You! Yeah man, you same one. What you are about to read has no aim or intent but to reveal the heart of a man – this man – in the roughest way he knows how.
Music was dead to me, for me, inside me. No chord or note had the same allure as when I had just started copying and repeating the lyrics of St. Matthew (Jamaican Gospel DJ – GOOGLE!) in the summer of 2006. Time after time I tried to write songs, tried to practice my instruments, even bribe my mental space into submitting my thoughts to the craft that I was born to create. Or so I thought, since what else what I good for anyway?
Imagine then, when finally leaving the mismanaged horror that is our local secondary educational system and entering the only Visual and Performing Arts institution of its kind in the English-speaking Caribbean, how it must have felt to simply be…dead. Dead to all that art around you. Dead to the poetry you love to pen, the dances that beam with energy from our ancestral rhythmic pulsations, the artwork that captures much more detail than the eye can see. Funnily, one wouldn’t expect to feel nutt’n in a dead state. But is that how your emptiness feels? When you’re up at night listlessly thinking of unfulfilled dreams or regrets you wish you could erase? How about that pain in your chest from all the painful memories that tumble in like the floodgates of Hell?
It was in that time in 2014 that I decided to abandon music for good and find another purpose for my life.
But God is very much alive, watching and ready to whip yuh rass into shape.
See, God breathed his breath of Life into The Woman and the Man when the world was begun. This means we are all connected by One Life, One Breath, One Blood. As time has also shown, this Oneness has been tainted by divisions of every kind that would be too unnecessary to mention here. WE know them. WE live them. WE endorse them. Beneath all that mess, though, there is still the capacity to love and give love to others as Christ intended with his commandments. All that we do has to come from the soul, that Life, that Oneness, that Love. The world runs on it, operates on it in ways we could not even begin to understand -THAT is how interconnected EVERYONE and EVERYTHING IS. My actions will affect you. What you choose to do will cause a ripple effect in my direction.
It was this same one and only Living God who showed me that my love should never have been in the music. I didn’t even love my own self. Any relationship I was in fell to shit, and if one is not connected with herself or himself, there can be no connection to the Creator, for his is in us and is Greater than he that seeks to kill, steal and devour. I don’t have to spin rolls, speak in tongues or cut my locks to know only through God are all things possible, and that if the Lord does not build the house, I am working for nothing. Now, I am creating what I love, with people I love, and pulling an army together that will lead the next generation of this country to amazing victories, accomplishments, and successes while navigating all the obstacles and defeats that will surely come.
So – follow these steps if you feel as broken, shitty and empty as I did:
1. Realize that there is a higher power in control. I will always claim Jesus Christ as my Lord. Not an overseer or slave master, but a friend you can get to know for yourself, and I grew from hating Him intensely to actually loving the guy. Take a few seconds and let that sink in.
2. Know that this higher power WILL direct your steps. You will lose friends, habits, possibly weight, and sleep. You will feel tossed and turned like a robot taxi fleeing the Transport Authority with you in the front passenger seat (no seatbelt). You may even want to give up and die. It’s a phase. You’ll get through it.
3. “Thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven” is no joke. If you have given yourself to God to be used, then make sure you’re ACTUALLY ALLOWING IT to happen. Remember, resistance and stubbornness are what got the Israelites 40 years in the Desert; it’s what is killing Jamaica right now and it’s what will make you damn miserable in the future if you not careful.
Follow these steps, faaaaaammm, guaranteed. It’s the only reason I can write these words today 🙂
Blessings in abundance, Obas and Ayabas (Kings and Queens),
Interested in Shekinah’s music? Find him on:
**Featured Image Captured by Kimora Woolery