Special Guest Blogger

July 3, 2014

My Name is VIKtory


Vik Varwoo
sta·tis·tic sta'tistik
noun: statistic; plural noun: statistics
1. a fact or piece of data from a study of a large quantity of numerical data.
Statistics that I can check off my list:
Black - last time I had to check the box on an application, I checked African American. 
Female - all of my female anatomy is still intact.

Raised by a single mother - even though she married twice after she divorced my father.

SURVIVOR of molestation -I can't recall a time before I found out what molestation was that I wasn't
molested. Did you get that?

There was never a time in my childhood that I wasn't molested, until after I sat through the "good touch-bad touch" spiel at school. If I could put a START age on it, I'd say it started around the time I was 5, it ended when I was 11; after one of my uncles "caressed" my budding breasts and stuck his nasty behind tongue in my mouth. That's when, I immediately knew that what he was doing to me and what every other uncle and family friend had done to me was DEAD WRONG. As soon as he was finished, I called my mom to come get me from my grandmother's house (all of us cousins spent our summers there); because something had happened and I needed her NOW! I remember it like it was yesterday. I felt SO dirty and absolutely SICK to my stomach. I was shaking all over and I waited with baited breath for my mom to come get me. She couldn't get out the car soon enough before I spilled it.

The MANY looks on her face scared me
. They went from shock, terror, anger and then sadness. My mother held me and we wept together. She kept apologizing for not protecting me but I never blamed her. I knew it wasn't her fault and she assured me that it wasn't mine either. She quickly went into Mama Bear mode and left the room to talk to my grandmother about it. A few short minutes later, without a word she hastily gathered up my belongings and took me home. I found out later that my grandmother didn't believe me. Her son, who had been at that time (and probably still is) incarcerated multiple times would NEVER touch me or anyone else inappropriately. It caused a HUGE rift in our family that we never speak about but I know in my heart of hearts that I'm not the only one it happened to.

SURVIVOR of rape - I was a young, dumb 14 year old girl putting myself in very compromising positions in order to fit in. I skipped school with my "so called" 18 year old boyfriend who filled me up with Mad Dog 20/20 and Cisco, passed out and then he let his friends run a "train" on me. Imagine hearing about it the next day at school. To this day, I don't know how many men/boys violated me that day. No, it wasn't in a dark alley at gunpoint kind of rape, but rape is rape. What I didn't do was CONSENT to any of the foolishness which constitutes it as rape.

Teen sex/promiscuity - HOT MAMA! I don't have enough hands to untie the soul ties I've made. I was never considered cute so if any man showed me ANY kind of attention, he could get it.

SURVIVOR of domestic violence -I watched my mother's second husband beat the s*** out of her when I was in 6th-8th grades. It got so bad that I would sleep with a pair of scissors under my pillow just in case something popped off with them and I couldn't spend the night with friends for fear I wouldn't be there to protect my mom. 

When I was 7 months pregnant with my first daughter, her dad (who I was no longer with) decided to pop up at my house unannounced. One of my male friends was there cutting my grass because my baby shower was scheduled later that day. My Ex called me into the garage, slapped the dog s*** out of me and accused me of cheating on him. I did mention that we were no longer together, right? Oh ... but did I mention his new girlfriend was outside waiting for him in the car? #foolish  

And YES, I pressed charges, Cuz what you won't do is .... knock the s*** out of me and get away with it. 

Family history of cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure.

Divorced/Single mother -I'm divorced and a single mother for the second time around.

Unemployment- I got fired ON MY DAY OFF. No lie. Bwwwwahahahhaaha!!!

Foreclosure

Bankruptcy

Daddy issues - HAD 'em- thank God I've been delivered!

