Basic Foundations of Life Series

Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry, Ph.D.

I would like to welcome you to my basic foundations of life series. This came about during a time of much confusion for me, as to where my life is going and what life might look like in the phase I am finding myself in.

Wisdom led me to go back to some foundations. I am teaching them a bit differently than I ever have before. Our basic foundations in life are:

God

Marriage/Partnership

Family

These are the areas I will be exploring with you over the next few videos and blog posts. For some reason we have the idea that political values, government, or a hierarchy of leadership is supposed to be what we look to for our guidance first. This is not so. I would like to bring you back to the foundations of life and how the branches are supposed to begin from the roots of our foundation and then spread out to other forms. The additional forms from what we create through God, Marriage, Family, might be community, organizations and other forms of leadership. Our personal leadership starts with ourselves and our relationship with our Creator. Step into the divine! Here is a video to start you off!

Loving you from here,

Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry, Ph.D.

JenineMarie.com

LifeLessonsbyJenineMarie.com

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Creating a Positive World

No doubt we live in strange times. Sometimes I look at life as it unfolds in society, and I wonder what next year will look like, or even tomorrow. If I want to stay on the positive side of life, I have to say to myself, “Stay in your own world and create the most productive and positive umbrella possible.” It’s hard to stay positive in environments that are so counterproductive we wonder why people would want life to be as they present it.

Structurally society is meant to be made up of units, marriage being the center and family surrounding marriages. Spiritually our foundation is intended to be based on the design our Creator God has set before us. Without that foundation, our morals, ethics, and positivity go out the window into the no-fly zone of society’s negative aspects.

I’ve always been taught; attitudes are contagious. Within the nucleus of the family set in motion by God, our positivity can affect the units that makeup society. What does this take? The first answer is willingness. We have to be willing to make the necessary changes to change our nuclear family and community. Next, we need to have the desire. Taking an “I don’t care about anyone else” attitude will never create positive changes. Last but certainly not least, we need love. I’m not trying to sound wishy-washy since I am always touting the gloriousness of what real love is like. I’m taking the subject of love very seriously. Without self-love that comes from God’s love, we have no love at all.  

We are the embodiment of our Creators genius. Knowing this and behaving as we know this are two different subjects. We need more than knowing. We need love and action. The two go together like pumpkin pie and whipped cream. Do you like my analogy? When love meets desire and willingness, we have the seeds that breed action.

We get nothing changed by complaining about things all being wrong. We do get something by using the love and action formula to create a new environment in marriage, the family unit, and our outer facets of society. Do you have anything else that is more important than this? Think about all of this for a moment. What kind of world do you want your children and their children to have in years to come?

Loving you from here,

Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry, Ph.D.

JenineMarie.com

LifeLessonsbyJenineMarie.com

All Along God So Loved…

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Something I read for school last night set me on the edge of the world, dangling my feet. One chapter of one book spoke so loud I cried. It’s too scary to say what it was about because it gave me such a feeling of failure. I thought of all of the choices I should have made but didn’t. I thought of the ones I did make that altered my life forever. It’s funny, out of all of the things I have done in life, it never seemed to be the right choice; not for me, and certainly not for anyone else. My approval rating went out the window last night. I felt lost in a world of unfeeling people whom I felt suddenly never cared.

I thought of all that I gave out and how it never was good enough, or just not enough. I ultimately believe we reap what we sow. I know for sure I have sown good things, and I know I have also sown not such good things. Either way, for that one moment in time, I felt like I have been reaping all of the hard parts and none of what I genuinely have desired in life.

As I sat there last night with my “I’m not good enough” mentality, I could not wrap my head around how I have been strong enough to get through the garbage I have had to wade through in life. Believe me, garbage stinks. I was never allowed to say it was wrong, that it stank, or that I felt unhappy about it. It was just my garbage, and I had to deal with it with no consolation. As I watched people go in and out of my life, I wondered if any one of them ever truly cared. Last night one by one, each of them came to my mind. Each time someone appeared I shook my head. I thought of how hard I tried, but it was never ever enough. I was always WRONG. My feelings were wrong, my heart was wrong, my life was just all wrong.

