Posted by: authorjmg | April 27, 2013

From Passive to Passion

Image

Jana M. Gamble

3/22/2013

From Passive to Passion

     Many people go through life without caring about what they intake in their bodies such as soda, beer, candy, and trans fats to name a few let alone thinking too much on what will happen to this shell we call a body after their time on earth is up and they pass on to a new beginning. Although very unfortunate, death is not a subject that families normally discuss over dinner and is often a very difficult situation to open up about planning for prior to dealing with an actual occurrence. Fifteen years ago I was at the license bureau in Moberly, MO where I grew up and after passing my driver’s exam was asked if I wanted to be an Organ Donor and without hesitation I replied yes. While I waited for my first shiny new license with the perfect picture on it, I wasn’t fazed in any way by the responses of others being helped that were asked that very same question. Now when I walk in and wait in the long, slow moving line at the license bureau my heart aches and my ears feel as if they are bleeding with sadness from the responses to the Organ Donor question that when answered “no” sends a shrill down my spine like the times that someone has ran their nails down the chalkboard or their teeth across a fork.

     My life has completely changed after having my first hand experiences with the process of becoming a Living Organ Donor. Although being an Organ Donor was never the “question” the reasons why I wanted to be a donor have changed. This process birthed a great passion for encouraging others to be a both Living Donors and to donate their organs and tissue following their death. I now challenge my community to live healthier to lessen the health disparities, especially those associated with minorities, to enable them to be potentially considered as an Organ Donor. Families should openly discuss their opinions about being an Organ at times when everyone is healthy and not wait for a tragic accident or death of a loved one occurs. My new found passion for being an Organ Donor encourages our community to #Live2Give seeing that through the gift of life both donor and recipients will live on because of the donor’s selflessness and generosity.

     The decision to donate life for many people is blocked by the various myths that have been wrongly passed throughout society and down from generations before us. For me there were no myths in the way of my choice to become an Organ Donor at the age of 16 while I was on cloud nine from getting my license and being able to drive by myself for the first time. My decision was like second nature, and I never even questioned how the donation procedure would be done or thought about what my Catholic faith’s view on this subject I just committed, which meant I was still an uninformed donor on a list. Growing up, either I wasn’t informed about donation and transplant process because there wasn’t enough awareness in the small town that I grew up in, or because after our family experienced losses there was never a discussion about whether the ones that passed were Organ Donors. Death was a difficult subject to discuss, but I do appreciate my mother always communicating to us that she desires to donate her organs, be cremated, her ashes spread on the sand near the ocean and for each of her children to keep an urn of some of her ashes. My mother’s willingness to share this with her children outside of a traumatic experience will allow her children to have peace about their decisions when the inevitable time in their life occurs which many people don’t choose to do.

     Before I became so well acquainted with the organ donor process I never even thought once about these myths such as not committing to donate due to religious beliefs, the thought that you can’t go to heaven unless your whole in body, thinking that if something fatal is occurring that the doctors will not preserve your life just to be able to utilize your organs and tissue for someone that is on the donor list. Now I know that these are exactly what I stated before- they are myths with facts and statistics to back the truth behind them up. For example, the facts behind the religious questioning pertaining to organ donation is that the process is actually accepted and consistent with most religions such as Catholicism, Protestantism, Islam and most of the branches of Judaism. The website OrganDonor.gov provides resources and information to educate individuals about this and other myths like I previously listed.

     Myths and belief systems come somewhat from outward influences in our lives. The moments that connected me with the passion for Organ Donor Awareness began over 7 years ago. Sitting crisscrossed on the plush carpeted floor with her legs curled up at her side in a pretty little white spring dress with blue anchors on it, a young woman sat in complete distress as she share her needs for prayer at the Women of Excellence prayer meeting that I was attending. I had never really met this woman before that I could remember, but very well could have waved hello in the passing inside our giant dome shaped church that has over 7,000 members. The very moment she spoke I know God gave me both the great privilege and responsibility to befriend her- not just for a season, but for a lifetime. This is where the reasons I had to become an Organ Donor would forever change.

