Wednesday, October 29, 2014

What's Under That Hood?

Last night (around 11pm), I found myself hungry and struggling to figure out what I wanted to eat.  I hadn't cooked, and I didn't have many restaurants to choose from, so I grabbed my puppy and headed out the door.
When I got in the car, I happened to glance over at my gas gauge, and to my disappointment, the lever was on E (empty).  Truthfully, I rarely look at my gas's gauge; I usually fill up as soon as I notice my vehicle's gauge is under half a tank.  This doesn't always work because again, I rarely look at my fuel level, but GOD has kept me.  Of course, I was somewhat disappointed because I only wanted to grab a bite to eat and go home; nevertheless, after seeing that my vehicle needed gas, I knew I would have to stop by the gas station, fill up my car, and then go and grab a bite to eat.

As I was parking my car to get gas, I noticed what looked like a show car.  It was a white sports vehicle, and the vehicle's doors were let up like a Lamborghini.  Nevertheless, I was never a fan of one "pimpin'" out their vehicles, so I went on about my business.

When I was preparing to leave, I noticed the sounds of someone trying to start their car repeatedly.  I looked over and noticed that the sounds were coming from the sports car.  The driver and the passenger were both in the car, and the driver was trying nonstop to start the vehicle, but with no success.  Suddenly, both of the vehicle's occupants exited the vehicle, and started pushing it.  All I could think of was how much money someone had invested into making the car look good to the point where they'd overlooked the most important part of the vehicle: its maintenance.  And of course, this made me think about women, in general.

I remember a time when I was that vehicle.  I placed so much value into adorning what I could see that I neglected the most important part of myself: my mind.  And because my thinking was off, I attracted men who also had wrongful thinking.  I would wake up everyday, and add or enhance the following (it deserves its own list):

  • Hair extensions
  • Contact lenses
  • Eye shadow
  • Eyeliner
  • Foundation
  • Lipstick
  • Lip liner
  • Short or tight (revealing) clothes
Everyday, I needed an hour or more just to get ready to go outside of my house.  Now, that's not to say that I have a problem with anyone enhancing themselves, but I want to share with you a journey that GOD took me on; one that changed my life by changing my mind.  This is a journey that I'm in the midst of, but I've learned so much thus far, and I want to share this wisdom with you.

I attracted the wrong men to myself...obviously.  That's because I was the wrong woman myself.  Like attracts like.  There was a time when I didn't know how to function if men weren't paying attention to me.  On one particular occasion, I'd found myself at the mall, and I'd noticed that I wasn't getting any attention from men, so I went into one of the bathrooms to see what was wrong.  My thinking was wrong; it had been perverted by a system that not only demoralizes women, but it capitalizes off the very women it has demoralized.  After all, I was spending the bulk of my income trying to enhance my beauty.  The reasoning for this was, just like everyone else, I believed that I'd initially attract my forever-guy with my adorned flesh.  I wanted to remain up-to-date and relevant.  I was determined to never be seen without my weave or makeup; after all, deep down inside, I believed that I was only pretty after my makeup was on and my hair was styled.  I put so much attention into the outer woman that I began to abuse the woman on the inside: my real self.  I repeatedly attacked myself with fornication; I drank myself into a stupor, I fought, I seduced, and I lived to repeat my sinful ways another day.  Underneath my hood, I was broken, but the external girl looked fabulous....or so I thought.  Needless to say, I kept attracting the wrong men to myself.  I remember one of my friends joking about how crazy some of the men were that I'd dated.  On the outside, they appeared handsome and confident, but underneath their hoods, there were all sorts of problems.  So, we ended up being broken starter cables trying to help start one another, but we kept on shocking each other with our words and ways.  We fought, we made up, and we broke up.  I repeated this cycle again and again, not understanding just how dangerous my ways were.

