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Friday, October 30

Why Can't Strong Women Let Men Lead?

I was talking to one of my guy friends on the phone the other day, and he asked me, “why is it so hard for strong black women to fallback and let a black man lead?”

As soon as he asked this question, my mind immediately referenced the little control issue that I have (ok, maybe it’s a little bigger than little).

But here was my answer:

“Well, I can only speak for myself, but a certain level of drive, strength, control and aggressiveness is required to pursue and accomplish my goals in life. However, I need to learn when to be aggressive and when to fallback…usually that mean being aggressive when it comes to my desires and pursuits and falling back in relationships. Here’s the thing, though. If a guy is asking me to relinquish control to let him lead, he needs to know where he’s going because I’m not really into wandering (unless I’m in the mall). And I need to feel comfortable with letting go. And my comfort comes from knowing that God leads him. If he’s turning to God for strength and answers to life’s dilemmas, then I’m down to ride and let my seat back.”

I know it’s not quite this simple, but do you feel me? At least a little bit? Please let me know and leave your opinions.

Tuesday, October 27

Goddess Zuri Headed To A&T's Homecoming

Goddess Zuri is packing up the inventory and heading to NC A&T this weekend for homecoming! Stop by our booth in the Vending Pavilion Friday, Saturday, Sunday October 30th-November 1st between 11 am and 6 pm to take advantage of exclusive deals on tees and earrings.

Tell all of your natural bellas in the Greensboro area!

Monday, October 26

Goddess Inspiration: Kobi Yamada

Long Tee: Almost Gone...And It Won't Be Back!

Our Long Tee is almost gone! and when it is, it won't be back! We only have a few shirts remaining in each size.

Front: "I like mine long and strong"
Back: Image of goddess with long locks
(You didn't think we were talking about anything other than hair, did you?)

Get this shirt now for a birthday, Christmas or everyday present (for you or someone else!)

Howard Homecoming: Thank You!

Thank you to everyone who stopped by Goddess Zuri's booth at Howard's Homecoming. It was chilly on the first day and rainy on the second, but you still came out!

We got positive reactions to all of the tees, but especially the Naugh-Tees! Glad you enjoyed those.

We'll see you next year, but in the meantime, please subscribe to Free The Goddess blog and become a Goddess Zuri fan on facebook so you can be the first to hear about sales and specials on our inventory.

Sunday, October 18

Goddess Zuri Headed To Howard's Homecoming

Goddess Zuri is packing up the inventory and heading to Howard University this weekend for homecoming! Stop by our booth on the main yard Friday and Saturday, October 23rd and 24th between 11 am and 6 pm to take advantage of exclusive deals on tees and earrings. Tell of of your natural bellas in the DC area!

**The train won't stop at Howard. We'll be at NC A&T October 30th and 31st with the same great deals!

Thursday, October 15

Goddess Inspiration: Hannah More

Wednesday, October 14

Lessons From Hell's Kitchen Season Finale

Last night, I was in my hotel room in Raleigh flipping through channels to find something to watch. (I don't have cable at home, so when I work out-of-town I look forward to the luxury of having more network selections). Somehow I settled on the season finale of Hell's Kitchen, which ended up being a battle between over-confident-to-the-point-of-annoyance Kevin and laid-back-slow-talking Dave.

Dave appeared to be the underdog in the competition. First, because he competed with only one arm--after he hurt his wrist early in the season leaving his left arm in a cast. (He competed most of the season in excruciating pain because several challenges required him to cook with his left hand). Second, because he decided on a really simple, underwhelming dinner menu for the final competition while Kevin pulled out all of the stops with a complicated, well presented meal.

Dave's justification for the simple menu was that he had exhibited and proven his culinary talent throughout the season. And the final dinner was an opportunity to go back to the basics and cook a simple meal perfectly using the skills he had developed and strengthened week after week.

It paid off.

About about 55 minutes after the show began, Dave was announced the winner of season five, winning head chef privileges at Araxi restaurant in British Columbia during the 2010 Winter Olympics.

As the show went off, I reflected on a few things that we can all learn from Dave.

