Tag Archives: African American

RECEIVE THE RICHES OF MY UNIVERSE: Self-Empowerment Call


Listen to our Saturday call here from Sept. 6, 2014.

GBGII page 24Now that we are dedicated to posting these, we will improve on the sound quality.

The following is an excerpt from the studied chapter; the book God is a Brown Girl Too can be purchased on Amazon:

“Each one of you is a unique seed, endowed with the power to attract what and who you need for your growth. each one of you has the power of choice in a universe abundant with divine ideas. You have the power to choose a consciousness of abundance, one  in which you can manifest the good that you desire . . .”

This power of choice liberates us from comparison.  We are not limited to a few divine expressions but to the unlimited good that the universe expresses as us. So we should not compare ourselves to others, loathing in fear and jealousy because we believe in lack.  We cannot worry about what others say or think, limiting ourselves in the marginalization and degradation of people who have not yet attained a spiritual vision.  We have to be committed to the absolute good of our own divine calling.

Listen.

Rev Cecilia Exlains God is a Brown Girl Too

 

Enjoy our other websites uplifting a consciousness of grace at http://www.spiritmuvmeditation.com (we are on over 700 days of a meditation challenge); http://www.spiritmuvvideo.com (we post videos for our Miracle Minute Meditation, as well as our Metaphysical Bible Journey); http://www.spiritmuvblog.com (where we continue to uplift our community of growth in consciousness); http://www.myrtletreepress.webs.com (our publishing website); and http://www.spiritmuv.com (our main website).

 

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WHAT YOU NEED TO LEARN TO UNLEARN – PART 1

Cecilia July 4 2012 HeadshotEach Saturday, we devote ourselves to reading and discussing God is a Brown Girl Too on our “Self-Empowerment Call” from 9:30 AM to 10:30 AM, at 567-314-3648, Pass Code 48201.

One of the things that we often discuss is what we have to un-learn.  The truth is that many of us have no idea why we believe what we do.  We do not know the history of our indoctrination nor do we question it.

The following is the first of several excerpts from papers that I have written about theology which serve as the foundation for God is a Brown Girl Too.   We were born as depraved sinners; we were taught to believe that we are powerless, even though Jesus Christ taught that the kingdom is in us; that the Holy Spirit is in us; that the Father is in us; and that He is in us.

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The following is an excerpt from  African American Spiritual Traditions,
which was written in May 2004.  It discusses why some people fail to believe that the power of God is within them.

THE SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCES BETWEEN EASTERN AND WESTERN ANCIENT UNDERSTANDINGS OF THE ROLES OF JESUS CHRIST AND THE HOLY SPIRIT

Although the formal division of the Church into separate Eastern (Greece and the Near East) and Western (Western Europe) churches occurred in 1054 in the Great Schism between Rome and Constantinople, there had been a growing division in the way these two churches or theologies understood the role of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit for hundreds of years.

On the one hand, the East practiced the same theology that  Christ gave to the Apostles and that the Apostles gave to the early church fathers.  The East was also influenced by the Egyptian desert fathers[1], who practiced rigid asceticism to combat their physical passion in order to enhance their Oneness with God.

A

Western churches, on the other hand, were largely influenced by Augustine of Hippo, and to a lesser extent, Tertullian.   A1

Augustine, who was born in Africa though said to be a Roman citizen, has been called one of the greatest theologians of Western Christianity.  Their Fourth Century writings had little influence in the East, largely because they were written in Latin as opposed to Greek.[2]    (See Wikipedia: The Free Encyclopedia, “Eastern Orthodoxy”, http://en.www.wikipedia.org )

Eastern theologians relied more on Greek philosophers, borrowing their language to explain Christian doctrine.  Significant differences between Western and Eastern ancient understandings of the roles of Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit are reflected in their understanding of (A) the “origin and procession of the Holy Spirit”, and (B) the “specific work of the Spirit in God’s plan of creation and salvation”.[3]

  1. The Origin and Procession of the Holy Spirit

The early Christian Church was troubled by disagreement over the nature and relationship of the Trinity.   The West saw the Holy Spirit as proceeding – and therefore originating — from both the Father and the Son, subordinate to neither.  The East saw the Holy Spirit as proceeding or originating from the Father alone.   According to the East, the Father alone brought forth the Holy Spirit; and the Son sent the Holy Spirit as the indwelling paraclete.

The Nicene Creed, established in 325 AD to conform Christian belief, is one of the key documents setting forth this fundamental difference in perception.  It, in part, sets forth:

“We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father . . .”

A-3The First Council of Constantinople adopted a revised version of the 325 AD creed in 381 AD, which was the last time that Catholic and Orthodox communions would agree on a Credo.  The phrase “and the Son”, which is the filioque in Latin, was added to the Nicene Creed at Synod of Toledo in Spain in 447 AD,[4] so that it read the Holy Spirit “who proceeds from the Father and the Son.”

West v East

Augustine of Hippo wrote that “the Holy Spirit is neither of the Father alone nor the Son but of both” – stressing their “unity.”  His view was if Spirit proceeded from both the Father and the Son,[5] then the work of the Holy Spirit collapsed into that of the Son.

But in John 15:26 (“when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me”), Jesus Christ  tells us that the Spirit proceeds from the Father – a scripture that the East constantly adduce in their criticism of the filioque clause of the West.

Father

The East follows the Johnanine doctrine closely, which distinguishes between the generation of the son (John 1:14 — and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth; John 3:16 —for God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son; and Luke 3:22 — and the Holy Spirit descended in bodily form like a dove upon Him, and a voice came from Heaven which said “You are my Beloved Son; in You I am well pleased” ) and the procession of the Spirit.

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“Athanasius and the Cappadocians [Gregory of Nyssa, his older brother St. Basil or Basil the Great, and Gregory of Nazianzus] emphasized the participation of all three hypostases in all divine activity as a consequence and condition of their unity of essence.”  Systematic Theology, at 271 (citations omitted).   The Apostle John saw the Holy Spirit as the “other advocate” or paraclete who the Father will send in the name of Jesus or whom Jesus will send after exaltation by the Father (John 16:7 – “if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart, I will send Him to you”).

