In the Western world, not only have men dominated the playing fields, but athletic qualities such as aggression, competitiveness, strength, speed, power, and teamwork have always been associated with masculinity.
Consequently, the controversy surrounding female athleticism introduced fundamental questions about what exactly was considered manhood and womanhood.
Would women engaging in a traditional male activity become more manlike?
Would they still aspire to become mothers, be considered attractive, find men attractive and desire feminine attire?
These are just some of the questions female athletes have had to challenge and endure and continue to do so over the years.
Nineteenth-century medical science characterized women as the physiologically inferior sex, weakened and ruled by their reproductive systems. Formally educated doctors at the time, eager to secure their professional status took a special interest in women’s health problems and sought to emphasis women’s “poor health”. (Lol!) Special negative interest was placed on women’s chronic fatigue, pain and illness, mood swings, and menstrual irregularities. Experts at the time even theorized that the cyclical fluctuations of female physiology caused physical, emotional, and moral vulnerability and debilitation. Imagine that! Even critics at the time believed that sports posed dangers to the female reproductive system and a loss of sexual control or perhaps even a loss of sexual desires altogether.
The above sentence I had to read a few times and even check the validity of the book, “Coming on Strong, Gender and Sexuality in Twentieth-Century Women’s Sport by Susan K. Cahn” where I received the information. Lol!
Susan K. Cahn has done a serious study of women in sports and at the time when the above-mentioned book was published in 1994 she was an assistant professor of history at the State University of New York at Buffalo.
I felt she effectively captured the challenge women faced on all fronts.
From the women who were being accused of being poor imitations of male athletes to the Athletic Directors, Coaches and Physical Education Teachers who were known for imposing constraints through dress codes, off-field behavior codes, and “girls’ rules” that limited physical contact and reduced the size of playing courts and fields.
Cahn even touched on the perceptions of sexual danger for women in sports and that such perceptions were fueled by widespread societal fears about female passions running “red hot” and becoming unleashed and out of control. (Lol!)
According to the library of Congress, during the 1928 and 1932 Olympics, critics objected to women’s high-level strenuous competition as physically and mentally injurious, they even attempted to eliminate track and field from regional and national events.
However, Betty Robinson, a Chicagoan who in 1928 won the first-ever Olympic women’s 100-meter sprint, thankfully ignored them.
By the 1930s, it was the “masculine” quality of track and field rather than its effect on women’s health that drew the most criticism.
Thank the Lord- Now I actual feel during my research that the criticism might actually have some merit because the initial objections were just too hilarious!
Further in my studies I learnt that African American interest in track and field and the growing tolerance towards women’s athletics set the stage for the emergence of black women’s track at the precise moment when the majority of white women and the white public rejected the sport as undignified for women.
African American women compiled their record of excellence while suffering the constraints of racial and gender discrimination.
However, despite these obstacles black women’s track and field survived and even thrived.
I’m very proud of my home country Jamaica and the wealth of talented athletes they have produced over the years.
Jamaican sprinter Elaine Thompson is one of the fastest women in the world and at 25, I believe we still haven’t seen anything yet!
I strongly believe she’s a force to be reckon with and truly epitomizes what our Caribbean young ladies can aspire to become like one day.
Many other beautiful and gifted athletes like Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Veronica Campbell-Brown, just to name a few, are actively forging ahead and creating wonderful examples of what an athletic woman can become, even though they are continuous scrutinized.
However, they must endure and show the world the enormous strength it takes to be a leader in the realm of sports that was once considered “just for men”
The 100m specialist Shelly-Ann first caught the world’s attention at the 2008 Olympic Games when she became the first Caribbean woman to win the 100m gold at the Olympics. At the time she was only 21 years old. Imagine that young ladies!
In 2012, she then successfully defended her 100m title, becoming the third woman to win two consecutive 100m gold medals again at the Olympics.
Then, after winning bronze at the 2016 Summer Olympics, she then became the first woman in history to win 100m medals at three consecutive Olympic Games.
She has also won seven World Championships gold medals across the 100m, 200m and 4X100 relay events.
Regardless of the countless distractions, fears, and setbacks in life, if you are a fighter and ready for warfare, you are resilient and will tenaciously focus on the vision or goal that you have created for your life.
I highly recommend writing out your vision or dream and cementing
it with a mission statement so that it becomes clear and compelling.
Next, you may want to review it occasionally and record the different
lifestyle changes that have taken place and make necessary adjustments as unforeseen
events inevitably might occur and reshape the basic logistics of your vision.
Reviewing and adjusting solidifies your original foundation
and helps you to ascertain whether or not you are thriving within your environment.
Speaking of thriving and surviving- Did you know that
fighter pilots in World War II had different methods and tactics of survival
they developed in order to remain steadfast through every mission they had to fly?
In order to get through the numerous moments of being tired,
stressed and on the verge of panic at the sight of each new enemy plane, the
fighter pilots would leave behind or carry sentimental objects that reminded
them of loved-ones or they would make promises to their loved ones that they
knew they had to keep.
