Tag Archives: #voice

I Cried When I Was Denied…

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I Cried When I Was Denied…

But I Never Died!

The morning coffee buzz from being drunk on too much caffeine, along with the clanging plates from the waitresses rushing to cater to every need, drowned out the sobering convulsions conveyed from the beaten and burned beloved.

From rejected to accepted!

Cigarette burns and bruises to any part of your body is considered torture and abusive!

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Somebody is always listening…

If truth be told, I prefer my morning brew in the comforts of my own home, preferably in bed, along with my morning devotional time spent at my Lord’s feet opening up my Bible.  The sounds from Mr. Owl chiming in with his whoot-whoots as the orchestra of frogs rib-bit out a beat or two in sync with the birds’ melody who excitedly embrace their new day is more than a welcomed sound.

Today was different, though!  Tuesdays we do a Bible study for the homeless beloveds that would like to know how to experience this great love affair trusting and waltzing with the Lord after being abused myself.  I am writing this Bible study called God’s Great Love Changes Everything specifically catered to our homeless! 

After only receiving a couple of RSVPs for tonight’s study and the constant complaints delivered from being cold due to the night’s rain, chocolate chip pancakes and hot coffee seemed to be the menu topic initiated in a community text message about where dinner would be.  This quickly ushered us into meeting at iHop for breakfast along with the Bible study in lieu of dinner. 

Dinners are a rare luxury for the homeless population and Blameless is one of the few organizations that offers hot dinners twice a week.  Usually only breakfast and sack lunches are offered at shelters and churches, so I knew there was a great need behind this need for a breakfast meeting.

Blameless Need Behind Need

Between the noise, we settled in tight as the girls started peeling off their damp scarves and jackets to get warm.  I hadn’t noticed the bruises and lacerations on one beloved until she removed her many layers hiding more than emotional turmoil.  Once the injuries were in full view, I knew we needed intervention to figure out the best protocol to approach this behavior. 

Homeless women tend to be associated with domestic violence encounters because they’re used to living under the fight and flight mentality as a form of protection, no matter how distorted that may appear.  Having a buddy for comfort and protection helps fend off other violent attacks against the homeless along with assurances that their few bags of possessions will still be nearby when they awaken.  But the cost is often great!

This precious beloved shared how she just wanted to be held and comforted because she didn’t end up getting to talk to her son, who had promised to call her over the weekend.  This mama totally understands the love our children cover us with and the rejection that might follow. 

She shared how much she loved her son, but that she was so wrapped up tight living under her own veil of shame and living in the wrong hood (battlefield of the mind), that she just decided to pity party her own disappointment.

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If you’ve ever lived under the demands of abuse, you find yourself living, or surviving, under the confines of mental anguish.  Instead of seeing this pain as a process (a wake-up call to get out), you find it accepting as a permanent residence because you become isolated due to shame with no one to help you get up or out. 

You cried when you were denied, but since you never died, you become quite familiar and comfortable in the most horrid conditions.  When you live in darkness, being out in the light is frightening and quite startling.  Initially…

I shared with the girls how my pain turned into power when I realized that facing this Goliath of fear walking through it scared as hell was the only way to unlock the shackles.  The key was that it would take others to help pick me up each time I fell.  No more isolation. 

Taking baby steps ended the life being subjected to the multitude of abusers while living a life loved and yes, helping others.  That meant acting and living like who God says we are; His works of art! 

We cannot allow this process, being homeless and/or abused, to become our permanent spot.  Engaging in pity parties, having the mindset of a victim and denier, announces the need to break free from the toxicity of this environment. 

Yes, living a life filled with an outpouring of love and peace will be awkward and quite uncomfortable at first, but it will offer us freedom, along with our own tear-stained pillows and soft embrace from the protection and warmth that our own cozy blankets offer. 

I am choosing to honor my Lord by honoring the beloveds He has placed in my life.  I know the Lord will show me how to love others the way in which He loves me so that our faith will grow stronger and deeper in our hearts as we learn to trust in Him.

Until next time…

Thank You For Being

A Beautiful You Events

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I’m A Party Just Waiting To Happen…

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I’m A Party Just Waiting To Happen!

All At Once I Came Alive…

Out of the shadows,

bound for the gallows

A dead man walking

till Love came calling.

Rise up!

Six feet under,

I thought it was over.

An answer to prayer,

the voice of a Savior…

Rise up!

All at once I came alive.

This beating heart, these open eyes.

The grave let go.

