As a part of 97.1 WQMG and the Tom Joyner Morning Show, many of you know my role as a broadcaster that includes delivering the news/headlines on the TJMS. Well I'm blogging today to not only talk about what I enjoy and have so humbly been blessed to do with this radio station, but to stress the importance of staying on top of events that are taking place in our world today! Many of you at the writing of this blog will have heard or even discuss to some degree the recent devestation that has taken place in Japan with the powerful earthquake that triggered a Tsunami. As many as 200-300 bodies have been found in the coastal area of the country, and without question those numbers will horrifically rise, as waves as high as some 33 feet carried cars, boats and massive debris across open fields. The earthquake itself, which struck Japan around 2:45pm their time/12:45am EST(our time) has gone down so far as the largest in the country's history and the 5th strongest in world in some 111 years, with at least 19 aftershocks stronger than the recent earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand.
The Question Of The Day that many of you tune in to hear on the TJMS recently lead to some very good dialogue when asked...'Is News Becoming More 'Entertainment' Than Acutal News?' Many of us do try to keep up with current events, myself included, as much as possible...but for those of you that don't, take a hard look at what's going in the world around us. Many individuals make the mistake of thinking it doesn't affect me because it's 'not happening here.' Events such as this have a tremendous impact on ALL of us, whether it's happening here at home or around the globe...NONE of us are immuned to any type of devastation that takes place in this world! In fact that same Tsunami that struck Japan also hit Hawaii and put areas of alert as far away as South America, Canada, Alaska, and the ENTIRE U.S. West Coast!!
Whether you have open dialogue through conversation with co-workers, friends, family(and that should even include your children..they too need to realize the importance of world events), or even complete strangers, be it verbally or on the world wide web, just try to keep yourself informed about what's going on around you!
In closing, my prayers and thoughts are with those in Japan and for all of us here in this country. What's taking place in the world around us makes me think of the Book of Zephaniah, with the opening verses reminiscent of both (the) creation and of Noah's flood. Chapter 1:3 "I shall finish off earthling man and beast. I shall finish off the flying creature of the heavens and the fishes of the sea, and the stumbling blocks with the wicked ones; and I will cut off mankind from the surface of the ground,” is the utterance of Jehovah. " Chapter 3:12 also comes to mind, "And I shall certainly let remain in the midst of you a people humble and lowly, and they will actually take refuge in the name of Jehovah." (New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures) In light of what is taking place in this world today...may we indeed take refuge in our God and continue to keep ourselves informed.
We're in the thick of the summer season and whether families are planning vacations near home or far away, or just finding the nearest swimming pool to 'cool' down during the heat of the season..the concept of summer vacation has been criticized by some because (some) students supposedly forget large amounts of information learned in the past year. On the flip side, supporters believe children need the 2-3 months off to relax and take a break from the heavy loads of schoolwork, homework, and the strees of peer pressure, bullying, and more!
The original concept of summer vacation was given as a time for kids to work on family farms for spring planting....my how times have changed! Where is YOUR stance on summer vacation? Whatever you and your child/children plan to do...be safe and of course spend it with your QMG family on the radio!!!!
In over 25 years of living in the State of North Carolina...Washington, D.C. born, but the Carolinas I proudly call 'home', I literally stayed glued to the television(as I'm sure many of you were), trying to stay informed, and at the same time doing a WHOLE LOT OF PRAYING....as some of the worst weather likely tested both our fears and faith over the weekend. Honestly being the sport nut that I am, I was in the middle of watching the remaining NCAA Basketball Tournament games, when the local news affliate interrupted programming to discuss the threat of impending weather. At first I really didn't pay it much mind, giving...at the time...it was a mostly cloudy afternoon and most of the weather reports I had heard during the early half of the week just called for another/typical cloudy afternoon with scattered showers and a possible thunderstorm.
But that soon all changed when ALL of the local television networks broke in during their regular programming to talk about the possibility of severe, even threatening weather heading in our direction. It was then that I started to pay a little more attention to the current situation, and ended up getting very little sleep as the t.v. stations continued with several hours of pin-pointing where the storms were gonna hit and around what time.
Although I wasn't directly affected(living in Winston-Salem where most of my family and friends are also located), I began thinking about, especially co-workers living in the areas that were greatly affected...Davidson and Guilford counties and in particular High Point that took a pounding from what later was confirmed as TWO tornadoes and storms that ripped through homes(destroying so many in its path), and dumping heavy amounts of rain and hail....that fact that NOT ONE fatality was reported is truly amazing and can only be the power of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
We as a community can rebuild our homes..but we can't bring back a life! In closing, what a blessing the rest of this week will bring..absolutely gorgeous weather going into our Easter holiday weekend, and no doubt, prayers of 'thanks' at the many upcoming Sunrise services that will take place...and may we all keep the families who were displaced in our everyday thoughts and prayers...as this storm too....shall pass!
Life is so precious, so anytime news of the death/passing of a dear friend or loved one, can still come as a shock, especially given that to some of us the person was still considered young. Case in point Tom Joyner announced the passing of a fellow radio/television personality...Bo Griffin, a Greenville, South Carolina native whose bubbly personality was enjoyed by listeners and viewers everywhere. I personally remember her appearances on the TV show 'Extra' and becoming a designer for women's apparel. Just 51 years young, Bo succumbed to cancer, and the question of 'why so soon, why so young' has entered the minds of the TJMS family. As we remember Bo, please remember that life is short and tomorrow is promised to NO ONE, so I want to encourage all of us to PLEASE take better care of ourselves, and don't wait to the last minute to see a Doctor or Physician. And may we continue to be the soldiers in the fight against Cancer, Diabetes, Stroke, High Blood Pressure and other factors that took a dear friend like Bo Griffin, 'just a little too soon.'
