Ever since I was 11 years old, I have been in a car or been driving a car on the highway that inevitably passed a sign which read, “Don’t Mess With Texas”. This slogan has been part of my Texan upbringing. It was not until I was older that I realized… what was originally designed as a message for the littering Texan population became a cultural icon. The slogan became synonymous with the “Everything is Bigger in Texas” slogan denoting that Texans were not to be reckoned with and we were greater than the average state in the USA or for that matter the World! As a Texan woman, I learned that the slogan also took on the meaning that Texas women were a “tough breed” and that to cross the wrong way with one was not a good idea! Twenty years after its introduction, the success and popularity of “Don’t Mess with Texas” earned it a spot among the best advertising slogans ever. “Don’t Mess with Texas” has been awarded a plaque on the Madison Avenue Walk of Fame and a place in the Advertising Hall of Fame, a distinction given to only two slogans annually. OK, are you getting that I am from Texas? My bragging rights are starting to reign!
Getting back to the original point…. I was traveling on business one day having dinner in one of my favorite accounts. I was my own dining companion that evening so I mosied up to the bar of the steakhouse I was dining at to spend some face time (as we call it in the wine & spirits industry) with the bar manager. Well, a woman dining at night alone can often invite “visitors”. The visitor that joined me that evening was a man who had just moved from Monterey to Chico, California. He was a handsome man and from the vibe I was receiving, he thought I was a beautiful woman. He started to make the small talk that a man often does when pursuing a new opportunity. I, on the other hand, knew that he was a human being that was created on this Earth just like me and because of this new revelation I was going to take a different approach than I might have in the past. I believe the material world has done a good job of feeding us the lie of how a woman & a man should interact. In the past, I have played one of those roles… man hunt… woman be hunted. Midstream into the conversation, we began to talk about deeper things which led me to speak about my passionate romance the past year with God, Jesus, Holy Spirit. I was talking to this man like I was talking to someone about falling in love for the first time (remember the rawness of those emotions?) It turned out that he was also very passionate about the Lord and that is when I realized… he was now talking to me as a human creation. As we were talking I realized, “Maybe men want to have the pressure off of them and be able to speak with a woman like this & a woman wants to speak with a man like this (even if they don’t realize it yet)… spirit to spirit… not flesh to flesh.
The conversation piece that stuck with me that night was when this gentleman said, “You know… I am just realizing… I am only responsible for cleaning up my side of the street”. Those words resonated with me as that is what I have naturally (super naturally) experienced the past year. God has shifted so many things that were littering my side of the street. One night I expressed to Him that I was ready to clean!! I no longer wanted a mess on my side of the street and I pleaded out to Him that he help me as I couldn’t do it on my own. I have attempted many times to clean up after myself & it always fell short… I tried new age, self-help, dahn yoga, my own OCD… I was always searching… it worked for a while. I realized that anything works for a while, however, what I was experiencing right now with God was super natural (don’t those two words seem just that.. super natural?) and by no striving or performance on my part…I was becoming a human being that no longer felt the need to clutter up my life with things that didn’t serve me.
This litter can be different for each one of you reading this, and I encourage you to take on the campaign for your life and dig deep into what that is. I promise you that it is life changing and it starts with prayer. Even if you have never uttered one word to prayer, one word is all you need to start. Pick up that one word and you will want to pick up another and another until it polishes a prayer. That is all you have to do… God does the rest. It is so cool to experience once started. It requires no religion, no guilt or condemnation, just the freedom of “picking up” those first words. I promise you this will lead to complete cleansing. Let me know what you experience as you walk and groom your side of the street!!
And with that… I raise my glass & say, “To all that is good & pure in this world!! And if that doesn’t deserve to be picked up… “Don’t Mess with….”