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Biracial-Gay-South Carolinian-Christian

Birth simply caused me to stand out, and maybe my words (thoughts) will do the same.

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Courageously Expressive

Yes, I know you see them. Five inches high, cow pattern print and black latch buckles. They are my stage, my soap box, my way of showing the world I am rising above all before me. I am taking on the challenges of the day and the goals I have set before myself and realizing that nothing is impossible.

Yes, in my heels I am powerful, courageous, tall and free. Making my physical body rise closer to the one who created me and feeling the satisfying freedom of joy with every step. Walking through crowds with stares and scars of judgment, owning all they are saying and owning the core truth, “this life is mine.” I am a prince because God has created me to be courageously expressive and free. I love this man.

Haven’t you ever done it? Set yourself apart from the rest. Weather it be physically, verbally or mentally. Doing something completely against the grain, totally harmless, but so different it caused people to think. Freeing your soul and opening the doors of new and endless opportunity. While allowing others to challenge their preconceived thoughts of how they ought to live because “society” says so.

I and we are spiritual beings having a human experience, spiritual being have an earthly experience, spiritual being having a temporary growing experience called to share with others. Rules don’t dictate my life, life does not limit me and limits and I work together to reach new heights of joy and amazement. Reaching beyond the social norms and stretching the realms of reality to take full ownership of the reality that is my own. I know I am a prince because God has created me to be courageously expressive and free. I love this man.

I see it in you. Don’t you? That spark, that light, that beautiful aura borealis waiting to starburst from your soul and completely captivate those around you. Why are you holding back? Why don’t you set it free? What are you afraid of? What could possibly be limiting you from showing the world the sharp kaleidoscope of colors God has blessed you with? I believe in you. I have faith in you and that’s because I have faith in the source of faith that guess what, has faith in you. That’s right He has faith in you. He believes in you. You are all princes and princesses because he has created you to be courageously expressive and free in only ways that you can. No one else can express the beauty of your soul the way you can. I believe in you, and so does He.

So do it! It is that simple. Take the step and reach out, act out, stand out from the rest and show us who you are. Listen to the song of you spirit and pick the instruments needed to resonate the brilliant harmonies that only you can. The doors are open, the audience is being seated and it is your curtain call. Take the stage and do not worry about what others may think. Because after all you are royalty, princes and princesses because God has created you to be courageously expressive and free.

I love you…

He loves and believes in you…

Its time… Sssshhhhhhh… its time, the world is listening…

Play beautifully beautiful and be free.

2010 Review and 2011 Excitement!!!

It seem as though every time I post a thought it begins just this way. “long time no see”…. ugh… I promise to keep this updated and to keep all my thoughts flowing. 🙂

The following insert is something I wrote on New Years Eve as i began to feel the shift into the new year. I hope you enjoy and please let me know what you think.. Love you all.
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Picture it if you will, my quite room, big bed and an array of items each holding faint memoires of the past year. Some joyous and some heartache but each second they were apart of has made me the person I am today. For some time now, I have been reflecting on the past year with gratitude and amazement. I was not aware so much could happen in one year; much less, I never thought I could actually place a ripple in the sea of life that would blend so beautiful with the lives of others. However, I fell as thought I have.

I was having a conversation with a great friend the other night and he expressed some frustration. Going into 2011 seemed bland to him, it just flows and to him, there is no “punctuation”. For him, and many other young adults, we place our beginning and endings in the same calendar as the school year. So naturally, once we move on for the school setting, we must begin interpreting our beginnings and endings for ourselves. Placing a “punctuation” on more than just a calendar but also in our hearts and emotions. Allowing the tangible sensation of fresh beginnings to wash over us as we chart out the next year or years.

For me to truly allow the feeling of new beginning to have their full impact, I must first look at what has already happened to get to this point. What mountain top and valley low experiences have been in my path and what have I learned from each of them. Therefore, in keeping in the tradition of labeling life, I have decided 2000-2010 is the “Decade of Education”. In the past ten years, I have graduated high school, graduated college and have learned who I am and in what ways I can contribute to the world.