For example, a letter that remained unread or a promise of
marriage to someone left behind.
The following movie Unbroken: Path to Redemption, which was directed by Angelina Jolie is a magnificently portrayed example of survival and the strength of the human spirit in spite of numerous obstacles.
Also, as the fighter pilots in World War II story unfolded,
I learnt that not only did they leave something or someone behind to look
forward to, they may also leave something to complete.
That way their minds could focus on that thought and arouse
or stimulate the necessary motivation to face one more “dogfight”, or survive another
loss of a dear friend on the battle field and get through one more mission.
Just like in the movie Unbroken: Path to Redemption, the
story I read illustrated where the real battle begins and ends.
The fighter pilots knew that while in battle the temptation
to give in to physical wariness and breakdown under various psychological
traumas was extremely high.
The real war wasn’t on the battle field- the real war was in the mind.
Even though we celebrate our veteran’s heroism, the ugly
truth is many of them both locally and around the world have been exposed to numerous
Many Research Experts have agreed that most of the times,
PTSD (Posttraumatic Stress Disorder) develops shortly after exposure to the
traumatic event. Sometimes, it may even be delayed months or even years later
and may be triggered by something that is reminiscent of the original stressor.
However, please note that not everyone who is exposed to a
terrible event goes on to develop PTSD. It really depends on the individual and
the nature of the event.
Some people, particularly those with preexisting emotional or personality problems, are naturally more susceptible to being scarred by traumatic events.
Posttraumatic Stress Disorder was born originally on the
battlefield and was known by a number of names such as “shell Shock”, “combat
fatigue”, or “war neurosis”.
However, according to Allen Frances M.D. and Michael B.
First M.D., horrifying experiences are by no means restricted to only warfare.
Community surveys that were done uncovered the fact that the
majority of us have been exposed at some point in our lives to an event that
involved actual or threatened death or serious injury.
For example, car accidents, natural disasters, torture,
concentration camps, rape, sexual or physical abuse and other crimes.
See the two following articles which illustrates behaviors
Smooth Criminal/Love the way you Lie: Traumatic Bonding
Let’s also not forget other forms of psychological
manipulations such as gaslighting.
Gaslighting is a form of psychological manipulation that
seeks to sow seeds of doubt in a targeted individual or in members of a
targeted group, making them question their own memory, perception, and sanity.
In order to gain more power, the person or entity makes the
victim question their reality. It works much better than you may think. Anyone
is susceptible to gaslighting, and it is a common technique of abusers,
dictators, narcissists, and cult leaders.
It is done slowly, so the victim doesn’t realize how much
they’ve been brainwashed. For example, in the movie Gaslight (1944), a man
manipulates his wife to the point where she thinks she is losing her mind.
A gas lighter will tell you that you’d be a worthy person if
only you didn’t have such a long list of negative traits. They attack the very foundation
of your being.
When dealing with a person or entity that gaslights, look at
what they are doing rather than what they are saying. What they are
saying means nothing; it is just talk. What they are doing is the issue.
Occasionally, they may throw in positive reinforcement to
This person or entity that is cutting you down, telling you
that you don’t have value, is now praising you for something you did. This adds
an additional sense of uneasiness. You think, “Well maybe they aren’t so
bad.” Yes, they are!
This is a calculated attempt to keep you off-kilter—and
again, to question your reality.
Also look at what you were praised for; it is probably
something that served the gas lighter.
Gas lighters know that confusion weakens people.
Gas lighters know that people like having a sense of
stability and normalcy. Their goal is to uproot this and make you constantly
question everything. And humans’ natural tendency is to look to the person or
entity that will help you feel more stable—and that happens to be the gas
They often project their opinions on their “prey”.
Many times, they are drug users or cheaters, yet they are
constantly accusing you the victim of that very behavior. This is done so often
that you start trying to defend yourself, and are distracted from the gas
lighter’s own behavior.
Unfortunately, they may even try to align people against
Gas lighters are masters at manipulating and finding the people they know will stand by them no matter what—and they use these people against you.
They will make comments such as, “This person knows that you’re not right in your head or have a tendency to ‘go crazy’”.
Or “you’re always gazing off in space,” or “This person knows you’re useless too” or “This person does not trust you either” or “This person also does not believe you are capable of holding down a regular job consistently”.
Keep in mind it does not mean that these people actually
said these things. A gas lighter is a constant liar.
When the gas lighter uses this tactic, it makes you feel
like you don’t know who to trust or turn to—and that leads you right back to
the gas lighter.
And that’s exactly what they want: Isolation gives them more
Once again, they love telling you or others that you are
crazy. This is one of the most effective tools of the gas lighter, because it’s
The gas lighter knows that if they question your sanity, people will not believe you when you tell them that the gas lighter is abusive or out-of-control. It’s a master technique.