In 1990, I was literally run over by a school bus. Seriously, a bus ran OVER my foot, it was crushed and my ankle was broken in three places. I was prepped and ready to go into surgery to have my foot amputated. I don't know what happened in that operating room but the doctors were able to save my foot with this warning: you'll never wear heels and walk with a limp forever. My foot is ugly as all getout but I still have it. My left leg is shorter than the right but guess what you won't see me do? Walk with a limp. Oh, and I love a wedge and kitten heel.

In the span of one year (2009-10) I lost my vehicle to repossession, husband (I was the petitioner, not him. Let's be clear), job (husband and job literally in one week) and house to foreclosure. The list goes on… and on …and on some more… I may be a walking statistic, but God is a SAVIOR!!! A lot of people wouldn't have survived half of that.

BUT GOD!! In June of 2012, I sold everything in my apartment, left my daughters in Indianapolis, IN and moved to Augusta, GA with nothing more than a word from God. A month to the day that I moved, I was offered a position as a Data Manager at a Charter School Network in Atlanta where I commuted from Augusta 3-5 days a week until my position was eliminated in December of the same year. I excitedly thanked the HR Manager for the opportunity and strutted out praising God because I KNEW He was up to something. I prayed about looking for another job and He told me a job is not what He had in store for me but businessES were. Today, I stand before you as the proud owner of Vik VarWoo, LLC. the parent company of SOWN Social Media which provides social media marketing services for ministries and other organizations and Victory Koutour Fashion & Design which provides custom, made to order women's apparel, t-shirts and fashion styling services. I also host a weekly fashion segment called "Kouture Your Kloset" on "The Beauty Essentials Show with Christa Williiams" on WAAW Shout 94.7 in the Augusta, GA/Aiken, SC area.

MY PERSONAL TRUTH … God created me in His image and EVERYTHING He created is beautiful. My beauty doesn't detract from yours and yours doesn't detract from mine. We can co-exist beautifully together. I'm intelligent, strong, loving, fabulous, flawed, beautiful, a wonderful mother, friend, daughter, sister, leader, creative and worthy. God loves me enough ~o test m~ so that I can share my TESTimony and Him with others. I AM His masterpiece - flaws and all! 


*Just so you know, Vik's daughter's live with her in Augusta, Ga.*








April 1, 2014


Lisa Harris

"The GOOD LIFE"



Greetings everyone! It’s a humbling experience to be asked by Ms. Carolyn Franklin to be a guest blogger! Like her I am a Jesus’ girl. I have come a very long way in my life and God gets all the glory!

 I remember when I was a young girl living in the Liberty Community I wondered what was the reason God for allowing me to be born. Often in my childhood I felt all alone and out of place. I am the oldest of eight children.  Being from a large family sometimes I felt lost in the shuffle. My family wasn’t rich but my parents worked hard to give us a better life than they had. We always had something to eat and place to live.

My escape was daydreaming I used to sit in a tree and read books, day dream about traveling the world and living the “good life”. In my small mind the “good life” was having a large house, fancy car and lots of cash! Ha Ha lol! I can’t help but smile now.

To make a long story brief I got married at 18 and had my son Jonathan at 20, got divorced at 25 and remarried at 26 and divorced again at 32! Whew!!! But there was something missing in my life, an emptiness that couldn’t be filled by material possessions or being in a relationship with a man. My life didn’t work like I planned because Jesus wasn’t in his proper place. I was trying to live my life without the giver of life “Jesus”. No wonder I wasn’t a success! With God all things are possible and without him nothing is.

I learned that through my setbacks and heart aches that I needed him. Here I was alone and raising my son as a single parent and didn’t see any hope! But Jesus reminded me of all I had and that I must trust him and stop trying to live my way. He made a way and provision for my son and myself. I started realizing how blessed I was, I was blessed with a handsome son Jonathan and he is one of my proudest accomplishments. Jonathan has Autism and it is on the lower spectrum and he is nonverbal. It is so frustrating to be a mother and not have your child be able to communicate or even call me, "mama" or tell me what he needs, but by the Grace of my God; at age 16 he called me “Mama” and now with the help of modern technology he and I can have a regular conversation!  God wasn’t finished blessing me and when I surrendered everything to him he opened doors that the enemy weren’t able to shut.  If you don’t believe me “THIS IS WHAT HE DID ON DECEMBER 15, 2012!” I became a college graduate with a degree in Early Childhood Education! I am a certified teacher that is currently completing my Master’s Degree in Elementary Education.




