Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Teen Indie Film, TO SAVE A LIFE

I've always loved movies but haven't been one to make many trips to the theater. All of that has been changing since 2008 and changed dramatically in 2009 (I made twelve trips and saw eleven movies last year..I had to walk out on one after seeing how it was). This year, I've already made three trips and seen four movies. All of this movie-going has made me think about a lot of things and I've refused, time and again, to see certain movies after I've read inappropriate things about them in the parent advisories.

"We're not thirteen," my friends say but I will stand by this and read parent advisories before I see a film because we have to watch what we allow into our thoughts. One embarrassing event led me to start this practice: I was seeing 21 in April 2008 with four young men and they made me feel uncomfortable with the way they reacted when a bar scene came up and a girl was not wearing as much as she should have been. Since then, I've vowed to myself to never let it happen again. Now, I am extremely selective with what I see..and sometimes people don't like me for it. It's not just about me, though. When a friend was going to take his six-year-old nephew to see Avatar, I told him that since it has profanity, I didn't think he should (besides what I'd read, the boy had gotten in trouble a couple of times in the past for using profanity so I saw it as too much of a negative influence and commentators on boundless were adamant about it not being for children).

In a country that is screaming, "Avatar," a new movie is starting a movement, although most people have not even heard of it yet. A few weeks ago, I came across this treasure while looking for movie times of A Christmas Carol. I looked this new movie up on imdb and parentpreviews (like I usually do) because it immediately was piquing my interest. After everything I found, I knew for certain that I wanted to see it and wrote down the movie title on my calendar for its January 22nd release date. What is this movie already, you ask??

Touching on many major issues that teenagers of today face and deal with, this movie shows a different kind of response and awakens people to how powerful their actions can be and how important their choices are as well as how everlasting God's love is for everyone.

Read this:
Teen Indie Film, TO SAVE A LIFE, Debuts With Impressive Numbers on Opening Weekend -- OCEANSIDE, Calif., Jan. 26 /PRNewswire/

Watch Free Webinar here

Myself, my younger brother and two friends were among the thousands of viewers who went to see To Save a Life the first day. In NYC, the theater closest to me that it was playing in was in Manhattan at AMC's Empire 25 so we made the trip. After many events, we missed the 4:20 showing I'd planned on...so we saw Legion (I don't recommend it but it has many biblical references) at the theater across the street until To Save a Life was playing again.

There have been countless stories and tweets to show the direct impact the movie has had on its viewers.

The movie website lists help for teens here and for adults who care about teens here.

Cool things you can do on the spread the word page of the movie site include customizing your Facebook pic as I did:

Click here to find the theater nearest to you that is playing it or
here to bring it to your community!!

As far as theater movies, I think the most buzz has been about Avatar (especially the fact that they beat out Titanic - by the same director, James Cameron - as the most commercially successful film of all time), Shaun Robinson reporting they made $1,858,866,889 worldwide. The best reviews of Avatar are about its artistic value. Now, I know for a fact that Avatar was an idea that the creators had to keep in a drawer for several years until they had the technology to produce it; after the work put into it, I'm glad it's artistic. I've heard that it's cultural and that people have cried. I've heard it was good but I also heard that it wasn't all that great...

I was seeing a negative trend of movies that were all rated R in the theater but the two I'd seen so far this year were offering a hope: Sherlock Holmes (PG-13) and The Blind Side (PG-13}.

The only other movie was The Princess and the Frog, which has a PG rating but is not appealing with the voodoo throughout. The two I saw weren't perfect, with violence and drinking in both as well as one scene of profanity in The Blind Side. Yet, they were still refreshing as compared to the others that I've refused to see!! Now, To Save a Life has truly restored a new hope and another movie that seems like it will be positive is Extraordinary Measures (out now). Letters to God (April 9) should be worth seeing as well and is also based on a true story, like The Blind Side and Extraordinary Measures.

So, whether it's a day to get out with your friends who you haven't seen in a while or just to see a great Christian film, think of To Save a Life...it'll inspire you!!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Know God

I do not know why anyone would want to live their life without developing a relationship with God, our loving Creator. I don’t know if I would even still be living on this earth if it weren’t for my relationship with God. If I actually made it to high school, I am sure I would have had a slew of problems that I did avoid just because I knew that God was with me. I still had so many difficulties and am only here to say this because of my relationship with God. I wouldn’t settle for just hearing what other people have to say about my God when I can get to know Him for myself. I suggest the same for everyone. Once you know God, your problems are just things that you pray to Him about, and you come through on top. We have hope … eternal hope. The Christian life experience is enlivening, bracing, stimulating, refreshing, invigorating, revitalizing, energizing, reviving, vitalizing, healthy, restorative, soothing, vigorous, dynamic, efficient, inspiring, moving, stirring, motivating, interesting, exciting, thought-provoking, uplifting, elevating, educational, heartening, fortifying, edifying, enriching, lively, wonderful, emotive, rousing, miraculous, atypical, phenomenal, and supernatural. You just have to decide to build that relationship with God. Pray to God to give you the desire to get to know Him better, and not just what He can do for us, but who He is, glory hallelujah!