The more you are aware of these techniques, the
quicker you can identify them and avoid falling into a gas lighter’s
Additionally, my bible tells me the following in Ephesians 6:12 (New International Version) NIV
For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
According to Commonweal Magazine, The New Testament’s
extensive language concerning malevolent spiritual forces is never humorous.
Apparently, the terminology varies and some texts speak of
the Devil or Satan, while others speak of demons or unclean spirits which
represent powers and principalities.
There are also such descriptions as the Ruler of the Power of the Air and the Dragon or Ancient Serpent.
Regardless of the description, when taken together, these
terms point to a conviction, broadly shared by the writers of the New
Testament, that a cosmic power, lesser than God but greater than humans alone,
inhabited the world and worked against human good in a manner that was far from
funny or creatively orchestrated like in the movies.
Satan hates ALL humans and he does not discriminate!
At the personal level, the bible says that Paul, an Apostle
of Christ Jesus by the will of God, speaks of Satan as a constant threat, one
lying outside the community yet capable of causing damage within.
More cosmically he envisions “powers and principalities” which, though conquered by the death and exaltation of Christ, remain capable of opposing believers, who must continue to do battle “against the cosmic powers of this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places” (Once again, as I mentioned from Ephesians 6:12).
Similarly, Peter pictures the Devil as a ravening beast out
to destroy unwary believers, and counsels them to “be sober and watch, because
your adversary the Devil goes about like a roaring lion seeking whom he may
devour” (1 Peter 5:8).
In the bible, Luke imagines Satan as the arrogant ruler of a
kingdom counter to God’s own, capable of granting great power to those willing
to worship him, and commanding a vast army of demonic spirits.
John declares that “the whole world lies under the power of the evil one.”
Praise for Spiritual Blessings in Christ
Ephesians Chapter 1, vs 3:13, New International Version (NIV)
3 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.
4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love
5 he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.
7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us. With all wisdom and understanding,
9 he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ,
10 to be put into effect when the times reach their fulfillment—to bring unity to all things in heaven and on earth under Christ.
11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, 12 in order that we, who were the first to put our hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory.
13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit,
14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.
The Holy Bible
Finally, the Book of Revelation imagines the world caught in a cosmic battle between Christ and Satan, the great beast waging ceaseless war against the saints in unholy alliance with the corrupt power of an empire that buys and sells human lives and brands them with its mark.
The Thousand Years
20 And I saw an angel coming down out of heaven, having the key to the Abyss and holding in his hand a great chain. 2 He seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil, or Satan, and bound him for a thousand years.
3 He threw him into the Abyss, and locked and sealed it over him, to keep him from deceiving the nations anymore until the thousand years were ended. After that, he must be set free for a short time.
4 I saw thrones on which were seated
those who had been given authority to judge. And I saw the souls of those who
had been beheaded because of their testimony about Jesus and because of the
word of God.
They had not worshiped the beast or its image and had not received its mark on their foreheads or their hands. They came to life and reigned with Christ a thousand years.
5 (The rest of the dead did not come to life until the thousand years were ended.) This is the first resurrection.
6 Blessed and holy are those who share in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with him for a thousand years.
The Judgment of Satan
7 When the thousand years are over, Satan will be released from his prison
8 and will go out to deceive the nations in the four corners of the earth—Gog and Magog—and to gather them for battle. In number they are like the sand on the seashore.
9 They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God’s people, the city he loves. But fire came down from heaven and devoured them.
10 And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever.
Now, many of the previous paragraphs and links illustrated
negative behaviors and their affects, however, how many of you know that God’s
correction is different.
With God’s correction-conviction is concerning the attitude
or deed of the person and then there is a call for repentance.
Next, there should be an assurance of forgiveness and restoration to remind the individual of their value as God’s child.
7 Deadly Sins
People have always been known to be immoral, shiftless, and
self-gratifying. For ages, humankind struggled to find a conceptual system to understand
their spiritual shortcomings.
manifested in the individual who spurns love and opts instead for fury. It is
also known as Anger.
Speaking of wrath; from a biblical perspective, the New Testament also has references regarding the Great Tribulation and the wrath of God.
The Wrath of God and the three angels (Revelation 14:6-13)
6 Then I saw another angel flying in midair, and he had the eternal gospel to proclaim to those who live on the earth- to every nation, tribe, language and people.
7 He said in a loud voice, “Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgement has come. Worship him who made the heavens, the earth, the sea and the springs of water.”
8 A second angel followed and said, “Fallen! Fallen is Babylon the Great, which made all the nations drink the maddening wine of her adulteries.”
9 A third angel followed them and said in a loud voice: “If anyone worships the beast and its image and receives its mark on their forehead or on their hand,
10 they too, will drink the wine of God’s fury, which has been poured full strength into the cup of his wrath. They will be tormented with burning sulfur in the presence of the holy angels and of the Lamb.
11 And the smoke of their torment will rise for ever and ever. There will be no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and its image, or for anyone who receives the mark of its name.”