Of course, I cried. I cried until I slept. I wondered if anyone else ever felt like this, that their life was just wrong. At this very moment, it still feels the same. My heart aches, but one thing has changed. As I struggled to journal this morning, I could not get past just one line. I read all of my affirmations, said my prayers, and did my usual morning rituals. I could not write one thing to encourage myself or anyone else.

As I closed my eyes, I heard that deep voice within tell me, “I have loved you with an everlasting love.” I wonder who that was? Of course, I recognize the voice and the statement. There is still a well that is deep inside of me, inside of us all, that inhabits the Creator of all things. God, the one who has loved with an everlasting love, lives there, resides there, has taken up residence there. I could feel the sun come out and the Son come out. This morning, I realized the whole world could pass away, but one thing remains, God is always the strength of my heart. God is always the One who has loved with an everlasting love, and God so loved that He gave…

“From out of these ashes, this phoenix will still rise…” – Octavia Blake (paraphrased)

Loving you from here,

Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry, PhD

JenineMarie.com

LifeLessonsbyJenineMarie.com

Do You Cover in Love?

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There is a particular nature or way of being that comes from the spirit of God. I dare to call them characteristics. Sometimes I think we forget we are God’s expression on this earth and our manors are not precisely what they can be. Of course, every person has a choice as to what character they want their conversation to follow. We can follow God’s characteristics or be unempowered and follow the human ego part that creates chaos instead of contentment.

One thing about God’s nature is the idea of covering. God covers. In the story of Adam and Eve, when they were naked in the garden due to their own choices, God created a covering for them. God created clothing that gave them the better things in life despite their intentions. The best they could do in their ego-self was to find fig leaves. God gave them clothing of animal skins that protected and covered. In the story, God’s act shows a character that covers, has warmth and guards with love.

Adam and Eve need not be exposed for their transgression. They already felt repentant enough, yet God took their guilt and shame along with the half-hearted way to cover their “sins” and replaced it with what is better and more protective. God’s forgiving character and the loving manner is one we should display daily. Covering someone instead of exposing them to coldness comes from real love. Exposing loved ones to others’ bitterness by our tongues only brings shame and guilt upon oneself. Remember, we reap what we sow. If we cover instead of exposing and if we truly love instead of operating from ego, our lives will be blessed with the goodness that God promised in the garden of Eden.

I suppose we all have to ask ourselves what we truly deserve. Is it reaping hot coals upon our heads or shivering in the cold, or do we deserve to be covered with the warmth of forgiveness, protection, and light?

Loving you from here,

Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry, PhD

JenineMarie.com

LifeLessonsbyJenineMarie.com

This is Personal, Raw, and Real. I Won’t Apologize

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I don’t even know how to begin what I am about to write. I guess the only thing I can do is just start and see where I end up. I woke up this morning, and something inside of me just broke open. I am shaking my head right now because life is just so nuts. Before I go any further, I just want to make one thing clear. I am not writing this for attention. I don’t need sympathy, and I don’t want pity. I am writing this post because, at the moment, it is the only way to get this out.

I am writing this post because I am a mother. I brought children into this world, and they are the greatest gift I have ever received. I might not remember what I ate yesterday, but I remember the smiles on the faces of every single one of my babies when they were born. My children are my heartbeat and the greatest gifts I have ever had.

I lost my firstborn child when he was 20. As the oldest of five children, he was the one who helped out when I needed more hands than the two I have. The kids and I were a surviving unit. As a mother of five kids on my own, I truly did not know how I was going to make it, but I did. Unfortunately, I had to give up my son. God took him. How that happened is still pretty much a mystery.

