Is it me or does it seems like things are so crazy right now?
Make no mistake, I’m so grateful to be experiencing one of the most elevating times I’ve ever seen ministry wise. God is saving, setting free and promoting… Yet, the craziness I speak of has to do with all that has been going on in the news and in our communities…
From racial motivated crimes, to an attack on covenant in the government, to a complete twisting of what it means to be a Christ follower. Now more than ever prayer is in need…
It’s with the aforementioned in mind I simply want to encourage anyone who needs it. Those who are flawed but called. Those who are living out what they preach and being criticized for it. Those who are unashamedly following Christ, even to the chagrin of onlookers and a society that perceives Christianity as a “hateful religion.” To you I say,
“Don’t faint! Keep preaching truth and continue to love people!”
Trust, there is a way to share God’s uncompromising truth in wisdom and love. My personal prayer is that God continues to download wisdom into me, so that I can share His word, in love. I also pray that we, collectively, don’t allow the distracting tactics of the enemy to detour us from the bigger picture. No matter what comes, Jesus is still Lord and God is still in control.
Most of all I’m praying that we don’t let an increasingly cynical society make us ashamed of the God that has kept us, blessed us and continues to do great things for us. Remember, God declares the end from the beginning and what we’re seeing is not all there is… Just keep praying. Keep fasting. Keep moving….
And let God arise…
Welp, as promised I’m bringing you another great recipe, with a healthy spin. Now, I do have to say that I, like the originators of this recipe questioned whether this would actually taste good. But, to my surprise, it DID!
Beef Fried “Rice!” Yep, that’s what I made for dinner tonight. Normally I don’t eat beef often but I’d forgotten to thaw out some chicken or shrimp, so I had to go with some beef sausage I had in the fridge. Which ended up working out well because it tasted a lot like Vietnamese sausage I’d had previously. Armed with my ingredients, I surfed the web for a good recipe that DIDN’T have rice as the main ingredient. Now, before you frown, hear ya girl out! LOL!
I know fried rice without actual rice sounds odd, but for those who are trying to be mindful of eating foods that are carb heavy; this may be the recipe for you. In short, cauliflower is grated down and used in place of rice and it ends up tasting really similar. If I was rating my first time results tonight, I’d give it 7 out of 10. My version fell a little short only due to the fact I went a little extra fine on the grating of the cauliflower, thus not making for the prettiest presentation. All in all although it wasn’t a “10” in the looks department, my taste testers LOVED it! Yay!
So, I hope you guys try it and be sure to let me know your thoughts! Below is a link to site for the creators of the recipe. Of course you can modify to your specific taste!
The Chaste Life
Welcome to the “Good Eats” Tab!!! The point of this section is NOT to be a in depth food blog, but rather to just highlight some tasty food as well as give you some ideas of where to find good food in your city as well as how to modify recipes for your specific taste. So, with that said…I’ll cut right to the chase…
I like food. A lot.
If you’ve followed me for any length of time, you know that I often post meals from my travels , and so on. Well, recent I thought it’d be cool to (in addition to posting my usual travel fare) remix some staple dinner recipes and see if I could make them healthier. So, just as a little preview, below I have posted a dish I created last night. Lastly, be sure to take into consideration your own personal taste when adapting this recipe to your needs. I’m a season as I go kind of cook, so most of this was done to taste. Nevertheless, it’s a pretty simple recipe so I’m sure y’all when adapt it!
Dish: Gluten Free Spaghetti w/ meatless sauce
1 package of “Beyond Meat” beef crumbles
¼ cup each of onion, green/red and yellow peppers
2 Tsp. of Olive Oil
1 Tsp. of garlic butter
1 bundle of fresh basil (8 leaves) torn, not cut
3 Tsp. of minced garlic (I like a lot of garlic, lol)
Italian season, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, onion powder, garlic powder (season to your taste, in a combination that works with your palette).
