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"THE NILE" isn't a River in Eygpt.

Sometime we live in a place of ignorance and total DENIAL about ourselves and what God wants from us.   I am discovering that all the things that I never want to examine about myself or my life are the very same things God keeps pushing to the forefront in my quite times.  As I sat in my mom's group today one of the moms shared that she didn't want to give up something that God wanted from her.  That she was struggling with this releasing of control.  I found myself connecting so much with her  internal struggle.  I have found myself in the driver's seat of my own life but giving God the credit.  It is kind of like he is my road buddy but I won't give him the wheel on certain routes.  I hope I am making sense with my imaginary.    I know I am suppose to release everything to God and have faith that things will go the right way but I still struggle with that process.   Eventually, I do release the very thing that is asked of me but sometimes its a bit more convoluted than it should have been because I didn't release it to him initially.  I am told many times that I am strong or I don't know how you get through the trials that you face.   I always say its the God I serve and his Strength and Power.   I sometimes feel like I am being fake because I do struggle with giving everything over to God and self sufficient part of me wants to keep just a little for myself.   The truth is I have tried to handle my own stuff and it isn't pretty for the on lookers.   I get impatient, cranky, snippy, snappy, lack grace, lose control and flat out drop the ball.   I find myself thinking I should have given that over to God because I just royally messed up and now I don't know what to do.   I hope I'm not alone in my personal failures or prideful pitfalls.   I sometimes believe my own PR.  You are so Strong.  But I'm not.  I'm so far from it and the truth is that its only by God's grace that I am still standing and in my right mind no matter how much I would like to think its  a little me.   It's not!  The denial that I lived in was that I don't have to continue to grow and push beyond my comfort zones even in my weakest areas.   Just because I am not naturally patience doesn't mean I can't be more patience than I was before.   Just because I don't want to hear excuses that people give for not doing their jobs or giving their best 100% of the time doesn't mean I can't develop more Grace for them.   I am truly learning how to love how God loves.   He is placing me in situation after situation to chose to love instead of my standard Operating Procedure: SHUT DOWN the Opposition!
God gently nudges us toward change and show us through experiences what we need to change to grow and develop more into His image.   We have to be open to receive his message and push away from the river of DENIAL to Grow into the ME God wants me to BE. 



Angry Mask, Broken Heart.

All We Need IS LOVE to Change the World.  God is Love and He loves You!!!
About 8 months ago I had been struggling with what I thought was anger.   It started off subtle but then developed into a full fledged volcano of emotions over flowing into many areas of my private and public life.  This was so not like me to not have it together in public or in arenas were my the "PR" me usually showed up and did what needed to be done and then the " RAW ME"  would go behind closed doors and let the anger flow.  I felt some shame with allowing this natural emotion to come out because I felt it was wrong or a sin to display such powerful distant for life, people, and circumstances around me.  I didn't know what to do with what was going on within me.    I sink into what I thought was a depression and tried to hold these feelings under containment until I could figure out what to do with them.    Time passed and the management of these emotions became less and less of a priority and the releasing of them by yelling whenever someone might have tapped a nerve was more the aim.    I felt so much better once I was able to release but the shame of my actions quickly dissipated any relief I might have receieved.  I must digress for a moment to share with you a relevant note.  I love to read! I collect books on all types of subjects to study in my free time.    I have lots of books in my library that I haven't  read but are there for me to pick up if I have some free time. Well I was in my office and I saw a book called Anger solutions.  I knew it was a sign for me to start dealing with the way I was expressing my anger.  One of the first things the book talked about was the shame we feel when expressing and feeling Anger.   Anger is a natural healthy emotion but what we do with it can make it unhealthy.   Do we outrage or enrage?  Do we let our anger stew and hurt ourselves or do we let it overflow like a volcano and consume everything in its path.  Well, none of these ways are healthy.  After carefully examination of my anger I realized that I was deeply wounded and hurt by the loss of my girls and ANGER was easier to express than the profound emptiness I was feeling.   I heard once that Hurt people Hurt people.  I was living that out in this season of my life.   Did I hurt people physically?  No, however words hurt and cut as deep as a knife. We can blow holes into each others hearts and minds with out picking up a physical weapon.   Words are powerful and Life or Death can come from ones mouth.  These are not my words but scripture.  I am not ashamed of the this season of my life because it has helped me see the power I have to either be a healer or a destroyer.   I choose healer and life.   Humility is important when we express our anger in ways that hurt others.   We need to go and apology and ask for forgiveness.   I also realized that Anger is not a sin and Jesus expressed anger in many situations in his life.   However, he did say be anger but sin not.  That is why we must know how to express this powerful emotion that was given us to bring about change in this world.  I now tell people I am MAD (Making A Difference) in the world around me.   If something irritates me at a level that I am Angry or MAD I need to do something positive to motivate change. "Be the Change You want To See In The World".  Many people in history Got MAD and were change makers (Jesus, Moses, Martin Luther of the Reformation, Ghandi, Mandela, Civil Rights Leaders, Women' Suffrage, MADD,  You and Me, and so on...)  