     The young woman, a mother of 5 uniquely beautiful children was in a desolate marriage to a man that was battling his decision to move on with his life alone and come out of the closet, introduced herself to me as Aminah. Aminah and I, as well as our combined 7 children instantly clicked beginning friendships amongst one another that nothing could ever separate. A few years after this beautiful friendship was established Aminah expressed to me that her father was in kidney failure and was preparing to be on the Organ Donor List and with that he was already trying to recruit potential donors. One day while riding in Aminah’s vehicle together, her dad called and Aminah answered it on speaker phone. Al, her dad, told me about his need for a kidney transplant confirming what his daughter had shared with me and then proceeded to say, “So I might need your kidney. Would you be willing to donate?” Even though his voice inflection gave off a humorous vibe there was no doubt in any of our minds that this was not a joking matter. Without hesitation I told him that I was completely interested and would do whatever I could to help for my best friend’s dad. For over a year every time I would see Al or be around him he would ask “are you still going to give Daddoo your kidney?” in a joking matter and nonchalantly would say “of course dad!”

     In 2011, Aminah’s dad, Al going to dialysis 3 days a week became more concerned about his need for a kidney transplant due to his continued kidney failure that had left him at this point with 5% function in one and 8% function in the other kidney. Al and I started meeting about once a week to have lunch and he would educate me on the process of becoming a Living Organ Donor. The Nashville Veteran’s Administration (VA) Hospital where he chose to have his transplant because of their success rate, provided Al with literature and information to share with prospective donors and he shared all of this with me. Our father-daughter friendship grew over these few months while he was educating me about the donor process as well as sharing life experiences especially the war stories from Vietnam and the affects that Agent Orange had on himself and so many other Veterans.

    Finally Al was on the list to receive a kidney transplant and his wife and 4 of their 5 children went to be tested to see if they would be a match with the conclusion that none of them were. During this time my best friend and his oldest daughter Aminah was going through a difficult divorce and was physically and emotionally unable to start the testing process- this is when Al called me. He called thanking me for the friendship that we had nurtured and for considering being a donor for him; giving me complete freedom to make the choice of my own but asked if I was ready to move forward. I was given the name and number of the Nashville VA contact and immediately called to see if I could be a possible kidney donor for Aminah’s dad. After one short call, faxing my blood donor card and license to the Nashville VA two hours later I received a call back informing me that they wanted to fly me down to their hospital less than a week later on September 11th, 2011 to find out if I would be a match for Al and donate my kidney.

     Never in the 29 years of my life had I it even crossed my mind that I would give a piece of myself to another human being while I was still alive besides the pieces of my heart I gave away through relationships but nothing in the literal sense. I was a single mother of two children, but I had just parted ways from my job at the time, therefore my schedule was completely open to begin this journey. The greatest peace was upon me during this entire time- I knew that I made the right choice and knew in my heart that everything was going to work out perfectly just as it was destined to. After four trips back and forth to Nashville and a laundry list of testing the Transplant team was informing me that I was a match for Al. There was deliberation that took place over a month’s time and the final decision was made that I would not be allowed to donate because I carry the sickle cell trait.

     Shortly after our heartbreaking news Aminah decided to step up and was tested as well to donate to her dad. She was a match and on July 18th, 2012 she, her mom, dad and I went through the experience of a Living Organ Transplant. This experience changed my life! It was the turning point that caused my passiveness about Organ Donation to a passion that I share with my best friend. After going through this beautiful emotional voyage Aminah and I started a charity called Living Sweet with a mission of “Igniting the change that inspires our communities to live healthier, give more and donate life.”

 

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Posted by: authorjmg | April 27, 2013

From Passive to Passion

ImageJana M. Gamble

3/22/2013

From Passive to Passion

     Many people go through life without caring about what they intake in their bodies such as soda, beer, candy, and trans fats to name a few let alone thinking too much on what will happen to this shell we call a body after their time on earth is up and they pass on to a new beginning. Although very unfortunate, death is not a subject that families normally discuss over dinner and is often a very difficult situation to open up about planning for prior to dealing with an actual occurrence. Fifteen years ago I was at the license bureau in Moberly, MO where I grew up and after passing my driver’s exam was asked if I wanted to be an Organ Donor and without hesitation I replied yes. While I waited for my first shiny new license with the perfect picture on it, I wasn’t fazed in any way by the responses of others being helped that were asked that very same question. Now when I walk in and wait in the long, slow moving line at the license bureau my heart aches and my ears feel as if they are bleeding with sadness from the responses to the Organ Donor question that when answered “no” sends a shrill down my spine like the times that someone has ran their nails down the chalkboard or their teeth across a fork.