John 16 7

Consistent with John, the Eastern view was that the Holy Spirit issued from God the Father, through Jesus the Christ, so that God-Jesus Christ-Holy Spirit are viewed as three divine and unique hypostases.  The  Spirit proceeded from the Father through the Son and was perfected in the Holy Spirit.  Gregory of Nyssa, the younger brother of St. Basil, explained this procession as “three torches burning”, with each transmitting fire to the next; the Son being used as an instrument of the Father.  St. Basil believed God created through the Son and perfected through the Holy Spirit.

2.  The Specific Work of the Spirit in Creation and Salvation

The “original sin” was allegedly inherited at the creation of humanity from the Fall of Adam and Eve.  The West believes that after the Fall, humanity needed a savior to restore their right relationship with God.  Thus, Jesus Christ is the savior to restore humanity from sin. The East, however, believe that the “original sin” was not inherited but salvation is an ongoing process of improvement and healing for humanity  as a whole, all of which has been damaged or “tainted” by the Fall.

adam

Under early Western theological thought, the only way for a wretched and depraved humanity to receive the salvation of the Holy Spirit from the sin that was its so-called birth right was through the church.  To the West, only the church and the Bishop had the ability to dispense the gifts of the Holy Spirit.  Ignatius, the Bishop of Antioch even wrote in one of his famous letters that “You should all follow the Bishop as Jesus did the Father.”    There was no individual anointing by the Holy Spirit as that could lead to heresy and confusion.  The West wanted full control; so there was only the anointing of the church.  In other words, to get the Holy Ghost, you had to go to church.  To speak in tongues, you had to go to church.  To receive the gift of prophecy, you had to be in church.

Eastern theologians, however, viewed spirituality as an individual experience.  This was likely inspired by the Egyptian desert fathers’ practice of rigid asceticism and control over themselves as individuals.  For example,  Gregory of Nazianzen, one of the Cappadocian Fathers, was concerned that the Holy Spirit not be suppressed.  Similarly, Gregory of Nyssa believed that our experience of the Holy Spirit is based, in part, on our Free Will to move from “Glory to Glory” and that the Kingdom of God is within us.  Macarius said that no part of the soul is covered with darkness; all of the soul is covered in spiritual light.

In the East, Gregory, Chrysostom and Macarius espoused the general view that we were made in the image of God.  The so-called original sin was just a taint.  Moreover, it was the result of humanity’s ability to exercise its God-given free will.  Chrysostom believed that evil was not a part of human nature, even though we may have a tendency to exercise our will to do what appears pleasurable but may be evil.  Despite the fact that the Fall tarnished the image of God (a result of “moral negligence”), God’s purpose is to restore humans to their original pristine perfection.  Athanasius described this concept of theosis:  “The Son of God became man that we night become God.” 

John Wesley said that “no man sins because he has not grace, but because he does not use the grace which he hath.”  Spirit — under this Eastern perspective —  could not be confined to the church.  This is consistent with the way Spirit moved in the lives of the nineteenth century African American women.  The church was not receptive to them, but they still received the glory of God, the salvation of Jesus Christ, and the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Sin was always projected on to brown skinned women everywhere; they were condemned, ridiculed, raped, oppressed, ostracized, sexually exploited, physically abused, mentally tortured – and needed to understand the Truth, that they are glorious, beloved, sacred daughters of God, blessed by Her Love and Her Grace.  As Sojourner Truth said, God is an ocean of Love and we move in Him like Fish in the Sea.

Sojourner

The Western perception of the Holy Spirit  produced a negative anthropological stance.  If everyone was a depraved sinner, tarnished forever from the fall of Adam and Eve, then the black woman, one of the most despised creatures – by white men, white women and black men worldwide – would be at the very bottom of depravity and sin.  The irony of this is that Eve, the oldest bones found in Africa, said to be the mother of all civilization had to be black.  According to the Discovery Channel’s documentary on Eve, all people were born from her; their pigmentation changed over time.  Nevertheless, under the Western Church rigid view of sin, Eve and her children can never be fully saved from their sins, except through Jesus for which there is no perfect salvation.

Those who attend church based on the Western school of thought, perceive themselves as sinners, who can never be saved.  They call on Jesus as their Savior, but look to the hereafter as the only way to experience true happiness.

The East has a more positive anthropological stance.   If the Fall is perceived as merely a taint or “moral negligence”, a sin for which we were acquitted when Jesus the Christ died upon the cross and was resurrected, we can redeem ourselves with the aid of the Holy Spirit, by baptism and rebirth, by the teachings of Jesus the Christ, and by the grace of God Our Father.

In John 14:12, Jesus said “He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do.”   If we believe that we can attain the stature of the Christ, we can do so without the church, without the bishop, without the pastor, or the preacher, or the congregation of so-called saints.  Jesus Christ taught at the temple, but he did not worship at church.

Jesus said, in John 10:34-35, “it is not written in your law, I said, ye are Gods.”

Paul said “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you.”

A more positive theology opens up the depraved sinner’s consciousness to the realization that she is not depraved, nor a sinner, nor worthless – but the worthy mother of civilization and co-creator of all things.

She has a specific work to do to restore humanity’s divine image;  she is capable of unfolding her perfection;  salvation is hers.

(Part 2 will be added next week.  References are below. )

[1] These anchorites or hermits sometimes led a life of prayer deep in the desert, spending time in prayer and meditation while denying themselves of food and sleep (e.g., Anthony, eating a few crumbs every second day, while walled up in a fort; he received visitations from angels, demons, wild animals, and other apparitions).  Dorotheus lived 6o years in a cave, sleeping while sitting up.  Macarius stood upright through the entire period of Lent.  Syrian ascetics were known to place themselves in holes; one slept in a hollowed-out log full of thorns and stones.  Some took off all of their clothes and grazed on herbs and grass like animals.  The Syrian stylites spent their lives praying at the top of tall stone pillars (e.g., Simeon lived 40 years atop a 50 foot stone pillar).  Not all anchorites were men; many were women!  (Lange, Stuart, “Searching for Intimacy with the Desert Fathers”, Reality Magazine, Issue 40.)

