Wednesday, November 26, 2014

"Let Him Live"

     Let me explain.

     I'm waiting.

     I'm waiting ever so patiently for a response from a kind soul.

     He said he would reply.

     And I believe that he will.

     But he hasn't yet.

     But in the meantime, my mind is playing tricks on me, and my heart is concocting crazy stories and scenarios.

     Something happens to us when we are forced to exercise patience. And let me just tell you, it's not always pretty.

     Why am I banking so much on a certain reply...

     Well therein lies my current expectation, of which I'm not quite ready to face.

     Unrequited love/like is the pits, and like you, I've had my fair share.

     It can feel a bit exhausting to believe, to hope, to trust in love just one more time.

     But that's the only way I know how to live.

     Meanwhile, I'm out here trying to follow my own advice, you know, not act thirsty, keep hope alive (even though I haven't dated anyone in over 10 years (not a misprint), and know that I'm a high value type of girl,  through and through--I mean:

     This surge of confidence has come from a variety of kindhearted people who took the time to read, "Excerpts" and expressed to me how much they believe in my own love story unfolding one day soon. Thank you. And Thank you.

     I am still humbled and in awe at how many of my guy friends and male co-workers are so protective of me. I love it. And Guys: When it happens for real for me, you'll be some of the first to know. I promise. And thank you for telling me I'm beautiful. These things don't fall on ungrateful ears. I hold them close.

     So what do I do, while I wait on his reply...


     I'm just going to let him live.

     He knows I'm here.

     I know he's there.

     Maybe it's nothing.

     Or maybe it's something.

     And maybe we both know, but are too afraid to say...

Wisdom's Knocking:

“Don't try to rush things: for the cup to run over, it must first be filled.”

 ― Antonio Machado

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

When You Know What's Coming


     In light of the events happening in our nation today, I wanted to be sensitive to this moment in history.

     To be honest, I was unaware of the lingering and monumental tension that had been rising since August of this year regarding Michael Brown. It was a story and a life that garnered a great deal of attention this past summer, but had become overshadowed by new media stories about politics, blizzards, and celebrity on-goings.

     Yes, I had been unaware, yet not fully ignorant. Something within me poised me in front of my living room TV last night around 9PM.  Upon turning my television on, I turned to a local channel. And already there was a "Special Report".

     I knew what I was in for.

     Before anything was set in stone from the man giving his detailed written speech regarding this special case, I already began to gently weep.

     "This doesn't feel right..."

     And then in the haze of the speech, as if brushed over like a comma or an incidental pause, the fate of a nation's true unrest was now given reason to manifest.

     And now there are so many opinions, but mostly broken hearts and severed spirits.

     But as heavy and thick as this all is, to my own surprise, I am not surprised that this tension has erupted and manifested in our country. Most already knew it was coming.

     As a Black woman, I may seem less of a threat to certain authority figures, and it's true, I have not experienced the type of racism my father has or my brothers have being male and being Black.

     But instead of becoming embittered and jaded by the plethora of newsfeeds out there, I'm simply forced to ask myself, what is the 'Higher Way' in all of this? What is the more Excellent Way?

     These ways don't just start with the broad overview of life and appear only at protests, but instead come to hit us at the ground level. The small choices we make on a daily, which then in turn lead to the bigger picture.

     Many people are frustrated trying to understand (or not understand) the place of injustice in all of this.

     But just picture yourself going through your own daily injustices. How do we react?

     When someone cuts us off on the highway, when someone lies about your character, when someone cheats you out of money. Frustration ensues to the say the least.

     But now imagine the stakes are a bit higher, someone hurt your mother, your father, or your child.

     Injustice is such a fiery tool and instigator.

     But yet, we as Believers are called to a more excellent way, because a more excellent way was extended to us in love, while we were boldly against or indifferent to such a love from God pursuing us.

     This excellent way doesn't leave us a decorative doormats, but instead gives us wisdom for the season (how to move forward in love, compassion, and forgiveness while being intentional for positive change) and gives ultimate jurisdiction--the final word to God.

     It may seem crazy to you, but I've personally seen the justice of God rise up on my behalf throughout my life. Therefore, the ability to believe that God is about justice and dispenses it in due time is not hard for me to believe at all.

     The end of this story is not in the unrest, but in the healing that is meant to come to this nation.

     Moreover, it's interesting to me, a friend of mine is in the movie, "Selma", which is set to open this year on Christmas Day.

     The process of this film has been years in the making, and we all didn't quite understand the many delays it encountered year after year.

     None of us really knew what the cultural climate would be when this film would finally premiere.