God is so good and worthy of all the praise!! When I think about it I am living the “good life”!
God has opened doors to my career, and yes I am traveling and this summer I will be celebrating my birthday in Jamaica!! The Good Life is living for Christ and I finally found the reason I was born and all I can say is “Thank you Jesus for forgiving, saving, and redeeming me! I hope my testimony can help so see you can live a GOOD LIFE in Jesus!! Amen!
 
I Can DO ALL THINGS through CHRIST who STRENGTHENS ME. (Philippians 4:13)







March 9, 2014


Devin Thomas

"God Loves Me!" 


 In the midst of the storm, I fear not because God loves me! When I look in every direction and there is no one around I don't worry because God loves me! When the bills are due and I don't know where the money is going to come from I trust they will be paid because God loves me! When I sin and fall short of the Glory of God I believe that God still loves me! No matter what, I don't have to worry because God loves me!
1 John 4:8 says, "God is love!" Psalms 147:17 says, "The Lord is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works! This means God can not lie for that would not emulate the aforementioned description in the scripture. Therefore, when I read Phillippians 4:19 and it says, "God shall supply all your needs according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus," I have confidence that God has anticipated everything I would need in life and already made it ready because He loves me and can not lie. While discussing wedding plans with my fiancée and parents, my mom asked me how I could be so stress free about everything! I replied, "God loves me and it is already taken care of!"

The amazing thing about the love of God is you can't earn it and it is no respecter of person. There is nothing you can do that will make Him love you more than He does right now! God's Love is vastly superior to the love of man inasmuch that God's first action is always a move of love. Most believe that when we sin God first notion is to get angry with us. However, Romans 5:20 teaches that were sin abounds grace abounds more! This means that God first reaction to us sinning is to help us to stop sinning (grace/love) despite us grieving his heart (Genesis 6:6) by doing something he despises! Therefore, I can strive for perfection and not beat myself up about slipping because God loves me enough to help me when I fall! While creating us, He knew the sins that we would make and yet He still chose to love us. Many people will not find that kind of love on earth but to know that we have that love just because He is God and God all by himself is more than efficient. We don't deserve it but we have it everyday that He wakes us up on this earth.

Everyone knows that love is an action word, and there is no greater love than for one to lay down his life for his friends. John 3:16 demonstrates God's love in both aspect's of the previous sentence. He loved us so much that he sent his only son to die for us when he did nothing wrong. He loved us so much that he shed his blood in order to return us to our rightful place of grace God established when he created Adam (giving us dominion over all things)! It was this precious demonstration of Love that saved me from my self! When the floods of depression began to drown my will to live. When the enemy kept telling me that there was nothing to live for and tried to plant seeds of suicide in my head I remembered the love of Jesus! I remembered how he was bruised, scarred and shed his blood to provide me with a way out! I thank God I knew enough to call on the name of Jesus! Because he loved me I am still here today! That was years ago and every since that day I remind myself constantly, God loves me! I say it so much that it has become my source of confidence, peace and joy! I say it so much that I get so full of His love for me that I don't have time to worry about anything else! Nothing else matter! My faith has grown exponentially and life is more abundant and stress free all because I know God loves me!!!






February 25, 2014

Mildred Crawford Franklin

"A Clean Heart"

Having a personal relationship with God is a must. I can’t Make it on my mother or father's prayers. I can still remember the first time I truly called on the Lord with all my heart and I do mean all my heart. As I sit and ponder over what to write, I remember a sermon my brother, preached in the late 70’s; “The Wash Pot”. 