12 This calls for patient endurance on the part of the people of God who keep his commands and remain faithful to Jesus.
13 Then I heard a voice from heaven say, “Write this: Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord from now on.”
“Yes,” says the Spirit, “they will rest from their labor, for their deeds will follow them.”
Pride is excessive belief in one’s own abilities, that interferes with the individual’s recognition of the grace of God. It has been called the sin from which all others arise.
Pride is also known as Vanity.
Babylon The Great, The Mother of Prostitutes and of the Abominations of the Earth
17 One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls came and said to me, “Come, I will show you the punishment of the great prostitute, who sits by many waters. 2 With her the kings of the earth committed adultery, and the inhabitants of the earth were intoxicated with the wine of her adulteries.”
3 Then the angel carried me away in the Spirit into a wilderness. There I saw a woman sitting on a scarlet beast that was covered with blasphemous names and had seven heads and ten horns. 4 The woman was dressed in purple and scarlet, and was glittering with gold, precious stones and pearls. She held a golden cup in her hand, filled with abominable things and the filth of her adulteries. 5 The name written on her forehead was a mystery:
BABYLON THE GREAT THE MOTHER OF PROSTITUTES AND OF THE ABOMINATIONS OF THE EARTH.
6 I saw that the woman was drunk with the blood of God’s holy people, the blood of those who bore testimony to Jesus.
When I saw her; I was greatly astonished. 7 Then the angel said to me: “Why are you astonished? I will explain to you the mystery of the woman and of the beast she rides, which has the seven heads and ten horns.
8 The beast, which you saw, once was, now is not, and yet will come up out of the Abyss and go to its destruction. The inhabitants of the earth whose names have not been written in the book of life from the creation of the world will be astonished when they see the beast, because it once was, now is not, and yet will come.
9 “This calls for a mind with wisdom. The seven heads are seven hills on which the woman sits. 10 They are also seven kings. Five have fallen, one is, the other has not yet come; but when he does come, he must remain for only a little while. 11 The beast who once was, and now is not, is an eighth king. He belongs to the seven and is going to his destruction.
12 “The ten horns you saw are ten kings who have not yet received a kingdom, but who for one hour will receive authority as kings along with the beast. 13 They have one purpose and will give their power and authority to the beast. 14 They will wage war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will triumph over them because he is Lord of lords and King of kings—and with him will be his called, chosen and faithful followers.”
15 Then the angel said to me, “The waters you saw, where the prostitute sits, are peoples, multitudes, nations and languages. 16 The beast and the ten horns you saw will hate the prostitute. They will bring her to ruin and leave her naked; they will eat her flesh and burn her with fire.
17 For God has put it into their hearts to accomplish his purpose by agreeing to hand over to the beast their royal authority, until God’s words are fulfilled. 18 The woman you saw is the great city that rules over the kings of the earth.”
Greed is the desire for material wealth or gain, ignoring the realm of the spiritual. It is also called Avarice or Covetousness.
Lust is an inordinate craving for the pleasures of the body.
Envy is the desire for others’ traits, status, abilities, or situation.
Submit Yourselves to God (James 4:1-10 NIV)
4 What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you? 2 You desire but do not have, so you kill. You covet but you cannot get what you want, so you quarrel and fight. You do not have because you do not ask God. 3 When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.
4 You adulterous people, don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think Scripture says without reason that he jealously longs for the spirit he has caused to dwell in us[b? 6 But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says:
“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.”
7 Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Come near to God and he will come near to you. Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9 Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.
Gluttony is an inordinate desire to consume more than that which one requires.
Like other bears, pandas spend most of the day eating and sleeping. Bamboo is the most important plant for giant pandas. They spend at least 12 hours each day eating bamboo. Because bamboo is so low in nutrients, pandas eat a lot of it daily.
Sloth is the avoidance of physical or spiritual work.
The final sin as mentioned above was sloth and is said to be the avoidance of physical or spiritual work.
However, how many of you know that once you have been called, it is then critical that you share the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ?
According to Tim LaHaye and Thomas Ice, coauthors of Left Behind and Charting the End Times, it is difficult for non-Christians to understand that a God of love would allow the tribulation.
But I agree with them that God really wants to draw as many people as possible to Him before Jesus returns to set up His Millennial Kingdom, and He will use the Tribulation to get their attention.
They believe that in grace and love, He will give more supernatural signs and leadings of His Spirit than at any time in the history of the world, proving that he is “not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9).
In the book of Revelation, Chapter 3, the Bible says to the angel of the church in Sardis:
1 These are the words of him who holds the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. I know your deeds; you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead.
2 Wake up! Strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have found your deeds unfinished in the sight of my God.
3 Remember, therefore, what you have received and heard; hold it fast, and repent. But if you do not wake up, I will come like a thief, and you will not know at what time I will come to you.
Then to the angel of the church in Philadelphia:
7 These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open.
8 I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.
9 I will make those who are the synagogue of Satan, who claim to be Jews though they are not, but are liars- I will make them come and fall down at your feet and acknowledge that I have loved you.
