Good morning facehookets, on the Eve of Jesus’s resurrection I am reminded of a story my grandmother told my about Jesus’s love and forgiveness.

“Through him, all things can happen, as long as you open your heart to his forgiveness Michele”,

Easter weekend always will be and was my Ma-Maw’s favorite weekend. She loved this time of year.

She especially loved taking me to her little white church on Easter Sunday in Johnson City, TN. And although I often tell folks I am definitely not the organized religion type of person, for many different reasons, it is my strong affiliation to my Ma-Maw’s heart that binds me to Jesus and always brings me back to my soul-home for Easter Sunday.

For years I have struggled with the understanding of who God is to me and how the interpretation of Jesus’s teachings can live hand in hand with both my doubt and my faith. It is peculiar to me when folks seem so certain about religious doctrine and unconditionally believe what others have taught them over the years, without any rendition of one’s own words and deeds, especially by others who seem so godly to me.

For me, it is my actual doubt of things that leads me back to my faith in almost every instance of my nightly prayers. I am also reminded many times throughout my days why Jesus prayed and begged,

“forgive them father, for they know not what they do”,  is used daily as a justification of the collapse of restrained judgement filled with no hope for others and only admonishment for dilapidated immoral souls who once they’ve judge, look for material effects for happiness and serenity

It is this prayer by Jesus that sustains me throughout my days of walking in the footsteps of him and understanding how often his faith must have been challenged as he saw such fillers and foolery happening day in and day out as some folks aspired for the lavishness of a gratuitous lifestyle within his name, only to use his father’s name and judgement of others to fill their seats.

It is my overall understanding of the abundance of Jesus’s grace in giving to others, instead of oneself, that fills my understanding of faith, hope and this acknowledged acceptance within Jesus that always seems to be the only purpose of God’s love in our lives in the first place

Coin-operated pastors are no different than coin-operated politicians, and if you are going to tithe this weekend, please tithe locally; as our community has a lot of need.

In honor of both my grandmothers today, I will be utilizing my time to help others help themselves as the persistence of some folk’s lack of hope leads to the recklessness of their bad judgment. And with the knowledge of this fact and the acknowledgment  that one hand lent to another hand truly can make all the difference in our souls, I ask you to reach out to someone in need today and take their hand in yours.

Trust me when I say, the warmth you will feel cannot be bought or sold anywhere

Happy Easter Sunday, and remember how much love you have been given and if for some reason you feel your coffers are empty right now, know the power of giving and sharing your time with someone in need of hope and faith can mean more than the almighty dollar, even though you can’t write it off on your taxes, like organized institutions of faith do, know your time-given will serve your heart and your community as you go through life with the understanding of what Jesus wished for as he gave his sins for us.

Because know within yourself all things can happen; know through the story of Jesus’s resurrection all hope in each other is restored and all your past sins are to be forgiven, and know your soul can make a difference to another in need of this same kind of forgiveness and strength, through your shared kindness of your time

If you’ve been distant or mad at someone you once loved, reach out to them tomorrow and tell them all is forgiven; trust me all will be made better and your heart will be filled with the love and grace of eternal forgiveness

Peace be with all of you this Easter Sunday

I once sold a home elevator to a very famous evangelical in the south who upon the arrival of his elevator told me that God told him not to comply with our contractual agreement. Now for the betterment of my Ma-maw’s heart, I will not say who this evangelical was but I will tell you that as soon as he felt so spiritually-guided to let me know that my twenty-seven year old being had not a clue how God’s contract with me, should I choose to listen, would tell me to give him (the pastor) his money back; even though I was out over ten thousand dollars for this god-servicer’s new home elevator that had just arrived to his home.

Needless to say my facehookers, once anyone brings up the man upstairs in a money conversation, I am always reminded of what my non-religious grandmother Nonnie use to say,

“Shellsteinavinsky, if anyone ever brings up money and the baby Jesus in the same voice, do me a favor, run like the wind and always know they are up to no good”