Allegiance to the Cross

Allegiance to the Cross

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The Cross is powerful. It breaks the chains of sin and gives power to all people who believe. It restores. It redeems. It wins every time. 

But lately, some people pledge their allegiance and entire being on other things: the flag, the national anthem, a political party, or a person who is not Jesus.

I am not saying not to be thankful for the blessings of life and living in America but America is not heaven. None of the temporary titles will serve an eternal purpose. Admission to heaven does not require a color, party, or denomination. 

I’m not saying that you can’t be passionate about the things of this world. There are things that I am passionate about too. But what I am saying is don’t let the troubles of this world cloud the eternal things.

There is no human, institution, or solution able to solve the troubles of the world. So don’t get so worked up about the current news that it drives you crazy. God is the one who will restore humanity at the appointed time.

So the bickering and “taking extreme measures” to show allegiance to a temporary political view, person, or issue is futile in the grand scheme of things.

This life is fleeting. All these things will pass away but the Lord’s Word and Will reigns.

So rethink your allegiance.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Wisdom from the Wise

Wisdom from the Wise

Listen, my son, to your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching. They are a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck.-Proverbs 1:8-9

Listen, my sons, to a father’s instruction; pay attention and gain understanding. I give you sound learning, so do not forsake my teaching. For I too was a son to my father, still tender, and cherished by my mother.-Proverbs 4:1-3

Remember that time in your life when you wanted to live your own life. When you thought your parents and older people were out to ruin your life and cramp your style. You think you know the world…

For me, I grew up with Haitian, Bible-believing Christian parents. To give you insight to my life,

  •  I was not allowed to go to sleepovers,
  • I was chaperoned everywhere with my friends (i.e. movies, malls, hangouts),
  •  Back to school shopping: reliable supplies took precedence over fashionable supplies.
  • At least a 20 question deposition before I could ever go anywhere
  • Summers were spent getting ready for the new school year
  • I could not share clothes with other people
  • And the list goes on…

I was not cool at all growing up. If anything, I was the plain jane girl who just went to school and church. I craved to be cool but my parents were not the ones to be messed with. They were a team. They were active in my upbringing. There was a standard to keep: go to school, go to church, serve the Lord, and be a good citizen.

I hated how strict they were.

Fast forward to today, my adult life is quite different. Yes, I am living at home. Yes, the rules still apply BUT…I value them so much. The parent-child dynamic is different. I seek their advice and they give me guidance.

I started realizing from college till now, my parents were right to be strict. I am not the person I am today without the structure, spiritual maturity, intelligence, and discipline of my parents.

My parents were both raised by single parents and had to make a way all by themselves. They had little support.  They did not have all the guidance I had or someone checking on them. So as new parents, they gave my siblings and me the upbringing they never had.

My parents really guarded me but also educated me about life. They did not want to make my life miserable; they wanted to prepare me and teach me for life ahead.

My parents were not rich monetarily, had privilege in their community, or had elite status. But they invested values that I did not depart from. 

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Whether it’s a parent, mentor, or parent-like figure, their wisdom is valuable. They lived longer than you or me. Yes, if they love you enough to give you tough love and Godly wisdom, listen. Take their advice to heart.

To have what I have is a testament to God’s grace in giving me God-driven parents. No, they are not perfect people but that’s ok. I am not a perfect child but they still love me.

So I do ask for advice for approval and support. I do believe they like the fact that I come to them for advice. But I know my parents truly have my best interest at heart. They KNOW me almost too well. I am an adult but I am thankful for them. No matter much I grow up, the instruction of my parents does matter to me.

So value the people in your life who pour life into you. 

If you are blessed enough to have your parents on this side of heaven, value them. If not, remember their instruction and the memories.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Watch Your Mouth!

Watch Your Mouth!

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Watch what you say and how you say it.

You can’t burn your pipe on both ends and expect respect for one side and not be criticized for the other side.

