You see I’m a skinny guy but I’m not as skinny as I used to be. Because I didn’t realize how important working out was to me until I reached my lowest point. I reached a point in my life where I was just fed up. I was fed up with people not picking me on their team because of how I appeared. I was fed up with the demons inside of me telling me that I was nothing. And most important of all, I was fed up with looking at myself in the mirror and thinking wow is that it is that all that you can bring to the table? So, I wanted to prove to myself that I can bring more to the table. I wanted to prove to people that you are going to regret counting me out, and I wanted to prove to the demons inside of me that they were FUCKING WITH THE WRONG PERSON! I used exercise as not only my come back, but also as a way to improve my self-esteem. I wanted to build my confidence up, I wanted to appreciate myself more, and I wanted to not think of myself as a twig again. Now I still have a lot work to do but I am happy with how far I have come. I used to weigh around 150lbs but now I weigh 172lbs. I use to struggle with certain weights, but now I use those same weights for my warm-ups. Now the point of the story is this, find a way to help yourself improve more. Step out of your comfort zone and do something different that will help you improve yourself in ways that you couldn’t imagine. Because I know for me working out has helped me improve myself not only physically but mentally. So, I am happy I reached my lowest point because I found something that helped me rise up from it.
When you have a purpose in this world you tend to walk around nervous. Because most of the time you know what it is that you are suppose to do but it takes courage to actually do those things.
The question today is what are you doing to change your environment? What are you doing to influence yourself or other people? You see, something that I have learned is that many of us are influenced by trends started by many people. For example, Allen Iverson started the trend of Cornrows for many young people. Michael Jackson had everyone around the world trying to lean forward without falling. Taylor Swift had most of us singing in the mirror to a heartbreak song in the early 2000s and Mariah Carey had everyone singing “ALL I Want For Christmas Is You.” Now, I know you are probably thinking “Well the reason these people probably had an influence is that they are famous.” But, what if it’s because they aimed at our emotions and love of things such as; dance, style, and music. You see everyone can do it. Everyone can have an influence or change their environment just by doing something simple. It could be just smiling at someone who may be having a rough day. It could be offering someone assistance, picking up a pencil for someone who dropped it, telling a joke to someone to make them laugh, and so much more. You see, it’s all about starting a trend that benefits everyone overall. One trend that I think changed the environment is TikTok. Now I don’t watch TicTok much, but what I have noticed is that many people are using it. Many people are using TicTok to do many things such as; singing, making people laugh, inspiring, educating, etc. One reason that it has such an influence is because of the change that it has brought to our environment. It allows for us to relate to people who come from different walks of life topics, etc. So, what are you doing to influence yourself or other people? What are you doing to change your environment? Because everyone can do it you just have to be willing to give it a try.
The sun rises in the morning and sets in the evening. Once the sun is gone the moon rises in the evening and sets in the morning. It’s a constant routine of daylight ending and moonlight starting, and vice-versa. You see, if we look closely at the weather there is a lesson to be learned from it. For instance, even during our sunniest of days, we still experience some darkest moments. And when the sun sets we experience darkness, but there is always light at the end of it.
Imagine all of the sins that you have committed, placed into one big garden. Now, imagine some of these sins staying as small as a rose but some of them growing to be as big as a tree. The ones staying small are the ones you nurture the least, but the ones growing big are the ones you nurture the most. Now imagine another garden, but this one is full of goals and dreams. This garden doesn’t grow at all, and all of your goals and dreams stay the size of a seed. So because of the lack of nurture, you didn’t put into your goals and dreams, your sins grew larger which ended up destroying your entire garden. You nurtured sins of judgment towards people but didn’t nurture those goals to help them. You nurtured sins of lying and cheating but didn’t nurture goals of honesty and loyalty. You nurtured sins for hatred but didn’t nurture goals for love. You see we walk around and expect our garden to grow when all we are doing is poisoning it by nurturing the garden of sins that keeps it from growing. As the saying goes “We ask for the bag from God but as soon as we receive it, we forget why we asked for it in the first place”. So, why do we ask for the sunlight, the water, and the dirt for our garden if we are only going to pour them into things that prevent our garden from growing?