10 Since you have kept my command to endure patiently, I will also keep you from the hour of trial that is going to come on the whole world to test the inhabitants of the earth.
11 I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown. (Revelation 3:11)
Now in reverse, the two witnesses (Revelation 11:3)
3 And I will appoint my two witnesses, and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, clothed in sackcloth.” (Revelation 11:3)
Mr. Tim LaHaye and Thomas Ice states that in Revelation, we find the seven years divided into two periods of 1260 days, or 42 months, or three-and-one-half years, or “time and times and half a time” (Revelation 11:2-3;12:6,7,14; 13:5).
Every one of those time spans totals up to seven years. The first half, or first 42 months, is the Tribulation, while the last half is called by our Lord “The Great Tribulation.”
The Day of the Lord (1 Thessalonians 5:1-24)
5 Now, brothers and sisters, about times and dates we do not need to write to you,
2 for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.
3 While people are saying, “Peace and safety,” destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.
4 But you, brothers and sisters, are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief.
5 You are all children of the light and children of the day. We do not belong to the night or to the darkness.
6 So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be awake and sober.
7 For those who sleep, sleep at night, and those who get drunk, get drunk at night.
8 But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.
9 For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.
10 He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him.
11 Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.
12 Now we ask you, brothers and sisters, to acknowledge those who work hard among you, who care for you in the Lord and who admonish you.
13 Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work. Live in peace with each other.
14 And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone.
15 Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.
16 Rejoice always,
17 pray continually,
18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
19 Do not quench the Spirit.
20 Do not treat prophecies with contempt
21 but test them all; hold on to what is good,
22 reject every kind of evil.
23 May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
24 The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.
Nobody really wakes up and say, “Today I am going to save the world!”
Are you ready to be the next Hero? The Bell Curve around the World
Many of us are just too tired, stressed-out and ridiculously annoyed with various affairs in our life to add additional duties to our ever-expanding list of community goodwill. Lol!
Don’t get me wrong, I like to acknowledge people in our community who clearly are deserving of recognition, but I know many of them were not doing it for recognition in the first place, they were really just being who they inherently were created to be.
Many times, in life we might have committed to do something in our community and our commitment started with a “bang” but along the way we encountered obstacles like discouragement, rejection, suffered poor self-esteem, sickness, financial struggles or even spiritual warfare.
Renewal of Ezekiel’s Call as Watchman (Ezekiel Chapter 33: 1-20)
33 The word of the Lord came to me:
2 “Son of man, speak to your people and say to them: ‘When I bring the sword against a land, and the people of the land choose one of their men and make him their watchman,
3 and he sees the sword coming against the land and blows the trumpet to warn the people,
4 then if anyone hears the trumpet but does not heed the warning and the sword comes and takes their life, their blood will be on their own head.
5 Since they heard the sound of the trumpet but did not heed the warning, their blood will be on their own head. If they had heeded the warning, they would have saved themselves.
6 But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet to warn the people and the sword comes and takes someone’s life, that person’s life will be taken because of their sin, but I will hold the watchman accountable for their blood.’
7 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me.
8 When I say to the wicked, ‘You wicked person, you will surely die,’ and you do not speak out to dissuade them from their ways, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood.
9 But if you do warn the wicked person to turn from their ways and they do not do so, they will die for their sin, though you yourself will be saved.
10 “Son of man, say to the Israelites, ‘This is what you are saying: “Our offenses and sins weigh us down, and we are wasting away because of them. How then can we live?”
11 Say to them, ‘As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live. Turn! Turn from your evil ways! Why will you die, people of Israel?’
12 “Therefore, son of man, say to your people, ‘If someone who is righteous disobeys, that person’s former righteousness will count for nothing. And if someone who is wicked repents, that person’s former wickedness will not bring condemnation. The righteous person who sins will not be allowed to live even though they were formerly righteous.’
13 If I tell a righteous person that they will surely live, but then they trust in their righteousness and do evil, none of the righteous things that person has done will be remembered; they will die for the evil they have done.
14 And if I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ but they then turn away from their sin and do what is just and right—
15 if they give back what they took in pledge for a loan, return what they have stolen, follow the decrees that give life, and do no evil—that person will surely live; they will not die.
16 None of the sins that person has committed will be remembered against them. They have done what is just and right; they will surely live.
17 “Yet your people say, ‘The way of the Lord is not just.’ But it is their way that is not just.
18 If a righteous person turns from their righteousness and does evil, they will die for it.
19 And if a wicked person turns away from their wickedness and does what is just and right, they will live by doing so.
20 Yet you Israelites say, ‘The way of the Lord is not just.’ But I will judge each of you according to your own ways.”
The Holy Bible
But how many of you know that with the Holy Spirit you can make it?
I have learnt that unclean spirits, without exception and regardless of their names or where they act, are all agents of death.
But how can you distinguish between the Spirit of God and the spirits of the devil if many of them talk about love, light and good works?
