REFLECTIONS: Most of You Don't Know My Past

Nicki Black

August 1, 2018: Most of you don’t know my past. You don’t know all the labels and hashtags I could wear because of my past. You don’t see me defined by labels, articulated by labels, motivated by labels, or subject to labels. Sure, I can define them, and I can articulate them. But my experiences only motivate me to inspire others up and out of those labels, not keep others imprisoned by them.

When is enough, enough? How much anger? How much divisive language? How much topical ointment thrown at deep wounds? The Man who seeks freedom through a conduit of contempt seeks the wrong kind of freedom.

You see, the difference is what side of the labels we choose to live our lives. Are we intentional to be free and victorious? Do we wake up each day and chose to cultivate positivity, availing ourselves to be a solution and peacemaker? Or are we fed by offended people telling us how wronged and disrespected by Man we’ve been? Do we judge before we understand? Do we judge before we seek the real truth of a matter? Do we judge without wanting relationship? A steady diet of any kind builds a body of the same.

I have turned being a subject of labels into those labels being a temporary subject and chapter in my book of life. Written. Lived. Read. Done. I am not a sequel of my past. I am a new book, a new creation, a fresh word.

What you know and see is my now. I am stronger. I’m learning how to love better. I have more wisdom. I’ve gained invaluable experience. My now does not hold onto the bitterness and defeat of my past. I am no longer a closed fist screaming for retribution. I am an open hand, serving with contribution, with wholeness, and healing in my words and actions. Division only enters a room when the door to the room is open.

Thank GOD for the gift of redemption. No matter the ugliness of my life at any juncture, I am clean by HIS blood. I walk out my revelation of HIS grace and mercy every day. How we forget that we had to learn to hear HIS voice, and how to walk in HIS ways. How we forget our toddler years in our faith, let alone in our basic humanity. How we forget we still have so much to learn.

So what you see are not my chains. What you see is not an opportunity to use experiences as excuses. What you see is forgiveness choosing to live a life that’s free from bondage. What you see is the compassionate yoke I have to my brothers and sisters because I choose to see the reality of unity, and not division. What you see is someone who empathizes with familiar labels, but won’t use the labels as an agitator in a pool of toxic water, keeping other spinning round and round, without the answer to let go and get out of the Machine.

I see a world bright and brimming with the promise of a hope and a future, and how I can be a part of that tapestry. I focus on that. We all need to refocus our own lives upon that promise, and let go once and for all to the lies.