All in all I learn that the angry mask I was wearing was hiding a mother's broken heart.   I took that Broken Heart and Got MAD about senseless deaths due the lack of organs and tissues available for transplantation.    I have now channeled my energy into advocating for Donate Life and Lifebanc and any other organization that supports my mission.


Swift isn't always God's best.

Butterfly Brings Hope
As I approached the finish line after completing the 10k Lifebanc Gift of Life Walk and Run, I heard this quote in my head.  "The race is not given to the swift but to the one who endures to the end".  I remembered reading that for the first time in high school when I was in FCA (Fellow of Christian Athletes).  For those of you wondering no I wasn't an athlete however I just managed them (Wrestling team).  I remember the leader of the study talking about focusing on the means to the end not just getting to the end itself. What are we suppose to learn as we prepare to run the races set before us.  Is it to just win and move on or is it to learn something more profound about endurance and training. Last year this time I was dead set on getting a full Roux n Y gastric by-pass because I was tired of being fat and just wanted the weight off.  In my process of getting ready for the surgery I prayed and asked God for a green light.  Actually what I asked was is it your will that I get surgery for weight-loss.  After several weeks I felt comfortable that God was leading me down this path.   In my mind I was geek about being skinny and for the first time and finally experiencing life with a new perspective.  I was set and ready to undergo what would be a serious anatomical change to my body, not only in form but in function.  With this particular surgery I wouldn't be able to digest food the same one ever again.   I would have mal-absorption for the rest of my life. While this is a vital option for some people it wasn't what God wanted for me.   So in my last week before surgery there was a major hiccup in my plan and I didn't get approved for surgery.  I was angry, heart-broken,  and disappointed but still had hope.   I went into my "Proverbial" Prayer Closet and I asked God why would you provide greens lights about surgery to let this happen at the end of the process.   I waited for an answer in my quiet time but nothing.  I came back the next day persist to see where I missed the bus.   It was then I heard in my spirit "Roschelle you always ask my permission but you don't stick around to hear my process".  I was blow away by the clarity of this notion.   I don't stick around to hear his process?  What did God mean by this statement?  I probed more, by asking What do you mean?  "Roschelle you know I have a process behind all of my creations. When the sun rises you just see the beauty of the sky but I have laws that go forth to make that happen (Gravity, physics, etc) When you asked me about the surgery I did say yes but you didn't ask how, where, when, what type of surgery would be for you.  Its great that you come to me for permission or guidance but trust me that I also have a plan for the process."  I was blown away for the clarity and accuracy of the voice of God speaking to my spirit.   Well, I got the surgery done only a month later than originally planned and with a great surgery at a different hospital.   My recovery went well and I was able to go to the gym only one week after surgery.   I was thrilled to be on my way to being skinny!!  I was so focused on the outside of my body that I didn't even think about what God spoke to me next.   "You made a vow to complete the 10k in the Lifebanc Walk and Run from last year".   Wow how soon we forget the pledges we make to ourselves.   The year before I completed the 5k at my all time heaviest at 367lbs. and said to my girlfriends that I am going to do the 10k next year.   Well I guess I was going to complete  this goal because it must be apart of God's process for my new life.   I started sharing my goal with whoever would listen to it.   I recruited friends and family who would help me by supporting the mission of Lifebanc and coming out to walk with me.    I trained lightweight but I was determine to finish the race.   When Game time came I was set and ready to move.   I made great time during the first half of the course but when I got to the 5k finish line and the half way mark for the 10k I wanted to quit!  I started talking to God in my head.   I beat my time from last year in the 5k by almost 20mins.  I ran a good portions of that first part and I am really tired.   I was making excuses but God said you can do this.   Speak to your body and tell it you are going to do this.   I wasn't hearing it I was going to go and get some breakfast and call it a day until my girlfriend who we refer to as the HAMMER can trucking across the half way mark.   "Roschelle why are you stopped we got 5k more to do?"  I can't my legs are cramping and spasmodic I don't think I can finish. She came over and started to drag me down the course screaming along the way " You better tell your body that you can do this because I seen you do much more harder things than completing a 10k.  You woke up the day after your kids died.  You still find joy in life.  You give to people even when you do have.  Should I go on.... So stopped telling yourself you can't do this when you can."   I didn't believe her at that point I really just wanted to trip her.   But I kept trucking up the hill and and around the corner until I saw a beautiful butterfly land on a flower right in front of me.   Wow! This is my symbol for rebirth, my girls, and hope.    I thought to myself that this is a sign that I am going to make it to the finish line.   As I walked the rest of the course I saw a total of 5 little butterflies strategically place to give me hope until the end.   The volunteers were cleaning up and most of the people had packed up to leave but I completed my 10k in 1hr and 27mins.   I had friend waiting for me at the finish line cheering me on as I approach and that is when I heard "The race is not given to the swift but to the one who endures to the end".   This is the quote of my transformation and my recovery from all that life has dealt me over the past several years.  That if I just keep swimming like Dorry in Finding Nemo I will make it to my goals.   My goal is to be fit and healthy not just skinny.  I want to inspire people to not give up on themselves and to just keep swimming.  I want to show people that its never to late to take back control and the race isn't over until the former fat girl sings!!!!