John 1:12 says “To all who believed him, he gave the right to become children of God.” God loves you. God is love. God wants to bless you; everything you’ve got, you received because He gave it to you. No matter what you think you may have done, if He didn’t want you to have it, He wouldn’t let you get it. Take some time out of what you think is your life but which is really the life God gave you, to acknowledge Him and listen to what He has to say. It's been said that, "you are not a fool to give up what you cannot keep in order to gain what you cannot lose." How do you listen to what God has to say, you may be wondering. God speaks all of the time. If you don’t build a relationship, there will not be one.

“If you search for him with all your heart and soul, you will find him.”—Deuteronomy 4:29

“If you seek him, you will find him. But if you forsake him, he will reject you forever.”—1 Chronicles 28:9

“The LORD will stay with you as long as you stay with him! Whenever you seek him, you will find him. But if you abandon him, he will abandon you.”—2 Chronicles 15:2

“Those who know your name trust in you, O LORD, do not abandon those who search for you.”—Psalm 9:10

“Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.”—Proverbs 3:6

“I love all who love me. Those who search will surely find me.”—Proverbs 8:17

“If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.”—Jeremiah 29:13

“The LORD is good to those who depend on him, to those who search for him.”—Lamentations 3:25

“Plant the good seeds of righteousness, and you will harvest a crop of love. Plow up the hard ground of your hearts, for now is the time to seek the LORD, that he may come and shower righteousness upon you.”—Hosea 10:12

“Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.”—Matthew 7:7

“His purpose was for the nations to seek after God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him-though he is not far from any one of us.”—Acts 17:27

“It is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.”—Hebrews 11:6

Be encouraged and get to know our God. Read His Word. Go to church. Hear what people who do have a deeper relationship have to say. Those people are everywhere, if you look. Turn on the television to a preacher/teacher. Plenty of times, we find ourselves in crazy situations and wonder how we got there. We must also remember that sometimes we are placed in crazy situations to be the one who’s different so that it will change from being so crazy. It’s not all about avoiding the wrong paths; it’s definitely also about choosing the right paths. When you are close to God, you won’t just find yourself in those types of situations. Talk to Him. We can not forget that God knows us; even if you never take the time to know God, as you go about your day, He knows you.

“I cry out to God the Most High, to God who will fulfill his purpose for me.”—Psalm 57:2
“I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart.”—Jeremiah 1:5

“Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.”—Romans 12:2

“I once thought these things were valuable, but now I consider them worthless because of what Christ has done. Yes, everything else is worthless when compared to the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my LORD. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him.”—Philippians 3:7-9

“I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”—Philippians 3:13-14

"We're living our whole lives just to hear, "Well done."" --Tye Tribbett in Well Done.

Truth is, at the end of this age and this earth and this life and time, God will either say, "Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord" or "I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity." The choice is an everyday choice. He says, Choose life!! So, trust in the Lord and lay your burdens in His hands; follow His lead and build your relationship!!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Are we just friends?? Pulling a Ruth: Giving your relationship a nudge

The cry of the people is for love and unity, the union of marriage. Yet, the misunderstanding and lack of communication have made it so that the people have been blinded and alone, seeking love where it has long been dead.
The men don't want to take a risk; they blame the women for not wanting to be married. The women have a deep longing that has yet to be fulfilled because they see men who always go after the wrong kinds of relationships.
Boundless answers and Boundless's Candace Watters has written Get Married: What Women Can Do To Help It Happen. I encourage you to explore Boundless.org, for "...The only place where you can be safe from all the risks of love is Hell," -- Candace re-quotes C.S. Lewis in one of her interviews [[Are we just friends? and Pulling a Ruth: Giving your relationship a nudge]] with Family Life.

Women Praying Boldly

Follow the links!!
God bless all ways!!
Marry well!!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Free music download: "Lately" from Day of Fire


Celebrity Pt. Dos

You may notice a trend in Hollywood. It is of everybody following new religions. What's not new is something that usually concerns people more ((or simply gains more attention)) - faith-hopping!! I often notice people identifying with one thing one day and another thing on another day...to me, they must be seeking the Truth.
More often than not, they find it!!

Again, seek the Lord and love your neighbors. Everything you do should be seeking Him and loving. It is a biblical way to think and behave and makes life appear simpler.

Read Remembering Michael to conclude my message of Celebrity.

Christ is Intervention

No, don't ask me if I am Haitian. In Christ, we are one. It does not matter to me where my ancestors lived. I know nothing of them. The Bible speaks about nationality but it also delivers the message that when people need help, we have got to help each other...because, Haitian or not, we are Christian!!
It's a mistake to take for granted that somebody is always praying somewhere. You never know, in a situation, you may very well be the only one to pray. Yet, God hears your voice, so use it.
Seek the Lord. Love your neighbors. Call it a day.