This season is a season of release. A season of releasing all of those toxic people out of your life, a season of releasing all of those negative relationships you are in, and a season of releasing all of those doubts and insecurities that are all bundled inside of you. Because this is a season of releasing all of those chains that are dragging you down. Now it will be hard to release those chains. It will be hard because we are so used to having them. Honestly, we don’t know how our lives will be without them but we do know how our lives are with them. Which is why we must take the risk to release those chains that are doing nothing but bringing us down. So in this season, focus on releasing those chains that are dragging you down. Hey, even I have chains that are preventing me from reaching the next level. But we are not PRISONERS. So we will break free of those chains and embrace the freedom that we will have given ourselves. So break free, let go, and release those chains to begin your change.
As time goes by. As I start achieving my goals. As I start changing my life, I think to myself how far I have come? I think to myself how far I have grown? And I think to myself how far will I go? You see, at the end of the day it’s all on me. Every word written, every word spoken, every heart touched, every bond made and broken, and every step I take is all on me. Most people don’t know what I’m truly thinking unless I let them know. Most see a smile and assume “oh he’s happy everything is ok, ” but in reality, they don’t know what I’m truly going through mentally. You see, I put everything on myself because I believe I can change the way someone thinks and change the way someone sees the world. I believe I can change the situation my family is in and I believe I can lend a helping hand in so many ways. But to do that, I decided to put it all on myself. Put every responsibility I didn’t own, every action I didn’t take, and every opportunity I missed on me. I put everything on myself because yes, at times I can be hard on myself, but it’s because I demand more out of myself. I demand more knowledge, more strength, more willingness, more ambition, more patience, and so much more out of myself. Because yes, I know that when you have a team you can be strong together, but imagine if you were strong by yourself and you brought that same strength to a team that grew over time. There would be nothing you couldn’t achieve. That’s why it’s all on me it always has been and it always will be. Now, yes I have God on my side as well as family and friends but at the end of the day, it’s all on me. Every mountain climbed, every brick-built, every prayer made, and every phone call is all on me. To all of those who are fighting some tough fights, that it’s all on you. It’s all on you to get you out of what you are in. Think of it as no one is coming to rescue you so you must rescue yourself. Because at the end of the day it’s all on you to choose whether or not you need the help. It’s all on you to choose if you need the prayer and it’s all on you to choose whether you want to change your life or not. The choice is simple because it’s ALL. ON. YOU!
You see, as a baby, we have to be taken care of because at that time we aren’t able to take care of ourselves. We have to be fed, bathed, changed, and so much more. We depend on other people to take care of us because we aren’t able to do it ourselves. Now, fast-forward into our teenage years. There are certain things we have to do on our own now, but there are also new responsibilities added on like homework, chores, learning how to drive, having a curfew set, and many more. Now, the kicker is some of us are lucky enough to have parents/guardians who believe in us, tell us we can do anything we set our mind to, and help guide us in a good direction. Now, some of us weren’t given that opportunity. Some of us didn’t have parents/guardians who loved us, believed in us, and guided us in a good direction. So instead, some turned to anyone willing to lead them in any direction. Most people ask why does this person have such bad behavior? Why does this person lack common sense? Why does this person have no goals? etc. You see, people look at these kinds of people and ask all these questions, but they don’t realize that this person might be someone who didn’t have any guidance in life. This person didn’t have anyone to show him/her good matters so they followed someone who showed them bad ones. This person didn’t have anyone to show them how to work for what you want so he/her followed someone who showed them how to steal it. This person didn’t have someone who had goals for themselves so they followed someone who had none. This person didn’t have a home to go to so they followed someone who had given them a house. You see, without guidance in our lives, we can get out of control and lost, therefore we’ll turn to anyone who can get us out of it. It doesn’t matter if their intentions are good or bad, we will listen to them because it’s the only guidance we are receiving. So, why do we judge people based on the lack of guidance some of us have over others? Is it because we think we are better than them? Is it because we lack guidance ourselves? Or is it because we just love seeing people suffer more than us? I was always told to treat everyone with respect, but most of all treat everyone the same way you want to be treated. So, how do we all want to be treated? What is this guidance that we all so desperately need?
