Lessons To Live By: Part One (Turning 40!)

I like the idea that life begins at 40! Yes, I am hoping that every grey hair and wrinkle that forms from this point onwards will be a sign of my growing depths of maturity and wisdom.😜

I am drinking to the next forty years ahead, but before I take another sip of my favorite Sangria cocktail, let me reflect on some of the life lessons I am taking along with me into the journey ahead. Here are the first 10 in no particular order.

Hello Fabulous Forty

Lesson #1

There is only one King of your heart. He holds and defines your worth and value. No one else can. So move swiftly along past the temptation to open that door marked “what people think of me”.

Lesson #2

Lead a simple and quiet life, minding your own business and practicing contentment.

Lesson #3

Pursue the company of God in every area of your life. He is your glory and the lifter of your head.

Lesson #4

Peacemakers who do not compromise on the truth are courageous world changers. Be a peacemaker!

Lesson #5

Listen first. Love Always.  Know when you need to walk away.

Lesson #6

Forgiveness keeps you light as a feather, so that the weight of pain does not stop your heart from flying, and your feet from dancing.

Lesson #7

Preserve how you see your husband. Never loose the respect you have for him. It is the pulse of your love and your marriage.

Lesson #8

Don’t build your life on the scaffolding of good ideas and perfect formulas. Live by faith and not by sight. Your life will not be patterned after anyone else’s. You are loved, so be brave to live like you have everything you need for life and godliness.

Lesson #9

Your knees may go weak as your cross over the bridges of life, but that is not a sign to turn back. Find the beauty, even in the midst of fear.

Lesson #10

Family is a legacy worth building. Children are worth investing in. Never trade the hidden joys of parenting, for the empty things money can buy.

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Who is shaping your space?

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I had  a wonderful conversation with a friend the other day about the spaces that we as women dwell in. Would you agree that women have a unique ability to bring change in an atmosphere, carrying life and beauty wherever we are?

I know the idea of feminine qualities can be so controversial in our modern age, but I still believe that no one carries beauty, comfort, grace and life like women do. I fear we have exchanged these for mere exterior counterfeits while on the inside we battle to be all we know we are meant to be.

If you are like me, you have felt like there are some spaces in your life, whether at work, at home, emotionally or spiritually where all you see is emptiness or you feel like you are tripping over so much “stuff” on the inside and there is so much clutter and noise that the notion of bringing life, beauty and pure “Oomph” is completely non-existent.

Here is my question to myself and to you:

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Stay with me here…..

Think about your life like an actual space.

Picture your life as a space, with boundaries and unique traits. Like a house with different rooms each representing an area of your life.

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Or how about a garden. In some areas of your life it may feel lush and green, while in other spaces, you feel empty and it’s pretty dark when no one is looking.

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Whatever space you find yourself in, I want to encourage you by directing you to someone who is pretty awesome at transforming spaces.

Think about creation. This is one of my favorite parts of the Bible. We are introduced to God the Creator. The earth is described as dark and void. BUT! The Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the deep. God then speaks His word into that dark, empty space and said “ Let there be light “ Gen 1.

And guess what?

Lo and Behold! There was light!

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Everything changes from that point. The earth takes a new form and has light, life, beauty and breath. It becomes an expression of the character and design of God. All by the breath of His Word.

Think about Jesus stepping into the finite space that earth is though. He came close and brought who He was into our earth space, so that every one who decides to take a step of faith into the expansive, abundant life that is only found in Him, will be shaped anew. And where He is there is life and freedom and beauty and all that is good.

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So Let’s bring this home to ourselves, ladies. Who has been shaping the space within you? Personally, there have been spaces in my life where there has been darkness from my sinful and selfish choices. Combine this with the stuff that happens to your heart when people walk away who should have stayed; and mix in some disappointment, disapproval and discouragement; and you pretty much end up with a big gaping hole that must be filled.

This was me! I say was because to a large extent, God has shown up in my life and is transforming the space within. But I know for sure I have not arrived and I have to step daily into his expansive, never-ending grace. I totally suck apart from Him. And when I do not spend time surrounding my space with His words and His breath, am afraid there is very little of changing any atmosphere (the air, the mood, the quality of life around my space).  Apart from Him, I can do nothing. It’s as simple as that!

So think about! Who is shaping your space? Who is shaping you? Isn’t it time for someone new?

