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How To Heal from a Bruised Heart-Part II

How To Heal from a Bruised Heart-Part II
By Karen Stewart-Ross

In a previous article, we spoke with Minister Penny J. Little of Evangel Cathedral in Upper Marlboro, Maryland who shared her story of being delivered from emotional brokenness – a state of emotional pain that results in a bruised heart. In part 2 of the conversation, Minister Penny shares how to heal.

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Emotional healing began for Minister Penny when she realized that she was angry at God for all the things that had happened to her and decided to have an honest conversation with Him.
“… I was taught you don’t question God. I was taught that that would be disrespectful…And I started to say, ‘Where were you? Why did you allow this?’ I didn’t think He was going to answer but He did…,” said Minister Penny.
God showed her that there was a “bigger plan” behind it all – that there was a purpose behind the pain.
“…And He started to show me that even in the darkest place, I (God) was still there. I(God) was still protecting you. I (God) had to allow things to happen but it was orchestrated, you know, it was a controlled environment because for every one of those environments where I should have given up somehow I kept going,” said Minister Penny, who offers the following tips for healing:

Reconcile your relationship with God.

“…The Bible says that you first love God with all your heart and then you love your neighbor as you love yourself. Well, how can I love my neighbor if I haven’t figured out how to love me?,” said Minister Penny.

Reconcile your relationship with yourself and love yourself by spending quality time with yourself, recognizing your worth.

“Because a lot of times we have a very jaded perception of what it means to love us. We depend on other people to love us. We depend on the relationships that we are in – for them to reciprocate love so we can know how it feels and that’s based on the perception that we have internally within us but if we have lost our voice, we don’t know how to readily communicate that to another person if we’re coming out of a bad relationship and thinking, ‘I’m going to go to another one,’ you’re only going to reciprocate, or you’re only going to repeat the same bad character traits because you never did get your voice back…,” said Minister Penny, who said that loving oneself ties into one’s relationship with God because one should love his or her neighbor as he loves himself or herself.

Reconcile with forgiveness.

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“You literally have to sit down and be honest with yourself: ‘Where are those places where unforgiveness exists in me or offense?’ You may not be in the place where you have said that, ‘Oh, I can never forgive them for that’ but you are bruised and have an offense. And you can know you have an offense because when you see them coming, you go the other way, or avoid talking to them. You don’t want to interact with them, but it’s not to the point of unforgiveness you want to avoid them. You have to reconcile those relationships. Sometimes it is not a face-to-face conversation. Sometimes, these are things you pour out of yourself and you called it closed,” said Minister Penny.

“If it is a relationship that you feel like you need to have dialogue with the other person, then go to them only after you have forgiven them totally because the most important thing about forgiveness is that it’s one-sided. It’s about you clearing your heart. It’s about you making peace with those relationships and then when you go to the other person, if that’s something that you want to do, you’re not looking for them to reciprocate because if you don’t clear your heart first and you go to them, you’re going to be even more devastated. So, forgiveness is one-sided. It’s about you making the decision to let something go. Then, if you have an opportunity to go to the other person, you can forgive them, and you don’t have any expectation of them apologizing…,” said Minister Penny.

Deal with your heart – access the freedom in your heart again.

“Start to spend time with you. Start to do those things that you love. Things that maybe that you wanted to have on your bucket list but never did. Start to have a relationship with yourself that is in your alone time. [Consider] that maybe loneliness is not the worst thing in the world. Loneliness is, for me, - I just don’t even like to use the word loneliness. I believe that everybody has to come to that place in their life where they learn to be by themselves because that’s the only authentic place where you can learn who you really are. The Bible says, ‘To thine own self be true’ but you have to develop and know what that truth is is by spending time with yourself. So, once you have settled within yourself what it is to be alone and you have success and [are] satisfied with that in a healthy, loving way,” said Minister Penny.

Allow God to deal to restore you.