The darkness should have known,

You’re still rolling stones…”

 

I am my Beloved’s and He is more than mine!

My name is Tammy Ingram and I’m a party just waiting to happen!  Don’t believe me?  Come rejoice with me as we celebrate these truths through daily profession that are written in the Word of God about US (God’s chosen beloveds) and you’ll understand where my obnoxious optimism and joy comes from!

I’m a party just waiting to happen; filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy waiting to pop (1 Peter 1:8)!  Angels rejoice over me (Luke 15:10) as the demons flee in pure terror (James 4:7).  Ha!  Top that off, the Lord God Almighty Himself dances over me as He serenades me with His Love (Zephaniah 3:17).  You see, I am chosen by God (John 15:16) and this beloved not only has favor with man and understanding, but F-A-V-O-R with the Lord God Almighty (Luke 2:52).  Hello! 

I mean, I am called His Work of Art, His Masterpiece (Ephesians 2:10), after all.  Even before the creation of the world, I was planned and chosen (Ephesians 1:4).  I am always on my Lord’s mind and He thinks about me constantly (Psalms 139:17-18), which is probably why I’m considered the apple of His eye (Psalm 17:8). 

And no, God is N-O-T thinking about putting me in a straitjacket either! 

I lack no good thing (Psalm 34:10) and I was predestined for success by none other than the Lord God Almighty Himself (Romans 8:28-30).  I am placed and seated with God, a royal priesthood, chosen by God as His very own.  My value comes from being the KING’S daughter with royal blood running through my veins, part of His chosen generation, peculiar people we are (1 Peter 2:9), and NOT from my own achievements.

Meditating on these TRUTHS should be a part of our daily regimen and dance (worship).  Talk about a confidence builder, knowing where to run for safety and refuge and where to pick up and receive this treasure trove reminding us of our worth and value being God’s pursued child.  Speaking and prophesying God’s promises over our lives so we DO NOT BELIEVE the LIES of the enemy that so easily entangle us!

And as my fav Lisa Bevere said, “God has a way of taking every bad choice, every misstep and redeeming it, not just for our future, but for the benefit of others.”

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Look up, child!  God’s still rolling stones… 

You might start understanding where my joy comes from.  Stick around!  It won’t take long.  I can’t wait until you’re able to look into the mirror and see who God created: Beautiful You!

This is why I’ve decided to share and publish each week my commitment in reaching and teaching our amazing homeless beloveds this Bible study I’m writing called God’s Great Love Changes Everything!

Introducing the love of our Father through the magnificent works of the Holy Spirit’s transformation is simply believing and experiencing what the Bible says about us daily through application.  There’s so much love, contentment and healing to be experienced this side of heaven. 

Removing our veils of shame; acknowledging and believing who we were created to be is powerful; filled with joy, laughter and lots of celebratory dancing…

Celebrating Each Other

There’s no competition here.  This CEO considers the acronym CEO to mean Celebrating Each Other. 

I was once so tired trying to belong and fit in and be accepted anywhere and everywhere with whomever, I resolved to suicidal tendencies, even driving off a 350-foot cliff.  Nothing short of miraculous being alive today!  Trying to perform and conform to society’s standards just to be loved and accepted is exhausting, isn’t it?

This might help shed light on why I wrote Rejection Is Merely A Redirection last year.

We all just want to be loved, find where we fit in, you know, that place of belonging that says we’re enough just the way we are (beautiful enough, smart enough, sophisticated enough, loved enough), being seen and acknowledged that our lives do matter.  No judgment and/or condemnation here.  Blameless’ motto:  There is no shame in our game; Jesus is His Name!

Just ask my grown sons who are 26 and 33; they’ll agree, I’m one crazy Grammy Tammy!

Blameless Mama's Boys

Your life is a party waiting to happen!  We’re all in this together.  Nothing would make me happier than hearing you tap into these truths while living them out.  One blossoming, confident beloved!

If you follow us each week with your Bible, you’ll experience through laughter, sometimes even raw and candid vulnerability, transformation ushering in celebration as these truths become part of your own makeup.

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Until next time…

Thank You For Being…

Blameless A Beautiful You Event

Buday Strong, Russell B.

Blameless Buday Strong

The Voice of Russell B.