1. Never never never give up. Dave actually contemplated leaving the show on three separate occasions due to his wrist. But he didn't. He persevered through the pain to become the grand prize winner.
2. Keep It Simple. Dave's final menu was simple, whereas Kevin's menu was very involved. I'm sure we've all heard the common phrase, less is more. Dave focused on cooking a less intricate yet palatable menu extremely well. He wanted to avoid higher error margins with a complicated menu but still showcase his skills and ability to lead in the kitchen. It worked.

So the lesson....If we can learn to persevere through even the hardest times while trying our best to keep life simple, I think we might all be able to free our goddess.

Monday, October 12

I Just Think She's Fly: Lauryn Hill

Well, there's really no justification for this post. I just think Lauryn Hill is an all-around fly goddess.....And I used to run track in high school and college, so I'm diggin' the in-the-blocks pose.

Sunday, October 11

Redeeming The Time: Tavis Smiley in Charlotte

About a week ago, I started hearing radio announcements about Tavis Smiley making a stop in Charlotte on Saturday for his Nationwide On Your Side financial empowerment tour. My interest was piqued, but I wasn't really planning to go because I knew my Friday night would be busy with work. And I figured I'd be too tired. But when Saturday morning came, I got up, got ready and headed to the convention center to see Tavis. And I'm so glad I did.

The theme of Tavis's address was Redeeming the Time. He talked for an hour on the importance of taking the reigns of our lives and getting serious about using the time we have left, starting today, to serve others and discover the purpose and plan God has for us. If we're honest with ourselves, I'm sure that we can all admit that some of our past days, months, even years may have been spent in idleness, laziness, disillusionment or indifference. We can't get that time back, but we can take responsibility for the present and prepare for the future to ensure we're not standing in the same place tomorrow as we were yesterday. And this refers to finances, careers, relationships, spirituality, etc.

Tavis referenced a few quotes during his speech that I noted:
"Live everyday like it's your last because one day it will be." Quincy Jones
"The unexamined life is not worth living." Socrates

As I exited the convention center, I reflected on how happy I was that I, with God's help, pulled myself out of bed on Saturday morning because I left with a few doses of wisdom and inspiration. It turned out to be exactly what I needed and brought me one step closer to freeing my goddess.

Wednesday, October 7

Is He The One?

My friend sent me this email about finding the right guy (or him finding you), so I thought I'd post it so more goddesses could read it. Enjoy!


First we must allow our Heavenly Father to do the picking. And second, the decision for a mate must be made on a spiritual and intellectual basis before it's made on an emotional one.

'What about love? Shouldn't that be the third? you ask. No, and I'll tell you why. 'The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? (Jeremiah 17:9). The heart is willful and is driven by its own agenda. It does not consider things rationally and intelligently it just loves to love! Therefore you have to point it in the right direction: 'Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the well spring of life' (Proverbs 4:23)!

Whenever you meet a man, you need to get clearance from God, check out his attributes, and then allow your heart to engage. Dating exists not for mating; it exists for collecting data. I believe that the biblical design would be friendship, courtship and then marriage. Friendship is two people walking together in agreement and accountability, learning and growing together. Courtship follows the mutual agreement to commit to one another exclusively - it is the decisive turning toward the agreed-upon goal of the marriage altar. It is a period of laying a foundation and preparing your life together after marriage. But dating? Well, if you do date, use the time wisely to gather these facts.

1. Check out the fabric. Is the person mate material? Does this man have an intimate relationship with the Father through Jesus Christ? Does he care what God thinks about his behavior? Is he accountable to God as well as another co-laborer in the faith? Accountability is an important factor. It is imperative to maintaining a committed relationship. Is your potential spouse a member of the same family - the family of God? You need to have common interests and values and agree on the essentials of living day to day. You have a similar spiritual walk. You eat the same spiritual diet. You enjoy a lot of similar things. You have like interests, like goals in life, like opinions on basic life issues. You have had like experiences in your back ground. Though there is some truth to the idiom that opposites attract, like-minded folks fare better together. Furthermore, does he want to get married? I f you want to be married and your dreamboat isn't interested, don't waste your time. Remember, women fall in love and get married. Men decide to get married and then look for a wife. Note the difference in order. So if a guy says he's not looking for anything serious, take his words seriously. If he's not going in your direction, get off the bus and wait for the right one.