“Then, the next step is allowing your person to deal with your brokenness and allow God to build you back up again. Because when you spend time with yourself, what you are going to find out is probably not all the good things about you but you also find out some things that you don’t like about you and those are the places that you take to God and allow Him to deal with that. So, in essence, those are your broken places. The book is called Treasures of a Broken Heart where you discover those broken places in your heart. God will start to show you the purpose in it – why it happened so your pain starts turning into purpose and then it gives you motivation. It gives you compassion again. It restores your hope and it restores your hope from a place of healing and from a place of love and reconciliation. Those three things allow you to consider and start to love again,” said Minister Penny.

According to Minister Penny, brokenness may be perceived as a negative aspect of one’s life but it is really an opportunity for God to put the broken pieces of one’s heart back together again with His love and restore it to its normal function.

“Allow life to bring you to that point that you deal with your brokenness…A broken heart is not a bad thing. For me, I see it as an opportunity for you to be restored, to be reconciled, and renewed again, because unless something is broken, you can’t see all of the parts that may need repairing. You can’t see the damage - what the dysfunction [is] that may exist in a heart…,” said Minister Penny.

Minister Penny J. Little is an entrepreneur, mother, wife, deacon and minister at Evangel Cathedral in Upper Marlboro, Maryland. She is the founder of F.A.C.E. Enterprises, LLC, and Kemij Publishing, LLC, and the author of the book Treasures of A Broken Heart.
For more information, visit her website at: http://www.facepennyjlittle.com/

 

 


The higher the watts in a lightbulb, the brighter it shines.

Kristi Watts, former co-host, 700 Club by Frances Butler

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The higher the watts in a lightbulb, the brighter it shines.

 

When the name Kristi Watts is mentioned, evident faith in God and riotous laughter comes to mind. For over a decade she was co-host of the 700 Club program on CBN (Christian Broadcasting Network), a magazine-style blend of interviews, trending news, testimonies, answers to questions from viewers and prayers. It was hardly unusual to wonder and anticipate what Kristi, who exudes immense grace and never entertains a dull moment, had in her bag of humor for the day to lighten up the impact of often harrowing topics addressed on the show.

 

No stranger to adversity herself, she survived divorce, left a prestigious high-paying career and is often transparent about her low points in life to encourage others who may be facing misfortunes too. She is the recent author of a book titled, “Talk Yourself Happy.” In the book, Kristi underlines for Christians, the stumbling blocks to true joy and demonstrates the real transformational power in speaking God’s word.

 

I had a recent sit-down with Kristi to discuss her life and work as a TV host, producer and writer, and her new book, "Talk Yourself Happy."

 

Tell us how your journey on the 700 Club began and how you were able to captivate large numbers of viewers as you did.

 

I started out in 1999. I had studied journalism in school and earned a Master’s degree in Communications broadcasting. And so, initially, to be honest with you, I wanted to work in children’s television. That was my heart. And I was on my way to work for…tried to work for Nickelodeon in New York City and I didn’t get the job and I remember sitting in my car crying, just crying out to God saying, Lord, what do you want me to do? He said Christian TV and I said, other than that Lord, what do you want me to do? To be honest with you, I thought that my personality was too wild and I was too extra to fit into the mold of Christian television. To be honest with you, I always thought Christian television was boring. I’m a black Jersey girl with all this personality and they can’t handle all this. But the Lord was like, no, Christian television.

At the time, I was working at FOX television, I was one of the co-hosts of a couple of different shows and…I was a very big fish in a small pond. And…during that time, I quit and I went to work at a really small Christian station in Ohio where I think the only viewers were a couple of cows. Everybody thought I was crazy because I left a big time station to work for Christian television of all places. Anyway, the Lord was gracious with that and I did it for two years. And then I said, okay, I did what you wanted me to do now let me go back to secular television. This was a secondary thought, I said Lord, the only way I would do Christian television is if it was the 700 Club because…my mum used to watch the 700 Club when I was little and so…I was well aware of it and it was a highly respected program. How I got there, it makes no sense at all but the Lord. I did not audition or try or send resumes, I did nothing. Nothing but Jesus. So, I was married at the time and I went to NRB, the National Religious Broadcasters and just to kind of get a feel of it but after three days I said, yeah Lord, I still don’t fit here. Everybody has big hair, blue eyeshadow, and after three days, I was ready to go back to secular television. Then I ran into this guy who was cool. He said what do you do and I said I’m a TV producer and he said do you have a resume and I did and handed it to him. He gave me his card but I did not pay attention and I put the card in my pocket. When I walked out to the parking lot, I looked at the card and it said, ‘Vice President of the 700 Club’. His name is Andy Freeman, I met him on a Friday and he called me on the Tuesday and the next week they flew me out and the next week, I was working for the 700 Club.

