Stressed To Rest 

  
Behind the Smile: The 7th Day is The Day of Rest

Thank you for joining me and following my “Behind the Smile” series. I made a conscious decision to share a few things that made me feel guilty, embarrassed, and ashamed. I wanted to be completely freed of those issues. I am so glad that I had the courage to share. I received an overwhelming response from so many people. Many people were able to reach out and say- “Lereca, thank you. I feel that way too, I am struggling with this too, I feel that I can move on now…” 

Honestly the response was so overwhelming that I almost stopped posting after day three. Day three was pivotal. I woke up with extreme anxiety and when 11am hit I was ready to delete the posts. I am so glad I did not delete the post, I think that was the day more people reached and said…me too!  

You guys, we do not have to continue living enslaved to our past. The creator wants us to be free and to have an abundant,prosperous life. We can co-create with him if we surrender. I encourage you today to surrender. HE will not fail you-trust me.

Lastly, I want to thank: 
My family for understanding that I needed to share this information to offer other people hope and to encourage others to realign themselves with GOD. 
My friends-most of you were shocked to learn my truths; and I thank you for your kind words and encouragement.  
My mentors for pushing me to be the best Lereca I can be. Thank you for being there when I wanted to give up.  
My coach Miara Shaw for reminding me that I am capable, prepared, and ready to go to the next level in life.
Team Sprinklisms, for reminding me to launch.  
LeReine for smiling when I was crying, saying affirmations with me, and for your willingness to watch Joel Osteen and TD Jakes instead of cartoons.

Most importantly I thank GOD for showing up so amazing in my life that others will see his greatness. I made it to my 7th day. I am able now to find rest. This is why I smile.~ Lereca Monik

#11AMSmile #LearningToLoveYourself #anewme #anewyou #lerecasmiles #itstimeforachange #liverestored #maven2016 #youreign

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Liking To Loving 

  
Behind the Smile: -My journey on the Road Less Traveled

 
Have any of you had that moment in life in which you were forced to look in the mirror? Have any of you experienced a situation in which you know the CREATOR was calling?  

Well I have. When I became a mother, I was forced to look in the mirror. I LIKED the image that was looking back at me; but I didn’t LOVE the image that was looking back at me. My smile was pretty; but I knew there was something else. God was clearly calling…

So guess what? I began my journey on the “Road Less Traveled”. Something needed to change. I aligned myself with GOD and…

#1- I had to DISCOVER the root of the issues. I learned about what was holding me back. I had to go back to unresolved issues in my childhood. The things I did not want to relive. However, I had to discover the problem in order to find the solution.  

#2-I had to UNCOVER my issues- It was time for me to be transparent. I was ashamed, I felt guilty, and I was embarrassed about my issues. I wrote about them so that I could release them. 

#3- I had to RECOVER his promise- I knew I was destined for greatness so I had to recover what the enemy was trying to steal from me. This was my season of reclaiming my purpose; it was also a season of pruning.  

#4-I had to COVER myself with new thoughts and new habits. This meant that I had to get serious about affirming GOD’s greatness in my life. Affirmations are posted all over my wall. The major shift occurred when I got serious about fasting. I gave up some things so that HE could use me to go up.  

In essence, we might not understand why we were dealt a certain hand…within us is the power to change our lives. 

It’s our job to align ourselves with GOD and let him help us DISCOVER, UNCOVER, RECOVER and COVER our lives. We were all born for GREATNESS. I am so grateful for all of my experiences. GOD gave me LeReine- so that I could learn to love it all! This is WHY I smile.

                   ~Lereca Monik 

#11AMSmile #LearningToLoveYourself #anewme #anewyou #lerecasmiles #itstimeforachange #liverestored #maven2016 #youreign

Dismissed To Determined 

  
Behind the Smile: In Search For My Daddy!
(Dear daddies, sons and daughters need you. They need your presence and love.)

A daddy sets the tone for other relationships in his daughter’s life, he is her first role model, and he should be the first man to tell her- I LOVE YOU!  
I didn’t know my daddy as a little girl, but at some point I met my dad- and he often welcomed me with the words of “You are going to be a dumb broad just like your mom!” WOW! Here’s how those words affected me.

Those words became permanently etched in my brain and subconsciously, I almost accepted them as truth. So, I spent most of my life proving to other people that I was not dumb, and that in fact I was quite smart (and so was my mom- she was brilliant). I spent years fighting to: be cream of the crop, a leader, head of the class, easy on the eye…I kept on fighting. What did most of you see? You saw my smile.  