[2] All branches of Eastern Orthodoxy trace a continuous apostolic succession back to the five early centers of Christianity: Rome, Jerusalem, Antioch, Alexandria, and Constantinople. The Western tradition is largely seen as Catholicism and Protestantism (e.g., the Roman Catholic Church).

[3] Quotes without citations are taken from Dr. Anne Rebecca Elliott’s dissertation, African American Women’s Understanding off the Spirit: Ancient Eastern Pneumatological Influences (1998).

[4] The dispute over the filioque clause and the manner of its adoption helped lead to the great schism 600 years later.

[5]  The “result”, however is “not in keeping with the witness of the scripture.”  Wolfhart Pannenberg, Systematic Theology  (1991),  at 317.  In fact, Western theology is now reaching a consensus that the filioque is “uncanonical” and the “Augustinian doctrine of the procession of the Spirit from the Father is an inappropriate formulation.”  Id. at 318 and n. 181.

EIGHT LESSONS FROM THE SILENCE

IMG_0135[1]In Sedona, so much was revealed that it will take several blogs to process it all.  Even after several more blogs, the process of understanding the blessings of Sedona will be ongoing.

Aligned

For example, one of the most important parts of the retreat is being silent.  We were silent every night from 10 PM to 6 AM, but on the fourth day, we went into more focused silence from 5 PM to 5 AM.  In the silence, it is easier to practice the presence because you can more easily leave the world around you.

auras

The first lesson that I learned in the silence was compassion.  I realized that the loudest noise I hear – the noise that I needed to silence – was my inner voice.  Take a moment and listen to your inner voice.  What are you telling yourself?

Bayliss seeing

My inner voice was filled with criticism and condemnation.  I had to silence my inner voice as well as my outer voice – to hear God.

Altars

The second lesson I learned in the silence was to look deeply into my own eyes and smile.  In the mirror, my whole face smiled with me.  Have you taken the time to see you and bless yourself with a smile?  I never would have taken the time to smile at myself if I were not silent.  Looking deeply into my eyes and smiling was like staring deeply into an opening in my soul.

face to face

The third lesson that I learned in the silence was to be moderate in all things.  Spirit made me promise not to deprive myself.  I can eat the blanched kale and oatmeal and fruit that we had for breakfast – with ground flaxseed.  But for me, I can also eat flesh in moderation, sugar in moderation, salt in moderation.   Moderation also requires that I in-take the colors of the universe: beets and oranges, strawberries  and radishes; sweet potatoes and tangerines; cucumbers and mangoes, and sweet potatoes and egg plant.  Whole foods shined through us fresh as a new aura of wholeness.

Gina

The fourth lesson that I learned in the silence was to stop judging.  Instead, I allow peace to fill my heart: a peace that washes away fear, a peace that washes away sadness, a peace that nourishes my soul.  In peace, I rest and am renewed – rising like an eagle, strong enough this time to fly higher.

FB bird in the cactus

The fifth lesson that I learned in the silence is how to see my husband more clearly.  I really saw him as who he was for the first time.  He was there in the silence too as he accompanies me on every retreat and for every service, presentation or workshop.  We have been in the silence several times before so we know to avoid each other’s eyes.  Our eyes would be conversation in and of themselves.  Instead I feel his anticipation of my needs, his desire to give, his patient attention to detail, his strength to my weakness, his husband to my wife, his light in my darkness.

Marlon Our Guide

The sixth lesson I learned in the silence is that I already hear the prayers of others – not loudly, but instinctively.  I already am part of the impetus to receive answers.  I already ride on the wings of grace with blessings and favor.  Miracles are already taking shape.

embraced by the sun

The seventh lesson I learned in the silence is how to see you.  I know you by your magnificence.  Your radiance transcends the mago womb of love.  You are as brilliant as dawn, dressed in new moons, wearing the victory of new seasons.  Each one of your ten toes and fingers wiggle in the rainbows of lasting promises.  Each one of your amazing stars curls through your hair and colors your skin endless shades and hues of brown.  I learn the importance of being present for you as much as I am present for me.

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The eighth lesson that I learned in the silence is that my dreams are already one with nature.  My dreams awaken in the desert even more eloquently than they do in the city.  In Sedona, my dreams ride the winds of gentle kisses and leap from the limbs of juniper trees, saying “you have arrived, you have entered a new realm, you are here.”

Healing Walks

In the silence, deep within the silence, I know that we are born of the same mother, fed by the same father, guided by the same holy spirit, led by the same Christ of many different names.  I know that our song will last forever because I can hear it.  It is a song bestowed on us by the ancients, a song of grace given to us by God, a song of power exuding from every cell of our being, a song of wholeness connecting us as one, a song of Genesis constantly creating, a song of vision beyond the world dimension.

Cecilia

In the silence, I hear a song of joy that never ever stops singing.

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NAMASTE,

The love in me embraces the love in you.

Rev. Cecilia B. Loving

STEP INTO YOUR GREATNESS


When you stand on the edge of pure possibility,
you can use your prayer as the impetus to fly.

***

alvin ailey
Alvin Ailey Collection

an excerpt from the book God is a Brown Girl Too, where God speaks as us to us, from the kingdom within . . .

Reading God is a Brown Girl Too

 

“I sing“Jesus loves me this I know” because it is Jesus whose teachings have taught many to step into their greatness. Jesus is the perfect manifestation of Spirit in creation.  Jesus is the divine idea of God fully expressed as humanity. There is nothing like the blood of Jesus.

Jesus TwoBut focus less on his crucifixion and more on his resurrection.

Jesus has never stopped reminding Brown Girls everywhere that you will do “even greater things” than him (John 14:12). Jesus Supper

Eat those words with as much joy as you would a trip to Red Lobster, and let them slither off your tongue like those hot cheese biscuits.”