Buday Strong

Working Homeless

Please let me introduce you to Buday Strong!  Russell is Blameless and Forever Free’s latest nominee for the board of directors.  With his unprecedented devotion in being Blameless’ chef and server, along with always being willing to help wherever he can, (only missing one week in nine months, solely due to the founder’s insistence that he heal from his shoulder surgery), he’s not missed one day serving.  One of many reasons why he is being nominated as Blameless’ homeless advocate.

Russell is a working homeless beloved himself.  And the following is raw, intimate and vulnerable, words spoken from his heart that he wants us to understand.

In Russell’s words…

The reason his homelessness started was over petty money issues between siblings and his need to provide for his children in the Philippines; “money is the root of all evil.”  His American family insinuated that his Philippine family was using him.  Russell tried to explain without compromise.

Russell has constantly put his daughters, 8 and 10, at the front burner.  His daughter says her daddy is “Buday Strong.”

Russell’s last name is Buday and it ironically means “strong, strength.”

Russell has struggled with homelessness before, but he has now become isolated and withdrawn because he is tired of being labeled as “the scourged of the community.” 

This shame keeps homeless beloveds bound without hope believing, “We’re the low life of the community in their eyes; that we don’t deserve any kind of help.” 

He tearfully continues, “If you treat us like animals, we will be animals towards you.  I want to be treated like a human being.  I have feelings like you, believe it or not.  Your looks hurt!  You don’t have to say one word, but just look, and I know what you’re thinking.” 

That is why we oftentimes say the homeless live behind their veils of shame because of what society has projected at them,

“especially when you’re pushing a cart.”

By the way, Russell is the ONE throughout this year who has loyally served the homeless community through dedication and dependability.

A lady once brought tender tears to Russell’s heart because of her statement, “Some of the nicest people with the biggest hearts are those that live on the streets.”

Russell knows what it’s like to live as a homeless individual and what is needed.  He was homeless 22 years ago in Florida for a couple of years, and now he’s currently homeless and has been for the past eight, nine months, while being employed.

What the homeless need RIGHT NOW is love, dinner and shelter every night.  Not only does safety and nourishment for the heart, soul, body and mind aid in their sleeping which is disturbed already by being out in the elements along with the crime that runs rampant in the streets, but it calms and restores their soul in making better decisions.

Homelessness has broken Russell down.  Stripped down naked feeling exposed.  “You feel worthless and no matter what you do, you try to grasp onto something and you keep slipping.  You can’t get a good handle on or a foothold on to something and you just give up due to exhaustion.  We feel broken.” 

It’s Russell’s kids and faith in God that are making sure that Russell stays Buday Strong.  Because without him, his children will not survive because they depend on the resources he provides.

With tears rolling down his cheeks, Russell shares, “You don’t know how hard this is for me, doing this.  Whenever you’re alone for so long, you bottle everything up and you don’t want to open up.”  This is one step forward towards his healing.  He just wants peace in sharing his life; advocating for the homeless. 

Russell is someone whom the founder has noticed that will give the shirt off of his back, while being homeless and cold himself, and he shutters when he thinks about how his family won’t help.  Our division and strife in families is growing increasingly divided and somehow or another we’ve lost the love.

God’s Great Love Changes Everything!

And truth be told about Russell’s love for his own family, being faced with the possibility of having his toes amputated because of chronic health issues not being addressed, which is very heavy on his heart, fear is a bipolar rivalry between his worth and value, crushing his spirit, and paralyzing him in moving forward in taking care of himself.  Self vs. family equates homelessness while he continues to work.

In conclusion, Russell’s final plea is, “All I want is for people to know me and not turn a blind eye” just because he’s homeless and pushing a cart.  If you really want to know, don’t assume, ask him why he’s homeless.

Until next time…

How Does One Go From This To… Clearance Rack?

Blameless How Does One Go From This To...

How Does One Go From This To…

Clearance Rack?

When You’re Rejected, Returned, Refused & Recluse!

Rejected?  Returned?  Refused?  Now I’m going Recluse!  Or at least I want to.  I understand why so many tender hearts isolate and go at it alone.

Do you ever feel like the words and opinions of others portray a mental depiction that you thought was developed from your own insecurities being illuminated or hanging out in the wrong neighborhood again? 

Here you are, unbeknownst to you, an infamous motion picture star of a 3D finale.  You’re hanging on a clearance rack for all to see marked down.  Returned and Refused!  Examining you at every angle, nausea sets in due to the lingering stench of their dragon’s breath.  They’re that close.  It makes you want to projectile for many reasons. 