32oz cans of crushed tomatoes
¼ cup of fresh mushrooms
1/4 Parmesan cheese
The Cheesy Garlic Bread
1 gluten free or regular baguette
4 Tsp. of garlic butter spread (2 tsp. on each side of bread)
3 oz. of mixed blend Italian cheese
Sautee veggies in olive oil until tender.
Add fresh garlic after 3-5 minutes or until veggies are translucent
Add beef crumbles
Stir and let cook for 5 minutes or until beef is fully incomporated and melts into the veggies but is still firm
Add Tomatoes and let simmer for 15-20 minutes. If consistency is too think dilute with water or broth (note if using broth make sure it’s low sodium as to not over salt your dish)
Next add seasonings of your choosing (this is important; otherwise your sauce will taste bland).
Lastly, let simmer on low for another `15 minutes and finally add torn basil.
Boil pasta in lightly salted water and spaghetti is ready to serve.
Preheat oven to 375
Cut bread long ways, down the middle
Spread garlic butter spread onto bread
Sprinkle cheese evenly over the butter/garlic mixture
Toast in oven until bubbling brown
Cut on the diagonal and serve
As if overnight your heart begins to shift. Your desires change and the landscape of your life begins to align with what God purposed for you all along. What am I speaking of? A purpose driven life…
Purpose, in many settings seems to be the “hot button” word of the day. We use it as an excuse to connect with people, disconnect with people and to even justify sudden decision and God led changes. Now, is there anything wrong with the aforementioned? No, not at all…not unless they’re not truly God led…
Nevertheless, I bring up the topic of purpose because of what resonated with my spirit a week ago while speaking to one of my friends. As we talked, God showed me a small glimpse of what 2015 was going to be for some of us. Not all, but some…
In summary, “Next year is the year of (significant) life choices.”
Those are the words I shared with my sister. In sharing with her I begin to watch God reveal the specific nature of that word. As we flowed in conversation, I saw a glimpse of what’s coming…
And although I can’t share all of the details here, I will say this: Next year, for many of us, will be THAT year we’ve been waiting to see. That year where your vision board becomes more than just a collection of pictures and partially fulfilled promises. That year your life begins to look like that detailed prophesy He showed you from the days of your youth. That word you and I have faithfully watched over, anticipating the manifestation of God’s promise. 2015 is the year you and I find ourselves in places we never imagined, with people we were destined to meet and all so that He might receive glory. No clever wordplay here. No New Year’s resolution along with a catchy 2015 slogan. No, this word is different. 2015 is going to be destiny defining for those who believe. God is elevating a small core of leaders who have served tirelessly in the background. Those who have genuinely and sincerely celebrated the lives, joys and ministries of others while awaiting their promise.
Yeah, this is for THOSE people. This is for us…
I’m not sure what your promise looks like or what you’re believing God for -a promotion on your job. Elevation in ministry. Meeting the spouse of your dreams. Healing in your body –whatever it is, BELIEVE for it! Mark 9:23 reminds us, “…everything is possible for one who believes” (NIV).
Again, I say, BELIEVE! Believe by standing in faith. Believe by putting feet to your faith and getting to work. Prepare to receive what it is you say you want. Take the certification to increase your promotion potential. Ask God to show you how to love that spouse that is on the way. Change your eating habits so that you might achieve optimum fitness (I’m talking to me right here, lol).
But you get the point. Let’s take steps to do OUR part and give room for God to do His. I don’t know about anybody else but I’m getting ALL God has for me and I’m just bold enough to speak it! He’s done SO much, yet I know He has so much more in store and I’m snatching EVERYTHING He’s promised me! The wait is over for me because God said so AND I agree with Him! And because He’s DOING it for me, I know He can do the same for you! Pray and ask God to show you the details of your destiny. Trust, God is a God of specific prophesy. Listen for His voice and follow His leading. I promise…He knows where we’re going…
2015 is a blank canvas…
What will you draw on it?
