Bishop Vashti McKenzie Encourages Others Through New Gratitude Project

Bishop Vashti McKenzie Encourages Others Through New Gratitude Project

Video Courtesy of Black Enterprise


Bishop Vashti McKenzie has started her own project to inspire gratitude during COVID-19. The aptly named Gratitude Project focuses on inspiring feelings of gratitude, inspiration and joy to combat anxiety amid COVID-19.

“I’m often asked, ‘How do you stay positive in a crisis?’ The truth is that the pool of pessimism will call my name before the porch of positivity invites me to sit down,” said Bishop McKenzie in a news release. Bishop McKenzie serves as the 117th elected and consecrated bishop of the African Methodist Episcopal Church and was the first woman elected to episcopal office in the more than two centuries history of the denomination.  “How you start your day is important. I practice my spiritual disciplines daily whether through prayer, praise, study, meditation, worship, fasting and more. I read devotionals or a book, and use various apps like Abide and Calm.”

McKenzie has partnered with April Ryan, White House correspondent and Washington, D.C. bureau chief for American Urban Radio Network; Carla Harris, renown financial expert and senior client advisor managing director at Morgan Stanley; Sybrina Fulton, founder of The Trayvon Martin Foundation; and American gospel musician Earnest Pugh. She’s encouraging everyone to send their gratitude moments in to be shared via social media. You can find additional words of gratitude at http://thisisyourwakeupcallonline.com and on Bishop Vashti’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram accounts.

“I’m inviting everyone to join me in a special Gratitude Initiative: pray a gratitude prayer daily; write at least two things about what you’re grateful for, whether in your journal or recorded on your computer, tablet or cell phone; and share what you’re grateful for online or on social media,” said Bishop McKenzie in a news release. “Let’s get this gratitude train going and keep it going! You have to work for it, so love your neighbor as yourself. Let’s be partners in hope, carriers of optimism and purveyors of joy!”

RELATED:
6 Ways to Live and Make a Difference in a COVID-19 World
Black churches, via phones and Facebook, bridging digital divide amid COVID-19
Black church leaders urge churchgoers to continue to ‘tele-worship’

10 Two-Minute Podcast Shorts on Prayer

10 Two-Minute Podcast Shorts on Prayer

It’s hard to relax. We’re in an uncomfortable place right now. The future is unclear. Our leaders are not all stable. And the world economy is in flux. But God. He’s our anchor. His love never changes and we know that when we pray, it helps calm our heavy hearts and anxiety about the uncertainty of it all.  Below you’ll find a compilation of two-minute podcast shorts by Dr. Melvin E. Banks, founder of UMI, on prayer. We’ve pulled them from Dr. Banks’ daily radio program called Daily Direction, which covers a variety of issues and topics. So, turn the ringer off on your phone, find a quiet place, be still, and listen.


More on Prayer



Video Courtesy of THE BEAT by Allen Parr

10 Two-Minute Podcast Shorts on Prayer

10 Two-Minute Podcast Shorts on Prayer

It’s hard to relax. We’re in an uncomfortable place right now. The future is unclear. Our leaders are not all stable. And the world economy is in flux. But God. He’s our anchor. His love never changes and we know that when we pray, it helps calm our heavy hearts and anxiety about the uncertainty of it all.  Below you’ll find a compilation of two-minute podcast shorts by Dr. Melvin E. Banks, founder of UMI, on prayer. We’ve pulled them from Dr. Banks’ daily radio program called Daily Direction, which covers a variety of issues and topics. So, turn the ringer off on your phone, find a quiet place, be still, and listen.


More on Prayer



Video Courtesy of THE BEAT by Allen Parr

Words of Encouragement from Urban Faith

Words of Encouragement from Urban Faith

We’ve seen the local and national news and, like you, our timelines and newsfeeds are filled with sad videos. However, it is important that we keep in mind that there is indeed light at the end of the tunnel. And even when times get hard, it is important to remember that God is always in control. So, with that being said, our staff has provided some brief words of encouragement that we have found to be helpful during difficult times. Stay strong!

 

1. Things are never as bad as they seem.

2. Let every challenge make you better, not bitter.

Brothers laughing and talking

3. Be patient.

Teenage Girl Visits Doctor's Office Suffering With Depression

3. As long as there’s breath in your body, there’s still hope.

Open hands

4. God’s got this!

Worship Silhouette

5. It’s o.k. to cry. Just remember that God will wipe away our tears in the midst of our pain.

Sad African American female with tears rolling down her face

6. Proverbs 3:5-6

Tired afro man with laptop

7. We serve a resurrected God. Our God is alive! Death doesn’t have the final say and neither does man.

 

Freedom and sun at the beach

25 Podcast Shorts on Love & Life

25 Podcast Shorts on Love & Life

So much can be said about love. The beloved 1 Corinthians verses, such as “Love is patient, love is kind” (1 Corinthians 13:4–8a), are in many a wedding ceremony. But it’s when life gets hard that we draw on God’s love, who we love, and who loves us. Dr. Melvin E. Banks, the founder of UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.), has 25 biblically based, two-minute podcast shorts that cover tough love, love and sorrow, love and relationships, beloved hymns, unconditional love, peace and love, and loving Jesus.

  1. How Does a Man Prove His Love for a Woman?
  2. Charles Tindley Was a Beloved Hymn Writer
  3. St. Augustine Wrote About Love for God and Others
  4. Napoleon Bonaparte Spoke About an Empire of Love
  5. How Much Do You Really Love Jesus?
  6. Dr. King dreamed of The Beloved Community
  7. How would you define love?
  8. Why is the hymn “Amazing Grace” loved so much?
  9. One mother loved her son so much she took 7 buses to see him
  10. Parents still love their children after discipline is over
  11. The Prodigal Son’s story powerfully illustrates God’s love
  12. Genuine love often persuades people to follow Jesus Christ
  13. Love can express itself in many ways
  14. Love is a powerful motivator
  15. Grieving the loss of a loved one can be very painful
  16. A son abandoned his country, but his father still loved him.
  17. The need for love never goes out of style
  18. God’s infinite love can boggle the human mind
  19. Love is not just something you feel; it’s something you do
  20. Bill’s wife helped him understand love in a new way
  21. Someone came up with a list of 49 ways we can show love
  22. African Americans love to sing, “His Eye is on the Sparrow.”
  23. Here is how one insightful author describes love
  24. The dove is a symbol of peace and love
  25. How do you show unconditional love?