Happy Thanksgiving from Stacy Hawkins Adams
I issue this greeting with the hope that you're preparing for your best Thanksgiving ever! Let's face it, though: We've all got "issues"; and during this time of year, which can be the most festive and joyous, sometimes the circumstances, people, or things that challenge us most threaten to sap our gratitude.
This year, however, why not make a "Thanksgiving Pact" with yourself to find the roses among the thorns?
* When you want to complain, hold your tongue and think of something positive.
* When you're feeling overwhelmed or gloomy, turn on some music with an uplifting beat or inspirational lyrics.
* When you're distracted by what you lack, reflect on your life and rejoice in all the good things (material and intangible) that you do possess.
Decide how you personally want to spell "Thankful" and tuck these words on a piece of paper or in a journal that you can return to throughout the holiday season.
Here's what I'll be reflecting on during Thanksgiving 2010:
T = Trusting God Always
H = Honored to Share My Journey with You and Others
A = Aiming for Excellence
N = Never Alone
K = Keeping the Faith
F = Forever Grateful for God's Love
U = Uplifted By His Grace and Mercy
L = Living Fully the Life He Gave Me
Choose your own phrases and give thanks in advance for where your transformative words will take you.
I'm thankful for YOU and for your continued support of my writing and speaking endeavors.
Here's wishing you a Thanksgiving in which you can recognize simple blessings and be grateful that another day is yours to experience.
Happy Thanksgiving and Warm Regards!
Stacy Hawkins Adams
Bestselling Author / Inspirational Speaker
Igniting Hope that Fuels Your Dreams
Read the original newsletter here.
About the Author
Stacy Hawkins Adams is an award-winning author, speaker and freelance writer. Her six nationally-published women's fiction novels weave faith, social issues and personal growth themes into creative plots. Her nonfiction book gives women practical tips, scriptural guidance and inspiration on how to connect more deeply with God.
Stacy's fourth novel, The Someday List, maintained a steady presence on the Essence bestseller's list throughout 2009, and soared to #7 on the Kindle bestseller list earlier this year. The Someday List was nominated for a Library of Virginia fiction award.
Her latest novel, Dreams That Won't Let Go, hit bookstore shelves in January 2010 and continues to receive critical acclaim. Who Speaks to Your Heart? is Stacy's first nonfiction book. It was released in May 2010 and serves as a devotional guide for busy women from all walks of life.
She recently launched a group coaching service called Author In You (www.AuthorInYou.com), through which she and a select group of professional authors provide personalized motivation and advice to fiction and nonfiction writers seeking to complete a manuscript. She occasionally provides personal "purpose coaching" that empowers women to recognize their relevance and purpose, and succeed at a personal or professional goal.
When she is not writing, speaking or coaching, Stacy devotes considerable time to promoting child advocacy as a writing and marketing consultant, and community volunteer. Stacy lives in a suburb of Richmond, Va. with her husband and two children.
Connect with Stacy Online:
Thankful to be counted amongst the living!
by Electa Rome Parks
I am a worry-wart.
I always have been and probably will remain so until the day I take my final breath. It is what it is. Ironically, I don't worry that I am a worrywart. Possessing that title has its rich rewards. For one, I'm always on my "A" game---making sure I cross all my t's and dot all my i's. There is always a Plan B in place, just in case Plan A doesn't work out.
So. . . the spill-off or residue from being a worrywart is that I'm super organized and highly efficient in most all I do. I try to retain control in all I do, as much to the degree that is possible. You guys read between the lines. Okay, I admit it, I can be picky, a control freak and a perfectionist to a fault.
Over the quickly fleeing years that pass by in the blink of an eye, as my spiritual level and maturity has grown, I have come to realize that I should always come with my "A" game, but also realize that with God all around me---guiding, leading, directing and instructing my footsteps---I can eagerly give up my title, confident in the knowledge that I'll be alright. In fact, I'll be better than alright, I will be safe, sound, happy and secure with my place in this world. He always makes a way, even during our darkest moments. When you think you can't take another step, he'll do one better and carry you.
As we move towards Thanksgiving Day, I pause to reflect on all the wonderful family and friends that I have in my life. I have a loving husband, children that I am very proud of, people who love and care for me with a passion, just as I am. They accept me with faults, imperfections and even when I'm in worrywart mode. Plus, I'm living my dream each and every day. I'm creating the reality of my dreams and that in itself is magic. Magic surrounds me and I bask in its glory. I have my health and my strength and my sanity. What more could I possibly ask for or need in my life?
No, my life hasn't been without struggle and hardship. I've lost so many people over the years to death in my immediate family, but I'm still standing, solid as a live oak; I've never had anything simply handed to me on a platter, I've worked hard for everything I've achieved and appreciated it even more; I've had moments of doubt and uncertainty only to be given crystal-clear clarity; I've looked at the "other side" and thought the grass was greener only to discover it wasn't, it wasn't even green, more of an imitation shade; I've asked the question, many times, "why me, Lord?" only to receive the answer, "Why not you, my child?"