For those who are to young, the wash pot was used to wash clothes. To reminisce just a little, take a large black cast iron pot filled with water and build a fire around it. Place your dirty sheets and pillow cases and homemade oxen soap inside the pot and use a long stick to stir it. Didn’t matter the soot or trash that fell in the pot the garment still came out white as snow. The point my brother was making, you may have all the ingredients and tools to do the job but you have to do the work, we all need stirring up. 

As a child I heard about the Lord, as a teenager in the time of a storm I came to know the Lord. Getting baptized at an early age doesn’t mean you are saved, far from it. The way to enter God’s kingdom is by faith, believing in Christ fully. When you are born into the world you are innocent, yet that human nature is already there. In life you are going to have trails and tribulations that will soil your body. 

The pot is like a vessel and the soil garment is the condition of the heart. Heartache, troubled minds those are physical, you need the fire to get your attention. The oxen soap, thats the Holy Spirit, it will move in your life but you have to work with it, move it around. If you just let the soap and garment sit or stay in one place the stain will not move but if you use the stick to move everything around so the water will flow through the garments the stain will move just like the Holy Spirit will move in your life. 

Give yourself completely to the Lord trusting and believing, put all your faith in God allow the Holy Spirit to move in your life. I look back over my life and cherish every intimate moment with God, knowing that each moment makes my faith that much stronger. God never leaves, we distance ourselves from God by not spending time communicating with him. 

I don’t have a list, but I do have a testimony to let you know to whom I  belong. I am a living testimony with a 24/7 relationship with God . When I call him up; I just leave the line open, I walk in faith; although troubling moments came my way I can’t complain. When I think about how Jesus suffered and died for my sins before I was even born, what an awesome God we serve. 

He is always there for me, He was my Guide in my father’s sick and dying room. He was my comfort in my mother’s dying room. He was strength in my brothers, Ellis and Ernest  passing and my sister Jannie’s dying room. He was my understanding with Yvonne. Lord knows, He was my all and all with my husband’s years of sickness and death. When my journey is over on this earth, no need for words, my God already knows my heart. 



January 14, 2014

DEVONNE FRANKLIN SLATON


"But God"

But God……
I am experiencing difficulty breathing (already on oxygen), the baby’s heartrate is dropping (at times unable to be detected by the monitor).  Doctor and nurses rush in; I’m feeling faint; baby has to be delivered emergently due to distress.  November 11, 2013 at 8:42pm Baby Collin Curtis is born with a tight nuchal ( the umbilical cord was around his neck), seconds later Collin cries his first cry, the most beautiful sound every mother and father waits to hear.       

But God….. “But God is so rich in mercy, and He loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, He gave us life when He raised Christ from the dead”  Ephesians 2:4-5



God was so very present.  He manifested His sovereignty during the miracle of my child birth.  Even at the peak of the most critical point of my delivery, God was there.  I could feel a strong calmness resting over me as my doctor was shouting “stay with me Devonne, look at me, I need you to push.  Devonne, Devonne breathe, stay with me, look at me, I need you to push”.   God was there……


Later that night I’m transferred to my new room.  My nurse comes in to check my vitals and then tells me to lie back onto to the bed……I felt a “gush” and fluid began to pour out of me.  The nurse pulls the cover back to check me and sees that I am hemorrhaging (bleeding heavily) and passing large clots.  My nurse calls for the charge nurse and notifies her of a patient that is “bleeding out”  (me).  My doctor is paged, other nurses enter my room as well as patient care techs, everyone is doing what they can to assist with the crisis at hand.  This went on for hours, frequent, intermittent “gushes” of blood and large clots.