per·se·vere through LIFE! 10k Lifebanc


to persist in anything undertaken; maintain a purpose in spite of difficulty, obstacles, or discouragement; continue steadfastly.


Passion equates to purpose: Happy Birthday Mandela!

Today was Nelson Mandela's birthday and he asked for each person to take 67mins and do something purposeful for another person or cause.    If each of us did this everyday what a wonderful world we would  have.  

Friends or an Entrouage?

Several months ago I began to reflect on the many relationships in my life.  I didn't really see myself as being a person having lots of friends but one who had many people around me. However my husband differed and stated that I had lots of friends and he wished that he could have that as well.  I couldn't find the words to explain to him the difference of being a person who attracts people and a person who has developed deep connected relationships.   Friendships take time and emotional energy to develop and the ability to be vulnerable.  As I was preparing for my quiet time that evening  I felt a question tug at my heart.   Do you truly have lots of friends or do you have associates?  Can you tell the difference between the two ?  Are the people who are your friends depositing into your life as much as you are deposited into theirs? Are your relationships balanced and based on a mutual love and respect for one another?  Do they have God as the center of their lives? Can you see the strategic purpose behind why God has placed you in their lives or vice versa?   I was blown away by the directness of this pondering.   I had not thought about the nature of my friendships or the impact they might have on my spiritually well-being.   I had to really think and look at my life and see the many different people God has strategically place in my sphere of influence and social circle.  I have people in my life that are here to add to my life with their experiences so I don't have to make the same mistakes and could learn from their wisdom.  I have people in my life so I can provide a certain perspective for them so they don't have to experience some things.  However, majority of my deep relationships are anchored in one thing... A unwavering love for God.    It is the essence of who I am and whom I'm around.   The thing that attracts people to me is the deep seated love and light that shines through me from God.    I realized that instead of focusing on the amount of people I have in my life and what we are doing for one another, I would focus on God's purpose for us in each others' lives.   I can be a bit sensitive if I feel rejected because I don't fit into a perfectly labeled social cast.    I have yet to find one group that I don't stick out in like hot pink and black plaid in a beige room.  This bothered me during my adolescent year and throughout most my young adult life until just recently. Actually its only been the last four years that I can truly say I am pretty comfortable in my own skin.   I really got to a point that the only thing that mattered was that I was truly "Accepted in the Beloved".   That God loves me and uniquely created me with all my quirks. (BOLD, Talks a bit much, finds humor in the simplest of things, non-pretentious, spontaneous, a bit OCD,  book nerd, and a total unapologetic compassionate Jesus Freak!)  It really doesn't seem flattering if you just look at those words written across a page but when you see someone living life like this, it brings to life the scripture in Jeremiah about being "Fearfully and wonderfully made."  I think before we truly examine the outside relationships in our life we must come to terms with our relationship ourselves and God.   If we don't find the value in who we were created to be then how can we expect others to do the same.   Once those questions were answered for me then all my other relationships fell into place.  

