Have You Even Asked?

Has God ever had to tap you on the shoulder? I imagine the conversation going something like this.

God taps my shoulder. “Um.. excuse me.”

I turn around. “Yes, Lord? Is something wrong?”

God raises his brow. The look alone says, “As if you don’t know.”

“What did I do?” I ask while my mind runs through the day’s events trying to figure out what caused God to call me out.

“I have one question,” God announces.

“Okay.” I hold my breath and wait for the question that’ll no doubt change my life since…you know… it’s coming from God.

“How long are we going to do this your way?”

I understood that this question, like the, “Who do you think you’re talking to?” question I ask my children, was rhetorical. So, I didn’t. I did, however, allow His question to seep through my pores until His words consumed me. My silence left a vacancy, which God filled with more words of wisdom.

“Every day you sit in front of your computer and type. You take phone calls from clients or potential clients. You advertise on social media about your books. You take more calls. You do all of this, but not once did you ever ask me if I had anything planned for you today. You never asked what I wanted you to focus on today? I don’t recall a morning before your workday began, that you consulted with me about My agenda for your day. Did you forget that I’m the one who knows the plans for you? What made you think you could be successful without the blueprint?” He holds up a scroll and allows it to unfold.

It rolls way past my line of vision.

“Do you know what this is?” He points to the scroll.

I shake my head because words are now too difficult to form.

“This is everything I’d planned for your life. From the moment you were conceived until you exhale your very last breath.”

My eyes widen and an overwhelming sense of curiosity embraces me. I stretch my neck, but it’s no use. I can’t make out anything written on the scroll.

“I’m the author and creator. These customized plans are written in a language that only I can understand.”

Confusion replaces my curiosity. “Then how will I know?”

He smiles. “I’m also the interpreter.” He paused, then added, “You simply ask.”




Open the Box and Release the Gift

Fifteen years ago, I sat across from a principal who was interviewing me. He asked, “Where do you see yourself 15 years from now?” I didn’t hesitate at all when I answered that question. I knew the answer because it was the only one I had. I proudly stated, “I see myself right where I am today, in the classroom teaching.” That’s what I saw and that’s what I meant. I couldn’t see anything else for me other than what I saw growing up, so it made sense that that’s the life I would have too, right? WRONG!

Years later, something happened. I wish I could tell you exactly when it happened and what caused it to happen, but all I know is it happened and my life hasn’t been the same since. One day, the walls were removed and I was able to visualize a life for myself outside of the classroom. Maybe it was when I was promoted to Reading Coach. Maybe it was that move that showed me there’s more to my life than being in the classroom. It took me a while, but I soon discovered that the classroom was actually my clutch. It was my comfort zone. I wanted to stay there forever because that’s where I felt safe. The children didn’t judge or critique me. In their eyes, I knew everything. Whatever I gave that day was good enough for them, but once I stepped out I realized there was so much more I needed to learn, to do, to see, and experience, and I was ready for it all.

In 2009, I wrote my first novel, “Dirty Little Secrets.” It’s amazing how you start out doing one thing, and just when you think you finally know what God’s calling you to do, BAM something happens that takes you on a whole new turn. When I was in the classroom I thought, This is it. This is what I’m supposed to do for the rest of my life. Then I published Dirty Little Secrets and I thought, No the classroom wasn’t it. This is it. Writing novels is what I’m supposed to do for the rest of my life. So, at that moment I decided this is what I want to do. I want to spend my time writing and selling novels.

Well, that was all good for a while, but then something happened. God gave me the idea and the name to start this blog. Initially, if you ever feel like scrolling back to the beginning, you’ll see that it started off with general, motivational posts that then turned into a blog series. Secrets From the Bayou was supposed to be a weekly blog series. I thought I was supposed to write and publish these weekly posts and something amazing would happen from them. When I thought something amazing, I was really thinking more like, I’d gain more readers AMAZING, not I’m filming based on my blog AMAZING!

Some days it still doesn’t feel real. I can’t even begin to describe the feeling I get seeing others acting out the words I’d once held in my head. Very few people get to see their words come to life and I don’t take that for granted at all. 