 

Christ is not a person.

Jesus SixChrist is the salvation, the stature that Jesus attained to show you that God dwells in all humanity.

Paul said “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col. 1:27), teaching you that Spirit is your birthright.

I sing, “Jesus on the main line, tell ’em what you want.”

But Jesus does not merely teach you to ask for what you want.  He commands that you do so — commands that you be in the right consciousness to receive it. Jesus is teaching you to step into the kingdomJesus Te of God that is within you, and know that all else — every single detail of my good will be added to you (Matt. 6:31-33).

Jesus ThreeI sing “Yes, Jesus loves me, yes, Jesus loves me” because Jesus taught you that if you don’t have the good sense to ask in your own name, ask in his.  He said that he will serve as your proxy and your healer and your friend.

But he taught you these things so that eventually you would become wise enough to touch the hem of your own garment.

There is fish and bread for you to multiply.  There are oceans for you to walk.

There are dead among you who need to be raised.  There are stones that need to be redeemed from accusers.

elevenThere are wellsprings of living water to drink.  But I need you to stand up my daughter — in a  consciousness that realizes you have whatever it takes.  You will never be successful if you do not grasp the unlimited power that I am as you. I don’t care about your weave, your Gucci, your rock or the glitter of your rims — even your millions don’t  matter.

Only when you awaken to your true self do you step into your greatness.

It is important for everyone to study and know the truth — especially you.  Disregard those who believe that you have no right to God — for they want you to believe that you have no right to yourself. alvin ailey 4

No woman or girl should be oppressed because of those who misinterpret the truth to mean that God is male and therefore, only men are God.  I am inextricably part of each one of you in the same way that a breath is part of the wind.

flight 4You, too, are the energy of life.  There is no separation between all that I am and all that you are.  Paul was right when he said that you live, move and have your being in God.  You are my offspring  (Acts 17:28).

All of you who see me in Jesus should be aware that Jesus acknowledged me in you when he said  “I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you” (John 14:20).  Jesus said that the “kingdom of God is within you”  (Luke 17:21).

Jesus not only said I and the Father are One, he also said, “you are gods” (John 10:34).

This is called oneness.

This means that there is no separation between you and Spirit.

This means that your greatness is you waiting for you to express the Absolute Good that you are. alvin ailey 3flight

Feel me at the bottom of your feet.

I am stepping through divine vibrations that I am sending from the tip of your toes up your muscles and bones — through your veins and glands — to the top of your head.

alvin ailey 2I am always in your midst as your teacher, your companion and your guide.

I always direct you, move you, lead you, speak to you, create through you, act through you, dance through you, and sing through you.

I am always there, always here, always now.

 

THE IMPORTANCE OF MEDITATION, PART I

eye 24Meditation is the most important way to experience God.

The only way to silence our voices – both within and without – and connect with the divine everywhere present is to be still.  In the stillness, weHEALING 11 realize the presence of God expressing as us.

“Who are we,” you might ask, “to commune with the creator of heaven and earth?”  We are God’s image as wisdom and God’s likeness as love: an amazing creation of God expressing as us.

Each time we breathe, we are given a gift to perceive God in a new way.

Meditation is the silence that we breathe God in and the moment in which we know that we are God.

great 7We are one with the same creative consciousness that breathed as us the breath of life, endlessly expressing as one.

Without meditation, we forget we are more than the bodies that give shelter to Spirit.  We are more than the body  temples that dance in the soul.ownership 6

The Psalmist said the “meditation of my heart shall give understanding.” (Psalm 49:3)

Understanding does not merely come through endless expressions of source everywhere present, it comes from source itself.

We can do a holy dance and pray loudly all day, but until we surrender to the silence, we cannot hear God.

But when we meditate, we transcend the physical realm and reconnect with the great power that is always available to us.  God is here.  God is inside each pause.  God is on the back of dreams.

God is in the channel re-opened.  God is between the cracks of every prayer.  God is the incredible moment when we forget both words and thoughts.

Meditation is home no matter where we are.  Meditation is the open door where all that we have sought lies waiting.

GBGII 2012 BBBThe truth is that we don’t meditate enough.  We slow down long enough, and go within further enough, and get quiet long enough, and listen deeply enough,
and surrender well enough to participate in God’s meditation as us.ownership 12

Meditation aligns us with the spiritual energies that support our co-creative work of love, peace and liberty for all.

Perfect divine opportunity energizes us.  Perfect divine order guides us.  Perfect divine abundance blesses us.

Meditation is the place where perfect divine miracles await us.

WHAT IS “GOD IS A BROWN GIRL TOO”?

For our 100th blog, I decided to re-visit the genesis of God is a Brown Girl Too.  God is a Brown Girl Too is a spiritual movement that was born when I was in seminary and the Holy Spirit revealed to me that one aspect of my Rev Loving leading the sessioncalling was to uplift the divine nature of women and girls of color everywhere.  This movement is called God is a Brown Girl Too because it is not limited to Africa but to brown women and girls worldwide.  Why?  Because we have been marginalized, demonized and denigrated throughout history and need to reconstruct our understanding of Spirit as us – not as some old white man who could care less about us.  We need to recapture the beauty, grace and power of our divine birthright.

God as Mother, Father, Creator of us all is always present as us all, always loving, always continuing to express as us. 

Sabrina and KiaThe Brown Girl represents the daughter of all beginnings.  Genetic studies and fossil evidence show that humans in Africa, between 200,000 and 150,000 years ago.  Based on our knowledge to date, our foremothers left Africa between 125,000 and 60,000 years ago, and that over time these humans replaced earlier human populations such as Neanderthals.   And yet, because those who re-wrote history and science and religion left us obscured, worthless, shameful, or – at best – comely, we fail to realize who we really are: made in the image and likeness of the creator of all. 

God is a Brown Girl Too exercises the power that we all have to re-claim our legacy as God’s image and likeness for ourselves.