A few Photos that represent the uniqueness of Roschelle D. Ogbuji


Roschelle Ogbuji at Donate Life Hollywood Inspire Awards

Roschelle Ogbuji at Donate Life Hollywood Inspire Awards

Donate Life Hollywood Inspired Stars, producers, and other entertainment personality with the gift of life and hope. On this Wednesday, I had the honor of presenting an award to The Nate Berkus Show for covering our daughter Anya's Gift of hope and life by being an organ donor. I have to say that I was very overwhelmed with love by the reception of other donor families and transplant patients. I had the opportunity to meet a beautiful woman who lost her daughter at 25yrs. in a riding accident over 10 years ago and made the decision to donate. She was featured in a short film sponsored by Donate Life Hollywood and the winner of the Donate Life Hollywood Film of the Year Award. She spoke honestly about her anger and frustration at the death of her daughter as well the decision to donate. She calls her daughter's recipients her caretakers. Isn't that Awesome! I was moved by her rawness and honestly in her emotions. I could identify with her on so many levels. I haven't experienced anger or hatred toward my recipients, which she expressed. I have experienced anger at the shear fact that I lost my girls and their senseless deaths. Those seasons will come and go for the rest of my life but I am honest with myself when I am in one of them. I often tell others around when I'm in one of those season, so they can understand that the anger hasn't anything to do with them per se but its deep within my soul. For the most part those people close enough to see the anger and pain manifest are quite generous with Grace. I digressed. Back to the Donate Life Hollywood experience. There were many celebrities and producers being honored for their work in T.V. and Film on the topic of organ donation and transplantation.  A producer from Family Guy was from Beachwood, Ohio!  That was cool to know that Ohio was representing!  Another celebrity writer was from Shaker Heights as well.  He grew up here and hasn't found any other place like it in the world.   That was great to know as well.  Another One of them that was honored and I had an opportunity to meet and talk with was Brad Ellis from Glee. He is the pianist on the show and is in every scene that Rachel and Finch belt out their powerful duets. Brad is a heart recipient. Over ten years ago he was given a second chance at life and with his career as a musician. After the awards he asked to speak with me and commended me on making a powerful decision to live and celebrate life despite the darkness that I could allow to envelope my thoughts and life. I was humbled by his words of encouragement. I told him that these next words I was going to steal and coin as my own because they resonated so well with my soul. He told me that lots of people go through hard things in life and it weighs them down so they can't enjoy life. "You have a light that is powerful". It could have went out on Dec.1. 2007 but it didn't. Because you relied on something outside of yourself to fuel you through the abyss of grief, pain, and sadness you are able to give off that light as powerful as the experience you went through. Some people can project the pain they have gone through but not joy at the same level. You can! Then I told him my secret.... It's requires a few home and office supplies to carry it out. "Brad", I said "I'm Duck Taped and Stapled to the Cross. I am not leaning, clinging, or neighing but Grafted to it for life." "That light that you see in me is The SON shining His light through me. When I try to do it in my own power I lose that light and my human emotions and selfishness is blinding to those around me. However, as I have discover that His light is not flawed in anyway so I only want that to come through me. Still working on doing that all the times. " We go through things in life to bring us to an appointment that those events help us to reach. I don't wish anything l've gone through on anyone but God knows what he is doing and how he is preparing each of us toward our calling and purpose. I would have thought this comment was something to store away in my mental Rolodex to pull out when needed in the years to come, but as fate has it another messenger was sent to me with a similar message. On my way back home from Hollywood, I missed two flights and was highly upset about the senselessness of the situation. Then as I was preparing to leave the airport for the second time, I thought to myself that their must be someone on the next flight that God wants me to meet. I was halfheartedly joking but also knew that the circumstances that lead to missing each flight was obscured.  Well, there was! Her name was YVE Evans and she is a world renowned Jazz and Gospel singer. (I didn't know who she was at the time of our meeting until she told me.) I'll have to write a separate blog about what she told me because it is so profound and I am still processing the message. It actually made sense out of all the craziness I have been dealing with over the last 5months.  Actually, over the last 3.5 years.  What she said was this, " What you are going through is to help you understand people who will go through this in the future. How can you have creditability if you haven't gone through and come out in tact? God will use you to go into the darkness to help people see His light. He has given you His light to guide for those who have closed him out directly. Like Sojourn Truth and Harriet Tubman you are going to bring people out into freedom with your story and testimony of faith and hope. Be Real. Don't hide your mistakes and failures because you will use them as your badge of truth and transparency. In this message she told me that as I raise and fall and raise again. I am building a legacy for my children here now. They are seeing my perseverance in faith and life. The transparency you live out before them will make your testimony even more powerful and they will stand in a generation that refuses to stand. " I was so blown away by her message that I was speechless! I know, I know, me....SPEECHLESS! There wasn't a total eclipsed of the sun that day and the temperature in Cleveland didn't go below zero. I didn't have anything to say and I just received the message that God found away to get to me. I always say that we can all have burning bush experiences if we slow down and look for them in the everyday moments that turn into extraordinary experiences. By Golly my Cali-Holli trip was all around that and a side of grits!!!! I will write more about the wonderful women I met from my Mocha Moms, Inc. who attended the Inspire Awards with me. Until then Stay Blessed.