I thought this is it! I want to write and produce films for the rest of my life. This is what I’m supposed to do, but then…. something happened again. I found myself coaching more and more people through writing their novels. I LOVED it! I love everything about teaching, motivating, and writing so I guess it made sense for me to love teaching writing. I invested in myself and signed up for a coaching program that would help start my own program. I had the teaching part down pat, Southern University and EBR Parish School System, prepared me for that part, but the business side was different. I needed help. I finally understood that if I wanted it, I had to be willing to sacrifice and pay the price. 

Today, I’m still filming, still writing, and now about to launch my coaching program. Throughout this journey I found myself doing the same thing I did all those years ago as I sat across from that principal. I was placing myself in a box. I thought novels was it, I thought filming was it, but then coaching came along and I realized I deserve to use all my skills. I’m not saying what’s it. I’m opening myself to whatever new adventure God brings my way. 

Where do I see myself in 15 years? Exactly where God needs me to be!


A Life Worth Living

There’s so much I could say about this lady… my friend… my writing partner… my Sissy! One week ago today, God held out his hand and she took hold and allowed Him to lead her back home. A place where she no longer has to suffer. She no longer has to worry about doctor visits or bad reports. She is free to live with her Master. The God who created her and the God she spent her life serving. If you know nothing else about Tanishia Pearson-Jones, you know that she was a faithful believer and there was nothing anyone could say that would cause her to doubt God’s love for her. When the pain increased, so did her faith.

I spoke to her the day after she’d taken the picture above. She said, “Sissy, I got my report and it doesn’t look good.” Before I could respond she continued. “The tumors are back and it’s inoperable. I was having a rough day, but I decided to go ahead with my photo shoot. My body was full of cancer, but I didn’t want to show it. I wanted people to see the God in me and the God in me don’t look like cancer.”

We hear people say all the time, “I’m so glad I don’t look like what I’ve BEEN through,” but it’s a lot different to say “I’m so glad I don’t look like what I’m GOING through.” The picture above is a true example of a child of God, who was deteremined not to look like the diagnosis she’d just received. She looked beautiful, flawless, peaceful, joyful… everything a child a God should look like. Tanishia was handed a death sentence. We all know that inoperable means there’s nothing more we can do to help you. How can someone who knows that death is a great possibility sooner than later, still get up, get dressed, pose in front of a camera and smile like nothing’s wrong? I know the answer to that million dollar question…GOD. 

You’d have to know God the way Tanishia knew God to be able to do that. The walk she walked, the trials she endured, the pain she suffered, wasn’t for the weak or the mild, it was only for the strong and I can tell you with great assurance that Tanishia Pearson-Jones was one of the strongest women I’d ever met. She was young, just turned 36 on October 19th, but she had an old soul. She reminded me so much of my grandmother who’d take in anyone in need. Tanishia gave birth to two children, but she was a mother to many. Someone posted that she made everyone feel as though they were her best friend and that’s so true. We’d only had a few conversations before she started calling me “sissy.” She knew that term would make me feel special like I played a major role in her life, I know she played a big role in mine. 


I believe there are two big lessons we can learn from Tanishia, way more than two actually, but for the sake of your time and the length of this blog, I’ll keep it at two:)

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1. Always trust God. No matter what. Trust His decisions and His timing. Trust that even when the answer is no, it’s still for your good.  As you can see from our inbox message, Tanishia made it clear she knew how to fight. She fought with prayer and the word of God. 

2.  Stop talking and start working. Tanishia worked hard at her house, in her church, in her community, and in the literary world. She was always doing something, but the one thing she really wanted was to write her own book. So many days we laughed about doing everything except what we should be doing…writing! She thought she had time. She was going to finish her book and start speaking about her journey. Those were her plans, but God’s plans were different. Thankfully, Tanishia did finish writing, and as she requested, Joyce and I will carry the torch to the finish line. You’ll get to read about her journey in her words. 


Tanishia sent this to me. We had plans. But so did God. 

James 4:14-15 

14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.    
15 For that ye ought to sayIf the Lord will*, we shall liveand do this, or that. 



We thought we had time. I’m sure you’re thinking the same thing too. The truth is,  as the scripture clearly points out, none of us know.

Do what you can do while you can do it. 


Tired of the Lies!

