REMIXED POST FROM *2011 - I watched as my then 19-year-old* son’s countenance began to change. He wasn’t as outgoing or confident as he usually was. Because we are so close, I noticed in our talks he’d ask, “Why don’t y’all women speak? I mean, I’m just speaking!” I asked myself why I didn’t. So I told him, “It’s the way a man speaks. If he’s speaking like he’s flirting, then I don’t respond. But if he’s sincere, I’ll speak.” I watched as the days went by that he seemed weary and somewhat depressed. I prayed and asked God what I could do. He began to reveal to me how I had contributed to the problem. I thought, “What? ME!?! What’d I do?”
He revealed that each time a man smiled at me and I looked away, complimented me and I didn’t respond, or spoke to me and I refused to acknowledge his presence – that I had just sown a seed of rejection into that man and was reaping the harvest of it in my son. “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.” (Galatians 6:7) He also showed me it’s not my place to demand that a man speak to me in a certain way. As a child of God, Jesus commanded in Matthew 5:47, ‘… if you greet the brethren only, what do you more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so?’
So for the last four years*, I had to greet the brothers; even when they hadn’t met my standard of speaking. I’m not advocating and obligating you to respond to every cat call, whistle, horn, question, or greeting. But for me, I had to start by just acknowledging their presence by looking in their direction when they spoke. Then I’d gradually wave or grin. One day I’d nod, which eventually led to me speaking. Until finally, I am now able to hold a brief, and I do mean brief ‘you-ain’t-gotta-chance-to-holla-at-ya-girl-kinda conversation.
Women of God, I encourage you to start where you are. Smile, nod, grin, wave, like his status on Facebook, or chunk up the deuce, but acknowledge that man in some way; if and only if you have a peace about it. We 've got to do a better job about making sure that we acknowledge the men in our lives because so many are being ignored, rejected and killed in our society today. Mothers, speak for your sons. That man may not be your next husband but he is somebody’s child and more importantly - he’s a child of God.
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