In turn, I became addicted to the approval of others. I became addicted to the art of perfection. I became addicted to older men. I became addicted to money. I became addicted to emotionally uninterested and unattainable men. I became emotionally unavailable. I became unattached. I became distant. I became very critical. I became lonely. I became cold. I became a hard friend. I become no one’s friend. And then I abandoned others –why? Because over and over he abandoned me. He abandoned me with his words and with his actions. 

All of my life, I was searching for my daddy’s love and I was expecting it to show up in other people. Well it didn’t. I discovered that it was necessary for me to try something else. That’s when I started seeking the FATHER’s face and my heart began to heal. The more and more I developed a relationship with GOD I was given an example of how to express unconditional love. I went from feeling Dismissed to being Determined, feeling Devalued to being Devoted, Feeling Dissatisfied to being Disciplined.
This is why I Smile.

       ~Lereca Monik 

#11AMSmile #LearningToLoveYourself #anewme #anewyou#lerecasmiles #itstimeforachange #liverestored# maven2016 #youreign

Sorrowful To Soaring 

  
Behind the Smile: I Decided to Jump!

It was a sunny day, the trees were green, the wind whispered softly through the leaves. The birds were chirping, soft music was playing from the apartment. I can remember the smell of my grandmother’s perfume and the scent of her freshly cooked Asian inspired vegetarian meal offered. This was the scene. Well this is what I saw with my physical eyes; but not what was seen with my emotional eyes. 

Emotionally, it was raining, the skies were grey, the music was daunting, the home smelled like rotten food, and a scent of cheap cologne gave me a headache. 

Why did I see life this way? To me, there was no reason to live. I wanted to die.

When a child is suicidal, they have lost all hope-they blame themselves for the neglect. When a child is suicidal, they are in a spiritual warfare with the enemy- they just want to escape the pain. When a child is suicidal, they isolate themselves- they do things like lock themselves in closets. When a child is suicidal, they suffer from depression- they have morbid thoughts of how to harm others. When a child is suicidal, they wish there was an alternative to death; but can’t see one- they just want to feel loved. 

Well as a child, I felt unloved, unwanted, unaccepted, uncertain, uncomfortable, unhappy, unnoticed, undesired, and unattractive. Since, I could not see a reason to live; I climbed on top of the building and I JUMPED! When asked what happen I said I accidentally fell. No one ever knew exactly how I felt. I hid behind my smile.

At that moment of life, I decided that there was no reason to live; but the CREATOR had a different plan. Most people considering suicide truly do not want to die, they just cannot see past the pain. GOD changed my perspective I went from feeling SORROWFUL in the valleys to the experience of SOARING high skies. I was called to SOAR! I was called to live! I was called to share this story. I was called to smile.This is why I smile. ~ Lereca Monik 

#11AMSmile #LearningToLoveYourself #anewme #anewyou #lerecasmiles #itstimeforachange #liverestored #maven2016 #youreign

Release To Increase 

  
 November 18, 1995: The Night He Took It

I remember exactly what I was wearing, it was the first time I experienced drinking and smoking. I was wearing my NS Letterman jacket, my Girbaud jeans, and a pair of Timberlands. I still remember taking a sip of Strawberry Hill, rushing through that glass of Tanqueray and Pineapple, followed-up with a drag of a black and mild.  

It was so cold that night, like maybe the high 40’s. I rushed outside because my head was spinning – Yes, I experienced my first official hangover. Then it happened, I needed to vomit.  

When I woke up I recall being trapped underneath him, with no clothing on. I remember each pump getting more and more intense. I felt helpless and paralyzed.  

For some reason, I felt like it was my fault. In some sick way, I felt like I deserved it. Considering at the time I was still coping with the remnants of being molested as a small child, (at this moment I was in high school) I accepted his behavior as normal and I never said a word. But I got him/them back!

I silently got him back and every other guy that I would engage with sexually. From that moment, I decided that I would not be emotionally tied to sex. I decided to control my sex game, and control others with it…and that’s what I did for years.    

When I think back over the years, I wanted to do something differently; but I did not have the tools. You see, I wasn’t taught to love myself and someone taught me at a very early age that sex was a transaction, so I treated it just as that. Instead of confronting or sharing how I truly felt, I hid behind the smile.  
Maybe you too have experienced a similar situation, if so you need to get it out- some how, some way. I don’t want you holding on to the abuse.  
I want you to RELEASE your past so that GOD can INCREASE your future. I asked GOD for healing and he gave me exactly what I asked for. This is why I SMILE.