My nurse would come in every ½ hour to 45 minutes pushing on my lower abdomen trying to get my Uterus to “firm up” to get the bleeding under control (this was very painful right after a traumatic delivery).  My nurse is literally on her toes pushing down onto my abdomen as hard as she can as I lie flat on my back, I can hear the blood and the clots pouring out of me.  I am yet still calm, feeling weaker;  I can feel God’s presence heavier now than during the delivery of Collin.  My mind starts to ponder and I wonder if I have pleased God; I thought about the difficulties in my marriage that my husband and I had not worked through, I thought about my kids, I thought about my dear mother and how much she has already lost—I asked the question is my mother about to bury a child? Is my husband about to bury a wife?  Are my kids about to lose their mother?  Then I thought about the words that my father spoke to my sister and I during his last days while in the ICU, he said, “whatever gone be, gone be”.  There were so many clinical people in my room tending to my medical needs, but it felt like it was just me and My God…. But God




My life was literally and truly in God's hand. Finally the bleeding decreased and the clots were not as large.  My doctor ordered a much needed blood transfusion due to large volume of blood that I had lost.  I had lost half of my body’s total blood supply (2.5 liters)……But God.  He kept me.  He brought me through.  Nobody but God.  I am grateful..  God has a way of showing us that He is, “I am THAT I am”.  He has a way of showing us that He is still God and He is still able.  “My God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think according to the power that worketh in us”



Having gone through this experience, this crisis… I asked myself some profound questions, “what if God cancels my tomorrow?” Have I lived a life of readiness? Have I nurtured a spirit of forgiveness? Have I been a devoted vessel for Him?  Have I given Him my All?   …..We can all ask these questions and examine ourselves.  But God….Nobody but God.





I am a believer.  God has shown up so many times in my life.  But even as believers, we sometimes find ourselves trying to work out our own dilemas or strategically trying to plan our own solutions.  But when we are true believers shouldn't we do just that.....Believe?  When God said,  " I am That I am",   He meant it.  He is all and everything that we need Him to be.  God does not need us to help Him be God. 



November 17, 2013



Charlotte Henson-Tucker

"Seeing the Blessings in the Midst of Chaos"


How many of you remember the famous line in Why did I get Married…. (I am going up this mountain to save my marriage)…. Sheila was a complex character with many wounds but had 
amazing faith.

I remember the drive here like it was yesterday, me and my oldest coming to a new city to meet my then husband to try and start over.  The experience will forever change my life. I remember those same words in a somewhat of a different scenario, It wasn’t I was going up this mountain to save my marriage, but I was moving to North Carolina to save my marriage.

Shortly after arriving we found out we were pregnant with our second child, I remember my heart sinking thinking how could I tell my then husband. We were trying to put the pieces together and with one child with a disability and a marriage held together by string I knew that this would only complicate things. I remember the day I told him over dinner, he called his mom and seemed to be excited.  

So nine months later we welcomed, Cooper James Henson into the world.  It was one of the most amazing experiences of my life.  Knowing that God had blessed us with this little one and so far so good.  During my pregnancy I was constantly praying that this child would be ok.  He was absolutely perfect…. Just as his brother (BJ) was before him.  Holding that bundle of joy in my arms reminded me that God was still God.

During my pregnancy two things happened, I became more and more independent made new friends, joined an awesome church and began to navigate my new responsibilities at work.  The second thing that happened was that I realized that I was doing this primarily alone with a husband who was not engaged. Despite my fears, I knew it was over, I stayed too long at the party.  All the lights were out and the DJ had gone home.

In the midst of it all I had the beautiful blessing of two children, plugged into a church family that would be there to see me through it all.  I felt a release… I am not an advocate of divorce but I do believe there are times when we stay long after God has released us.  When I look back over my life I realize that, the environment I grew up in dictated how I responded to a dysfunctional relationship.  In order for me to be better I had to gain the tools I needed to succeed, not just as a mom but in all of my relationships.  I knew at this point I needed counseling…..