These days, there are some people who have really confused me. I don’t know which person to believe.

For Christians, the world is watching our words. Believe that. That does not mean we cannot stand on our Biblical values. The Bible says to stand firm and let nothing move us as long as God is the center of what we believe.

Just filter what you say. I don’t always post what is on my mind. I think about my audience. I think about if what I am saying is uplifting, edifying, or encouraging. Am I saying words for my own self-benefit and ego or for others? Does what I say reflect Jesus or reflect my own pride and ego?

Yes, no one is perfect. I mess up. I am preaching to myself. I have watch my mouth too. 

The best thing I can do and you can do is: If you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything. Think before you post. Check your sources. 

This is not Bianca’s words. Read what God says about my words and your words.

The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing. Anxiety weighs down the heart, but a kind word cheers it up.- Proverbs 12:18, 25

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit.-Proverbs 15:1, 4

Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.- Proverbs 16: 24

Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.-Proverbs 18:21

 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.-Ephesians 4:29

Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.-Colossians 4:5-6

 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect,  keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.- 1 Peter 3:15-16

So remember to watch your mouth, please.

Blissfully,

Bianca

A Word From Mama B!

A Word From Mama B!

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A Word from Mama B: Don’t Let Someone’s Insecurity Stop Your Greatness.

I realize how insecure people can be. They have this cloud and attitude to bring people to their lowly, miserable level. Know that there will be people who don’t wish success for you, who wait for your demise and failure like a season finale, who find a “dig” to make you feel less, who try to find ways to silence you, who call you by your name.

Don’t be bothered by their hatred. Sometimes people are jealous that they did not live up to your now successes. They hold a bitterness which holds them back. It should not affect you.

A higher level of you will come with a level of haters. But, stand firm in who you are and whose you are. You have purpose and a spot that God put you in for a reason. 

Don’t disappoint yourself due to a person’s insecurity and small opinion.

If God approves, no man can deny. 

Blissfully,

Bianca

A Breath of Fresh Air

A Breath of Fresh Air

My Breath of Fresh Air is “Do not give up on God and His Church.”

Real talk: There were times in my life where I wanted to give up God and give up going to church.

I always felt that the Church was to be a perfect place with perfect people. The worship was perfect. The programs were a delicate balance. No talk of politics. Everyone was in perfect harmony with one another. Slowly, that perfect human expectation faded. I was getting disappointed and hurt by people in the church in various ways. This perfect church did not exist on this side of heaven.

But you know what? There are times where I forget God and look to a human expectation of church rather than look to God’s Design of His Church. God created the Church for HIMSELF and His children to grow, to learn, and to be encouraged no matter what is going on in life.  God is the head of the Church, not the pastor. God’s Word is the Truth that I should hear from the person He designed to preach. God puts the heart of worship in each person. God calls children to lead, love, care for this lost and dying world. The Church is God’s hospital for humanity. I hurt, you hurt, we all hurt but we do not have to stay that way. God makes a way for lost, hurting people in need of a Savior. God does not call us to be alone but to live in community with believers. No church is perfect but God is perfect and His Word is perfect. 

The Bible does not have the perfect physical formula for the perfect church meaning what type of music, programs vs. no programs, church attire, etc. God inspires His people in different ways. A contemporary church is no less than a traditional church. A suit and tie man is a sinner just like the jeans and t-shirt guy. Outreach and missions is a command of God.  If God is present, then it is all good. I do believe that Baptists will not be the only people in heaven. I believe His Church will be filled different with all tribes, tongues, denominations, and people. The main theme will be that we loved and walked with Jesus and we get to spend eternity with Him. That is the part of Jesus we all as believers should strive and thrive in. 

So don’t give on Jesus and His church. Jesus wants you to know His truth  and come to faith in Him. He wants you to love and be loved by His children. A local church refreshes and strengthens you. You find yourself and walk with other believers who are not perfect.  No matter where you are in life, God is there with you. Don’t give up on Him because He never gave up on us. His Church is within reach.