     My life has completely changed after having my first hand experiences with the process of becoming a Living Organ Donor. Although being an Organ Donor was never the “question” the reasons why I wanted to be a donor have changed. This process birthed a great passion for encouraging others to be a both Living Donors and to donate their organs and tissue following their death. I now challenge my community to live healthier to lessen the health disparities, especially those associated with minorities, to enable them to be potentially considered as an Organ Donor. Families should openly discuss their opinions about being an Organ at times when everyone is healthy and not wait for a tragic accident or death of a loved one occurs. My new found passion for being an Organ Donor encourages our community to #Live2Give seeing that through the gift of life both donor and recipients will live on because of the donor’s selflessness and generosity.

     The decision to donate life for many people is blocked by the various myths that have been wrongly passed throughout society and down from generations before us. For me there were no myths in the way of my choice to become an Organ Donor at the age of 16 while I was on cloud nine from getting my license and being able to drive by myself for the first time. My decision was like second nature, and I never even questioned how the donation procedure would be done or thought about what my Catholic faith’s view on this subject I just committed, which meant I was still an uninformed donor on a list. Growing up, either I wasn’t informed about donation and transplant process because there wasn’t enough awareness in the small town that I grew up in, or because after our family experienced losses there was never a discussion about whether the ones that passed were Organ Donors. Death was a difficult subject to discuss, but I do appreciate my mother always communicating to us that she desires to donate her organs, be cremated, her ashes spread on the sand near the ocean and for each of her children to keep an urn of some of her ashes. My mother’s willingness to share this with her children outside of a traumatic experience will allow her children to have peace about their decisions when the inevitable time in their life occurs which many people don’t choose to do.

     Before I became so well acquainted with the organ donor process I never even thought once about these myths such as not committing to donate due to religious beliefs, the thought that you can’t go to heaven unless your whole in body, thinking that if something fatal is occurring that the doctors will not preserve your life just to be able to utilize your organs and tissue for someone that is on the donor list. Now I know that these are exactly what I stated before- they are myths with facts and statistics to back the truth behind them up. For example, the facts behind the religious questioning pertaining to organ donation is that the process is actually accepted and consistent with most religions such as Catholicism, Protestantism, Islam and most of the branches of Judaism. The website OrganDonor.gov provides resources and information to educate individuals about this and other myths like I previously listed.

     Myths and belief systems come somewhat from outward influences in our lives. The moments that connected me with the passion for Organ Donor Awareness began over 7 years ago. Sitting crisscrossed on the plush carpeted floor with her legs curled up at her side in a pretty little white spring dress with blue anchors on it, a young woman sat in complete distress as she share her needs for prayer at the Women of Excellence prayer meeting that I was attending. I had never really met this woman before that I could remember, but very well could have waved hello in the passing inside our giant dome shaped church that has over 7,000 members. The very moment she spoke I know God gave me both the great privilege and responsibility to befriend her- not just for a season, but for a lifetime. This is where the reasons I had to become an Organ Donor would forever change.

     The young woman, a mother of 5 uniquely beautiful children was in a desolate marriage to a man that was battling his decision to move on with his life alone and come out of the closet, introduced herself to me as Aminah. Aminah and I, as well as our combined 7 children instantly clicked beginning friendships amongst one another that nothing could ever separate. A few years after this beautiful friendship was established Aminah expressed to me that her father was in kidney failure and was preparing to be on the Organ Donor List and with that he was already trying to recruit potential donors. One day while riding in Aminah’s vehicle together, her dad called and Aminah answered it on speaker phone. Al, her dad, told me about his need for a kidney transplant confirming what his daughter had shared with me and then proceeded to say, “So I might need your kidney. Would you be willing to donate?” Even though his voice inflection gave off a humorous vibe there was no doubt in any of our minds that this was not a joking matter. Without hesitation I told him that I was completely interested and would do whatever I could to help for my best friend’s dad. For over a year every time I would see Al or be around him he would ask “are you still going to give Daddoo your kidney?” in a joking matter and nonchalantly would say “of course dad!”