 Womanist Alice Walker understood the significance of Brown Girl-ology when she wrote The Color PurpleCelie is the downtrodden Spirit within,God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Retreat 037 who does not find her fullest expression in life until she finds out that God is not a man – but is everything, even the color purple!  Shug Avery sings, when you feel the truth and love what you feel, you have found God.  Understanding our Oneness with the heart and purpose of the Brown Girl, who merely sits in the shadows of scripture, dances on the edge of time, nonexistent or irrelevant to most – is a challenge worth pursuing because it is by seeing beyond her face-lessness, name-lessness and voice-lessness that we find ourselves.   Creating Outside the Box Three

People from all races, religions, nationalities, and cultures flock to hear the Brown Girl’s voice in The Color Purple on Broadway and to witness her story of realizing that God is within her and everyone else – not merely to be entertained but because there is a ministry in her God is a Brown Girl Too Prayermessage. 

 When I arrived at New York Theological Seminary, I met Drs. Delores Williams and Anne Elliott, in a course that I took on the Spiritual Traditions of Nineteenth Century African American Women.  These two womanist theologians taught me that theology is not just how the white man sees God – but how we each walk and talk with God; that African American women have a special relationship with Jesus;  that we are moved by the Holy Spirit in a particular way; that we fail to question the messages that we embrace as gospel – like the rape of the slave girl Hagar at the bidding of Sarah; that black women through time have defied death and slavery to bring the word of God; that we have a heritage which not only anoints us with salvation but also with hope. Spirit of the Living God is My Breath and My Heartbeat

Drs. Williams and Elliott laid part of the foundation for the beginning of this discourse with acknowledgement of how God expresses as me, along with my background in Unity. 

Pam and Lia Beautiful movementUnity is a nondenominational faith, which teaches that there is no separation between the human spirit and God: that in this eternal Oneness, the “I AM”, we are a living expression of God.Gathering for Morning Prayer Aboard the Ship  Some may find this heretical or blasphemous, but in 2 Corinthians 6:16, the Bible teaches us that “God hath said I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and will be their God.” In 1 Corinthians 3:16, Paul said “Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you.” He said that “we live and move, and have our being” in God  (Acts 17:28). We loved

DSC08154[1]In Romans 8:9, the biblical witness said “Ye are not the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you.” In John 10:34-35, Jesus said, “it is not written in your law, I said, ye are Gods.” In John 14:12, Jesus said “He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do.”  These scriptures and similar passages form the foundation for the church that Spirit formed through me: SPIRITMUV.  SPIRITMUV is the spiritual birthplace for God is a Brown Girl Too.

Yvonne and Paul

Like Unity, SPIRITMUV teaches that we have the same consciousness that Jesus Christ had, “Christ Consciousness.”  Therefore, it is imperative for us to seek and embrace the kingdom in our lives through our conscious connection with the Spirit of God: in every word that we speak, every vision that we have, every breath that we breathe, every inch of space that we take up.  God dwells within us and does not depart from us.  We are the DSC_0438temple of God and we live and move and have our being in God.  We are not only flesh but also Spirit; there is no separation between us and God.      GBGII 2012 BBB               

 In 1997, when I was recuperating from surgery, I began to write a collection of poetry called “Plain Brown Girl,” thinking not only about myself but about all black women, asking who is thereGBGII 2012 F to tend our wounds and comfort us when we are healing.  The Brown Girl spoke through me through centuries, reminding me of that she is the face of God.  She expressed herself as a Brown Girl partly because of the limitations of the use of the word “black” to embrace people who are not only the most beautiful deepest, darkest brown but are other endless shades of beautiful brown. God is love

Brown also embraces cultures that do not fall under the “black” rubric – many Asians, Hispanics and Latinos and Native Americans whose darker color is indigenous to their land but no different than all of the darker sisters who populate this world and have been marginalized and condemned as always less than

GBGII 2012 JDSC_0408Brown Girl-ology is the daughter of womanist theology, born to fashion a God from a past that was before history; courageous enough to create her own myths; inventive enough to question the founding fathers of a faith that is largely prejudiced and racist and sexist; daring enough to remember God as Mother, as well as Father; prophetic enough to celebrate Spirit as herself rather than as a God that does not embrace her image and likeness.  We embrace the Spirit in us through the power ofDSC_0447 community. 

To date, there are been five retreats: the Opening to Consciousness Retreat in 2009; the Awakening to Love Retreat in 2010; the Creating Outside the Box Retreat in 2011; the Tell a New Story Retreat in 2012; and the Hope of Glory Retreat in 2013 aboard the Carnival Glory Cruise Ship to Nova Scotia. In 2014, we will have the Reclaiming the Vortex Retreat in Sedona, Arizona.

God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Bonding in Faith

God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Retreat 074We are grateful for those of you who have joined us on these retreats as they cannot exist without you. 

We look forward to you joining us on future retreats.  We also invite you to celebrate yourself and become more aware of Spirit expressing as you by attending our Sunday God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Retreat 061Worth-Ship Services at the Unity Center of New York City, at 2:30 PM, at 213 West 58th Street, near Broadway. 

We meet in the Upper Room to meditate, pray, teach, sing, grow, listen, embrace, and uplift the divine within. 

Hope you can help keep our community strong by supporting the you in us.

Much love and many blessings on the path,

Reverend Cecilia Loving

 

CHRIST IN US, OUR HOPE OF GLORY

Carnival Glory

This past week, we went to Halifax, Nova Scotia on the Carnival Glory cruise ship to uplift Christ in us, our hope of Glory for our God is a Brown Girl Too retreat. 

God is a Brown Girl Too is a testament that we are more than the physical; we are also the shipSpirit.  Paul realized this when he said to the people of Colossae ” Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Colossians 1:27 NIV).  Jesus Christ says this differently in John 10:34 when he says “Is it not written in your Law, ‘I have said you are gods’?'” 

God is a Brown Girl Too, a book where God speaks to black women as themselves, says “when you know that I am you and you are me, you will begin to realize who God is.”

Oneness betterChrist in me is glory; Christ in me is power; Christ in me is commitment; Christ in me is love; Gathering for Morning Prayer Aboard the Ship Christ in me is energy that defies the appearances of limitations.