Humilty A Noble Attribute

Simply put humility is not the most popular attribute that people are seeking.   It's sad to say that most people, (including myself) run from it instead of embracing the lessons that it can teach us about strength and determination.   Why is it that people don't equate success and power with humility?   I believe it has a lot to do with our own desires to put self above everything else.  I should add that many of us put self before God.  I admit that I put my own desires and interest before God many times.  Do I intentionally do it?  No. However, I do it when I put my agenda before His.  When I don't obey his voice telling me to not do something that I know will come back to kick me.   When my EGO becomes to large to receive the feedback that is so needed in my life.  People also don't want to be humble because we are too busy trying to make our own light out shine everyone elses.   We don't want to be looked upon as weak or  powerless.  When I look at some of the most powerful people  that brought about change and had vast influence they all had one consistence theme, and that is humility.   Ghandi, Mandela, MLK, and Mother Teresa.   Last but not least Jesus Christ, aka "JC", exhibited humility in the most perfect form.    I guess I'm writing this because I've had moments this week that lack humility and meekness (Strength under control) and found myself wondering if I am the only one that has issues with this or not.   I am finding that it is a powerful weapon for alliances and progress.   I know that when I am not exhibiting this quality I am not living up to my full potential as servant of God.  My prayer for my life is to allow God's gentle hand to cultivate humility in my life more.  

Romans 12:3 (New International Version)

Humble Service in the Body of Christ
 3 For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you.