     In 2011, Aminah’s dad, Al going to dialysis 3 days a week became more concerned about his need for a kidney transplant due to his continued kidney failure that had left him at this point with 5% function in one and 8% function in the other kidney. Al and I started meeting about once a week to have lunch and he would educate me on the process of becoming a Living Organ Donor. The Nashville Veteran’s Administration (VA) Hospital where he chose to have his transplant because of their success rate, provided Al with literature and information to share with prospective donors and he shared all of this with me. Our father-daughter friendship grew over these few months while he was educating me about the donor process as well as sharing life experiences especially the war stories from Vietnam and the affects that Agent Orange had on himself and so many other Veterans.

    Finally Al was on the list to receive a kidney transplant and his wife and 4 of their 5 children went to be tested to see if they would be a match with the conclusion that none of them were. During this time my best friend and his oldest daughter Aminah was going through a difficult divorce and was physically and emotionally unable to start the testing process- this is when Al called me. He called thanking me for the friendship that we had nurtured and for considering being a donor for him; giving me complete freedom to make the choice of my own but asked if I was ready to move forward. I was given the name and number of the Nashville VA contact and immediately called to see if I could be a possible kidney donor for Aminah’s dad. After one short call, faxing my blood donor card and license to the Nashville VA two hours later I received a call back informing me that they wanted to fly me down to their hospital less than a week later on September 11th, 2011 to find out if I would be a match for Al and donate my kidney.

     Never in the 29 years of my life had I it even crossed my mind that I would give a piece of myself to another human being while I was still alive besides the pieces of my heart I gave away through relationships but nothing in the literal sense. I was a single mother of two children, but I had just parted ways from my job at the time, therefore my schedule was completely open to begin this journey. The greatest peace was upon me during this entire time- I knew that I made the right choice and knew in my heart that everything was going to work out perfectly just as it was destined to. After four trips back and forth to Nashville and a laundry list of testing the Transplant team was informing me that I was a match for Al. There was deliberation that took place over a month’s time and the final decision was made that I would not be allowed to donate because I carry the sickle cell trait.

     Shortly after our heartbreaking news Aminah decided to step up and was tested as well to donate to her dad. She was a match and on July 18th, 2012 she, her mom, dad and I went through the experience of a Living Organ Transplant. This experience changed my life! It was the turning point that caused my passiveness about Organ Donation to a passion that I share with my best friend. After going through this beautiful emotional voyage Aminah and I started a charity called Living Sweet with a mission of “Igniting the change that inspires our communities to live healthier, give more and donate life.”

 

Posted by: authorjmg | March 30, 2012

Reflections

Good morning fam!

This is multitasking at its best lol! I’m on my walk, in His presence and blogging at the same time. Today I just want to communicate with you how good God is and how perfect His timing is. We CAN do all things through Christ that strengthens us!!

We’re all on this journey called life-praying, seeking, finding not only our purpose but balance through it all. Today I feel like I am in a great place. Now I’m far from where I desire to be in my business, financially, relationally and spiritually. But God!! I know in my spirit that I am right where He wants me to be!

God has blessed me in so many ways and one of which is through my many gifts/talents. At this point in my life, at 30 yrs. young I have already decided that I will not bend nor waiver any longer for I know the greatness that He has inside of me and created me for! This mentality has changed my life. Now that I’m open to whatever, whenever, whatever God has for me I have a favor, joy, peace and feel alove that I can’t explain nor could be attained from anyone but the Most High! He has been positioning me and orchestrating the most favorable situations for my children and I that I can’t help but give Him glory for so that everyone will hear it!

