I used to tell the same story over and over again about my life, growing up in a housing project in the inner city of Detroit, in a single-parent home, with four brothers — without a lot of the material things that other people take for granted. Even if I didn’t tell this story to other people, I told it to myself — over and over again. It wasn’t a horror story by any stretch of the imagination, but it was one where I felt the confines of being less than the infinite potential of who I AM. It was one where I felt limited by the appearances of the physical world and deprived of the pure potential of the greatness of God expressing as me.
The story that I was telling was that of an African American girl who was born in a drug-infested, rat-infested, roach-infested, alcohol-addicted world of violence and imprisonment and prostitution and poverty. No matter who I was or what I became, I couldn’t escape it.
And then, an amazing thing happened, the world that had provided me with the dark journey of my soul was bulldozed, razed to the ground. My husband and I drove to Detroit and saw the demolished community that I had called my home for 21 years. I was astonished that what I had once believed was an entire world looked like one New York City block . . . of dirt.
The field of dirt made me feel a little silly, like someone had pulled back the curtain and showed me that my life had been no more than a stage set. And there it was, bare again: ready for the next show. I had always been standing on the edge of something more powerful than who I was in the physical realm. And there it was — the substance of pure potential. That patch of soil helped me see that I am now and have always been the inexhaustible source of unlimited possibility. It made me realize that life is full of opportunities to re-write our personal script of misery into one of lasting deliverance, by re-envisioning who we are and telling a new story.
I am not talking about forgetting the past. I am talking about using it to realize our victory in the present. I am talking about standing on its shoulders as though they are the rock of a mighty ancestor who gives us nothing but strength and courage and fortitude and power and love and might and grace and wisdom to bring our best to a new day.
We don’t have to be confined to someone else’s vision of the past and their perspective of who God is. Jesus told us all we needed to know; he said you are gods!
If you are struggling in the drama of someone else’s hell and cannot seem to reach the door of your own awakening, tell a new story that gives you the courage to leave and begin a new life journey of freedom and independence.
If you keep repeating the same mistakes again and again, then tell a new story where you have used the error of your ways to help other people change their habits.
If you are tip-toeing around the periphery of your calling — afraid to believe that you have the ability to shape and form everything in your midst, then tell a new story — one in which you take the bull by the horns and become all who you were blessed to be.
If you are losing a race that you never seem win because you press forward but each lap moves you further from the finish line, then listen up. We were breathed from Spirit and shaped from the brown soil of mother earth, which is called adam in Hebrew.
Our dreams were born in the rising sun and spun through the glorious stars.
We are more than you could ever imagine.
We were born from kings and queens.
We are heirs to the throne.
That’s why I’m stepping out of the closet where I used to be to tell a new story for myself.
I’m not going to worry about pleasing other people; I’m going to be true to who Spirit summoned me to be.
I’m going to stop re-playing the same tapes.
I’m going to stop suffering through the same issues.
I’m going to write a new story, a powerful story, a story of unlimited resources, a story of divine ideas, a story that stops me from being captive in a melodrama without end, a story in which I leave the nets that I have been hanging onto, a story where my very name invokes the power of God.
You can recreate yourself in the same way that I am. You can tell a new story: one that dares not diminish who you are or any aspect of your divine inheritance. You can write a story without pity, sorrow, or despair; a story without a victim. A story with a hero and a happy ending; a story of prophecy about the true Kingdom of God that is right here inside of us — a place where there is no trepidation, only the realization that you can be and that you are anything that you want to become; a story about every hope, every dream, every desire, every pre-paving prayer that you can utter; a story of greatness that has never been told before — one in which you stand shoulder to shoulder with success; a story where you are one of many catalysts through which others recognize their power; a story of new ideas and fresh insights and infinite abundance and perfect opportunity embracing you, and uplifting you, and anointing you right where you are; a story that unfolds your power and your creativity and your passion and your talent and your spiritual gifts into a victory that is ever-lasting.
Know that the universe will back you up as you speak the story of a new and a great and a fantastic life that you can seize here and now in this moment.
Write your story beloved. Write a new one, and don’t utter the old one ever again.
Cecilia Loving is the owner and creator of God is a Brown Girl Too LLC , as well as the Pastor of SPIRITMUV (www.spiritmuv.com), a nondenominational church in NYC. She will be doing two of the workshops at the retreat, “Tell A New Story” and “Creating Abundance.” Her book, Prayers for those Standing on the Edge of Greatness (www.prayersontheedge.com) will be sold at the retreat.