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Monday, November 28, 2011

Give Thanks

I want to thank you, Lord, for life and all that's in it. Thank you for the day and for the hour, and the minute. - Dr. Maya Angelou 

Sometimes you have to show people that they are appreciated... To let them know that what they are doing, their presence, input and support are all noticed...
I love writing down my thoughts and sharing them with my followers.  Table for One could not exist without you!  So for those of you who have read only one post... Those of you who have read every single entry... And everyone in between, I truly love and appreciate you for all of your support!
To my friends... Maria, Ashley A., Sheena, and last but not least Brandi I love you!!! I talked to all of you about Table for One when it was just an idea... and all of you told me to GO FOR IT!!! I'm super grateful for your support, honesty and encouragement because without you I would've never had the guts to do this!! So thanks!
Thanks to my family, who reads my blog weekly (even when you don't want to)… I'm grateful! To my mother who believes I am the best writer in the world... You are appreciated.
For my guest writers: Nakita, Michele and Brandi your input was much needed, so thanks a bunch for taking time out of your very busy schedules to write excellent posts for Table for One...
Make it a habit to tell people thank you. To express your appreciation, sincerely and without the expectation of anything in return. Truly appreciate those around you, and you’ll soon find many others around you. Truly appreciate life, and you’ll find that you have more of it. - Ralph Marston
With all my heart, Thank You

Friday, November 18, 2011

Single BLACK Female (Part 4)

Last, but not least Brandi S. Allen has given the table her take! I am really into this conversation and I hope you all are too! Strong, beautiful, God-fearing women! Single, engaged, married... WHATEVER! We have a voice and I am happy that we are able to voice it! Check her out!!

Soooooo, where do I begin???  There are several opinions of why there are so many single black women in the world, but none as controversial as the article this blog post is centered around…The Black Church: How Black Churches Keep African American Women Single and Lonely.  As I began reading this extremely generalizing and stereotypical article, I started feeling “some kinda way”.  Some statements I agree with, but most are simply angering.  I must admit, the author has a few valid points, but her delivery is offensive, clouded and very matter-of-fact. 

Deborrah Cooper blames “da passta”, for delivering GOD’S WORD to Black women and brainwashing them into waiting for their husbands.  She instructs black women to leave the church and seek a man elsewhere.  No woman should seek a man in church or anywhere else for that matter; rather, she should allow that man to seek her.  Clearly, this woman is not a churchgoer, has not visited the right churches or has not genuinely sought a relationship with God, such that, she wouldn’t steer Black women AWAY from their churches.  There are many other avenues for a single Black woman to explore, besides leaving their church because they haven’t found their husband.  Contrary to popular belief, there ARE good men, BLACK men, walking the streets of every city…They may not be in your church, but you don’t have to LEAVE your church for them to find you! 

As a HAPPILY married Black woman and mother, I was blessed to find my God-fearing, faith-driven husband on my college campus.  I wasn’t looking for him AT ALL…LOL!  God, literally, sat me in his chair at his desk…And the rest is HIStory.  Despite Deborrah Coopers statement “going to church is not going to make you more attractive and interesting to men”, my husband tells me repeatedly that he his happy he found a Proverbs 31 woman, a virtuous woman…Without my upbringing in a Black church and around strong Black women, I wouldn’t be the woman he was seeking.  Now, we are not what most would categorize as “religious”…We don’t LIVE in the church, condemn people to hell or parade around as if we ALL aren’t sinners on this Earth.  However, we do attend church fairly regularly and pray daily.  So, even though we didn’t meet in church, we have built a marriage around our faith.

Although I have PLENTY to say about this article and other articles the author has written, I will leave you all with this…After reading Cooper’s follow-up article, If You Didn’t ‘Get’ How The Black Church Keeps Black Women Single, my perspective is now slightly divided.  As I stated previously, I do agree with a few points she made.  For instance, she does bring to light the jaded views of SOME women in church, yet she is wrong in her approach to place all Black women who attend Black churches into one pool.  Also, as there are some Black male pastors who have the antiquated “know your role” attitude towards women, there are many others who graciously allow women into their pulpit and numerous women who HEAD the pulpit!  To gain a broader, clearer and more concise understanding of Deborrah Cooper’s point-of-view, please read her follow-up article and let us know your thoughts.

Single Black Women, know and love yourself, so others may love you too…Enjoy the single life inside and outside the church…Continue to worship God…And determine your OWN worth, so no man, woman, author or pastor can determine it for you.  

