Through-out this series, you will be introduced to several professionals who have graciously offered to sit with me for an interview. The people I have chosen to interview have professional experience in dealing with the specific topics and would not mind (I’m sure) if you contacted them with questions. Ok, enough of my blabbing – here we go…
Seida @ FTHC: Who are you?
Pastor Hood: My name is Belinda Hood
Seida @ FTHC: What do you do? Who do you work with?
Pastor Hood: I serve God and His people as a Pastor, Friend, Advocate and Sister in Christ. I shepherd Love in Action Ministries and Abiding Women of Faith Ministry. I volunteer as a Client Advocate at Pregnancy Resource Center of Will County and mentor in the Woodridge School District. I am a member of the Bolingbrook Christian Clergy Association. I am a member of the American Association of Christian Counseling. I work with people of various ethnicities and age groups. I love God and His people!
Seida @ FTHC: In your opinion, what do people need to do in order to improve our relationships?
Pastor Hood: We must first realize that relationships are essential in life! Relationships are both longitudinal and latitudinal. Their ranges are very broad and engaging. As human beings we need to understand that we were created by God to be “connected” to one another. We are social creatures by Divine design! To NOT foster, establish and maintain relationships of various degrees demonstrates a “disconnection” and an “imbalance” in not only specialized areas of one’s life – but in the entire human race! Building relationships requires sharing, communicating and caring. That’s God’s way!
Seida @ FTHC: What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned about building relationships?
Pastor Hood: The biggest (greatest) lesson that I have learned regarding building relationships is that every relationship matters! Everyone that I have had the privilege to encounter means something special and is worth investing time and energy to maintain. “Building” requires effort, blood, sweat and tears. To assume that a particular relationship is not “connecting” in a timely fashion (by your own timeline) must mean that it just wasn’t meant to be – is erroneous thinking!
I have learned that the tallest building requires (one) to dig the deepest foundation. The “digging” process is what really matters. So it is with building relationships – it takes time to get to know one another. It is through this process that things are “unearthed” yet the end product is amazing! Strong, lasting and formidable bounds are made!
Seida @ FTHC: How can having a relationship with God improve our relationships?
Pastor Hood: One’s personal relationship with Almighty God is the “bedrock” of building all other relationships. When a person commits wholeheartedly to “love the Lord the God with all thy heart, soul, mind and strength; and thy neighbor as thyself” – there is a Divine connection.
The more time spent in the presence of God, worshipping God, reading and studying the Bible allows the Holy Spirit to open up our understanding of who God is and what He expects from us (His children). When one’s desire is to truly please God and live according to His standards – then “people” become important and valued; because God loves and values people. When our vertical relationship with God is number one and solidified – our horizontal relationships will come together. We all meet at the cross!
Seida @ FTHC: What would be your response to someone who has been hurt by church people?
Pastor Hood: Whew! When someone has been hurt by church folks (via gossip, offense, anger, lies, misunderstanding, etc.) it is just as the Bible states in Proverbs 18:19 (NLT) “An offended friend is harder to win back than a fortified city. Arguments separate friends like a gate locked with bars.”
My first response to someone hurt by church folks would be: I’m sorry! As the Body of Christ – we are one! We are often labeled as “all those church folks ____ (mean, nasty, rude, liars, judgmental, hypocritical, etc.) But I would ask the one(s) that have been hurt to not paint all Christians with the same brush! Then I would proceed to explain the difference between Christians and church folks. Now that would take some noted time to explain! There is a grave difference.
Seida @ FTHC: Any more nuggets of wisdom?
Pastor Hood: My nugget of wisdom would be this: James 1:5 “If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and He will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.” What I have seen over the years is that many people seek knowledge. We live in a highly technological and informational society. There is nothing wrong with this. However, knowing the correct/right answer to a problem or situation doesn’t necessarily mean that the person(s) knows how to solve it.
Wisdom is the application of knowledge/information. Using wisdom demonstrates that one has the ability to make wise decisions, even in adverse situations. The book of Proverbs is inundated with wisdom. Wisdom is a God-given gift. It’s starting point is God and his eternal Word. But God does not give His gift of wisdom to everyone. He gives it only to those who earnestly seek it. Wisdom is gained through consistent process of growth and maturity; it requires help from God to attain. That’s why Apostle James instructed the hearers/readers to ask God for wisdom.
Wisdom is NOT always exemplified by white hair and aging. It is exemplified by the ability to discern right from wrong and to make wise choices and decisions. Wisdom is NOT common sense! Proverbs 2:9-11 (NLT) states, “Then you will understand what is right, just and fair, and you will find the right way to go. For wisdom will enter your heart and knowledge will fill you will joy. Wise choices will watch over you. Understanding will keep you safe.” Ask God for wisdom! Amen!
Seida @ FTHC: How can people reach you?
Pastor Hood: I can be reached at 773.745.4526 ext. 700 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also please feel free to visit our website: www.loveinactionchicago.com.
Tomorrow's Post: What Now & GIVEAWAY!!!