Spoken Word Poetry: Fearless Faith (Taking A Page from Freddie Mercury) (Part 1: Introduction)

Hi everyone!

Maybe I have turned a corner after all since a counseling session brought some clarity to my current situation and I also understand my sister, Nicole’s current obsession with the music of the Britsh rock/pop band, Queen. By the way, I will call her by her nickname, Nicki, hereafter. Additionally, please bear with me since I know this introduction will be….long, but there is a lot of ground to cover. Thanks for reading this, especially if you have the kindness and patience to read it in its entirety.

For those who haven’t heard of Queen, check them out! For those who have, well, you are already acquainted with much, if not all, of their music, the personalities of the band members (especially that of the late Freddie Mercury, whose character did much to inspire this work, surprisingly!), and the Bohemian Rhapsody biopic coming out later this year.

In the session, to be clear, I talked about some family concerns, work struggles, etc., the feelings of fear and doubt I’d experienced in those and many areas of my life besides lately. In that time, and  and told my counselor, “I think I understand Nicki’s obsession with Queen now.”  For context, Nicki became obsessed with Queen around the time she first heard of the biopic, reconnecting us with our roots in classical music, country, pop, and classic rock in a new way. My initial reaction was to grumble concerning the realization that either I would become obsessed myself or I would hate Queen in response to Nicki’s obsession. (In fact, as I wrote this section of the blog, she modified “We are the Champions” and sang the modified version to her pup. Part of me wants to tell her to shush, the other is smiling and thankful for her love for Reilly since Reilly just came back from the vet and got a combination vaccine!)

That in mind, I became interested in the characters and psychology of Queen myself. After almost a year’s worth of mulling over what could be the reason behind my obsession with the character of Freddie Mercury, I hit on what most resonated with me this past week. . Nicki and I were watching the following video: Freddie Mercury – The Official Birthday Video, and I finally realized why I admired him so much and why he had a magnetic draw for many people during and after his career and death. Even with the strong language, smoking, foolishness (like calling himself a “musical prostitute- to me, there is nothing funny about human trafficking, though the jest was in sarcasm), and so on…..he was, well, authentic and transparent to a degree I don’t see in very many people nowadays. His raw candor and authenticity just…..resonated with me in a way that I finally realized that’s what I, personally, love most about him as a musician and I am sure I would have been very good friends with him if I had been born in the 1940’s or 1950’s myself.

He missed the point of living if he was not a Christian, yes, but his authenticity and transparency, with little to no fear of the days to come, were and remain inspiring. That, to me, is a hallmark of mature Christianity and what Jesus wanted for His people, after all! Proverbs 31:25, for example, says of the “wife of noble character,” “She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.” (NIV 2011) Additionally, the Message translation states that Jesus wants for us as follows:

Jesus resumed talking to the people, but now tenderly. “The Father has given me all these things to do and say. This is a unique Father-Son operation, coming out of Father and Son intimacies and knowledge. No one knows the Son the way the Father does, nor the Father the way the Son does. But I’m not keeping it to myself; I’m ready to go over it line by line with anyone willing to listen.

28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” (Matthew 11:28-30)

“Living freely and lightly” sounds wonderful, doesn’t it? Part of Mr. Mercury’s draw was, I think, that he did so as well as a non-believer could do and gives many, I imagine, pause to consider what doing so as a Christian does or would mean, whether they are living like that.

How I wish Mr. Mercury had known that, if he didn’t. I pray he did and, frankly, his example has inspired me to write about that realization on Thursday and the counseling session today. Thanks be to God that He reminds us that “nothing is too hard [or difficult] for [Him],” according to Jeremiah 32:17, no matter what legitimate translation of Scripture you read! That certainly applies to living authentically and transparently, thus using the time we have on this Earth to seek out the Lord, grow close to Him, and impact the world for His glory and our good during our lives and after we are either in Heaven or Hell.

In conclusion, with that in mind, I will publish Part Two of this series of posts- the poem itself- tomorrow, as I am still writing it mentally and working out the best way to communicate what I mean clearly. Please pray about that for me and I will pray for y’all as well! Thanks, as always, and may God Bless you now and always!

Michelle

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Happy New Year! Well, Almost….

Hi friends!

As we go into this New Year, how do you think your year went and why? What was the best part? What was the worst? (Yes, more than one of both is acceptable to write here, for those wondering.) Also, what are your resolutions for 2017? Mine are as follows, as I have the feeling some may ask:

1) Get closer to God by reading Scripture, journaling, and sharing in community with fellow believers every day.

2) Make more time for family and friends however that may be, including my furbabies.