I was a fool (unsaved person) back then, but I wasn't an ordinary fool; I was a special kinda fool.  I was flattered by the wrong things, and I was offended by the right things.  For example, I found a man's jealousy to be an attractive trait; that was, until the day that I found myself running through people's yards trying to get away from an ex-boyfriend who didn't want to be an ex-boyfriend.  After finally agreeing to get in his truck with him (against my better judgment), I sat in the passenger's seat and listened to him scream at me about our breakup.  I'd broken up with him because we'd had an argument a few weeks prior, and he'd threatened to hit me.  Being an abused woman was not on my vision board, so after convincing him to let me leave that day (he was drunk and belligerent), I'd left and then ended the relationship with him over the phone.  And now, there I was sitting in his truck, watching saliva spray out of his mouth as he proclaimed his love (idolatry) for me and his unwillingness to let the relationship end (murder/ suicide threat).  When he started driving away with me in the truck, I knew things wouldn't get any easier; I'd have to escape, otherwise, I'd likely end up somewhere I didn't want to be.
He'd pulled into a gas station a couple of blocks from my house, and he kept screaming and being extremely animated as he threatened me.  After he'd felt like he'd instilled enough fear in me, he turned to me, softened up his voice, and asked if I wanted a soda.  I'd politely declined his offer and watched anxiously as he'd walked into the store.  There was a van parked next to his vehicle, and the guy got out of the car and asked me if I wanted him to call the police.  I knew that I wouldn't have time to wait for the police.  I needed to make my break immediately, so as I said no thank you to the good Samaritan, I'd taken off running on foot.  Not long into my run, I could hear the truck's engine, and I could hear him (the ex) screaming my name.  "Tiffany!"  He sounded crazy and I knew that he'd come to my house to try and force me to reconcile with him.  He knew that I was a mouthy and contentious woman, but he also knew that I was five feet tall, and only one hundred pounds of attitude; whereas, he was over six feet tall.  He'd seen that I could easily pretend as if everything were okay when he was present, but reiterate that I wanted nothing else to do with him once we were cities apart once again.  And I knew that his plans for me were to take me to his house or somewhere far away from my house.  He wanted to talk, cry, scream, threaten and seal the deal with fornication, and I didn't want that.  The relationship wasn't even two months old, and I'd seen enough red flags to make a hot air balloon.  I could tell that he didn't have a plan B, and this made him very dangerous.  He hadn't considered the fact that I'd likely reject him.  He'd simply told himself that he was coming to my city to passionately express his disappointment in me, and to force reconciliation upon me.  I was in the world, but I wasn't all-the-way stupid.  I knew that he was in a dangerous place, and I knew that he wasn't the type of guy that I could fight back and prove a point.  This was the kinda crazy that one needed to run from...and fast. So, I cut across lawns and did whatever I could to escape the now enraged and emotional ex.  By the grace of GOD, I'd arrived at my house, got inside and locked the door right in the nick of time.  That was the day that I decided that jealousy wasn't cute anymore.

I was unsaved, unchanged...broken even.  And because of the way that I was, I attracted men who were like myself.  During that time, I'd found myself in a series of dangerous relationships, and at first, I was stupid enough to be flattered by this fact.  I thought that there was something special about me that brought out the crazy in a man, but what I didn't realize was I had unstable thinking, and therefore, attracted unstable men.  Under my hood, or in my mind, one could find:
  • Lack of knowledge.
  • Perverted thinking (remember, perverted isn't always sexual; it means that you operate in a way that you weren't designed to operate).
  • Layers of lies seasoned with a hint of truth.
  •  Pride (a whole lot of pride).
  • Hatred.
  • Unresolved issues (conflict).
  • Lack of love for myself.
  • Lack of the ability to truly love others.
Guess what I attracted to myself?  Men who were just as or even more messed up than myself.

For this reason, GOD wants to renew our minds and renovate our thinking.  That way, when men with perverted thinking come our way, we won't be attracted to them because we won't agree with them.  Additionally, we can never assume that we're ready to be found by our spouses, because all too often, there will be strongholds and mindsets still hiding behind our lacks of understanding.  GOD knows the size (anointing wise) of the men HE has chosen for us, therefore, HE knows how much HE has to grow us up to be able to fit into our husbands' rib cages (body/ purpose). 

Nowadays, many women are infatuated with the exterior covering (skin) that men are wrapped in.  A handsome devil has a greater chance with a beautiful angel simply because it's hiding behind desirable skin.  In other words, sin blinds us to the truth, and if we don't let the WORD of GOD grow us up and give us our sight, we'll blindly enter demonically arranged relationships: relationships that are designed to pervert our thinking, make a mockery of our assignments (purpose) and destroy us.

Because many women are obsessed with beautiful skin, the cosmetics industry is one of the most booming industries in the United States and abroad.  As women, we oftentimes measure a man's value by the way he looks and the money he makes, so consequentially, we start working on our outer selves because we want to look as good as the men we want to attract to ourselves.  That's because the generation of today tends to rank individuals based on how they look, and we've come to believe that beautiful people belong with beautiful people, and not-so-beautiful people belong with not-so-beautiful people.  When this blind-man's ranking system is not honored, people talk.  For example, it's not uncommon to hear women say, "He looks too good to be with her!" or "How in the world did she end up with him?!"  This ranking system has led many women (and men) into unequally yoked relationships where the couple looks good together, but aren't good together.  This system encourages us to not look at the hearts of the men we are entertaining (because we may peer past those brown eyes and see the devil), but to instead, look at the flesh.  It goes without saying that the enemy designed this system so that we wouldn't look underneath the hood of a man, but would instead look at the body and buy every lie being sold to us.  At the same time, many men are ensnared by beautiful she-devils who are assigned to do nothing more than consume them.  That's why it is absolutely necessary for us to try the spirits by the spirit to see if they be of GOD, otherwise, we may find ourselves in relationships with devils disguised as angels of light.  We have to exercise wisdom when exchanging numbers with someone.