Let me end with Scripture:

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.  Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.  And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.-Colossians 3:15-17

The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.  For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy.-Colossians 1:15-18

Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.- 1 Corinthians 12:12-14

Take care friends. Jesus loves you.

Blissfully,

Bianca

As A Single in the Local Church

As A Single in the Local Church

So I have been single for 28 years of my life.

From 0-18, I was a kid…no need for boyfriends. I was not allowed to date till I was 18.

From 18-25, I was single. I was in the Young College group. Safe security. There were single people, dating couples, even engaged couples. 

Then came 25-28, I am too old to be in the Young College group but too young for the Adult Singles….hmm…

I have been in local churches where there was a singles population and where I was single, professional party of one. 

There have been times where I felt invisible. I was not in a relationship. I was not married. I was not married with children. It’s like I was not exciting enough. It’s like the best questions I was asked was: “So what do you do these days?” 

Or when your friends talk about the kids carpooling, baby stories, wedding plans, “marriage moments,” breastfeeding tips, homeschooling ideas, and you’re like “I finished organizing my DVD collection.” and they say “Oh, that’s nice” and get back to their life talks….like that’s not exciting!!!

What’s up with that? I am exciting. I do stuff. I am not at home knitting in my tower waiting for my prince to come. 

Sometimes I feel like there is a disconnect with the Church and single people. We are just as valuable as the married people, the elderly people, the divorced people, the widowers, the college people, the children. Sometimes it feels like the Church wants me “to get married already” so I can be exciting.

Sometimes I feel “left out” or “alienated” for being single. There aren’t any singles programs at church, a thriving singles ministry, or even singles at the Church that I can relate to. I just have to be alone and accept that I may get the short-end.

There is not a solution to my frustration. Sometimes it’s just the way things are. Situations are what they are.

For any single Christian,it’s all about opportunity. Pray for the opportunities to feel included in the body of Christ. To be active. To be involved. To meet authentic people who pour into your life.

Inadequacy of relationship status is the Enemy’s way of telling lies that “you’re not good enough ,” “you’re alone because you are the problem,” “you can’t be a part of a church; you’re not married with kids,”These people won’t like you, you’re not married.” These are lies that I combat in my own life. Like I have to change churches because I may be the only person like me. Don’t think that. Ask for the Holy Spirit to guide you and give you confidence.

Yes, I do fellowship with all kinds of people. I am an extrovert at heart so I will talk to anyone with a pulse. God has shown me avenues to be involved with other Christian singles and other types of people. One of them being Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) where there are classes for men, women, and children from all walks of life in different stages of life. God has sent wonderful friends from all relationship statuses who love me and accept me as their single friend. God has opened doors where I can serve and be a part of the body of Christ.

So, pray for those avenues and people who can encourage and uplift you. God hears the single person too. We are assets to the body. Yes, it may feel uncomfortable but God likes that. Don’t complain when God opens those doors differently than you thought.  God answers prayers in the way He sees fit.  It’ll work out.

Single Christian, you will be alright. Hang on and stay strong.

Blissfully,

Bianca

A Gentle Reminder

A Gentle Reminder

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”- John 13: 34-35

In my life, actions speak louder than words. It is not enough to say I am a Christian. I am a “insert denomination”. It is not enough to say I believe in the Bible.

It’s not enough to say “I love my neighbor” if you do not show it. I know people who say they believe in Jesus but are still prejudice and sometimes downright racist. What they post, what they say, how they say does not reflect Jesus.  And people are turned off by that.  Actually, I’m turned off by that.

Remember this…

Love comes from God. Jesus is the ultimate lover because He died for you and me. It does not get more intense than that.

Love is specific and special. It’s not a hippy-dippy love. It is intentional. It speaks louder. People remember how people made them feel whether good or bad. So who do you want to be known for: your love or your bitterness?