I’m going to get to my point here. I have another son and three daughters. We have all gone on with life, but we have all been hurting inside. The loss of a child or sibling is a severe pain to bear, especially after all we survived together. I still remember my younger son’s face the day of my firstborn’s funeral. He loved his brother so much. They were ten years apart, so my son’s brother was the only other male he could look up to in a house full of females. I will never forget the day my son’s big smile turned into tears. I am not sure what my heart was broken about more; losing a son or watching my other son hurt too much. All of my children have hurt, but I feel like my younger son hurt even more for some reason.

He accepted drugs in response to his pain. I’m sure his pain was numbed for the moment, but a drug and alcohol addiction that evolved out of control occurred. It is hard for a mother to watch her child harm his life, but I know no matter how much I have ever hurt, he has hurt more. His addiction landed him a prison sentence, which he has done most of.

He was placed in a state prison he should never have been in due to the risk of becoming ill with a disease that comes from the soil in that region. He has been very sick. I know he feels like he will never recover. He has fallen in his cell due to weakness, has had pneumonia, has hardly been able to be in sunlight, has been at risk of being hurt by others, and has been subjected to the trickery of those who cost him more prison time.

I want you to know this has all been a helpless feeling; to have a child, who is an adult, go through the things my son has endured. Yes, he has done a lot to himself, but he sure did not lack help in the addiction department. Addiction does not survive alone. It always has its accomplices. I am a minister and a believer of a higher power whom I call God. So, therefore, I have prayed as hard as any mother could possibly pray. My son remains sick, fearful, and not able to even deal with the addiction he went to prison for. People go to prison because of a crime they committed as discipline for that crime. They call it rehabilitation, but that does not happen, at least not from what I have seen. Regardless of what any individual has done, they do not go to prison to become sick with a disease they will never recover from. I have written to the President of the United States. I have written to the governor’s office of the state. I have written to the ombudsman of the prison system. I have written the state’s congressional representative, the state senator for that region, and those I thought might help. I have contacted an advocacy group on my son’s behalf and even the medical department of the prison he is in.

Nothing seems to help. So I keep on praying, sounding like I am alright, and moving on with life, telling myself that faith is going to have to be enough. I have isolated myself personally because of the painful part inside of me just can not take one more person hurting me. Yet life goes on. I tell myself I have to keep on going, and the rest has to be left up to God.

As I said, this morning, I broke. It’s not like I have not cried before because I have. I have cried loudly and out of pain, frustration, and anger. I want to tell you something. I absolutely HATE drugs and addictions. I have watched the people I love the most have their lives destroyed by drugs and alcohol. I don’t know the reasons why, but some can handle them, and some just can not. I think it is all a toss of the genetic wheel, maybe with a little human pain thrown in for good measure.

I dedicated my life to helping others, teaching others, showing what faith is, teaching lessons, and learning more so I can teach, counsel, and do more. We all have a purpose. Right now, at this very moment, I am the one who needs help. I need my son to receive the care he needs and the attention he needs to get out of that dingy prison cell and be helped into a life he can thrive in. I think right here; I might add that I have not been able to hug my son in 8 years. He has been locked up for most of those years, and the time before that, he was addicted. I left the state. My mother’s heart can’t take any more from anyone at any time.

It’s a helpless feeling, having to be strong, moving on in life, and have this painful heartache inside that says life will never be alright again. Grief does not end when we bury our loved ones. I already know that love can not be healed. Love is love. What we do is keep our loved ones close in our hearts, and we come to understand the heart and soul of a human being is where heaven is because that is where we hold our dearest loves of our lives.

It’s a helpless feeling to have a son, a grown man now, locked in a cage where no one will help him. It appears that all that happens in our prison systems is to put drug addicts away until they become hard just to survive. Addiction is a disease that is passed down through genetics, and it is one that is systematically reinforced by others who are addicted or sell drugs. It’s a vicious cycle.

