I believe the most profound messages come with the fewest words. During this time, I’ve been still like I don’t ever remember being. During this time, I’ve been able to sit and recharge and think and just be like I've needed for longer than I realize. But the simplest instruction I’ve heeded during this time is “listen.” I’ve been consulting God for months, even longer, for direction and clarity and guidance and just overall insight on so many next (and current) steps of my life. As I approach a birthday and, like many years the like, I become increasingly reflective. I think about my LA-versary and how I found myself on California soil seven years ago today with two bags and dreams aplenty. And as I’ve settled into the city and settled into myself—finding roles and identity and people and opportunities that I never would have imagined—I’ve been asking myself and God “now what,” “what next,” “what am I doing?” “what should I be doing?” and even “what is this?”
As I look at the next steps for myself as an artist, as a businessman, as a father, as a husband, as a part of collectives greater than me alone, I began to consult God more often and more passionately about just what is important to me and what that meant for me.
At the same time, I recognized that all the roles and responsibilities I upheld, the very identities I began to stretch out in and that began to stretch out in me became more than I realized. From speaking engagements to hosting groups to training to writing to editing to social functions to reverenced commitments, while I was the most fulfilled I had ever been, I was the most spread thin I had ever been.
Leading into our collective downtime, I see how I left very little room for spiritual wellness. And while I worked out six times a week and took 3-5 freelance clients monthly and read 2 books every four weeks and represented underserved groups in almost every imaginable capacity, I realized I was not listening—not to myself, not to my own body, not to God.
I believe that any good thing, if not used wisely, is dangerous—fire, electricity, even words. And I saw, I was not using my good things wisely. And what’s more, during my devotion—my time with God-- I heard and felt Spirit’s voice getting louder, yet I would not respond accordingly. And as the state of the world heightened and cried out in need, so did my very self. And in step, as the world was forced into a screeching halt, so was I. And through divine orchestration, everything that I was committed to, working through, strategizing for, planning, organizing, and arranging was immobilized along with the very body I house. And during those weeks, my dreams got more vivid and powerful. I was implored to wake up and pray daily during the 3 and 4:00 am hours. Priorities were revisited, expectations were redefined, and passion reignited—all through stillness and silence.
And gratefully so, I am well, healed, and rested, but continue to operate in that space of checking in to respect stillness and silence. I maintain my morning prayer and devotion. I gauge my body and its needs—for rest, for nourishment, to unplug. And I’m allowing inspiration to flow in all of its manifestations.
Scripture mentions “He who hath an ear, let him hear,” but sometimes life has to stop you to make you listen. And, it’s our responsibility to respond accordingly.