Last week, while we were embraced by the bosom of the ocean and lifted by the infinity of the sky, we remembered to breathe the sacred breath of oneness.  We celebrated God expressing as us.  We reinforced the truth that Spirit lives in us. 

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As our Master Teacher Jesus Christ taught us in John 14:20, one day “you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you.”I AM

Christ in me is transformation.  Christ in me is illumination.  Christ in me is demonstration.  Christ in me is co-creation.  Christ in me is determination.  Christ in me is celebration.  Christ in me is restoration of all my good returning swiftly to reward me.

On the Carnival Glory, we visited the Kingdom of God, united in the consciousness that God is everywhereSabrina and Kia present. 

We stop closing the doors to the divine and re-opened the absolute good that is everywhere present. 

We stopped worrying about we shall eat and what we shall where and we sought God first, fullyIn the womb of discourse internalizing what Jesus taught in Luke 17:21, when he says “nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is within you.” 

The kingdom of God is within us.Walking in the Spirit Lia and Pam

Christ in me is unlimited supply. 

Christ in me is divine ideas. 

Christ in me is amazing peace, and harmony, and commitment, and discipline, and accomplishment.

I AM beauty

We were not wary or apprehensive of Carnival’s recent press because we blessed every crack and crevice aboard the ship. 

We blessed the crew and the captain and every passenger who ever boardedRev Loving leading the session and will board the ship. 

We blessed the entire ocean and realized that our sacred circle was comprised of universes greater than we who we are in the flesh. 

We releasedNot only did we get a great price for our journey but we had a wonderful time and terrific service.  The Glory The ship and the city greatwas a floating paradise, another dimension, a divine vibration illuminating in the arms of God.

PatienceWe meditated in the Christ in us.  We prayed in the Christ in us.  We blessed the sacred waters as they restored our strength, our light, our love, and our vision. 

We were baptized in the holy communion of fellowship in Christ Consciousness.

I have no theology, I dance Pam and PamWe left our sins at the altar of deliverance. 

As Paul said in Romans 7:4-6, we “died to the law through the body of Christ, that [w]e might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God.  For when we were in the realm of the flesh, I am a Woman of High Faiththe sinful passions aroused by the law were at work in us, so that we bore fruit for death.  But now, by dying to what once bound us, we have been released from the law so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit.” 

We pray as oneWe released the sin of fear, the sin of remorse, the sin of lust, the sin of doubt, the sin of despair, the sin of hopelessness, the sin of ignorance – and we put on our Christ selves. 

We re-connected with who we are and remembered why we are here in the first place. 

As Paul teaches in Romans 8:9, we are not controlled by theWe gather Sabrina et al sin but by the Spirit because the Spirit of God lives in us.

We danced in the Spirit. 

Tai Chi Nan Clear

We sang in the Spirit. 

Holy Laughter Pam JonesWe walked in the Spirit. 

We meditated in the Spirit. 

We healed in the Spirit. 

We released in the Spirit.

 

We sharedWe washed in the Spirit. 

We spoke in the Spirit. 

We rested in the Spirit. 

We prayed in the Spirit.

We taught in the Spirit. 

We testified in the Spirit. 

I am shalomeWe spoke tongues in the Spirit. 

We prophesied in the Spirit. Nan and Bianca better

We remembered in the Spirit. 

We were born again in the Spirit.

I can do all things

We lived as 1 Corinthians 3:16 proclaims, when Paul says “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?” 

There are no excuses big enough, wide enough or powerful enough Lia and Shelia dancingto stand in the way of God blessing us. 

As Acts 17:28 says‘For in [God] we live and move and have our being.'”mother and daughter

Even though you may not have journeyed with us in the flesh, every time you prayed, every time you meditated, every time you affirmed the truth, you are there. 

The Psalmist says “be still and know that I AM God” (Psalm 46:10).

We loved

Jack Boland used to say “You are where you meet God.”

God is a Brown Girl Too says:

“Your power to create pushes you beyond the edge of what you as a human can do to the greatness of what I can do through you.  I am the co-creative force of every breath that you breathe and every bit of energy that youGod is love Move From the Love You Know expel. . . .[W]hen you trust fully and completely in me without all of your second-guessing, you stop limiting what you can do in the flesh and start creating through the energy that has summoned you to this existence. 

You become the “Joshua” in consciousness – the I AM that I AM, the full anointing of Spirit.  Only then will you cross over into the Promised Land.  Wings will take shape from your soul and deliver you beyond your imaginings – across the threshold of your fears.  Magic and miracles and divine openings in the universal fabric of Spirit will manifest.”

Christ in us is the Promised Land. 

Christ in us is the answer that we have been looking for. 

Pam, Marlon and Cecilia

Christ in us is the unlimited power that we desire. 

Christ in us is the love that we so desperately long for. 

Pam and Lia Beautiful movement

Yvonne and PaulChrist in us is the stream of unlimited good. 

Christ in us is the source of endless supply. 

Christ in us is our Hope of Glory.

So we continue to meet every Sunday as Spiritmuv, at the Unity Center of New York City, at 2:30 P.M., at 213 West 58th Street in Manhattan, in the upper room. nan, marlon and cecilia

Come gather where there are two or more reconnecting to the divine mind that we call Spirit. 

We continue to meditate daily, along with www.spiritmuvmeditation.com

We continue to pray daily and study the word. 

Marlon walkin on water

We will also continue to uplift the word as part of our Spiritual Fitness Radio Show on blogtalk radio, starting this month. 

We will continue to spread the word of God in every conceivable voice, medium, adventure, cruise and retreat –

freshly anointed with the realization that this is the work that God has called us to do.

Rev Loving listening to Spirit

Namaste, Reverend Loving

WALK IN YOUR LIGHT By Cecilia B. Loving

ownership 8Your light is your legacy. It is so inseparable from you that you are obligated to let it shine. In Matthew 5:14-15, Jesus said: “You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a candle and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men that they may see your good deeds.” You cannot pick and choose who will benefit from your light.