With more than 5 titles and endless responsibilities right now He is making it all possible. I am growing every day and continuing to learn to maximize more of my time within this 24 hours a day we’ve been blessed with. In that time I’ve also found time to bless Him, Give Back to Me (thru “Me Time” and exercise), to keep my children involved in multiple activities, to Give Back to our Community and attend the best church in all the world (COTR) twice a week! I am amazed by you God!! There is none like you! Through you all things are possible and I thank you for loving me with that agape- unfailing love!

I pray that this blesses you and encourages you as He does for me everyday! I love you fam! Be blessed and keep #LivingSweet!

From the bubbles,
Jana M. Gamble

Posted by: authorjmg | December 14, 2011

Are you seeking Him today?

Good morning fam!

Sometimes you just have to sit back and bask in His Glory. Sometimes you have to drop what you’re doing and acknowledge His presence and let Him move in, with and through your mind, body and spirit. Sometimes you have to let go and just let God use you.

I just felt a tugging in my spirit today to blog. Actually this morning after I turned on my Praise & Worship on my Pandora station on the manifestation pulled me out from under my covers and I simply had to use my body to praise Him. I danced hard this morning and almost sweated out my hair lol. It’s His love and His presence that consumes me! It’s a connection, a relationship like no other that I never want to part from. As I began to write a song came in my spirit and that’s what you will read below. For now you can read it. I was contemplating while I was dancing this morning about a few of the great gifts that I have been blessed with such as dancing and if it’s imperative to use your gifts before men or is it enough to simply bless the Lord with alone… And such as writing this song and me singing it by myself to bless Him even if no one else ever hears it… Just something to think about. I want to multiply the gifts He gave me and don’t ever want to leave them buried for them to then be stripped from me. Food for thought I think.

I can feel presence round me

I can feel your warm embrace

And I know your love surrounds me

I just live to seek your face

Lord I thank you for giving me Grace!

Lord I thank you for giving me Grace!

 

I can feel presence round me

I can feel your warm embrace

And I know your love surrounds me

I just live to seek your face

Lord I thank you for giving me Grace!

Lord I thank you for giving me Grace!

 

I pray that my words encourage and inspire you today. Continue to walk and allow Him to carry you when you need it. Love on Him today! It is Wednesday and that means even if you can’t make it you can join us at Church on the Rock Live Streaming at 7pm CST at www.cotrexperience.org!

I love you fam!

Today bless someone that least expects it from you! You are blessed to be a blessing today!

From the bubbles,

Jana M. Gamble

 

*Don’t forget you don’t want to miss Aminah Williams and I on our show Living Sweet every Tuesday 3p-4p CST on http://www.iwatchradio.com!! You can also watch some great videos on our YouTube Channel LivingSweetONiWatch!!*

Posted by: authorjmg | December 6, 2011

Living Sweet on www.iwatchradio.com Live Streaming at 3p CST!!

Good morning fam!

This is the day the Lord has made! Let us rejoice and be glad in it! My spirit is filled with joy today. I am so excited and so blessed to be able to share the camera with one of my best friends Aminah Williams as we debut our show today Living Sweet on iwatchradio.com! Each show will be fabulously filled with Giving Back, Special Guests, Music, Poetry, Food, and always tons of fun! Our show will stream live from our official Facebook page, from the iwatchradio.com Facebook page AND from http://www.iwatchradio.com every Tuesday from 3p-4p CST! You can also watch the archives if you miss it.

We have been on an amazing journey over these last 8 weeks together in Giving Back to our Community and we are delighted to share both our story and this movement with the world! God is good! We pray that this show will inspire you and bless you every time that you tune in. We encourage you to send us your videos of spoken word performances and you and your family/business Giving Back and it just might end up on our show!!

Be encouraged today because you already have the victory!

Tastefully Giving Back to our Community,

Jana M. Gamble

I couldn’t give him my kidney, but he’ll forever have my friendship!

Hi fam,

I am sharing this journey with you not for any form of recognition or applause, but to bring awareness to the needs both to educate ourselves about our health and to encourage others to consider organ donation. To all my family and friends that were praying for us during our journey- thank you!

Any person that knows me well knows that I am a giver by nature. Heck, I even wrote a book about giving called 107 Ways to Give When You Think You Have Nothing to Give. About one year ago I was with one of my best friends, Aminah Williams, who I had known for about 4 years. Aminah and I have been there for each other through life’s ups and downs always standing along the other’s side being supportive through any possible way we can. I love Aminah with all my heart and would and will do anything for her and her children.