We’ve talked about walking in the shadow of men, but what about walking in the shadow of women? You see, as a man I have heard, seen, and learned many different things about women that I’m still in the process of understanding. You see, women have accomplished so many great things as well, but also like men they have faced and caused destruction as well. They have cheated, lied, manipulated, tortured, used, and abused themselves and others. They have faced backlash and shame such as if their ass isn’t as big as others, if they aren’t as pretty as others, if their hip size isn’t as small as others, and so much more. You see, nowadays women will be put into different categories such as if she’s wearing this she’s a whore, or if she acts this way then she’s gay. It’s to the point where some women have become very self-conscious and insecure about themselves because of how they look and they’ll do almost anything to get that perfect body just so they can fit in with the crowd or not be judged as much by others. You see, I believe that if a woman wears certain clothes it’s not because she wants to show her private areas off, it’s because she wants to feel and look good for herself. Now, I also believe if a woman is wearing certain clothes for attention we shouldn’t go around assuming every woman is like that all because of one. Honestly, I feel like most women just want a chance, a chance to be treated as equals, a chance to not be looked at as sexual objects, and a chance to be able to think on their own. There’s a reason why some women choose to be independent, even though they know they can easily get a man. They prefer to not have one because they don’t want anyone telling them what to do. Now, I do believe women walking in the shadow of other women have been blessed with a gift and a curse as well. But like men, that curse can be cured and that gift can be used. For example, not all women are meant to be mothers in this world because some women will hurt, neglect, and abuse their children. It’s sad because there are women who want a child but are having problems producing one. There are women who would give their all just to be blessed with a child to protect, nurture, and love. Because for every cursed woman there will always be one who can make the sun shine on a rainy day and fill the empty hearts with love. It’s sad to admit how some women will go to their graves never once becoming the goddess they were meant to be. All because of the shadow they refused to clean. But, the others will go to their grave as goddesses on earth because of the shadow they cleaned and made new again.
Resisting and Refilling is something very important that I have begun to take notice of. It’s something that I have begun to add to my life so that I can improve my mental and physical state overall. You see, I’ve learned that there are many things in our life that we are going to have to resist. Those things include drinking, lustful thoughts, laziness, procrastinating, overthinking, sexualization, negative self-talk to ourselves and others, and many more. And refill with things such as working out, meditating, praying, learning, executing, and overall healing ourselves in every way. You see, people talk about how you should stop overthinking but never have an answer to how you should stop. They talk about how you shouldn’t have lustful thoughts but don’t have the answers for it. I believe the reason for this is because many people know how to resist something but they don’t know how to refill it. You see, it’s like working out, when you work out your body is being torn apart and broken down, and the way to refill it is through drinking water and eating the right food. It’s like good and bad, these two are partners and if you think you can live your life without one or the other then you are in for a rude awakening. Honestly, I was someone who struggled with resist and refill. Because I would resist the lustful thoughts but I had nothing to refill it with, which would cause them to happen again. However, I learned that through the refilling of prayer and writing that I could resist lustful thoughts so I would be able to strengthen myself mentally. So, I say to you find out what is in your life that you want to resist, and once you have the answer figure out how you will refill from these things. Because it’s hard to resist but it’s also hard to refill especially when things have become a routine for you. This is why you must make it a routine to practice resisting and refilling every day until you have mastered them both. Because the only person that can truly stop you from being able to resist and refill is yourself.
Walking in the shadow of men can be tough life at times. You see, us men have accomplished so many things, but we have also caused so much destruction. We have lied, cheated, raped, harassed, begged, sinned, and caused so many more traumas to the point where most women, and even most men have separated themselves from us. Like men, most women have insecurities and trust issues, and most of it is due to the relationships they’ve had with women. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to deal with the same conversation about men, and how we all are the same, and how we all just want to swing that dangly thing in between our legs. Now, I try to understand, but there’s also apart of me that wants to defend that term because not all men are the same. Most men aren’t cheaters, most men aren’t liars, most men aren’t rapist in fact some actually have mothers who have been raped, which is why they promised to never hurt a woman, and also most men really only want one thing. And that’s to be given a chance, a chance to show that they aren’t like other men. A chance to show that you can trust them. A chance to show that you can come to them in time of need, and a chance to show you that even on your darkest days, we will still love you, and help you overcome them. You see, walking in a shadow of men, to me, is a beautiful gift that can easily be turned into a curse if we allow it to be. But like most curses, they all contain a cure to them. I believe the cure to the shadow of men is to first realize that we are not perfect, we are not all strong, we weren’t born full of lustful thoughts, it’s something that we learned, and that we are all not the same. Honestly, we are all not protectors because as many times as a man can hurt you, there will always be one that can protect you. Now sure finding these men can be hard sometimes, even the men that were once attackers, turned out to be protectors in the end. It can’t be something built in one day, it’s something that takes time. It’s takes time for men to realize our actions, even once we have been told them. It still may not click right then and there. But, overtime the shadows of most men can be cured and healed. Now, some may take it to their graves. Never becoming the new man they should have be. But, others will break out of their cocoon, and become the warrior that has been waiting on them the whole time.