Haiti earthquake: How to help - A list of charitable organizations active in the nation

Charity Navigator

**By texting HAITI to 90999, you can donate $10 to the Red Cross.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

How was your first decade of the century??

In response to So How Was Your Decade?

What a decade to GROW UP in, I thought on New Years Eve. Filled with hope and wonder, I entered the year 2000 at the age of ten! I wasn't a baby but I was not an adult. Once March came around, I turned eleven, making me, at present, almost 21!

We had a computer in the house but the internet was some phenomenon that I'd never seen and there were no such thing as everyday cell phone usage.

In late 2003, around the time I started high school, the house phone was turned off by my parents. Everybody in the house, except me and my younger brother, bought cell phones; so did everyone everywhere else..but I'm sure their house phone was still on Lol

TRL was a big part of my youth but it has since died. Thank God that Carson Daly is now healthy. Most of us have fond memories of the show to this very moment. I don't know why it started going downhill or why it had to DIE but the memories are good enough. It was good while it lasted. I just hope MTV continues to give their audience such platfoms to be heard. Speaking of health, the best boy band (lol) Backstreet Boys have managed to still be together after all this time, minus Kevin (well, he was the oldest) && A.J. is now healthy as well and has been for several years now!! God is good!! Brian's heart is healthy but he actually had a bout with the swine flu in '09. A great memory of 2000 was Conan O' Brien's skit on Late night with Conan O' Brien,"In the year two-thooouuusannnnddd." So, if you've never seen that, you should. Here's a new one, the year 3000!!

To cap off the pop culture section, I'd just like to remind, TRL gave us stuff like Tom Green's "My bum is on the wall, my bum is on the wall, my bum is on the swedish" as well as Britney Spears in her prime.

The year 2000 itself was a tremendous and terrible year. I experienced changes in family, the birth of another nephew (making it 3 nephews and 1 niece), the death of a friend, graduating elementary school, that time in a young girl's life when she's considered a woman, listened to radio disney like all the time and took random travels in the summer with my sister/roommate. Even so, I considered 2000 my favorite year, that is, until 2007 came along. 2007 held the new record after it came and went. From the people in my life, great relationships built, sense of freedom, happiness and independence, turning 18, graduating high school, being in a debutante ball (as an escort but a beautiful experience nonetheless), it was a good year.
Now, I consider this to be my favorite year.

I went through all of my teen years in a decade with no name LoL

Disaster struck here not long after the turn of the century, with the "terrorist attacks." Coverage of it was all that was on television for at least a month. I was just twelve; I sure felt it but I didn't get it. Driving by, my mother and I'd always thought, "It's dangerous how tall these buildings are. They build all of these skyscrapers but what if they came down?" It had.
Ms. Stephanie Irby, who went to church with my eldest sister and whose niece my mother babysat (my mother runs a daycare in the house) passed away in the catastrophe.

I'd been in there once. I went on a school trip in 3rd grade and we went to the top! It took so long to get to the top. I was scared, of the heights. What if somebody pushed somebody? Needless to say, I have had a few dreams/nigthmares about it since Lol but not in the past few years.
One Sunday, my family and I were going to church but somehow, we wound up in Central Park. I ate an ice cream bar. We were going to go to the Statue of Liberty but missed the last ferry out. My brothers and me took pictures in front of The World Trade Center. I wanted to go in again, this time with my family. Didn't happen.
My dad actually helped to rebuild one of the towers after the bombing in '93. Now, he's retired from pipefitting. He only does construction around the house. He still teaches Bible class, preaches and is a photographer, though.

My sister who I shared a room with is now married with a daughter who just turned 5.
On that note, I now have 3 nieces and 3 nephews from my 3 older sisters. My oldest nephew is now a sophomore in high school. He actually went to school with his uncle (my younger brother) for one year [last year] because my brother was a senior and my nephew was a freshman!
My mom hasn't changed (still doing childcare), except for in my eyes, as far as how I see her as a person.

I often wish I could go back to that time in my life - the year 2000 - and educate myself and encourage myself and not make the same mistakes. Some mistakes leave scars and it doesn't feel right moving on, even after you've taken all the lessons you could from the situation.
A lot of my dreams came true as well, though. I danced for about a year at a dance school in the community. I'd always wanted to dance. I did tap and modern and had a recital for tap. Flash forward to 2005, I was doing so much I enjoyed - running track, playing basktball and sitting in a room in highschool with other dancers, eating pizza while watching a tape of the talent show we'd just performed. I had a best friend, named Ashley. She's since gone to North Carolina for college and moved to Kentucky.

I don't even want to get into guys but they played a big part of the decade.

I found peace in the last decade...God's peace not the peace of the world. I've also seen the lowest of lows. All-in-all, I lost and refound myself in the last decade.
This decade is now about getting back on track to where God has always wanted me. He's faithful and has always been with me...but I was not always with Him, even though that hope and wonder I spoke of have never gone away.
Remembering myself dancing in the mirror and taking a picture last night when trying on the dress I bought for my 21st birthday, I'd say things are going well.
Again, what a decade to grow up in?! He got me through it!!


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