Meditations That Helped Me

Three years ago when my partner left me and I began to sink into a fog of self-pity and remorse, my good friend Rev. Carolyn Mobley, Associate Pastor of MCC of the Resurrection in Houston, Texas, recommend that I should read a very special book of meditations that had helped her. The book was Acts of Faith: Daily Meditations for People of Color by Iyanla Vanzant. I got the book and started reading from it every day, beginning where I was in early September, 1995.

The book seemed to be written for me. I identified with every statement that I read. I was amazed at how the great variety of material in the book spoke directly to me, even though I had never even heard of many of the sources that were quoted.

Acts of Faith gave me the most positive and uplifting meditations that I have ever seen. The author is a black feminist activist. The book described Iyanla Vanzant as “a Yoruba Priestess, a Cultural Custodian and a Spiritual-Life Counselor. She is a powerful orator with a mission to educate women and people of color.” I was surprised at how directly she spoke to me as a gay white male Christian from her experience and study of problems and answers for women, people of color, and other oppressed and rejected people.

I have read through the book each year since I found it. I have given many copies of the book to my friends. It is worth your time.

The main emphasis that helped me most was encouragement to me to let go of trying to control other people and let God be in control of my life and the people around me. Love, self-esteem, trust in God (however you might name God), growth, healthy thinking, freedom from destructive past, recovery from self-inflicted pain, and greater honesty and objectivity towards myself and others all flowed into my being from the book.

I have to say that “Acts of Faith” greatly influenced me in finding myself and a new beginning in my life and ministry that has led to my living in the San Francisco Bay Area and developing and sustaining my Internet ministry through “Steps to Recovery from Bible Abuse.”

My book, Steps to Recovery from Bible Abuse, is scheduled to be published this December by Chi Rho Press. My book contains special introductory features plus 52 chapters of material to help believers from many traditions and sexual orientations to find their own individual path to spiritual health and joy.

Most of the material in the book will be different from the web site and will complement the site. The book is intended to provide both old and new information, resources, and guidance for individual, couple, or small group study in 52 weekly sessions for one year or longer. A second book is already being planned.