 

On your website homepage, I pulled a quote from your welcome message, “my training comes from dealing with crazy people in a crazy life, giving me a plethora of stories to share.” Do these experiences form the basis or inspiration for your new book?

 

They do in a sense. I never knew that my life was going to unfold the way that it did. I was the youngest co-host the 700 Club has ever had. I was 27 years old when I started and in my early 40s when I left. A year before I left, Myles Munroe had a word for me. I would sit in my office and my heart just hurt all the time. I would have different people coming to my office all the time and these Christians, they would just share their heart and their issues and I was like, man, there are so many hurting people. And sometimes in Christian television, we have this formula, and the formula is, your life is horrible, you find Jesus and your life is great. And that’s not true.

And so, I started to hear a lot of people’s stories and I said Lord, I just want your heart. A year later, the Lord had me out on my own completely by myself in the wilderness, no job, no money, no friends, no nothing. I was at rock bottom. I was baffled and I was bewildered. I said, okay Lord, are you mad at me, what in the world happened? I would do Bible studies in my house and I would walk my dog and pray all the time. One day I was walking my dog and the lord said, Kristi, how can you minister to the nations if you can’t minister to the people next door? So God walks me through a series of tests where He would say, “Go knock on that person’s door and pray for them.” As I would pray, Holy Spirit would fall and move in a big way in that person’s life. Another day the Lord would say, “Go knock on that person’s door and clean their house. It’s a single mother she needs help.” I would say Lord, I’m a single mother and I need help. Next you know, I’m on my hands and knees scrubbing dog urine. It was stories like that God used to humble me, break me and to more importantly, give me his heart. He had to remove my stone heart, the hardened heart and the pride and arrogance that I had when I was on television.

What I didn’t realize was, it was really easy to sit on a set and tell the world to trust in God when I had everything at my fingertips. It was really easy to have the joy of the Lord, when life was good. God got me to the point where I had to come to the end of myself to realize that joy is not contingent upon any circumstances. The true joy of the Lord is when you’re in the presence of God and oftentimes what gets us in the presence of God, are the trials and tribulations that hit us. God had to show me what true joy and true happiness was. For two years, I had no job, no money, I was living off of my son’s college fund and our savings accounts. I cried for five days straight. I thought that God had ignored me, I thought that God had forgotten me, I thought that I had failed somebody or the Lord. I was disheartened beyond belief. I prayed and fasted and did everything we would do. My mother would call and try to console me, nothing worked. My sister was going through a divorce and I told my mom to remind her when God did this for me…and remember the time when He did that and the other. And I started to think back of the times that I had experienced the hand of God in my life. The more I started to remember, the more the heavy weight was lifting off me and a joy started to well up in my spirit and that spirit of oppression started to leave. And before long, I started to laugh. Thus, the concept of the book.

 

In the book, Talk Yourself Happy, you offer us tips to talk ourselves happy. How important are these pointers to the believer?

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It’s everything. So many of us get so disheartened and discouraged by our circumstances, by what we see or don’t have. So, oftentimes, because God is Spirit, we visibly can’t see Him. So the only way we can truly see God, is by seeing His handprint in our lives. And saying, “God healed me, remember when God healed me…remember when He touched me…remember when He protected me…and God did this and God did that. It’s connecting with God on a personal, intimate level. That no matter how I preach to a person or how much they sit in church, they’re never going to know what the love of Jesus Christ is unless they experience it. Those tips are vital to our walk because it all revolves around experiencing Jesus Christ for yourself. Point blank period!

 

And what would you say to the Christians who would say God is more interested in building our character, often through pain and suffering, and not in our happiness?