3) Save more of my money. I have a set amount going into my savings account with every paycheck and resolve not to touch it save for emergencies or other unexpected expenses.

4) Exercise daily, even if that is just some light stretching or a one-hour walk with my mom, my sister, the pups, or some combination of the specified groupings.

5) Be more efficient at work and have no fear about seeking feedback especially.

6) If I can, do a random act of kindness for someone daily. If not, do so as much as possible this coming year.

7) Write more poetry and songs, also taking the time to repair my guitar and violin in between all of the writing!

Finally, above all, how may I pray for you and yours as we enter the New Year? God Bless!

God Bless,

Michelle

It’s Been A While

Hi everyone,

 

It’s been a while and I am sorry I have not been blogging at all recently. Work has been really busy, among other things, but getting all of said tasks within and without the context of work for now helps! I resolve, thus, to blog more regularly and hope everyone is having a Merry Christmas! So long as we don’t forget the Reason for the Season, all should be well. Truthfully, the month or so that I ended up taking off from blogging and such has changed much, but I am back now and a more mature person for it, I think.

That said, how were your Christmas Days and how will you celebrate the remaining eleven days of the season? Let me know! Thanks!

God Bless, like always, everyone,

Michelle

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A Week of Adjustment and Delays/ Une Semaine de l’Adaptation et des Pauses

Here is a recent picture of Camille with her Auntie Nicole, my twin sister! Je vous monterai une photo récente de Camille avec sa Tante Nicole, ma sœur jumelle!
Here is a recent picture of Camille with her Auntie Nicole, my twin sister!
Je vous monterai une photo récente de Camille avec sa Tante Nicole, ma sœur jumelle!

Hi everyone,

Oy vey. I know I should have been writing but, nope, I was busy as usual. Busyness with another pup is worth the lost sleep, racing mind, and such for the companionship and personal growth I have gained, though. Praise be to God!

I promise to write some tonight and on Friday. God Bless you all and I hope y’all are well!

God Bless, like always,

Michelle

Bonjour, tout le monde,

Oy vey. Je sais que j’ai promis que j’écrirais, mais, non, j’étais occupée comme d’habitude. L’occupation avec l’introduction d’une autre chiotte ‘a la maison est une bonne chose. Le sommeil perdu, les pensées anxieuses, et tout du reste de mes activités récemment. L’amitié et le développement personnel que j’avais gagne…gloire ‘a Dieu!

Je promis que j’écrirai ce soir et sur vendredi aussi. Dieu vous benisse et j’espere que vous allez bien!

Dieu vous bénisse, comme toujours,

Michelle

A Bit of Writing: Part 6: Something in French (Un Peu d’Écriture en français)

The image is from http://www.bestclipartblog.com/clipart-pics/poetry/clip-art-2.jpg. I felt like that, while the art was meant to represent the act of writing poetry, it can represent any kind of writing, really, if taken alone!

Hi everyone,

I hope you’re having a blessed weekend so far! In case you didn’t already know, my native language is English of the Standard American dialect, but I am also fluent in French of the Standard Parisian dialect and know some French of the Quebecer dialect as well. That said, I thought I’d share something I wrote in French the day before Thanksgiving:

La vie instable, c’est une leçon pour moi

‘A faire la confiance en Dieu pour ma vie et mon âme/

Il me connait le mieux, je suis qu’Il est Dieu……

(This unstable life is a lesson for me

To trust in God for my life and my soul

He knows me best, I know He is God….)

It is a work in progress, but I will try to write more in the coming week and update the poem as I am able. Out of curiosity, as well, do you any of you dabble in creative writing? If so, do you write poetry, song lyrics, music, novels, short stories, serials, et cetera? Let me know. I’d be interested in reading more about you as well as sharing my heart with you and allowing my life to be an expression of the living God. Praise Him, I get to do that because He died on the cross for me and rose again, atoning for my sins in my place and rising again to show He is Who He says He is!!!

That said, I welcome any and all comments as long as they are clean, civil, and constructive. Thanks!

God Bless,

Michelle

Post-Thanksgiving Reflection

Credit goes to Allison Jordan, who runs the Blogger webpage http://www.teachablemomentsfrommysavior.com/.

Hi everyone,

Sorry I didn’t post for the past couple of days! I hope all of you had a blessed Thanksgiving if you celebrated it and a blessed day even if you didn’t. That said, I wonder: what are you thankful for and why? How did you spend your Thanksgiving if you celebrated the holiday? My list, as posted on the forums of my university’s website, is as follows:

What are you most thankful for and why? This weekend, as with every day, is a perfect time to take stock of your blessings and thank God for every one. I’m listing ten such blessings to start us off.