Who we are and how we behave has more to do with our connectedness then we thought.   This was one  of the themes of the new documentary movie titled " I AM".   It was very powerful to see the science behind how  and why cooperation is more beneficial to our survival then competition.  They called our obsession with bigger, better, more as a Mental Illness.  I don't know if I would go that far but I would say that it can drive you to think your crazy.   Are we too driven by competition and materialism?    Does more things really make you happier and secure?   I like nice things and the comfort they afford but I can't indulge in those things peacefully when I know someone is going hungry down the road.   How many people could we assist if we only consumed what we need and nothing more.   I would be skinny.   Some of us wouldn't be in debt.  We would be satisfied with what we had and nothing more.   When we  get this utopia please wake me and let me know.



F.E.A.R. Stands for False Evidence Appearing Real.   I remember a time when fear ruled a large part of my life.  Fear of: Rejection, Pain, Failure, Being Open, Loss, Being without, being alone, Future, etc.  You name it and I feared it.  But most people wouldn't have know that I even dealt with this because I was so afraid of being rejected and showing vulnerability that I masked this from the world. The only ones who knew the truth were Me and God.  I overcame this fear by facing the thing I feared most head on with God's Grace. (Another story and another time.)  After realizing that I wasted so much time fearing things and not living the life I was called to live I discovered how my fear damaged those around me. When your dealing with Fear in your own life you have a tendency to project negativity into the lives of those around you.   How is that?  By being hypercritical of everyone and every situation.  By putting unrealistic expectations on them.  By rejecting them before they can reject you.   I know I am not  just talking about myself with these examples. I thank God that through the challenges in my own life God has been able to free me from the trappings of FEAR.   I find that it is  liberating to not have to pretend and be myself.  I find it amazingly refreshing to live a transparent life with no apologizes about my imperfections.  We all have them and its the reason why we need God.  He is strong when I am weak.   I am humble when I seek assistance from my fellow neighbors who has the strengths I am lacking.   Fear is so underrated!  When we look at the world and what we can accomplish if we just put Fear aside and embrace Love, Empathy, and Cooperation  I am energized!   I AM Free to be ME!  The Me God has called me to be and I am unapologetic about who I AM.  Instead of Fearing the attributes that God has given me or rejecting myself because it doesn't fit the mold that someone else wants me to be I AM EMBRACING them.    What I now know is that there are many people still locked in the prison of FEAR.   When you've been there yourself you know how to spot someone still there.  The change that I want to be in the world is to walk in complete freedom of FEAR.  I don't want to apologize for myself because others don't like me or choose not to understand the beauty God has placed in me.   Everything that happens in our lives is meant to develop us more into the likeness of Christ. Whether if it is Good, Bad, or Ugly it should call us to a greater awareness of belonging to the Creator and his redemptive gift of Christ.   God has given us many things Power, Love, and a Sound Mind. Not one of which is FEAR! 


Run Roschelle Run!

I am more than 50 pounds down from my highest weight and I am feeling great.   I still have another 150lbs to lose but I am encouraged that I will get there.   As I the pounds are shed  I had a realization that my self protective barriers were being stripped away too.   I have used food and my weight to guard what was really going on inside. i.e. The pain of losing my daughters, things from my childhood, and being rejected due to my weight. As each pound goes I have to face the problem or issue that put the pound there and across it.  

Today-I am facing one of those triggers - Grief and Loss.  Imose older daughter would be a 4th grader and graduating this year from lower Elementary school.  I realized that I'm going to face milestones like this for the rest of my life and they are going to be difficult.    I use to turn to my 1# at Chik-Fil-A and a milkshake but I can't now.   Food no longer has that hold on me to fill my emotional voids.   I had to face the fact that I was in pain and hurting and deal with it.    So I prayed.  Chatted with a few close friends about my memories of my beautiful daughter.  Then finally put on my Steven Curtis Chapman "Beauty Will Rise" CD and  went for a run.  I ran so hard that I thought I was going to fly off the trend mill.   I felt like I wanted to run until the pain in my legs equal the pain my heart.  What I realized after my 25mins  of my interval workout was complete, was I can't out run this thing.    I could only continue to allow God to carry this load for me as I walk along side of him.    I am not only coming out of the Fat but out of the pain the fat was covering.    I hope this helps someone.   Keep your head up in the ambition for a healthier life!