After their relentless review of every imperfection at the cost of each bad angle and exaggeration, they chuckle while announcing the attached “clearance” price tag regarding your worth and value is now stamped “zilch.”  Rejection at her finest hour!

  Infamous Star of Rejection

Being considered “detestable” and “unloved” and “infamous” is a torturous form of rejection to be labeled.  These labels come in many forms, but it’s mainly developed through the words and lies of hurt beloveds who are threatened or want attention, fear being exposed, or even jealously.  They keep these fuel lines of anger, gossip and deceit going by tarnishing our character to make themselves feel better. 

Used Goods on the Clearance Rack

Buy me, buy me, buy me!!!  Sad pleas coming from a Beloved whose Jesus already paid a huge price for.  My redemption cost much.  When our motives are pure and we walk our faith, the flaming arrows from the enemy Blameless Clearance Rack 3are relentless.  Our mouths may be a small member of the body, but its destructive power will do more damage than any tsunami or even a nuclear war could afflict (James 3:5).  Those natural disasters have no power over what the destruction of the tongue can do.  The enemy uses this powerful member to divide and destroy one another by pitting us against each other.  Our tongues speak and spread division and destruction.  How can we celebrate each other when all we’re doing is competing and comparing and criticizing everyone offensively?

Let me share, Beautiful Beloved, when I was hurting due to the lies and actions from others, my Lord assured me that He hears, hurts and hates those words being stamped “no good.”  Our loving Father highlights Proverbs 6:16-19 announcing, “There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to Him:  Haughty eyes (pride), a lying tongue (hello), hands that shed innocent blood (betrayal), a heart that devises wicked schemes (exaggeration of faults), feet that are quick to rush into evil (gossip mongers), a false witness who pours out lies (covering their assets), and a man who stirs up dissension among brothers (drama queen).”

After unleashing my Noah’s Flood into my bestie’s lap that nearly took her out due to the force of the download, did I again realize that women are ferociously catty and instead of Blameless CEOswanting to celebrate each other’s (CEOs) lives, they spend exhausting amounts of time criticizing each other while comparing each other all in the name of jealousy.  Here I’m trying to love and encourage them through support and they’re devising wicked schemes to take me down.  As much as it hurt, and trust me, it hurt and felt like hell unleashed on my heart similar to Edward Scissor Hands shredding it; that’s when the Lord reminded me, “Are you seeking the approval of man or me?”  

Praying for people who have slandered us and continue to spread lies is another form of persecution where the Lord wants us to walk through this darkness exhibiting and exposing His light through love.  This is where Tragedy Meets His Majesty revealing His magnetic glory. 

If only I can remember to count this friction as pure joy, it will strengthen me as I persevere and allow His magnetic glory to be clearly revealed (James 1:2).  The world first hated Jesus (John 15:18-25) and I am a part of His Army of Hope, so…

I’m being honest here, sometimes it is hard to pour out love when others’ venomous tongues are sneaking around to kill, steal and destroy.  The pain afflicted by a few was intense.  It was pain that I hadn’t recognized in quite a while and didn’t know what to do with the infection from the venomous bite.

Processing this pain requires intimacy with the Father to unleash His fruit.  The fruit of the Spirit clearly announces what’s going on in our hearts and behind these poker faces, but it breaks my heart how we’re hurting my Lord by our hardened hearts and lack of relationship with Him.  We leave our Bibles unopened.  We just hang out in the four walls of our deception. 

Purification of our hearts are needed when we’re not walking out what we say we believe.  Congregations are not holding tanks or places to perform to gain worldly power and media prestige.  This burden of Godly anger is something I am finding hard to keep restrained.

Those stings of rejection that were repeatedly gnashing at my body and penetrating through my armor made me feel like I was being set up to be hung out to dry.  Here I was living out what Proverbs 31:8-9 says about “Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute.  Speak up and judge fairly; defend the rights of the poor and needy” and people reacted by attacking my loved one and spread lies about his precious life.

But…  I give you permission to continue to poke, prod and hang me out to dry as you continue to squeeze the life of Jesus out of me because its splashing will get on you and effect you.  That’s a sprinkling of His Love that goes deep into your soul and its fragrance is nothing but pure sweetness.

I choose to bear witness to my Jesus and love you.  I choose to forgive you.  I see how this school of pain has developed perseverance and character in me.  You may have “intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives” through an explosion of pure magnetic glory (Genesis 50:20).  I rest my case!

Until next time…

Thank You For Being Beautiful You!

Blameless Tragedy Meets His Majesty (2)