First and foremost, we've got to fully surrender ourselves to GOD and HIS will.  Next, we must separate ourselves from the world and its systems.  Believe it or not, many women pass up their happily ever afters chasing behind men who'll look good on their arms, not because they aren't attracted to those men, but because they want to outshine another woman.  Of course, GOD won't send you a husband that you're not attracted to, and HE won't send you a husband to fit the world's ranking system.  The husband HE has for you is a man after HIS own heart; a man who loves, hears from and fears HIM, and in order to be found by this man, you must be found in the will of GOD.  You will have to let the LORD give your mind a makeover, and you'll have to love and fear the LORD with all of your heart.  Once GOD starts to dress you in the beauty of holiness, your husband will find you in his pursuit of holiness.  That's when you'll begin to understand how unimportant the external woman is to the inner woman.  Sure, we want to look beautiful, but one thing I've learned is that there is a beauty that never fades: a beauty that starts forming on the inside and begins to radiate on the outside.  That's the type of beauty you'll see on a woman who's fifty-plus years old and wearing the external favor of a thirty year old.  Without the additives (make-up, hair extensions, lashes, etc.) she's more beautiful than the average woman.  Remember, Sarah was over sixty years old when Abraham asked her to lie to the Egyptians.  He asked her to say that she was his sister because he feared that they would kill him if they knew that she was his wife.  Sarah was so beautiful that Pharaoh himself attempted to take her as his own wife, and again, she was over sixty years old!  I don't know about you, but that's the kinda favor I want.  Not just the beauty to attract a man with an Abraham-sized anointing, but the wisdom, knowledge and understanding to keep him and speak with him on or close to his level.  I want the humility to learn from him, and the meekness to always receive, embrace and desire that humility.

Look around you.  There are beautiful things and beautiful people everywhere, all in which can give you hell.  Having been married twice while in the wrong mindset, one of the things I came to learn is that beauty is fleeting.....even within the home.  You see, a man who's truly attracted to you will be attracted to you when you're dolled up or dressed down.  He's attracted to you...period.  Additionally, most men don't marry because their eyes were entertained; they marry because their minds were entertained.  Don't spend too much time working on the body that you end up with a mindset (engine) that can't get you very far.  At the same time, don't become so obsessed with the outer portion of a man (his skin-design) that you overlook what's underneath his hood.

The sports car that I'd seen yesterday had a lot of money invested into it, and it will require more of an investment than a new car because now, the engine needs a reworking (or whatever's wrong with the car); plus, they've got to constantly pay to keep up with an ever-growing fad.  They've got to make sure they have the latest in car technology in order to compete in car shows.  When you get with someone who has wrongful thinking, they will require a lot but give a little.  They won't be investments worth making; instead, the only return you can expect would be disappointment.  Until their minds have been renewed, their engines will make a lot of noise, but they'll breakdown every chance they get.  It's time to stop obsessing over how you look or how someone else looks, and start obsessing over the WORD of GOD.  Wisdom is a perfume that attracts wise men, but flesh is the stench that attracts fools.


  1. I love your teaching style! I love how you use examples and stories from your past to reinforce the message! I love this part here, "I thought that there was something special about me that brought out the crazy in a man, but what I didn't realize was I had unstable thinking, and therefore, attracted unstable men". I also was blessed by this part, "Additionally, most men don't marry because their eyes were entertained; they marry because their minds were entertained. Don't spend too much time working on the body that you end up with a mindset (engine) that can't get you very far. At the same time, don't become so obsessed with the outer portion of a man (his skin-design) that you overlook what's underneath his hood." and, "Wisdom is a perfume that attracts wise men, but flesh is the stench that attracts fools." Awesome, Awesome, Awesome! This was such a blessing to me because I have insecurities I am being delivered from. I know I am a godly woman who will pray and support my man/spiritual leader, but I just hope I am not a disappointment to my god-ordained husband because I am not "thick" and I know brothers love a voluptuous woman. This really ministered to the insecurities in me and even to my own fleshly attitude toward a guy's appearance. I know I always think to myself that I want to be with someone who is as attractive as myself. I bless Christ in you and am so grateful for your testimony! as a writer myself, I appreciate how skillfully you write. You pick a topic/main idea (e.g.), "Look under the hood, not at the external", make various supporting points, and then tie them altogether while sticking to the theme. Praise God!

    1. I'm so sorry for the late response. Thank you so much! Your comment has truly blessed me. Your God-ordained husband will be blessed to have you, because God will bless him with you. You are his crown, his favor, and the reason he's favored by God. Society tells us that our bodies have to have a certain shape to get what we want, but that's not true. The truth is...All you need is the heart of God to attract the man of God. Every other man is not worth your time. God bless you sis.