Of course, I have blamed myself. I know deep inside it is beyond my control, but I still blame myself. It does not help that others have blamed me too. It’s sickening; all of it. Our country needs more addiction recovery programs. We need to stop condemning those who are addicted by locking them up and throwing away the key and start teaching them how to live with an illness they did not ask for and yet have to live with. We all live with it. Sometimes we die with it.

I smile, I laugh, I have good things that happen in life. I have moved forward, but a massive part of me feels stuck and broken. I know this is how every mother feels when their child has struggled with an illness they can not control. It controls them. It controls everyone it touches. Believe me; it’s hell.

Thank you for putting up with my long written broken vomit. Excuse me here, but there is no other way I can describe it. For those of you who have gone through the same, I am sorry. I wish you the best solution possible and for healing. For those of you who have received my letters and cries and yet have done nothing, I am sorry for you.

Today, just Jenine

How We Find Peace in the Moment and Bring Out Joy

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For a very long time, I was a seeker of peace. After all, peace is what I was taught to pursue. To me, having peace meant happiness. Even more profound, having peace meant going beyond happiness and into joy. I have come to realize that joy is peace expressed. When inner peace overtakes the soul, we have joy and joy-filled responses to the world around us.

It’s a lot like genuinely being in love; the world can be falling around us, and we don’t care that much. True peace is the same. When we have it, we know it because the world can be in utter crisis, and we still have the expression of peace: joy.

From what I have gathered just by observing my own life, and maybe some others, true peace comes from living in the moment. The moment can be filled with torrential seas and churning emotions. Our answer is to be still during that churning moment. Jesus taught us when the boat begins to rock in the storm, our response is “Peace be still.” Being still in the torrential moment is the answer to peace. I determine to do nothing except breathe for that moment. Each moment passes as they always do. Not one moment can be captured and held.

So, we let that torrential moment pass and allow peace to flood into us and eventually out of us. We will enable the breath of the moment to fill us with tranquil thoughts and, ultimately, peace during our bodies’ surge of uncertainty. Pursuing this type of peace takes practice because we have to override our instincts to react and act. In truth, our actions can wait for the torrential moment to pass on by; and it will.

“Trust and allow” are words that always have echoed into my spirit after a torrential moment has surged up to haunt me, overtake me, or wreck me. The reality is, the world can wait, people can wait, and life’s issues can wait for one sacred moment when peace will expand inside. Let’s make a pact with ourselves to survive the next torrential moment with a breath, with peace, and with dignity. The peace gate might take a few moments or more to open. So our solution is to sit, not to keep our eyes on the storm surge, but to focus on peace entering into us with breath and with life.

This is the body’s medicine for the soul. Breathing in peace and getting into the habit of continually doing this will save a great deal of heartache and allow healing to begin within the wounds that are begging to be exposed and healed. Let’s heal ourselves while there is time on earth. We can do this! It’s not hard. All it takes is the dedication to wanting to live a more peaceful, serene, and joy-filled life!

Remember, you influence the rest of the world around you. Being in peace and having joy-filled responses will heal you and heal those you influence.

Loving you from here,

Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry, PhD

JenineMarie.com

All Life Belongs to the Light of God

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I believe there is a place inside of us that reflects what God meant to be there. It is a heavenly place, created by Light, and in the image of divinity. We might not always act like we are God’s creation, but we are. Sometimes things are buried deep inside of us, so deep the Light of God is not seen. I repeat it’s there, though.

Like a baby born into space, it sucks into itself what is socially granted to him or her. Without any intention, from birth, we live the way we are socialized to live. As we grow, we learn to create a more sacred space, or not. It’s our choice. We can heal and have hope, or we can spoil in the soul scars we took on along the way.

No matter what stance we take, we are worth honoring because a genius Creator made us. We are life and a reflection of what that great love intended for us. We don’t always shine that way, although it is how it should be.  