~Brandi S. Allen~

Friday, November 11, 2011

Single BLACK Female (Part 3)

We are still having the discussion on the this very opinionated article I read a few weeks ago. I feel that its important that strong Black women not only discuss these outrageous stereotypes this writer has attached to us, but to give our opinions validity.  Michele Mosley has given us her opinion and I'm sure you'll enjoy what she has to say.  By the way, feel free to join the discussion in the comments section! Thanks

I must say that after reading the article, “The Black Church: How Black Churches Keep African American Women Single and Lonely”, I was truly shocked by what I read. The author, who has clearly not been an active part of a black church, or the right black church is so misguided; what a shame! I am not just saying that because I was raised in church or because I met my fiancĂ© in church, but because during this article she states that we are taught by our pastors we should “seek a God-fearing man”, when in all actuality HE SHOULD SEEK US. In no way should a woman be looking for her husband and if she is, it’s probably why she’s attracting clownery! Men are men no matter where you go. Go to church to seek GOD, not a man!

I have to strongly disagree with her thought that the pastors of such churches are the reason women are still single. I have seen nothing but examples of loving, healthy and positive marriages in my church. In the instances where couples opted to get divorced for whatever reason, that’s between them and God. Yes my pastor would suggest counseling to help repair the circumstances, but the ultimate decision is theirs. I think that narrowing the men in church to four different types as she did is shallow and misleading. Yes there are some fools everywhere, including church, but we as women have to learn how to be selective in whom we CHOOSE, YES CHOOSE to be with. It is our choice ladies! We don’t have to be with every guy who shows an interest in us. It makes us as women seem desperate and needy. Learn to be selective!

Most women believe that when they meet a man in church he has it all together, when in all actuality a church is no different than a hospital; people come there to be healed and they’re still battling with their spirit and flesh, trying to be made whole. In no way does the right pastor insinuate that if you get a man in church he’s the man for you. STOP LOOKING FOR A MAN TO COMPLETE YOU. The Bible describes a good man as a man of valor, or courage, but these are the guys that are usually overlooked in church. Maybe we as women should pray for God to change our attractions. Do we not think there is a reason we are always ending up with the same type of guy? Rather we met him at the club, the gym or church, in 9 months we’re crying to our girlfriends again about how he broke our hearts. Why? Because we keep dating the same guy in different clothes; Timbs, jogging pants or a suit makes him no different! Don’t date outside the
church, date outside your type!

I am currently engaged and planning a wedding to the most beautiful guy inside and out. However, it took him 30 years to find me. I had to sit back and wait patiently and while it wasn't always easy, it was all worth it. We as women should take the time to learn and love us, but have fun while we’re waiting on the one for us. Learn that we can meet a man in church, the grocery store or the train station and still date, get married and have children while still having a relationship with God. Love you more so he can love you right and in the words of Carrie Bradshaw “The most exciting, challenging and significant relationship is the one you have with yourself. And if you can find someone to love the you you love, well that’s just fabulous.”

Friday, November 4, 2011

Single BLACK Female (Part 2)

As I mentioned previously I have asked some fellow writers to voice their opinion on the strongly opinionated article that I spoke of last week.

Here’s what Nakita Jackson had to say!

As a black woman and preacher’s kid I was thoroughly offended by every preconceived notion in this article. Truth be told, the only fact in the whole article was the video she was bashing…the rest was the ravings of one very bitter woman. I don’t have blind unwavering faith in black men or the black church, first of all that goes against the word of God. The word obviously states (had she bothered to open a bible) that you are to put your faith in no man and entity only God.

Psalms 146:3 - Put not your trust in princes, or in the son of man, in whom there is no help.

So it’s not the black woman sitting in church every Sunday that is being brainwashed and placated, it’s the ones reading this article based on no fact, but a person’s feelings and prejudices. She argues that men in the role of spiritual leaders are the ones brainwashing black women, so what about the thousands of women pastors preaching the same doctrine? Have they been brainwashed by some random man before them? What surprises me the most is her suggestion to leave your church and focus on your own needs.

So you want me to stop acknowledging God, stop serving and worshipping Him, and then steal His job? This is ridiculous, because focusing on my needs means that I no longer trust my God to do what he clearly promises He would…

Philippians 4:19 - And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.

Or maybe I should start attending a Caucasian church because obviously they’re preaching something different (a scary thought) and all of the black women in their churches are clearly married! Smh…

I would advise Ms. Deborrah to take an introspective look at herself… I am not quite sure where her bitterness with the church lies, but she needs to heal in more ways than one! Black women are not single and lonely because of black churches. First and foremost loneliness is a state of mind; I am single but never alone. Secondly I know she advocates complete self-absorption and selfishness but being single is not a bad thing. It gives you time to focus on yourself and God, as well as prepare yourself for marriage, which requires everything but self-absorption and selfishness.

 If you take her advice when God does send your husband you will be too self-absorbed to notice or minister to his needs. I’ll be praying for you Ms. Deborrah I think this is just the outward manifestation of something deeper and the God you’re bashing is the only one who can heal you and make you whole.

~ Nakita Jackson (A God loving BLACK WOMAN)