Love is sacrificial. It means putting yourself  second for someone else. Whether that be Jesus, your spouse, your children.

Love is valuing yourself. Yes, put others first but don’t forget yourself. Know that you are God’s beautiful creation. You are worth loving and being loved.

Love is unfathomable. It cannot be completely grasped but you can see pieces of it in your every day life. Heck, you can show it everyday.

Love is a lot of things.

In the current era, I feel like people are forgetting love. There is more division than ever. It’s us against them.

When we see the world in the eyes of Jesus, love comes naturally. It does not matter what characteristics you have. God loves us all.

So remember to love intentionally in the eyes of Jesus. You don’t know what people are going through. You can be the person that changes someone’s perception, outlook, or dare I say it their eternity.

So love.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Why I Will Never Be An Evangelical

Why I Will Never Be An Evangelical

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.  Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

1 Peter 2:9-10

In the news and media, the term, “evangelical” has been thrown around as a way to box all Christians into this one stereotype.  At first, it did not bother me. I was a Bible-believing Christian. I went to church. I tithed. I went on mission trips. I was all around good.

But now, my perception has changed. Being an earthly evangelical seems more attached to an earthly institution.  With the current resident of the White House, some evangelicals do not reflect who Christ is. They tend to forget their allegiance to God for a political party. They may “love their neighbor” but post hateful, racists things online. They smile at me yet hate someone who looks like me. They “love my little Haitian family” but hate the “illegals who invade their land.” Their Savior is in a political party or a president. They act in a way that America is heaven when this is not our final destination. 

I personally chose my banner to the world to be a Christ-following evangelist, not an “earthly evangelical.” The last time I checked Jesus did not say I had to be a Republican or a conservative to get to Heaven. A political party does not represent Jesus.

A Christ-following evangelist is a kingdom-minded person who is set apart and who stands on Biblical values on all issues.

It’s easy to talk about family values and abortion but where are the christians and evangelical groups who stand with the immigrants, the women, widows, the orphans, the discriminated, etc?

Is there silence?

A silent Christian towards injustice is an ineffective ambassador for Christ. Silence means complacency. Jesus was bold on the issues. He challenged the injustices of people….He went so far to die on the cross for all the sins of the world. Jesus did not waiver his beliefs based on the government.

I am not calling for anarchy but, Christians, let’s not trail-mix God’s Word into what we want and don’t want. All of God’s Word is TRUTH…point blank. All issues matter in God’s eyes. 

The world is watching us. Where we stand. Who we stand for. How we stand. 

“Earthly Evangelicals” are not the ones to win souls to Christ. Authentic Christ-following evangelists who live set apart and tell the truth with God as their guide have an impact. God knows the hearts of man and He can transform lives. We, as Christ followers, are the vessels. It’s not enough to have the title of  “Christian” or “evangelical”.

No Christian is the same. All of us are sinners destined for hell. Jesus went to the Cross to save us ALL. I am not perfect and I fail miserably in my walk. But God has given me grace and mercy. Thus, I chose to win souls by being His. It’s what I strive and what all Christ-followers should strive for.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Set Apart

Set Apart

It is easier said than done…

As a kid, I thought to get to Heaven, I have to follow my parents and do good things to get to heaven.  As a pre-teen and teenager, I found myself depressed because I was trying to be as “Christian” as possible but fell short often. I thought that if I did enough, God would bless me and I would be in Heaven and not in Hell.

Fast forward to college, I still had this “I can’t do this because my parents said so” mentality. I knew I was saved but being in college was a lot. Of course, my peers always said, “you’re 18, you can do what you want,” “why do you do everything your parents say,” “you are your own person.” Like ya’ll, I felt attacked. Like I am trying to check all the boxes of Christianity and follow my parents’ rules. I was being tossed on all sides that I was naive, traditional, weird, and being controlled by my parents yet trying to be a Christian.

It was not until the first night of Baptist Collegiate Ministries (BCM) where my eyes were truly open.

