You Can’t Move Forward Looking Backwards

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I was first introduced to Lecrae in 2010.  I was managing a gospel rap group based out of Charleston, SC.  They would drive the five hours to Atlanta once a month and we would have marathon studio sessions at my apartment for two days straight where I would produce and record their debut project and rehearse for upcoming performances.  The during the first session, Dyquan, the youngest one in the group had been telling me about this guy named Lecrae and his company Reach Records.  I did my research and while he rapped about Jesus, he’d done so in a way that I’d never heard before.  It wasn’t corny and it wasn’t preachy.  It was real world music that anyone who wanted to listen to something positive could take away from his words.  Since then, I’d begun to see his reach and influence grow a lot.  He wasn’t just the Christian rapper, he was someone that everyone was reaching out to.  BET Awards, all of the main hip-hop blog site, secular artists and producers as well.  When I was trying to stay in Atlanta I even applied for a position at his record company.

This morning I had writer’s block.  I wasn’t sure what I was going to write about this morning.  Scrolling through Facebook, I saw that Lecrae had posted the words that I put up at the beginning of this essay.  It resonated with me.  The first thing I thought about was myself.  For the most part, I only think about the last few years of my life to reassess where I am currently at in my life-kind of like a benchmark; or to write about it to you folks who’ve been reading my stories.  I do get asked about everything that happens a lot.  I’m happy to tell my story because I think there is a lot of learn about perseverance and I feel that it can serve as a testimony of sorts-inspiration.  That’s really it.  I don’t dwell about it.  If anything, there are parts of me that still feels like I’m stuck in the past because some of my circumstances resemble where I was beforehand.  However, I have been doing just about all that I can to continue to move forward.  It’s what I want the most.  I love Timile but I want that to just be a footnote in my life.  She lives through Cydney.  I tell Cydney about her because that’s her mother.  On the days when I feel stuck I remind myself of this: In order to lead Israel in the desert for forty years, Moses first wandered the desert on his own for forty years having to abandon everything he knew.  It sucks but the thought does give me peace knowing that this is only a season.

What I have noticed about people is that most of our irrational fears phobias that keep us from moving forward isn’t the fear of the unknown.  Well, maybe it is; but the paralyzing phobia of the unknown comes from the fear of being hurt in the past.  People don’t want to fail.  They don’t want to feel the way that they’ve felt before and will sacrifice their own potential happiness or what has been ordained to them in the form of a blessing because of this.  I have done that before.  I try my best to not do so as much.  I told a friend the other day who still doesn’t believe that I am a shy person that my boldness comes from bucking my fear of failure.  What do I or we have to lose?  If we’ve been hurt before then we are familiar with it.  It can’t hurt as bad the second go-round.  We’ve accepted that before trying and if we’ve hit what was rock-bottom before there is nowhere to go but up.

In my professional career I have nothing to lose but to keep trying.  If I get rejected, or fired.  It’s happened before.  When it comes to trying again in love, what do I have to lose?  While possible, it is highly improbable that what happened with Timile will happen again.  Have I been hurt since?  A little bit; but my thought process makes it much easier to move on.

We get in our own ways.  It’s almost stupefying when one is told a story by a friend or peer in which we can see that they have been given damn near the promised land and all people have to do is walk into it to receive their blessings.  However, they will just stand there and look at it and even walk away from it because they think that the image in front of them is everything they want but they fear that it is in fact a mirage.

Let go.  I can’t be everything I want to or need to be for Cydney being who I was before.  I couldn’t be the best person I need to be for a new companion thinking about Timile.  I can’t give the best for a new job or career doing or thinking about my old one.  Many times if the same things keep happening over and over again, it’s you (yep you!).  You’re being tested to see if you will handle circumstances differently.  Not only that, but you will be literally be reenacting the same circumstances because you keep bringing your past into your present and ultimately alter your future.

Sure, hold onto some of your hurts and pains from the past.  But don’t do so in an effort to keep a conscious reminder of how you don’t want to feel again.  Do so to be able to help someone later by telling them your story of triumph in the midst of adversity.

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