You must be generous enough to share it with everyone. How? By simply doing35 what I have called you to do – walk in your light, walk in your purpose, and walk in your calling. Do what you love to do, what you do best, what harms no one else – and the joy that you give will be beyond your comprehension. Sharing your gifts and talents has a viral effect that will flow through the universe and bless millions for ages to come.

What you don’t realize is that even after you make your transition from this life, your light will still shine so brightly that it will lead people everywhere. Paul told the Ephesians (5:8), to walk as children of Light. Walk in obedience to Spirit. Walk in the beauty of discipline. Walk in the power of faith.

Walk beyond the confines of your self-imposed limitations, so that I can shine through you. Walk as an unlimited expression of all that I AM. You cannot judge your gifts and talents. You 2cannot see the fullness and wholeness that you contribute to the Universe simply by being the best that you are. Don’t lose your way because of what other people say or do or think. You are uniquely you for a reason. The lack of support, criticism or condemnation by some of my other children is like the wind. It is as fleeting as a single breath.

Don’t be fooled by cowards and haters to be a second-rate you. You are more than a diva, you are the divine. Walk in the beauty of your light. Otherwise, you will never give me the life that you have promised me in the Spirit, and the Promised Land will always be a distant reality.

Your greatest achievements began as divine ideas that no one else believed in. Jesus said (Matthew 25:34), “Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the11 - Copy (2) kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world.” Come you who no longer care what others think. Come you who are no longer afraid to move forward into the greatness that you are. Come you who believe in the magnificence of Spirit. Come you who have brought oil for your lamp and are willing to let your light shine through.

Come all ye faithful. Come ye, O’ come ye to Bethlehem – that house of bread, that place of substance, that center of Truth. O’ come Beloved, from the far country, and behold the 25Christ within. O’ come Spiritual Rebirth, come with the Light of a new day. O’ come embrace the power that you were given, the true gift of transformation, the joyous deliverance that you can attain through a consciousness of Spirit.

You were called before your birth. The Buddhists ask “do you remember what your face looked like before your parents were born?” Jeremiah said before we were formed in the womb, God knew us. Before we were born, God set us apart (Jeremiah 1:4-6).

You may not remember exactly where you are going or know how you will get there, but I will lead the way. I will give you the voice and the vision and the victory that you need. I will part the Red Sea so that no one will deter you from your path.

As I told the Psalmist, “Do not touch my anointed ones; do my prophets no harm” (Psalm 105:15). Just stay on the path, as Denzel Washington said in The Book of Eli. Stay on the path70 of righteousness, regardless of evildoers. Return from the far country. Go on about my business. Don’t just get a glimpse of the Promised Land, but be in the right consciousness to enter it. Be a believer – not just in somebody else’s testimony, but know me for you. Shut up and listen to Spirit for yourself. Be liberated in the unlimited power of all that you are.

Walk the walk and talk the talk – with the sword of my power. Watch a thousand fall at your side and ten thousand fall at your right hand and nothing come near you (Psalm 91:7).

7 - Copy (2)This reminds me of the Israelites who were at the edge of the wilderness, when Moses blessed them as they journeyed into the Promised Land. They were not just standing on the bank of a river to cross. They were on the threshold of a new consciousness. They were not just leaving the wilderness because they had traveled a certain distance, or mapped out a particular strategy, or had served a certain amount of time. They were crossing over because they were ready.

The Promised Land is not a physical place. It is a place in consciousness that gives you spiritual food that feeds your mind, soul and heart, the unlimited feast of my Kingdom. It is a place where you will no longer be captive to the wilderness of your own negativity, grumbling, and strife.

It is a place where materialism and greed will no longer enslave you. But you cannot get there until you are ready.

The number forty in the Bible symbolizes preparation rather than a specific number. Forty years in the wilderness means as long as it takes to get ready.

You are ready when you realize that I AM always working with you for your greatest good. I will always feed you enough manna – enough spiritual food to sustain you.

great 7 You are ready when you stop worrying about what other100 people say or think. As Terrie Cole Whitaker says, What You Think About Me is None of My Business. You are ready when you are willing to make the sacrifices that need to be made to accomplish what you want. You are ready when you learn that I AM within.

You are ready when you can bless even the appearances of life – whether they are bad or good – because you realize that they are the motivation that you need.

You are ready when you understand that love is the spiritual law that supersedes all others.

Love does not judge but is unconditional.

Love has an all-encompassing heart that fulfills Karma with Grace.

You can accomplish anything with the power of love.

If you are worried or doubtful or in need, all you have to do is bless the situation with the power of love.

LOVELove is my energy in its most powerful form.

Love allows you to be compassionate toward everyone, even when they second-guess you, because you know that they are part of your blessing.

Even when others mean something for evil, I mean it for good (Genesis 50:20).

They serve as the catalyst that pushes you beyond your comfort zone and make you aim higher than you ever aimed before.

You cross over to the other side when you know that you are blessed with my anointing.

You never know how you are going to make it there.

But you can trust that I will put the right people on your path to push against your resistance and pull you across the threshold to something better and greater.101

You have spent enough time in the wilderness.

You are ready to do what I have called you to do – ready to walk in the newness of life,

and nothing and no one can stop you.

EXCERPT FROM GOD IS A BROWN GIRL TOO

100 Reasons Why You Should Celebrate God As Yourself

GBGII CoverIn the book GOD IS A BROWN GIRL TOO, I explain why we should listen to the divine within. It’s the first time God speaks to us as ourselves and not someone who we can’t relate to. I’ve been over these reasons for uplifting the God in you before, but Spirit tells me that it’s time to share them again. It doesn’t matter who you are — or what your sexual orientation is — or your race and ethnicity: the divine is celebrating you. We will continue to lift up this consciousness on our 2013 HOPE OF GLORY CRUISE, leaving from NYC on July 29 to sail to Nova Scotia. I hope you can join us. To get more information, contact Robert at (800) 619-1694 OR (71 8) 673-9003.