Here is one clue:
• Demonic spirits always cause problems that deprive people of any joy, especially on special occasions. In fact, they never allow their followers to have peace. The Holy Spirit, however, is peace. He rejoices when we are happy. It is written,
“For the joy of the Lord is my strength” Nehemiah 8:10
The Holy Bible
We must learn how to bind the strong man in our lives.
Jesus gave us his authority over the devil and his evil
cohorts, yet I have learnt that we must be motivated to use it if we want to
Let us consider what Jesus taught his followers:
In the book of Matthew Chapter 16:19, it says, “I will give
you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound
in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”
To bind evil spirits means to restrain them by addressing
them directly and forbidding them to continue their destructive activity.
Through the power of the Holy Spirit, our words will weaken
or remove the person from the enemy’s bondage and in prayer we then ask the
Holy Spirit to minister to his or her needs.
Our prayers should then be directed to God, and our warfare
at the enemy.
According to the authors, Quin Sherrer & Ruthanne
Garlock of A Woman’s Guide to Spiritual Warfare, this tactic of binding
evil spirits is especially effective when praying in agreement with a prayer
The following is a hypothetical story to illustrate how we
can become more effective in our everyday life:
Cadia is a spiritual warrior who’s learned to use this
important tactic. One day she went to visit her twenty-year-old daughter Lisa, who
had gone away to college. Not finding her at her designated residence, she went
Appalled at the mess she found, she began to clean the
apartment-straightening, dusting, sweeping, and scrubbing. She even cooked a
meal, then washed all the dirty clothes lying around.
She knew her daughter was still adjusting to college life,
but she was shock that her normally tidy and preppy daughter would have allowed
her apartment to be reduced to such a deplorable state.
While putting things in order, Cadia found a bundle of torn
and bloody undergarments amongst a small bag of “unknown substance” beside a
used syringe and a small hand gun. It had one bullet in it.
At that moment, Cadia knew her daughter’s intent was to
shoot herself and based on the evidence, the reason was obvious.
As a mother in the natural, she was devastated, but as a
prayer warrior in the spirit, she was furious!
At that very moment, Cadia began to do serious spiritual
battle for her daughter’s life.
“Thank you, Lord, for giving us authority to use your name to set captives free. I plead the blood of Jesus over Lisa, and ask you to protect her life.
I come against the strong man of rejection operating against my daughter, and bind your power over my daughter in Jesus’ name.
I come against the spirit of suicide, you will not have my daughter.
I come against the spirit of deception and psychosis, you will not have my daughter.
I bind all spirits of rejection, madness, hate, anger, murder, and suicide, in Jesus’ name.
I command the spirits that are binding and controlling her to release her, in Jesus’ name.
Lord, let your peace permeate her apartment. Show Lisa how much you love her and desire to set her free from the bondage of the enemy.
Thank you, Lord, for protecting her life and drawing her into fellowship with you in Jesus’ name.
Cadia then began singing and filling the apartment with praises to the Lord as she continued to cook and clean.
Before leaving that day, she left a note:
“Lisa- I did this today because I love you. No strings attached. Mom”.
A few weeks went by before Lisa decided to visit her mom in person and upon arrival her mother noticed she had lost weight and seemed nervous.
But Cadia did not judge or harass her daughter because she knew if she had not prayed for her daughter’s deliverance and shown unconditional love, her daughter might not have been alive today.
Perhaps one day her daughter will find the courage to share her story and seek professional help.
For now, she was glad Lisa had come home for the holidays. Cadia also knew she was greatly missed by her friends in the community and at church.
Many people go to church just for the service- the feast, or ceremony- and some go to meet with God.
Some go only for the lavish worship while some truly worship by the Spirit of God.
Some people go to church because they like the pastor’s eloquent and obviously gifted way with words, while some people truly need to hear from God.
I have learnt that sometimes God remains silent and withholds communication in order for Him to receive the glory once a promise has been fulfilled.
Have you heard of prophetic jealousy?
It’s similar to professional jealously and I believe it exist among those who have a reputation for being gifted with a word of knowledge, or prophecy.
I strongly believe that people who are known for their prophetic gift sometimes are placed under pressure to perform and maybe also pressured to deliver ‘a word from the Lord’.
After-all the people expect it!
Then after a while their followers or the people in the congregation take it for granted and if someone other than their leader has a word that doesn’t include them – or confirm them- they are often ungracious or downright hateful.
Many may say, “It can’t be from God, or I would know”.
God was powerfully at work in Jerusalem and Jesus was the center of it all.
Not even his own parents- or those who knew him best- were aware of what was happening.
Hear me when I say, God can use you yesterday, but remain silent today.
He can use me today, but speak through someone else tomorrow.
It may be someone everybody has heard of- but don’t particularly like or even someone who no one has heard.
Why? God is sovereign.