1. My God and His death and resurrection. My salvation is an undeserved and (admittedly) oft-underappreciated gift. What a wonder that I am redeemed and get to know my God as my Lord and my Father!!

2. My family, including a new addition about 5 months ago: our seven-month old puppy, Reilly. For those of you who know why I can’t shush about her when I talk about Reilly, thanks for putting up with that as well! My human family, of course, has also been well more than gracious and loving to me over the years, both immediate and extended. God gifted me wonderfully with them and I am thankful they love me unconditionally, as I do love them unconditionally.

3. My friends. Be they here at UMBC, back in my hometown, my church, wherever….y’all are a blessing. I thank God for every one of you also.

4. Our country. I am blessed to be American and come from long, long lines of hardworking and dedicated people. That they sacrificed so much to come here over the years and make their futures and those of their families secure and free is a blessing I won’t soon forget or take lightly.

5. Of course, our military, law enforcement, and other public and health safety and wellness officials come to mind. To those of you who have served as soldiers, policemen, firefighters, teachers, doctors, nurses, veterinarians, civil servants, and in any other such capacity, thank you. Your service is a blessing to all who are here and I, among many others, am blessed and humbled to God for your services. Thank you.

6. My standard of living. I am blessed with more than enough food to eat, clean water to drink, clothes to wear, shelters (home and UMBC, as I live on campus during the full semesters), a wonderful job (French tutoring at the LRC for my internship), et cetera.

7. My education. I have been blessed. Education is not a blessing everyone receives – at least, not a formal education. I have had the experiences of both informal and formal education over the years, something I do not take lightly and hope never to do so. Thank you to all who have blessed me over the years. Thank You, God.

8. Safety. I live in a safe neighborhood, in a safe community, and, during the years I have been here, a relatively safe campus. That I don’t have to live in fear of losing my life, grave injury, or any other such related circumstance daily is humbling and inspiring.

9. A bright future. Life hasn’t been easy, but worth every second. God n’est pas fini avec le travail de moi yet! (God isn’t finished with me yet! Yes, I am also fluent in Standard Parisian French and am learning Quebecer French, along with my native language, Standard American English and some other dialects of English.)

10. Life- life to the fullest. God is not done with me yet!!! What an honor to know Christ as my Lord and have life in Him, now and always. I look forward to living for Him way more seriously from now on, my God and my Lord Jesus Christ….wow.

That said, there is much more for which I have to be thankful, but I think this list fairly sums up what I feel thankful for at the moment. Never take your blessings for granted, whatever sort of richesse (wealth) they are. God Bless, and Happy Thanksgiving!

God Bless,

Michelle

A Bit of Writing: Part 5: Spoken Word Poetry: Thankful

Snoopy being the chef makes me smile and reminds me I am thankful for my family, friends, and the military especially at this moment. We who live in America are blessed to have more than enough in many, many cases. I also have a wonderful mother, sister, and fur-niece ( a Maltese-Poodle puppy) named Reilly. I also have many wonderful uncles, aunts, and cousins for whom I couldn’t be more thankful at the moment. 🙂 And friends….so much blessing. Thank You, God. 🙂 You are more than enough, and I am humbled and blessed to know more blessings besides. 🙂 Wow. Thank You, God – again.

Hey everyone,

As promised, I am writing something for tonight (and, again, it is a work in progress, as sometimes inspiration comes at moments one does not expect, such as when one is tired and has no idea what to write.) Oddly enough, the inspiration came from my own previous writings, as God reminded me through a previous post that I have much to consider and thank Him for. After all, it is Thanksgiving week, so here it is as I am writing now:

I have so much, more than enough

That I consider how blessed I am; I have too much/

At least I feel I need to give much away,

But then again, I will when comes the day./

God has a plan for me, I know, for I exist,

And He makes nothing for which He has no purpose./

What is more, I am saved and redeemed

And have an incredible family, friend group, and country./

Moreover, I get more than enough daily to eat

And have clean water to drink, clothes to wear, and a place to sleep./

Thank God, I can sleep every night that passes by in peace

For He gave us men and women to protect and keep America free./

As I write, I find myself beyond words once again, indeed,

For I have more than enough to live well- certainly more than adequately./

That said, I have much to be thankful for this Thanksgiving, and every day.

May it be that I am thankful each day, I pray.

Thus, may God open all of our eyes, our ears, minds, and hearts/

To be thankful for every day we have at its beginning, whether we wake in light or dark.

Yes, I will now look on every day with new eyes

No matter what happens, when I live and the day I die/

I know my Redeemer was, is, and is to come

And for me, Him and His blessings besides are more than enough.

What are you thankful for, by the way? Let me know in the comments! God Bless!

– Michelle