     And alas, here we are, needing a voice of hope, a voice of promise, a voice a triumph from heaven to once again speak identity over this unique nation with such a tumultuous and rich legacy.

     With that said, I've watched this "Selma" trailer several times:


     And it has become clear to me, this movie was never just about being a biopic about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., but it is also meant to remind us all, of who we could be, and who we are meant to be even in the midst of heartbreak, injustice, and hope deferred.      

Wisdom's Knocking:

"Do not let yourself be overcome by evil, but overcome (master) evil with good."

- Romans 12:21

Monday, November 24, 2014

Guest Post: "Chase This Light With Me"

      Navigating the terrain of singlehood in this day and age is full of twists and sharp turns. And trusting in the goodness of God and the multitude of promises spoken over our lives in the midst of such changes is difficult to say the least. 

     One thing I've realized about myself, is that I'm better equipped and prepared to step into new seasons of life by taking the time to process old and current seasons-especially through the writings in this blog.

     We've hit a theme of sorts in my last blog post, "Excerpts". And I decided that we needed to revisit this revelation that we are fearfully and wonderfully made. And no matter where you are in life, you are worthy of love.

     My good friend and sister in spirit, Bethany Mossburg, is bold and fiery, intelligent and tender. She sent one of her journal entries to me a week ago to simply share her heart. After reading, I knew her writing wasn't just meant for me, but it was meant for you too. I ever so graciously asked if I could share it with you. And thankfully she obliged...

So from Bethany's personal journal to your eyes and heart, "Chase This Light With Me":

     "Tonight, I went running with a friend. As I am currently in the throes of training for both a half and full marathon from veeeeeery little running, it's quite the task to attempt running (and this is only week two). After a very active day, I changed and walked down the street to my neighbor's home. He, a younger brother-like figure to me, was waiting, headphones in and ready to roll. We began moving at a jogger's pace, moving through cul-de-sacs and around bends, occasionally sprinting and then slowing to a walk. But I found myself struggling - my body tensing up and my lungs getting tight. And I knew why.

     Mentally, this run was going to be one of the hardest of my training, and it wasn't because it required much physically. Oh no. THIS was going to be a mental game. A deep mental game. Why?

     Because the last time I went running with someone else - and more specifically, a man - was over a year ago with my ex, "Mr. Man."

     The issue in question had little to do with Mr. Man, really, but rather carried the gravity of our last run encounter. You see, Mr. Man IS a runner. It's what he does. He does it with friends, he does it alone. Mr. THAT guy, who every other day, like clockwork, hits the pavement in the wee hours of the morning.

     Frankly...I liked that guy. The dedication was a thing of beauty to me. The commitment and, dare I say, calling to one foot in front of the other...even now, I value it. But in that run together - our first as a couple - I found a very deep principle that echoed into our relationship in so many ways:

     Mr. Man would find a way to get his distance in, even if it meant leaving me behind.

     As a less experienced runner (and at the time, someone coming off of a harsh chest cold), in my mind, he had every right to leave me. He wasn't hurtful, but he was silent about my skill (or lack thereof). He wasn't mean, but didn't encourage me either. And as a person who loves words - who allows them to give shape, reason, and meaning to her world - the silence was deafening.

     When he left me to "meet me on the other side of the lake", I thought nothing of it. But last night, it all became stingingly clear: I was waiting for Luke, my friend and brother, to leave me too, because I simply wasn't going to be enough.

     My lungs grew weaker.
     My knees started to pull "steadiness" out of the vocabulary of my step.

     My heart started aching.

     And I stopped, breathlessly, to GET IT TOGETHER enough to not seem noticeable.

     Luke, feeling the change (as all good friends do), pulled his headphones out and waited for me to speak. "I'm just tired," I said, hoping to guise my internal monologue of defeat. (Logically, tapping out before someone walks out on you feels better...right? ...Right?)

     "I know, but you can do this. Let's do it together, okay? Just...ten more minutes that you have to do!"

     Look. I'd seen the clock. I knew this man was trying to push me past myself by quite a chunk of time. And for whatever reason, I rolled with it, lungs collapsing and heart bleeding.

     "Okay. Yes. Okay," I said.


     Seven minutes of steady jogs and one or two walking breaks later, we were turning a corner when Luke said, "Let's book it all the way back to my house, and then I'll walk you home!"

     "Luke, that's a hill. Can't we start at the truck? Or the other house?"

     "Nope. Come on. No compromise. You can do this. We can do this."

     And there it was.

     The magic word.

     I started running, and crying a little, and running a little more. I could feel the rain smacking my face, with every drop of resistance the weight of a semi truck against my psyche. But I could see him beside me. I could see his arms moving with mine, his steps paced with mine. And then came the final sprint home.