The biggest thing I learned about myself and my family was that they did the best that they knew how, they gave me what they had.  In order to break that cycle for my own kids I had to be better, I had to want more and teach them to want more… I had to be healthy mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. I had to give them healthy balance.  After all God trusted me with these precious souls.

My divorce was final on July 8 2008, and I was not prepared for what would happen next.  On August 8, 2008 I was laid off.  Now this totally caught me off guard, and not only was I dealing with a divorce that year, one of my dearest friends was dying.  She was that one person who had coached me through my career, marriage and raising kids.  Before I made any tough decision I would call her for her advice or to make sure that I was on the right page.  She was my confidant and we shared more stories about God, life, children, husbands and divorce than I can remember. 

Within a four month span my marriage ended, I lost a job that I loved and my friend dies.  I was truly struggling to hold it all together.  I remember putting BJ on the bus, taking Cooper to day care and coming home and sitting in the same spot.  I felt immobile. I only did what I had to do to keep us afloat.  My friends had no idea that I was in so much pain they thought everything was fine because I was good at wearing a mask.  One of my clients got me a consulting gig back in Richmond so I was traveling there once a week.  So that kept money coming in.  Most of my life I had spent in constant motion because I always knew that if I stopped moving it would all catch up with me.  So I tried to keep myself busy but not really going anywhere if that makes sense.

I remember asking God, no correction telling God…. I have two children one with a disability and you let this happen.  You allowed this!  How could you!  I was a little angry and I preceded to do all the things that we do as believes, you know the reminding him of my deeds, I have been a faithful warrior, I have done this, I have done that for you…How could you allow me to come here and it turned into this. 

I was then reminded of this thing called free will, you know how we make our own choices and he still provides.  I cannot even count the number of people that came to my rescue over the last 7 years or how many people held my hand and told me it was going to be alright.  I cannot count the number of times that a bill needed to be paid and I did not have it.  Nor can I tell you how many times I felt like throwing in the towel and just calling it quits.

What I can tell you is this… His GRACE and MERCY is more that I could ever deserve.  He loves me in spite of myself, my choices and my sometimes ungrateful heart.  He loves me through the seen and the unseen… He has shielded me and my boys and provided protection when I did not know I needed it. He is truly the Alpha and the Omega. I realize now that I had to make this trip to Charlotte.  God needed my undivided attention, this was my desert season, this was the place I came to meet the real me. This is the place where I am discovering who I truly am and what he has called me to be.  

In Ephesians, Paul talks about being worthy of the Call. I pray that I am worthy of the call he has placed on my life. Do you know how many times 7 is written in the bible?  Too many to count.  Throughout the bible the number 7 appears repeatedly as a sign of Divine Perfection.  Am I perfect? No… Is my life perfect? No

Here is the thing, God sees us perfectly designed and a masterpiece by him.  We were created perfectly in his image…He is perfect even though we are imperfect.  I realize that the blessing is that it has all been for my Good, that I am better mother, wife, and friend.  The blessing is through it all he met us right where we were, providing everything that we needed. The blessing is that I have learned better ways of exercising my FAITH…

So here I sit 7 years later, blessed with two beautiful children and a new husband, (I have to save that story for another blog post).  We are now awaiting God’s assignment, His Divine Perfection awaits us….

 I never felt that my faith was tested, just that there were many lessons along the way that he wanted to teach me…






October 13, 2013

Minister Dexter Wimbish

"Pride and Arrogance Keeps Us Separated from God"   
      