Because of my minister and testimony, I get a little more criticism than average. When you’re as grown as I am, being a virgin can shift real quickly from the, “That’s so awesome” pat on the back to “Why and how???” look of concern. It’s unfortunate really. We live in a climate that looks at everything through a skeptical lens. My journey would be no exception. I’ve been scrutinized and read wrong. I’ve even had some people, asking why I don’t blog as frequently as I once did…
In contrast to when I first begin, it would appear as though I’ve been silent. I would post a blog here and there, but aside from that, I’ve been relatively quiet as it pertained to all things purity. It’s been interesting. I would get calls from singles ministry counterparts, wondering where I was. And I get it. The funny thing was I didn’t even have one solid answer to give at the time. There was nothing necessarily wrong. I just knew something had to change. In hindsight, I just was tired. And yeah, I’m well versed in the word. Yet, I’m still human just like you too. Along this journey there were times when I didn’t understand what God was doing. There were times when I saw exactly what God was doing. There were times where I wished I could just hurry through this chapter in my story. Real talk, no one tells you all that comes with waiting.
On one hand you’re sharing your testimony with a world that is so sexually desensitized virginity is looked at as some afar off unicorn, strictly exclusive to those deemed “undesirable,” socially awkward or extremely ridged. On the other hand you have SOME “church folk” who look at virginity with the same dose of skepticism, assuming virgins are either all of the above or operating in false sense of perfection –whatever that means.
Add the above to the fact that I was constantly being inundated with the myopic sounds of legalistic “advice,” shared from the cup of a bitter heart. I was tired of hearing it all. I didn’t want to hear it…or be it…
Now, hear my heart, I know a LOT of amazing people who share in accuracy and truth. Yet, those voices don’t always seem to be as readily championed as those who preach hurt, vengeance and pain. It’s interesting. Nevertheless, I wanted to be the change. I didn’t want to speak without revelation. I wanted to understand sexuality in a way that I hadn’t previously thought about. I wanted to minister to people from a place of grace, compassion and the truth of God’s word. I wanted to reach people who didn’t necessarily share my testimony but could still relate to my story.
I began the journey of writing one of the most important books I’ve ever penned earlier this year. “The Pleasure Principle: The Naked Truth about Holding Out –When You Want to Get It In!” is a book that shares the relevance of God’s word coupled with the truth of my testimony. And no, it’s not an autobiography, lol! Y’all would be bored if I ever decided to write a book about my life. Nevertheless, I digress. In writing this book, my heart’s desire was to give all of those attempting to live a chaste life, a look into the realities of purity. I wanted to show people that it’s not some afar off impossibility, but rather a very doable reality for those willing to stay committed to God’s process.
Throughout my journey I’ve discovered “we’re” a society so focused on making sure we don’t do the “big sin” that we assume everyone who hasn’t is “perfect.” But I’m not. Yeah so, I’ve never been a lesbian. I’ve never performed oral sex or even had actual sex for that matter. Does that make me perfect as it pertains to sex, courting and all things relational? Not at all. From grinding, to partial nudity, to heavy petting, I’ve experienced it. And just because that’s not my present everyday reality doesn’t mean I’m perfect. It simply means God is a keeper, in spite of me not having always wanted to be kept…that’s why “The Pleasure Principle” is so important…
It speaks to the everyday person. To the one that wants to walk in purity, but is unsure or even intimidated by the road ahead of them. And at the end of the day, if I walking in courage and transparency helps at least one person…well, then it will have more than been worth it.
So, that’s it. I’m excited about sharing my book and testimony with you all. As always feel free to email your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll answer them as quickly as I can. Lastly, thank you to all those who’ve been riding out this journey with me for all of these years. Your encouragement, love and support mean more than I can express. My prayer has always been and remains to be that my life would not be a reflection of my own doing, but that it would speak to the power of God and His ability to keep anyone. He’s done it for me; I know He’ll do it for you!