 

You know that’s interesting because I did this interview and the interviewer was focused so much on the word happiness. She couldn’t get past it. She said Kristi, it’s not about happiness, it’s about joy of the Lord. And I said, I agree. However, we’ve got to recognize that there are over 27 verses in the bible that talk about happiness. The Greek word for joy, is happy. For instance, there’s a Scripture, my favorite all time Scripture: “Whosoever trusts in the Lord, happy is he (Proverbs 16:20). Here’s the deal, when we trust God with our life, and when we abide in Christ, live in Christ, we get so much more than happiness, we get peace, joy, wisdom, direction, love, and I don’t know about you, all those things make me happy. If we look up the word, joy in Webster’s dictionary, it says, “to be happy.”

 

Producer, host, reporter and add “author” to the endless list. What’s next on the horizon for Kristi Watts? When should we expect to see Talk Yourself Happy in stores?

 

The book comes out January 3rd and there’s a whole line up of shows that I’ll be on, doing a host of interviews which I’m so excited about. I also do women’s conferences. One day, I might be back on television, if that’s what the Lord wants. Here’s the truth beyond the truth, my heart is just to encourage and love people right where they are. To get people to know who God is, not based upon who I tell them He is. But for them to know who He is for themselves, and know the Person of God in Jesus Christ and the Power of God through the Holy Spirit.

 

Kristi Watts website: http://www.kristiwattsministries.com


Feardom ~ Experiencing Fear on your Journey to Freedom

What is freedom? Take a moment and think. What is freedom to you? Is it the state of not being enslaved or imprisoned? Is it the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint? If you’re not in prison, you probably consider yourself free.  Living in America, the “Land of the Free”, you’re free. Is that freedom? Yes, for a lot of people, but there are some who are not in prison, and still feel enslaved and others who live in America and feel bound. Freedom can be considered relative, which means everyone has a different thought on what freedom is for them.  One adult male, Clarence answered, “Freedom is life without fear”, while a teenage girl, Natalie answered, “Being able to do what I want, when I want”.  So again I ask, What is freedom to you?

Christians have been contemplating that question for a long time. Fortunately, the Bible helps us discover freedom as a seemingly, joyful experience through Christ in the following scriptures:

 

So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. (John 8:36)

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. (2 Co 3:17)

It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. (Gal 5:1)

 

People will have a different definition of freedom concerning their own lives and journeys. If Jesus sets Clarence free, will he live a life without fear? Will Natalie be able to do what she wants, when she wants where the Spirit of the Lord is? When we gain freedom through Christ, after years of living in bondage, it doesn’t take away the trepidation along the way. Gaining freedom can be a wonderful experience but maintaining it can be more distressing and terrifying than you can imagine.

 

Don’t be afraid to be afraid.

 

The sight was so terrifying that Moses said, "I am trembling with fear." [Heb 12:21 NIV]

 

God's prophet and friend, Moses was afraid. So afraid, that he trembled but he still had enough strength to encourage those he was leading to not be afraid.


The Israelites that followed a terrified Moses were afraid.
(Everybody was afraid!)

 

Moses said to the people, "Do not be afraid. God has come to test you, so that the fear of God will be with you to keep you from sinning." [Exo 20:20 NIV]

 

If you have gained your freedom, learn to walk and remain in it. It won’t be easy. 

 

As Pharaoh approached, the Israelites looked up, and there were the Egyptians, marching after them. They were terrified and cried out to the LORD. They said to Moses, "Was it because there were no graves in Egypt that you brought us to the desert to die? What have you done to us by bringing us out of Egypt? Didn't we say to you in Egypt, 'Leave us alone; let us serve the Egyptians'? It would have been better for us to serve the Egyptians than to die in the desert!" Moses answered the people, "Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still." Then the LORD said to Moses, "Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on. [Exo 14:10-15 NIV]

 

 

 

Freedom is not only a one time incident. You sang, you cried and leaped for joy on your way out of bondage. That’s not it or all. You still have a journey to God’s promises now. During your freedom journey, don’t assume that you won’t experience intimidation, fearful situations and threatening life decisions.  When you do, God is telling you, don’t go back, don’t be confined, keep it moving. 

