I know how you feel about me

From Setting The Captive Free poetry book

Happy Mother’s Day to every woman who has birthed a child in love and hope and who has nurtured a child through love and the Word of God!

For more information on author, Tannika Moore, and her books visit www.stcfpoetrybook.com