Your wait is just about over
Nikki Washington, Living
The Chaste Life
I have loved and won. I’ve loved and won and lost. I have loved, won, lost, longed and recovered. I think if most of us are honest, we all have. Everyone has at least one unrequited love story. In fact, few things bring the heart more sorrow than unresolved love. For as poetic is sounds on paper it is far more heart wrenching when lived out.
Tonight, I wanted to simply encourage the person who maybe experience heart hurt of any kind. To you I say:
Let your heart be at rest.
Know that if it’s meant to be, in the end it will be. And if your life is meant to take a different path, in the end, that will be as well. Either way, learn to accept what God allows and let your heart be at rest.
One of my favorite scriptures is, “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds (Psalm 147:3). Isn’t it interesting the order of restoration to that verse? God will not only wants to mend you back together, but he wants you to receive complete healing. Looking good on the outside and falling apart on the inside just won’t do with God. No, He wants you complete, whole and lacking nothing, so that you can be of greater us to the Kingdom AND so that when the time comes for you to love, you will do so with a pure heart and open spirit.
Trust, I know you may not see it now but, ALL pain has an expiration date. Just keep allowing God to mend and heal you. Keep your eyes fixed on God and the work He has for you. Rest your heart in His hands and watch as He not only heals you, but walks you into all the promises purposed for you.
So, that’s all. Just felt the need to encourage anyone who may be experiencing any type of heartache. Know that you are worthy of love and God has not forgotten you. He can’t…
Keep trusting Him.
The Chaste Life
Who are you?
I’m mean who are you, REALLY?
Who are you in front of your friends? What about your co-workers? Family? Are you consistently the same person or is there a difference? And do you allow people to impose their views of who they think you should be?
Just a little food for thought…
Can I just keep 100? I’m tired. I’m tired of seeing my sisters measure themselves according to images in magazines. I’m tired of my brothers measuring themselves according to their bank accounts. I’m tired of people being verbally beat up by standards that aren’t real and aren’t accurate. I’m tired of counseling people who were previously ill “counseled” via someone’s misguided social media “rant” masked as advice. And hear my heart; I know all aren’t negative. In fact, I’m blessed to know some amazing ministers, life coaches, leaders and certified experts that give GREAT, constructive advice via social media as well as other platforms. Yet, today I’m speaking of those words that just are godly and simply don’t edify. Those things that wound people more than help. See, I believe if we can get back to the basics of who God says we are, we’ll be a lot less likely to fall into listening to the negative chatter that would attempt to try to derail our worth.
Now, I’m sure some are like, “Okay, that’s cool Nikki but how do I get back to owning my worth?” Well, I’m glad you asked…
In short, start simply and think on these things:
- What does the bible say about me?
This is important because if our foundation isn’t rooted in God’s defining, then everything else we build on will be in vain.
- Daily affirm who God says that you are and surround yourself with people who will do the same.
Now, I’m not speaking of surrounding yourself with “yes men” or people who won’t hold you accountable. No, I’m speaking of people who will correct you when you’re wrong, yet affirm the positive things about you when you’re right. Also, knowing that the word of God reminds us (Proverbs 18:21) of the power of speaking life, it’s important for you, to hear YOU speak over and declare health to your OWN esteem. Remember, if we don’t know our worth, how can we expect anyone else to?
- Counteract negative self talk with positive thoughts of victories past.
The nature of some people is to focus more on the things that have went wrong in life, over the things that have went right. Subsequently, we often find it difficult to see all of the beautiful things God has done and all of the many ways God has brought us through. I have discovered that if you can keep yourself in remembrance of the victories of times past, you are more likely to believe that God can do the same thing again. It’s like the old adage, that’s been made popular by Tye Tribbett’s song…”If He did it before…He can do it again…’
In closing, there are many more points that would aid in embracing identity and worth, but I believe that these three give us a good starting point. My prayer is that not only would something shared here, bless you but it would cause you to see who God has called you to be in the COMPLETE sense of the word.