 

God is telling you.....Move on. 


Oh and yes, through Christ, you have been set free from bondage, the decision to willingly sin, and you are still a slave, but only to Christ and righteousness now. Don’t be so afraid of paralyzing fear that it keeps you stagnate and sinning. Be afraid, but keep it moving


You have been set free from sin and have become slaves to righteousness. [Rom 6:18 NIV]


Don't be afraid of fear. If you have to walk in FEARdom to get to FREEdom…DO IT!
Experiencing fear on your journey to freedom is completely normal.
Don't let it stop you!

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Author: Rev. Melanie M. Thigpen

@HisLadyMelanie

 


Moms Making a Difference - Nancy Parlette - Healthy Living

Nancy Parlette is a digestive health specialist and president of Healthy Living Strategies LLC, where she shares her passion to ENERGIZE YOU FOR LIVING WITH NUTRITION!

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Nancy’s certifications and her Master of Science in Human Nutrition, makes her the perfect authority to help you live a more healthy life.  Watch Nancy in action. Click here.

 

Check her out at - www.nancyparlette.com


Moms Making a Difference - Lauretta Pierce - “IF GOD CAN USE A COOKIE…”

LAURETTA PIERCE – “IF GOD CAN USE A COOKIE…”

Lauretta Pierce is the CEO and founder of Covenant Cookies, Inc., based in Atlanta, Georgia. She is a mother, an advocate for domestic violence, an author, speaker, and a philanthropist.

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Lauretta’s backstory is anything but glamorous or picture perfect. Yet, out of her harrowing life experience came the idea for her thriving ministry and business. Covenant Cookies are gourmet fortune cookies filled with Scriptures and uplifting messages. An idea she says God gave to her at the lowest point in her life.

As a teenager, Lauretta suffered a stroke and endured ferocious domestic violence in her relationship. One incident was so horrifying that the skin on one side of her face was literally peeled off and she was left paralyzed for a year. After giving her life to Christ, things went from bad to worse; as her only daughter was diagnosed with a brain tumor, which left her blind and wheelchair-bound. Due to taking much needed time off to attend her daughter’s radiation treatments and regular hospital visits, she was soon fired from her job and lost her home.

During this time Lauretta began to desperately seek after God and the things of God. She would literally sprawl out before Him and stay in His Word morning, noon and night. Lauretta was dyslexic and could not read the Bible chronologically. Often, she would end up mixing up all her reading and this often left her confused. The way she was able to read the Bible was to target and write down specific Scriptures, which spoke particularly to her circumstances. Although hope for her daughter’s recovery seemed so dismal that it appeared death was near, Lauretta persistently prayed the Scriptures on healing over her daughter. Within months, her daughter recovered fully and was admitted into university in Atlanta. Lauretta relocated with her.

Lauretta received divine inspiration and all Scriptures she had previously written on sheets of paper and napkins during her periods of adversity, are now inserted in fortune cookies to inspire and encourage people all over the world. Covenant Cookies, which now operates two manufacturing plants based in Atlanta Georgia, and California, are available in various delightful flavors and stunning designs. She has committed her life to advocating for homeless women and victims of domestic violence. This year, Lauretta received her Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters. Her philanthropy, advocacy work and business, have earned her several awards, which include but are not limited to, ‘One Smart Cookie Award’, ‘Dr. Martin Luther King Award’, and ABC television ‘Person of the Week’ award. She currently shares her amazing testimony

Lauretta is a living testimony of the goodness, mercy and grace of God. She shares her amazing testament wherever she goes and has recently been on Trinity broadcasting Network (TBN) and Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN). Her mission is to inspire the world – one cookie at a time.

“If God can use a Cookie to change such a broken life as mine, think of what God can do for you,” says Lauretta.

Watch her testimony on the 700 CLUB. Click here.

Written by, Frances Butler

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Mothers Making a Difference - Dr. Vivian Jackson

This week's heroine of the faith is Dr. Vivian M. Jackson. 