I’m tired of the lies I’ve been feeding myself all these years! “I don’t have time” “I don’t have the money” “I don’t know enough” “People are going to question my ability.” ALL LIES! At least some of them are lies. People may question my ability but WHO CARES? As long as I believe in me.

This summer has been a summer of transformation for me. I’ve stretched myself in my business and personal life to uncover the lies I’ve told myself. I’ve worked through most of them, and still working through some of them, to reveal the me that God designed me to be. The new me understands the importance of pushing past the excuses to get the results I desire.

Let’s face it, there’s always going to be a million reasons why we shouldn’t step into something new. I now know that there’s a logical explanation to our thinking.  I’ve learned that the brain is trained to keep us in a comfortable place. Once we try something new, or think about trying something new, the brain says “Hold up! What’s this new thing you’re trying to get me to do? Oh no! We don’t have time for that!” (In my brain speaking voice).

It’s up to us to recognize that the brain is simply doing it’s job to keep us safe and comfortable. The only problem is that growth doesn’t happen during comfort. We have to push ourselves until the brain starts to work with us instead of against us. Have you heard of people who once hated working out, but they kept doing it anyway? Before long they found that what they once dreaded they now crave. That’s how the brain works. It realize that this new thing isn’t so bad after all.

Now, it’s your job to let go of the excuses and get to work. Even if you don’t feel like it…do it anyway! Push past the mental lies until your brain and your body are working together to get you where you deserve to be!


The Biggest Mistake We Make in Life!



When I was in middle school my mother passed away from lymphoma  which is a group of blood cancers that develop in the lymphatic system. Three years after my mom’s death, I wrote a story called “The Day I’d Never Forget.” In this story I told about the day she passed away, a day I can still remember from beginning to end. Every little detail of that day is engraved in my mind, so telling the story was no problem. I simply wrote what I remembered, which was everything.

My teacher, Ms. Kim, read the story and was amazed at how well I was able to tell the story and how descriptive my writing was at the time. She said she felt as if she was right there with me hearing the news of my mother’s death. She told me how she cried because she felt my pain through my words. Ms. Kim urged me to submit my story to the Louisiana Young Author’s contest. I did and during that time and for many months after, Ms. Kim encouraged me to keep writing. She saw something in my writing that I really didn’t see for myself. I knew stringing words together to form sentences came with ease for me, but I definitely didn’t consider myself a writer per sa. Well, my story won first place in the state. I was so proud, but it wasn’t because I won, it was because others had read about my mom. For me, it was a way of keeping her memory alive.

Well, after I left Ms. Kim’s class and ventured on to the next grade, I had the honor and privilege of learning under Mrs. Gloria Davis. Ms. Davis had been teaching for many years, and coming from a very small school, I’d already heard all the horror stories of being in her class. I was so afraid that I’d asked to be placed in another class instead, but that request was rejected, and I thank God that it was. That was a lesson for me that I still live by to this day, “always judge a person based on your own experiences with them, not someone else’s.” Mrs. Davis turned out to be my favorite teacher. She knew English like I knew my name and she taught it to us well. When I’d write papers in her class, she constantly told me I should really consider journalism. Mrs. Davis also saw something that I didn’t see at the time. I was a writer.

I graduated from high school and went on to study Elementary Education at Southern University in Baton Rouge, La. Every English teacher I sat under encouraged me to keep writing. They all said I should really consider journalism, I should write for the school newspaper, they wanted me to perfect my craft, but I wanted to teach.

Little did I know that all my English teachers were right, but so was I. Writing is my gift, it is the tool that God has given me to use for His good, but so is teaching. I know this because of the list of parents who would request me as their child’s teacher. I was meant to teach and I was meant to write.

The biggest mistake we all make is missing the cues. We spend so much of our lives searching for something that’s been with us all along. Our purpose isn’t something we have to seek out. We just have to be open and listen to what others are saying about us. Don’t dismiss it as just something you like to do, perhaps that something is the reason God chose you.

My plea to you today is don’t waste time looking for something that you already possess. Take time to sit still, listen to the chatter of others, and I’m pretty sure you’ll be just like me, and realize your purpose has been there all along. You were just too distracted to see it.

I’d love to hear your story of how you discovered your purpose or if you feel you still don’t know, share that too. Tell me about yourself maybe we can figure this thing out together 🙂