Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Happy New Year!

I know I am a couple of days late but... I want to wish you all a happy new year! How many of you made a couple of New Year resolutions and already broke them? (Lol) It is okay, just start over! It may not feel like a new year because you are faced with the same job, or the same decision about life after graduation, or another tuition bill. Your physical circumstances may not be new, but your mindset and perspective about life and the New Year can be renewed. I am not going to preach, but let this scripture marinate on your mind Romans 12:2 “do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind.” Let’s recap!

The last time I blogged I talked about Winter Break and how much you should focus on serving others, reading books, and more. Have I done any of what I said I was going to do? Sort of! No, I have not been to any soup kitchens, or preached fire of brimstone; however I did have the biggest ministry opportunity in my own home.

For those who do not know me, I come from a home where my family members are not saved nor do they attend church. I am considered an odd ball because I am a Christ follower and maybe my personality too, but hey I love me! Lol I do not come from the traditional family where we share meals, and hang out with one another, or show each other affection. In my family it is my mother, two little brothers, and me. When we were growing up, my brothers and I basically decided to just fight or ignore each other. There was no, I love you or I miss you, just fighting. Our family thought it was normal. Since then I came to realize that it is not “normal.” I felt the conviction even more when I gave my life to Christ at 18 years old.  For years, I prayed, fasted, and cried that my family could enjoy each other’s company and maybe even talk about Christianity without the chaos.  In December 2012, the prayer I prayed years ago came to past. When I came home that week, my brother approached me. Now I was a little nervous and put myself in a karate stance to prepare to fight (I do not know anything about martial arts). However he came towards me and said “Come give me a hug!” Surprisingly, we put away our pride and engaged in a deep conversation. I apologized to him for not being a great example of a sister when I was younger and disinterested in having a relationship with him. In my pre-Jesus days, I was a complete mess and my family was the victim of my craziness. For the first time, I told my brother I loved him and I almost cried. It was not that I never loved my family or held things against, but it was hard to express love to a family member when all you knew was anger, hate, and fights.

Another part of my prayers was to one day being able to minister to my family. I believe that the first ministry and the hardest ministry is your family. Indeed, my brother and I had a lengthy conversation about being a Christian, social issues, God, and more. My brother did not give his life to the Lord, but I believe that our talk have planted something in his heart. I also had a conversation with my younger brother and expressed that I loved him. However, we rarely had a chance to talk because he was so busy. I strongly believed that biggest miracle and blessing in 2012 was seeing God help mend broken relationships.


Again Happy New Year!

-Shani P.

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