So on this particular day that we were together we ran into her father Al Atkins. Prior to this occasion I had only been around Al a couple of times. He proceeded to tell us that his kidneys were bad and that he was in hopes of being placed on the donor list soon and that if he became eligible for a transplant that he wanted us to consider being tested as well. Aminah and I both said of course we would! So as the months past it was almost a joke that every time I saw Al or was with Aminah when he called that he’d remind me, “don’t forget, I may need you to get tested to be my donor.” I always assured him that I would do whatever it takes to help if at all possible.

In 2011 I have really gone through some interesting and pretty difficult seasons. At the beginning of August Al invited me to lunch to talk about the possibility of being a kidney donor for him. We sat down at Olive Garden and went through the packet of information from the Nashville VA Medical Center that he provided me. I went home that day and left a message for Mrs. Johnson in Nashville to get the process moving. As the story continues at this point both of my children had been away from me almost the entire summer which was very difficult on us and had just returned home, my long distance relationship was washing down the drain, and then to top it off I had to part ways with my job on August 19th. Life is funny though, as I was transitioning from my previous employer and moving out on my own I thought “God works in mysterious ways- what a perfect time for me it would be if I am able to be a donor for Al!”

After playing phone tag for two weeks Mrs. Johnson called me back. It was approximately 12:30 p.m. when we had a brief phone interview then she asked what my blood type was and I told her O+. Next she answered all of my questions then asked for me to fax verification of my blood type which was my blood donor card. I had been cleaning a few days prior and came across my donor card so I purposely placed it somewhere where I could find it. Um, yeah so when I went to locate it, it was no where to be found. I got a bit discouraged for a moment but then I prayed that the Holy Spirit would lead me to it. Meanwhile I was distracted by my other best friend Sheri Williams who called and invited me to IHOP.

After I backed into my parking spot, as I turned my head straight my eyes were drawn to my ashtray. I was so excited that I almost forgot to put the car in park. Laying right there in the ashtray backside up was my Red Cross Donor Card. I jumped out of the car with excitement and had a great brunch with Sheri. Following our lunch we headed over to Office Depot to fax my card to the VA. On the sheet I sent over I asked for them to confirm that it was received by phone. A few minutes later my phone rang and Ms. Rita, my new representative, informed me that the fax arrived.

With a full stomach and wondering mind I headed home to go get back to some business. Shortly after 2:30 p.m. I received another call from the VA. This call was a surprising one. The lady on the phone asked how quickly I would be able to travel to Nashville, Tennessee for further testing! I was taken back from the speedy process. She suggested September 11th, 2011 and I agreed.

 

To be continued…

Watch us on Fox 2 News with Tim Ezell talking about 10 Weeks of Giving in the St. Louis Community!

Live a Lifestyle of a Giver!

From the bubbles,

Jana M. Gamble

Posted by: authorjmg | November 16, 2011

Get out of your way!

Good morning fam!

Last night I was blessed to be a part of our Midwest Professional Women’s Group Meeting, a program of Dress for Success Midwest. There are a group of about 16 women that are called the Leading Ladies and we have the privilege of the wonderful Karen Hoffman facilitating us through “The 2011 Joy of Goals.” Almost everyone in the group is progressing either personally and professionally with so many great things to share. It is so exciting to hear the success stories of each of them not only because it inspires you that you can do the same, but also because we have a very strong sisterhood that binds us together.

Every single person has 24 hours in their day. All of us have opportunities both positive and… not so positive that come before us every day. Each of us have to make decisions on a day to day basis that determine what we do and the direction we will be heading. Even though I personally had many praise reports to share I know that I have so much more that I need to accomplish. Yes, I’m very ambitious. Yes, I have many gifts and talents, but I also know if I don’t use them than not only can I loose them but they can be taken away! Right in the Good Book in Matthew 25 we can learn what God intends for us to do with our talents.

Here are some questions I am asking of myself and believe that you should ask to yourself. We need to not only encourage others to grow but you have to be your biggest fan! If you don’t buy into what you are selling or promoting and believe it to be the best then why would you expect anyone else to do so? !