2. Does this man want you? Is he pursuing you? The man who is right for you will pursue you, and God's hand in the relationship will be clear. No guessing, no fleeces, no dead ends. Scripture says: 'He who finds a wife finds what is good and receives favor from the Lord' (Proverbs 18:22). Note -who finds whom? THE MAN FINDS THE WIFE. From the beginning of time, God has transported men and women across the world in order to put them together. At the RIGHT TIME, He will bring that man on the scene and he will find you. In God's perfect design, the man is the one who recognizes his mate. Adam has no problem recognizing that Eve was his missing rib. You do not need to strategically place yourself anywhere. You don't have to help a guy out because he's shy! Men will do whatever they have to do to get what they truly want. The man in your life should recognize you as the pearl of great price in his life and be willing to do whatever he must in order to gain your hand. If he is passive about gaining your affections, take it as a sign that he is not interested. Many a woman's mother has suggested that it is a good idea to marry a man who loves you more than you love him. As cold as that sounds, it actually might be scriptural if you stop to think about it: 'We love him because he first loved us' (1 John 4:19). Until then, take the ultimate chill pill. You don't need a bunch of men in your life to make you feel all right about yourself. You need only one man - your man, the one God has selected to select you.

And trust me, the right man at the wrong time can be just as awful as the wrong man at any time. So trust God's timing in this. He is the ultimate matchmaker. Relax, sit pretty and allow yourself to be found. Again - WAIT until the man voices his intentions. He should take the lead in establishing the relationship. You may have an inkling that he is the one, but God will use the man to set the tone of the relationship. Allow him the opportunity to woo you - this is your first act of submission. Jesus set the standard for all men to follow. They should love us first. And they should lead the relationship.

3. The man in your life should not desire to move into your house, only into your heart . A man who prepares for your future has made his intentions clear. A man who is husband material has the means to take care of a wife. He is a responsible human being who understands he needs to have something to offer. In short, a man should have the means to be a suitable lover for you .

4. Check out his buddies. Everyone knows birds of the same feather flock together, yet most women fail to see the connection between a man and his friends. A man's pals tell you a lot about the person that you haven't seen yet. They reveal things about the guy's character that might be hidden when he is on good behavior. Everyone knows how to put his best foot forward. Don't stay focused on the foot, check out the rest of the body!

5. Check out his relationship with his mother. How does he treat her? This is your preview of how he will treat you. There are l ots of men who, because of a negative relationship with their mothers, really don't like women, yet say they do. Unresolved issues between mother and son continue between husband and wife.

6. Remember that a man's family reveals the cloth from which he's cut. Take note and decide whether you want your future with the man in your life to look like his present family situation.

7. Check out the patterns of his life. Do you see repeated cycles of drama in his personal kingdom? Broken relationships? Problems in making commitments --including the job market? Mood swings? Is a problem always someone else's fault? Does he embrace responsibility or shirk it? Does he keep his promises? Is he a man of good reputation? Remember all garments look wonderful hanging in the store, but with wear, some begin to unravel. Give yourself time and space to check out the man in your life. Time will always reveal whether or not he is made of the right stuff.

8. Does this man have a vision for his life? Is he running with that vision? Remember, God decided Adam needed help once Adam got busy DOING his assignment. As we saw Adam, a man doesn't need help until he is busy doing what he was created and called to do. I s the man in your life guided by sense of destiny and purpose, or does he just allow life to happen around him? A man who is not certain of his mission can be a most miserable person - and you'll be miserable too if you know where YOU want to go in life. A man who has vision is not intimidated by a woman whose mission statement is clear. He will be your best ally, cheerleader and assistant because he wants you both to make it ! A man who cannot be supportive of your achievements because he is floundering in a sea of uncertainty over his own life is not a healthy partner to have and to hold forever. Creating dependencies or feelings of obligation is not the way to get the best out of your man. Somewhere along the way, he will resent you and flee from the smothering burden of obligation he associates you with. You want a man who is firmly anchored in his identity in Christ. Remember, we are looking for a man who will be priest and leader of his home. His first instinct should be to want to cover you, redeem you, and provide for you. Your job is to decide if this is the man God has ordained for you to complement.