Being used by God does not require any of the following:
Ed.D. – (Doctor of Education), Th.D. (Doctor of Theology), Ph.D. (Doctor of Philosophy), LL.D. (Doctor of Laws) or any other sophisticated titles we all have sacrificed to attain.
I believe it’s important to have a purpose in life and as soon as you have figured it out-get moving!
The Bell Curve
According to my recent studies, the normal curve, also known as THE BELL CURVE because of its unique shape, is said to be shaped like a bell and is often the way in which certain characteristics such as intelligence, weight or height may be represented in the population.
The highest point on the curve typically represents the average score in any distribution.
Now distributions aren’t always normal in shape, just like people! Lol!
Some distributions are described as skewed. This occurs when the distribution is not even on both sides of a central score with the highest frequency.
Instead some scores are concentrated toward one side of the distribution.
For example, we might observe a study of people’s water drinking habits and it eventually reveals that most people drink between 4 and 8 16oz bottles of water daily, with no one drinking more than 8 bottles.
So, you may be asking, how does the above information tie into my message?
Well, if we were to start sieving through an enormous pile of professional profiles of people in our community who have been nominated for awards on Heroes day next year, one of the requirements should be- how have they used their intelligence to make a difference in their community.
National Heroes Day is a public holiday celebrated in the Cayman Islands on the fourth Monday in January.
Unlike other National Heroes Days in the Caribbean, the same people aren’t always celebrated on this day each year.
Instead, a committee comprised of public and private sector representatives meet to choose the theme for the following year’s holiday.
Different award categories are then established and the public is then allowed to nominate suitable individuals.
The National Heroes Day committee is then entrusted with the awesome but serious responsibility of deciding on all who are deserving recipients of the awards. Cool!
The theme chosen for 2018 was sports, with members of the public being invited to nominate people in the community who had made outstanding contributions to sports in the Cayman Islands.
National Heroes Day has been a public holiday in the Cayman Islands since 2003.
Every third Monday of October is National Heroes Day in Jamaica. This public holiday is dedicated to the memory of Jamaica’s seven official national heroes.
Next year Monday, it will be on the 21st October 2019.
On National Heroes Day, six heroes and one heroine will still be remembered for their heroic deeds that led to greater freedom and economic growth and prosperity for their homeland.
For example, Alexander Bustmante was Jamaica’s first prime minister. Three other heroes were hanged after leading revolts against oppression and “social injustice”. And heroine “Nanny of the Maroons” led a group in resistance and raids against the British colonialists. Wow!
Modern day heroes will also be recognized and given awards on National Heroes Day 2019.
This is in accord with Jamaica’s government-run “honors system” that is meant to encourage all noble and heroic deeds in its citizenry. Cool!
There will also be many special, festive events on National Heroes Day, including musical performances, dancing, cricket and soccer matches, art and craft exhibits, agricultural shows, and more.
Oh, the excitement of it all!
Guess what else is happening around the world?
Every 1st February is National Heroes Day in Rwanda and it is a day selected to remember numerous officially designated national heroes who lost their lives in the cause of their country.
Rwanda’s previous flag was a red-yellow-green tricolor with a large black letter “R” (to distinguish it from the otherwise identical Flag of Guinea). Derived from the flag of Ethiopia, the colors green, yellow, and red represented peace; the nation’s hope for its development; and the people.
What does the Rwandan flag mean?
Now the green is symbolic of the country’s prosperity, the yellow is symbolic of potential and real economic development, and the blue is symbolic of happiness and peace. The sun and its rays are said to represent enlightenment. Awesome!
I have learnt that Rwanda is a country with a diverse culture and rich heritage. The Rwandan cuisine is famous all-over East Africa, with its signature East African dish – Ugali and vegetables. Yum-Yum in my tummy!
How wealthy is Rwanda?
Rwanda is reported to have the 35th-highest Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at Purchasing Power Parity (PPP) among African countries (20.32 million International dollars).
The top 10 African countries by GDP (PPP) are: Africa, Nigeria, Egypt, South Africa, Algeria, Morocco, Angola, Sudan, Ethiopia, Tanzania. Wow!
According to Encyclopedia Britannica, the flag of France (French: Drapeau français) is a tricolor flag featuring three vertical bands coloured blue (hoist side), white, and red.
It is known to English speakers as the French Tricolour or simply the Tricolour (French: Tricolore).
The Tricolour has become one of the most influential flags in history, with its three-colour scheme being copied by many other nations, both in Europe and the rest of the world.
The royal government used many flags, the best known being a blue shield and gold fleur-de-lis (the Royal Arms of France) on a white background, or state flag. Early in the French Revolution, the Paris militia, which played a prominent role in the storming of the Bastille, wore a cockade of blue and red, the city’s traditional colours.
According to French general Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette, white was the “ancient French colour” and was added to the militia cockade to create a tricolour, or national, cockade.
This cockade became part of the uniform of the National Guard, which succeeded the militia and was commanded by Lafayette.
