When my daughters were the ages of 3 and 1, I added James Brown’s song “I’m Black and I’m Proud” to our wake-up playlists. We would sing, dance and get dressed for the day with the motivational beats and lyrics of the song.
The song was added to our daily playlist in response to my 3-year-old daughter’s face when an adult cousin ran up to greet us one day with the statement “Let me see my little white cousins”. My daughter’s face looked confused and I immediately corrected our cousin by replying, “Don’t say that to my babies. Black is more than skin deep and if you don’t know that, they are blacker than you”. I’m not sure if that was the Godly way to respond, but it matched my infuriation with our cousin and it satisfied me to see my daughter’s facial expression go from a look of confusion to validation.
From that day on, I began to explain to my daughters that people would see them and label them in different ways. I went on to tell them that no one had the right to classify their beauty or intellect. They are beautiful simply because God said so.
I had to tell them that their kinky light-brown/blondish hair and their blue and hazel eyes were black and beautiful. Before they could even articulate the words to the James Brown’s song clearly – back then, it sounded more like, ‘I back and I pow’ – their little bodies would dance to the beat and I was planting a positive message in their hearts that their black was beautiful.
I am elated to see the movement across this country to solidify that all black is beautiful. We are created in God’s image and He said it was good (Genesis 1:31).
Racism is real and we are all guilty of it. We all have entertained prejudice behavior at some point in our lives. Some of us are even guilty of judging the level of “blackness” within the African-American race, and that alone is hurtful and wrong.
My parents never held me within a certain parameter of blackness, and for that, I am grateful. Instead, they taught me to love and appreciate the beauty and potential in all of God’s creation. Every one of His children is worth fighting for and only love will conquer racism.
1 Corinthians 13:4-8 reminds us how powerful love is:
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.8 Love never fails… (NIV)
Today I concur that BLACK LIVES MATTER. It is understood that ALL lives matter; however, I am reminded of the parable that Jesus spoke of in Matthew 18 and Luke 15 when the shepherd left his 99 sheep to find his 1 lost sheep. Did the other 99 sheep have value? YES, of course they did, but they were safe! It was the one lost sheep that needed to be sought after and found. It was that one lost sheep that MATTERED!
If one of my girls falls and scratches her knee, I am not going to run to assist them both just to prove I love them both. I am going to tend to the one that is hurting – the one crying out for me! If I sense animosity in the other, I will gently reprimand her and help her to understand that it is not about her, but her sister that is in pain. Then I would recruit her in comforting and caring for her sister – because she loves her sister too. That is what this is all about.
All of God’s creation is good and beautiful. I pray that it will not take another 400 years for every child of God to recognize the beauty in our unique diversities. I am wise enough to know that this shell of a body will not make into heaven. I am a Christian and I am an African American. As long as I breathe in this brown skin, I will give glory to God for my beautiful blackness! Say it LOUD! My black is BEAUTIFUL!
Little POW-wow (Pearls of Wisdom)
- Isn’t it good to know that we are all different and God intended it that way? God never purposed us to look or act the same. As much as we would like to fit God into our tiny boxes of perfection, He is greater than that! Take a moment to think about how dull the world would be if we were all the same. Think about how dull the arts, music, literature and food would be without our differences!
- Love is a verb and requires action. What can you do today to help conquer racism with LOVE? What actions can you take to help mend this world of the wounds caused by racism? Make a TO DO list and start now!
Tune My Heart…
Lovely Hoffman is a female songwriter and actress. In 2017 she debuted with the song “My Black is Beautiful”. She wrote and performed the song to address issues of low self-esteem with young girls of color. The video is just as moving as the lyrics and message of the song. Enjoy!
Traci D. Fuller, Pearls and Pretty Pens
#pearlsandprettypens, #myblackisbeautiful, #couragetowrite, #christianmom, #momlife, #letmeencourageyou, #littlepowwow