So, that all.
Always remember you are God’s design, not what “man” dictates. You are not the sum of your mistakes. You are a product of His grace. You are not a mere object. You are not your career, nor your skill. You are not what “they” want you to be…quite simply…you’re His reflection…
Keep walking in it.
The Chaste Life
Today kicks off our series on worth!!!
This series was initially started as a result of seeing a need. Long story short, I saw a need for a positive and accurate approach of how WE appropriate the word, “worth” and with the help of the Holy Spirit, I wanted to share, according to scripture, what the true meaning, intent and design for the word, “worth.”
Real talk, in a society that is so bent on ascribing worth to stuff, I just really wanted to get to the bottom of what God had to say about all of this…so, I sought understanding…
Also, let me say, through this series, I don’t expect everyone to always carry the same perspective, nor always agree. I do believe however, that some light will be shed on the topic and ultimately my desire is that we would all come into the true knowledge of how fearfully and wonderfully made we are…I truly believe when we know who we are, we’ll never be shaken by someone’s misappropriation of who we are. When we know who we are we’ll never settle for less than God’s will for our lives and most of all, when we know who we are, we’ll know our purpose and fulfill our GOD-given destiny.
In conclusion, in this series you will discover some writings as well as some videos and other points of inspiration. If you should have any questions, please feel free to email directly at, email@example.com. Truly, I’m looking forward to sharing with you what God has given to me….
And with that being said, let the journey begin…
P.S. Be sure to subscribe and check back later in the week for the next blog and video… and trust, you don’t want to miss it…:-)
“LET’S SPILL THE TEA, PEOPLE!!!”
Okay, so whether we call it, “keeping it real” or “spilling the tea,” the action remains the same. It’s all GOSSIP!
Of course, most don’t begin their gossiping as curt as my opening in this blog, but I used those words to paint the point. In essence, that’s what someone is saying when they open fire on a subject or person. It often starts with common phrases like,
“Bro, I just want to ‘warn’ you about so and so…” “Girl, I’m not sure about such and such but did you hear…because I heard…” Some even take the more religious approach to gossip, speaking in the tense of, “Be careful aligning with…because I sense in my spirit that…”
It’s all very crafty when you think about it. For whatever reason, some just seem to always find themselves on the giving end or receiving end of someone’s agenda laced gossip. So, what do you do? How do you handle someone speaking negative words about you? What do you do when the person gossiping is not handling the perceived “ought” the way the Matthew 18:15 instructs? In short, how do we rectify a “wrong” or gossip?
First, let’s get to the basics. According to notable theologian Dan Phillips, gossip can be defined as “…saying behind a person’s back what you would never say to his or her face.” On the opposite scale, flattery can mean “…saying to a person’s face what you would never say behind his or her back.” Also, I think it’s important to note, just because we WOULD say it to someone’s face, doesn’t make it okay either. Remember, it’s not always what we say…but how we say it…
Next, let’s talk about the “why” behind gossip. What I’ve discovered is the answers given are almost never the REAL reason behind the sharing of gossip. When really getting to the root of it gossip is more of a mirror into the heart of person gossiping, than a window out to the person being gossiped about. In short, it’s an insecurity thing. See, anything that attempts to attack your character, is often afraid of your influence. And the way a gossiping spirit attempts to hinder influence is by attacking credibility under the guise of “doing the greater good,” “telling it like it is” or “dispensing godly justice.”
Think back. Someone gossiped to you and says they’re just “keeping it real.” If you’re me, what I immediately do is take into consideration the whole pattern of the gossipers behavior.
Again, what I’ve discovered is if every time you speak to someone they manage to interject someone else’s name into the conversation, chances are, there’s an agenda there and ultimately they’re looking to influence me their opinion. Social studies have also proven people often bond over a common “enemy.” Common enemies are often created by what? You guessed it -divisive gossip. Again, there are many layers to the cancerous actions behind gossip. Nevertheless, when being brought gossip here are some things to consider/ask according to Phillip;
- “Why are you telling me this?”