In the past, I've been hurt by men because I love deeply and they didn't appreciate my true worth; hell, I've been hurt by my family, blood; even hurt by my so called best friends forever, but I still rise; I've been down, down, down, but I've also been up, so high I could almost reach the sky; I've been disillusioned to the point of despair, but I've also been inspired by the goodness of people who care; I've cried buckets of tears, but I've also rejoiced in splendor at the beauty of the human spirit.
The green-eyed monster of jealousy has visited me a few times and I've fought him off tooth and sword because I learned a long time ago to truly be happy for other's good fortune; God has your back and your day is coming. What's meant for you is truly meant for you and no one, no thing, no situation can take that away from you. I've had my moments when I took to my bed, in a state of depression, sleep as my refuge, but I always got back up stronger and resilient with a fire burning deep within my soul. I've been to the mountaintop and it is a beautiful thing, but I've also been in the valley a day short and a dollar late.
All this to say: Life can be hard. Life is full of strive and struggle. But you know what? I'm so thankful! Thankful to be counted amongst the living. I'm thankful! Thankful to have a voice, thankful to make a difference, thankful to have a platform to speak, thankful to know all I have to do is see it and believe it for it to happen.
I'm so thankful that my reality doesn't have to be my destiny. I'm so thankful that I have a fire that burns deep within. I'm so thankful that all I have to do is listen and he will speak. I'm so thankful that all I have to do is ask and then I will receive. I'm thankful God moves through me which enables me to move people.
I AM SO VERY THANKFUL! HAPPY THANKSGIVING!
About the AuthorElecta Rome Parks
currently resides outside Atlanta, Georgia. After successfully self-publishing her debut novel, The Ties That Bind, New American Library, a division of Penguin Group, bought the rights. Electa signed a three-book deal with New American Library. All three books were immediately chosen as Black Expressions Book Club main selections and embraced as Books of the Month by book clubs across the country. Dubbed a "book club favorite," avid readers have embraced Electa's true to life characters that tackle prevalent and heavy hitting issues.
Since then Electa has become a bestselling author of several other mainstream (Loose Ends and Almost Doesn't Count) and erotic (These Are My Confessions, Ladies' Night Out, Diary of a Stalker and True Confessions) novels with Penguin Group, HarperCollins and Kensington.
The self-proclaimed, Queen of Real, Electa has been a frequent guest on radio shows, has been nominated for many industry awards and has been interviewed by newspapers, AOL's Black Voices, Vibe Vixen, Upscale Magazine, Today's Black Woman, Rolling Out and Booking Matters, to name just a few. With a BA degree in marketing and a minor in sociology, she is following her true passion and working on her next novel and first screenplay. To find out when and where Electa will be in your area
, check out her website at www.electaromeparks.com
To share your thoughts with Electa
regarding her work or to schedule an event, please e-mail her at [email protected]
7 Ways to Empty The Cup
by Talayah Stovall
There is a saying, "Empty the cup. Every time you empty it, it comes back twice as full."
Thanksgiving is a time for expressing gratitude and appreciation for our many blessings. Real weath begins with giving. Here are several ways that you can make a difference this holiday season by pouring into the lives of others:
1. Give Your Time - Babysit for someone who can't afford to hire a sitter. Take food to someone who is sick. Visit a nursing home. Send a note to brighten someone's day. Volunteer at a local shelter for whatever cause you support - women, children, the homeless, even your favorite animal shelter.
2. Give Your Talents - What can you do that would make a difference in someone's life? Can you knit? Style hair? Sing? Do you like to clean and organize? Extend yourself this holiday season by using your gifts to help and cheer others.
3. Give Your Blood - Every two seconds someone in America needs blood. Currently, only 3 out of 100 people give. Every pint of blood can save up to three lives. Contact the Red Cross for information.
4. Give Your Organs - Leave a lasting legacy. Register with your state and sign the donor form on your drivers' license.
[ READ THE ENTIRE ARTICLE AT BLACK PEARLS, HERE ]
About the Author
Talayah G. Stovall, Pres., TGrace, is an author, keynote speaker, radio host, life purpose coach and Managing Director of Vision Catalyst Consulting.
For information on speaking or coaching, as well as her motivational audio CDs, "P.U.M.P. It UP! and 7 Secrets to Ignite Your Dreams, her book, Crossing the Threshold: Opening Your Door to Successful Relationships, eBook, 150 Important Questions You Should Ask Before You Say "I Do", or newsletter "EmPOWERed to...", please visit http://www.talayahstovall.com, http://www.visioncatalystconsulting.com, or email [email protected].
Use Your Passion to Tap Into Your Purpose!
Talayah G. Stovall
Author, Speaker, Life Purpose Coach