 

  • Do you have a vision board?
  • When did you make your vision board?
  • How often do you look at your vision board?
  • Have you accomplished any of the goals that you see on your board?
  • Are your visions specific?
  • Are you creating S.M.A.R.T. Goals for yourself? (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timely)
  • Do you have your goals written down or just floating around in your head?
  • How often are you looking at your list of goals and evaluating them?

 

  1. Who is standing in your way from being on the other end of that dream celebrating all of the success?
  2. What is stopping you from accomplishing your goals, those dreams you have dwelling deep inside of you?
  3. When are you going to start taking responsibility for your actions or lack there of?
  4. Where do you see yourself a year from now?
  5. How are you going to start living out the God given purpose implanted in your spirit?
I know that reading these questions can be both inspiring or discouraging depending on your current mindset. How many excuses did your brain just fire off as you read these questions? Well as I say to my friends F.O.M.I. the fact of the matter is only you can do something to change any of these answers. You have to be the one to take action! Action, actIon, ACTiON! Any way you look at it there is in “I” in action. I have to act on what I need, want, desire, and am purposed for, no one else can do it for me!
So get out of your way today! You were created for greatness! You were created for such a time as this. You already have what you need. Your destiny is waiting on you! And never forget as my Pastor always says “God can’t move a parked car.” Take some action today! Never forget that even by the littlest things you are accomplishing that others are watching you and others will be encouraged to step out because you choose to act on your dreams!
Be encouraged!
From the bubbles,
Posted by: authorjmg | November 14, 2011

A Powerful Give Back Friday 11.11.11

Hi Fam!

Our day began with Aminah Williams, LySyin Lobster and myself boxing up delicious treats from Aminah’s Treats & More. We had excellent teamwork in preparing 11 boxes of sweets and one individual set of goodies. LySyin came along for our tour of the city to be our personal videographer documenting our experiences throughout the day which was really neat. Our first stop was at Church on the Rock (COTR) in St. Peters, MO where we were greeted at the door with a beautiful smile and warm hugs from Carla. My 6 year old daughter, Aminah and I all presented our Give Back Fridays package to the COTR staff who were extremely excited and blessed from our generosity. Next we made a special visit to Mrs. Edwards’ home and blessed her with some sweetness. She told us how much she appreciated the treats and gave us all a big hug.

Then to the highway we went. We had strategically planned out our stops but were using the gps on Aminah’s phone to direct us. The gps had a woman’s voice and we named her Brenda. Brenda did a great job in general but certainly didn’t make our 3rd stop at Fox 2 News very easy on us. I don’t know how many times we went the wrong way and had to reroute, but no matter what we knew we had a mission that together we were determined to complete! It was so exciting for us to be at Fox 2 for us since we enjoy watching them so much. A gentleman asked us who we were there to see and I proceeded to tell him that we would love to meet Tim Ezell or April Simpson if they were still around. He told us that he thought Tim was gone already but that he believed April to still be in. We stood in the lobby chatting about the shows that were on the t.v. and the possibilities that we see before us with our businesses. Then who walked around the corner- none other than the absolutely hilarious Tim Ezell! We were super stoked to meet him and he seemed very interested in what we are doing with the 10 Weeks of Giving Back to the St. Louis Community.

As we walked back to our vehicle Aminah and I talked about all the “what if’s” and how this is only the beginning for us. We hopped in the truck and started making our way to JoyFM our 4th stop. On the way there my phone rang and it was Tim from Fox 2! Tim invited us to be on Monday’s show (11.14.11) at 9 a.m. We were so ecstatic that I almost missed our turn for the JoyFM Studio. As soon as we opened the door at JoyFM we were greeted with a huge smile and excitement from the receptionist who had seen a post on the 99.1 JoyFM Facebook page that we would be stopping in to bless them. She so kindly gave us a tour of their wonderful facility introducing us to several people along the way. We entered the studio while the DJ’s were on the line with a caller for the Faith and Family contest. They told us if the caller got the right answer then they wanted us to cheer for them. One minute later we were cheering for the winner live on the radio. The DJ’s were so gracious to pose for a few pictures with us before we left.