Since ten year does contain a great deal of information, I have decided to share on one of the most important areas of my life, my faith. Through my faith I develop my character and find the strength and courage to conquer the world.

In 2008 I began a pursuit of my authentic self. The self I was created to be. I never thought that in this pursuit I would grow closer to my creator and develop the strongest faith of my life. A faith that does not allow me to fear or restrict myself for showing the world the diamond the lord has made me to be.

While I was in college I learned those with the greatest fait presented themselves in the most pristine way. From the way they look, to how they speak and to even what they would “allow” in the services or on the worship stage. “Only the best for Christ” is a comment I heard quite often threw forced smiles. (Translation=you are not talented enough to share.) A thought so upheld in the church that it caused leaders to over look someone who had a genuine passion to share what Christ has laid on their hearts, rather pay someone to come in and deem what they found good enough. Who are we to judge what God finds worthy for his sanctuary? We are just people, but the moment you give someone a title or a seat of power they forget that we were simply called to make a joyful noise. Instead worship becomes a production, a SHOW!!! A place where all do their best to sell this thing called faith. The best show gets the biggest audience, or I’m sorry, Congregation. That is what we call them.

The more I began to search for my true self the more God pulled at my heart to listen to the marginalized. The unwanted, the hurting, the talentless and the fashion less and the as I listened I not only heard their cries but also began to clear the fog of what my fellow leaders where saying. “We can never allow them on the stage! Did you hear…..” and an array of others. However, my all time favorite, in the middle of a service, someone I once considered a great role model of Christ leans to me and says, “Someone should really help her with her hair. It is really distracting me for worshiping.” Reeeallllyyy? All I could think. But for some sad reason I fell into this commercialized faith.

However, when I moved to San Francisco I began to see the church work at its full capacity. Sitting in the service with many faces, ethnicities, religious, faiths, social statuses and a smorgasbord of life paths I felt a warmth and love never felt here in our quickly cooling churches. There were no cookie cutter Christians, no expectations, and no strange ways of worship. Just a feel of come, share, live and learn. Celebrate your lives together and watch Christ work with and through us all. Such a beautiful display of the kingdom of heaven.

Many people I worshiped with would never be allowed to darken a doorway of the churches of my past, and if they did, it would not take long before someone would begin an intervention. Suggesting a small group, praying together, showing them what a “true Christian” looks like and before you know it, that dear sweet normal soul begins to conform to the majority. Reading and studying about faith but never truly living it out. Settling.. It’s easy to put on kakis and a button down but it hard to live with or even TRULY befriend someone the church calls a sinner.

In this past year, I prayed 2010 would be the year I took my faith from paper and put it into action. Applying all I had learned and loving on others with courage, knowing God was with me through it all. Giving others an ear and a place where they could contribute to the world in the way they felt best. Laying myself aside and watch others achieve great goals and allowing God to work in it all. And guess what, HE DID!!! He blessed me this year in so many great way.

The greatest lesson I have learned is that the more I believe and trust God can do great things, the less expectations I place on others. Looking at them the way he does, with amazement and beauty. Never stopping anyone from showing the gifts they have on their hearts and loving all, no matter what. Never settling my faith for what the world says it should be, but instead living the fullest with no fear because he has me in the palm of his hand.

So in closing, going into 2011 is extremely exciting!!! I am going in with a mindset of success but knowing and trusting that the greatest success for me comes from his peace. A peace I pass to others in love and sacrifice. We are given much to bless other… how will you bless someone?

Thinking in new ways…

Good Morning world!!!! I hope everyone is doing well.

As many of you may know, I have a very tight calendar and the few times I have to write are very important to me. So the writing you will see from here on out are the ones I have placed in my personal journal. Some of the information you will read is very close to my heart and have all really been items on my mind for quite some time, and I am finally letting them out.

