I intent to LIVE life, not just exist. George Takei

Are you LIVING OR are you living?  If I were asked this question a few years ago, hell last year, I would have responded living.  Because I was busy working to pay debt, scrimping and saving, denying myself luxuries to stay within my budget.  Indeed, I was living but that was about to change, or so I thought.  In January 2022, with the exception of my student loan, I paid off ALL of my debt and thought it would afford me the opportunity to actually start LIVING.  Well, it didn’t!!  A few months later, my dentist gave me an estimate that required another financial obligation.  Frustrated, I began talking to GOD and realized that LIVING had nothing to do with money or finances, it has to do with our perspective.  I’ll ask again, are you LIVING OR are you living?  Now, I can respond confidently that I am LIVING!   So, for this week’s blog, let’s talk SHIP to determine whether we are LIVING OR living!!!

After paying off my debt, I began aggressively saving and rebuilding my finances in preparation for retirement and for a few months, it worked.  I increased my contributions to my 401k, retirement fund, and even had additional taxes taken out to prevent owing the IRS next year. I had a plan!!  But after the dental visit, the estimate for work needed, absolutely destroyed my savings plan.  On the long ride home from the visit, I started a conversation with GOD.  I inquired why it seemed like just when I get ahead, it seems as if there was always something pushing me back.   As I continued my conversation with GOD, the scripture Jeremiah 29:11, became a dominant reoccurring thought… “For I know the plans I have for you, DECLARES the Lord, plans to PROSPER you, and NOT to HARM you. Plans to GIVE you HOPE and a FUTURE.”  I’ve read this scripture at least a thousand times and love it but questioned if its words applied to me and began to pray.

It was June 9th, 2022, while on the drive home that GOD DECLARED and revealed HIS PLANS to PROSPER me.  HE told me to write cards-Christmas cards that would share the sentiments of the season- and ever since that day, that’s what I’ve done, I’ve written cards.  Even though I told GOD I didn’t know anything about starting a card business, HE guaranteed me that HIS PLANS would NOT fail or HARM me.  HE sent me a talented graphic designer as a partner that I’ve known for years and although he owns his own graphic design business and creates for companies, he had never explored his own creativity. HE sent me someone willing to learn together.   GOD assured me that HIS PLANS would GIVE me HOPE and a FUTURE and it did! On October 22, 2022, my partner and I launched our greeting card business called-nappyXpressionz to our family and friends.  

I’m blessed that GOD chose me to oversee nappyxpressionz and that HE gave me the right partner to do it with. I’m even more ecstatic that I listened to HIS PLANS. I’m no longer living because GOD’S PLAN has afforded me the opportunity to start LIVING.  Writing for nappyXpressionz gives me HOPE and offers me a FUTURE and through our cards, it gives us the ability to encourage and motivate others.  Some of our cards are serious, some cynical, some comical but ALL of them reinforce that life is NOT about just being “happy”, it’s about learning how to TRUST GOD and ourselves as we LIVE THROUGH life’s “happy” and “not so happy” moments.  So, if you want to STOP living ask GOD what HIS PLANS are for you, listen, and then start LIVING!!!

Be sure to check out our card line at nappyXpressionz.com

SHIP TALK: Are you LIVING OR are you living?

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