This post is about my appreciation for God & Kendrick Lamar.
I discussed how I became a recluse in college in the blog post ISOLATE. What I didn’t mention, though, was I also decided to stop believing in God around that time. The backstory. I was raised going to church every 1st and 4th Sunday with grandma. I loved it when I was a little girl, but I became skeptical of it when I was a teenager. I noticed there were few people who actually practiced what was preached. I was confused about a lot of things and when I would ask someone a question about God, I was either told “I don’t know baby” or “uh uh, don’t question God”.
I have 3 piercings in both of my ears; my cartilages and two at the bottom. When I was 14 or 15, I asked my grandma’s pastor if my piercings were a sin. This man told me “well not one or two, but three or four are probably a sin”. I asked why. I forgot his answer, but I remember it contained zero logic. Because I was a teenager, I assumed he only told me they were a sin because he didn’t want me to keep getting piercings or something. I mean, there’s no way this man really expected me to believe that it’s okay to have one or two holes pierced, but not three or four, right? Lol. Anyway, I was 15 or 16 when grandma started letting me decide if I wanted to attend church or not. I mainly went on 4th Sundays because those were youth Sundays. I was in the choir and sometimes I helped out in the kitchen, it was cool.
Back to being a recluse in college. I lived in with roommates, but I was basically alone, life seemed monotonous, and I didn’t care about much outside of my family. One night I was saying my prayers and I thought, why I am I praying? Who am I praying to? So I went a few days, or weeks, without praying or talking to God. One day while cleaning up, I picked up my children’s bible to move it somewhere else. On the inside it has my mom’s signature, my name, and that I received it when I was 6 years old. I thought to myself “well, all my life grandma told me I need to read the bible for myself and ask God for understanding, so why not give it one last go”. I also remembered a sermon from Mrs. Josephine. She’s a very sweet and sassy eldress at my grandma’s church. When I was a little girl, one Sunday she preached about having faith and believing in God. She looked at the crowd and said so passionately “you ain’t gotta believe me, try God for yourself, Try God.
When the sermon was done replaying in my head, I decided I needed to try God for myself. No church, no family, no outside influences. Just me, the bible, and the dictionary. I read one chapter a day from the bible. Somedays I read more depending on the chapter length, how much time I had, and how interesting the stories were. I finished in a little over a year.
*sidebar: I tried to read the bible in whole when I was little. I skimmed around. I read some verses in Revelations one night and was scared. I stopped reading the bible. Lol. When I read Revelations this time, I was not afraid at all. I was proud to see my growth.
I quickly recognized the wisdom in the Bible. I know God is real; the Bible gave me more confirmation. I wanted to keep reading, I wanted to find out more about God. I believe in God because I choose to, not because I was made to or because I was raised to. I believe in God because I’ve seen His works and felt His love. After doing some research and talking to some friends, I was told to read the Book of Enoch and the Apocrypha.
I started reading the Book of Enoch shortly before my spring break trip with Rita. I was finishing up the book during the graduation trip with Rita. The Book of Enoch taught me so much. I loved reading it. I would read the Book of Enoch and listen to untitled unmastered. every time we flew somewhere. Kendrick Lamar had released this project 3 months prior, so I was still interpreting the wordplay greatness on each song. While being amazed at Kendrick Lamar’s wordplay (and trying to keep up with the transitions), I was also amazed at what I was reading in the Book of Enoch. I remember reading about timelessness and Enoch standing on the four corners of the earth and looking at everything God created.
As the airplane was preparing for takeoff, I noticed the sun was rising and the storm was clearing up. The background of the raindrops was astonishingly beautiful. I hurried to get my camera before liftoff. 12 minutes later, the red-blue-purple-ish sky was gone, and a yellow-burnt orange-ish sky appeared. I was in awe of God’s artwork.
· God’s color palette is dope.
Dope: very good.
I don’t stress over semantics or how others interpret a word. I think God’s paintbrush is dope and so is Kendrick Lamar’s discography. I could’ve used a different word to express the life lessons from these pictures, but it wouldn’t have been my authentic thought/feeling from when these pictures were taken.
How I Apply it to My Life:
· I’m mindful when I observe people and nature scenes. I appreciate looking at how God created us, animals, and nature scenery so beautifully and precisely.
· untitled 02 – Kendrick Lamar
· How Much A Dollar Cost – Kendrick Lamar
· FEAR. – Kendrick Lamar
Only untitled 02 was released during this trip. The other 2 songs are in line with what I learned while reading the Book of Enoch & the Apocrypha.
SLIDESHOW: The sky at sunrise & views of clouds from the airplane.