Written by Alonia Jernigan
Before I begin our short time together here, I must address an issue that was brought to my attention. As I was talking to a client and dear friend, I informed her of my "Destiny Diva" branding campaign. Quickly, she asked, "A diva? What is a diva?" From her perspective, a diva was one who overemphasizes herself through her mode of dress in an effort to gain the attention of others.
But from my perspective, that's just not it. And as far as I'm concerned, neither is a diva "the female version of a hustla," as R&B/pop icon, Beyonce, has hailed. Some have taken measures to identify divas through the use of acronyms. I've heard everything from the descriptive of Divine, Inspirational, Virtuous and Anointed to technical terms that I cannot begin to comprehend.
The formal definition of a diva, however, is the one that's closest to my interpretation. The dictionary basically defines a diva as a woman of outstanding talent, generally in the area of music, but possibly transcending to the areas of theatre, cinema and popular music. To that end, and for my purposes of identifying myself as the Destiny Diva, I resolve that a diva is a woman of strength and focus. But most of all, she is a true disciple of Jesus Christ. She is one who walks in full confidence of everything the Word of God says about the plans for her life.
One of my favorite scriptures, which, quite naturally, supports my definition of a diva, comes from Jeremiah 29:11, "For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end." I also love to stand on 3 John 2, which says, "Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth." These scriptures make it plain that God definitely has a plan for His children. There is, indeed, destiny.
Whether you define destiny as a place, a state of mind or a state of being, I assert that it is essentially the end result of God's ultimate plan for your life. The key, my dear brothers and sisters, is that you must understand and wholeheartedly embrace the fact that God desires to see you live a fulfilled life according to His will.
When we understand this premise, there is no need for children of God to walk around feeling and believing that they are a defeated foe. You may ask what qualifies me to speak so boldly regarding this matter; so much so that I would proclaim to be the Destiny Diva. Well, I'm glad you asked. Let me briefly share my testimony. I won't give it all to you right now, though. There'll be more to come in the following months.
Long story short, I've spent the past 20 years of my life as a journalist. My husband and I had the opportunity to publish a Christian magazine that saw what we thought was a good measure of success. But when it was all said and done, we had to stop publishing the magazine. The expenses were much more than we could bear, but we didn't accept this realization until it was too late in the game.
After we stopped publishing the magazine, I felt like a complete failure. Oh, how crushed I was! The devastation sent me into a horrible state of being. From all indications, I guess one could say I was a depressed. There I was a preacher telling people, "If God gives you a vision, He'll make the provision," and then all that my husband and I had accomplished was now on the ground.
For years, I played the blame game and I conducted a seemingly never ending pity party. But finally God spoke to me and asked me how long I was going to continue the pity party and sit on the gift of writing that He'd given me. I thought about it and began to assert myself a little more. Shortly thereafter, a publication that I had been writing for asked me to write 6 of 35 feature articles. But the next year, I was asked to be the exclusive writer; I wrote more than 50 articles for the annual publication. As a result, my writings for this publication placed me in the Most Outstanding Journalist category for an awards ceremony by a Los Angeles based entertainment news group. This nomination was one that I shared with Susan Taylor (formerly of ESSENCE Magazine) and romance novelist Zane.
Wow, what a mighty God we serve! After I took it all in, I understood that God truly has a destiny for me, but had I not ended the pity party, I could have very well lost my mind. What's more is if I hadn't ended the pity party, I never would have tapped into the destiny that was awaiting me. Today, I am blessed to share my gift of communication in many, many meaningful ways. I look forward to sharing my story in my upcoming book, The Pursuit of Destiny: Making "Yes, I Can" a Personal Reality. I know God has called me for such a time as this to help encourage and inspire others. If He could bring me up from my lowest point, I know He can do the same for you. I look forward to sharing the ways in which our awesome God helped usher me into my destiny. It is my sincere prayer that my experiences will also help propel you from where you are to where you desire to be.
Pushing You Towards Destiny, I am
Pastor Alonia Jernigan