"I am because we are and we are because I am." African Proverb
The Book teaches us to "Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that weep." I
offer my deepest condolences to the family of Ahmaud and that our creator comforts their
I heard a man say that the difference between an endangered species and Black Men is that
endangered species are protected by the Federal Government.
This is not new to this area, region, or the south, from Trayvon Martin, Jordan Davis, Tony
Green and now Ahmaud Arbery.
I have seen speeding vehicles slow down for dogs and ducks but this is a disgrace to see
numerous white men in multiple vehicles & guns, hunt & stalk a young black man and then have
the audacity to record it as if they were hunting a deer.
In this Bible Belt there are so many people that claim to be Christian but not Christ like, they
have the American Flag tattooed on their arm and the Confederate flag etched in their heart.
To my black men please don't forget that you are brilliant, bright, and you are black. You can be
a professional, physician, preacher, pilot, or politician, but before they see all of that they first
see Black. You are Christian, Jew, Catholic, Hebrew Israelite, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu,
Agnostic, and Atheist but at the end of the day you are black.
In your blackness there is hope with all the words that's been said. In your blackness there is
brilliance with the thoughts in your head. In your blackness is resilience to keep pushing ahead.
Divided we are defeated, united we prevail. We walk by faith and not by fright.
We have been told for centuries to know your place and to know your role. Today I am here to
tell Black Men that we have had enough Bojangles and now is the time that the Boaz stands up.
We can continue to be the people's entertainer or we can become our kinsmen's redeemer.
My prayer is that the hurt and grief be lifted off of the family of Ahmaud Arbery, that their pain be
replaced with peace, and their sadness with joy. We pray for justice to roll like a river and a
swift conviction of the assailants. For those that need comfort we pray that you be with them in
presence and power. For those that are lost that you realign them with purpose. Cover our city,
state, nation, and globe as we walk to honor the life of your child Ahmaud keep us from all
danger, let your angels encamp around us, in your Holy name we pray.
"Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face." - Iron Mike Tyson
I often use fight analogies to convey my message because it is what I am familiar with. On my personal and professional journey, I have observed that no resistance, no results; no cross, no crown; and no pain, no gain are a few examples of how growth and progress are achieved. Plans take a high level of strategy, tactic, and implementation. When things are coming at you at a super fast pace, it can be challenging to stay on track. When punches are flying towards your face, put your hands up whether the storm and stick to the plan.
Punches don't start with your arms and hands but from the ground up.
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Foundation and fundamentals go hand and hand.
Punches connect with your hands but that is not where they start. Punches start from the ground up. When life is trying to knock you off of your feet, you have to stand flat footed, maintain form and fortitude on your foundation.
For those of you who may not know the story of David and Goliath, this is an epic illustration on how the underdog always has a chance. Goliath was a giant man killer born for battle. David was a young shepherd who had seen danger but never faced combat in this context.
For the untrained eye in combat and conflict Goliath may seem unreachable based on his physique, height, weight, and weapons. It may appear that David was completely out of his field. However, you must not concern yourself with the conversation but completely engage in making contact.
Goliath was equipped with sword and shield while David only had a slingshot. Unconventional times call for unconventional methods. People may be accustomed to fighting issues in a certain type of way that works for them. However it is not about what works for them but what works for you. At the point of engagement David was able to sink a stone into his adversary before Goliath was able to swing his sword.
Hitting the target
The rumble in the jungle. It has been called "The greatest sporting event of the 20th century." It was a major upset victory, with Ali coming in as a 4–1 underdog against the unbeaten, heavy-hitting Foreman. Ali won by knockout, putting Foreman down just before the end of the eighth round.
Hitting the target may not always be simple as it sounds. Just like life you have to adapt and adjust but you must never abort your plans. This is true with family, faith, and finances. If you can maintain your poise under pressure your opportunity to shine will present itself.
For 7 and a half rounds Muhammad Ali looked as if he was a punching dummy for George Foreman. In spite of what appeared to be another beating in the books Ali allowed Foreman to empty his arsenal. With pinpoint precision before the end of the eighth round, Ali knocked out George Foreman and was renamed heavyweight champion of the world.
In closing, life is going to throw it's best punches at you. How well you pivot with the punches will determine how you'll progress.