     "I can't!" I shouted loudly into the street.

     "You CAN! We CAN!" He shouted back.

     And so, like giving birth to a new life, I screamed and pushed myself hard, thudding my tennis shoes onto the pavement and praying for the end to come soon.

     And suddenly. We were home.


     As promised, Luke walked me to my house.

     I explained a little of what had happened for me, and he explained that it was his pleasure to be there for me like that - to help in the redefinition of that moment.

     I went into my home, and started the shower water. Surely, that was enough for one night.

     But the Lord is rarely interested in what we deem "enough to function" and far more interested in the fullness of our hearts being restored and recovered.

     In the shower, I cried. And couldn't stop crying. The depth of the uprooted wound had left me feeling a need for gentleness and kindness to come like a salve over my heart and wash through the cracked spaces.

     The Lord started to speak. "Bethany, my love, it's time to let go of the man who left you behind for his own gain, and it's time to let go of the man who left you behind just to prove himself to you," which, that second one is a more recent love-gone-awry tale of insecurity marring a relationship to fractures and fragments. I sobbed.

     "What do I do, then. How do I do that?"

     "When you get out of the shower, take your oil, cream, and perfume. Put them on."

     Now, I have a bottle of oil, a perfumed body lotion, and an actual perfume that are all meant to be worn together. They each smell of different things, but are meant to marry into one. They're expensive. I wear them only on special occasions. And I am running out.

     "But I'll be showering in the morning for work..."

     "I know that. But you're worth it, Bethany. Let Me reanoint you here. Let me cover you with salve and heal your heart. Let yourself be beautiful for no one but you and Me. YOU are the special occasion now."

     And so I did. I sat on my floor, obediently, and spent my costly perfume on myself. I watched the bottle empty down as I went, hearing His heart, and feeling my value.

     Last night reminded me of something: my value doesn't come from me. My worth is not determined by me, or a standard that I uphold for myself. My value doesn't come because Maya Angelou said it or because Ray Charles sang "You Are So Beautiful". My value comes from my heavenly Father.

     I'm worth keeping step with - not being left behind.

     I'm worth confident, self-assured love - not being abandoned to make a point & live in fear.

     I'm worth the most expensive perfumes - because they aren't wasted on me.

     But not because I said so. Because He said so.

     Because it WAS so before the foundations of the earth.

     And because I trust Him, I believe Him."


     So Beloved, what will you believe today? 

     Often walking in the light involves a pursuit and an exchange of sorts. My interpretation of Bethany's post title, "Chase This Light With Me" took on a double entendre form for me:

     The burdens of our own insecurities become heavy, but when we look up at God's heart for us--Christ's love extended towards us ("The Light"), He makes our load "Light". It's not simply a hope, but a promise.

     We, in and of ourselves suffer great limitation. And I personally can attest to those many moments in life where my own strength and intellect ended, yet where Love's strength arose in me and around me.

     And all of this, as a result of chasing and pursing the "Light", the truth of who we are in God. And embracing the enormity of who He is and what He has already done for us.

     On top of that, believing and knowing, that as you chase the Light, the Light has already been chasing you...

Wisdom's Knocking:

  Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.]

Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me, for I am gentle (meek) and humble (lowly) in heart, and you will find rest (relief and ease and refreshment and recreation and blessed quiet) for your souls.

 For My yoke is wholesome (useful,good—not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne.

--Matthew 11:28-30 Amplified Bible (AMP)

Thursday, November 20, 2014



     I haven't written to you in a while. And I miss you.

     My heart is full and tired at the same time.

     These past few weeks have been something else.

     Experiencing the highs of the highs and the lows of the lows---and let's not forget about the painful in-betweens.

     I'm in a season of my life where I'm stepping out more, taking more risks when it comes to ministry, my career, and of course love.

     For those that don't know, I recently took a huge leap by appearing on a faith-based dating reality show. I can't share much more than that at present, but let's just say, I faced some personal fears of mine (being seen, being vulnerable, and truly accepting myself as high value and worthy) in a greater way and in exchange gained a new sense of courage in the process of it all.

     After my appearance on the show, I personally felt invincible in the realm of love.

     I hope to always believe.

     I hope to always believe that there is more of love to be discovered, that we have not exhausted the well of love that has been shown to us.

     After this great high of feeling invincible and brave, I stepped out in the area of "almost" romance hoping my vulnerability and risk would pay off. He was kind and keen. And I was resting in child-like faith.  We were both strangers to one another, but the potential all seemed there. And then it wasn't.