Knowing this, we should honor all life no matter what form it takes. God created life with great intention, great love, and genius stamped upon it. For the respect of God, we honor. All life might not be honorable in action or deed, but we choose to forgive those things and praise anyway. Integrity is God’s pathway. Does a holy Father reject His son? Does a parent leave their offspring because of flaws they can not help?

What about the one who is buried deep within a mother’s womb? The sacred lies sweetly and innocently within a space created just for him or her. Should this sacred creation be taken from its nesting place before its time? Does it deserve to die when it has no choice of its own? We were all born with freedom of choice. Why, then, should we choose another? Is it not murder to disrespect a life that yet has no say?

Living in perfect formation, the unborn is innocent and has nothing to disrespect. The unborn are like sheep that are subject to slaughter, and we call it pro-choice. We say it’s a woman’s right to choose her own body, but does she have the right to select for one who is so perfect and innocent? Does she have the right to say this one who is yet to be born should not be? Do any of us have the right to take what is sacred and call it not holy?

Loving you from here,

Dr. Rev. Jenine Marie Howry, Ph.D.

832-484-8306

http://jeninemarie.com

Unpack the Inner Baggage

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Everyone, I mean everyone, has emotional baggage from something somewhere. We are born into this world with innocence, and on the way, we absorb what comes from our families, society, friends, and circumstances we find ourselves in. Some things might be beyond our control, and others we brought on ourselves. We tend to live and act out of the junk the accumulates inside of us.

The first thing we all tend to do is blame. Humans are so good at the blame game. “My ex-wife/husband treated me poorly,” “My parents were not good parents,” “I was abused and raped as a teen.” Whereas these things are traumatic and can be quite horrible, we don’t need to live in a reflection of them.

One of the other things we tend to do besides blame is numb the feelings that spawn out of the issues. We become addicted to substances, material things, bad relationships, food, individual behaviors, hiding our emotions, and put ourselves down.

Life does not have to be this way. Our primary responsibility to ourselves is to excavate past the junk we pick up along the way, deal with it, throw it out, and find the true essence of who we really are.

Our divine nature is one of love and light. We were created to shine out of those elements. The other sludge we pick up along the way only serves to dim the brilliance of who we really are. The spark of fire we carry comes from all of the elements we find around us. Our bodies function and are made of air, water, and elemental nutrients that are also found in the earth.

The soul body carries the spark of our Creator. We are love, laughter, joy, patience, kindness, strength, and creativity. From within each of us is the capacity to manifest greatness. We carry within us the temple of God. All together, we create an image of the divine. True divinity is humble in nature, never puffed up nor prideful. We are creators in our own right and should be created out of the foundation God made us from.

Our responsibility to ourselves and others is to clear the clutter, unpack the baggage, and shine the way we are meant to shine! Nothing is stopping any one of us, accept ourselves. We get in our manner. Humans tend to love and protect the wrong things. We think we have to hide our insecurities, our hurts, and our soul scars. So we watch them instead of releasing them.

Under all of the clutter, all of us are free. We think and even believe our freedom comes from the outside and the conditions we live in. Not so. Our freedom comes from unpacking the baggage we have locked inside of us for so long, and becoming the true nature of who God created us to be. Together, with God and each other, we rise!

Most of society just does not get this yet. So we see people living in a constant state of trying to shift the outside of themselves. The human race is not going to evolve out of the bitterness, disharmony, agenda pushing, and blaming, everyone seems to be accustomed to. We rise from beginning with ourselves.

Today, do yourself the most outstanding service you could ever do. Unpack the baggage and choose to live from the light of our Creator, live from the inside out. Be the peace you want to see in this world, and suddenly you will see peace everywhere you go! We are who we believe ourselves to be. What if every person decided to unpack their baggage, stop blaming, and started shining?