- “What’s the difference between what you’re telling me and gossip?”
- “How is your telling me that thought, that complaint, that information going to help you and me love God and our brothers (sisters) better, and knit us closer together as a church in Christ’s love?”
Asking questions holds ALL of us accountable and helps BOTH parties to see gossip for what it is and to help work toward a resolution, rather than simply dishing unkind and often untrue information. Also, it’s important to dismantle the excuse behind the gossip. In my years of counseling, I’ve heard every excuse imaginable in an effort to justify gossip. Everything from “I’m keeping it one-hundred” to “…well, it’s the truth!” to “…that person needs to be exposed!” I’ve even heard people claiming, “God said…”
The whole cancer of it again, is unfortunate. Gossip is no respecter of high title, following or anointing. It can flow freely from even the most “spiritual elite” of us. What’s even more disheartening is that some, in an attempt to expose others, really only end up unmasking their own hearts, and insecurities. And although we could pause right here to exegete the scriptures and give the order of how God reveals, heals and delivers, I will say this. Let us always keep in mind God does everything in order. Correction speaks directly, in love and for the restoring of others.
Lastly, I want to speak to those who may have or currently experiencing some time of slander or misunderstanding. My word for you is simply to stay encouraged. The reality is, we ALL have or will face some type of misgivings at some point in life. But like James MacDonald says, “nothing helps us more through a season of injustice than time.” Trust, God will vindicate you in time. Just make sure that if there is something that needs to be corrected on your end, you take responsibility to do your part to correct it. Then leave God to do the rest. Live upright and trust God to fight for you.
See, in the end, rumors really don’t matter. And it doesn’t even matter how “credible” a gossiper may appear or how “sound” they may sound. When God is for you, not only will you stand, you’ll flourish. Remember, GOD has an amazing way of proving you right, without you ever having to say a word (Exodus 14:14.)
So, keep your head up! It may take a week. It may take a month. It may even take some years, but know this; God will always stay true to His word. Just continue to SINCERELY pray for those who speak ill of you. Really, just because they got the report wrong doesn’t mean it can’t be made right. Plus, God loves them just like He loves you and at the end of the day, it’s not HIS desire that ANYONE should perish. Pray God gives them a heart like His…that their words might follow.
So, that’s all. Just wanted to send of a word of encouragement to any who needed it. You will make it through the test and you will outlive it.
God’s got it.
Nikki Washington, The Chaste Life
Happy “Love Week” all!
Now, let me just preface this blog by saying I’m not generally a “fan” of “Hallmark Holidays.” However, I do understand and believe in the importance and necessity of celebrating love, as a whole. It’s with that in mind, that I offer this short, sweet and to the point blog.
Let’s talk about sex…
Just kidding…No, if you want to know about sex and God’s original intent for sex, you can pre-order and checkout my book, “The Pleasure Principle…” (shameless plug ) Now, if you’d like insight on all things love, this blog is for YOU!
I HIGHLY recommend checking out, “The Five Love Languages” by Gary Chapman. I read the book initially some years ago and recently picked it up again. I find it to be a timeless book and one filled with great insight on the many love languages as a whole.
From “Acts of Service” (my primary language) to “Words of Affirmation” and a couple of additional languages in between, there’s something for everyone to identify with, and not just for yourself, but so that you can identify the communication style of you mate, children and even friends.
So, before you run out and buy those roses. Before you cook that dinner. Take a little time to review the love language of the one you love. In doing so, not only may you save yourself some misdirected energy, you’ll discover the best way to express love to those you love. At the end of the day, that’s what it’s really all about. Celebrating the people in our lives, in the ways that matter to THEM most…
So, for those of you who decide to celebrate February 14th, consider this… Whether you choose to celebrate family, friends or your loved one, take a little time and thought into how they receive, and then allow His love to shine through you.
The Chaste Life