     It's funny how something is almost a thing, and then just like that, its not. It's feels like a violent earthquake of sorts, where things are shaken firmly and aggressively back into some other place and position. Like a child being yanked by the hand to walk in a new direction.

     And there I was again. In a place of familiar pain and disappointment.

     But the pain wasn't crippling this time, it just hurt.

     In the past, my identity was so wrapped up in a handsome man finding me attractive or choosing me. Yet time and time again, I was never chosen. And it all felt like a cruel joke to me.

     Until God's love began to unveil a lie that I had been believing about myself for years: That I wasn't and never would be enough or worthy for someone I considered out of my league. Nor would such a person want to invest in my life and my love. 

     But God was truly trying to tell me over and over again, that I am enough.

     Even when I'm rejected by people or by men that I think I adore from afar. I am still enough.

     I am still worthy.

     And with that said, I'm realizing more and more that I'm worth investing in. Just as you are worth investing in.

     Often, we as females, are so quick to give our hearts and our nurturing capabilities away to the first guy who says hello. But has he invested in you? Has he invested in the things that are important to your life at all. As much as you know about his friends, his likes, his favorite movies, his favorite websites--has he once invested his interest in yours?

     All that to say, I gave my heart away a little too soon in the Land of Potential--in the Land of Hoping when it came to this particular guy. And now I don't know how to feel about the situation, but what I do know, is that I was not invested in, which is a hint and indicator at best of the trajectory of such a friendship and relationship...


     And then we have the unexpected revelation that I received last week in the middle of my car ride back from work.

     The "Accuser" doesn't fight fair. 

     I know this sounds like basic Christianity 101 (Satan is referred to as the "Accuser of the brethren" in Revelation--That's a part of his M.O.)  but let me break down one key point that hit my spirit with such force.

     I, like you, have been fighting the voice of the "Accuser", almost my entire life. Especially regarding this issue of not feeling worthy or being enough.

     My desire for approval from men and my habit of always permission (often out of fear and not always out of honor) becomes fuel for the voice of the Accuser to be amplified in my life.

     And it hit me in the car last week, that I've been trying to fight accusations with accusations.

     Meaning, I was trying to fight like the Accuser fights, using his own ammo: Fighting anger with anger (which only empowered him more). But at the time of such heated internal debates (or visibly outward circumstantial disappointments) , it was always a mystery why I left such cage fights with him exhausted, scared, and defeated.

     But God reminded me of His heart--of His heart of love and how He always wins.

     This may not hit your spirit in the same way it hit mine, but I was Amazed and a little Thunderstruck that the way to defeat the voice of the Accuser was not in the fighting back, but in the being loved and knowing you are loved. 

     That in essence IS the fighting. Being loved. And allowing yourself to be loved. You know why? Because you are worthy. Yes. We went back to that theme again. But I know you see the connection.

     Furthermore, when love empowers you to fight, there is less striving and much more ground taken in terms of victory for our own heart's sake.

     Subsequently,  I was also reminded this past week, that Gentleness is actually a Fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22).

     But really though. That gift right thurrr is a weapon. (Proverbs 15:1...)


     On Tuesday, one of my best friends moved to another country. And I then I spent 40 minutes crying my eyes out like a crazy person as I drove on the 101 Freeway.

     One chapter ends, yet the novel still continues.

     She and I have chased dreams together, seen dreams realized, seen utter defeat, the valley of the shadow of the death. And we have been in the fight together for over 10 years. I have shared some of the most transformative moments of my life with her: film school, producing documentaries together, traveling the globe, writing scripts together, weeping together, laughing together, praying together, living and being family.

     This move marks something profound for both of us.

     It is a good thing. Trust me.

     But there are still tears.


     So as you can see, I've been fighting and paddling and fighting and paddling--making a bit of headway, albeit slow.

     But tonight, it became apparent-- Just rest Patrice. Rest.

     Not just in the movement of my own day to day life, but in the tender vulnerable moments before bed and when I wake up. And when I'm in a crowd of people and feel the enormity of my own humanity. Rest.

     Love calls for us to be in that place.

     We are so incredibly loved already. Right where we sit and stand.

     We are but dust, but still a little higher than the angels.

     Everything is changing.

     And you'll be glad it is.

     There may be pain in the night, but joy comes in the morning.

     For me these past few weeks, I've had butterflies in my stomach, and hot tears streaming down my face.

     But in the midst of it all, I still believe.

     I believe that God is good, God is faithful, and God is kind. And I know He calls us worthy to receive the everyday beauty of who He is.

Wisdom's Knocking:

His love changes everything.