Each of us have certain obstacles that we must overcome in order to form a true relationship with God.  Some of us have control issues which prevent God from having free reign in our lives.  There may be others who are filled with self centeredness and an unforgiving spirit that denies us a relationship with God.  Still others may suffer from a hard heart which prevents not only God’s love from entering their lives, but love from anyone else who attempts to come into their life.
For me one of the areas of my life that I had to overcome in order to forge a true relationship with Christ was pride and arrogance.  When I speak of pride I am not speaking of being proud of my accomplishments or work ethics, as that type of pride is valuable and can be used by God.  I am speaking of the type of pride and arrogance that fills you with the misguided belief that God favors you more or that you are better off than someone else.  I am really not sure when I became afflicted with the disease of arrogance, but when I look back on my life I can see where my actions were a clear indication of pride and arrogance.  I have always only had a few friends in my life and I had generally assumed it was because I just didn’t trust a lot of people.
However, I have come to realize that part of the reason was that I appeared aloof and unapproachable to some people.  I remember a few years ago I was dating a young woman whom I really liked but she said she didn’t think she was smart enough to date me.  I was taken aback because I had to question whether I was carrying myself in such a manner where I was attempting to place my intellect on display knowingly or unknowingly.  I came to realize that somewhere along the road from my humble beginnings I had lost my humility. Proverbs 13:10 10Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice.
In retrospect, I know now that God was trying to send me a message, “More of him and less of me.”  Like many others who buy into the belief that we are who we are because of ourselves, I had stopped giving God all the credit for everything in my life.  It wasn’t until I lay in bed near death’s door that I realized that God had given me everything and in an instant he could take it away.  This was the most humbling experience to have every worldly possession you have taken away to only be left with the love of God and the love of family.  Yet, it also taught me that the love of God is actually all we need.
When you are filled with arrogance and pride, God can’t operate effectively in your life because you never give him the credit he deserves. We find ourselves too busy uplifting ourselves that God gets no glory.
In Proverbs 8:13 we find the following scripture. 13To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech. Clearly pride and arrogance serve as a gateway to evil because it induces you to say and do things which are evil.  You say things which are hurtful to others because you think you are better than others and you do not care about hurting others.
If we humble ourselves and learn from our actions we can bring humility and wisdom into our lives. In Proverbs 11:2, we find the following words. 2When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with humility comes wisdom. Thus arrogance and pride gives us the opportunity to learn and grow when we realize they have no place in the kingdom of God. When we work against the hurtful and evil nature of pride and arrogance, we begin to work towards God’s plan.  We can look at how we used to treat people and know that is not within God’s will and learn to be more accepting, loving, and encouraging. 
Pride and arrogance have no place in God’s kingdom because it creates barriers to God’s love and creates space for the enemy to operate.  Proverbs 13:10 states that 10Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice. Furthermore, in Proverbs 16:18 we see that the presence of pride indicates an impending fall from the grace of God when we find the words 18Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.
The exciting news is that while pride and arrogance moves us away from God and lessens our standing with God, humility elevates us in the sight of God and allows him to begin to do great things in our life. Proverbs 29:23 23 A man's pride brings him low, but a man of lowly spirit gains honor.
In the past three years I have begun to see God elevate me to higher levels than ever before, even though I have been stripped outwardly of so many earthly things. I am beginning to see God operate in my life and in my family’s life in so many powerful ways.  There have been awards I felt undeserving of, financial blessings that appear out of nowhere, and new relationships that have blessed me immeasurably.  I have learned to give God the praise for all of the wonderful things that are happening in my life because I see clearly that they are occurring by no acts of me but simply out of God’s grace.  The real test comes when God expands his abundance and the enemy tests me by trying to convince me that it's my fortitude and strength that produces that favor and not God’s grace.  Sorry, been down that road before and I have no desire to travel that path again. (LOL)
For those who are stubborn in their pride and arrogance I would warn them that in the end God will have his way. My grandmother Bennie Mae Benn used to say a hard head will make a soft behind and oh wasn’t she right.  God has a way of showing you his power in an un-watered down way in order to get your attention so that he receives the glory that is due to him. Isaiah 2:11 states that “11The eyes of the arrogant man will be humbled and the pride of men brought low; the LORD alone will be exalted in that day.” This means that you may believe today that you are in control but God has a way of showing you he is the author and the finisher of your life.  He is to be exalted and lifted up for all that we do and not the other way around.