What a blessing it was to have every single stop we made open their doors for us with open arms! Next we headed to the famous spot in Mangrove called Sweetie Pie’s. It smelled delicious in there and by the length of the line we could tell that it must be since the place was packed. Tim Norman one of the owners came over to us and we told him all about our Give Back Fridays giving him their gifts. Soon after he pulled us out of line so that we could meet his mother and owner of Sweetie Pie’s Robbie Montgomery which was a very nice treat. They even gave back to us by blessing us with our meals. We stayed to eat enjoying every single bite especially the macaroni and cheese!

Our final stop for the day was to the St. Louis VA Medical Center. Being that it was Veteran’s Day the VA was pretty empty except for 2 floors of inpatients. We decided to go to all the rooms and speak to the Veteran’s giving them a special thank you and a sweet treat. It was a great experience especially for my children to find out what area of the military the Veteran’s served as well as the wars they fought to protect us. The oldest Vet we met was 91 years old and still mobile! It was a really great visit.

Overall we had an absolutely amazing day showing the city with blessings. Aminah and I look forward to continuing our mission not only through the end of the 10 Weeks of Giving on December 23rd, but also to make Give Back Fridays a once a month event. We’re thankful for Dwayne Bess who included his literature in our package and encourage other businesses to join us in Giving Back to our city!

I hope you enjoyed reading about our journey and follow us along the way! Be blessed to be a blessing. Be encourage to live a Lifestyle of a Giver!

From the bubbles,

Jana M. Gamble

Posted by: authorjmg | November 11, 2011

Celebrating our Veteran’s and our city…

Good morning fam!

What a beautiful morning. This is the day the Lord has made! Let us rejoice and be glad in it! Today we have the privilege to be hitting the streets of St. Louis with a vehicle full of gratitude, love,  hope for our nation, autographed books and journals from local authors Jana M. Gamble and Dwayne Bess, and a whole lot of sweetness from Aminah’s Treats & More! Our deliveries will even be available for you to watch thanks to LySyin Lobster for giving back by joining us in our mission today in week 4 of our 10 Weeks of Giving Back to the St. Louis Community.

Our travels will take us a beautiful woman of God recovering from a open heart surgery, our church home Church on the Rock, JoyFM, Fox 2 News, Sweetie Pie’s, and a special stop by the St. Louis VA to honor our Veterans. We are absolutely thrilled about bringing hope and joy to our city through these Give Back Fridays! I am thankful that not only will Aminah, LySyin and I be hitting the streets but my children will also be a part of this amazing experience! Our prayer is that others will join us and live a Lifestyle as a Giver!

Be encouraged today and know that no act of kindness is to small. You can be a blessing to others in the simplest ways. Make sure you thank a Veteran today.  Have a wonderfully blessed day fam!

Mali Music

 

From the bubbles,

Jana M. Gamble

Posted by: authorjmg | November 9, 2011

Get in His Presence…

Good morning fam!

There is a sweet presence so thick this morning that I don’t want you to miss. The Spirit of the Lord is like no other! Let Him wrap you in His love and carry away every weight that may be holding you down today. Dance for a breakthrough. Praise Him with your whole self. Worship Him for who He is seeking His face and allowing everything else to fall in place.

This song helped set the atmosphere this morning:

 

During my praise I began feeling overwhelmed with His goodness. Listening to the words of this song “Angels Cry”, these questions came to me – Who are you not recognizing that is crying out to you? Crying out to be saved, crying out to be loved, crying out for affection, crying out for direction, crying out in fear, crying out in pain, crying out in anger, crying out needing God to pour out on them today? Hear their cries today. Open up your spirit and be sensitive to the words, emotions, body language, reactions, and the space of others around you. Who can you minister to through your work, your words, gifts, talents and abilities through just a simple gesture? Give your ear, your time and maybe even a hug to someone that crosses your path. Be still for just a moment to feel what they feel. Be present. Be a blessing without seeking a reward or acknowledgement.

Today hear their cry. Give something as simple as a smile today!

Be blessed! Be encouraged!

From the bubbles,

Jana M. Gamble

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