February 14th marks a special day for lovers everywhere, and as you fine folks celebrate the love of your mate and/or significant other let Valentine's Day remind you that its more that just how many flowers, or how well in advance you book dinner reservations...they are nice 'accessories', but your true love from your heart, soul, and spirit can be the greatest gift(s) in itself! It should be a love that can stand the test to time and get you through even the toughest of days, and your TRUE valentine will understand and appreciate what your love represents. So to all Valentines, everywhere, although I can't send you a bouquet of flowers or a box or candy...just know that MY love I send to you comes not just on Valentine's Day...but everyday!... and yes I do LOVE YOU and please make sure you show YOURSELF some love....I'm just saying:)
Sending out the battle cry for ALL prayers going towards ENDING this now miserable winter weather. It was a beautiful site at the beginning of last weekend, given that we haven't had a really good snow in several years. BUT when it starts happening on the regular...and a pattern seems to be developing here...remember the Friday/weekend going into the Christmas holiday of 2009? Last weekend of course and now this weekend only leaving Sunday, which for most of us is the last day of trying to get any type of rest before heading back to work(good luck on this by the way with this being the BIG GAME WEEKEND)..Alright everyone, let's get into the prayer position(s) and pray this weather away...at least for another day!
Not only do we reflect on the history of African-Americans, but Black History Month allows ALL of us to learn and gather a respect of the rich contributions of men and women who were doctors, lawyers, city council members, teachers, athletes, great orators, preachers, mothers, fathers, grand-parents... any and everyone who made a difference in our schools, neighborhoods, churches, and in every nook and cranny of our society!
Sadly, there's history that this country should continue to be very ashamed of from denying the rights of voting, going to a college or university of our choosing, or not able to ride in the front of a bus or other forms of public transportation or drinking out of a water fountain marked 'white' and 'colored' and eating in separate restaurants and other public places that serve food.
But we (African-Americans) as a people continue to have a strong faith that has helped us overcome adversity and has brought us a mighty long way, although we will always have a long way to go...but the journey in the process continues to give us the hope and strength we need to survive and carry on!
Just the recent events that February 1, 2010 brought us with the grand opening of the International Civil Rights Center and Museum, just seeing and hearing from the remaining 3 survivors of the N.C. A&T 4 that sparked a change in black history forever (February 1, 1960), should be a reminder to us all that history never stops being made! So let's continue to teach, talk about, and especially inspire one another to never forget where we come from and that WE ALL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY to make history!
There are likely many things in your personal life that get you through those 'tough' times- prayer, talking to someone, maybe even writing in a journal to see your thoughts come to life on paper. For me..I like to refer to it as the three 'p's...
PRAYER, PERSEVERANCE, and PATIENCE. The most important of these for me is indeed prayer- and shall we say I don't 'leave home without it', always giving thanks to his Almighty for even letting me live to see the day, and giving thanks before I close my eyes and pray that I will live to see just one more day! Perseverance, which at times can run in short supply, reassures me that the next day will always be better than the day prior, because if you really stop and think about it, no two days are ever exactly the same. And lastly patience, which is an extension of perseverance and largely serves as a great back-up plan in making sure what may begin as a rough start to any day, will NOT be the case by the end of the day. So I pass along this blog in hopes of (1) letting you know that we ALL have those days that may start off rocky, but (2) when you meditate on those 3 'p' s, which I often do..everything really is going to be alright. And as I always like to say when saying good-bye for the day on the radio...THERE ARE NO BAD DAYS..SOME DAYS ARE JUST BETTER THAN OTHERS!
Today I celebrate a milestone...turning the big 4-0:)...it's a day of mixed blessings while the devastation of Haiti still weighs heavy on my mind, but at the same time I reflect in the excitement of thinking back to the years of spending those yearly celebrations with family and close friends, and even meeting and getting to know my extended family like you. Bittersweet because some family(like my grandmother) are no longer here to call and wish me a happy anniversay, but I know she and other dear ones I've lost are smiling down from the clouds up above! So I give thanks to my God for letting me celebrate another year..and to you Mommy for bringing me into the world..and who knew your little girl grew up right before your eyes!
Just when you think you're having a bad day...someone, somewhere has got it worse. That phrase has never been more profound as the country of Haiti desperately tries to make sense of how to survive such a horrific ordeal as an earthquake of 7.0 magnitude shook the country to its core. And as this world continues to help in aid with water, medical supplies and trying to comfort those who have lost families, friends, and loved ones, do we ever think of the possibility of reliving the nightmare(that for some people has never really gone away) of 9-11, and what possible support would we receive on a global scale. I had a friend in College who was Haitian-American, and I can't even begin to image what possible hell Carla could be going through in trying to contact her family, as she once told me that her Father still remained in the Country with other relatives. For all the indifferences that exist here in the United States...financial bailouts to big banks and Ceo's getting outrageous bonuses to Senators of both the House and Senate who still can't agree on a Universal HealthCare plan, a lot of us are blessed in more ways than we care to realize. So the next time I dare start to complain about i.e. not being 'rich' enough or living in a more 'fanciful' home, please stop me and remind me of a person in Haiti or anywhere in the world where people have nothing and may have to start life over with nothing and to just simply count my blessings(and yours)....one by one!