You may have question about some post you will see, and it will be natural to do so. I only ask that you ask me via email or text. Feel free. Or if you would like to post something on the bottom of my blog, I would love that as well.  With this said, Lets begin this journey together.

The following insert is something placed in my journal as I thought about my faith and a very protected part of my life.

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My life quote is “We are not the images we see”. A quote running deep into my faith and felt as a true parallel to being created in God’s image. I am just a vessel. He lives in me. No matter how people see Michael, it is all irrelevant because the one and only God drives this mysterious and unique vessel. As I think more about the quotes relation to my life there seems to be an even deeper meaning.

If the one and only God lives in me, I can’t help but think that he lives in others. Causing me to search past my preconceived thoughts of someone and look at the true person under it all. Not to abandon anyone based on sex, age, race, past, thoughts, actions, religion or anything I may not agree with is very challenging, but after all, if they are living then God must not be done piloting their unique vessels.

Even more, there is another interesting parallel in my life, which has truly caused me to think more about this quote.

As a performer, my life is often transformed into something much more. For a brief time I can allow my conception of a character to show as I portray them in a musical or play. (Creating an image) But there is one character who’s life has forever been tied to mine.

The creation of a queen has truly been a challenge and a joy in my life. Causing my life quote to soar to new heights and allowing my voice to be heard in new volumes.

When she is seen, she has a grace, elegance and a presence about her many say has never been felt in her social settings. A queen who reaches beyond the lime light to show a community love and support which it greatly needs. She is in essence, a saint. Which I created and I love her dearly. Sound familiar?

I created her in my image. With the values and ideals of my faith still in place, it is I who lives in her and I drive this vessel to do good works. Works to prosper the community and not to hurt it. Much like God did and does for me.

My favorite nights are when she has a heart to heart with someone. Speaking in a way that causes them to think on new levels and consider resolutions they never thought possible. Maybe for a brief moment she has caused that soul to feel its value and know someone cares. They my cry or rest a head on her shoulder, but in that moment she has caused them to feel loved.

And later, when I meet them, they don’t recognize me. Because after all, she was not the image they saw. She was simply allowing my voice to flow threw her. To think of being created in God’s image really motivates me, but to create in my own image allows me to truly feel what he feels. I am honored to have such a talent and to be able to show my love on grand new levels.

Think about your image. What are you showing if you are not the image everyone sees?

Long time no see!!!

Good Morning everyone!! It has been quite some time since I have written, and this is only a fact because i forgot I had an online blog. LOL>… Thats just how my brain goes. But I am ready to continue what I once started.

I hope everyone is well. I have been fine. Just a major serious of ups and downs, all of which I will shed light on later. However, here is a post i put on my Facebook last June. I just woke up in the morning and had so much on my heart, so i unloaded like crazy. Happy reading!! If this is your first time or even revisit of this writing, please tell me what you think. Love you all..

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It has been a while since I have posted anything and needless to say a lot has taken place since. Some mountain top experiences and some valleys, but I hope in the end I will be made stronger through it all.
As many of my friends may know, my life has never had a dull moment, only extreme situations. Some of the best and some of the worst, but maybe I will be stronger in the end.

Quick updates:
• Senior Recital
• Graduation from Southern Wesleyan University
• Coming out (scary, and freeing)
• Moved to San Francisco
• Creation of a new me. (happier me)
• Moved back to South Carolina (scary, and enslaving)
• Deconstruction of the me I built (not so good)
• Found new job, quit.
• Get other job, quit.
• Now have the job I always wanted, STAYING FOR GOOD!!! (big things will happen)
• Honest about who I am. (lose friends, gain new ones, in a valley)
And now:
• Beginning to tell all. (who knows what will happen)

I said earlier that I was being honest about who I am. For years I hid who I was, in hopes that maybe my conception of my identity was wrong. That I truly could be the person everyone wanted me to be, following the rules so closely there was no possible room for error, and surrounding myself only with people fitting in my identity circle. Basically putting on a mask every time I looked in the mirror, and erasing the true person under it all, a person of brilliant color (Joseph’s coat has nothing on the prism of my heart..lol..), great joy, and stamped with the thumb print of the most high. (not to mention excellent fashion…lol..)

