Tuesday, February 24, 2015

The Short Cut to Success or Not...

Have you ever wondered what the term belly up or swimming with the fishes really mean? They both have to do with fish.

One of my hobbies is to raise aquarium fish. I buy little ones and grow them up until they are large beautiful and marketable. I love raising fish it is a Muhammad family hobby. We caught the hobby from my father he always had at least one fishing tank in our house as a child. 

For me whenever I was settled into a new space I would set up a fish tank. But in the last few family moves in my life we had to leave my fish tanks and settle for an infrequent trip to the local fish store. 

So during our search to downsize and a new home I played little attention to green water cesspool in the back yard of our new dwelling. It was a painful enough squeeze from our two story five bed room, three bath house to our three bed room, three bath house. But in the midst of the painful transition, it was there, God's special gift to me, my very first outdoor pond, His gift to me for all my troubles. 

After we settled in noticed the gift, at that time, it was cesspool a 450 gallon pool of green stagnate water. One day I thought to my self, I'm going to clean it up and turn it in to an Oasis.  Once that idea came to me I had a "project" of turning this cesspool into a water garden with fish. 

I got busy emptying out the old water and putting in clean water.  I discovered a filter in the pond,so I got the pond clean I put some of my first fish in the pond and everything was good for about three days.

Then the water turned green again and i could not see fish any more. I was frustrated and felt defeated. What could I do? I was becoming impatient. I wanted the pond to be fully functioning now.  

So a big idea came to me. If I put enough clean water in it would push out the green water. I ran to get some clean water into the pond until the green water water was clear again. 

By now I am inpatient and  frustrated so I thought to rush the process. I did not follow any of the slow, step by step procedures I needed to get some  progress toward the ole long tried and true ways of cleaning the green water. The process includes waiting until  i had everything in place like a large filter, UV lighting and the proper amount of de chlorinating water conditioner.        

My immature need to have things my way NOW,led me to push pass precaution, reason and experience. I had to get what I wanted when I wanted how I wanted it. And I got it,I got just what I wanted clean water.

I could finally see the fish. The water was clear and I could see the fish. They were beautiful hand picked and carefully selected for their rare colors and perfect form. I could finally see them and they were beautiful.  

I went to sleep that night with  with a sense of accomplishment i beat the odds. I accomplished what many wanted to do in much less time. Can you imagine how felt when I went to sleep that night. Yess!

The next morning I got up early as usually to worship God. I could hardly wait to finish my worship time and get ready for work and to feed my fish before going. Early morning, On my bed I imagined and reasoned what the pond looked like I could hardly wait to a take my fire look at my pristine master piece before I went to work. When i got to the the pond my face went from expectant joy to incomprehensible bewilderment for to my shock and chagrin I learned that hard way the origin of the term belly up. Because all my prized fish had going belly up... they were swimming with the fishes, But that is a cute euphemism for being dead.  They were not swimming at all they were like all dead things life less and not moving. All of my prized hand chosen fish we DEAD. How could this happen? To me of all people didn't God see me pick them out, didn't He guide me to the great deals and didn't he know how badly I wanted almost needed to have the fish in order to reduce my stress.     

Why, why did this happen? Yet Without voice i heard the word patience. 

Patience my son you need to learn patience. I know that you are not foolish enough to ask me for patience. So I had to allow you to set up the lesson your self. I had to allow you to learn this lesson in the minimized context. Where the cost is real but not human lost. You my son have to learn patience. 

Oh I was hot and hurt. I became mad at God but really even angrier at me. God did not make me rush the process. I did that. So i had to regroup and start again but not from the beginning of not knowing but from the New  the lessons learned. It takes time to get somethings right.  Please take it from me. Patience is a virtue because it saves us from having to suffer unnecessary lost.  

We must do our necessary duty and due diligence and research. And have the long suffering and forbearance to wait until all things come together because.. there are no short cut to success. Be encouraged for they who hold out until the end will reap a might harvest.  

What we want is not always what we need…

Monday, February 16, 2015

God Rocks & Rolls with Us

God is always with me because God rocks & rolls with Us-- Omar A. Muhammad, Th.M

The darkness and the Light are both alike to thee… Psalms 139:11
I remember the African sky was so huge to me while serving as a missionary in Kenya East Africa. The stars were innumerable and the night was the darkest dark I had ever known. Yet in fullness of the moon one could see in the dark as though it was day.

In Psalm 139 we discover that God proactively rocks and rolls with us whenever, wherever and whatever we’re going through in life. There is no place where God’s all-knowing, powerful presence is not.

In every situation God’s Love reigns supreme and is proactively setting the parameters of our exposure to danger. God takes the lead in all our adventures, and undergirds all our risky exploits. God is our safety net in every place and is our ultimate risk manager.

God exerts enormous thought energy towards us; we are forever on God’s mind even when no one else cares, God continuously thinks of us, especially when don’t realize it. Pause and think about that!