                      ~Lereca Monik 
#11AMSmile #LearningToLoveYourself #anewme #anewyou #lerecasmiles #itstimeforachange #liverestored #maven2016 #youreign

Cursed To Cause 

  
I Spent Days in the Crack House.

I can remember what the crack house smells like. I can remember what it looks like. I spent time there because my mom was what most people would consider a CRACK HEAD. When your mother is a drug addict if you have a younger siblings you become the parent at a very early age.  

When your mother is a drug addict you long for her love and you often get angry at her because she can’t love you back. When your mother is a drug addict you tell other people that she can’t come around because she’s working- when in fact she doesn’t really have a job. When your mothers a drug addict you blame yourself for her short falls. When your mother is a drug addict you live in fear wondering if you will become a drug addict too.

You see I lost my mother to drugs my 2nd semester in college. I asked GOD why…why did he give me those cards? Why was my mother a drug addict? Why did she die? 

He made this very clear… She was the medium that he used to get me to earth. I said okay GOD; but why did you take her from me. He said “Lereca if you experience a loss, just know I will bless you with something greater!” My latter will be greater! I receive it! 

GOD knew I would be willing to share my story/ her story. I am freed from the bondage that I experienced from not having my biological mother. Hopefully this story will offer freedom to someone else. 

God is humorous. He blessed me with my mom’s greatest assets: her ability to tell stories and her smile.    

What one might have considered my CURSE is now my CAUSE. This is why I smile. I learned to LOVE me…all of me. ~Lereca Monik 

#11AMSmile #LearningToLoveYourself #anewme #anewyou #lerecasmiles #itstimeforachange #liverestored #maven2016 #youreign

Foster To Favored 

  

Most foster care children are abandoned, neglected, and physically and/or emotional abused. When you spend one day in foster care- you are labeled a foster care child. Your future is predestined for you. Statistics tell us that foster care children will be welfare dependent, juvenile delinquents, single parents, uneducated, homeless, and drug addicts.

Unfortunately, for years I never wanted to share this truth because of the stigma. WHY? People think foster care children are dangerous, stupid, thieves, and liars. That is not true. Foster care children were hurt or experienced some form of neglect at a very early age. It is not their fault. 

To all the foster care parents, sometimes people treat you differently as well. Here’s my public statement of saying THANK YOU. Thank you so much for showing your undying love to children that feel unloved, unwanted, and abandoned.  
I am so glad that I stopped labeling myself as only a foster child to being GOD’s favored child. My personal transition was not easy; but through it all, I learned to see myself how GOD sees me and I learned to love myself.  

I am also glad that I have been able to mentor other young girls along the way. Precious, I am so proud of you! This is WHY I SMILE!

        ~Lereca Monik 
#11AMSmile #LearningToLoveYourself #anewme #anewyou #lerecasmiles #itstimeforachange #liverestored #maven2016 #youreign

Your Masterpiece 

  
Good Morning,
I am so grateful that I’ve made it here.  
I am so happy that I am willing to share my imperfections with you. People often judge people based on how they look, the character that’s portrayed, or the story we form based on our personal perception of them. 

Many of us are not comfortable with acknowledging our truths or hidden secrets. Some of us go to sleep every night with some form of struggle. Some of us are dealing with baggage and issues that stem from our past like: addictions, mommy/daddy problems, mental health/suicidal concerns, poverty mentalities, physical ailments, molestation, lack of self-esteem, anger, spiritual warfare, generational bondage, adulterous behaviors, bitterness, jealousy, worthlessness…..the list goes on and on.  
I want YOU to know. It will be okay. Do not let your HISTORY dictate your future STORY.   
As I invite you into another dimension of my life, I hope that my story will encourage or inspire you or at least change your perspective on sharing your story.    
For years, people would say “Lereca you are so beautiful. Lereca you have such a beautiful smile!” While I am so glad I am blessed with this smile, my smile was also something that I could project to hide my truths. Behind the smile, I was broken and I was a mess.  

My story is a story of struggle and strength, tests and testimony, fear and faith, problems and promise, and most importantly lust and HIS LOVE.

This is my public declaration of saying….BUT GOD! I am allowing him to turn my broken pieces into masterpieces. Make each day your masterpiece. 
 ~Lereca Monik 

Join me for Behind The Smile-this week at 11 am

#11AMSmile #LearningToLoveYourself #anewme #anewyou #lerecasmiles #itstimeforachange #liverestored #maven2016 #youreign