From the beginning of my college career, I learned that to survive in bubble sphere you must quickly learn to read people and only do and say things that bring about a good reaction. So that is what I did, and I collected excellent results. Falling in love and giving my heart completely to those around me and making it to the top of many great groups, developing great relationships, and having some of the best friends anyone could ever ask for. Many I would lay my life down for to this day, even if they wouldn’t allow me back to their choirs.

I was on the inside with people of great power. People who use to call or text to share a prayer request, invite to an activity, or even have lunch to discuss the burden on their heart for another individual in the community. Through worried eyes and pressed lips they would share their fear of the path someone was on but never make an active step in understanding or knowing that persons heart. Just pray and watch is all that would happen. And now those people look at me with the same worried eyes and pressed lips. Why is it that the point of honesty is met with pressed lips and unusable gifts? From what I was taught it should be summed up as a sickness in the body, when the mouth is fully functional but the feet cannot move. Oh wait, there is a better name for sickness, the term is Paralyzed. Paralyzed church bodies.

Now I want to make an active step in letting everyone know that I am no longer a member of a paralyzed church. God loves all for who they are and what they can offer to his world. (the most beautiful thing a flower can offer to the world is to simply bloom) He knows the pain and hard ships we all face and he wants to love on us in ways we can never know. Until the paralyzed congregations begin to gain strength in their legs there will always be those on the outside searching, hoping, and removing the dust out of their eyes, while their brothers and sisters continue to ornament the beautiful cherry stained steaks placed in theirs.

This is only the beginning of many more post.. my journal is filled and ready to be emptied.. lol.. so know there are many with questions and comments, so please feel free to share your thoughts and concerns. I will happily answer them as best as I can.

Love you all..

Keep Your Giraffe to Yourself

It was a beautiful Saturday afternoon. People were out shopping, walking, running, ridding bikes, and spending time with family and friends. I could tell by the way some were going about that this was how they normally spent their weekends. It was very relaxing.

As I was approaching one of the crosswalks, I joined a group that was already waiting to cross. While we were standing there the most peculiar person showed up. I heard laughter and a few girls snicker, so me being me, I had to turn around. When I looked, I saw a man on a unicycle in the funniest outfit.

            He was wearing a full pink garment; pink spandex to be exact, from head to toe and arm to arm with little pink fairy wings. Quite a talented man but I don’t think he was all there. (In the head) He flapped his arms to simulate flying; circling the group till it was time to cross. This type of sighting I like to call a Giraffe.

            Giraffes, being taller than other animals and beautifully colored usually catch the eye of any anyone, even if they are not looking. That is exactly what this man did, caught everyone’s eye.

            In the city this happens daily, and I know that back at home most giraffes would never be allowed or even thought of. I think this aspect is what I love most about this place. People have a voice here and they are not afraid to share their opinion on any subject. People challenge one another with thoughts and actions and no one really gets offended. They respect what the other has to say and accredit everything to a difference of opinion.

            For the first time I can express the thoughts and ask the question on my mind without having a label stamped across my forehead or feel as though I’m breaking some taboo law. I’m a person here; I’m not governed by the set traditions of the past and I’m free to discover life as according to me. What an amazing since of freedom!!!

            Granted I’m not forgetting the morals and faith I already posses, however stacking on them to create more well rounded Michael. Giraffes are moment in my day that I look forward to. They broaden my view of social freedoms and help me understand that not everything in life can be found in a bubble.