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Dr. Vivian Jackson pulls on anecdotes from her 35 years of marriage and decades in marriage ministry to help mend relationships.  Though she is a prolific writer, her most treasured jewels are her two beautiful daughters. Dr. Vivian is known as ‘The Marriage Doctor’ and writes regularly for Gospel Today magazine.  Her books include: Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Surviving and Thriving in the Midst of Crisis and Radical Praise: It’s Not Business as Usual.  Dr. Jackson is a sought after speaker with nationally recognized marriage workshops which build communication between the sexes.  www.the-marriage-doctor.com

 

Here's Dr. V in action...

 


Mothers Making a Difference

This month we celebrate strong women who are making a mark for the Kingdom of God.  Ordinary, every day women who are set apart for greatness because of their dedication to the faith.  Each week we will highlight these unsung heroines and I hope you will get a glimpse at these lives - lived for Christ.

Our first heroine is Sister Frances Butler.

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Frances Butler is an award-winning creative writer, filmmaker, and radio presenter. She is a commanding raconteur and performer. Her current writing projects include, Living Wisely magazine, TV critic for Christian Post, dramatic screenplay for BBC television and, adapting her latest theater play for radio.  Frances is a fresh face and rising star on the media landscape. In all of her accomplishments her greatest triumph is raising her wonderful son.  Frances often lends her vocal talents and endearing British accent to television and radio.  She was recently awarded the Hometown Media Award for her video segment on aid to Africa.

Click here to see the award winning piece.

 




 

 


Nashawn Knows How to Throw A Party - A VISION Party

Earlier this year we had the pleasure of sitting down with this curly headed bundle of joy to gather some insights into how we can each bring our visions to pass. Nashawn Turner is a celebrated author, speaker, transformational life coach and visionary. When you first meet Nashawn you are greeted with a cheerful voice and bouncy curls. Her whole presence just says sunshine and joy. She exudes the ‘I can make it’ persona.

Nashawn

The author of two life changing books: Thriving Not Just Surviving and

The ESP Marriage, Nashawn encourages readers to dig deep to root our problems and prepare for a successful life. This multi-talented writer is the winner of such honors and recognition as the 2008 Christian Choice Book Award for her writings which explore intimacy issues that block your blessing in the bedroom and the boardroom.

As the President of Uniquely Designed Coaching, LLC she often gives conference goers tools to Empower them to live their Uniquely Design Life to the fullest. This power broker knows how to throw a dynamic Vision Party that will move you into the next step of your destiny.

Here are some questions we asked this game changer to help our readers get a jump start on the New Year.

LW: Nashawn, You often use a ‘vision board’ in your seminars. Why do you say we need a vision board?

NT: “One of the things I’ve grasped hold of is what God talks about in Habbakuk 2:3 “Write the vision….” It’s so important for people to have a vision and a vision board. It makes it more clear and real plain. You know exactly what you are believing for and working towards. A vision board is the coming attractions to your life. It helps you to know where you’re going.”

LW: What is the correlation, if any, between coaching and having a vision board?

NT: “As a coach, our number 1 goal is to help you identify and gain clarity about your vision. We help you to stay accountable to that vision by supporting you so that you can win! So that vision board allows you to articulate that vision visually. It becomes a powerful tool to help you to engage with that vision and to be able to capture that vision to keep you motivated and to inspire you to action.”

LW: What are 3 or 4 tips for people who should have a vision board?

NT:    1. A vision board should be connected to your values.

        2. A vision board inspires you for more. Be able to envision God’s plan for you.

        3.  A vision board activates your faith! Consider God’s promises for your life.

LW: What are a few pointers for people who have begun work on a vision board and need encouragement to continue?

NT: “You have to keep the vision before you. I tell people to put it up somewhere you will see it every day whether it’s in your bedroom or your office.”

LW: Tell us a bit about what you do and how people can benefit from the service you provide.

NT: “I am a transformational life coach and empowerment expert working with women to take control of their personal and professional lives to gain clarity and focus to maximize their potential. I help them to see the ‘Bigness’ of their dream in order to activate a more abundant living; and an unprecedented life that’s in line with their God given design. I help them to get unstuck.”

For more from Nashawn Turner check out her website and social media.

www.nashawnturner.com

Twitter: @Nashawn_Turner

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