God is our ultimate security blanket forever covering our back, front and all things in between. We can be confident in every circumstance neither darkness, nor disappointment or despair can keep God from seeing us and compassionately being all that we need.
Now Meditate on this truth, regularly rehearse it in your mind, store it in the safe place of your heart and draw on it when the dark of night comes; Know as sure as there is day, darkness will come, but you are eternally sheltered.
When your soul’s eye is blinded by obstacles, fears and insecurities, let this thought comfort you, repeating:
God is with me always, because, GOD Rocks & Rolls with us.  

Trust God in the dark until the light returns-A.W. Tozer

Monday, July 14, 2014

Death vs Life after Life

Why do we cry when our love ones die? Are we in sorrow for our own loss. Maybe, we should rejoice rather than be selfishly sad. Life 2 Life!

I remember that it happened, My Father made his transition from this life to Life after life. At the time i had resentment toward God. Why oh Why did He have to take my father? Didn't He know that I we needed him. At least thats what we thought, I know intellectually that my father was in a better place with no worries of how to pay the bills and how to keep the doctors from cutting on his body.

I miss my father so much. We were friends by the time he made his transition. Who am I going to go to for wise council now? Who?

I  guess you can tell that I too am still working through the transition of my biological Father. During the past several  years have moments of clarity about when it happened. And i have waves of sorrow for his transition. I used to find my face wet with tears but not so much now. I know that there's still healing to be experienced for me.

Yet I have been enjoying the new abilities that my father has in his new role as Ancestor. He can be in multiple places without pain and disease. I have heard from my wife and siblings of his visits in dreams and in person.  Now he is able to visit more with me and my family. He comes to me at different times and be present with me. At times i sense that he is  riding in the car with me, protecting and aiding me and my family. He could not do all these things while he was alive in the body.      

How we handle our parents and loved ones transition is a highly personal thing. Some of us change our facebook profile photo during their birthday, anniversary of  transition day and Father's day. I still haven't changed mine back since Father's day. I guess i like seeing him around. Some of us visit grave sites and burn candles at altars. During this writing I realized that I have to address the issues my inability to tell you when my father made his transition i have to address it because it began to bother me. I really can't remember when it happened with out looking it up.  I knew this inability was a sign that i too needed healing in this area.

Some times I feel like one of my young friend shared with me feeling like I will never get over it (his transition), That may be true. But I also felt like  I needed a different perspective on my father's transition. As long as I though of my father as being dead. (separated from life) as I know it then. I suffered depression and deep sorrow and sadness. But when I was introduced to the concept of Life after life, then I began to have hope again.I realized that this subtle shift in my perspective gave me a whole new outlook on my father's transition. This shift in my thinking along  the visits by my father slowly shifted my relationship and understanding with death and dying.

So in my humble opinion our perspective on death and dying has a lot to do with how we handle the death of our beloved.  I believe it is all about perspective. How we see a thing in our spirit has a lot to do with how we cope, survive and or thrive after the transition of our beloved.  This  is why i ended my recent social media post concerning an observation around death with the positive thought Life unto Life.

The Positive thought of life unto Life is inviting and full of faith, hope and Love. Death, dead and dying sounds so cold and is so separating. In "Life on earth"  this subtle shift from believing in death as separation to death as a door way to Life after life is refreshing. Death which equate with separation from life, to a concept of Life after life has been good for me. In this world view, our loved ones move from one form a life into another form of Life. Life without restriction and limitations of a physical body.

With this shift in perspective concerning Death I am  now able to accept my Father promotion to the ranks of Ancestor. Now,  i look forward to my own promotion to the rank of Ancestor, when my work in earth school is over. I hope you find my word helpful at least and comforting at most. Then i hope that you will consider giving  your loved one permission to speak, visit and or guide you where allowed by God. I believe that they are waiting for us to make the first move. They do not want to be considered ghost frightening us but they want to assist our love ones in a new dimension of life with new properties. Can you embrace this? Write me and tell me what you think. 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Joy in the Flow Life

Here’s a tip for you: Live simply. Don’t get caught up in the foofaraw of the world---it is too exacting. By the time we get what we’er looking for our nerves are fried and our hearts are damaged. Let's resolve today to develop  spiritual strength from now on. Let's practice the art of living right. The natural byproduct of right living will be joy unspeakable. Remembering that when we have joy we have it all. So today let's be content. Let's augh at the world and have happiness now. Peace and Blessings.

Saturday, July 5, 2014

What is Venice YouthBuild? by Director Omar A. Muhammad, Th.M

Some of you wonder what is it that I do for a living beyond being a Pastor and Professor. Well here is my answer,  I get the honor of being the Director of the Best Youth Development program in the country Venice YouthBuild. 

Friday, July 4, 2014

Independence Day revisited 2014

This Fourth of July let us take our thoughts beyond just a day off. Let's remember that it's actually Independence Day! Whatever the revolutionaries were doing they were being "revolutionary" in thought, gaining independence from oppressive governance while nurturing interdependence on God, families and their developing new nation. Happy Independence Day!