            My prayer right now is that people start creating more giraffes in society. Making a statement for themselves and the world they would like to see tomorrow. Nothing ever changed by following tradition. Think of everything we take for granted. They all came out of someone’s concept of a better tomorrow. (their giraffe)

            I love this City and soon I will begin expressing my own personal giraffes. J Can’t wait to hear what people will have to say about them… LOL!! Love ya.

New Life

     

 Well here we go. New sights, new sounds, all together new life and I must say I slightly miss the old, but I will never moved forward if I keep looking back. So I will keep looking forward and pray that each step is a correct one.
 
      If you are reading this please keep in mind these are my random thoughts and experiences in a wonderful new city. There will be mistakes, conflicting thoughts, and most of all some of the most challenging concepts I have ever pondered in my life. What you read may not make since or have a constant flow, but keep in mind, I am a musician not a journalist. J
 
     I’m going to begin this by introducing you to some of my new friends. I can to San Francisco with a goal of making 10 friends in the first week. God heard my goal and gave me much more. I must say I made close to 40 friends in my first week and the number has not stopped growing.
 
     Anyone who knows me can tell you that I am not one to sit around and wait for friends to come to me. So the following people you are about to meet are friends that I have taken the intuitive to step out of my comfort zone and speak with.
 

     This is my buddy Chris. We met the a church. Actually most the people I meet are through church. Chris moved to the city about a month ago. He has goals of becoming a pastor and has a really down to earth personality. He is a vegetarian, which we all know is a concept that is hard for me to grasp. He is really active it environmental studies and really wants to save the Earth. Go Chris!!

     This is Dustin. Dustin is a musician and i met him at church as well. He plays the trumpet, horn, vocal cords, and has a passion for film. He composes much of his own music and has a really down to earth personality. I must say that out of most of the people I have met here, Dustin is constantly pushing to meet his goals and has drive unlike any other.  Cool Dude.

     This is Will. Will is a really fun guy to hang out with. He is someone I like to call my working friend. He has two jobs and usually really easy to get a hold of. LOL… I also met Will at church, and even though we have not had a chance to talk much, I am sure we will become great friends.

      This is Christian. He is the artist in the group. Recently graduated from art school, Christian is someone who really watches people. Mostly sits quietly observing what everyone else does. One day I will get him to talk more, but till then he will just sit in silence.

     After church on Sunday we, and some others, like to get coffee and tea and reflect on life. Most of the time we just sit and talk about things going on, how we are adapting to the city, and what challenges we may be facing. Over all we just really enjoy each others company and we wait with great anticipation to see what God will do with us in this city.

This is Robert. I must say that he is quickly becoming one of my best friends out here. Robert works in communications for the military and has a super amazing faith. Moving to the city from Kentucky, he and I have similar southern roots. That makes the transition a lot easier. He has a great goal of becoming an missionary dentist. I feel this goal is something that everyone should commend him for. This past weekend Robert and I spent most of Sunday together, and although it was a quiet Sunday, it was still very enjoyable.

 

This is the church we attend in the morning. WOW!!! That is all i can say about this church. Such a great worship, and I must admit this is truly Jesus with flesh on. People from all over the world, with all types of backgrounds and so many stories all coming together to Worship the Holy one. AMAZING!!! For so long I was taught that this is how worship is suppose to be, and for the first time i am experiencing it. I love it!!

After chuch Robert, Chris and I went to a Dicerment workshop. This really helped me see how everyone is wanting to know that next step. It was a great eye opener for me, and I absoluly loved the community that was felt in the room. Once the meeting was over Robert and I went to the park. I went to take pictures and Robert soon fell asleep. Trust me I got some of that as well. 🙂

Here are some random shots in the park.

 

 

 

After the park Robert and I got some dinner and went to church again. It was a great Sunday!!!

I really do miss everyone. And I hope I can stay on top of this page. If you have any questions or thoughts please feel free to experss them. I would love to hear what everyone has to say.

I love you all, and cant wait till the next post.