The colours and design of the cockade are the basis of the Tricolour flag, adopted in 1790. The only difference was that the 1790 flag’s colours were reversed. A modified design by Jacques-Louis David was adopted in 1794.
The royal white flag was used during the Bourbon restoration from 1815 to 1830; the tricolour was brought back after the July Revolution and has been used ever since 1830.
The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin
The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin was one of many world landmarks illuminated in the French flag colors after the November 2015 Paris attacks.
During the Hundred Years’ War, England was recognized by a red cross, Burgundy, a red saltire, and France, a white cross.
This cross could figure either on a blue or a red field. The blue field eventually became the common standard for French armies. The French regiments were later assigned the white cross as standard, with their proper colours in the cantons.
The French flag of a white cross on a blue field is still seen on some flags derived from it, such as those of Quebec and Martinique.
The flag of Joan of Arc during the Hundred Years’ War is described in her own words,
“I had a banner of which the field was sprinkled with lilies; the world was painted there, with an angel at each side; it was white of the white cloth called ‘boccassin’; there was written above it, I believe, ‘JHESUS MARIA’; it was fringed with silk.”
Joan of Arc
Joan’s standard led to the prominent use of white on later French flags.
From the accession of the Bourbons to the throne of France, the green ensign of the navy became a plain white flag, the symbol of purity and royal authority. The merchant navy was assigned “the old flag of the nation of France”, the white cross on a blue field.
The Panthéon is a building in the Latin Quarter in Paris, France. It was originally built as a church dedicated to St. Genevieve and to house the reliquary châsse containing her relics but, after many changes, now functions as a secular mausoleum containing the remains of distinguished French citizens.
In 1885, when the ashes of Victor Hugo were brought there in honor of that great man after the national outpouring of emotion caused by his death, the Pantheon became the final resting place of those who have become known as Les Grands Hommes (The Great Men).
The Panthéon is also home, in its immense entrance hall, to Foucault’s pendulum, named after a French physicist, designed to demonstrate the Earth’s rotation in relation to a frame of reference by Galileo. Cool!
72 illustrious personalities reside there today:
– Jean Jaurès (1859-1914), the father of French socialism, assassinated in 1914. – Emile Zola (1840-1902), an important writer and journalist. – Jean Moulin (1841-1941), a hero of the French Resistance during the Second World War. – André Malraux (1901-1976), writer and minister for Culture, whose ashes were brought there in 1996. – Alexandre Dumas (1802-1870), an important popular writer, whose ashes were brought there in 2002. – Jean Monnet (1888-1979), a politician who worked to create the European Community in the wake of World War II. – René Cassin (1887-1976), the spiritual father and principal author of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights adopted by the UN in 1948. – Pierre (1859-1906) and Marie (1867-1934) Curie, Nobel prizewinners for physics for their work with radium.
What was the Pantheon used for?
Roman Pantheon. The Roman Pantheon is the most preserved and influential building of ancient Rome. It is a Roman temple dedicated to all the gods of pagan Rome. As the brick stamps on the side of the building reveal it was built and dedicated between A.D 118 and 125.
What is the pantheon made of?
The Pantheon that Hadrian created is a circular temple made of concrete faced with brick, with a Greek-style façade and a magnificent dome rising from its walls. The most striking feature of the building is the 27-foot circular hole (the oculus, or eye) atop the dome.
What does the pantheon symbolize?
The Pantheon is still discussed today as a building clouded in mystery. The original purpose of the building is unknown. Although the temple is dedicated to all Greek gods the scale and size of the temple emphasized power and Roman duty. There is also celestial symbolism present in the temple.
What does the pantheon say above?
Here is some history that I was pleased to locate:
In 1744, Louis XV decreed the building of a prestigious basilica in honor of Sainte-Geneviève to whom he attributed his healing after a serious illness.
The architect Soufflot was awarded the project in 1755. This project was also part of the political will of Louis XV. The basilica had to rival that of Saint Peter’s in Rome and above all re-establish the prestige of a divided church.
Soufflot placed the basilica in a monumental square in the very heart of the area of religious contestation, where the Jansenists officiated at Saint-Médard.
The architecture of the basilica is a sign of the architectural renewal and experimental research that was prevalent at the time and during the centuries of the Enlightenment.
Indeed, the ornamental vocabulary and the central plan in the shape of a Greek cross were inspired by ancient Greek architecture, the lightness of the structure of the vault is evocative of gothic art and the dome speaks of the Renaissance. The light entered through forty-five tall windows.
During the Revolution: the basilca become the Panthéon National.
In 1791, the basilica became the Panthéon National to house the ashes of the nation’s great men: Voltaire in 1791, Jean-Jacques Rousseau in 1794, great men from the century of Enlightenment whose writing contributed to the changes wrought by the Revolution.
The high windows were also sealed to emphasize its role as a tomb. Very interesting.
When all is said and done, I like learning and I like sharing what I have learnt.
I only hope and pray that the above information may prove useful to someone considering an exciting role as another one of our nation’s heroes!