9. Complimentary. Do your talents and gifts complement his? Do his gifts, compliment yours? What about your temperaments? Do you see the two of you as an effective team capable of bringing blessing to the lives of those around you? Do your futures mesh? Can you coordinate your gifts in an attractive and effective way? This is why knowing your purpose is so important. Make sure your hearts beat for mutual causes. When I go shopping I always consider the fabric, the fit and what I already have in my closet. Will my next purchase be a complimentary addition to what I already have? If I find that I am going to have to buy shoes and matching accessories to go with a new outfit, I leave it right on the rack. It is too expensive a proposition. If the man you meet makes you feel that you need to completely reinvent yourself, something is wrong. This is where I ask you to consider the relationship in terms of cost. Is this relationship expensive spiritually, emotional or physically? Does your longing for a mate make you willing to forfeit who you are in the process? Or does he see you as the gift that you are? The man in your life should consider you a rare find, a priceless jewel-because of you he is getting ready to get blessed big-time! Any relationship that causes you to feel unworthy, unlovely, unacceptable, undesirable or that you have to work for love, is too expensive! God has called the man to cover, protect and provide not only materially for a woman, but emotionally and spiritually as well. You should be richer in mind, body and spirit for your union with the man of your dreams. The man in your life should make rich deposits into your heart and spirit, not withdrawals.

10. Does he have a healthy love and acceptance of himself? Make sure the man in your life has taken time to heal from past relationships and has made peace with himself. How he cares for himself is how he will care for you. A man's relationship with God is crucial here. His love for himself will only be as strong as his love for God. This is not something that you can impart. You cannot be his savior or teacher. That is out of spiritual order. In his rightful place as your personal priest, he should be leading you to a richer relationship with Christ. If he is causing you to compromise your faith and destabilize your walk, if he is leading you into sexual sin or causing you to be distracted from your commitment to God, the relationship is too expensive. Offending the Lover of your soul, who promises you eternal love, is too high a fare to pay for a ride that has a limited run. If you and your man can't soar in the Spirit, when the force of your love for another is tested by the pull or gravity of the world, your union will not be able to survive. So you decide. How much is your life worth? How much is your love worth? You will be able to accept only what you believe you deserve.

God himself calculated the worth of your love and decided it was worth His life. He now pledges you His love for eternity. Yes, Jesus sets the example for all others to follow when He paid a ransom for His bride. Should you expect less from a mortal ma n? Throughout the Biblical age, men were willing to pay the cost for what they truly desired. The truth of the matter is everyone knows that anything worth having, costs and no one gets a ride in this life for free. Our prayer: Dear Heavenly Father God, I confess that I have not always been as careful as I should've been with my heart. From time to time, my desire for love has caused me to leave my heart in the wrong hands. I now commit my heart into Your hands for safekeeping. Please help me to stop being so impulsive with what you deem so precious. As I learn to celebrate Your love for me, let me learn from Your example what a bridegroom should really be like.

Help me to never settle for less than what you desire for me. As I embrace You as the Lover of my soul, keep my affections in the haven of Your own heart. As I rest in Your love, make me more discriminating of those who approach me. I ask that You take over this area of my life. Keep me from those You know would hurt my heart. I invite You to set a hedge around me and keep me from all who wou ld draw me into unfruitful relationships until the day you present me to the mate that You have selected for me. Grant me the discernment to recognize him as he recognizes me. Cleanse me from the temptation to typecast the men I meet according to what I see. Help me to trust in Your knowledge and lean not on my own understanding. I know that You know what is best for me; therefore I yield to Your choice.

Thursday, October 1

Goddess Inspiration: Toni Morrison