“How devastating,” she said. “You don’t know your own strength and potential.”
I remember being a young girl, dreaming of the careers that I would have when I grew older. First, like any Baltimorean, I wanted to live to see 18 years of age. I think, even right now, if you were to ask any Black child from Baltimore what they wanted to be when they grow up, you would get one of two possible answers:
- Alive, or
- Something outrageous that they don’t fully trust because of #1
And my dreams of becoming a Pediatric Neurosurgeon like Dr. Benjamin Carson definitely fell into category number 2… especially since I couldn’t even spell the word “surgery” much less fully understand the weight of being a doctor.
There were no doctors, lawyers, or successful professionals in my family. I did not come from wealth, riches, or the American definition of success so I had nothing to build my hopes on. I thought about things, but I truly never imagined that they would come into fruition because no one in my family had a real occupation- they all just had a job (actually, “jobs” because we are Jamaican).
Yet as I continued to watch the news and hear about shootings all around the city, my vision secretly shifted- I just wanted to be alive. In all fairness to my city, I didn’t always think that a stray bullet would kill me, but I thought that I would die by statistics, you know, teenage mother, or permanent fast food worker. (Hear me, Beloved, I am in no way, shape, or form criticizing those who birth children at a young age, but I am saying that I know me and that would have been a difficult weight for me to bear.) When my mother came into this country with her limited education, fast food and housekeeping jobs were the only opportunities that were available for her. She wanted more than that for me… and I will love her forever for how she challenged me over the years.
In the past 19 years since graduating from high school, I have ventured into so many career fields and held so many jobs, yet it is only my current occupation that fills me like none other.
I was divinely created to educate others.
Now, what God has called me to teach and to whom is something that He is still working out in my life and it is not as simple as it appears. LOL!
Yet I know that God has called me to be an educator. As someone who loves to learn in the most non-traditional way, educating others brings my heart an indescribable amount of joy. I genuinely walk into each opportunity with a heart centered on doing just what God has called me to do. Some days are harder than others, but every day is another learning experience for me and for that, I am eternally grateful.
Beloved, the purpose of today’s #MondayMessage is for you to reflect on the opening quote that was spoken about me. The most devastating thing that has ever happened in my life was not what happened to me as a child at the hands of my brother, it was not what happened to me at the loss of jobs, nor was it what happened to me because of depression. The most devastating thing to happen in my life was me not realizing the true purpose of my life and recognizing my potential sooner. Yes, everything happens in God’s appointed time, sometimes He did intend for us to get there sooner (check out the Israelites in Exodus if you don’t believe me.) Yet, maybe I did need these extra years of wandering through wilderness seasons in order to grasp the breadth and fullness of God’s grace, love, and mercy. Maybe I needed to spend 19 years unsure of so much so that I could be sure of this one thing….
Whatever God’s purpose, plan, or will for my life, He has sent me here today to help YOU so that you don’t have to wander for too long. As I said, I am an educator and I facilitate education both inside and outside of a traditional classroom. Beloved, I do not know what you have endured over the years of your life, but I promise you that one of the greatest tragedies of your life will be not realizing the purpose that God has for you. With my whole heart, I encourage you to sit with Him today and hear His heart; let Him reveal His plans for your life.
Before I go for the day, I want to tell you about the woman who spoke those blunt words to me. She is someone that I have loved and admired for the past few years and I have truly grown fond of her. She is more beautiful than she knows and she is a fighter at heart. A sinner, saved by grace, and a woman who truly desires to please the Lord’s heart.
Who is she, you may ask?
Well, she is M.E. and I am she.
I had to look myself in the mirror to truly understand just how much God labored in love to create me. Once I realized that, I had to sincerely ask myself, “what is your problem, Chelle?” Lo and behold, my problem was that I doubted the God in me and I doubted His hand in my life. The unfortunate events of my life were horrible, yes, but nothing was worse than not understanding that God had GREATER for me, His beloved daughter.
Beloved, He has greater for you, too.
There is grace in GREATER!