 

Trust is a beautiful place!

 

Trust is a beautiful place
Trust is a beautiful space meant to become home

I have felt it’s touch in the mornings
and the strength of its embrace at night
when the doubts have raged their troubled waters
and memories provoke it’s innocence

Trust stands firm, pure, and unshaken
not faintly deterred by my wandering eyes
nor driven away by my unbelief.
But as a patient and loving mother
Trust’s open arms remain
Ever present, ever waiting,
ever trusting that the day will finally come
when I will finally return home

Trust is my new home and it is a beautiful and spacious place.


Simple by Clarinda

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© Clarinda Sishi

 

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A Spacious Place in 2018!

Last year ended with my heart breathing lighter! Much lighter! So many things had to simply go last year! And the King of my heart navigated me through it all. After all He is the One who came to extract me out of that painful scenes that have played over and over again in my mind. He has been singing over me and surrounding me. He is the One who calls me “daughter of delight”, and the One who creates the space for me to live and move and have my being.

I realized  that the unfolding story of my life begins and ends with one thing: beholding the One who has loved me and known me from before I was born. My story is found in Him and He holds everything together by the power of His word. So my heart is at rest. My heart is lighter because He is the one who carries me. My heart is lighter because it is free!

So, Hello 2018! What has the Father planned for this year! What are His thoughts concerning you and me? What are the words He is speaking over us?

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Spacious!

This is a word on my heart and a prayer I am praying!

spa·cious (spā′shəs) – Dictionary adj.

1. Having enough or abundant space or room; large in area or extent.
2.  Large in area, range and scope!

Spacious makes me think of a wide open sphere of living without barriers, and constrains, without boxes, without the unnecessary, uncluttered, free, with movement, full yet light. Unburdened. Life in abundance. A Life widened by faith.

“LORD, my heart is not proud, nor my eyes haughty; Nor do I involve myself in great matters, Or in things too difficult for me. Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul; Like a weaned child [resting] with his mother, My soul is like a weaned child within me [composed and freed from discontent]. O (My dear one!), hope in the LORD From this time forth and forever.”
‭‭          PSALM‬ ‭131:1-3‬ ‭AMP‬‬

Spacious is the immeasurable grace and goodness of God stretching out wide and deep into my life and yours.! This is what I am leaning into for this year. What is your one word for the year? What are you hopes and prayers? Do you have the courage to write it down or whisper it? Go ahead and do so! One word can light up your year!

Welcome 2018!

Spacious

 

My EP Album Release – The Why

” Just get on with!”
” Stop taking yourself so seriously!”
“Stop Hiding!
“Give what you’ve got!”
” You don’t have to be perfect! “

These words kept me awake at night.
And then one day……..with the resolve to steward every area of my life well, I knew it was time.  Distraction, Discouragement and the fear of Disapproval would no longer shove the melodies back inside the comfort of my keyboard and the four walls of my living room.

The songs borne from the places I have called home, and the life that defines me, would finally escape their boxes.  Before I had time to change my mind, I was in CapeTown, singing into a very patient microphone, with pictures of waterfalls streaming through my mind and a familiar warm hand gently nudging me on. I sang with so many memories on my heart.

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I remembered my childhood in Ghana, and the rich sounds of the places I have lived in, in Nigeria, South Africa and now the United States.  I remembered my complicated family story and the redemption  and beauty from those ashes. I remembered that my name is simply Clarinda, the story behind that name and the brightness of the new life I have in Christ. I remembered the people whose questions and pain have sent me to my knees. I remembered the restful,  simple spaces we are all invited to live from.  I remembered that every sound is a breathe that is alive and that that breathe has already been heard, pursued and loved by the One who formed it. I remembered and I sang!

This first EP Album,  is a collection of songs that weave a story about the pursuit  of the human heart, the joy and freedom of a brand new day and the sanity of simplicity in an ever shifting world. The African flavors in the music, together with the funky and soothing jazzy sounds were fun to produce with Sounds of the Nations Studios.  I hope through these songs I am inspiring, cultivating and stewarding the breath and the sounds I have been given in my “music life”, even as cultivate life within my marriage, my family, and the communities I am privileged to know and be a part of.  And it is my hope that you would be inspired to do the same.

http://itunes.apple.com/album/id1297422302