I grew up with a mixture of diverse backgrounds from religious groups to urban influences and ethnic cultures. As a child, I remember vividly spiritual teachings from others. Teachings that I never fully understood, but something within me believed. One specifically, stuck with me throughout my life. It’s from the book of
Joshua 1:9, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not be terrified or dismayed for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."
God called Joshua to be strong and courageous. I embraced this verse as my own like God was speaking directly to me when I read it. There are hundreds of others. But this one is special to me.
To be strong and courageous is a commandment that I don’t take lightly.
During times when our emotions have been at an all-time high and current events continue to overload us day in and day out, now is when I hold on to that word. It’s moments like this when that commandment speaks clear and louder. We are not to be timid.
Over the last few weeks I’ve been still, at times lost for words. Not wanting to say anything, in fear that I would say the wrong thing or not say enough. Truth is, I don’t have all of the answers. I don’t always know what to say or how to feel. I just know that I’m tired of seeing the hurt and pain. The injustice that continues to haunt us.
Like many of us, I’ve been impacted by racism and injustice. The latest events have just added fuel to the fire that we’ve seen burn for generations.
I’ve never been the one to bite my tongue, but this time it has had a different type of effect on me. I’ve taken a step back to reflect and gather my thoughts. Truth is, I’m learning a new way to process. I don’t want to be shamed into posting or sharing. It’s clear that others have done what they see best in responding to the injustice we continue to face in this country and across the globe.
During this time I’ve had to recondition my own way of processing things. Before this year, I’ve been very selective and choose not to process much. I intentionally put things on the back burner or the shelf. This was my mechanism because there was so much going on which at times felt unbearable. Too much on my plate, no room. So, I pushed it far away. I convinced myself that I would deal with the current events taking place around me at a later time. Truth is, that time never came. Now that most of our daily routines have changed due to COVID-19 it has forced me to learn a new way of processing. Honestly, I’m still figuring it out.
Nevertheless, it’s important to share, connect, and just be. Be vulnerable. Be all that is in you to be. I believe that being strong and courageous is more than just actions. It’s personal feelings, touch, sight, and many others.
I’ve called and reached out to many people during this time. Simply just to say ‘hi’ or that ‘I love you and stand with you’. And it seems as if it is not enough. For me, it’s about solutions. We know the problems, we see the problems. So what are the solutions? It is us as a collective people. We are the solution.
Love is the solution. We need a radical shift in the hearts of mankind that will yield fruit. Good, sweet fruit. It’s clear that we have enough rotten and spoiled fruit around us.
I’ve been working on a few initiatives at a local level aimed to create solution driven conversations. Which we need. But what we desperately need is love.
Truth is there’s nothing we can do naturally to change the current climate in our country. Not a law, a program, or a new invention. What we need is love followed through with action. Love has to be the foundation that all things surface from and through that foundation comes the strategies to bring forth solutions of change.
Maybe this message isn’t for you. Maybe you have another agenda or other motives. But I can’t hide from fear that the message in my heart won’t be accepted or validated by others. I must stay true to myself and who God called me to be -- which is to be strong and courageous in Him.
A Pure Message for you; I know we are hurt from the endless amount of loss. I know we are disappointed by the leaders. I know we are angry at people in power. Some of us are even done, tired, fed up, but I’m here to tell you there’s more. There’s more fight in you. There’s more love in you. Don’t give up. Even if you don’t know what to say or what to do, remember love is easy and love is kind.
We must be restored from the centuries of trauma, violence, hate, and pain. Our ancestors are with us. They are cheering us on. They see how near we are as we walk in all that God has for us. We are Heirs, Kings, and Queens. Our identity is not what we have been enslaved to. Our identity is, in the most high, the creator of all things. “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” ~ 2 Timothy 1:7