1. We are created in the image and likeness of God.
2. We live and move and have our being in God.
3. We are temples of the living God.
4. It is written in our laws that we are Gods.
5. We are the first and the last, the beginning and the end, the alpha and the omega.
6. If we, whose mother is older as Lucy’s bones, have become disembodied from spiritual Oneness, then so has all of her creation.
7. The Kingdom of God is neither here nor there, it is within us.
8. God is in the Messiah and the Messiah is in us and we are in the Messiah.
9. We ask and receive.
10. We seek and find.
11. We knock and the door is opened.
move 712. Spirit lives in us and breathes in us.
13. God’s infinite possibility is expressing as us.
14. We have a conscious connection with Spirit that goes before us to do the work that we are appointed to do.
15. We manifest the right people, who show up to help us when we need help.
16. Even when we can’t see the finish line, the road rises up to meet us, and shows us the way.
17. We make a way out of no way.
18. We speak truth to power.
19. The Lord is our Shepherd, there is nothing that we want.
20. We are the pure potential of God expressing as us.
21. We are children of God.
22. We are heirs to the throne.
23. We are answers to prayers.
24. We are responsible for our lives, moving from where we stand now to experience the best possible moment.
move 1625. We walk by faith and not by sight.
26. We do not fear the terror by night, nor the arrow that flies by day.
27. We are creation constantly re-inventing itself.
28. We are beauty in the souls of every beholder.
29. We are vision moving past pain.
30. Angels guard us in all our ways.
31. Tables are prepared for us in the presence of our enemies.
32. Manna falls from our heavens.
33. New stories re-tell our lives from new pages.
34. There is nothing that we cannot do.
35. We are the light of the world, a city upon the hill that cannot be hidden.
36. We are the steps, moving into the greatness that we are.
37. We are endless potential pulling dreams through infinite possibilities.
beauty eleven38. Divine Mind is always guiding us in perfect harmony, always praying us in loving grace.
39. We dance in the dawn of magical ideas, listen to the call of unharnessed love, welcome the realm of inexhaustible source.
40. We fly with the wings of faith.
41. We know the way, and we walk in it.
42. We dance with the hips of deliverance, push past the poison of doubt, rise above the fray of appearances, and give with a love that never, ever holds back.
43. We leave old wineskins and pour ourselves beyond the bottles, boxes and bags that can no longer contain us.
44. We stand on the shoulders of our ancestors, full of new hope
— finding its way beyond the whispers lost between clasped hands.
God is a Brown Girl Too 2010 Malesha's Dance45. We breathe the breath of God.
46. We are everywhere and always present.
47. We are the light of God radiating back as Herself.
48. We are the consciousness of Truth, speaking nothing but itself.
49. We are the fullness and completeness of all that our Mother-Father-God is.
50. We are daughters of all beginnings – always pure, always graceful, always dynamic, always blessed.
51. We are prophetic voices lifted from the dust of dreams deferred – culminating in divine love awakening.
52. We are not limited by flesh, but are glorified by Spirit.
53. We will do even greater works.
54. Who is God and what does She look like, if not us?
55. We are mountains high enough, rivers wide enough and valleys low enough; we are the center and the circumference.
56. We have not forgot the God who gave us birth.
57. We are as old as time and as young as those who have yet to born.
58. We are the pulse and the flavor — the talented and the wise: “How you doing?”
59. We are – our past, our present, our future, and our dreams.
60. They try to bury us, but our bones just keep rising up.
yoga 361. We are the greater wholeness — always seeking expression.
62. We are still.
63. We are endless motion, stretching forward, taking the limits off, and removing the boundaries.
64. We are the time before, the been has, the was then, the until now.
65. We are the breath-filled space, the light-filled hand, the love-filled heart, the joy-filled dance.
66. When everyone is busy looking for God, as something more extraordinary than themselves, they will miss us, even though we are here.
67. Just like “I AM that I AM,” we are that we are.
68. We are the healing balm, the burning bush, the living water.
69. We are the infinite flow of substance.
dream70. We are the wisdom of our highest self.
71. You live in our heart.
72. We do all things through the Spirit as us.
73. We run the race and don’t get weary.
74. We move mountains with our faith.
75. We can leap and the net appears.
76. We bring good tidings to the afflicted; we bind the broken-hearted; we proclaim liberty for the captives.
77. We are greater than what our humanness can even imagine.
78. We are the cup that never stops flowing.
79. We are Christian, Buddhist, Hindu, Moslem, Jew — all religions and none at all.
80. We are ancient wisdom and new thought.
81. We are all languages and none at all.
82. We are sanctified, saved, and serene — singing our own sweet song of freedom.
83. We envision past appearances, dream unlimited possibilities, and recreate ourselves.
84. We grow from the consciousness that we create.

85. We surrender all.
86. We stand at the edge of always, in a new season of victory,
a sacred truth that just keeps directing us back to the vortex of our own power.
a balck woman praying87. We are the sweetness in all fragrance.
88. We are the interpretation of all dreams.
89. We are the rhythm underlying all motion.
90. We are the glory in all hallelujahs.
91. We are the wave in every ocean.
92. We are the boldness in all courage.
93. Nothing and no one can contain us.
94. God’s face could be no more beautiful.
95. Our power is not the devil; it’s not Satan; our power is the God in us.
96. The God in us prays and moves her feet.
97. The God in us knows that all things come together for our greatest good.
98. The God in us knows that we are worthy.
99. The God in us allows us to leap — knowing that the net will appear.
100. The God in us is our constant victory — even before the race is ever won.

Rev Cecilia 7

 

Namaste, Reverend Cecilia Loving
Pastor, SPIRITMUV (www.spiritmuv.com )
(All of the materials in God is a Brown Girl Too® email messages are copyrighted by and may not be used without the written permission of Cecilia Loving. )
JOIN US FOR PART II OF OUR 10-PART PROSPERITY 2013 SERIES at the Unity Center of NYC at 2:30 PM, located at 213 West 58th Street in NYC.