The BCM President said, “I know that some of you did grow up in a Christian home. I know that your parents told you to go to church, do missions, and  read your Bible. You have been protected under your Christian parents but I want you to know that your parents are not God. When you stand in judgment, you cannot assume that you will be with Jesus because your  saved parents or grandparents. You must give an account for yourself. You must know what you believe. Being a Christian is having a relationship with Jesus, not a list of rules.”

Wait what!?! I have to have ownership for my faith….my mind was blown and that was the defining moment for me.

So throughout my freshman year, I decided to read the New Testament as a quiet time to truly know why I believe what I believe. I wanted to have my own Biblical foundation.  So throughout college, I read and kept making personal choices for myself. Once I began to understand that Christianity is not a checklist to heaven, I began to experience a little more grace and freedom in my relationship.

The key to my relationship with Christ is it was all me. It was not just what my parents said (which was correct). It was my convictions that were given to me by God. It was me seeking truth rather than relying on someone else 100%.

But living in my convictions was not easy. It was manageable in my undergraduate life because I had Christian groups that I was involved with and I was mostly around my Christian friends. We were all weirdly Christian together.  The challenge was when I graduated and went to law school.

Law school was unchartered territory. I left my Christian bubble for something I had never experienced: real freedom…like 6 hours from home and comfort.

I promised myself that law school would not change me but grow me into a better Christ-follower. The first year was hard to be honest. My Christian demeanor stuck out like a sore thumb..like I wore a shirt that said, “Hi. I’m a Christian and I wore this shirt to let you know.”

There were moments where people looked at me weirdly or whether intentionally or jokingly made fun of the way I talked, walked, dressed, and lived. I felt bad because I wanted to fit in with my classmates but I did not go to bars, nightclubs, or lounge and I don’t drink. I don’t curse in my regular dialogue. I went to church almost every Sunday I could. I posted scripture and encouraging things on social media because that’s just me and I want people to feel good. I like to paint and have sober fun.

I felt very alienated because I felt alone in my faith. I realized that I decided to live for Christ which meant that I would be unpopular. But I am reminded of this: “If the world hates you, keep in mind that it hated me first. If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. – John 15: 18-19

Jesus knew what I felt to be hated. He was perfect in every way but even his family, disciples, and followers did not understand him.

So, I am no better. If I am hated for being set apart, then I am probably on the right track.

But know what the wonderful thing is: the same people who were weirded out by my Christian demeanor have asked for prayer, like the encouraging things I say or post. Some don’t allow people or themselves to curse in front of me. My mom has told me that, “Bianca, people respect you because you stick with who you are. And you don’t change your stance.”

So I treat my walk with God as a banner to the world. Yes, it is strange, uncommon and traditional. But it is me.

Blissfully,

Bianca

Laying It All Out

Laying It All Out

With everything that is going on in the world, I wanted to set the record straight on my personal journey as a Christ follower.

I feel like this will be a challenge because I will be discussing my personal stance on certain hot topics. I may lose friends. I may lose followers. But I am willing to lay it out.

First, my allegiance is not to a party, a religious group, or a Facebook group. My allegiance is to Jesus Christ alone. Yes, I am in this world. But I am not of this world. Yes, I am thankful to live in America but I know this is not my permanent home. Heaven is my home.

Second, I do not speak for all Christians. I speak for myself. I have my own convictions. I believe what I believe. I am open to hear people out but ultimately I have my opinion.

Third, I speak from my own experiences. I do not live the same life as everyone so my viewpoint will be unique. Sometimes, you will understand where I am coming from. Sometimes you won’t.

Fourth, I am a sinner saved by grace. I make mistakes. I am no way perfect. I don’t want to preach to you. I am stating my own truth. These posts are to challenge myself as much as you all.

I hope you take each post with a grain of salt. I hope you are challenged. I hope you are encouraged. Thanks

Blissfully,

Bianca