Being home, I’m forced to look at my relationship with God. The truth is, yes, I still believe in God but the difference is, I don’t believe I have to do anything special or different to get Gods love. I’m convinced my family thinks otherwise, because I don’t pray the way they do. I don’t believe that I have to ask him for forgiveness for just being who he created me to be.
It’s funny how during this pandemic there’s a scripture floating around saying something like, repent and I’ll cleanse the land of its sickness. And my first thought is, why would God do that? That isn’t love. People look at this as God punishing man kind when, maybe as history repeats itself, this occurs every lifetime. Or maybe we can look at it as Gods the planet. I often say everything is connected and I really believe that. I believe that God isn’t separate from us which tends to be my greatest issue with the church. I don’t want to feel like I will be constantly seeking this unattainable righteousness.
I always go back to that pastor I saw online who said, why is that specifically black Christians are the only religious group that believe that we are meant to suffer and receive the rewards of a life of service when we get to Heaven? It reminds me of the scene from the color purple when Celie is confronted by Sophia after she tells Harpo to beat her and Celie says, “This side be over soon, heaven lasts always.” And Sophia, responds, “you better bash misters head open and think about heaven later.” This always made me laugh but I never really understood the full impact of those words until now. I can’t help but wonder about my younger siblings. Don’t get me wrong, I think my parents are doing a wonderful job of raising them. They have so much more freedom to discover and less financial stress. My mom shared that they feel somewhat bad having it “easier” but I don’t. I’m glad I was the experimental child and they can have normal childhoods.
But I wouldn’t trade my experiences for the world. I’m one of the strongest people I know and this time home, teaching and working with them, I have a lot to offer and I’m connecting as myself, not as just a teacher but as a brother, a sparring and dance partner and a gay man. The truth is, I don’t want to teach a class as a teacher, doing ballet with my sister, she has the leg extensions of life and I could tell she was lowering them to make me feel better and I had to tell her, don’t you ever hold back to make someone else feel better. You shine, and make them rise up to you. And that’s exactly what it did. Now, I will most likely never have her extension but doesn’t mean it won’t motivate me to push myself harder to try and keep up. And honestly speaking, I’m crazy enough to work at it and believe that, yes, it can still happen at 33. I surprised myself today and I keep surprising myself. I told my sister, I’m built for dance. My body just agrees with it and it’s fun pulling out the old training techniques from my previous teachers. I know a lot but I am by no means washed up. I can’t wait for this quarantine to be over. I haven’t felt this physically good in years.