Loving you from here,

Dr. Jenine Marie Howry, PhD

Jenine Marie Coaching and Ministries, LLC

Compassionate Listening

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The silence of the morning hours are the most precious moments I spend. It’s the time when I pray and meditate with God to connect with the pulse of creation and wisdom. In that silence this morning the message I heard was how powerful a person is while being a compassionate listener. To truly hear the heart of another with no condemnation or judgement is to be the greatest gift to this world.

Compassionate listening is to be silent while someone else speaks and truly hear the heart of that person. This is true of groups of people as well. We don’t have to agree to listen and hear. We don’t need to judge or even come to a conclusion, expression, or solution. Sometimes people just need to have someone listen and to be heard. When we listen to understand we become an ambassador who connects hearts instead of repelling them.

The greatest honor is to be trusted with the thoughts, ideas, and feelings of another. The greatest gift is to listen without judgement. It is in that context, in that moment, we become the greatest ambassador of love ever.

Loving you from here,

Dr. Jenine Marie Howry, PhD

832-484-8306

I Learned the Greatest Lesson of All…from MY Clients

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If you have ever known me, or have been connected to me, you know how much I love my work.  There is nothing more amazing to me than to be trusted enough to be allowed into another person’s heart and life. I count it an honor to be held in confidence. At times it has been to such a level, I have been told things that my clients have never revealed to another single soul.

There is nothing quite as satisfying to me than to know I have left a conversation and my client has had an “aha” moment, or has felt a great load being lifted from their shoulders. Yet, there have been those from time to time who have either come right out and told me I had not helped them at all. Or there have been those who have just quietly distanced themselves from me. In those cases I would get off the phone or go home feeling tied up in knots wondering what I could have done better.  I took it hard and usually put all of the load on myself.

Comforting myself, I would reason that I am not perfect, and don’t know all of the answers. While this is true, there had been one piece of the puzzle I had not considered, “I can not assist anyone who does not love themselves enough to realize they need to make their own changes”. I can facilitate, but I can’t change anyone. Change comes from the inside out. One element that has to always be there is self love.

The amazing thing, is the most difficult clients revealed to me my own lack of self confidence and self love. Everyone is a mirror to us no matter what the role we play in one another’s lives. Literally, my rejecting clients expected me to fix them and I strained within myself thinking that it was my job.

Learning the lesson about fixing my own self, loving myself, and being confident within myself, has been a hard one. I’ve had to weed through all of the junk that led me to “people please” and allow others to judge me, or compromise my sense of self worth. Bottom line, we are all a work in progress. With my progression, I discovered it has been alright to walk away from those who dishonored me, because I could honor myself. It’s easier said than done.

This is the reality; no one changes without having to do the work and without finding self love first. Without self love we only live in the reflection of those who want us to conform to their image. I take a deep breath and relax when I remember that the only image I need to conform to is God’s. Even then, it is not God outside of me but God who is a part of my being. The power of love is in our own DNA. I had to get a grasp of this completely, or I would always feel like I would fall short.

It’s work, but when done right everything shifts in the right direction. People leave because they become insulted, irritated, or offended. I’ve learned to let them go. The payoff is others will appear. It’s like a miracle of life. Those that appear are the ones who are ready for what I have to offer and always give me the gift of appreciation in return.

This is the pleasure of life. Walking in the Light of love is always the greatest feeling in the world. Sometimes I forget, like I suddenly have some sort of amnesia. Spirit always draws me back to where I need to be. Sometimes this happens with a struggle but when I turn to the greatest love ever, I always remember.

So, with all of this said; the greatest work I have ever achieved was to love myself the way God does. When this happens everything falls into place. Resistance never allows miracles to happen. Self doubt and struggle will never bring balance or miracles. Yes, my clients have taught me the road to least resistance. The responsibility has always been their own. Mine is to be there, to listen, to interject wisdom when wisdom comes, and to smile at the end of the day.

A job well done always comes with a life well loved.

Loving you from here,

Dr Jenine Marie Howry, Phd

JenineMarie.com